Bitcoin Daily: DOJ DeFi Fraud Spikes IRS Investigate Binance Crypto Exchange; Crypto Theft Falls

Bitcoin Daily: DOJ, IRS Investigate Binance Crypto Exchange; Crypto Theft Falls, DeFi Fraud Spikes


Cryptocurrency exchange Binance Holdings is now under investigation by the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the IRS as they try to make some order out of a mostly unregulated market, Bloomberg reported.

Binance has mostly avoided regulation, much the same as the general industry it works in. Binance is incorporated in the Cayman Islands and has an office in Singapore. But the company says it doesn’t have a central headquarters, according to the report.

Binance spokeswoman Jessica Jung told Bloomberg that the company takes legal obligations “very seriously and engage with regulators and law enforcement in a collaborative fashion.”

“We have worked hard to build a robust compliance program that incorporates anti-money laundering principles and tools used by financial institutions to detect and address suspicious activity,” she said, per the report.

In other news, cryptocurrency-related crime was down in losses from hacks and theft in the first four months of the year U.S. News reported, citing CipherTrace. However, crime in the newly burgeoning “decentralized finance” (DeFi) space is reaching a new high.

DeFi applications work to facilitate crypto lending outside of the traditional banking routes, using an open-source code with algorithms setting rates in real time, based on supply and demand. Those numbers are up 650 percent from October, sitting at $86 billion, the report stated.

Larger crypto sector losses amounted to $1.9 billion in all of 2020, and crypto criminals got away with $432 million as of the end of April this year, with around half of that attributed to DeFi, according to the report.

Lastly, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), India’s central bank, has been urging lenders to sever ties with cryptocurrency exchanges even amid a boom in the market, Reuters reported.

That comes in spite of a recent ruling by the Supreme Court saying banks could work with the industry, the report stated.

India is currently looking at banning cryptocurrency by law, Reuters reported. The country intends to penalize those who deal with crypto. That would entail some of the strictest crackdowns on digital currencies, which have been increasing in popularity in recent months.

Previously, regulators tried to ban any bitcoin transactions from happening in banks, but that was overturned in March 2020, according to Reuters.

May 14, 2021 at 02:10AM