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CFTC, crypto companies, crypto enforcement actions, crypto fines, crypto penalties, Elliptic, enforcement actions, fincen, OFAC, penalties, SEC, unregistered securities
A new report shows that so far, U.S. regulators have imposed fines totaling 2.5 billion U.S. dollars on cryptocurrency companies and individuals. The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) imposes the most fines, followed by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC). At the same time, the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) of the U.S. Department of the Treasury is the latest government agency to closely follow cryptocurrency companies.
Blockchain analytics company Elliptic released a report on Monday outlining “encryption enforcement actions by U.S. regulators.” The report explained: “Contrary to the popular belief that the crypto asset industry is unregulated, U.S. regulators are increasingly imposing major financial penalties on crypto businesses-fraud, violation of anti-money laundering regulations, provision of unregistered securities, and violation of sanctions. Regulations.”
The report details that Elliptic analyzed the enforcement actions of U.S. regulatory agencies since the birth of Bitcoin in 2009 and found that “companies and individuals engaged in cryptocurrency transactions were fined 2.5 billion U.S. dollars.”
The agency with the most penalties for encryption is the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). So far, the US Securities and Exchange Commission has required crypto companies and individuals to pay 1.69 billion U.S. dollars, of which 1.38 billion U.S. dollars are related to unregistered securities products.
The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) ranked second, with a total of $624 million in enforcement actions. The third is the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), which is a department of the US Treasury Department and has $183 million.
The fourth is the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) of the U.S. Department of the Treasury, which is the latest government agency to take action on crypto businesses. In total, OFAC levied $606,000 on encrypted entities. Companies fined by OFAC include Bitgo and Bitpay; both allegedly allow their users to bypass U.S. sanctions.
The report pointed out that the largest enforcement action to date is against Telegram Group Inc. and its wholly-owned subsidiary Ton Issuer Inc. in 2020. The SEC claims that Telegram’s tokens (called “grams”) are unregistered securities offerings. The defendant agreed to return more than US$1.2 billion to investors and pay a civil penalty of US$18.5 million.
The report concluded:
Our analysis of law enforcement actions related to encrypted assets in the United States shows that encryption is far from the “Wild West” of the financial sector. Regulators have successfully used existing laws to stop and punish illegal activities that use encrypted assets.
What do you think of all these enforcement actions by U.S. regulators against cryptocurrency companies and individuals? Let us know in the comments section below.
Image Source: Shutterstock, Pixabay, Wiki Commons, Elliptic
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