NYDFS Releases BitLicense Comments


NYDFS Releases BitLicense Comments

ForexMinute.com – The New York Department of Financial Services (NYDFS) revealed around 3,700 BitLicense comments, which included letters from major US companies like Amazon, Western Union and Walmart.

The official statements given by these companies indeed reflected their seriousness towards BitLicense, as the new law will probably impact their future decisions, directly or indirectly. Amazon, while emphasizing on centralized virtual currencies like AmazonCoin, requested NYDFS to expand their definition for those payment methods, which do not pose the same money laundering risk that decentralized digital currencies pose. The company’s Associate General Counsel wrote:

“Amazon respectfully requests that the DFS expressly clarify that the following products are excluded from the definition of “virtual currency” in its final rulemaking: (1) “closed-loop” digital payment methods; and (2) prepaid access, stored value cards, or prepaid cards denominated in fiat currency.”

A similar opinion was given by the US’s biggest retail store Walmart which largely focused on knowing the BitLicense’s take on their gift cards – a fiat denominated, “centralized” virtual currency. “As I mentioned, Walmart is concerned that the proposed language, as written, could be construed to capture gift card,” the store’s representative wrote. “So maybe a simple statement that “gift certificates as that term is defined in NY Abandoned Property Law §103 are not considered to be Virtual Currency” tacked on to the part where they call out “affinity or rewards” programs would be perfect.”

Western Union’s Suggestion on BitLicense
Western Union submitted an extended comment on BitLicense, which included its concerns over the security of Bitcoin ATM kiosks users, and on the contradictions between the existing Money Transmission License and the new Virtual Currency License. Their statement reads:

“We are concerned, however, that the approach suggested in the Notice does not clearly address the interaction of VC (virtual currency) Licensees with New York money transmitted licensees (each, a “MT Licensee”) or provide enough clarity regarding select requirements applicable to VC Licensees, including the AML requirements.”

The updated BitLicense draft is scheduled to come out next year in January.

To contact the reporter of the story: Yashu Gola at yashu@forexminute.com