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Information and Resources for Virtual Currency Business Activity (BitLicense)

As stated in 23 NYCRR 200.3(a), “No Person shall, without a license obtained from the superintendent …, engage in any Virtual Currency Business Activity.”

23 NYCRR 200.2(q) provides, in part: "Virtual Currency Business Activity means the conduct of any one of the following types of activities involving New York or a New York Resident:

  1. receiving Virtual Currency for Transmission or Transmitting Virtual Currency, except where the transaction is undertaken for non-financial purposes and does not involve the transfer of more than a nominal amount of Virtual Currency;
  2. storing, holding, or maintaining custody or control of Virtual Currency on behalf of others;
  3. buying and selling Virtual Currency as a customer business;
  4. performing Exchange Services as a customer business; or
  5. controlling, administering or issuing a Virtual Currency.”

For licensing requirements see 23 NYCRR Part 200.


On October 1st, 2018, the New York State Department of Financial Services (DFS) transitioned virtual currency business activity applications to the Nationwide Multistate Licensing System and Registry (NMLS) to manage license applications and ongoing regulation.  NMLS was created by the Conference of State Bank Supervisors (CSBS) and began operations in January 2008.


BitLicense FAQs

The Department has prepared responses to a series of frequently asked questions about the BitLicense, including which activities may require licensure and which may be exempt. These questions and answers may be updated from time to time as necessary.


Additional questions regarding the VC license or licensing process may be referred to and should include contact information.

Institutions We Supervise

The Department of Financial Services supervises many different types of institutions. Supervision by DFS may entail chartering, licensing, registration requirements, examination, etc. The Who We Supervise search application can help you find out whether an institution is regulated and/or licensed by DFS, and what additional locations or branches they may have.


Updated 09/21/2018

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