Mainstream lags in crypto understanding, think tank survey finds

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The crypto industry exudes more confidence against industry risks than outsiders looking in.

Collaborating with YouGov, the Royal United Services Institute, or RUSI, and the Association of Certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialists, or ACAMS, conducted a survey on authorities’ perception of the crypto industry.

“The RUSI-ACAMS Cryptocurrency Risk & Compliance Survey provides unprecedented insight into how governments, the cryptocurrency industry, traditional financial institutions, and others view the use of cryptocurrency, including its inherent risks and the robustness of compliance controls within the cryptocurrency sector,” the survey said. 

The endeavor questioned authorities worldwide, ultimately receiving 566 different insights. The survey revealed a number of results, including disagreement on the safety of crypto asset usage. Mainstream polled entities see the asset class as risky. Crypto industry participants polled also see the asset class as risky, but felt that they possessed the knowledge, skills, and tools to bring possible threats down to a benign level, based on their responses to the survey. This included industry participants who were savvy around anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism financing procedures. 

The survey mentioned unease from both camps on the topic of nefarious crypto usage, anticipating further future guidance and regulation.  “While cryptocurrency use by criminals only accounts for around 1% of all transactions, it remains an attractive venue for those avoiding the traditional financial system,” the survey said. 

The findings also reported:

“Respondents also indicate that despite current skepticism over the role of cryptocurrency in promoting financial inclusion, there might be more space for it in the future. Respondents predict both an increased role for cryptocurrency in day-to-day payments in the future as well as a decrease in cryptocurrency use for illicit activities, especially as compared to how it is viewed now.”

Given the bevy of hacks and mishaps over the last few years, participants in the crypto industry should strive to be aware of the involved risks, making prevention measures a key component of the space.