“Adrienne Harris Heads Largest Crypto Regulatory Unit on the Planet”


Adrienne Harris, the Superintendent of the New York Department of Financial Services (NYDFS), has reaffirmed her commitment to regulating the virtual currency space in New York. Under Harris’ leadership, the NYDFS has initiated a two-year transformation to strengthen oversight in the crypto sector.

This endeavor includes creating guidelines for the adoption and listing of virtual currencies as well as developing a framework to classify coins or tokens as DFS greenlisted. Since Harris was appointed in August 2021 and confirmed by the State Senate in 2022, the crypto unit of the NYDFS has grown to over 60 people – the largest crypto unit in the world, according to Harris.

The NYDFS claims its regulatory framework for virtual currencies will ensure high standards of safety, soundness and consumer protection, while encouraging responsible growth in the industry. Harris has highlighted the importance of collaboration with regulators worldwide to establish effective standards for the crypto sector.

The NYDFS has released eight regulatory guides covering stablecoins, market manipulation, and blockchain analytics. Additionally, the DFS has amended the rules for coin listings, requiring firms under the BitLicense regime to create robust self-certification processes. The modification also mandates a delisting requirement, based on Binance’s stablecoin BUSD.

In November 2022, the NYDFS released digital asset guidance for state-regulated banks, specifying the information needed to engage in virtual currency activities. Harris stressed the importance of these policies in protecting consumer funds and keeping New York-regulated banks competitive in the crypto space. The department also introduced rules for licensed crypto firms issuing stablecoins, mandating reserve requirements and monthly independent audits.

The NYDFS has also updated its guidelines for coins listings and delistings. These changes apply to digital currency business entities and limited purpose trust companies licensed under the New York Codes, Rules, and Regulation. Harris has emphasized the commitment of the department to adapting its regulatory and operational capabilities to industry developments for the protection of the consumer and market.

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