What are the main functionalities that blockchain/DLTs have to support Know Your Customers (KYC), Anti-Money Laundering (AML) and Counter Terrorism Financing (CTF)? Does it make sense that Ethereum could support any of them?


This is a rather general question on the intersection between canonical law and distributed ledgers, but I'll answer it anyway.

All the procedures you mentioned were created long before blockchains were even conceived. Their presumptions were, at the time, that developers have complete control over their finances, servers and data. That's why current legislation (e.g. GDPR or AML2018 in the UK) is about companies, the data they hold and the way they interact with customers.

Now, lo and behold cryptocurrencies, where these presumptions don't hold water. There is no one directly in charge, hence the answer to your question is that traditional KYC and AML policies cannot be applied if the backend of your app is written solely in Solidity.

Nevertheless, there are projects trying to tackle the sensitive issue of identity on decentralised systems, most notably ERC725, Sovrin, Blockstack, Civic and uPort.

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