US Congress Passes Crypto Task Force Bill

News, Regulation | September 28, 2018 By:

A bill that calls for the formation of a task force to combat the use of cryptocurrency in financing terrorism and other illicit uses was passed by the US House of Representatives with a “motion to reconsider laid on the table.”

House Resolution 5036 is an amended version of the bill submitted by Rep. Ted Budd to the House in January. The bill aims to establish a group, dubbed the Independent Financial Technology Task Force, to investigate new financial technologies, including cryptocurrencies, and their use in terrorism and other illicit activities.

“Not later than 1 year after the date of the enactment of this Act, and annually thereafter, the Task Force shall issue a report to the Congress containing the findings and determinations made by the Task Force in the previous year and any legislative and regulatory proposals developed by the Task Force,” the bill said.

Similar to the original version of the bill, HR 5036 would also support the development of tools and programs to detect illicit activities, and directs the Department of the Treasury to provide rewards for information leading to convictions related to terrorist use of cryptocurrencies.

“The Secretary of the Treasury, in consultation with the Attorney General, shall establish a fund to pay a reward, not to exceed $450,000, to any person who provides information leading to the conviction of an individual involved with terrorist use of digital currencies,” the bill said.

The upgraded bill added provisions for preventing rogue and foreign actors from evading sanctions. According to the bill, the President, acting through the Secretary of Treasury, shall submit to the appropriate congressional committees a report that identifies and describes the potential uses of cryptocurrencies by states, non-state actors, and foreign terrorist organizations to evade sanctions, finance terrorism, or launder monetary instruments, and threaten US national security.