BitFlyer to Resume Opening New Accounts After One Year Voluntary Suspension

BitFlyer, a Tokyo-based crypto exchange, will resume opening new domestic accounts beginning July 3 after voluntarily suspending the activity one year ago, according to a statement.

BitFlyer received an operational improvement order from the Financial Services Agency, the Japan’s financial watchdog, in April 2018 due to concerns raised over loosely enforced identification procedures and potential risks of money laundering. Pursuant to this order, the company stopped processing new users to bolster its identification mechanisms and know your customer protocols.

“We will strive to restore customer trust by thoroughly complying with relevant laws and regulations and further strengthening our management system,” the company said in a statement at the time.

Additionally, at the time users registering online were prevented from withdrawing Japanese yen or transacting with cryptocurrencies until the exchange confirmed their identity and address through the postal system. Those that passed the firm’s verification process received a letter in the mail.

The regulator raised concerns following a report from Japanese media outlet Nikkei as well as coverage by CoinDesk Japan.

According to the translated document, the company had until July 23, 2020 to submit a business improvement plan. The company was also asked to develop management systems for risks such as money laundering and terrorist financing, oversee a system to control anti-social forces, and construct a privacy and record keeping system.

BitFlyer states the procedure to activate a new account may take longer than usual after reinstating the service.


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