FATF Seeks More Digital Asset AML/KYC

The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) has updated its “Guidance for a risk-based approach to virtual assets and VASPs.” Previous FATF guidance, released in 2015 and updated in 2019, has recommended regulating virtual assets in a similar way to traditional finance, mandating customary KYC/AML laws that affect most financial entities.

The new updates would alter this dramatically, encouraging heightened restrictions and surveillance on virtual asset service providers, or VASPs. The latest guidance includes expansion on what constitutes VASPS, and could potentially be interpreted as including Lightning Network node operators. This type of categorization would require participants to collect vast amounts of information on the activities of others, and could essentially prohibit KYC-free use of decentralized networks.

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