New Financial Action Task Force Standards Could Further Hinder Crypto Use By Extremists

There has been a long-standing debate concerning the use cases of cryptocurrency by criminal elements and extremists like ISIS. A recent report from Europol pointed out how terrorist groups have attempted to (and ultimately failed at) using cryptocurrencies to raise cash.

CryptoGlobe reported how Yaya Fanuise of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies Center on Sanctions and Illicit Finance essentially told the House Financial Services the same thing, noting how “cold hard cash is still king” when it comes to financing.

Now, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) says they are ready to agree to a new series of anti-money laundering standards in October that would apply to cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, ones that would make it much harder for criminal or extremist elements to utilize cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin.

Closing Up Loopholes

According to FATF President Marshall Billingslea, the group had made a lot of progress on coming to some sort of a consensus on standards after the G20 asked to make the issue an urgent one.

Billingslea thinks current anti-money laundering (and affiliated) standards are still a “patchwork quilt or spotty process” contributing towards “significant vulnerabilities” for financial systems across the world.

Now, Billingslea says the FATF will convene in October to talk about existing standards and discuss how they should be modified to rope in virtual assets. Then the agency will revise the methodology concerning how these types of standards are implemented. 

Their overall goal is to create a worldwide set of standards “that are applied in a uniform manner.”

Still Keeping An Open Mind

Despite calls from some to task an agency like Europol with crafting a centralized system to keep track of digital wallets linked to nefarious activities, Billingslea maintains cryptocurrencies are still “a great opportunity.”

He thinks regulation should not go too far in one direction since blockchain technology “will continue to evolve.”

Cryptocurrency Exchange Kraken Announces 'Recommitment' to Indian Market

  • Cryptocurrency exchange Kraken has announced its "recommitment" to the Indian markets following last week's Supreme court decision.
  • India's Supreme Court overturned a controversial ruling by the Reserve Bank of India prohibiting banks from lending to crypto businesses. 

Cryptocurrency exchange Kraken has announced its recommitment to Indian markets following a Supreme Court ruling made last week. 

According to a blog post published Mar. 9, Kraken is planning to expand its presence in Indian markets following the Supreme Court’s decision last week to overturn the Reserve Bank of India’s (RBI) controversial ban on cryptocurrency. In 2018, the RBI issued a ruling prohibiting banks from opening accounts for cryptocurrency businesses.

Kraken claims to have a history of servicing the Indian market with a full suite of exchange products but had their growth stifled following the RBI proposal. With the Supreme Court reversing the decision, Kraken has reaffirmed its commitment to India. 

The post reads, 

As believers in the potential of cryptocurrencies to promote financial freedom, we’ve long seen our services as essential in opening access to Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.

Kraken’s Head of Global Business Development Sunny Ray, who founded the first regulated crypto exchange in India, explained the significance of the ruling,

This is an incredibly emotional moment for India. Satoshi created Bitcoin because he felt that central banks were inefficient. The fact that the crypto industry just battled, and won, against the central bank located in the second-most populous country in the world is a massive achievement. We fought for 1.5 billion people to have the right to access crypto.

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