The European Commission confirmed a new proposal this week, calling for stricter regulation of anonymous cryptocurrency wallets and transactions.
According to the document, the Commission proposed to oblige companies that facilitate the transfers of Bitcoins and other cryptocurrencies to collect various personal data from senders and recipients. In theory, this should help law enforcement agencies fight money laundering.
“Today's changes will ensure full traceability of transfers of crypto-assets such as Bitcoin and will allow for the prevention and detection of their possible use for money laundering or terrorist financing,” the Commission said in its press release. “In addition, anonymous crypto asset portfolios will be prohibited, fully applying EU AML/CFT rules to the crypto industry.”
Under the Commission's proposal, companies that process cryptoassets transactions will have to register customer names, addresses, dates of birth, account numbers and names of recipients.
A few years ago, to help curb money laundering, the EU banned anonymous bank accounts and is now extending those rules to the crypto market. While many users are concerned about privacy, legal clarity is positive for everyone in this market, especially institutional investors.