The European Commission proposed a list of changes, which would prevent terrorists and money launderers from using virtual currencies, such as bitcoins. The proposal would revise existing anti-money laundering (AML) protections.
If the proposal is accepted, virtual currency exchanges and wallet providers will be brought under the EU’s Anti-Money Laundering Directive. This means they have to apply ‘due-diligence controls’ “ending the anonymity associated with such exchanges”. Frans Timmermans, First Vice-President of the commission, said these actions are connecting the international security:
“Today’s proposals will help national authorities to track down people who hide their finances in order to commit crimes such as terrorism. Member States will be able to get and share vital information about who really owns companies or trusts, who is dealing in online currencies, and who is using pre-paid cards. Making public the information on who is behind companies and trusts should also be a strong deterrent for potential tax evaders.”
Věra Jourová, the EU’s Commissioner for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality, also made a statement about the proposal:
“Today, we are putting forward stricter transparency rules to cut terrorist financing and step up our fight against money laundering and tax avoidance. The update of the Fourth Anti-Money