The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced today that it would hire 20 additional positions to the Crypto Assets and Cyber Unit (formerly known as the Cyber Unit) within the Division of Enforcement, increasing the number of dedicated positions to 50. The “Crypto Unit” is tasked with protecting investors in crypto markets and from cyber-related threats. With more personnel and resources available, the SEC believes the unit will be “better equipped to police wrongdoing in the crypto markets” while still staying involved in disclosure and controls issues with respect to cybersecurity.
According to the release, the 20 additional hires will include supervisors, investigative staff attorneys and fraud analysts, with a focus on investigating securities law violations in: crypto asset offerings, exchanges, and lending and staking products; decentralized finance (“DeFi”) platforms; non-fungible tokens (“NFTs”); and stablecoins.
As we stated in a recent post, statements and proposals by financial regulators suggest that providers should expect more scrutiny and additional compliance hurdles going forward.