Blockchain Association launches Custody Working Group

The Blockchain Association is pleased to announce the launch of its Custody Working Group, which will coordinate industry efforts to engage with regulators as they develop guidance on the custody of digital assets. Katie Biber, General Counsel of Anchorage, and Matt Perona, Chief Operating Officer of Polychain, will co-chair the working group.

One of the primary obstacles to full institutional participation in the burgeoning cryptocurrency industry is the lack of federally-regulated custodians with digital asset expertise.

Federal law requires that investment advisers hold assets with “qualified custodians,” specialized financial firms that meet certain requirements for safekeeping assets. These custody rules were developed to ensure that assets entrusted to registered investment advisors are held securely and auditably by an accountable third party.

Federally licensed qualified custodians for digital assets would be able to safeguard such assets in full compliance with U.S. laws and regulations. Moreover, custody rules for digital assets will improve trust and liquidity in U.S. digital asset markets, improving the United States’ ability to protect consumers while remaining competitive in this important new industry. Finally, a framework should be developed to address requirements for the self-custody of digital assets that are not supported by qualified custodians.

The Blockchain Association’s Custody Working Group looks forward to working with industry and government stakeholders to set standards for qualified custodians of digital assets, ultimately encouraging the development of the cryptocurrency industry in the United States.