Crypto firms still struggle to comply with AML regulations

September 16, 2021

According to Financial Conduct Authority (FCA),  “significantly high” number of U.K. cryptocurrency firms have failed to meet regulations aimed at curbing money laundering, reports

A list of crypto-asset firms with temporary registration to carry out crypto asset activities was updated on the agency’s website in early September, showing the active role the watchdog is playing in monitoring companies with potential links to money laundering schemes.

And as cryptocurrency adoption has soared during the pandemic, U.K. firms have not been alone in their crypto regulatory struggle. Cayman Islands-based Binance has been facing intense regulatory pressure and scrutiny as authorities around the world seek to clamp down on the fast-growing crypto industry. The U.K. regulator banned the international crypto giant from operating in the country in June, saying in an announcement it had no permission “to undertake any regulated activity in the U.K.”

South Africa’s Financial Sector Conduct Authority (FSCA) is the latest on the list of regulators mounting pressure on the crypto firm. In a September press release, the watchdog warned the country’s public “to be cautious and vigilant when dealing with Binance as they are not authorized to give any financial advice or render any intermediary services” in the country.

The U.S. followed suit in May, with Bloomberg reporting that the exchange was under investigation by several government agencies, including the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), the IRS and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission. Furthermore, Japan, Germany, Hong Kong have raised concerns and issued warnings.

Despite intense scrutiny from regulators across the world, Binance’s billionaire founder Changpeng Zhao said earlier this month that Binance.US., the crypto exchange’s U.S. arm will target an initial public offering (IPO) in three years.

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