FATF issues new standards on Virtual Assets

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FATF has issued new binding standards to prevent the misuse of virtual assets for money laundering and terrorist financing.

The new standards are aimed at both the national level, in terms of what countries need to do, as well as at the providers of virtual asset-related services.  A key objective of the new standards is to ensure that regulation is applied to virtual assets, as it does for existing currencies and payment methods. In developing the standards FATF undertook extensive consultation with the virtual asset service sector, to enhance the communication between it and national authorities.

The standards reflect the seriousness of the AML/CTF risks in virtual assets in the eyes of international standard-setters. FATF said …without proper regulation, [virtual assets] risk becoming a virtual safe haven for the financial transactions of criminals and terrorists.

FATF has compelled countries to implement the new standards “soon”, though it is not yet clear how these will filter down to national implementations.

Read Plenitude’s insights on what financial institutions needs to do

Image credit: FATF

Read more on the FATF website here

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