Coinbase Will Pay $50M Fine to New York Regulator to Settle Background Check Charges

Coinbase (COIN) will pay a $50 million fine to the New York State Department of Financial Services to settle charges that it let users open accounts without conducting sufficient background checks. The regulators found that the crypto exchange's policies were in violation of anti-money-laundering laws.

The settlement will also require Coinbase to invest $50 million over the next two years to bolster its compliance program.

"Today Coinbase and NYDFS have come to an agreement to settle a NYDFS investigation, disclosed in our 2021 annual 10K filing, into our historical compliance program," wrote Paul Grewal, Coinbase's Chief Legal Officer, in an email to CoinDesk. "Coinbase has taken substantial measures to address these historical shortcomings and remains committed to being a leader and role model in the crypto space, including partnering with regulators when it comes to compliance."

The NYDFS did not immediately respond to a request for additional comment.

The New York Times initially reported on the settlement.

Coinbase shares were up almost 5% in early trading on Wednesday.

UPDATE (Jan. 4, 14:38 UTC): Removed "report" from headline, added statement from Coinbase and share price move.