US regulators have begun to coordinate with their overseas counterparts to combat cryptocurrency fraud, Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) Chairman J. Christopher Giancarlo said Wednesday.
Giancarlo revealed this international effort during a U.S. House of Representatives committee hearing on the CFTC’s budget for fiscal year 2019, adding that officials in the Treasury Department and Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) were also involved in the collaboration.
“The CFTC has been in close communication with the SEC with respect to policy and jurisdictional considerations, and in connection with our recent enforcement cases,” he testified, according to a transcript of his statement, which was published online by Mondo Visione. “We have also been working with the U.S. Treasury and the FSOC. In addition, we have been in communication with our foreign counterparts through bilateral discussions and the International Organization of Securities Commissions.”
Notably, Forbes said that Giancarlo was forced to defend his agency’s decision to devote resources to regulating Bitcoin derivatives and combatting cryptocurrency-related fraud after Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) chastised him for using his “limited budget” on an asset class in which only five percent of Americans are invested (a figure that originated in a recent survey).
As CCN reported, the CFTC has ramped up its investigations into cryptocurrency-related fraud and market manipulation in recent months as part of its renewed emphasis on its “back-to-basics” approach to market oversight.
According to a Wall Street Journal report published at the end of February, the CFTC has filed 11 manipulated-related cases during the current fiscal year, which is just one case shy of its annual record. The agency’s fiscal year does not end until September, making it likely the CFTC will shatter this record, in no small part because of an increase in cryptocurrency-linked fraud.
In January, the CFTC filed fraud suits against three cryptocurrency investment schemes, including one — Cabbage Tech — that allegedly swindled at least $1.1 million worth of BTC from more than 600 investors.
The agency also recently issued an investor warning on cryptocurrency pump-and-dump schemes, advertising that whistleblowers could be eligible for monetary rewards.