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The landscape of cryptocurrency regulation is a rapidly evolving one, with significant developments like the U.S. crackdown on Binance underscoring the seriousness with which authorities are now operating. The message is clear: regulation in the crypto world is imminent, and it’s essential for every user to understand what this means. This article will decode some of the most common jargon related to crypto regulation.


Decoding Key Terms in Crypto Regulation


AML (Anti-Money Laundering)

The FATF Standards: AML rules in crypto are established to prevent the conversion of illicitly obtained crypto into fiat currency. The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) sets the global AML standards, which require virtual asset service providers to implement robust AML measures. These include customer due diligence, transaction monitoring, and adherence to the ‘travel rule’.

KYC (Know Your Customer)

Identity Verification in Crypto: KYC is integral to crypto financial regulations. It involves identity verification processes that have now been adapted from traditional finance to the crypto industry, with varying degrees of complexity. The FATF’s expansion of KYC obligations to NFT marketplaces, DeFi protocols, and stablecoin providers in October 2021, has marked a significant milestone in regulatory clarity.

MAR (Market Abuse Regulations)

Protecting Market Integrity: MAR is designed to shield against manipulation and unfair practices. The upcoming Markets in Crypto-assets (MiCA) regulation and the UAE’s Virtual Asset Regulatory Authority (VARA) are part of global efforts to prevent market abuse. In regions without specific crypto MARs, traditional securities and commodity laws fill the gap.

Crypto Travel Rule

Combating Money Laundering: This rule is about preventing money laundering and terrorist financing by requiring transaction details from both sender and receiver for amounts above a certain threshold. The implementation varies by country, presenting a complex challenge for businesses that operate internationally.

VASP (Virtual Asset Service Providers)

Licensing and Regulation: VASPs are subject to FATF regulations. In Hong Kong, for example, VASPs must comply with rigorous licensing requirements, including holding 98% of digital assets in cold wallets and providing insurance and compensation plans, reflecting the global push for a regulated and secure crypto environment.

The Challenges and Opportunities

Keeping Up With Regulation: The crypto industry is in a constant state of flux, with rules continually evolving. Staying compliant requires significant investment in technology, expertise, and processes. It’s a dynamic game where businesses must remain agile and informed to keep pace with regulatory changes.


The maturation of the crypto industry necessitates a robust regulatory framework. Understanding KYC, AML, MAR, and the Crypto Travel Rule is no longer optional but essential for those looking to navigate this space successfully. The regulator’s goal is straightforward: to trace “The Story of Your Money.” As we embrace these changes, staying informed and compliant is the key to staying crypto-savvy.

Disclaimer: The content provided here is for informational purposes only and is not intended as financial advice. Readers are advised to conduct their own research before making any financial decisions. DYOR!