Commercial banks have instructed their staff to commence monitoring of accounts suspected to be used for trading cryptocurrencies in the country.
The move was to comply with the directive of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) on this development.
The CBN had earlier this year moved against crypto trading in the country, directing banks to close the accounts of individuals involved in cryptocurrency transactions. It had subsequently frozen the accounts of some individuals as well as companies which it said contravened the directive.
An internal memo seen by LEADERSHIP in one of the commercial banks in the country directed staff to commence monitoring of accounts with high volume transactions or any that are suspected to be used for trading cryptocurrencies.
The memo sighted by LEADERSHIP stated that “we wish to reiterate that the CBN is strictly monitoring non-compliance with the directive on the closure of all accounts involved in cryptocurrency for high impact regulatory sanction.
“In view of the above, all staff are hereby advised to identify entities transacting in or operating cryptocurrency exchanges within their systems and ensure that such accounts are closed immediately.
“Any member of staff who willfully does not disclose an account used for cryptocurrency transactions in order to enable such an account to be closed will be sanctioned in line with the provisions of the bank’s sanctions grid.
All staff of the bank are expected to be involved in the monitoring of accounts, transactions and customers in order to make the bank safe and protected from the activities of criminals, organised gangs, money launderers and terrorism financiers.”
Accounts that would be red flagged include that of fintechs with high volume involving multiple daily transactions without a regulatory payment licence or any with virtual or crypto in its memorandum of association.
Also to be red flagged are; personal accounts used for business purposes and accounts with large multiple daily inflow and outflow as well as small businesses whose daily transactions exceed what it should.
Accounts which receive significant inflows from multiple payees and also makes multiple outflows to several beneficiaries are also to be red flagged.