Which Cryptocurrencies Are Regulated?

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Are you curious about the regulations surrounding cryptocurrencies? With over 9,000 digital currencies in circulation worldwide, navigating the landscape can feel overwhelming. This handy guide will break down how certain cryptocurrencies are regulated across different countries and explain why these controls exist.

Are you ready to demystify cryptocurrency laws?

Key Takeaways

  • Cryptocurrencies are regulated in countries like the United States, China, Canada, the United Kingdom, and Japan.
  • In the United States, certain cryptocurrencies are considered securities and must follow specific laws enforced by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
  • China has implemented strict regulations on cryptocurrency trading and initial coin offerings (ICOs), while Canada focuses on preventing money laundering through reporting requirements for cryptocurrency exchanges.
  • The United Kingdom requires businesses dealing with cryptocurrencies to register with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and comply with anti-money laundering measures.
  • Japan has established a regulatory framework for cryptocurrencies to protect investors and combat money laundering.

Cryptocurrency Regulations Around the World

Cryptocurrency regulations vary across different countries, with the United States, China, Canada, the United Kingdom, and Japan having their own unique approaches to regulating digital assets.

United States

In the United States, there are rules for cryptocurrencies. The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) sees some digital money as securities. This means they need to follow certain laws.

For example, cryptocurrency exchanges must be legal and meet Bank Secrecy Act rules. Also, if a cryptocurrency is seen as a security under federal or state law, its sale needs to follow certain rules too.

But not all things are clear yet. People still talk about how to handle stablecoins because there is a question on whether they hold real economic value or not.


China has taken a strict approach to cryptocurrency regulation. In 2017, the Chinese government banned initial coin offerings (ICOs), which are a way for companies to raise funds using digital tokens.

They also shut down cryptocurrency exchanges in the country. The government cited concerns about financial risks and fraud as reasons for these actions. China views cryptocurrencies as potentially destabilizing to its financial system, and they have been cracking down on activities related to them.

However, despite the ban, Chinese citizens continue to show interest in cryptocurrencies and find ways to access them through overseas platforms.


Canada has implemented regulations to govern cryptocurrencies. In Canada, cryptocurrency exchanges are considered money services businesses (MSBs) and must adhere to the Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada (FINTRAC) reporting requirements.

This includes registering with FINTRAC, implementing customer due diligence measures, and reporting suspicious transactions. Additionally, Canadian securities laws may apply to certain types of cryptocurrencies that are considered securities.

The Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) provides guidance on how securities laws apply to cryptocurrency offerings and trading platforms. Overall, Canada aims to strike a balance between fostering innovation in the cryptocurrency space while also protecting investors and preventing illicit activities like money laundering.

United Kingdom

The United Kingdom has taken steps to regulate cryptocurrencies and protect investors. In 2019, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) implemented new regulations that require businesses dealing in cryptocurrencies to register with them.

This includes exchanges, wallet providers, and firms involved in initial coin offerings (ICOs). The FCA also introduced anti-money laundering measures for cryptocurrency transactions.

These regulations aim to prevent illegal activities such as money laundering and fraud while encouraging innovation in the crypto industry. The UK government is actively monitoring the sector and working towards creating a secure regulatory framework for cryptocurrencies.


Japan has established a regulatory framework for cryptocurrencies to ensure investor protection and combat money laundering. The country’s Payment Services Act requires cryptocurrency exchanges to register with the Financial Services Agency (FSA) and comply with certain security measures.

Japan was one of the first countries to officially recognize Bitcoin as legal tender, further cementing its position as a leading hub for cryptocurrency activity. However, in recent years, there have been several high-profile hacking incidents that have raised concerns about the security of digital assets in Japan.

As a response, the FSA has implemented stricter regulations on exchanges and conducted thorough inspections to enhance consumer protection measures. Overall, Japan’s approach to cryptocurrency regulation aims to strike a balance between fostering innovation and safeguarding financial stability.

Regulatory Issues and Questions

Are there any regulations on cryptocurrencies and what is the future of cryptocurrency regulation?

Are there any regulations on crypto?

Cryptocurrencies are subject to regulations in many countries around the world. In the United States, for example, cryptocurrency exchanges are legal and fall under the regulatory scope of the Bank Secrecy Act.

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) also argues that certain cryptocurrencies and products built using cryptocurrencies are considered securities. Similarly, China has implemented strict regulations on cryptocurrency trading and Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs).

Canada, the United Kingdom, Japan, and other countries have their own sets of regulations as well. These regulations aim to address issues such as fraud, money laundering, and investor protection.

What is the future of cryptocurrency regulation?

The future of cryptocurrency regulation is still uncertain as governments and regulatory bodies around the world grapple with how to approach this emerging technology. Some countries, like the United States and Japan, have already implemented regulations to protect investors and prevent fraud.

However, there are still many questions that need to be answered. For example, how should stablecoins be regulated? Should there be global standards for cryptocurrency regulation? And what role should global governance institutions like the IMF play in overseeing cryptocurrencies? As cryptocurrencies continue to evolve and gain mainstream acceptance, it is likely that we will see more comprehensive regulations put in place to address these issues and ensure the stability and security of digital assets.

Who is the cryptocurrency regulator?

Cryptocurrency regulation varies from country to country, but in the United States, the main cryptocurrency regulator is the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The SEC oversees and enforces securities laws for cryptocurrencies that are considered securities.

They aim to protect investors and ensure fair markets. In addition to the SEC, other regulators such as the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and state agencies also play a role in regulating certain aspects of cryptocurrencies.

It’s important for cryptocurrency users and businesses to be aware of these regulations to stay compliant with the law.

The Role of Global Governance Institutions

Global governance institutions play a crucial role in regulating cryptocurrencies, with the United States and the European Union leading efforts to establish clear guidelines and oversight measures for digital assets.

How are cryptocurrencies regulated in the U.S. and the EU?

Cryptocurrencies are regulated differently in the United States and the European Union (EU). In the U.S., cryptocurrency exchanges are legal and fall under the purview of the Bank Secrecy Act.

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) also plays a role in regulating certain cryptocurrencies that are considered securities. Additionally, individual states within the U.S. may have their own regulations on cryptocurrency.

In the EU, there is no uniform regulatory framework for cryptocurrencies across all member states. However, there have been efforts to establish a common approach to regulation through initiatives like the Fifth Anti-Money Laundering Directive (AMLD5).

Under AMLD5, cryptocurrency exchanges and custodian wallet providers must adhere to anti-money laundering and know-your-customer requirements.

Cryptocurrency regulation in the European Union

In the European Union (EU), there is a growing focus on regulating cryptocurrencies. The EU has recognized the need for regulatory measures to address issues like fraud and money laundering.

The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) has stated that certain cryptocurrencies, when they meet specific criteria, should be considered financial instruments subject to regulation.

The EU’s Fifth Anti-Money Laundering Directive requires member states to regulate cryptocurrency exchanges and custodian wallet providers to prevent money laundering and terrorist financing.


Cryptocurrencies are becoming increasingly regulated around the world. Countries like the United States, China, Canada, and the United Kingdom have implemented regulations for digital assets.

The SEC in the US plays a major role in regulating cryptocurrencies, considering some of them as securities. As cryptocurrencies gain more popularity and attract investors, it is important to have regulations in place to address issues such as fraud and money laundering.


What does it mean when a cryptocurrency is regulated?

When a cryptocurrency is regulated, it means that government oversight of digital currencies exists. The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the Commodity regulations, or other regulatory bodies set rules for its use.

Are there any cryptocurrencies that are overseen by law?

Yes, some regulated cryptocurrencies obey legal status put in place by different countries worldwide. These laws also touch on digital asset ownership documentation.

What agencies manage crypto regulations worldwide?

A few institutions regulate cryptos. The Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME) and Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC)in the US are examples. G countries also play an important role in global approach to cryptocurrency regulation.

How do state-by-state crypto laws work in the US?

In the US, each state might have different cryptocurrency laws and regulations — this is defined as “state-by-state cryptocurrency regulations”.

Are new rules being made for cryptos globally?

Yes! Across the globe, emerging regulations for digital assets are under consideration to handle challenges and developments in crypto regulation.

What happens if I don’t stick to these Crypto Regulations?

Breaking these compliance requirements can lead to serious results such as fines or lawful moves against you from places like SEC or Bank Secrecy Act BSA where they give supervision of cryptocurrencies.



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About the Author:
Morgan Davis, an expert in digital currency and economic analysis, offers a unique perspective on cryptocurrency within the global financial landscape. With a background in International Economics, Morgan's insights delve into how macroeconomic factors influence the crypto market. Their writing simplifies complex economic and cryptocurrency concepts, making them accessible to a broad audience. Morgan is actively engaged in discussions about the impact of blockchain on finance, and their work empowers readers to understand and navigate the world of digital currencies.