Home Crypto Events Understanding the Ongoing Battle Against Financial Crime: Insights from the UK Government

Understanding the Ongoing Battle Against Financial Crime: Insights from the UK Government

financial crime

The UK Treasury, in collaboration with the FCA, has identified crypto firms among the “greatest risks” for potential exploitation in money laundering schemes. This recognition comes as part of a broader assessment encompassing wealth management companies, retail and wholesale banking, and other financial entities. The report, covering the period between 2022 and 2023, underscores the persistent vulnerability of these sectors to financial crime.

During this timeframe, the FCA allocated significant resources to tackle money laundering, with a notable emphasis on supervising crypto-asset companies. Out of a total of 52.8 full-time specialist employees dedicated to anti-money laundering efforts, nearly one-third were tasked with overseeing the activities of crypto firms. This allocation underscores the growing recognition of the unique challenges posed by cryptocurrencies in the realm of financial regulation.

According to insights gleaned from data provided by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), cryptocurrency firms emerged among the top-tier entities deemed “particularly vulnerable” to financial crime between the years 2022 and 2023. Alongside retail banking, wholesale banking, and wealth management companies, crypto-asset firms have found themselves at the forefront of regulatory scrutiny due to their susceptibility to being exploited for illicit financial activities.

During the aforementioned period, the FCA’s diligent financial crime specialists, totaling 52.8 full-time employees, dedicated a significant portion of their efforts to overseeing Anti-Money Laundering (AML) cases. Notably, nearly one-third of these specialists were specifically focused on supervising crypto firms, underscoring the growing recognition of the unique challenges posed by the cryptocurrency sector in the realm of financial regulation.

A comprehensive review conducted by the FCA encompassed 231 assessments of financial firms operating within the UK, complemented by an additional 375 cases addressing various financial crimes and sanctions violations. Furthermore, as part of a proactive supervisory approach, FCA teams launched 95 investigations into British cryptocurrency companies, signaling a concerted effort to uphold regulatory integrity and safeguard against potential illicit activities.

The regulatory scrutiny extended beyond traditional reviews, as evidenced by the launch of 95 cases into British crypto companies by FCA teams. These initiatives reflect a proactive approach aimed at identifying and addressing potential risks within the crypto ecosystem. Moreover, they highlight the government’s commitment to staying ahead of emerging threats in the rapidly evolving financial landscape.

In parallel with supervisory efforts, the UK government has been actively working to establish clearer legislative frameworks for crypto assets and stablecoins. The announcement of plans to introduce comprehensive regulatory measures by July underscores the importance of regulatory clarity in fostering a secure and transparent crypto ecosystem. Such initiatives seek to strike a balance between innovation and risk mitigation, ensuring that the UK remains at the forefront of responsible crypto regulation.

Furthermore, recent developments have expanded the authority of law enforcement agencies to combat cryptocurrency-related crime. The enhanced powers granted to the National Crime Agency (NCA) and police empower them to “seize, freeze, and destroy” cryptocurrency used in illicit activities. This represents a significant step in the ongoing efforts to disrupt criminal networks operating within the crypto space, reinforcing the message that illicit activities will not be tolerated.

As the financial landscape continues to evolve, the battle against financial crime remains an ongoing priority for the UK government. By addressing the vulnerabilities posed by crypto firms and implementing robust regulatory frameworks, policymakers seek to safeguard the integrity of the financial system while fostering innovation and responsible growth within the crypto industry.

Read more about:
Share on


Evie is a blogger by choice. She loves to discover the world around her. She likes to share her discoveries, experiences and express herself through her blogs.

Crypto newsletter

Get the latest Crypto & Blockchain News in your inbox.

By clicking Subscribe, you agree to our Privacy Policy.