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Ready, Set, Regulate

Regulators Go After Bitcoin With Investigative Fury

Itís been a rough couple of weeks for the bitcoin crowd. First a Federal judge in Texas rules that bitcoin is a currency, allowing a case involving an alleged bitcoin Ponzi scheme to proceed. And this week, the U.S. Senate began interviewing and the NYS Department of Financial Services sent subpoenas to a number of industry participants, asking about anti-money laundering and consumer protection issues.

"DFS is considering whether it should issue new regulatory guidelines that are tailored to the unique characteristics of virtual currencies," said Benjamin Lawsky, New York Stateís activist banking superintendent, in a statement. Lawsky has also recently gone after payday lenders, debt collectors and bank consultant Deloitte.

"Even if a recipient does not believe it needs to be regulated as a money transmitter in New York, it will achieve a better outcome by cooperating with the process and entering into a dialogue with the New York Department of Financial Services about how it can best respond to the subpoena,Ē told Adam Shapiro, director with the Promontory Financial Group, LLC to American Banker.† †

Want to hear the latest on how bitcoin and other virtual currencies will be regulated, and how they might be co-opted into the traditional payments system? Join us on October 22, when Shapiro will be joined by Juan Llanos, co-founder, EVP and compliance officer with Unidos Financial, to cover the regulatory requirements for the players entering the virtual currency space, and the banks and other traditional providers that serve them.

Their panel will be one of the many sessions addressing digital currency and emerging payments at the 21st Annual ATM, Debit & Prepaid Forum at the Bellagio in Las Vegas.

Take a close look at this session, and many others:

Compliance and AML

The Merchant Perspective on Digital Money

Bitcoin for Bankers: Virtual Currency Overview

Beyond Bitcoin Ė Other New Monies

-ATM, Debit & Prepaid Forum Team