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Amid the crypto winter of 2022 and major bankruptcies this year 2022, law enforcement agency requests have doubled at Coinbase.
On Monday, December 12, crypto exchange Coinbase reported that the total number of law enforcement requests has skyrocketed by a staggering 66% through the year ending September 30. The exchange released its transparency report which showed that a majority of the requests i.e. 43% came from the US.
This was ultimately followed by the UK, Spain, and Germany. As of now, crypto exchange Coinbase serves nearly 108 million customers from across the world. Thus, they have been regularly receiving and responding to requests from law enforcement agencies.
These regulators have been seeking financial records and customer account information in connection with criminal, civil, or other investigative matters. As the crypto industry continues to expand, law enforcement and agency requests have skyrocketed simultaneously. These requests can include court orders, subpoenas, search warrants, or other forms of the legal process.
Coinbase noted that they seek to narrow the requests over time and provide a more appropriately tailored response to law enforcement agencies. Besides, providing individual customer information, Coinbase provides more anonymized data.
“We have an obligation to respond to such requests if they are valid under financial regulations and other applicable laws,” said Paul Grewal, chief legal officer of Coinbase.
The Rising Law Enforcement Requests
The crypto winter of 2022 has led to major bankruptcies and collapses in the crypto space this year. The collapse of some of the biggest projects such as FTX and Terra ecosystem has spread the contagion across the entire crypto market.
As a result, law enforcement agencies have turned more vigilant about the developments in the crypto space. We have been seeing that the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has been tightening its grip on the crypto space. Besides, other governments and regulatory agencies have also been active in this matter. Speaking about the surge in requests received by Coinbase, Grewal added:
“Since last year’s report, these requests have more than doubled, which we attribute to a combination of our own expansion and an overall increase in law enforcement and regulatory interest in the crypto industry. In every instance, we carefully review law enforcement and agency requests before providing data to ensure we are honoring our customers’ rights over their personal information”.
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