Coinbase warns customers about subpoena in apparent CFTC Bybit probe

Regulation

Coinbase is warning that it has received a subpoena from the United States Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), according to X (formerly Twitter) users who have posted copies of the message. The CFTC is seeking information about the Bybit cryptocurrency exchange.

Recipients have speculated that any Coinbase customer who also used Bybit received the message. Coinbase may provide information on users’ accounts and transaction activities to the CFTC unless the subpoena is reversed by a court by Nov. 30, according to the Nov. 27 message.

Dubai-based Bybit stated earlier this year in its terms of service that it does not provide service in the United States, but it is reportedly accessible using a virtual private network (VPN).

The day following Coinbase’s communication, Bybit announced that it had reached 20 million users. It described itself as a “top-three cryptocurrency exchange.” According to the exchange’s statement:

“Prudent risk management and enhanced AML [Anti-Money Laundering] compliance have led Bybit to gain licenses in the UAE, Kazakhstan, and Cyprus.”

Bybit announced it would be imposing Know Your Customer (KYC) verification on users in July 2021, although it is not clear when that took place. Bybit posted KYC instructions for its customers in September 2022.

Related: Opyn DeFi protocol founders are leaving crypto after CFTC crackdown

In September, Bybit said it would leave the United Kingdom market in October when new Financial Conduct Authority rules came into force. It removed two sanctioned Russian banks from its payments list in August.

The CFTC labeled itself the “premier” enforcement agency for crypto in its roundup of fiscal year 2023 cases. It initiated 47 cases in the digital assets sector in that period, representing 49% of the cases filed. Among those cases were suits against FTX, Celsius, Voyager Digital CEO Stephen Ehrlich and Binance.

Neither Coinbase nor Bybit responded to Cointelegraph requests for comment.

Magazine: Crypto regulation: Does SEC Chair Gary Gensler have the final say?

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