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Today in TechREG: EU Agrees on Strong AML Rules for Crypto Transactions; CFPB Warns Debt Collectors About Fees

Today in TechREG, European Union negotiators have reached an agreement about the scope of anti-money laundering (AML) rules for cryptocurrency transactions. While most of the transactions will need to be recorded and reported to the authorities if requested, some small transactions among unhosted wallets may be exempted. Meanwhile, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) is continuing its crusade against “junk fees” and warned debt collectors about some of their practices. Plus, the Supreme Court decision on Roe v. Wade may bring additional scrutiny on companies collecting payment data as that data could be used as evidence in criminal cases.

EU Agrees on Strong AML Checks for Crypto With an Exemption for Unhosted Wallets

EU policymakers agreed on new AML rules for crypto transactions Wednesday (June 29). For transactions between digital wallet providers, like crypto exchanges, the parties will need to verify customer identities even for the smallest crypto transfer. However, lawmakers decided to leave most small payments or transfers to unhosted private wallets out of AML checks, a departure from the original proposal. Yet, payments to unhosted wallets over 1,000 euros (about $1,050) will still need to be reported, in line with similar provisions applicable for transfers in traditional banking.

CFPB Warns Debt Collectors About Fees

The CFPB issued an advisory opinion Wednesday warning debt collectors that most “pay-to-pay” fees that they often charge violate federal law. These charges, commonly described by debt collectors as “convenience fees,” are imposed on consumers who want to make a payment in a particular way, such as online or by phone.

Payments Data Caught in Abortion Crosshairs

With the overturning of Roe v. Wade and the illegality of abortion in several states, payments data is now in the crosshairs should prosecutors decide to subpoena those records for evidence. Financial companies collect a lot of payment data from customers who pay digitally for the bulk of their daily transactions, from food and fuel to clothes, healthcare and entertainment. Criminal investigators looking for evidence to prosecute abortion lawbreakers can start with payment data, which can be an easier to get than medical records.

DOJ Charges of NFT Insider Trading Show New Digital Focus, Report Says

As the first Department of Justice (DOJ) indictment comes down on an insider trading scheme for non-fungible tokens (NFTs), it remains to be seen how the DOJ will work with the wider NFT community. According to Wilson Elser attorneys John Cahill, Jana Farmer and William Behr, the case could provide information on whether NFTs will be classified as securities. The DOJ will also be looking to increase its enforcement efforts.

Apple Enables Third-Party Payments in South Korea in Response to New Law

Apple is now allowing third-party payments in South Korea in response to a new law requiring major app stores to allow alternative payment methods. While Apple will still get a commission, it will be 26% instead of the 30% it reaped from direct payments. In its documentation to developers, Apple said all sales will have to be reported monthly and commissions paid accordingly.

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