South Korean regulator fines crypto exchanges over privacy concerns
Coinone, Coinpia, Coinplug, Korbit, Ripple4y, Upbit, Youbit and crypto wallet service Eyalabs were fined.
South Korea’s communications regulator has slapped eight domestic cryptocurrency exchanges with penalties totaling KRW141 million (US$130,000) for having “very weak” personal information protection policies.
In a translated public statement the Korea Communications Commission (KCC) announced that, following field surveys of 10 virtual currency trading sites, eight were found to have insufficient user protection measures.
These deficiencies were in violation of South Korea’s Information and Communication Network Act. The KCC said that the exchanges failed to properly prevent against unauthorized access to personal information, lacking necessary access control devices such as intrusion prevention systems, measures to prevent the tampering of records and encryption safeguards for secure storage and transmission of personal information.
Coinone, Coinpia, Coinplug, Korbit, Ripple4y, Upbit, Youbit and crypto wallet service Eyalabs were fined. The two exchanges that weren’t charged had stopped providing related services during the survey period.
The violating operators must stop any violations and periodically educate personal information protection officers and employees, plus issue a correction order within 30 days and submit the results to the KCC.
Additionally, the KCC will establish and implement internal management plans, including safe management plans related to virtual currency electronic wallets, cryptographic keys and cryptocurrency transactions.
“As security threats such as virtual currency speculation and hacking on handling sites are increasing, the actual situation of personal information protection of major virtual currency exchanges has been found to be very weak,” Korea Communications Commission chairman Lee Hyo-Sung said.
Although the penalties imposed aren’t incredibly high, earlier this week the government’s top financial regulator outlined a new set of measures aimed at curbing speculation and eliminating anonymity within the country’s expansive cryptocurrency market, setting an implementation date of January 30.
There have also been reports that South Korea will begin taxing crypto exchanges over the next few months.
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