The Central Bank of Nigeria has on Friday instructed that all banks should shut down accounts of customers involved in cryptocurrency transactions.
This developed not too long after the CBN banned cryptocurrency in Nigeria.
The notice was distributed by the CBN to deposit money banks (DMBs), non-bank financial institutions (NBFIs), and other financial institutions dated 5th of February.
Bello Hassan, Director for banking supervision, and Musa Jimoh, Director of the payment system management department signed the notice which was distributed.
“Accordingly, all DMBs, NBFIs and OFIs are directed to identify persons and/or entities transacting in or operating cryptocurrency exchanges within their systems and ensure that such accounts are closed immediately.” read the statement.
Furthermore, CBN warned against local financial institutions from making or facilitating any transactions in cryptocurrency.
The fact that the digitalised currency could be used in funding terrorism and money laundering due to its anonymity was the major reason for the apex banks decision on the matter.
CBN had said in an earlier statement in 2017, “The attention of bank and other financial institutions is hereby drawn to the above risks and you are required to take the following actions pending substantive regulation or decision by the CBN,”
“Ensure that you do not use, hold, trade and/or transact in any way in virtual currencies. Ensure that existing customers that are virtual currency exchangers have effective capital AML/CFT controls that enable them to comply with customer identification, verification and transfer, monitoring requirements”.
CBN had also warned that people involved in crypto trades were doing so at their own risk being that they weren’t protected by the law