It looks like crypto stakeholders turned out in force, despite the Treasury’s best efforts to evade scrutiny.
Despite many objections to the truncated timeframe, public comments are due tonight in response to the U.S. Treasury’s proposal to require businesses like crypto exchanges to know the identities behind wallets with which they transact.
As of Sunday night, the Treasury’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, or FinCEN, had recorded 5,633 responses to its proposed rule. That number is despite the fact that FinCEN gave only 15 days, rather than the usual 60 for responses.
The office dropped its announcement on Dec. 18, a Friday evening a week before Christmas Day in the states. Meanwhile, today, the due date, is the first usual workday after New Year’s Day. Not to mention the fact that the Treasury is only 16 days away from the auspices of a Biden administration.
FinCEN’s timing has been the subject of criticism from a number of lawmakers as well as the crypto community. Adding to the problem, some potential commenters have reported issues on using the U.S. federal government’s main portal. Particularly on Tuesdays and Thursdays, a separate beta site has been damaging links.
Which is not to mention criticism of the rule itself, which would require registered money services businesses, especially crypto exchanges, to both adopt Bank Secrecy Act limits on transactions to and from their platforms and, indeed, go beyond them by requiring they know the beneficial identity of any self-hosted crypto wallet on the other end of a transaction valued at $3,000 or more. Many see this as a bold violation of privacy by a Treasury regime that is not going to have to see the policy through.