The Securities and Exchange Commission of Thailand has granted approval to yet another cryptocurrency exchange.
With this, the number of approved crypto exchanges in Thailand has increased to six.
Even better, the Thai government is developing its own wallet. This will help effectively confiscate cryptocurrencies from illegitimate sources.
Seadex Now Legally Operational Across Thailand
The main crypto regulatory authority in Thailand, approved Seadex aka Southeast Asia Digital Exchange Co. Ltd. on September 6. This came in after the authorities reviewed Seadex’s information and considered that the business was in existence before May 14. This is the date the regulations took effect.
According to the regulations, operations of crypto firms that had been in existence before the regulations came into force could continue with the review of their applications. Firms were to apply before August 14, however, in order for them to be considered.
The previous month, the Thai SEC approved 7 crypto firms of which 5 were crypto exchanges.
Thai Government’s Own Wallet
Thai authorities are looking forward to having their own wallet to keep crypto crimes under check. For this, the Amlo (Anti-Money Laundering Office) of the Thailand government will soon maintain its own crypto wallet.
Witthaya Neetitham, the Secretary of Amlo said that the government officials are discussing the ways to procure and safeguard their own wallet. This will help confiscate cryptocurrency acquired “from illegal sources”.
According to the publication, there is at present “no law allowing the agency to freeze or seize digital currency, nor anywhere to keep it.” Consequently. Thai authorities could not confiscate the crypto assets of cybercriminals.
This is clearly evident from the incident earlier this year. A Moldovan who was suspected of maintaining a child porn website and arrested. Ekkanit Natethong, the Police Captain, had then revealed, “We found bitcoin in his e-wallet, but had to leave it there because we don’t have any regulations [to seize the crypto].”
The Challenges: Identifying Crypto Operators
The Thai government has so far legalized seven cryptos. In the words of Neetitham, “Amlo does have measures to combat crimes involving [the] digital currencies licensed by the [Thai] Securities and Exchange Commission.”
He believes that handling crypto operators functioning outside the system is a major challenge. “We cannot identify the cryptocurrency operator or receivers when duped victims transfer money to the criminals,” he said.
Chartpong Chirabandhu, the deputy director general of the Department of Special Litigation of the Office of the Attorney General describes the problems in greater detail, “a big problem with digital assets and other such evidence is the difficulty in discovering the identity of those transacting.”
He added, “When we present the evidence to [the] court, it often fails to convince the judges.”
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