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UK FCA’s Stance on Crypto Seen as Harsh but Fair

Recently, the United Kingdom’s Financial Conduct Authority released a detailed statement urging all local crypto business operators to register with the government watchdog by June 30. As part of the document, the regulator has made it absolutely clear that applications will need to have been processed, at the latest, by the end of the official grace period, which ends on Jan. 10, 2021, and failing to meet the requirement will result in a...

Canada Tightens Crypto Regulations Alongside AML/CTF Overhaul

The Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Center of Canada (FINTRAC) has announced it will soon implement new anti-money laundering (AML) and counter-terrorist financing (CTF) regulations. The laws including updated guidelines for virtual currencies.In a departmental report published on March 10, FINTRAC emphasizes that the establishment of “an enhanced AML/ regime” for businesses operating with cryptocurrencies is “a major priority in the near term.”FINTRAC expands regulatory mandate regarding offshore crypto companiesIn the report,...

New PlusToken Report Shows KYC May Be Smoke and Mirrors

A new report on the PlusToken Ponzi scheme shows regulated exchanges are being used to dump coins, despite stringent Know Your Customer (KYC) identify verification rules.Investigative company OXT Research has released a second edition of their in-depth blockchain analysis on the PlusToken scam.The report explained PlusToken funds generally moved from unmixed allotments and locations, to mixers. After mixers, the funds saw consolidation, and then finally distribution. OXT’s report said:“Approximately 80% of coins...

The IRS Gets Schooled on Crypto

It is no secret that the United States Internal Revenue Service is working to cope with the unique challenges of taxing cryptocurrencies. In the first of a series of panels today, March 3, four experts spoke about recent advancements in cryptocurrency technology and the challenges and opportunities they present for regulators.Public ledgers offer more transparency to regulatorsJesse Spiro, global head of policy & regulatory affairs at crypto analysis firm Chainalysis, was especially optimistic...

Crypto Contributes to Money Laundering Problems in Latin America, Report

Amid a major economic downturn, countries in Latin America (LATAM) are increasingly suffering from money laundering through cryptocurrencies, a new report says.Cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin (BTC) have become a major tool of organized crime groups and hackers in LATAM countries, according to a Feb. 27 report issued by threat intelligence firm IntSights.Titled “The Dark Side of Latin America,” the report claims that LATAM countries top the list of the world’s worst money laundering...

Hong Kong and Abu Dhabi Change Crypto Regulations to Align With FATF

On Feb. 26, Hong Kong’s financial secretary Paul Chan stated that his administration will strengthen its Anti-Money Laundering (AML) and Counter-Terrorist Financing (CTF) policies regarding cryptocurrencies.In his recent budget speech, Chan indicated that the amendments will address recommendations made by global financial watchdog, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF). New regulations to affect crypto exchanges, precious metals dealersThe FATF assessed that Hong Kong was “largely compliant” with its AML/CTF guidelines following a September...

Financial Watchdogs See Crypto as Illicit by Default

Recently, financial regulators around the world have been growing concerned about the role of cryptocurrency in money laundering and financing of various illicit activities. The first two months of 2020 saw many governments acting on these concerns and introducing a variety of legal measures designed to bolster their defenses against financial cybercrime allegedly facilitated by the use of digital money.Russia has become the latest of the major jurisdictions to make a move...

Finnish Customs Puzzled on what to do with 15M Euro Seized in Bitcoin

While some governments are selling bitcoins (BTC) confiscated through law enforcement actions, Finland is yet to decide what to do with its seized BTC.Finnish Customs, operating under the Ministry of Finance, has reportedly been deliberating about what to do with 1,666 bitcoins seized from drug criminals years ago.As reported by Finland's national public broadcasting firm on Feb. 25, the Finnish Customs service doesn’t want to auction the confiscated Bitcoin because the cryptocurrency...

New Blockchain Forensics Tool Developed Through French-Austrian Cooperation

The French cybersecurity company Nigma Conseil and the Austrian Institute of Technology (AIT) have revealed to have collaborated on developing a new blockchain forensics tool. The agreement was signed on Feb. 25 to work on e-Nigma, a proposed compliance tool.E-Nigma provides its users with a way of conducting due diligence investigations in response to Know Your Customer (KYC) and Anti-Money Laundering (AML) regulation. Like other similar tools, it monitors and organizes blockchain...

Are the BZx Flash Loan Attacks Signaling the End of DeFi?

Earlier this week, the decentralized lending protocol bZx was exploited in back-to-back “flash loan” attacks. While the two exploits were distinct, the end results remained the same. In total, $954,000 was gleaned from the platform. But what exactly happened? Was it an exploit, a simple case of arbitrage or a malicious attack? And where does decentralized finance go from here?It hasn’t been a good PR week for the DeFi sector. For some,...
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