Digital Payments

Australia Moves To Reform Digital Currency Laws

Digital currency is becoming one of the more pervasive forces pushing its way into all industries. As cryptocurrencies like bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash and Ethereum become more popular, governments around the world are trying their best to figure out what the next best steps are in terms of laws and regulation.

Following one of the largest financial incidences with the Commonwealth Bank of Australia, the country is hoping to bolster its security efforts when it comes to anti-money laundering laws and regulations. This past week, Australia’s capital of Canberra shared news that it is planning to put the regulatory responsibility of virtual currency exchanges under the purview of its financial crime fighting agency, AUSTRAC.

Fraudulent activity involving digital currencies has become increasingly prevalent, and AUSTRAC is taking no chances. The Australian financial crime fighting agency has started a civil legal action against the Commonwealth Bank of Australia to help get to the bottom of the supposed money laundering and financing of terrorism through 50,000 alleged breaches. The hope is that through these regulatory actions, organized crime will either slow down significantly or come to a complete stop, without interfering in day-to-day financial industry activities.

The proposed bill for Australian banks will help regulators better monitor the virtual currency arena for the first time and deregulate low-risk industries. Australia’s Justice Minister, Michael Keenan, commented on the country’s forward movement with regards to pushing forth a new bill to help put an end to bitcoin fraud or breaches.

“Stopping the movement of money to criminals and terrorists is a vital part of our national security defenses, and we expect regulated businesses in Australia to comply with our comprehensive regime,” said Keenan.

As digital currencies like Bitcoin Cash and Ethereum become more popular around the world, it’s likely that we’ll start to see other countries create more regulatory agencies, following Australia’s lead.


Latest Insights: 

The Payments 2022 Study: Building A High-Performance Payments Team For Fraud Detection, a PYMNTS collaboration with Stripe, examines how digital platforms of all sectors and sizes plan to develop their anti-fraud teams as part of their their broader growth and development strategies. Drawing from an extensive survey from approximately 250 payments heads at digital platforms in the U.S. and abroad, our study analyzes how poor anti-fraud capabilities can harm platforms’ long-term growth strategies, and how they can build high-performing teams to tackle these challenges.

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