South Korea bans privacy coins

The South Korean government is banning privacy coins as part of its anti-money-laundering drive.

Coins that add an extra layer of anonymity to transactions, such as Monero, Zcash and Dash, will not be sold at the country’s exchanges after March 21, 2021, CPO Magazine reports.

The Financial Services Commission (FSC) said the frequent use of privacy coins (which it calls “dark coins”) for ransomware attacks and money laundering is the chief reason for the ban.

The new law augments the existing Special Payments Act, a comprehensive crypto regulation act that was passed in March.

“Most mainstream crypto coins, such as bitcoin, are not completely anonymous: at the very least they make public the wallet addresses involved in the transaction as well as the amount. Law enforcement can track these transactions back to crypto exchanges, where the wallet holders can potentially be identified either by the email address they used to register the exchange account or by using personal identification to open it,” explains CPO.