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Cryptocurrencies

South Korean financial authorities inspect banks over crypto services to clients

Wednesday 10 January 2018 | 10:35 AM CET

South Korean financial authorities have been inspecting six local banks that offer virtual currency accounts to institutions, amid concerns the increasing use of such assets could lead to a surge in crime.

The joint inspection by the Financial Services Commission (FSC) and Financial Supervisory Service (FSS) aims to check if banks are adhering to anti-money laundering rules and using real names for accounts. Furthermore, the inspections are intended to provide guidance to banks and are not the result of any suspected wrongdoing.

NH Bank, Industrial Bank of Korea, Shinhan Bank, Kookmin Bank, Woori Bank and Korea Development Bank have all provided virtual currency accounts to clients that handle cryptocurrencies, according to the FSC. A Woori Bank spokesperson told Reuters the bank was filling out a checklist for the inspection. The spokesperson said Woori had stopped providing virtual account services in December 2017 as the costs of using a real-name transaction system were too prohibitive. NH Bank and Shinhan Bank representatives declined to comment, while the other three banks could not immediately be reached for comment.

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