UK Crypto Firms Gear Up for ‘Travel Rule’ Compliance


The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has set out clear
expectations for cryptocurrency businesses operating in the UK, outlining the
necessary steps they must take to comply with the significant change in the
legislation for money laundering prevention that was enacted in 2022.

According to a statement
shared by the regulator today (Thursday), come September 1, 2023,
cryptocurrency enterprises must comply with the Travel Rule, which necessitates
the collection, verification, and sharing of important information pertaining
to crypto asset transfers.

The Travel Rule emerged
in response to the growing need for transparency and accountability within the
realm of cryptocurrency transactions. By making it mandatory for crypto asset
companies to share pertinent information about transfers, this new legislation
seeks to curb the potential misuse of digital assets for illicit purposes.

Notably, the Financial
Action Task Force (FATF) champions the adoption of the Travel Rule across
jurisdictions, aiming to standardize crypto practices akin to the
well-established rules in the broader financial services sector, the FCA
stated. The rule promotes anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism financing
measures.

As the implementation
deadline draws near, UK cryptocurrency companies are bracing themselves for the
shifts that the Travel Rule will bring. The FCA has outlined a set of
expectations that crypto asset firms need to adhere to, highlighting the
importance of exercising due diligence and taking reasonable steps to ensure
compliance.

Adapting
Business Processes

Some of the major
industry players have already paused their operations in response to
the new regulations. Finance
Magnates
reported
yesterday (Wednesday) that PayPal was temporarily
suspending cryptocurrency sales
for users in the UK for at least three months beginning October 1. In a statement
addressed to its customers, the payments giant emphasized commitment to compliance,
assuring customers that they can still hold or sell their existing crypto
holdings.

For instance, when
sending or receiving crypto assets transfers within the UK or to jurisdictions
that have embraced the Travel Rule, complete adherence becomes necessary, the
FCA noted. However, in cases where transfers are made to jurisdictions that are
yet to adopt the rule, companies are required to establish whether the
recipient entity received the mandated information.

Additionally,
in June, the FCA announced robust
new rules
for marketing
cryptocurrencies in a bid to bolster consumer protection and foster informed
decision-making within the industry. Effective from October 8, 2023, these
rules encompass a range of measures, including the introduction of cooling-off
periods for the first time crypto investors and a ban on ‘refer a friend’
bonuses.

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has set out clear
expectations for cryptocurrency businesses operating in the UK, outlining the
necessary steps they must take to comply with the significant change in the
legislation for money laundering prevention that was enacted in 2022.

According to a statement
shared by the regulator today (Thursday), come September 1, 2023,
cryptocurrency enterprises must comply with the Travel Rule, which necessitates
the collection, verification, and sharing of important information pertaining
to crypto asset transfers.

The Travel Rule emerged
in response to the growing need for transparency and accountability within the
realm of cryptocurrency transactions. By making it mandatory for crypto asset
companies to share pertinent information about transfers, this new legislation
seeks to curb the potential misuse of digital assets for illicit purposes.

Notably, the Financial
Action Task Force (FATF) champions the adoption of the Travel Rule across
jurisdictions, aiming to standardize crypto practices akin to the
well-established rules in the broader financial services sector, the FCA
stated. The rule promotes anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism financing
measures.

As the implementation
deadline draws near, UK cryptocurrency companies are bracing themselves for the
shifts that the Travel Rule will bring. The FCA has outlined a set of
expectations that crypto asset firms need to adhere to, highlighting the
importance of exercising due diligence and taking reasonable steps to ensure
compliance.

Adapting
Business Processes

Some of the major
industry players have already paused their operations in response to
the new regulations. Finance
Magnates
reported
yesterday (Wednesday) that PayPal was temporarily
suspending cryptocurrency sales
for users in the UK for at least three months beginning October 1. In a statement
addressed to its customers, the payments giant emphasized commitment to compliance,
assuring customers that they can still hold or sell their existing crypto
holdings.

For instance, when
sending or receiving crypto assets transfers within the UK or to jurisdictions
that have embraced the Travel Rule, complete adherence becomes necessary, the
FCA noted. However, in cases where transfers are made to jurisdictions that are
yet to adopt the rule, companies are required to establish whether the
recipient entity received the mandated information.

Additionally,
in June, the FCA announced robust
new rules
for marketing
cryptocurrencies in a bid to bolster consumer protection and foster informed
decision-making within the industry. Effective from October 8, 2023, these
rules encompass a range of measures, including the introduction of cooling-off
periods for the first time crypto investors and a ban on ‘refer a friend’
bonuses.



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