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From the year 2020 going forward, the United Kingdom government will attempt to make the UK very unsafe for criminal economic activities. This was disclosed in the newly-curated Economic Crime Plan that would take effect next year. Crypto, not surprisingly, is part of the plan as well.
The move to partner up with both the private sector and law enforcement agencies was indeed essential as financial fraudulent acts in the UK are denting the reputation of the country as one of the safest destinations to live in and do business. Although the UK has put up the fiercest fight against ‘dirty money,’ one out of every 15 individual still falls prey to one fraudulent act or the other. In fact, the report shows that that about £1.6 billion has been stolen by criminals between 2010 and 2018.
As a widespread leech eating deep into the root of the country, the government has decided to work hand in hand with both the private sector and law enforcement agencies to put a final stop to all sources of illegal money including fraud, corruption, money laundering, and bribery.
And one lucrative source of such money in recent years is the crypto sphere. Money launderers and other fraudsters have cashed on the loopholes concerning cryptocurrency to extort huge sums from unsuspecting victims. In the new Economic Crime Plan, together with other sectors, the government plan to establish a new crypto regime with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), which is already deeply involved in this clash, that will keep fraudsters out of the crypto sphere for good.
True, they already have some existing rules, but these criminals seem to have gotten used to the system. Therefore, the plan is to create a more enforceable stringent rules that will be extremely difficult to crack. The report explains that although this new set of rules will be in line with international standards, it will be very much comprehensive by itself that it would pass for the most comprehensive global response to the use of virtual assets in illegal activities.
Crypto Assets Under Anti-Money Laundering Regulation
From January 2020, according to the new rules, businesses which trade crypto assets will be brought under the Anti-Money Laundering and Cryptoasset Taskforce (AML/CTF) regulation, with the FCA being the AML/CTF supervisor of cryptoasset firms.
Even more, the report states:
“in recognizing the risks that these types of activities pose, the government is considering expanding the FCA’s supervisory toolkit to ensure it has the appropriate means by which to introduce and maintain a strong AML regime in the UK for relevant cryptoassets firms.”
We are hopeful that this new plan will increase the level of trust and the sense of security to the crypto space.