The Currency Auditor’s Office recently announced that nationwide banks can offer custody services for crypto assets
In a letter of interpretation published earlier this week, the Office of the Currency Auditor (OCC) has made it clear that national banks and federal savings associations are granted permission to provide services related to the storage of cryptocurrencies to the public. The OCC reaffirmed its position that every National Bank is free to provide services to legitimate companies that they choose if risks are effectively managed and applicable laws are complied with. The U.S. has not yet created comprehensive federal crypto legislation. For this reason, it has to be clarified how different government agencies view cryptocurrencies and which regulations can apply to handling them.
Interest in crypto and the demand for custody are increasing
With approximately 40 million U.S. citizens who own cryptocurrencies and institutional investors who invest in them, most U.S. states have passed cryptocurrency laws and regulations. The increased demand for locations or services where cryptographic keys for crypto wallets can be securely stored, as well as the ability for investment advisors to manage assets on behalf of the client, prompted an OCC interpretation. Given the irreplaceable nature of cryptographic keys and the recognized value of the digital assets they protect, crypto holders around the world could consider banks and financial institutions and benefit from what these services offer.