Coincheck, a Japan-based crypto exchange that lost over $500 million in investors’ funds due to a hacking attack in early-2018, is now close to receiving full licensing from Japan’s chief financial watchdog, the Financial Services Agency (FSA).
The news of the FSA’s decision to issue the exchange it’s operational licensing was first reported by Nikkei Asian Review, who stated that the license will be issued by the end of 2018.
According to the Nikkei report, the FSA judged that the company had improved its customer protection and other systems after being purchased by online brokerage Monex Group in April.
At the time of the hack, Coincheck was Japan’s largest cryptocurrency exchange and was forced to halt trading, leaving its users with no way to sell their holdings as the crypto market tanked.
The FSA’s decision to grant a license to Coincheck is expected to trigger the resumption of the agency’s approval process. According to the Nikkei report, nearly 200 companies are said to be waiting for licenses, but only about 50 are believed to have hammered out concrete plans.
The FSA said that before deciding whether to grant more licenses, it will scrutinize business plans, anti-hacking measures and the effectiveness of shields put up against other misconduct. Exchanges applying for approval will have to answer a 400-item questionnaire.
The FSA’s strict screening of Coincheck has been viewed as a message to other exchanges that they should voluntarily exit the market if they are unable to meet the FSA’s strict regulatory standards.