Japanese exchange Coincheck has confirmed the removal of four privacy centered cryptocurrencies, Zcash, Monero, Dash, and Augur. This according to CoinTelegraph, Japan(May 18).
This news follows reports from March this year, stating that the Japanese exchange would halt all it’s handling of privacy-focused altcoins. These earlier reports came after Coincheck had frozen trading and withdrawal of all cryptocurrencies after the January hack that saw over 500 million dollars (between six and seven billion rands) worth of NEM stolen from the exchange. According to reports at the time from the JapanTimes, the NEM tokens stolen in January were already being changed to other cryptocurrencies, on a site created on the dark web by Febuary 7. The exchange had otherwise only resumed trading of some currencies by March 12.
Based on what Coincheck says , the removal of these four privacy coins is dew to come into effect on June 18 of this year. The blog also states that the removal comes as part of Coincheck’s plans to comply with anti-money laundering and counter terrorism financing requirements issued recently by the FSA(Financial Services Agency) , Japan’s financial regulator. After the January hack on Coincheck , the Japanese regulator (FSA) has become more active in regulating domestic crypto-exchanges. This led to Coincheck being served a business improvement notice on March 8 , following a series of inspections by the FSA. These inspections were carried out on 15 other Japanese exchanges.
Coincheck was sited specifically as lacking in the prevention of money laundering and terrorism financing. Japan Times pointed out that Coincheck’s decision to stop handling these privacy coins came as a result of the regulator’s improvement notice. The FSA has also stated that , as part of its efforts to curb criminality in their domestic crypto-sphere. All officially registered exchanges will face restrictions on trading privacy coins , this is due to the difficulty in tracking these coins in comparison to a cryptocurrency like Bitcoin.
A statement released on Friday 18 by the exchange stated that the altcoins being targeted for removal are to be sold at market value and converted to Japan’s local fiat currency , Yen. The company that acquired Coincheck , Monex inc , had earlier that week opened-up about its plans to expand the exchange’s operations to the U.S.A. These plans claiming that Europe and the U.S are advanced in comparison to Japan at “attracting institutional investment” into the world of crypto and clarity of regulatory framework.