The central bank of Russia is to take steps to throttle the rise in digital currency trading activity in the country, including blocking some digital currency purchases, in a bid to tackle suspicious activity, according to local reports.
The Bank of Russia has begun working closely with local banks to identify potentially suspicious digital currency payments, instructing them to halt payments sent to digital currency exchanges to prevent “emotional” bitcoin purchases.
First Deputy Governor of the Bank of Russia Sergey Shvetsov said the measures were designed to offer more protection to unsuspecting investors, highlighting the risks of digital currency market “crashes to zero” and the impact this can have on investors.
It comes following a previous directive from the central bank for banks to pay more attention to certain types of transactions, including those involving digital currency exchanges and other digital asset services.
The central bank has demanded local banks to block the accounts of some customers, as well as blocking credit cards and e-wallets suspected of being involved in dubious transactions. Among the criteria for detection is the number of senders and receivers to a particular wallet, which the central bank has identified as one of the key triggers of suspicious accounts.
More than 10 different recipient payers per day or greater than 50 per month should be subject to the increased scrutiny. On another criteria, individuals with an average balance of less than 10% of their daily transaction volumes for a week should be flagged.
The new proposals are being brought forward to curb illegal uses of digital currency, with the Bank of Russia identifying this as a growing problem within Russia. In particular, the use of bank cards and e-wallets issued to often fake IDs are suspected of involvement in a number of financial and other crimes within the country.
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