Financial Crimes Enforcement Network
P.O. Box 39
Vienna, VA 22183
FinCEN Docket No. FINCEN-2020-0020, RIN 1506-AB47
December 30, 2020
To Whom it May Concern:
I am Ben Davenport, an entrepreneur and investor. I previously co-founded BitGo, the first non-custodial multi-sig wallet provider, and now leading provider of custodial services for cryptocurrencies. I am also an investor in companies like Kraken, Xapo and Paxos. Today, I am a Venture Partner at Blockchain Capital, the oldest venture fund in the cryptocurrency space. These comments are my own, and do not reflect the opinions of either my current or former employer, or the companies I have invested in.
I appreciate the opportunity to comment on the proposed regulations. However, I take serious issue with the process by which these proposed rules are being rolled out. Rather than a more standard 30- or 60-day comment period, FinCEN has decided to use only a 15-day comment period, at the peak of a pandemic, at a time of year when most people are enjoying time with their families. It feels unnecessarily rushed, and gives the appearance that FinCEN and/or the Secretary are attempting to slip new regulations through unopposed, or to simply steamroll through any such opposition. FinCEN owes it to its own reputation & credibility, as well as to the American people, to immediately lengthen the deadline for comments, so that more thoughtful & diverse voices can be heard.
I also have serious objections to the substance of the rules themselves. The new rules would:
- go far beyond any existing measure of financial surveillance,
- provide little in terms of new investigatory powers,
- push bad actors to offshore or unregulated venues,
- destroy Americans’ financial privacy, and
- put Americans in real physical danger.
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