Policy Scoop with Aislinn Keely: Unpacking the FATF's guidance and its impact on the global crypto landscape

Episode 76 of Season 3 of The Scoop was recorded remotely with The Block’s reporter Aislinn Keely and Rick McDonell, Director of ACAMS & Former Executive Secretary of the FATF, Joseph Weinberg Co-Founder of Shyft, and David Carlisle, Director of Policy and Affairs at Elliptic.

Listen below, and subscribe to The Scoop on AppleSpotifyGoogle PodcastsStitcher or wherever you listen to podcasts. Email feedback and revision requests to [email protected].

This episode is brought to you by our sponsors BakktKraken and Masterworks

Bakkt® unlocks the $1.2+ trillion of digital assets that is currently held in cryptocurrencies, rewards and loyalty points, gaming assets and merchant stored value. We began in 2018 with the vision to bring trust and transparency to digital assets. Through the Bakkt Warehouse and Bakkt Bitcoin Futures and Options contracts, we serve institutional clients in an end-to-end regulated market with true price transparency. For consumers, Bakkt aggregates digital assets to enable instant liquidity and to empower users to trade, transfer and pay however they want. Visit Bakkt.com for more information

About Kraken
Whether you’re an experienced crypto trader or just starting out, Kraken has the tools to help you achieve financial freedom. With 50+ cryptocurrencies to choose from, industry-leading security and a wide variety of features to suit any investing strategy, Kraken puts the power in your hands to buy, sell and trade digital assets. Visit Kraken.com to get started today.

About Masterworks
Masterworks is democratizing the exclusive multi-trillion-dollar art world. Instead of needing to write a $10 million dollar check to buy one Picasso painting, you can buy shares of masterpiece paintings. Masterworks has securitized over $250 million worth of art for their 235,000 members and was recently valued at over $1 billion, making them the first and only unicorn in the alternative investing space. Invest like a billionaire today with a few easy clicks at masterworks.io/scoop

The crypto world has only just begun digesting the finalized crypto reporting requirements from the Financial Action Task Force, or FATF.

The years-long process began in the summer of 2019 when the FATF made public its initial version that called for what it dubbed virtual asset service providers, or VASPs, to undertake an unprecedented degree of information-sharing about their customers and the transactions they conduct. Since then, the guidance has gone through numerous iterations and accounted for emerging use cases like decentralized finance (DeFi) and non-fungible tokens (NFTs), to name a few. 

At the heart of this framework is the so-called travel rule, requiring businesses that facilitate the movement to collect and share information about the parties to a transaction. How VASPs – like exchanges – will comply with this as FATF-supporting countries go live with the requirements is an active and evolving question. 

In this special episode of The Scoop, The Block reporter Aislinn Keely breaks down the implications of the FATF framework and how it might shape the evolving regulatory landscape in the United States.


Keep up with the latest news, trends, charts and views on crypto and DeFi with a new biweekly newsletter from The Block's Frank Chaparro

By signing-up you agree to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy
By signing-up you agree to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy

To unpack the questions at hand, Keely spoke with former FATF executive secretary and current ACAMS director Rick McDonell, Shyft co-founder Joseph Weinberg and Elliptic director of policy and affairs David Carlisle. 

This special episode takes a closer look at:

  • What is FATF and why it matters
  • The implications for less-easily-categorized decentralized finance (DeFi) entities
  • The travel rule solutions being developed today
  • How the FATF framework will impact enforcement efforts in the US

© 2023 The Block. All Rights Reserved. This article is provided for informational purposes only. It is not offered or intended to be used as legal, tax, investment, financial, or other advice.

About Author

Aislinn Keely is a reporter on The Block's policy team holding down the legal beat. She covers court decisions, bankruptcies, regulatory actions and other key moments in the legal sphere, putting them in context for the wider crypto industry. Before The Block, she lent her voice to the NPR affiliate WFUV and helmed Fordham University's student newspaper. Send tips or thoughts on all things policy and legal to [email protected] or follow her on Twitter for updates @AislinnKeely.