The cryptocurrency market isn’t looking good. In reality, it hasn’t looked good since the start of the year. In fact, it looks bearish considering the number of issues on regulations and hacking incidences. In less than two weeks, two South Korean cryptocurrency exchanges were hacked. And to give you just how bad things are, Bitcoin lost more than half of its value in 2018. It is currently nearing towards $6,000 even causing CNBC host to come up with a funeral gimmick for Bitcoin and the rest of the crypto market.
Aside from hacking incidences, regulations also affected the price of cryptocurrencies. But many experts consider this a good thing. In fact, Tom Lee suggests that the crypto market needs regulatory clarity in order to have another bull run.
And apart from the US Securities and Exchange Commission, Japan is also quite serious when it comes to their move towards regulating crypto exchanges in order to avoid hacking incidences, money laundering, and other illicit activities.
On June 19, five registered and licensed cryptocurrency exchanges including the likes of Quoine and bitFlyer were at the crosshair of regulators. They were asked to make sure that they overhaul their internal systems right after discovering the potential flaws that could be used in money laundering.
Just three days after the Japanese government along with the local financial authorities requested crypto exchanges to come up with a better infrastructure, bitFlyer, which is Japan’s biggest cryptocurrency exchange decided to suspend the registration of new accounts. It has overhauled its Anti-Money Laundering and Know Your Customer system.
A Unified Regulatory Approach?
Financial authorities from Japan asked the Financial Action Task Force to make a move in order to come up with unified crypto regulations. One of their goals is to also prevent the use of cryptocurrencies that are providing users extra anonymity. According to a Japanese Financial Services Agency spokesperson, “It’s nearly impossible for Japan to handle the problem alone. Even if trade is restricted to only domestic transfers or monitoring is enhanced, it’s still not enough to counter money laundering. It would best if all the group of 20 industrial and emerging nations and regions (G20) would take the same step towards prevention”.
There was even a report that saying that the Yakuza, the country’s biggest crime syndicate has been using cryptocurrency exchanges in order to launder money.
Another reason why Japanese financial regulators are looking to impose strict rules regarding cryptos is because of the number of hacking incidences that happened to different crypto exchanges. Major platforms such as Coincheck and Bithumb lost millions-worth of cryptocurrencies. And if you will look closely at these incidences, it is due to the holes in the systems of crypto exchanges.
Japan has been able to help the growth of the entire crypto industry. However, though regulatory clarity is needed according to experts, Japan’s move against money laundering practices caused Bitcoin price to drop by 8%. In fact, Bitcoin hit a four-month low of just around $6,092.38.But is this something temporary? Could this be a necessity before the next bull run?