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New York's Financial Regulator Puts Focus on Crypto Firms for Digital Reporting Initiative

The New York Department of Financial Services intends to digitize financial reporting in a tech initiative that will initially focus on cryptocurrency companies.

Oct 15, 2020 at 1:53 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 14, 2021 at 10:09 a.m. UTC

The New York Department of Financial Services (NYDFS) is seeking ways to digitize financial reporting in a new tech initiative that will initially focus on cryptocurrency companies.

  • NYDFS Superintendent Linda A. Lacewell announced the department's first-ever "TechSprint" collaborative initiative in a press statement on Thursday.
  • The initiative seeks solutions for digital reporting that would give the regulator "instant access" to data from firms under its supervision.
  • "The future of financial supervision is digital and needs to happen now," according to Lacewell.
  • DFS is making "progress towards automating the reporting" of financial data via the department's regulated entities, she said.
  • The move comes amid a growing trend by financial regulators around the globe to employ "TechSprints" as a tool to prototype technical solutions to regulatory issues, per the announcement.
  • "Virtual currency companies" were chosen first for the New York scheme due to their "advanced digital capabilities."
  • NYDFS also notes that, given that legacy reporting formats are often slow, periodic and laborious, data quality issues arise.
  • The department will collaborate with the Conference of State Bank Supervisors, an organization of state financial regulators, and the Alliance for Innovative Regulation to launch the TechSprint. 
  • Over a number of days, fintech professionals, regulators and experts working on regulatory compliance solutions will come together to propose solutions.
  • Those solutions could range from improvements to processes through to a functioning prototype of a reporting mechanism.
  • The end result will see a set of common standards hammered out to be provided in an open-source technical framework and later adopted by the DFS and potentially other regulators.
  • Design workshops are slated for the fourth financial quarter of this year with the TechSprint expected to occur in early 2021.

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