Digital Asset Provision in Infrastructure Bill Places Unworkable Requirements on Crypto Technology

Washington, D.C. (August 4, 2021) – The Blockchain Association, Coinbase, Coin Center, Ribbit Capital, and Square express concern regarding the digital asset provision included in the infrastructure bill—language that would place unworkable requirements on crypto technology—and support the amendment introduced by Senators Wyden, Lummis, and Toomey.

The digital asset provision in the infrastructure bill continues to be too broad and vague, and our fundamental concerns remain. First, it could define as “brokers” miners, as well as software and hardware wallet makers, who don’t engage in trading of any kind. Second, it makes possible a massive increase in financial surveillance, potentially requiring companies to report information about individuals even if they are not customers. The development of crypto, and financial innovation generally, has enormous potential for the American economy and the American people through increased job creation and GDP growth. It should not be subject to potentially devastating legislation without public participation and public comment. Senators Wyden, Lummis, and Toomey are right that this language would place unworkable requirements on a nascent industry and we support their proposed amendment to the provision.

Clarifying the provision to address our concerns would not affect the reporting requirements on crypto exchanges that operate on behalf of customers. We support sensible reporting requirements that are consistent with those that apply to traditional financial services.