The director at the US Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), Kenneth Blanco, on September 29, while giving warning to the banks, stated that it’s high time for them to seriously start thinking about their crypto risk exposure.
2020 ACAMS Anti-Money Laundering Conference
This week, a virtual 2020 ACAMS anti-money laundering Conference was organized in Las Vegas. Blanco being a part of that conference discussed many attributes related to cryptocurrencies and stated that it is the bank’s responsibility to frame and implement some effective anti-money laundering policies.
According to the current FinCEN regulation (FIN-2019-A003), if the financial institutions in the country find out about any kind of suspicious activity, whether it is related to money laundering or other illegal financial purposes, then they should immediately report about it.
Some of the banks in the US are still confused about how digital assets could affect their institutions.
Banks Should Go Through AML Policies, FinCEN Director
The FinCEN Director believes that banks should again go through their AML policies and procedures. He further stated that presently, if, the banks do not look into this matter, then in the future the examiner would do so.
Blanco has recently said, “To be clear, exchanges are not the only ones with crypto risk exposure. These risks are not unique to money services businesses or virtual currency exchanges; banks must be thinking about their crypto exposure as well.”
The director stated that sooner or later the examiners and FinCEN will pay a visit to the banks to assess the effectiveness of the AML program implemented by them. At that time, the examiners will question the banks about some of the risk areas, which Blanco has mentioned earlier.
In the year 2019, the crypto analytics firm CipherTrace Labs published research indicating that out of the ten US retail banks, eight of them were working with the illegal crypto money services businesses (MSBs).
The report additionally stated that MSBs were being operated as an unregistered P2P exchange and they only accept cash in exchange for crypto.