The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) said it is expanding its crypto asset enforcement team by adding 20 positions, in a move to bolster its efforts to combat cybercrime associated with cryptocurrency.

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Fast facts

  • The SEC on Tuesday said that its staff strength in a crypto crime-focused unit within its enforcement division will grow to 50.
  • Nearly doubling the size of this unit will enable the SEC to identify disclosure and control issues with respect to cybersecurity, SEC chairman Gary Gensler said in a statement.
  • Set up in 2017, the unit has carried out more than 80 enforcement actions associated with fraudulent and unregistered crypto asset offerings, leading to monetary relief totaling at least US$2 billion, the SEC said.
  • In addition to crypto asset offerings, the unit will investigate alleged violations related to crypto asset lending and staking products, decentralized finance platforms, non-fungible tokens and stablecoins.
  • “The SEC is a regulatory agency with an enforcement division, not an enforcement agency. Why are we leading with enforcement in crypto?,” SEC Commissioner Hester Peirce tweeted on Wednesday.

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