South Korea will reportedly begin implementing new regulations banning anonymous cryptocurrency exchange accounts on or around Jan. 20.
The proposal essentially strengthens "know-your-customer" rules already in existence for exchanges and banks, and will require cryptocurrency exchange users to connect a bank account with identifying information in order to deposit or withdraw funds.
Other regulations include strengthening anti-money laundering rules, as well as a ban on issuing new anonymous virtual accounts. The government's proposals could even go as far as shutting down cryptocurrency exchanges within the country.
South Korea will even restrict cryptocurrency advertising, he told reporters.
The country's Financial Intelligence Unit and the Financial Supervisory Service (FSS) will oversee the rollout of the new regulations, including by inspecting exchanges and banks to ensure institutions are complying with the rules.
"Companies existed during South Korea's IT bubble in the early 2000s, but that is not the case for bitcoin," he told reporters in a meeting.
Asked if the nation would launch its own official cryptocurrency exchange, Heung-sik said such a move would need "to be reviewed carefully."
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