Australia’s securities regulator to monitor threats from ICOs and cryptos
The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC), as a part of its corporate action plan for the year 2018 – 2022, has added the monitoring of harmful threats from initial coin offerings (ICO) and cryptocurrencies as its main focus area.
Though Australia is not against crypto trading, ASIC is still not sure about digital economy and how it’s going to help in improving the overall financial sector.
In a corporate plan released on Friday, ASIC said that it is developing a new framework that will apply “the principles for regulating market infrastructure providers to crypto exchanges” and will intervene where “there is poor behavior and potential harm to consumers and investors.
ICOs under the scanner
The ASIC, during the month of May, opened up on examining into ICO issuers with a public notice that reveals it had noticed “misleading or deceptive” marketing statements.
“As a result of our inquiries, some issuers have halted their ICOs or have indicated the ICO structure will be modified,” said ASIC earlier in May.
The local cryptocurrency exchanges of Australia are regulated by the Australian Transactions and Reporting Analysis Centre (AUSTRAC), Australia’s financial intelligence agency. These crypto agencies are required to follow the standards of know-your-customer (KYC) and anti-money laundering put forward by AUSTRAC.
However, though ASIC hasn’t issued a regulation for crypto exchanges, it did publish guidelines for businesses wanting to conduct ICOs last year.
According to ASIC, as mentioned in their website “Issuing and trading of crypto-assets, and specifically ICOs, must be conducted in a manner that promotes consumer trust and confidence and complies with the relevant laws.”
The plan appears to be a timely one, as there has been an example of a public firm trying to raise capital through a token sale to fund the launch of a cryptocurrency exchange.
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