In a blog post published today, peer-to-peer digital currency trading firm LocalBitcoins announced that it will soon be subject to regulation by Finland’s Financial Supervisory Authority. The company confirmed that it is working to ensure that its services will be in full compliance with Finnish regulations.
The Finnish Parliament recently made changes to the country’s laws to ensure that anti-money-laundering regulations apply to digital currency service providers. In its blog post, LocalBitcoins highlighted the salient details of those changes:
On Wednesday 13th March 2019, the Finnish Parliament has voted and approved a proposal for a new Act on Virtual Currency Service Providers and an amendment to the Act on Detecting and Preventing Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing ("AML law") that will bring virtual currency services (i.e. custodian wallet providers and exchanges) like LocalBitcoins under the AML law supervised by the Financial Supervisory Authority of Finland.
LocalBitcoins launched an improved account registration process last week, designed to enable identity verification at signup. According to the company, that new process also enables new users to more quickly locate trading partners. There are also ongoing efforts to improve identity verification, including verification for corporate accounts.
Meanwhile, LocalBitcoins stressed the positive aspects of the new regulatory requirements. It suggested that the Virtual Currency Service Providers Act will create “a legal status for crypto assets” when it goes into effect in early November, “which should improve significantly Bitcoin’s standing as a viable and legit financial network.”