Bank secrecy

Bank secrecy (or bank privacy) is a legal principle in some jurisdictions under which banks are not allowed to provide to authorities personal and account information about their customers unless certain conditions apply (for example, a criminal complaint has been filed). In some cases, additional privacy is provided to beneficial owners through the use of numbered bank accounts or otherwise. Bank secrecy is prevalent in certain countries such as Switzerland, Lebanon, Singapore and Luxembourg, as well as offshore banks and other tax havens under voluntary or statutory privacy provisions.

Created by the Swiss Banking Act of 1934, which led to the famous Swiss bank numbered account, the principle of bank secrecy is always considered one of the main aspects of private banking. It has also been accused by NGOs and governments of being one of the main instruments of underground economy and organized crime, in particular following the class action suit against the Vatican Bank in the 1990s, the Clearstream scandal and the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. Former bank employees from banks in Switzerland (UBS, Julius Baer) and Liechtenstein (LGT Group) have testified that their former institutions helped clients evade billions of dollars in taxes by routing money through offshore havens in the Caribbean and Switzerland. One of these, Rudolf M. Elmer, wrote, "It is a global problem...Offshore tax evasion is the biggest theft among societies and neighbor states in this world." The Swiss Parliament ratified on June 17, 2010 an agreement between the Swiss and the United States governments allowing UBS to transmit to the US authorities information concerning 4,450 American clients of UBS suspected of tax evasion.

Latest News for: Bank secrecy laws


Estonian rude awakening spurs tech startup activity

Computer Weekly 19 Oct 2020
In October 2020, Salv brought together the four largest banks in the country to pilot its platform, which enables information exchange between the banks about suspicious customers and transactions within the limitations of bank secrecy and the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)....

The US Crypto Enforcement Framework Is a Warning to International Exchanges

XBT.MONEY 14 Oct 2020
government refers exchanges – still do not necessarily comply with the Bank Secrecy Act or other laws, the framework claimed ... According to the indictment, the DOJ is alleging the defendants violated the Bank Secrecy Act and conspired to violate the Bank Secrecy Act across two separate charges....

Ripple CEO Threatens to Relocate Company Overseas Due to Unfavorable US Regulation

XBT.MONEY 13 Oct 2020
Ripple chief executive officer Brad Garlinghouse has threatened to move the company’s headquarters overseas should the U.S. fail to level the playing field with an unambiguous regulatory framework ... innovation and U.S ... He noted that “Ripple abides by and supports critical laws”, including the Bank Secrecy Act as well as anti-money laundering rules....

Crypto Community In India Calls For Regulatory Sandbox

Cryptopolitan 12 Oct 2020
In the economic forum held worldwide by Ripple, several legislators from the United States were invited to make an in-depth study of the laws. Ripple supports the laws made against money laundering and bank secrecy. There are laws like these that are very important, so malicious actors do not have a stake in the Crypto game....

BitMEX Exchange: compliance chief officer joins BitMEX Exchange following EE charges

Cryptopolitan 12 Oct 2020
Exchange is one of the most important platforms for Bitcoin trading today. According to a publication made on Monday, this platform announced the hiring of Malcolm Wright as the group’s chief compliance officer ... This is an organization that aims to eradicate financial crimes ... This resulted in the violation of the Banking Secrecy Law ... .......

Bitcoin Fundamentals are in ‘Moon Mode’ Now: Will Market Respond Only In 2021?

CryptoPotato 08 Oct 2020
Noted on-chain market analyst Willy Woo is of the opinion that Bitcoin’s network fundamentals including blockchain data and infrastructural metrics are going pretty strong ... The US DOJ and CFTC charged bitcoin derivatives exchange BitMEX’s founding team for violating the federal Bank Secrecy Act and conspiring to violate that law ... .......

The case against BitMEX is a compass pointing towards the future of crypto regulation

XBT.MONEY 06 Oct 2020
1, the United States Department of Justice filed criminal charges against four executives of the BitMEX trading platform — including its founder, Arthur Hayes — for violating the Bank Secrecy Act ... charges of violating and conspiring to violate the Bank Secrecy Act, or BSA....

Bitcoin [BTC] Price Analysis: Pullback from $10,800 after U.S. CFTC Sues BitMex

Crypto Economy 02 Oct 2020
The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) is suing BitMex, one of the world’s largest crypto derivatives platform, after join charges were presented by the DoJ and the regulator. In a civil enforcement action filed at the U.S ... regulator ... complying with their stringent laws. All this is contrary to rules laid out by the Bank Secrecy Act ... .......

Bitcoin Plummets as CFTC and FBI File Charges Against BitMEX

Crypto Briefing 01 Oct 2020
We can’t allow bad actors that break the law to gain an advantage over exchanges that are doing the right thing by complying with our rules.” ... Moreover, the Feds have simultaneously charged BitMEX with violating Bank Secrecy Laws which pertain to money-laundering and anti-terrorist activities....

Lebanon passes ‘historic’ anti-corruption law amid public outcry for transparency

The National 01 Oct 2020
Despite being passed into law in 1953, Lebanon’s illicit enrichment legislation has never been applied, experts say ... The law also allows a yet-to-be formed anti-corruption agency to periodically audit politicians’ assets and declarations of interest ... Other laws are required, like banking secrecy and the recovery of stolen assets....

US targets crypto derivatives exchange

Asiatimes 01 Oct 2020
TikTok’s 90 days in the cooking pot ... The Department of Justice charged Arthur Hayes, Samuel Reed and Benjamin Delo, who together founded BitMEX in 2014, and Gregory Dwyer, its first employee and later head of business development, with violating the federal Bank Secrecy Act and conspiring to violate that law, Reuters reported ... Buy now or wait? ... .......

Lebanese parties silent after harsh criticism from Emmanuel Macron

The National 28 Sep 2020
President Aoun said he “regretted” prime minister-designate Mustafa Adib’s failure to form a cabinet ... Parliament is scheduled to meet on Wednesday and Thursday to discuss 40 draft laws, including controversial and repeatedly postponed legislation to fight corruption and lift banking secrecy ... “I am ashamed for your leaders ... Read More ... IRC ... ....

Philippine Public Payment Act bill filed

Manila Bulletin 26 Sep 2020
HB 7714 provides that all citizens of the Philippines who are 18-years-old and above and have a PhilSys Number (PSN) shall have a government bank account called One Account, which shall be covered by the Bank Secrecy Law ... “If one has an existing bank account in a government bank, he can designate the same as his One Account,” he said....