The state government in Illinois this week announced that its Digital Currency Regulatory Guidance proposal had been released for public comment. The guidance provides an overview of the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation’s (IDFPR) policy on cryptocurrency, as well as its interpretation of how the state’s Transmitters of Money Act apply to various digital currency activities. The IDFPR release is part of a broader effort to incorporate blockchain technology into the state’s official government operations.
The IDFPR guidance document offers the department’s interpretation of digital currency types, and its policy for applying the Transmitters of Money Act to decentralized digital currency activities. It offers a definitive look at “how digital currencies are currently regulated” under existing law, and provides examples of the types of activities that are currently defined as money transmission – as well as those that are not. IDFPR Secretary Bryan Schneider explained the importance of the guidance:
“As innovative payment technologies grow in popularity, it is vital that we provide a succinct regulatory framework that gives businesses operating in this space necessary clarity.”
The release of the department's guidance document comes on the heels of this week’s announced creation of the Illinois Blockchain Initiative at Blockchain Conference Chicago. That Initiative involves a consortium of government agencies across Illinois, including the IDFPR, the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, Department of Insurance, the Cook County Recorder of Deeds, and the Department of Innovation and Technology. The partnership is designed to further explore blockchain’s potential, and is part of an effort to ensure that Illinois takes a leading role in technological innovation.