Bulletins

Biden's crypto game plan has a heavy focus on risk

Reports from agencies following the president's March executive order on digital assets are clarifying the administration's approach to cryptocurrencies.

Biden in bitcoin

The Biden administration has released details of its crypto game plan with a focus on risk.

Photo: Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images; Protocol

The Biden administration offered a deeper look into its crypto game plan Friday, unveiling a strategy that focuses more closely on the risks posed by the controversial industry. It released nine reports that came in response to the president’s crypto executive order issued in March.


The Biden order was praised by the crypto industry for stressing the need for the U.S. to play a leading role in the growth of crypto and blockchain technologies, while protecting consumers, investors and the financial system.

A fact sheet on the reports released by the White House underscores the Biden administration’s concern about the risks posed by the fast-growing crypto sector. The reports, prepared by federal agencies led by the Treasury, Justice and Commerce departments, stressed the importance of law enforcement and strengthening the country’s financial and monetary systems:

    • The Biden administration wants the SEC and the CFTC to “aggressively pursue investigations and enforcement actions against unlawful practices in the digital assets space.” It also calls on the CFPB and the FTC to “redouble their efforts to monitor consumer complaints and to enforce against unfair, deceptive, or abusive practices.”
    • The administration said it will encourage the adoption of “instant payments systems,” such as the government’s FedNow system scheduled for a rollout as soon as next spring. President Biden will also consider proposals for “a federal framework to regulate non-bank payment providers.”
    • President Biden will “evaluate” whether to ask Congress to expand the scope of the “Bank Secrecy Act, anti-tip-off statutes, and laws against unlicensed money transmitting” to also cover digital asset service providers, “including digital asset exchanges and NFT platforms.”
    Most of the reports mandated by the order were due in early September. The order also requires the Financial Stability Oversight Council to weigh in with a report on risks to stability and gaps in regulation by early October.
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