The US Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) Crypto Assets and Cyber Unit is seeking to expand its team with three new hires, indicating its commitment to enforcing regulations in the industry. The unit is looking to hire general attorneys in San Francisco, New York, and Washington, DC, with responsibilities that include conducting rapid investigations into cyber issues and cryptoasset securities. The SEC unit has been actively recruiting for new positions following a series of enforcement actions against bad actors in the industry over the past year. Salaries for the legal positions range between $140,830 and $259,590, depending on the location.
In 2022, the total amount of fines levied by the SEC against bad actors in the crypto market reached $2.6 billion, with many of the enforcement actions relating to fraud and unregistered securities offerings. BUSD issuer Paxos, Terraform Labs, and FTX are among the firms that have faced regulatory scrutiny. Meanwhile, industry leaders like Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong have called for regulatory clarity, warning that courts may have to step in if regulators fail to provide it.
The SEC is not the only US regulator with a specialized unit dedicated to safeguarding investors in the crypto market. The US Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), which oversees national banks, has recently established a new fintech office to keep up with technological advancements such as digital assets. Called the Office of Financial Technology, it will assist the US Treasury in analyzing developments related to crypto and help oversee fintech partnerships.