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Digital Assets Part 1: A Primer for Identifying and Mitigating Risks

Updated: Jun 19, 2023

On May 24th, 2023, The ACAMS New York Chapter held an online event titled Digital Assets Part 1: A Primer for Identifying and Mitigating Risks, which was sponsored by Hummingbird. The event was moderated by Nishi K. Gupta (Head of Compliance, Eco, Inc.) and included the following panelists: Pete deVolpi (Vice President, Global Wholesale Banking AML Advisory, MUFG); Thom Hook (Chief Compliance Officer, Bitstamp US); Wadeeha Jackson (Solutions Architect, Regulatory Technology and Financial Crimes, Hummingbird); and Kristina Sanger (Principal, Consulting, Ernst & Young). To access materials from the event, click here.

The discussion began with an overview of the different eras of the internet from web 1 to web 3, listed examples of technology representative of each era, and an examination of what digital ownership means in web 3. From there the panel discussed the defining characteristics and concepts of web 3; specifically, some of the relevant specifics of decentralization versus centralization, cryptography, hashing, and blockchains.


From there the panel defined digital assets and provided an overview of the various types of tokens that exist in the current digital asset ecosystem, such as fungible and non-fungible tokens, security tokens, governance tokens, and utility tokens. The panel also discussed and described the broader digital asset ecosystem which includes banks and other financial institutions, fintechs, developers, and regulators. At that point, the panel described the current regulatory framework both in the US and internationally, including what are the risk management expectations, including financial compliance controls, on US financial institutions with respect to digital asset clients or customers.


After describing and discussing financial crime typologies that entities in the digital asset ecosystem can expect, the panel then fielded some questions from the audience in attendance online. Lastly, each member of the panel provided a key takeaway in closing and previewed the content for Part 2 of this two-part series on digital assets.

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