Virtual Currency Bank Secrecy Act

Virtual Currency (aka Digital Currency or Digital Money) is a type of currency or medium of exchange that is not issued by any government nor guaranteed by a government currency. Despite lacking legal tender... more +
Virtual Currency (aka Digital Currency or Digital Money) is a type of currency or medium of exchange that is not issued by any government nor guaranteed by a government currency. Despite lacking legal tender status, Virtual Currency is still traded and exchanged in some environments, typically online environments or communities. Bitcoin is the most well-known form of Virtual Currency.    less -
News & Analysis as of

Government Investigations: Use of the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network and Virtual Currency

Since 2009, the US Department of Justice has implemented an aggressive anti-tax evasion strategy that has changed by targeting tax havens that host financial intermediaries (i.e., banks) to the financial intermediaries...more

What We Know About BitCoin, and What Is Still Unknown

In Part I, we gave an overview of Bitcoin and how it’s different from the digital “real currency” that is in widespread use today. In Part II, we’ll ask and answer the question – Is Bitcoin just a fad? Is it novel in...more

The Conference of State Bank Supervisors Adopts Model Regulatory Framework for Virtual-Currency Businesses

Addressing regulatory concerns pertaining to consumer protection, market stability, and law enforcement, the Framework expands on the CSBS draft framework released in December 2014. The Conference of State Bank...more

The CSBS Finalizes Model Framework for Virtual Currencies

On September 15, 2015, the Conference of State Bank Supervisors (“CSBS”) issued its final Model Regulatory Framework on virtual currency activities (“Final Framework”). The Final Framework follows the CSBS’s December 2014...more

Virtual Currencies are Getting Attention from Industry and Bank Regulators

Virtual currencies such as Bitcoin, once a novel means of exchange, have become so commonplace that in May of this year the New York Stock Exchange created a first-of-its-kind index (the “Index”) representing the U.S. dollar...more

Corporate Investigations & White Collar Defense - May 2015

It’s an Absolute Privilege to Meet You! Texas Supreme Court Rules That Internal Investigation Report Provided by Shell Oil to DOJ Enjoys “Absolute Privilege” - Why it matters: On May 15, 2015, the Texas Supreme Court...more

Ripple Labs Fined $700,000 Over Bank Secrecy Act Violations: Lessons Learned from FinCEN’s first Civil Enforcement Action Against...

On May 5, 2015, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (“FinCEN”) fined Ripple Labs Inc. (“Ripple Labs”) and its wholly owned subsidiary XRP Fund II LLC (“XRP II”) $700,000 for violations of the Bank Secrecy Act (“BSA”)....more

“Firsts” for the World of Virtual Currencies

There have been two recent virtual currency-related actions worthy of note: (1) the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (“FinCEN”) announced its first civil enforcement action against a virtual currency exchanger, and (2)...more

Department of Justice Settles Virtual Currency Enforcement Action

The US Attorney’s Office in the Northern District of California recently settled an enforcement action against Ripple Labs Inc., a Delaware corporation providing virtual currency exchange services. According to the settlement...more

Federal Authorities Announce Settlement with Ripple Labs Inc. Resolving Investigation

Federal authorities announced this week a settlement with Ripple Labs Inc. and its subsidiary, XRP Fund II, resolving an investigation by FinCEN and the Department of Justice into violations of the Bank Secrecy Act.  ...more

State Virtual Currency Regulatory Heat Map

As we approach the end of a very active year in the emergence of virtual currency regulation, we developed a heat map of the regulatory climate faced by virtual currency wallet providers and exchanges – entities who maintain...more

Digital Currency Corner - What FinCEN’s Denial of Payment Processing Exemption for Virtual Currency-Related Businesses Means for...

Why it matters - The rapid evolution of virtual and digital currencies has spawned significant activity in several federal agencies with implications potentially for traditional entities in certain cases. In addition...more

Recent Key Bitcoin and Virtual Currency Regulatory and Law Enforcement Developments

In recent months, US federal and state regulators have continued to focus on Bitcoin and the adoption of a regulatory framework for it and other "virtual currencies," as well as the enforcement of existing securities laws to...more

FinCEN Continues Scrutiny of Virtual Currency Companies

The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network recently issued two administrative rulings holding that certain virtual currency trading platforms and payment systems were subject to registration as money services businesses....more

FinCEN Rulings Designate Certain Virtual Currency Businesses as Money Transmitters

On October 27, 2014, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (“FinCEN”) issued two administrative rulings regarding virtual currency. The first administrative ruling concerns a proposed virtual currency trading and booking...more

Financial Services Weekly News Roundup - October 2014 #5

In this issue: - In preliminarily denying two exemption requests, the SEC takes a stand for market transparency in ETFs and upholds the arbitrage mechanism that allows market prices to closely track NAVs. -...more

FinCEN Releases Two Rulings Classifying a Bitcoin Payment System and Virtual Currency Trading Platform as MSBs

In its opening salvo bringing bitcoin under the watchful eye of the federal government, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) issued a Guidance (FIN-2013-G001) in March 2013 clarifying that anti-money laundering...more

NY Regulator Releases First Regulatory Framework For Virtual Currency

It happened: Benjamin Lawsky, Superintendent of New York’s Department of Financial Services (DFS) announced the release of the DFS’s much-anticipated proposal for a BitLicense, stating “We have sought to strike an appropriate...more

Hazards Abound for Companies Seeking to Accept Bitcoin

The Bitcoin “Cryptocurrency” has gained momentum in the market, and some businesses, including Overstock. com and TigerDirect.com, now accept bitcoins as payment. Many others are wondering if Bitcoin is a good fit for...more

FinCEN Issues Five Advisory Rulings Concerning the Application of the Bank Secrecy Act’s Definition of “Money Transmitter” to...

The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (“FinCEN”) published five administrative rulings (collectively, the “Rulings,” and each a “Ruling”) concerning the applicability of certain exemptions from money transmitter status to...more

Financial Services Law - Mar 14, 2014

State and Federal Lawmakers, Chair of Fed Weigh in on Regulation of Virtual Currency - The New York Department of Financial Services issued an order on Wednesday that it will immediately start accepting applications...more

Financial Services Law - Feb 28, 2014

Light ’em Up: FinCEN’s Cautionary Guidance About Banks Working With Marijuana Companies - The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network’s new guidance on how to work with marijuana-related businesses is unlikely to make it...more

FinCEN Issues Additional Clarifications Regarding Bitcoin and other Convertible Virtual Currency Activities

On January 30, 2014, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (“FinCEN”) issued two administrative rulings that address the application of Bank Secrecy Act (“BSA”) regulations to convertible virtual currency-related...more

FinCEN Rules on Status of Virtual Currency Miners and Investors as Money Service Businesses

The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) has issued two rulings regarding the status of virtual currency miners and investors as money service businesses (MSB) under the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA). The rulings address...more

FinCEN Issues MSB Guidance for Bitcoin Miners, Investors and Software Developers

On January 30, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) published two administrative rulings (Administrative Rulings) clarifying that certain participants in the Bitcoin economy (and other convertible virtual...more

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