South Korean Cryptocurrency Investors Face Fines for Anonymous Accounts

South Korean financial authorities said Sunday that cryptocurrency investors must change anonymous virtual accounts to ones attached to their identity or face penalties.

The unnamed authorities said that cryptocurrency investors and traders will be allowed to convert their virtual accounts to real-name accounts before the end of January, but if this is not done, they will be fined, according to a Yonhap News report.

The amount of the penalty has not yet been finalized, the report indicates.

The news was announced as Korean banks move to phase out anonymous virtual currency accounts in line with the government’s stated plan to calm what it perceives as an overheated cryptocurrency market.

According to The Korea Times, however, Shinban Bank said Jan. 12 it does not intend to introduce an identity verification service for deposits and withdrawals from virtual bank accounts – effectively ruling out the opening of new virtual accounts, even with identification.

An official from Shinhan the Bank reportedly said:

“We’ve developed a system to introduce identifying virtual account customers in accordance with the government’s efforts to curb the cryptocurrency craze. However, we decided to scrap the service enabling the trade of digital tokens which has become a serious social issue.”

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