E-commerce giant Rakuten has partnered with blockchain security and analytics firm CipherTrace to give a further boon to its forthcoming cryptocurrency exchange, known as “Rakuten Wallet.”
The deal helps enhance anti-money laundering (AML) processes at Rakuten Wallet, which has started accepting account applications since mid-April, like tracing the source of on-chain funds and matching user IDs to problematic wallet addresses.
Pre-registration with Rakuten Wallet is currently available only to customers who have accounts at Rakuten Bank, yet it’s not clear when or whether the service will be available to the wider public.
Japan’s equivalent to Amazon stated earlier that its crypto exchange, which is registered with the Kanto Local Financial Bureau, will open for business next month, and will incorporate a mobile app for trading cryptocurrencies.
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Rakuten Wallet, formerly Everybody’s Bitcoin, is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Rakuten which acquired it for $2.4 million in August 2018.
Cryptocurrencies throw up challenges to regulators
CipherTrace offers a suite of blockchain forensics tools and services that allow its customers to analyze cryptocurrency transaction flows, such as identifying hacked or laundered funds and also offers theft asset recovery service. The California-based firm also helps law enforcement and financial regulators in their investigations on crypto-related AML and compliance issues.
The cross-border and stateless nature of cryptocurrencies throws up different challenges to regulators, even if they decide to devise formal guidelines to govern the asset class. As such, digital assets operators, including crypto exchanges, are increasingly turning to compliance solutions to help provide background checks on their customers as they find themselves under increasing scrutiny from regulators over possible violation of securities and AML rules.
Yoshinao Kiyama, head of the risk at Rakuten Wallet, commented: “Regulatory compliance and anti-money laundering protections are of the utmost importance, and we believe CipherTrace will provide us the necessary tools needed to best support Rakuten Wallet.”
Dave Jevans, CEO of CipherTrace, added: “Rakuten Wallet cares about its customers and will work with CipherTrace to make sure that exchanges have optimal protections for mainstream adoption. It is our hope that proper compliance, transparency and increased trust will lead to more and more participation in the global crypto market. We are excited to blaze this trail with Rakuten Wallet.”