Blockchain technology and virtual wealth has become intertwined concepts with multiple background themes describing their integration. Digital assets and virtual currency are some of the most significant blockchain applications. However, how could ordinary users take advantage of digital assets and virtual currency in a blockchain? Here you will encounter a virtual property provider.

With the recent regulatory action by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) on virtual property providers or VASPs, many people are eager to know the term. The FATF’s risk-based approach to virtual assets and virtual asset service providers provides an accurate picture of the VASP. The following discussion covers some important terms related to virtual property providers, while taking into account the regulatory implications of VASP.

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Origin of VASP equipment

The first thing that comes to the mind of all beginners about VASPs is their origins. The FATF, or Financial Action Task Force, introduced the virtual asset provider concept to the world for the first time. The FATF published a report entitled “A Guide to a Risk-Based Approach to Virtual Assets and Virtual Asset Service Providers” in June 2019. The guidelines outlined a variety of conditions that focused on resolving uncertainties and doubts about digital assets and virtual currencies by various companies. So what is FATF?


The FATF is undoubtedly one of the most discussed terms in relation to VASP or virtual property service providers. Money laundering and anti-money laundering enthusiasts may be aware of the FATF and its activities. However, the majority of the world’s population is unaware of the FATF’s identity and work.

The Financial Action Task Force, or FATF, is, in fact, an intergovernmental body set up by its member regions in 1989. The FATF’s role is primarily focused on providing guidance to countries on anti-money laundering measures and the fight against terrorist financing.

FATF member countries are assessed on the basis of compliance with FATF recommendations, referred to as mutual assessments. It is also important to note that there must be considerable pressure from Member States to achieve good results in mutual evaluations.

An international group of member countries can issue guidelines to countries, even if the guidelines do not become national laws. Member countries can tailor their existing regulations and laws and adopt new ones frame easily. The FATF has now issued guidance on the definitions of a virtual asset and virtual property service provider. Let us learn more about these terms to better understand them.

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The entity of digital assets and the customer of digital assets

Before you dive into the answers, what is a virtual resource? and the definition of VASP, it is important to understand some other significant terms. Digital Asset Entity (DAE) and Digital Asset Client (DAC) are two terms that you need to understand carefully before you start a discussion about virtual assets and VASPs.

Digital Asset Entity, or DAE, basically refers to an umbrella for different companies developed for virtual currency transactions. VASPs, such as virtual currency exchanges and ATMs, fall into the category of digital asset communities. They can be financial institutions or even other entities such as business incubators or gambling sites that use virtual assets without classifying them as financial institutions. In some cases, a digital asset is also known as a virtual asset.

The next important term you need to know before diving into the discussion of VASP and its functions is the Digital Asset Client. The DAC refers in principle to all digital property entities that use the services of a formal financial institution, such as a bank. Initially, the DAC provided a description of the broad classification of virtual currency-based customers in the U.S. Treasury Department’s OCC enforcement actions against the US Federal Reserve MY Safra Bank in the first half of 2020.

The Office of the Currency Regulator (OCC) issued one of the first virtual currency enforcement actions against MY Safra Bank. Law enforcement actions required a cessation and cessation order that focused on inadequate anti-money laundering practices in monitoring and enforcing customers of the bank’s digital assets.

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What is a virtual property?

The definition of virtual assets is one of the most significant highlights in the guidelines previously discussed by the FATF. Virtual assets are a new addition to the FATF for managing the use of blockchain-based digital and virtual assets, and digital currency. The definition of virtual property shows that it is, in fact, a digital representation of value that can be traded or transferred digitally.

In addition, it can also help serve the investment or payment activities. On the other hand, it is also important to know what virtual property is not. They do not include digital conversions of fiat currencies, securities or other financial assets that have already been addressed in other parts of the FATF Recommendations.

A broader answer to the question “what is a virtual resource?” allows you to include virtual currencies in other types of assets, such as ICO (original offering of coins) tokens. It also emphasizes the inclusion of commodity- or fiat-guaranteed digital currencies as well as utility codes. At the same time, it is also important to remember that virtual service IDs are not virtual assets.

On the contrary, virtual service marks are in fact a digital representation of a value that cannot be transferred or exchanged with a third party at any time. Virtual service marks also include digital identifiers that are intended to provide access to applications or services or services or functions directly to the owner.

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Virtual service provider

The most important thing you’ve been waiting for so far, namely the definition of a virtual property provider, is pretty easy to understand. You can start by understanding the virtual property service. The virtual service could demonstrate the process of allocating virtual property. On the other hand, it may also refer to a business involving the performance of one or more selected activities for or on behalf of another person. The functions referred to in this case are

  1. Exchange of virtual resources and fiat currencies
  2. Protecting or managing virtual assets or tools that can enable comprehensive management of virtual assets
  3. Converting exchangeable virtual resources from one form to another
  4. Transfer of virtual resources
  5. Participation in and provision of Financial Services related to an offer by an issuer or the sale of virtual property

Therefore, all companies that meet these criteria can become VASP or virtual property service providers. In addition, it should be noted that mutual funds do not fall into the VASP categories under certain conditions. Such a condition is evident in mutual funds that accept redemptions or in-kind subscriptions when using an external trading system.

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Importance of VASPs

The importance of a virtual service provider is also one of the most important highlights you need to understand. The definition of VASP focuses on the capture of certain economic activities and activities. Interestingly, VASPs are not dependent on any particular entity. On the contrary, virtual property service providers are largely concerned about the approach an individual follows in using virtual property. The FATF itself has stated that any person who engages in the activities outlined by the FATF as a legal or naturalized company can be considered a VASP. The technology they use for virtual asset operations has no effect on the VASP rating.

The significance of the FATF recommendations to VASPs means that some units of digital assets, such as miners, could not become VASPs. One miner could not have the necessary qualities to be classified as a provider of virtual property. On the other hand, the operation of a mining pool under FATF guidelines may classify them as VASP.

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Scope of decentralized exchanges as VASP

Once the discussions on virtual resources have become apparent with regard to VASP, it is important to think decentralized exchange. Can they serve as excellent examples of virtual property service providers? The good news is that decentralized exchanges or DEXs meet the requirements of VASP with confidence. DEXs or others distributed applications (dApps) and their owner or operator may meet certain conditions by meeting the requirements of the VASP. For example, they must secure or perform an exchange or transfer in a traditional currency or virtual asset.

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So it is clear that, according to the FATF, a virtual property service provider can help improve AML practices. The complex factor here refers to the interchangeability of terms such as virtual assets, virtual currency, and digital assets. Therefore, classifying an unprotected wallet as an unauthorized VASP may impose specific AML obligations.

It makes sense, of course, to think about the long-term picture with VASP. Interestingly, the launch of Cayman’s Virtual Asset Service Provider system paints a favorable picture for the future of VASP devices. Learn more about virtual property providers and how to take advantage of them block chain now!

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About the author

Gwyneth Iredale

Evangelical software for blockchain technologies; reducing friction in online shopping, bridging the gap between marketing, sales and customer success. More than 20 years of experience in SaaS business development and digital marketing.


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