Further Scrutiny for Facebook’s Libra As Money Laundering Regulators Zone In

Will Heasman

The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) aka the world's money laundering watchdog has announced its intention to keep a sharp eye on Facebook's emerging cryptocurrency Libra. 

According to Reuters, FATF president Xiangmin Liu laid down the law, indicating that the agency wouldn't be going easy on Libra, noting that if there are significant risks, they will "need to be addressed."

Lui also noted that the obscurity afforded to cryptocurrencies is allowing scope for further subversion of the monetary system, adding:

These activities are likely to be growing quickly, as law enforcement agencies are only seeing the tip of the iceberg.

Creating appropriate anti-money laundering solutions is pivotal to the regulation of cryptocurrencies. In June the FATF laid down new guidelines pertaining to the tackling of money laundering and terrorist financing. 

Nevertheless, Lui shared concerns that the ever-growing nature and speed of cryptocurrency transactions, pose an issue when distinguishing illicit activities:

We have talked about finding suspicious activity as being like finding a needle in a haystack. Well, that haystack is getting bigger and bigger and is moving all the time.

Meanwhile, Libra is still on hold as regulatory scrutiny reaches fever pitch. Most notably the firm has been accused by several antitrust regulators - in both the US and the EU - of anti-competitive behavior. In a prepared statement Libra co-founder, David Markus noted that the proposed digital asset wouldn't launch in any jurisdiction in which it wasn't adequately regulated:

We know we need to take the time to get this right. And I want to be clear: Facebook will not offer the Libra digital currency until we have fully addressed regulatory concerns and received appropriate approvals.

Featured image credit: photo via Pixabay.com.