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  • Writer's pictureIsabelle Korman

Malta: How a Dreamy Island is Shaping the Future of Blockchain

Credit: Mariana Proença

It is a coveted destination on every adventurer's bucket list and an island whose beauty can only be appreciated by those who have been there. Lately though, it has become so much more, enriching its own economy with the widespread use and adoption of blockchain & digital currency.

Let's step away from our daydream state for a brief minute so we can take a look at what Malta has been cooking up and if the rest of the world will drink the Kool-Aid.

Earlier this week, the Malta Financial Services Authority, MFSA, recently set new standards for digital currency exchanges by enlisting the auditing services of CipherTrace, a U.S. based Cybersecurity Firm. With the goal of combatting money laundering as well as other financial crimes, the MFSA will be requiring all network peers to register before carrying out any cryptocurrency exchanges, which will in turn allow CipherTrace to provide MFSA with crucial insight regarding the trustworthiness of businesses and individuals alike. Joseph Cuschieri (CEO, MFSA) stressed that “being strongly aware of the money laundering and financing of terrorism risks associated with entities operating in this sphere, the decision has been taken to engage the services of CipherTrace in order to reduce fraud and detect transactions with illegal sources of funds.”

According to the CipherTrace website, they are the "World's First Blockchain Forensics Team" that was "created to develop cryptocurrency and blockchain tracing and security capabilities." It has also been actively helping governments make crypto trading safe and trusted. In today's digital climate, new-payment methods are becoming a more important factor in actual money laundering schemes, which is where cryptocurrencies enter the picture. It is widely known that criminals are using cryptocurrencies in the cash-out of crime proceeds.

It's very interesting to see the crypto industry talking openly about security and Malta is leading by example. The island hosts a very appealing infrastructure for digital currency, so it comes as no surprise that many of the larger crypto companies (such as Binance, BitBay, OKEx) are moving their offices there. Seriously, what's in their water?

For now, we must wait patiently to see some of the outcomes from this new partnership, it could very well set the tone for the crypto industry in 2019.

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