Cryptocurrency has been gaining mainstream acceptance in recent years, but the regulatory environment surrounding it is still uncertain. In an article published by Bitcoin.com, former Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) officials warn that a “regulatory onslaught” is just beginning for the crypto industry.
The SEC is the primary regulator for securities in the United States, and its guidance on cryptocurrency has been limited. However, the agency has been cracking down on initial coin offerings (ICOs) deemed fraudulent or unregistered securities. Additionally, the SEC has stated that it views many cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin and Ethereum, as securities. This means they are subject to federal securities laws, and any entities dealing in these assets must register with the SEC.
The former SEC officials warn that the crypto industry should expect more enforcement actions from the agency shortly. They also suggest that the SEC may start to regulate crypto exchanges, which are currently largely unregulated. This could include requiring them to register as national securities exchanges and subjecting them to several rules and regulations.
The former officials also point out that the regulatory environment for crypto is not limited to the SEC. Other federal agencies, such as the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), also have jurisdiction over certain aspects of crypto. For example, the CFTC has jurisdiction over derivatives and commodities related to crypto, while FinCEN is responsible for enforcing anti-money laundering (AML) and know-your-customer (KYC) regulations.
The former SEC officials also highlight that the crypto industry should expect more scrutiny from state regulators. For example, the New York State Department of Financial Services (NYDFS) has issued a set of guidelines for crypto companies operating in the state, known as BitLicense. Other states, such as Texas and Wyoming, have also published their guidance on crypto.
The former SEC officials suggest that the crypto industry should proactively engage with regulators to shape the regulatory environment. They suggest that the industry should work with regulators to develop a clear and consistent framework for crypto rather than waiting for the government to impose one. They also advise crypto companies to work with regulators to understand and comply with existing laws rather than trying to circumvent them.
In conclusion, the former SEC officials warn that the crypto industry should expect a “regulatory onslaught” shortly. They suggest that the SEC may start to regulate crypto exchanges and that other federal and state agencies also have jurisdiction over certain aspects of crypto. They advise crypto companies to engage proactively with regulators to shape the regulatory environment and to work with them to understand and comply with existing laws. The crypto industry must take these warnings seriously and prepare for more regulations.
Sourced from: https://news.bitcoin.com/former-sec-officials-crypto-warning-regulatory-onslaught-is-just-beginning/