Know Your Customer (KYC)
When it comes to conducting business transactions, Know Your Customer (KYC) is a financial regulation that requires organizations to verify the identity of customers and take suitable measures to prevent the misuse of their services. This regulatory requirement is an important part of reducing fraud and money laundering, while also protecting customers’ financial data.
How Does KYC Work?
KYC is an iterative process, one which requires companies to dispose of customers who don’t generate profitable business. Customers are usually identified by collecting information such as name, address, date of birth, and national identity number, as well as other related information such as contact telephone numbers and email address.
Once this information is obtained, the organization can perform the appropriate due diligence. This includes the verification of the customer’s existing records and documents, such as their government-issued identity documents, to ensure their authenticity.
KYC is required by many cryptocurrency exchanges and other services as part of their regulatory compliance obligations. These regulations are designed to prevent the use of cryptocurrencies for illegal activities, such as money laundering, terrorism financing, or other financial crimes.
Some cryptocurrency advocates have criticized KYC as intrusive and counter to the principles of privacy and anonymity that are often associated with cryptocurrencies. However, many in the industry recognize the importance of KYC in protecting the integrity of the cryptocurrency market and ensuring that it is not used for illegal purposes.