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Summary of the FATF’s crypto-asset guidance

The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) is an intergovernmental organisation put in place by the G7 to tackle money-laundering. The most recent and trending topic in the world of AML (Anti-Money Laundering) has been crypto-assets. The FATF has announced their final recommendation this Friday, and it covers “Virtual Asset Service Providers” (VASPs), which includes crypto-exchanges.

The main concern revolves around the identity behind the sending and receiving wallet addresses. As these are only a series of letters and numbers, the FATF has announced that the following information will need to be included in each transfer according to the new guidance release:

  • Originator’s name
  • Originator’s account number (e.g., the VA wallet)
  • Originator’s physical (geographical) address, or national identity number, or customer identification number to uniquely identify the originator
  • Beneficiary’s name
  • Beneficiary account number (e.g., the VA wallet)

According to American politician and investment banker, Steven Mnuchin: “By adopting the standards and guidelines agreed to this week, the FATF will make sure that virtual asset service providers do not operate in the dark shadows. This will enable the emerging FinTech sector to stay one step ahead of rogue regimes and sympathizers of illicit causes searching for avenues to raise and transfer funds without detection.” Although the FATF’s guidance can be neglected by any government, any country that chooses to do so will be blacklisted and become almost impossible to reach for foreign investors.

Image licensed via Shutterstock

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