As cryptocurrency and financial tech takes an increasingly front and center role in a wide range of businesses, the US government has finally decided it is time to reassess its stance on the matter. Back in March, President Joe Biden issued the Digital Assets Executive Order. The order called for the responsible development of new policies around crytocurrency, allowing for more participation from US companies while still maintaining a responsible and legal approach to issues surrounding anti-money laundering (AML) and other procedures.
The American Gaming Association (AGA) applauded Biden and encouraged him to take the action a step further and ensure measures taken around the executive order appropriately consider how the gaming industry fits into these decisions.
AGA letter encourages Biden to consider gaming when evaluating cryptocurrency
In an open letter to Undersecretaries Nellie Liang and Brian Nelson, AGA President Bill Miller encouraged consideration of the gaming industry, stating:
“As the U.S. government works to translate the policy goals in the Digital Assets Executive Order to actionable legislative and regulatory requirements, AGA respectfully requests that the U.S. government evaluate how any new frameworks or requirements would map onto the gaming industry. A number of companies in the gaming industry are considering incorporating digital asset products and/or blockchain technologies into their operations. Complying with requirements such as anti-money laundering regulations for fiat currency has illustrated over time that the operations of the gaming industry raise unique questions that can necessitate tailored requirements and guidance for the industry. As they have with fiat currency, AGA’s members remain a willing partner to assist the U.S. government to fashion predictable and workable guidelines to govern the use of digital assets in the gaming industry.”
Offering background on how the casino industry has adjusted to the new cashless world, the AGA release noted:
“Although companies within the gaming industry do not have a uniform view about the role that digital assets should play in the industry, some have taken initial steps to incorporate digital assets, including cryptocurrencies, into their operations in compliance with current state and federal regulations. Also as result of pandemic precautions and demand signals from our customers, many of our members have accelerated their integration of digital payments from the hotels and restaurants, to the casino floor.”
The letter also attested that AGA partners were all firmly in favor of the executive order and encouraged a more progressive approach when it comes to crypto and other new fintech.
AGA combatting AML as well as black market sites
The letter comes not long after the AGA issued new guidance on AML practices which included updated information on regulated markets with cryptocurrency guidelines.
Many regulated gaming companies have eschewed cryptocurrency, NFTs, and other new fintech developments out of concern around AML and Know Your Customer (KYC) protocols. As Miller noted, in order for regulated gaming to stay at the forefront of technology, not to mention compete with the black market.
AGA has also encouraged the federal government to crack down on black market operators, including crypto casino sites and other offshore sites that lack the regulatory oversight to properly vet customers or protect against money laundering.