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Author Topic: [2018-06-05] SEC Appoints New Crypto Chief Valerie A. Szczepanik  (Read 25 times)
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June 05, 2018, 09:56:07 AM

The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) already has a cryptocurrency task force, and now it’s designated a crypto advisor. The Wall Street regulator has named Valerie A. Szczepanik to spearhead the application of securities laws to “digital asset technology and innovation” across cryptocurrencies and initial coin offerings (ICOs).

Her appointment seems apropos, considering that Szczepanik was the maiden SEC official to comment on ICO projects about a year ago when she urged ICO startups that if they wanted the industry to flourish, to keep investor protection at the forefront.

It’s a newly created position, with her official title being “Associate Director of the Division of Corporation Finance and Senior Advisor for Digital Assets and Innovation for Division Director Bill Hinman,” and it’s yet another sign of the resources that the SEC is pouring into the cryptocurrency space despite a lack of any specific regulatory framework.

“With her demonstrated skill, experience, and keen awareness of the importance of fostering innovation while ensuring investor protection, Val is the right person to coordinate our efforts in this dynamic area that has both promise and risk,” said SEC Chairman Jay Clayton in a press release.

Szczepanik is already leading the SEC’s distributed ledger technology (DLT) working group and is a cybersecurity veteran. The SEC is no doubt looking to harness her veteran status in securities laws and her knowledge about the cryptocurrency space. With her appointment, the SEC is either moving closer to announcing regulation or stalling.

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August 01, 2018, 09:09:42 AM

Regulators like the Securities and Exchange Commission shouldn't be acting as gatekeepers to new technologies like bitcoin, according to Commissioner Hester Peirce.

Peirce's remarks, made during an interview with CoinDesk, follow the agency's decision to confirm the 2017 rejection of a bitcoin-tied exchange-traded fund backed by Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss, which reinforced the argument made in a publicly-issued dissent published alongside last week's announcement.

According to Peirce –  who was sworn into office this past January and previously served as a staffer in the U.S Senate – the decision actually does a disservice to investors who are operating in the market.

"From my perspective, we need to be mindful of what our role is, and it's not to be the ones who decide which innovations and which technologies get through and which ones' don't," Peirce told CoinDesk.
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