Digital exchanges join effort to bolster crypto regulation

Group is establishing a self-regulatory 'virtual commodity' organisation

Several major digital exchanges have signed up to a working group that aims to strengthen the cryptocurrency industry’s regulatory landscape and boost consumer protection.

Bitstamp, bitFlyer USA, Bittrex and Gemini Trust Company are the first participants in the Virtual Commodity Association (VCA) Working Group, whose goal is to establish an industry-sponsored, self-regulatory organisation to oversee virtual commodity marketplaces.

The group’s inaugural meeting will take place in September, when the exchanges will discuss guidelines on VCA membership; best practices and rules-based marketplaces that will promote fairness, transparency, risk management and liquidity; and member conflicts of interest, client disclosures and record keeping.

US leadership

The VCA was first proposed in March by Gemini Co-founder and President Cameron Winklevoss.

John Roth, Chief Compliance and Ethics Officer at Bittrex, claims that by working with the VCA the exchange can advance its shared goals of improving transparency, accountability and security across all virtual currency trading platforms. “This effort will also complement our discussions with regulators and legislators about developing a long-term solution that creates a fully-compliant environment for blockchain while encouraging innovation, economic growth, and US leadership in the industry,” he says.

Maria Filipakis, the VCA’s interim Executive Director, who was formerly an Executive Deputy Superintendent at the New York Department of Financial Services, adds: “I applaud the VCA and its members in their commitment to strengthen the digital asset industry’s regulatory landscape, rules for the protection of customers, and bring forth industry setting best practices and market transparency.”

The working group will provide an update on its progress following its inaugural meeting.

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