As cryptocurrency investments become more popular in Russia, the country's central bank is working hard to stop what it considers to be dubious crypto activity and to prevent some cryptocurrency purchases.
The Bank of Russia has begun negotiating with local banks to have them suspend payments to cryptocurrency exchanges in order to safeguard customers against "emotional" cryptocurrency purchases.
Sergey Shvetsov, the Bank of Russia's first deputy governor, argued that the new measures aim to protect Russian investors from potential losses if the cryptocurrency market "crashes to zero," local news agency RIA Novosti reported Wednesday.
After the Bank of Russia urged local banks and credit institutions to pay more attention to certain types of individual financial transactions, particularly those involving bitcoin exchange services, the latest anti-crypto effort has been started.
In an official statement released Sept. 6, the Russian central bank requested that local banks restrict customer accounts, e-wallets, or credit cards for questionable crypto transactions identified using a number of characteristics such as the quantity of senders or receivers.
Some of the criteria suggest that, Russian banks should prohibit accounts with a "unusually large number of counterparties," or accounts with more than 10 distinct payers or recipients per day, or more than 50 different counterparties per month. Other criteria require banks to pay more attention if customers' average balances are less than 10% of their typical daily transaction volumes for at least a week.
The new guidelines, according to the document, are intended to detect and stop illegal financial activities associated to criminal businesses. According to the Bank of Russia, the majority of payments in the shadow economy come through bank cards or e-wallets issued by false individuals.
As previously reported, the Bank of Russia has been hesitant to embrace the bitcoin industry. Local stock exchanges was urged by the central bank in July to desist from listing foreign and domestic companies that provide cryptocurrency-related services. The regulator is also preventing major banks from facilitating cryptocurrency trade, according to reports.
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