News & Analysis as of

Virtual Currency Money Services Business

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 -

FinCEN Takes First Action Against Foreign-Located MSB—“The Virtual Currency Exchange of Choice for Criminals”—For Willfully...

by Ballard Spahr LLP on

On July 26, FinCEN, in coordination with the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of California (“NDCA USAO”), assessed a $110,003,314 civil money penalty against BTC-e a/k/a Canton Business Corporation (“BTC-e”)...more

State Regulators Seek to Reduce Regulatory Burden for Money Services Businesses

by Stinson Leonard Street on

A new Money Services Business (MSB) Call Report was released on April 18, 2017 and is the next step for state regulators towards standardization of MSB regulation, including regulation of certain FinTech companies. The...more

Governor Signs Into Law Amendments to Washington’s Uniform Money Services Act

by Perkins Coie on

On April 18 the governor of Washington signed into law amendments proposed by the Washington Department of Financial Institutions (“DFI”) in December of last year, to the state’s Uniform Money Services Act, including...more

Florida Lawmakers Seek to Bring Virtual Currency into the Fold

by Ballard Spahr LLP on

On Monday, the state of Florida moved a step closer towards amending its money laundering statute to include the nefarious use of bitcoin and other virtual currencies. The bill, H.B. 1379, has sailed through a committee vote...more

Failure to Register with FINCEN Sustains Guilty Pleas by Virtual Currency Exchangers

by Ballard Spahr LLP on

It is a potential crime to conduct a business that exchanges virtual currency and fail to register with the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (“FinCEN“), even if the State in which one operates does not impose a similar...more

Is Your Data Ready to Move to a Uniform Report Submission? NMLS MSB Call Report Adopted for 22 Licenses as of January 1st

Seventeen state agencies, affecting 22 license types, have currently committed to adopt the NMLS MSB Call report for Q1 2017 reporting. The NMLS MSB Call Report applies to licensees who conduct the following activities: money...more

Virtual Currency May Not Be Money but Dismissal Is Real

Is bitcoin money? Not according to a Florida judge who threw out criminal charges against a defendant accused of money laundering and acting as an unlicensed money services business in violation of state law. What...more

EU brings virtual currency exchanges and wallet providers under the EU Anti-Money Laundering Directive

by Reed Smith on

On 5 July 2016, the European Commission (the Commission) adopted a proposal for a directive that, when passed, will begin to narrow the regulatory gap between the U.S. and the EU for virtual currency exchange platforms and...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...

by Reed Smith on

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

by Morrison & Foerster LLP on

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

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

by Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP on

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

Financial Services Weekly News Roundup - October 2014 #5

by Goodwin on

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

Texas Department of Banking Issues Guidance on Treatment of Virtual Currency

On April 3, the Texas Department of Banking released a supervisory memorandum on the regulatory treatment of virtual currencies such as bitcoin under the Texas Money Services Act. The guidance clarified that virtual currency...more

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

by Morrison & Foerster LLP on

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

by Ballard Spahr LLP on

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

Financial Crimes Enforcement Network Issues Guidance on Virtual Currency

FinCEN recently issued interpretive guidance to clarify that it views certain activities involving convertible virtual currencies as money transmission services under the Bank Secrecy Act and FinCEN regulations. If your...more

Virtual Currency: Recent Federal Regulatory Considerations

by Pepper Hamilton LLP on

Bitcoin is a virtual currency – it has no physical form in paper or metal and is not connected with any central bank or governmental authority. It is freely tradable via the internet or other electronic means. Transactions in...more

New FinCEN Guidance Changes Regulatory Landscape For Virtual Currencies And Some Prepaid Programs

by Perkins Coie on

To address a perceived gap in regulatory treatment of increasingly popular virtual currencies, including Bitcoin, the U.S. Department of the Treasury Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) released new guidance on...more

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Cybersecurity

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