On November 23, 2021, the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs sent a series of letters to prominent stablecoin issuers and cryptocurrency exchanges. Citing the recent President’s Working Group on Financial Markets report on stablecoins, the letters seek to clarify basic operational features of various stablecoins which the Committee believes is critical to improving its understanding of digital assets.
Continue Reading Senate Banking Committee Probes Stablecoins

On 25 October 2021, the Dubai Financial Services Authority, the regulatory body of the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), announced that it implemented a regulatory framework for investment tokens issued or traded within the DIFC, which follows from the Consultation Paper No. 138 (Regulation of Security Tokens) it issued earlier in March this year.
Continue Reading Dubai Financial Services Authority Recently Launched Its Framework for Regulating Digital Assets

On November 8, 2021, law enforcement agencies in both the United States and European Union announced that a series of actions, including a number of arrests, were taken against the Russia-linked ransomware group, “REvil.”
Continue Reading Russia-Linked REvil Hackers and Their Affiliates Hit with Arrests by the U.S. and International Allies

On November 1, 2021, the President’s Working Group released a long-awaited report on stablecoins. The Report outlines a number of significant legislative recommendations for Congress to consider as well as a number of interim measures that agencies should adopt under their existing authorities to protect against prudential risks in the near-term.
Continue Reading President’s Working Group Releases Report on Stablecoins

In 15 recent enforcement actions, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission announced charges against various digital asset exchanges for failure to register appropriately as futures commission merchants. This series of actions is the latest in an ongoing regulatory crackdown across federal agencies involving cryptocurrency and other digital asset trading platforms.
Continue Reading CFTC Charges Crypto Platforms for Registration and Trading Violations

On September 13, 2021, New York Attorney General Letitia James announced the entry of a default judgment against crypto platform Coinseed and its CEO. The default judgment includes broad injunctive relief against Coinseed’s future operations in New York state. The case is one of many that regulators have recently brought against crypto trading platforms.
Continue Reading New York AG Obtains Default Judgment Against Crypto Platform

In a settled enforcement case announced August 9, 2021, the SEC fined Poloniex, LLC, a crypto trading platform, for operating an unregistered securities exchange. Then, on August 10, 2021, the CFTC and FinCEN announced a settled enforcement case against crypto exchange BitMEX for anti-money laundering violations and failure to register with the CFTC as a trading platform. The cases highlight US regulators’ increased focus on cryptocurrency exchanges.
Continue Reading Regulators Continue Crackdown on Crypto Exchanges

On July 20, 2021, New Jersey’s Acting Attorney General announced that the State’s Bureau of Securities issued a Summary Cease and Desist Order to stop BlockFi, Inc. from selling unregistered securities in the form of interest-bearing cryptocurrency accounts. While commentators frequently focus on the enforcement activities of the Securities and Exchange Commission in the crypto space, New Jersey’s action against DeFi platform BlockFi serves as a reminder that state securities regulators also actively police this marketplace.
Continue Reading New Jersey Orders DeFi Platform to Cease Offering Interest-Bearing Crypto Accounts

Mark Alexander Hopkins, known as “Doctor Bitcoin,” pled guilty in the Northern District of Texas on June 29, 2021, to illegally operating a cash-to-cryptocurrency conversion business. According to a press release from the Department of Justice, Hopkins pled guilty to one count of operation of an unlicensed money transmitter business.
Continue Reading “Doctor Bitcoin” Pleads Guilty to Illegal Crypto Conversion Scheme