A committee composed of regulators drawn from various U.S. states is currently engaged in drafting the guidelines that will govern how to deal with bitcoin, ensuring users are protected without stifling the growth of the virtual currency
Most U.S. companies have integrated bitcoin as a payment mode. However, some users have fretted over the lack of clear policy guiding the usage of the popular digital currency.
“We may be looking at some type of model definitions, or model laws or regulations, and very likely recommendations to either our federal colleagues or to Congress,” David Cotney, Massachusetts Commissioner of Banks, was quoted by Reuters last Friday.
Cotney has been the head of the Emerging Payments Task Force, which is composed of 9 members drawn from the Conference of State Bank Supervisors (CSBS). He revealed that they expect to complete the work within a year. The task force is also looking into other new payment methods, such as PayPal and mobile phone payments.
Bitcoin is a virtual currency that is managed by the Bitcoin Foundation and created using high-powered computers. Furthermore, it isn’t controlled by any central bank or government. However, it has had a tumultuous existence since it was formed in 2009.
Mt. Gox, a Japanese bitcoin exchange, collapsed in February after it claimed that hackers stole $650 million worth of customer bitcoins. China has also mounted an intense crackdown aimed at smothering the growth of the virtual currency, which recently saw it ban local banks from handling bitcoin-related transactions.
States like New York and California have moved towards crafting their own bitcoin regulations. Benjamin Lawsky, New York’s Superintendent of Financial Services, revealed in January that he is working on “BitLicense”. To register for a free 2-week subscription to ForexMinute Premium Plan, visit www.forexminute.com/newsletter.
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