New York launches Bitcoin probe, eyes new rules
NEW YORK (AFP) - A New York regulator on Monday announced a probe into virtual currencies like Bitcoin on Monday, saying they could be used by drug traffickers and gun runners and threaten US national security.
As part of the probe, according to a person familiar with the matter, the New York Department of Financial Services has sent subpoenas seeking information assistance from 22 companies investing or trading in Bitcoins, an online currency not tied to any one country or regulator that exploded in popularity earlier this year.
The subpoenas included major venture capital groups as well as money exchange and transfer firms that have adopted the virtual currency.
Benjamin Lawsky, state superintendent of financial services, said in the announcement Monday that while the state had an interest in supporting innovation in the financial sector, it had to "ensure that consumers and our national security remain protected."