The United States Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) Director Kenneth Blanco said that Virtual Asset Service Providers (VASPs) should abide by Anti-Money Laundering (AML) laws just like all other corporations.

On Nov. 15, Reuters reported that Director Blanco clearly stated that any money service businesses providing virtual asset related services are subject to anti-money laundering laws. He said:

“It [travel rule] applies to CVCs (convertible virtual currencies) and we expect that you will comply, period. […] That’s what our expectation is. You will comply. I don’t know what the shock is. This is nothing new.”

FinCEN Director Kenneth Blanco

The FATF guideline for virtual assets and virtual asset service providers will be enforced in the United States and this guideline imposes the same legal obligations on the cryptocurrency industry as the anti-money laundering obligations applied to the existing banking sector.

FinCEN points out that the travel rule on FATF guideline simply asks for name, address, account number, transaction recipient, and amount to ensure the person engaged in transaction is not dealing with illicit activities.

FinCEN has been conducting investigations that include compliance with anti-money laundering since 2014. In April 2019, FinCEN confirmed the sentence for Eric Powers, who rant the P2P cryptocurrency business without complying with anti-money laundering regulations. FinCEN fined 35,000 dollars and suspended the business.

As detailed regulations on the scope and level of regulation of virtual assets and virtual asset service providers are presented in each FATF member country, Korea is also expected to follow the law revision and system revision promptly.

Emma Kang

Author Emma Kang

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