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Blockchain ID Verification

Identity Verification Process for Crypto Exchanges

Since the beginning of 2021, cryptocurrency exchanges have been growing at an alarming pace. And there are over 100 million crypto users in January 2022 itself. While the market has slowed down, the crypto industry is still growing, and chances are there will be another huge spike in the number of customers. 

To handle these increases in trading consumers, crypto companies need to have infrastructure and technology. Compared to stock markets, and other exchanges that have had several years to build a proper infrastructure, these companies don’t have the infrastructure to handle customer transactions. Even though there has been a crypto downturn, the market is expected to turn back again.

This is why crypto exchanges need to have an identity verification process. Most of the time, this makes the onboarding process tough for customers. These ID procedures, if not completely automated, slow down the customer onboarding process, which leads to an enhanced customer drop-off rate. 

In this article, we will mention how some of the best crypto exchanges handle the ID verification process. What steps are they using, and how easy it is to sign up for the customers.

Best Crypto Platforms with Identity Verification

1. Coinbase Verification

Coinbase was founded in 2012, and it’s a US-based digital currency and wallet platform. It has over 56 million users and has traded over $335 billion worth of digital currencies in the first quarter of 2021. In late 2021, the company went public, which is the first platform to do so. 

While Coinbase has some account limitations, these limits are determined based on the level of verification that’s added to the account. These include account age, purchase history, payment methods, and other factors. 

The type of verification that Coinbase offers includes phone number, personal details, and photo ID. If you live in the USA, then you’ll also be asked to provide your SSN. 

2. Kraken Verification

Kraken is a US-based crypto exchange platform, and it was founded in 2011 and has over 50 currencies. Kraken claims that they’re one of the largest Bitcoin exchanges in Euro volume. The exchange has four levels of accounts with each one of them offering a different type of verification requirements. The levels are:

  • Starter
  • Express
  • Intermediate
  • Pro

The account levels depend on the level of access your account will have. Each level offers more funding options and higher limits with Pro being the highest level. 

A user must be at least 18 years old to register and use an account. All the accounts need an email address, full name, date of birth, phone number, and physical address for verification purposes. Except for starter accounts, they also need to provide employment information and SSN.

The intermediate and Pro accounts need to provide a valid ID, proof of address, and a face photo. Pro accounts need to fill in the KYC questionnaire. 

3. Binance Verification

Binance is a famous crypto exchange platform that combines digital technology and finance. According to Yahoo Finance, Binance is the world’s biggest crypto exchange when it comes to trading volume. 

Binance has three levels of verification with respective deposit and withdrawal limits:

  • Basic: Requires name, address, date of birth, and nationality, and has a lifetime limit of USD 300.
  • Intermediate: Requires an uploaded picture of ID documentation such as passport, ID card, or driver’s license.
  • Advanced: Requires proof of address documentation such as bank statements and utility bills.

4. Bitfinex Verification

Bitfinex is another crypto exchange that came into existence in 2012. They state that they’re one of the largest exchanges by volume for trading Bitcoin against the US dollar. It offers exchange trading for 38 currencies/tokens and also provides margin trading, margin funding, and an over-the-counter market for large trades. To withdraw or add fiat currencies to an account, ID and document verification are needed. Most of the time, this verification process takes up to 2-3 days. 

Although, a user can easily deposit, trade, and withdraw cryptocurrencies immediately upon account opening with a basic account that only requires a valid email address. Individual account requirements tend to differ on the type of account you’re choosing:

  • Age: you have to be at least 18 years old to have an account
  • Personal Information: A user’s telephone number, email address, and residential address
  • Identification: Two types of government-issued ID with photo, such as passport, national ID card, driver’s license, residency card, employment permit card

5. OKEx Verification

OKEx was founded in 2014, and it’s one of the biggest digital currency exchanges by trading volume. It serves millions of users in over 100 countries and it operates out of Hong Kong. At OKEx, the identity verification process contains a couple of rules and procedures that facilitate a secure trading environment for our users, who need to perform ID verification for the following activities:

  • Buying currencies on OKEx with fiat currencies, for which users may need to perform ID verification
  • Making daily crypto withdrawals of more than 10 BTC

OKEx doesn’t require identity verification for users to deposit or trade crypto on OKEx. For individuals, there are several levels of ID verification:

  • Level 1: In level one, the users are needed to enter their nationality, name, and document identification number
  • Level 2: In level two, users are required to verify themselves with photo identification, and they’re also needed to perform facial verification.
  • Level 3: After completing the first two levels, users have to read the disclaimer on OKEx’s mobile app or web page to complete the third level of ID verification.
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Blockchain

What is Blockchain? How does it Work in Favor of Business?

Blockchain for business is invaluable for entities that transact with each other. The distributed ledger technology allows participants to access the same information at any time to improve efficiency, build trust and remove friction. Blockchain also allows businesses to rapidly scale and perform various tasks across industries. Blockchain for small business offer four main benefits:

  • Consensus: Shared decentralized ledgers are updated only after the transaction is validated by all involved participants. 
  • Replication: Once a block (a block of information) is created, it is automatically created across all the ledgers for all participants in that channel. Every involved party in a business can access and share a “trusted reality” of the transactions.
  • Immutability: More blocks can be added to the chain but it is impossible to remove a block, so every transaction can be recorded permanently which increases trust among the stakeholders.
  • Security: Only trusted and authorized parties are allowed to create blocks and access the information and data stored in them. This makes blockchain technology incredibly secure.

How to Implement Blockchain for Business?

Blockchain has left the crypto market and it has gone mainstream. Industries around the world are using blockchain to transform their business operations. Blockchain provides a sense of trust, reliability, and efficiency that wasn’t possible earlier on. With the use of blockchain, businesses can reinvent the supply chain, food distribution, financial services, government data management, retail services and so much more. The benefits of blockchain in business are seemingly endless, the only limitation is implementation.

Innovative Applications of Blockchain for Businesses

Widespread blockchain use for business will change the way your business runs its day-to-day operations. Here are the most common uses of blockchain technology for business:

1. Smart Contracts

The release of the Ethereum project reinvented the word “smart contract.” The project is “a decentralized platform that runs smart contracts, applications that run exactly as programmed without any possibility of downtime, fraud or third-party interference.”

‘Smart Contracts’ are automated computer programs that can carry out the terms of any contract. What makes it even better is that these contracts will be unbreakable. Top companies like Slock, which is an Ethereum-enabled internet-of-things platform, leverage this application to allow customers to rent bicycles where they can unlock a smart lock after both parties agree to the terms of the contract. This is one of the best uses of blockchain for business.

2. Cloud Storage

Cloud storage is another brilliant application of blockchain for small businesses. One of the most innovative brands in the market named Storj claimed that “Simply using excess hard drive space, users could store the traditional cloud 300 times over.” 

The average cost of blockchain regarding cloud storage is more than $20 billion. By integrating blockchain into cloud storage, significantly reduces the cost of storing data for companies and personal users. If that’s not one of the best benefits of blockchain in business then what is?

3. Faster, Cheaper Payments

Blockchain started with Bitcoin, also it shouldn’t come as a surprise that Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies can be used to initiate faster payments. Making crypto payments on the blockchain is beneficial when you have international or remote workers. Blockchain allows you to pay the salary of your employees in less than an hour without outrageous transaction fees associated with banking systems.

Paying employees by using cryptocurrency may help you save money in numerous ways. Plus, with blockchain, you can keep track of your transactions and payments. This way, you won’t ever overpay on your taxes or underpay. If you’re wondering how to implement blockchain in business, then you should try to move in this direction.

4. Improved Marketing Campaigns

Good marketing is crucial for your business, but the number of businesses that are competing in the space makes it harder for your business to stand out from the crowd. Businesses are usually familiar with using social media, billboards, and other forms of marketing. Blockchain may make your marketing efforts more effective. 

Blockchain can be used by marketers to keep track of client information and consumer behavior. Using this data, skilled marketers can build robust marketing campaigns that provide better ROI. Additionally, blockchain allows marketers to verify that the traffic they’re getting is real people. 

5. Fraud Mitigation

Banks, financial institutions, and other businesses can use blockchain technology for businesses to identify with whom they are working. Blockchain facilitates reliable ID Management to prevent fraud. If customer information is stored on a blockchain network, it mitigates the risk of identity theft, money laundering, financial fraud, and so on.

Any information placed on the blockchain can’t be changed, it allows people to take control of their data. Once a customer’s identity verification has been completed, other parties can use the data to confirm if they are working with a real person and not an identity thief.

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Blockchain

Blockchain Technology, and how does it work?

You must have heard about “blockchains” in the context of Bitcoin, Ethereum, and other cryptocurrencies. You probably must have also seen how many people have been raving about this technology. But why, what exactly is so special about this technology? Its link with cryptocurrencies has also led to many people believing that blockchain is Bitcoin. So they think that they’re getting excited about cryptocurrency. But nope, blockchain is a technology that is used in the implementation of these cryptocurrencies.

So, if you’re a newbie to this amazing new technology, read ahead and know about blockchain and its development process better.

What is blockchain technology?

Blockchain technology, also called Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT), is a decentralized digital ledger. It is a system of recording information so that it is difficult, if not impossible, to change, hack or cheat the system.

Primarily, it is a digital ledger of transactions distributed across the entire network on computer systems on the blockchain. Each block in the chain holds information on the transactions. Every time there’s a new transaction, it is recorded on the ledger of every participant. So, it is a decentralized database that is managed by the participants and hence the name, distributed ledger system.

This technology has three main ideas: unalterable history of transactions, transparency in use, and cryptographic signature. An analogy to understand this technology better is Google Docs. Suppose you create a document and share it with your friends. Here, the document is distributed and not copied and transferred. So, this way, you’ve created a decentralized distribution chain where everyone is accessing the document simultaneously.

There’s no waiting for a person to finish making changes so that others could start. All the modifications in the document are recorded in real-time, so all the changes are transparent. Blockchain is, of course, more complex, but the analogy explains the three main ideas of the technology.

Key Elements of a Blockchain:

  • Distributed ledger technology: All the blockchain participants have access to the distributed ledger and its records. The transactions are recorded only once with the shared ledger, so there are no efforts wasted in duplication.
  • Immutable records: once a transaction is recorded, no participant can make any changes in the ledger. Even in the case of an erroneous trade, a reverse transaction is made, and both are recorded.
  • Smart contracts: A set of rules are auto-implemented for speedy transactions.

How does blockchain technology work?

  • Each transaction is recorded as a “Block”:

A transaction implies a movement of a tangible (product) or intangible (intellectual) asset. So the block holds all the transaction data and answers everything- who, what, when, where, amount, and even the condition (temperature).

  • Each and every block is connected to the block before and after it

The blocks form a chain of data as the ownership of the asset changes. The blocks are securely linked together & record the exact time and sequence of transactions. There’s no scope for any alteration or any new block inserted between two linked blocks.

  • Transactions are chained together: blockchain

Each new block strengthens and verifies the previous block and hence, the entire blockchain. So, the blockchain shows its key strength, immutability, and brings forth a trustworthy ledger.

What are the types of consensus protocols?

Consensus protocols are used to validate transactions in a blockchain. A few are mentioned as follows:

  • Proof of Work (PoW): it is the original consensus algorithm in the blockchain network. It is used for a transaction’s confirmation and creation of a new block to the chain.
  • Proof of stake (PoS): it is used to reach distributed consensus and validate transactions. There are several other forms of Proof of Stake protocols like Delegated PoS, which improves the speed of block creation and leased PoS, which consumes less energy. 
  • Proof of elapsed time (PoET): this algorithm works on permissioned blockchain, and you need permission to access the chain. It covers transparency with a specific technique and assures secure login.
  • Byzantine Fault Tolerance (BFT): as per this algorithm, two nodes in a network can securely interact knowing that they display the same data. There are several other forms of BFT, like Practical BFT, Delegated BFT, simplified BFT and Asynchronous BFT.

What are the applications of blockchain technology?

Applications of a blockchain are as follows:

  • Smart Contracts: it is a code that is auto-executed when specific conditions are met during a transaction.
  • Sharing economy: you can directly engage in a transaction without the involvement of a third party (e.g., banks).
  • Supply chain audits: you can easily cross-check the claims made by the companies about their products. With the help of distributed ledgers, you can easily & quickly trace the products within the supply chain in real-time.
  • Intellectual property protection: with the help of smart contracts, you can protect copyrights & automate content sales. Thereby protecting your intellectual property.

What are the types of blockchain platforms?

Many types of blockchain platforms are available, each satisfying a particular development need. Some of the major blockchain platforms are:

  • Ethereum: open-source blockchain platform on which you can run smart contracts on a custom blockchain.
  • EOS: with EOS, you can design vertical & horizontal scaling of decentralized apps (DApps).
  • Stellar: it is an open-source distributed payment ledger that allows you to connect with payment systems.

What value does blockchain add to your platform?

  • More Transparency: the history of transactions is always transparent with blockchain. It is a distributed ledger, and all the members share the same updates in a ledger. The consensus on the network validates all the updates. Thereby, the data is secure & accurate.
  • Enhanced Traceability: you can easily track and manage your supply chain.
  • Increased Speed: the current processes are paper-based and time-consuming as they involve third parties & duplication of efforts. All these problems are eliminated with blockchain, and processes pick up speed. 
  • Reduced Costs: with blockchains, third-party involvement is eliminated. You also don’t have to engage in making documentation or checking them before transactions. And that results in cost elimination.

What is the blockchain development process?


You can refer to a custom software development company that can help you through the development process. The blockchain development process involves 9 stages:

  • Goal identification

Make a problem statement listing all the issues you wish to resolve with your proposed solution. The solution should be beneficial and improve your business. Analyze whether you should switch to blockchain technology or make a new application from scratch.

  • Select the right blockchain platform

Once you’re sure you need a blockchain solution, you need to select the right blockchain platform. The chosen platform should meet your business requirements. The choice should be driven by the problems you want to resolve, like consensus mechanisms.

  • Brainstorming ideas

The next step involves drafting business requirements and brainstorming ideas. Decide which technology components should be added as on-chain or off-chain entities on the proposed blockchain system. Create a roadmap to build the project in time. Create DFDs, conceptual workflows, and other documents to create your blockchain application.

You should decide on the language you’re going to use to develop the frontend, backend, and servers as well. For example, you can choose angular development or React Js web development services for the frontend.

  • Proof of concept

With proof-of-concept, you decide the practical applications and viability of a project. You can do that by either developing a prototype or via theoretical buildup. In the theoretical build-up, you theoretically make up different use cases to understand the feasibility of the application and explain the project’s scope and parameters.

  • Visual & technical designs

This step involves designing the look & feel of your application and making technical designs to understand the application’s technology architecture. So, you’ll create a user interface for each component of your application. You will also design APIs to integrate the UI to run an application in the back-end.

  • Development

At this stage, the actual development of your application will start. The developer needs to stick to the decided design and blueprint of the application.

The development of blockchain technology is a challenging task which is why it takes a lot of time to build it. Since blockchains are immutable ledgers, it is almost impossible to correct any corrupted data. Even to deliver a fix, you need to coordinate with all the parties in the blockchain.

So this step needs to be executed with extreme care.

  • Testing

At this stage, you’ll test whether the developed application does exactly what it is expected to do—nothing more and nothing less. Testing blockchain applications is similar to testing normal applications with a few more metrics added. For example:

  • Chain size: longer chain implies more data in it, and that implies more space requirement in the datastore. We need to determine how much space a blockchain can take after a period of time.
  • Throughput: what is the number of transactions per second (TPS). A high TPS is good, but that also means a more network load and the inability of every node to catch up.
  • Security & cryptography: code needs to be checked regularly to ensure its flawless.
  • Data integrity: all the data on the blockchain should be consistent.
  • Data propagation: distribution of data from one node to another without disruption.

Multiple software testing methods can be employed, like manual and automation testing. 

  • Deployment

The deployment phase refers to deploying the final developed blockchain application to the customer.

  • Maintenance

The maintenance stage involves providing training, customer support, and launching updates.

Blockchain technology offers a myriad of benefits, it is secure, reliable, speeds up business transaction processes, and so much more. The idea of incorporating blockchain technology in your business is appealing and indeed good. But you should know that it takes a lot of time to build an application and for everyone to warm up with it. Building blockchain software is an extensive process, and so you need to clearly define your requirements and then start with the process.

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Blockchain

How Cryptocurrencies are Disrupting Money Transfers?

Using traditional methods for money transfers can be monotonous and slow. Sending or receiving money using regular bank services can take 3-5 business days. Innovative technologies such as digital wallets, third-party payment apps can transfer money faster. New banking infrastructure is disrupting the current financial landscape to improve the financial lives of millions all over the globe. The rise of cryptocurrencies has had a similar impact on the financial industry.

What are Cryptocurrencies?

In simple words, a cryptocurrency is a digital or virtual currency that’s secured by cryptography. Cryptography makes sure that the currency can’t be counterfeited or spent twice. Almost all cryptocurrencies are decentralized networks powered by blockchain technology, a distributed ledger protected by several networks of computers. One of the reasons behind the popularity of cryptocurrencies is that they aren’t issued by a central or regulated entity like banks and other financial institutions. This lack of centralization protects them from manipulation and government interference. 

Cryptocurrencies are frameworks that allow users to make faster and extremely secure payments online that are denominated in terms of “tokens”. The first-ever blockchain-based crypto was Bitcoin, which is still one of the biggest cryptos in the market currently. 

Cryptocurrencies can enhance digital payments without the need to have an intermediary like a bank or credit card company. Payments made by cryptocurrencies are more secure than payments made by banks and financial institutions. 

Cryptocurrency apps and platforms provide the user with virtual currencies and users can send these currencies to whosoever they wish to. Fund transfers are completed with minimal processing fees, thus allowing users to avoid the huge amounts charged by banks and other financial institutions for wire transfers. 

While they sound great in theory, the semi-anonymous nature of cryptocurrencies makes them a hub for illegal activities such as money laundering and tax evasion. But one of the primary reasons behind crypto’s popularity is the anonymity offered, ensuring privacy and security. Some cryptocurrency platforms offer better security and protection than others. 

Bitcoin, for instance, is an incredibly poor choice for conducting illegal activities as the Bitcoin analysis department has helped authorities in prosecuting criminals.

Blockchain and Banking: Role of Decentralized Currency in Financial Services

Blockchain technology allows untrusted parties to come together without using a middleman. By offering a ledger that belongs to no one, blockchain technology has the capability of providing unique technologies. Use cases that don’t require a high degree of decentralization can benefit by leveraging ‘distributed ledger technology (DLT).” Businesses can establish better customer monitoring by using data sharing and collaboration methods. 

Blockchain technology can disrupt the banking industry massively by providing better key banking technologies such as:

  • Payments: By using cryptocurrency for payments, customers can experience faster and better digital payments with low fees. 
  • Securities: By tokenizing the traditional securities such as stocks, bonds, and alternative assets and placing them on public blockchains.
  • Loans and Credit: By eliminating the need for intermediaries from the loans and credit industry, blockchain technology can make it possible to provide better lending options and lower interest rates. 

Customer KYC and Fraud Prevention: By collecting and storing customer information on decentralized channels, banks and other financial institutions can make it easier to verify customer information during onboarding. This can even enhance the level of security in sharing information between financial institutions.

Beyond the Hype: Cryptocurrencies and Blockchain Technologies

While it’s true that cryptocurrencies and blockchain have the capability of disrupting financial institutions, these disruptions don’t happen overnight. The cryptocurrency industry has a long way to go before becoming a streamlined service that can be used in enhancing the workflow of the financial industry. 

It may be possible for cryptocurrencies and blockchain to shift the tides of a few key services provided by banks, but this will require significant improvement in the current landscape. The future remains unclear to what degree the banks will embrace these technologies. One thing remains clear though, cryptocurrencies will have a huge impact on how the digital payment framework runs in the financial industry. 

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Blockchain

Blockchain for Fraud Prevention: How Blockchain Works?

Blockchain technology has been around for a long time, and it is still growing. A lot of people wonder how does blockchain secure data and how blockchain works. Regardless of all its benefits, there are a lot of mixed feelings towards blockchain technology. It doesn’t matter how mixed the reviews of the technology are, the role of blockchain against fraud and the role in the global economic landscape is great. 

The growth of blockchain first came into the limelight with the rise of Bitcoin. If you’re not into cryptocurrency, you should know about the blockchain for fraud prevention. 

How Blockchain Works?

At first glance, blockchain looks complicated, but the core concept of how blockchain works is really simple. A blockchain is a type of database, to completely understand what is blockchain technology, you need to understand what is a database. 

A database is a collection of information that’s stored on a computer system. Any information that’s stored on a database is stored in a table-type manner for easier searching and filtering of data. Now you may wonder, what is the difference between a spreadsheet and a database. 

The major difference between a spreadsheet and a database is that a spreadsheet is made for a single person or a small group of people. These people can store and access limited information. In comparison to that, a database is designed to store much larger amounts of information, that can be quickly accessed, filtered, and changed quickly by any number of users at the same time. 

Huge databases achieve this functionality by using data on servers that are built on powerful computers. While a spreadsheet database can be accessed by several people, it is often owned by businesses. Now that you understand what is a database, we can move on to “how does blockchain secure data”.

How Does Blockchain Secure Data?

One of the major differences between a typical database and a blockchain is the way the data is structured. A blockchain collects information together in groups that are known as blocks, these blocks hold a set of information. Blocks have a specific amount in which information can be stored, when the storage is filled, they are chained to the previously connected blocks, all of which form a chain of data, which is known as the blockchain. 

So the question remains, how does blockchain secure data? Major blockchain features and benefits account for the issues of security and trust in multiple ways. First, new blocks are always stored linearly and chronologically. The new information is always added to the “end” of the blockchain. 

After a new block has been ended to the back of the blockchain, it is almost impossible to go back and alter the contents of the block unless it is the major consensus to do so. The reason it is considered secure is that it each block contains its own hash, alongside the hash of the block before. A hash code is built using a mathematical function that turns information into a string of numbers and letters. This is how blockchain works in banking and other financial transactions like bitcoins.

Types of Identity Thefts

Another common type of online fraud is identity theft, the growing rate of identity theft is alarming. Most people aren’t even aware that their identity has been stolen after the damage has been done. Now that we know how does blockchain secures data, we can discuss how blockchain prevents identity theft. Here are the most common types of identity thefts. 

1. Driver’s License Identity Theft

Anyone that has access to your driving license can make use of your sensitive information and commit fraudulent activities. They can open credit card accounts or use the stolen identity theft if caught for reckless driving. 

2. E-Commerce Fraud

Online identity theft is basically cybercriminals stealing your information like payment details and credentials. Using this information, these criminals can make all kinds of unauthorized transactions. All these transactions will end up hurting your bank balance. This is one of the most common types of identity theft. 

3. Mail Identity Theft

Your mailbox can be vulnerable to all kinds of cyberattacks. One out of 3 identity theft is done via email. Your mailbox contains all kinds of sensitive information including bank information, several login details, or insurance data. This crucial information can be used for all kinds of fraudulent information. 

4. Social Security Number Theft

The social security number is provided to a citizen from the time of their birth. The nine-digit number contains information like financial records, including bank details and a person’s earnings. Now imagine someone gets hold of your social security number, they can use the information for all kinds of purposes. 

If they can use your financial information, they can fill in fake account opening forms or even withdraw money from a person’s account using social security number. More than that, attackers can use your social security number to gain a tax refund. Social security number theft is another common type of identity theft.

5. Synthetic Identity Theft

Synthetic identity theft is a tricky type of identity theft. It is where an attacker mixes stolen information with fake details to create a new fake identity for committing a crime. This newly made identity can then be used to execute all kinds of fraudulent practices. 

How Blockchain Prevent Identity Theft?

Identity theft is a part of online fraud, and it is growing at an alarming pace. A lot of people nowadays are aware of data breaches, but not many are aware that identity theft occurs every two seconds around the globe. In this perilous time, the need for securing one’s identity is crucial, and the way to do that is by safeguarding your documents. Now that you know about types of identity theft, here’s how blockchain prevents identity theft

The blockchain against fraud technology has been taken into consideration since the rise of cybersecurity. The incredible technology holds brilliant potential for securing sensitive data from malicious activities. 

Since blockchain contains digital assets including documents that are secured via powerful cryptographic keys. This is one of the primary reasons why it is harder for attackers to manipulate information stored in the blockchain. The data is stored on multiple computers on a blockchain network, so if someone wants to access crucial information, they will have to gain access on all computers which is almost impossible in all cases. Even if the hackers happen to gain access to data, any change they make to the data will be highlighted in the information. This is what blockchain unique and suitable to secure data. Now you know how blockchain prevents identity theft. 

Storing any identity information on a blockchain will help both government and the public to prevent identity theft. This is how blockchain works, and the blockchain features and benefits are slowly causing it to come into mainstream adoption. 

While blockchain is still a growing technology, it has countless possibilities for securing data. As the current measures for identity information storage are being attacked and breached, the use of blockchain for fraud prevention is at an all-time high. 

Blockchain Features And Benefits

1. Blockchain Is Distributed

A blockchain is a type of distributed digital ledger which contains transaction data that is hosted on a peer-to-peer network. There is no centralized administrator so there’s no one point of failure that can be accessed for information breach. Instead of a single point, the management and authorization are spread all over the network. 

2. Blockchain Is Unyielding

Another blockchain feature and benefit is that any transaction or information recorded on the blockchain is unchangeable as the information can’t be deleted or changed. While you can create a new transaction to change the state of any asset, the new information will just be added to the chain. 

3. Blockchain can be Permissioned

Businesses of all kinds tend to deal with a lot of confidential data and they can’t have just about anyone access the vital information. So they have to find some way to make sure that outsiders can’t access their data. This is where permissions come into play. You should know that not all blockchain is permissioned. This is why permission networks can be a great solution for fraud prevention because they can restrict who can access the data. 

How DIRO Makes Use of Blockchain For Document Verification?

Till now we have discussed, how does blockchain secure data, how blockchain work, the types of identity theft, and how blockchain prevent identity theft. A major part of all the information and the data breach are documented, most of the online frauds are conducted by using fake or tempered documents. 

A person who steals an identity can open a new bank account and use that bank account for many fraudulent activities. That’s where the innovative technology for document verification by DIRO comes in. It verifies any online original information on the web with automatic user consent and impersonation checks. You can verify any bank statements, proof of address, student certificates and so much more. 

Once DIRO verifies a piece of information, it provides a trusted certificate that ensures a document is original. This original document can then be shared in the form of a PDF. DIRO provides the digital document with a unique hash, which then is placed on a blockchain. use this information to verify the documents that are already on the blockchain. 

So banks, financial institutions, and others can drop this PDF into DIRO’s verification engine, which verifies the information against the blockchain. DIRO’s original documents are much more secure to share as the information can’t be tampered with by attackers or anyone else. Organizations can use DIRO’s software to minimize online fraud. 

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Blockchain KYC/KYB

Blockchain Technology for KYC Verification

Blockchain is a good solution for KYC verification, not a lot of people would agree with it but using blockchain for KYC is a crucial step in ensuring secure and fast compliance. With the pandemic changing industry standards, KYC automation stands to revolutionize payments, customer onboarding, and so on. It only makes sense to use the most secure technology, “blockchain,” for KYC compliance. 

Blockchain is a decentralized ledger that can help financial institutions, banks, merchants, and so on to streamline the KYC verification process. Here’s why you should use blockchain technology for KYC verification. 

Current Landscape of KYC Industry

It is easy for banks and financial institutions to authenticate customer identities using government-issued ID documents including driver’s licenses, social security numbers, passports, etc. However, the biggest challenge lies in establishing the authentication of other ID sources. Having inefficient KYC verification solutions also leads to an increased rate of financial fraud such as money laundering. 

Regardless of the use case, verifying customer identities using Know Your Customer or KYC verification, is a long and monotonous process. Apart from a huge amount of paperwork, a lack of transparency in the procedure of the use of personal data collected from customers has led to a lack of trust in the process. 

Regulatory bodies all over the world are trying their best to combat financial terrorism and money laundering, which is a highly expensive process. According to reports, firms all over the globe spend over $10 billion on AML compliance annually. 

This volatile environment, with complexity and uncertainty, is the current landscape of KYC compliance. Blockchain KYC verification is a way to fix the problem of less trust and inefficient policies. 

Changes in KYC Environment- Integration of Blockchain

For decades, financial institutions and regulatory bodies have been trying to find viable solutions for KYC and identity verification. Fortunately, blockchain technology came out as a solution.

Blockchain’s role in KYC verification is simple and elegant. As a decentralized ledger technology, blockchain technology will allow for the collection and storage of data from multiple governments and private data portals into a single immutable, secure database. Complying with KYC regulations and authenticating customer identities using blockchain technologies can be faster, easier, safer, and cost-saving than the traditional verification process.

How Can Blockchain Help with KYC Verification?

In the upcoming time, blockchain-based technologies will help bring down cost savings in an industry that utilizes ID verification. Let’s dive deeper into the benefits of blockchain technology for KYC verification:

1. Distributed User Data Collection

A KYC verification system based on blockchain technology will aid financial institutions in enhancing the ID verification process. This is because currently the data is collected and sorted with a centralized system. Access to this data requires KYC providers to share their customer data with companies needing access to it.

With the integration of a blockchain solution to handle the KYC process, customer data for verification is available on a decentralized network and then can be accessed by third parties directly after permission has been given.

2. Centralization of Controls and Risks

By limiting human interference in the KYC and customer verification process, it is easy for FIs to reduce the risk of fraud to a certain extent. This can happen by achieving standardization within the industry overnight. Blockchain allows key regulator concerns to be solved, such as automating the AML customer risk rating process.

Blockchain-based KYC and AML systems have the potential to change industry tides and how banks and financial institutions tackle identity and onboarding.

3. Communication and Transparency

One of the biggest problems with the present KYC landscape is the lack of transparency between customers and businesses. Blockchain will facilitate active monitoring of customers from onboarding till the end of the business-customer relationship.

The immutable nature of blockchain is vital in building trust between all the parties involved in the KYC process. The ability to trust data stored on KYC blockchain software solutions removes the need for secondary validation processes or cross-checking.

Finally, a distributed ledger system makes the reporting and communication processes more efficient, thus saving time and money. Since involved parties can access reliable data, processes, mistakes, and fraud can be detected much more easily.

4. Suspicious Activity Reporting

Currently, doing verification checks during customer onboarding takes weeks at a time, this proves to be extremely expensive for businesses, and staying compliant becomes tougher with the growing costs. 

With a shared ledger, where the data can be managed and accessed by all involved parties, the process of KYC could be easily monitored. Any change to the data of a user will be accessible by all parties, so it is next to impossible to conduct data fraud. Having instant access to a shared ledger will help institutions save time during fraud detection and reporting. 

5. Comprehensive Authentication Process

A decentralized verification technology will help financial institutions quickly verify if a person is who he/she claims to be. This is vital for fraud prevention and compliance with KYC & AML regulations. 

The level of security and trust offered by Blockchain technology reduces the risk of fraud in certain scenarios. It may be possible for fraudsters to get access to sensitive data if a customer’s device is stolen, but they won’t be able to change any data on the blockchain, which leads to fraud prevention. Blockchain KYC verification solutions can change the workflow of the banking industry drastically due to their immutability and increased level of customer satisfaction.

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Blockchain

Crypto Regulations 2021: How Digital Currency Providers Can Stay Compliant?

Since cryptocurrency and blockchain technology has become mainstream, a lot of industry patterns have changed. Bitcoin’s sudden success in 2019 became the reason for the development of more than 2,000 cryptocurrencies. There is mixed opinion about the trail of digital funds, most governments are hesitant about the use of cryptocurrencies. Digital assets (cryptocurrencies) offer anonymity, so cryptocurrencies can be used for money laundering, terrorist funding, and so on. As the market value and popularity of crypto are growing, investors worldwide are seeing it as a good investment option. Regulations surrounding the crypto industry are also growing at an exponential rate, if some challenges are met with strict regulations, cryptocurrencies can change the current flow of the banking industry. 

The U.S government has taken stern measures in ensuring cryptocurrency regulations. Individual states in the U.S and the EU can impose their regulatory laws regarding crypto. The U.S government has shown a positive approach towards cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology. In 2019, the SEC launched a platform where brokers can trade Bitcoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash, Ripple coin, and so on. 

Despite the trust in digital currency, the U.S Government has some concerns regarding the protection of the users. Some of the major concerns regarding crypto are:

  • Crypto-asset funds provide users with a huge level of anonymity. This level of anonymity works in the favor of fraudsters, money launderers, and those who fund terrorist organizations. 
  • Digital currency transactions are irreversible. If the funds are transferred to a fraudster or a scammer, there’s no way to get the money back.

National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) 

Even though there are some concerns, the government knows that there has to be some level of compromise for compliance. Last year, the congress passed the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for the fiscal year 2021. The act is for tackling terrorism and preventing fraud. Some rules enlisted in the act will affect the ownership and usage of crypto-asset funds, ownership, and usage of crypto and other blockchain platforms: 

  • FinCEN is to collect information and create a database of cryptocurrency companies. Organizations that own, operate, or transact using Cryptocurrencies will have to register with FinCEN to keep operating.
  • The cryptocurrency regulations are not just for the big operations. Even smaller companies are required to provide UBO information.
  • The NDAA act prohibits falsifying, concealing, misrepresenting, or attempting to hide and falsify information.
  • Whistleblowers can get up to 30% of the money in cases where the penalties are more than $100,000. Although the information should be about BSA/AML/CFT regulation violations.
  • Cryptocurrency companies have to report cases of suspicious activities using digital assets.
  • FinCEN (Financial Crimes Enforcement Network) has the authority to punish the firms that don’t comply with current cryptocurrency regulations. The penalties will be based on the violation of the rules.

Additional Cryptocurrency Regulations that Firms Have to Follow

The latest NDAA act can be considered just a start for the regulation of cryptocurrencies. Some rules regarding regulation and ownership of crypto assets can be amended.

  • Provision of information on transactions of more than $3,000. This information can include the contact information of the customer, the type of crypto asset funds used, and the time of the transactions. The level of information is not just limited to the above-mentioned factors.
  • Banks and other money service businesses will have to report transactions that are of more than $10,000 to FinCEN. The time duration for reporting is within 15 days from the date of the transaction.

FinCEN also announced that they are planning to amend BSA’s Foreign Bank and Financial Account regulations. Individuals and entities that possess crypto for more than $10,000 will declare it as their asset. Reporting assets without including cryptocurrencies is a clear violation of FinCEN policies. Now that FinCEN can punish the organizations, the best step is to punish them.

How Can Companies Stay Compliant?

The list of laws that cryptocurrency firms have to follow seems endless and excessive. But Cryptocurrency regulations are focused on making sure that compliance standards are met across all providers. Some of the laws in the new act are against the fundamental principle of blockchain and crypto-assets. Blockchain and cryptocurrency provide users with the authority of deciding who has access to their data. But with the government asking for a database defeats the purpose.

There are other concerns regarding cryptocurrency regulations. One of the biggest questions is how does the government regulate platforms when the government can’t verify the information? According to a report, 46% of legislative decision-makers don’t like the automated authentication process of blockchain and cryptocurrencies. And a further 21% don’t trust automated authentication at all.

Digital currency providers are facing a huge issue, as they can’t decide whether to comply with the regulations or stick with the fundamentals of cryptocurrencies and blockchain? Here are the things that digital asset providers can do to stay compliant.

  • Stay up to date with the latest developments in the cryptocurrency regulations
  • Make it a priority to inform stakeholders of minor and major changes in cryptocurrency regulations.
  • Use the US dollar as a unit of conversion while providing reports of suspicious activities.
  • Implement strong user verification procedures and place restrictions that comply with the law. 
  • Report any suspicious cases as demanded by the law.

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Bank Blockchain

Top Use Cases of Blockchain Technology in the Banking Industry

Blockchain or DLT (distributed ledger technology) is an open ledger that keeps track of transactions between two parties permanently. A blockchain is made up of multiple individual blocks all tied up to each other in a specific order. All the involved parties can share the online ledger using a computer network without any middlemen or intermediaries. This leads to faster transaction processing. Improved transaction speed is just one of the many benefits blockchain technology has to offer for the banking industry. 

How Banking Can be Improved with Blockchain Technology?

The overall benefits of blockchain technology make it clear that banking should be the first industry to fully implement blockchain. Blockchain can improve almost every single aspect of the banking industry and make it more secure and transparent. 

Blockchain technology has global implications and it can make trade more seamless and efficient by eliminating the need for documentation relied processes. A public blockchain can be of great use as no single person owns it and every involved party can access the information. Just a decade ago, blockchain technology was associated with digital assets like Bitcoin or Ethereum. That has changed now, utilization of blockchain in banking can enhance a lot of aspects.

Use Cases of Blockchain Technology in Banking

  1. Faster Payments

As of now, sending money from one bank to another bank or sending money from one country to another is a huge hassle. By establishing a decentralized channel (cryptocurrencies) for payments, banks can use new technologies to facilitate faster payments. Wire transfers today cost $25-$50 based on the institution and the country you’re sending money to. The use of blockchain can reduce the time taken for payment processing and lower the cost incurred. 

By implementing blockchain, banks will be able to reduce the need for verification from third parties. Back in 2016, 90% of the European payments council believed that blockchain can change the banking industry in the next 10 years. 

  1. Clearance and Settlement Systems

Instead of using existing protocols like SWIFT, banks can use blockchain to settle the transactions directly and keep track of them more efficiently. 

Even the largest banks globally have to face tons of challenges while moving money around. Something as simple as bank transfer has to go through several intermediaries and meet with compliance regulations before finally reaching the destination. 

The centralized payment processing method “SWIFT” processes only payment orders. The money is passed using a series of middlemen. Each of these transactions costs money and takes up a lot of time. Blockchain can allow banks to keep track of all the transactions worldwide. Banks can eliminate the need for intermediaries and regulatory bodies to process and settle the transactions instantly. 

  1. Buying and Selling Assets

By eliminating the middlemen and asset rights transfer, blockchain technology lowers the asset exchange fee. According to studies and reports, using blockchain for moving securities can help in saving more than $20 million annually in global trade process costs.

It is not easy to buy and sell digital assets like stocks as most of the process requires keeping track of which entity owns what. In the earlier days, the purchase and sale of assets were done with a complicated network of middlemen and exchanges. All these transactions revolved around paper documentation. 

Being able to do the same thing electronically is tough and most of the time, buyers and sellers have to rely on a third party to keep track of documentation. Blockchain technology can change the financial industry by keeping decentralized data of digital assets.

  1. Blockchain for Accounting and Auditing

Out of all the aspects of online banking, accounting is one section that has been especially slow to move towards digitization. To digitize the accounting process, a series of regulatory requirements involving data integrity and validity have to be met. Implementation of blockchain can bring drastic changes to the accounting and auditing sector as well. 

Industry experts believe that implication of blockchain technology can simplify compliance and smoothen the bookkeeping systems. Instead of maintaining separate records of transaction receipts, firms can add the information in a joint book. All the entries made will be decentralized and accessible by involved parties. 

Thus, the records will be more visible and secure. Blockchain technology will play the role of digital notary that verifies all the transactions. 

  1. Digital Identity Verification

Most banks, firms, and financial institutions still rely on antique, paper-based manual document verification for customer ID verification. A sluggish process that is full of friction forces customers to switch to another organization. With blockchain integration, both companies and customers will enjoy a faster, more secure, and efficient customer verification process. Blockchain will allow other organizations to reuse the customer data for customer verification for other services. 

Future of Blockchain In Banking

Banking industry experts believe that blockchain technology will improve some banking standards, but only if several conditions are met. To use blockchain to its full extent, banks need to build infrastructure that can support and operate a global network. A thorough implementation of blockchain is enough to bring huge changes in the banking industry.

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Bank Blockchain

How Blockchain Can Affect Traditional Banking?

Blockchain has taken the world by a storm and is changing everything, from payment transactions to how the money is raised to security in online banking. The main question here is, can traditional banking embrace the change or will it be replaced by something new? It is undeniable that blockchain affect banking in a number of ways. 

In the last decade itself, blockchain technology has received a lot of attention, and all for the right reasons. Despite the skepticism about the technology, the question “will blockchain revolutionize the banking industry?” remains.

Blockchain and Banking: What Role it Plays in the Financial Industry?

Blockchain technology offers a way for untrusted parties to verify the state of a database without the need for a middleman. A blockchain offers a ledger where the information is available to everyone and the information is immutable. A blockchain could provide specific financial services such as payments without needing a bank operating as a middleman. It can also enhance data security, and bank account verification and customer ID verification process. 

Blockchain technology/decentralized ledger technology has a huge chance of disrupting banking by reducing the need for middlemen. Here’s a proper breakdown of how blockchain affect banking industry while providing new business models using technology.

How Blockchain will Change Traditional Banking Methods?

1. Improves Sending & Receiving Payments

Sending and receiving payments using traditional banking methods is not exactly effective. Let’s say you want to send money from the U.S to the U.K, you’ll have to pay a fee to the middleman for wire transfer. To make matters worse, the person you’re sending money to, may not even register the transaction until a week later. 

Completing payments is highly profitable for banks, providing them with little to no incentive to lower their fee on transactions. In 2019, banks generated $224B in payment revenue from cross-border transactions, payments to letters of credit, and more. 

Bear no misconceptions in mind, cryptocurrencies have to go a long way to replace government-issued currencies. In the last couple of years, the transaction rate of cryptocurrencies has grown exceptionally, one such example is Bitcoin. 

Some companies are using Blockchain technology to improve their B2B payments in growing economies. A company named BitPesa facilitates blockchain-based payments to growing economic countries like Kenya, Nigeria. 

Blockchain technology is also being used worldwide to support micropayments. Online wallet providers offer users with perks to make micropayments using Bitcoin, U.S dollar, or any other payment method allowed by apps. This is the first way on how blockchain affect banking industry.

2. Clearance and Settlements Systems

As mentioned above, an average bank transfer takes up to 3 days to settle, which is because of the lack of proper infrastructure. The antique financial infrastructure makes moving money around a hassle for both consumers and banks. 

Something as simple as a bank transfer has to go through several intermediaries and comply with a series of compliance requirements for payment completion. Blockchain technology works as a decentralized “ledger” of the transactions. Instead of banks utilizing SWIFT to keep track of transactions, interbank blockchain technology can track all the transactions securely. 

Blockchain also supports “atomic” transactions (transactions that are settled as soon as payment is completed). The process is opposite to financial systems globally, which clear and settle the transaction after a couple of days. 

Streamlining blockchain technology can eliminate the high costs of maintaining a global network of banks. According to a report made by Accenture, the use of blockchain can reduce transaction settlement costs by $10B annually. 

3. Enhances Raising Funds Process

If you’ve been in the financial industry all your life then you must be aware of how arduous raising money through venture capital is. Entrepreneurs have to sit through long negotiations just to sell a part of the company for the money required. 

Some companies on the other hand are raising funds using ICO (Initial coin offerings) that are backed by digital assets like Bitcoin and Ethereum. The value of a token is tied to the success of a blockchain company directly. Using ICOs, blockchain companies can raise money by selling coins directly to the public. 

There have been some ICOs that have managed to raise millions upon millions before showing any proof of a viable product. 2018 was the high point for ICOs globally, since then there has been a significant fall in ICO transactions. 

While most of the ICOs had the sole purpose of raising money for blockchain products. Now, we’re seeing a trend change where more and more companies are built around decentralization technology. 

One of the biggest examples is Telegram, a messaging app, raised $1.7B with ICO. The goal behind ICO is to sell tokens to users and set up a payment platform alongside messaging app. Based on regulations, ICO activity should be done with caution. Unregulated ICOs started failing after 2018, thus leading to the fall of ICO transactions. 

4. Ensures Security of Payments and Banking Data

Financial transactions of all kinds come with their fair share of risks. Customers need to know who owns the assets like stocks, commodities that you’re investing into. The largest financial markets globally achieve this transparency with a complicated chain of brokers, online exchanges, custodian banks, and so on. These relationships are built on a slow paper-based method that can be highly inaccurate. 

If someone wants to buy a share of YouTube, they’ll have to place their order through a stock exchange, the exchange then will match them with a seller. 10 years ago, you’d spend cash and get a certificate for your purchase as proof. 

Now that all these transactions have gone digital, the process has become more complicated. To reduce the hassle of managing the assets every day, companies outsource this process to custodian banks. As buyers and sellers don’t always use the same custodian banks, the banks themselves have to use a third-party service provider to manage the paper certificates. 

To streamline the process, blockchain technology creates a decentralized database of digital assets. With a decentralized ledger, it’s possible to transfer the rights to an asset using cryptographic tokens. Huge cryptocurrency providers like Bitcoin and Ethereum have accomplished this using digital assets. Newer blockchain-based companies are still struggling to find ways to convert real-world assets into crypto tokens. 

5. Secure Loans and Credits Offering

Banks and lenders underwrite loans using an old method known as “Credit Reporting”. The utilization of blockchain technology allows P2P loans, complex programmed loans, and a faster, more secure loan process in general. 

Whenever a person applies for a loan, banks have to assess their risk level. Banks/lenders use credit score, credit history, the debt-to-income ratio, and homeownership status. This centralized system can prove hostile for consumers. FTC stated that 1 in every 5 American residents has some kind of error in their credit score that makes it harder for them to acquire loans. As most credit information is distributed between three organizations (Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax), they are usually under attack. The 2017 Equifax data breach led to 150M American’s data loss. 

Using blockchain for lending purposes offers a cheaper and efficient solution. This way more people can acquire a personal loan, all the while reducing poor consumer experience and risk of loan fraud. With a cryptographically secure, decentralized ledger of transaction history, banks can decide to approve loans based on a global credit score. 

6. Simplifies the Trade Finance Process

The only reason trade finance exists is to eliminate fraud risk, extend credit, and make sure exporters and importers can take part in international transactions. Trade finance is a vital cog in the global financial process and still, it relies on an outdated method with manual paperwork. 

Blockchain aims to improve and streamline the complex process of trade finance. Which will end up saving billions of dollars for importers, exporters, and their financiers. Trade finance is one of the few areas where blockchain has a firm foot, however, when it comes to streamlining the bills of lending and credit, it’s still taking the initial steps. 

Just like countless other industries, the trade finance market has suffered at the hand of an antique, inefficient manual documentation process. Physical letters from one bank to another bank are still used to ensure that the payment will be received. 

Blockchain technology with its transparency enables firms to securely prove country of origin, product, and other transaction details. It can provide better visibility into the shipments and a more efficient assurance of delivery. 

7. Customer KYC and Fraud Prevention

Another sector that can be greatly improved with the utilization is customer KYC. Banks/firms/lenders need to verify the identity of their customers using a series of documents before allowing them to use their products or services.

Banks can take up to 3 months to complete their KYC procedures, including photo ID verification, address proof verification, and biometrics verification. A slow KYC process can lead to customers leaving a particular organization and switching to another one. Not just time and effort, banks also have to spend huge amounts for KYC verification. An average of $500 million is spent annually by banks for completing the KYC proceedings. 

Blockchain can reduce the human effort and the cost involved in following up with KYC compliance. Customer information can be stored on a blockchain and the decentralized nature of the platform allows all institutions to access the information and complete KYC compliance. Different types of frauds and cyberattacks are a huge concern for banks globally. Once a hacker gains access to a bank’s system they can access all customer information that’s stored on a centralized ledger. By using a decentralized ledger that is Blockchain, banks can ensure security of data. This is one of the major ways on how blockchain affect banking. 

Companies like DIRO utilize blockchain technology and enhance the KYC process. DIRO verifies 7000+ customer document types for KYC verification and offers proof of authentication with verifiable credentials. Verified customer information is then placed on the blockchain with a digital hash. The result is a court-admissible customer document with forensic data. Banks, lenders, and other organizations can use DIRO for streamlining the KYC process by eliminating manual verification of customer documents like bank statements, utility bills, insurance documents, tax return documents, and so on. Plus the documents placed on the blockchain are immutable and secure from fraud.

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Blockchain

Legal Challenges of Blockchain Technology: What Are the Most Common Problems?

In all honesty, Blockchain technology is powerful, exciting, and has multiple uses. The first use case of blockchain was with cryptocurrency, other use cases range from online transactions to decentralized apps and common supply chain processes. As good as blockchain technology is, there are some legal challenges. 

Before institutions begin to utilize blockchain technology for their needs, they need to understand the legal challenges that blockchain has to overcome. Let’s dive a bit deeper into how blockchain works and what legal challenges of blockchain.

How does Blockchain Works?

Blockchain technology is a ledger, a decentralized ledger of information that is publicly owned. The information stored on the ledger can be shared and viewed by anyone. Once any information has been added to the ledger, it can’t be changed, that’s what makes blockchain so secure. That’s why blockchain is used in online document verification, online ID verification, and data management.

The immutability and the transparency of the blockchain make it extremely crucial for decentralization, privacy, security, and eliminating the need for ledgers. Cryptocurrency is supported by blockchain technology, as it offers a huge level of privacy and anonymity that centralized currency can’t compete with. But because of the uncertainty and lack of education around blockchain technology, not all the top institutions want to rely on it. Thus, causing numerous blockchain legal challenges.

Legal Challenges Faced by Blockchain

KYC and AML compliance regulators make sure that criminals don’t exploit blockchain and cryptocurrency for money laundering. The extreme level of privacy offered by blockchain-based cryptocurrency makes it easier for fraudsters to exchange money anonymously. This feature can be exploited by criminals who want to hide their fraudulent activities from governments and regulatory bodies. legal challenges of blockchain

This is one of the major reasons why a lot of countries don’t allow cryptocurrency transactions. Countries that do allow it is trying to make cryptocurrency transactions less private. Companies that offer blockchain services may be pressured to find a balance between privacy and anonymity. They also have to follow a strict level of regulations to reduce or eliminate the risk of crime. Some of the most common legal challenges of blockchain technology are:

1. Privacy Issues

The fight around blockchain privacy and the legality of this don’t seem to settle down anytime soon. As lawmakers are trying their best to prevent crime by removing the tools that can assist fraudsters in moving money from one place to another without being caught. While the cryptocurrency companies are pointing out that every individual has the right to privacy. The cryptocurrency community makes a fair point, but unfortunately, this also works in the favor of money launderers and other criminals. 

2. Regulatory Challenges

One of the biggest regulatory issues revolving around blockchain technologies is if the cryptocurrencies are considered securities, they’ll be bound by the SEC regulatory rules. That’s not an ideal situation for cryptocurrency companies as they will need to follow a wide range of legal obligations that they currently don’t.

The biggest example of this situation is Telegram. In 2019, they launched an ICO, which was shut down by the SEC because they claimed the tokens were sold unlawfully. In June 2020, Telegram finally settled with the SEC and had to return more than $1.2 Billion to investors. 

3. Federal Laws

When it comes to federal laws, a lot of organizations govern how cryptocurrency is regulated. These organizations include:

  • The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC)
  • The Commodities and Futures Trading Commission (CFTC)
  • The Federal Trade Commission (FTC)
  • The Department of Treasury
  • Internal Revenue Service (IRS)
  • The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN)

Although, regardless of this spade of organizations, there’s very little federal lawmaking on this issue. State laws on the other hand are a completely different deal.

4. State Laws

While there aren’t a lot of federal laws regarding cryptocurrencies, there are a lot of state laws. There’s a big difference in how the technology is treated on a state level as opposed to a federal level. Some states have a favorable stance and others are much tougher. 

Wyoming is one such example of a crypto-friendly state. Just recently, Wyoming passed a law where cryptocurrencies are exempted from property taxation. Arizona and Georgia have also legalized Bitcoin as a type of payment method for taxes. State laws are one of the biggest blockchain legal challenges.

However, there are more than a dozen states that have issued warnings for investors regarding cryptocurrencies. New York is probably the biggest example of a state that’s highly restrictive with its crypto laws. 

5. Anti-Money Laundering and KYC 

One huge legal challenge for crypto and blockchain companies is following anti-money laundering laws. There are other laws that crypto companies and blockchain companies have to vary as well. American residents aren’t allowed to do business with foreign nationals who are on the blocked entities list.

And of course, companies that fail to follow the regulation laws can suffer from huge penalties. The new AML directive 5 included some laws regarding cryptocurrency that some cryptocurrency exchanges have to follow. 

How to Fix Blockchain Legal Issues?

Solving the legal challenges around blockchain and crypto isn’t easy at all. In upcoming years, a lot of changes will be made which will probably change the environment around crypto. Cryptocurrency exchange and blockchain companies are trying hard to find a way around the legal complications.