FinCEN has issued updated guidance addressing the use of crypto currency and other convertible virtual currency (CVC). A portion of this guidance addresses the use of CVC in games. The guidance does not establish any new regulatory expectations. Rather, it consolidates current FinCEN regulations, guidance and administrative rulings that relate to money transmission involving virtual currency.

In 2011, FinCEN issued a final rule (“Bank Secrecy Act Regulations – Definitions and Other Regulations Relating to Money Services Businesses,” 76 FR 43585 (July 21, 2011)) defining a money services business (“2011 MSB Final Rule”). The 2011 MSB Final Rule made clear that persons accepting and transmitting value that substitutes for currency, such as virtual currency, can be money transmitters.
Continue Reading What Game Companies Need to Know About FinCEN’s Updated Guidance on Virtual Currency

The Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s LabCFTC recently released, “A CFTC Primer on Virtual Currencies.” This primer provides an overview of virtual currencies and their potential use-cases, helps outline the CFTC’s role and oversight of virtual currencies, and cautions investors and users of the potential risks involved with virtual currencies.
Continue Reading CFTC Issues Primer on Virtual Currency, Virtual Tokens and ICOs

Financial institutions and currency transactions are highly regulated in the United States. That much is common knowledge. However, game developers may not realize that by creating a system of virtual currency within a game that can be purchased with or redeemed for real currency, they could be opening themselves up to legal issues arising from this morass of federal and state laws, regulations, and rules.


Continue Reading Making Sense of Virtual Dollars

Until very recently, virtual currency trading has been widely accepted in China. Billions of RMB in virtual currency have been traded online, and this amount has been increasing by 20% every year. The practice is so common that around the world, "Chinese Gold Farmers" have become a well-known staple of such popular multiplayer online games as World of Warcraft, and in many parts of the world, this is the image most commonly attributed to virtual currency trading. However, with the blossoming popularity of virtual currency trading in China, concerns have arisen that serious problems could stem from mixing virtual world economies with the real world’s economy—problems such as inflation, money laundering, and gambling. 
 


Continue Reading China’s Gold Crop Weathers New Regulations…For Now