Banking News

G20, BIS hackathon targets digital asset money laundering

G20

Yesterday, the Saudi G20 Presidency and the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) Innovation Hub launched a remote hackathon, the G20 TechSprint Initiative. It aims to come up with solutions for regulatory (RegTech) and supervisory problems (SupTech). One of the challenges is to help with anti money laundering (AML) and counter terrorism financing (CFT) for digital assets or crypto assets.

In addition to the two high profile bodies, the competition is also supported by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), the Financial Stability Board (FSB), API Exchange (APIX), and the RegTech for Regulators Accelerator (R2A).

“TechSprint encapsulates one of the core principles of the BIS Innovation Hub, which is to develop public goods in the technology space to enhance the functioning of the global financial system,” said Benoît Cœuré, Head of the BIS Innovation Hub. 

Proposals need to be submitted by May 20th for one of three challenges. These include information sharing between regulators for crisis responses such as COVID-19, anti money laundering (AML) for crypto assets, and machine readable regulatory reporting. 

With respect to digital assets, the problem statement outlines: “A particular area of interest would be tools to monitor against AML/CFT risks at the main fiat-to-crypto conversion gateways (i.e. help gatekeepers identify suspicious users/transactions in a timely and accurate manner).”

Shortlisted teams will receive cash grants with a prize of $50,000 per challenge. The BIS confirmed to Ledger Insights that developers will retain the title, rights of ownership and IP rights in any solutions.

The software will be hosted on and integrated with APIX, the API Exchange, which is part of the non-profit ASEAN Financial Innovation Network (AFIN). It’s a curated tech marketplace where financial institutions and fintechs can find each other, in line with AFIN’s purpose to enable cooperation between the two groups. AFIN is backed by the IFC (World Bank), MAS and Mastercard, amongst others. 

The BIS Innovation Hub was set up last year and is headed by Benoît Cœuré, who was previously a director at the European Central Bank (ECB). The Innovation Hub is also involved in central bank digital currency (CBDC) initiatives.