On September 16, Strevus Inc., provider of compliance lifescylee management solutions for financial solutions and digital currency firms, issued a statement commenting on the New York Department of Finance’s recently published BitLicense Proposal. The proposal (read here) outlines prospective state licensing requirements for the issuing and use of digital currency. In response to the proposed guidelines, Srtevus especially touches upon the anti-money laundering (AML), Know Your Customer (KYC), and fraud and terror financing provisions, urging DFS to limit the burden of such requirements on digital currency.
In the first section of the comments, Strevus points to specific instances in which the DFS proposals are overly burdensome. For example, referring specifically to Section 200.12, Strevus asks DFS to reduce the retention period of books and records from 10 years to five years in order to be consistent with the New York State’s Money Transmission law, as well as the federal Bank Secrecy Act provisions. Furthermore, the company’s comments, in the second section, provide numerous examples citing overly burdensome terms, such as;
Section 200.15(g)(2)– mandatory EDD on all non-US persons.
Section 200.15(d)(1)– licenses as part of their Anti-Money Laundering Program (AML) keep records of all transactions including the identity and address of all parties involved.
Section 200.15(g)– upon new account openings, each Licenssee must verify the customer’s identity.
Section 200.15(f)- “No Licensee shall engage in, facilitate, or knowingly allow the transfer or transmission of Virtual Currency when such action will obfuscate the identity of an individual customer or counterparty.”
Peter Swire, Advisory Board member at Strevus, states,
The BitLicense proposal has historic importance as it represents the first significant attempt at rulemaking around digital currency, which will enable new technologies to flourish while also working to ensure that consumers and our country’s national security remain protected.”
As emphasized by Swire, the attempts by DFS to regulate virtual currency has great potential to impact the future of cryptocurrencies as a whole. While Bitcoin continues to gain legitimacy among both retailers and on Wall Street, the way in which policy makers choose to regulate it will greatly determine its future use. Currently, Bitcoin attracts consumers to its speed and lack of geographical boundaries. In creating regulations, companies hope policy makers will avoid provisions that will limit the potential of such currencies.
Read more here- “Strevus Comment on NY BitLicense Proposal,” (John Bliss, Strevus)