In an attempt to keep a tab on digital assets, the Malta Financial Services Authority (MFSA) has appointed US-based cybersecurity firm CipherTrace.
As reported by the Times of Malta on March 11, the cybersecurity company will be responsible for tracking crypto transactions passing through local exchanges and digital wallets.
In addition, the firm will oversee regulatory processes and audit risk management of digital currency businesses operating in the island nation.
Mentioning the criticality of the new sector and the recent appointment of CipherTrace, Joseph Cuschieri, CEO of MFSA, said: “Being strongly aware of the money laundering and financing of terrorism risks associated with entities operating in this sphere, the decision has been taken to engage the services of CipherTrace in order to reduce fraud and detect transactions with illegal sources of funds.”
License to Operate
Malta is screening the applications of crypto businesses to allow their operation in the jurisdiction. According to the publication, at least 29 companies have applied with the MFSA seeking for an operational license.
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“CipherTrace compliance monitoring will provide the MFSA with powerful oversight tools to automate regulatory processes and audit the risk management of virtual asset businesses licensed in Malta,” Cuschieri added.
Founded by Silicon Valley entrepreneurs in 2015, the blockchain security company offers cryptocurrency anti-money laundering, forensics, and blockchain threat intelligence solutions through its supervisory technology tool called Suptech.
“Suptech will allow the MFSA to monitor the activities of crypto businesses both pre- as well as post-authorization stage,” David Jevans, CEO of CipherTrace, detailed.
He further explained that the security firm’s compliance monitoring tool would “help [to] decide which virtual asset businesses to trust as corporate customers. These insights help banks avoid de-risking by turning away valuable customers in this lucrative and fast-growing sector.”
Malta is one of the crypto friendly jurisdictions on the globe and has attracted a lot of major crypto business’ to its shores. However, last December, the ‘blockchain island’ issued a warning against an unauthorized crypto broker to prevent any shady activity.
Meanwhile, in February, CipherTrace raised $15 million from a series of venture capital firms to boost its analytics capabilities and to make a mark on the overseas markets.