US Passes Crypto Task Force Bill to Combat Terrorist Financing

US House of Representatives passes the bill that will establish “Independent Financial Technology Task Force.” The task force is expected to emerge as the key US governmental body for fighting crypto terrorism financing.

28 September 2018 – The US House of Representatives passed a bill that would establish a cryptocurrency task force that aims to fight the terrorist use of cryptocurrencies. According to public records, House Resolution (H.R.) 5036 establishes an “Independent Financial Technology Task Force” to combat the illicit use of cryptocurrency.

US House of Representatives Passes Bill to Fight Crypto Use by Terrorists

The House Resolution (H.R.) 5036 represents a changed version of the bill that has been proposed by Rep. Ted Budd (R-NC) to the Committee on Financial Services earlier this year. The new version of the bill has been passed by the whole House by voice vote.

Just like the original version that was introduced on January 10, House Resolution (H.R.) 5036 sets out the same timeframes for scrutinizing and providing reports on the potential criminal use of cryptocurrencies. As per the document, the Task Force shall provide their findings “not later than 1 year after the date of the enactment” of the bill.

One of the key changes that have been introduced to the bill was the section dubbed “Preventing Rogue And Foreign Actors From Evading Sanctions.” This section outlines the obligation for regulators to report to the authorities “not later than 180 days” after enactment of the bill. The report should focus on the potential use cases of cryptocurrency and Blockchain as a means of sanctions evasion, terrorism financing, or money laundering.

Cryptocurrency and Blockchain “not innately illicit”

Following on this, the bill describes a reward policy for aiding regulators in providing information “leading to convictions related to the terrorist use of digital currencies.” H.R. 5036 proposes that the reward amount should not be higher than $450,000 to “any person who provides information leading to the conviction” of an individual engaged in the terrorist use of cryptocurrencies.

Earlier this month, officials from Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD) Center on Sanctions and Illicit Finance (CSIF), testified before Congress in regards to the crypto and terrorist financing. During the hearing before the Subcommittee on terrorism and Illicit Finance, the FDD CSIF director of analysis Yaya Fanusie stated that cryptocurrency and Blockchain “not innately illicit and should not be feared,” since any emerging technology can be utilized for both “good” and “ill”, “depending on the user.”

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