India's IT Trade Association, Nasscom, Clarifies That Cryptocurrencies Are Illegal

  • India's IT trade association,  Nasscom, has clarified that dealing in cryptocurrenices is illegal. 
  • Nasscom also said regulators need to focus on making regulatory policies that do not stifle innovation. 

The Hindu Businessline reported on October 25th that Debjani Ghosh, the president of the National Association of Software & Services Companies (Nasscom), had said digital currencies were illegal and requested India’s citizens to abide by the nation’s laws and regulations.

Contacting Authorities For Clarification 

Ghosh had also said that in cases where people need clarification regarding the Indian government’s rules, requirements, or policies for a particular type of business activity, then they should contact the authorities for clarification.

Nasscom, an India-based trade association for business process outsourcing (BPO) and IT, has made it very clear that digital currencies are illegal, Ghosh noted. She said:

It is law of the land and hence, we have to work with it. If we do not agree, we have to go back to the government and speak about why cryptocurrencies aren’t correct.

Debjani Ghosh

As CryptoGlobe reported recently, Indian authorities have increased their scrutiny of crypto-related businesses in the country as they reportedly took down India’s first Bitcoin ATM (BTM) - which had been installed by local digital asset exchange, Unocoin.

Problems Due To "Failure Of Policy Making"

According to the local police department, Unocoin’s BTM was taken down because the exchange operator was reportedly not authorized to set up the machine. As covered, Unocoin had been trying to bypass the reserve bank of India’s (RBI) ban on cryptocurrencies by using BTMs.

Commenting on the Indian government’s stance on crypto assets, Ghosh said:

The genesis of this problem, however, lies in the failure of policy making not keeping pace with rapid technological changes.

Debjani Ghosh

She added: “Nasscom’s focus would be to say, how do you synergise technological development and policy making. I think that will be our focus.” When questioned about India’s current regulatory framework, Ghosh noted that there is a lot of confusion, or lack of clarity.

"Trying To Understand Cryptocurrencies"

However, she also said that Nasscom was “looking into” various issues, or challenges, related to using cryptocurrencies in India and was “trying to understand it, [in order] to have some clarity in terms of guidelines for startups.”

As covered, the Supreme Court of India has supported RBI’s stance against cryptos as the nation’s reserve bank had ordered all local financial institutions to stop offering banking services to those dealing in cryptocurrencies.

The RBI had claimed that bitcoin (BTC) and other digital currencies help facilitate and encourage illegal transactions

38% of Crypto Exchanges Interact With High-Risk Entities in 25% or More of Their Transactions

Leading cryptoasset data provider CryptoCompare has published an updated version of its cryptocurrency Exchange Benchmark. The report details that 38% of crypto exchanges interact with high-risk entities in 25% or more of their transactions.

According to CryptoCompare’s Exchange Benchmark, interactions with high-risk entities are considered when the cryptoasset data provider is raking exchanges. These interactions are measured according to CipherTrace’s Interaction Risk Score, which profiles transactional risk by “deanonymizing risky entities and illicit activities to identify criminal sources of funds and money laundering exposure.”

CryptoCompare then scores exchanges according to the percentage of transactions conducted with entities deemed high-risk. These include criminals, darknet markets and vendors, gambling projects, malware operators, cryptocurrency mixers, ransomware operators, and OFAC sanctions addresses.

The benchmark details that addresses with up to 25% of transactions conducted with these entities receive some points, but those above said mark receive none. Notably, 38% of cryptoasset exchanges were above it.

Data shared in the report detailed that Top-Tier cryptoasset exchanges, those graded AA to B in the report, interact less with these entities, while Lower-Tier exchanges, those rated C-E, interacted more. While both AA-related exchanges, Coinbase and Gemini, had no interactions with high-risk entities, some of the exchanges with A, BB, and B ratings did.

As CryptoGlobe reported, the Exchange Benchmark also revealed Top-Tier exchanges are gaining market share against Lower-Tier exchanges. It details that top-tier exchanges accounted for 32% of the global volumes in Q4 2019, while in the first quarter of this year they accounted for 36%.

In the second quarter of 2020, the Top-Tier exchanges already accounted for 40% of the global trading volume. In June these exchanges got to a 46% market share. Lower-Tier Exchanges, have seen their share of the space’s total trading volume drop from 68% to 60% in the last three quarters.

Featured image via Pixabay.