Mayer Brown

August 19, 2022


Digital Assets Download, Powered by Mayer Brown

It’s "Too Darn Hot" – but Not for the Digital Assets Download!

With summer in full swing in the Northern Hemisphere, the title of Cole Porter’s song (wonderfully rendered by Ella Fitzgerald here) also describes the recent developments in digital and crypto-assets. In the latest Digital Assets Download, Mayer Brown’s multidisciplinary team breaks down the latest (and hottest) topics in this space.

For the Uninitiated: What Is the Digital Assets Download? A curated mix of insights and headlines that provide a Layer 3 Legal Perspective™ on the digital assets multiverse—created by Mayer Brown’s global Digital Assets, Blockchain & Cryptocurrency group.

Check out all of our previous editions of the Digital Assets Download here.

EDITOR’S NOTE: We are currently on our “summer production schedule.” Our global team will continue to provide legal commentary and insights on events as they occur, and we will resume our biweekly publication schedule on Friday, September 16. 


The Lead Block

Original Mayer Brown content, perspectives and insights from across our global platform that touch on digital assets, decentralized finance, cryptocurrencies and related fields.

Crypto Guidance Released by US Federal Reserve

On August 16, 2022, the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (“Federal Reserve”) issued guidance for banking organizations engaging or seeking to engage in crypto-asset-related activities. This guidance is the latest step by US federal banking regulators to define and limit the regulatory perimeter for crypto-asset-related activities of banking organizations. Most importantly, the guidance adopts a broad—and not entirely clear—definition of “crypto-asset-related activity” and requires banking organizations regulated by the Federal Reserve to notify their supervisory point of contacts on their existing, and prior to engaging in new, crypto-asset-related activities. In this Legal Update, we provide background on the regulation of crypto-asset-related activities by banking organizations, summarize this Federal Reserve guidance, and discuss its implications for banking organizations.

The Key (Terms) to Unlocking the Market: Contractual Standards for Digital Asset Derivatives

The recent volatility in the cryptocurrency markets has not tempered the momentum toward developing contractual standards and norms for digital asset derivatives. What are the key issues for crypto/digital assets derivatives, which are different from other asset classes such as equities and credit? This post looks at four of the key issues that parties to a cryptocurrency derivative need to consider.

The UCC Emerging Technologies Committee – Part II (Chattel Paper)

This column reviewed certain proposed revisions to the Uniform Commercial Code being considered by the Uniform Commercial Code and Emerging Technologies Committee, a collaborative effort sponsored by the Uniform Law Commission and American Law Institute. See Virtual Currencies (and Other Digital Assets) Under the UCC, 25 N.Y.L.J. 266 (Aug. 5, 2021).




A curated selection of headlines and news from around this multiverse—including deals, developments and other disruptions in DeFi.

Crypto Hacks Soar as North Korea Targets DeFi. Read More >>

Crypto Rules Crackdown Looms for $150 Billion Stablecoin Market. Read More >>

US Senator Toomey Questions FDIC Over “Choke Point”-esque Crackdown on Banks and Crypto. Read More >>

US Regulator “Improperly” Pushing Banks to Avoid Serving Crypto Companies, Lawmaker Says. Read More >>

US Fed Opens Pathway for Crypto Banks to Tap Central Banking System. Read More >>

FTC Probes BitMart Exchange Breach, Marking Agency’s First Crypto Case. Read More >>

UN Trade Body Calls for Halting Cryptocurrency Rise in Developing Countries. Read More >>

InvestHK Opens CBDC Fast Track Programme.

Merchants Getting Ready for Crypto [nearly 75% of retailers plan to accept either cryptocurrency or stablecoin payments within the next two years according to a June survey conducted by Deloitte]. Read More >>

A Senate Proposal Would Give CFTC Responsibility for Policing Bitcoin, Ethereum. Read More >>

Crypto Community Split on Treasury’s Tornado Cash Sanctions. Read More >>

Colombia Explores Creating a CBDC to Combat Tax Evasion. Read More >>

Bitcoin Miners Are in Distress.




Selected events for deeper dives into different parts of the digital assets and DeFi world.

Alternative Finance Summit 2022: Fintech, Blockchain and Crowdfunding

Join Mayer Brown partner Anna Pinedo during the “Turbulent Year in the Markets After Returning From Covid-19: Securities Offering and Private Placement Developments” panel on September 21, 2022, at 9:10 am EDT. This panel will discuss the residual impact of COVID-19 on offerings and placements, SEC guidances on SPACs, and other relevant topics. For more information, including how to register, please visit the event website.




For those new to the digital assets and DeFi world, each edition of the Digital Assets Download will highlight a different term to help you be a part of the conversation.

A “wallet” is a hardware device or software program that contains cryptocurrency keys (i.e., the passwords used to access and manage ownership of crypto assets).

Cold Wallet: A cold wallet is a cryptocurrency wallet that is not connected to the internet. These include paper wallets (where the private keys used to manage the wallet are written on a physical piece of paper and accessible only to the holder of the paper), offline desktop wallets (where the private keys are stored on a computer that is never connected to the internet) and modern hardware wallets (where the private keys are stored on a small USB stick that is protected by a PIN that must be keyed physically). Cold wallets are considered more secure than hot wallets because stealing from a cold wallet would require physical possession of the wallet (together with any PINs or passwords needed to access the wallet).

Hot Wallet: A hot wallet is a cryptocurrency wallet that is connected to the internet. These include web-based wallets, mobile wallets, and online desktop wallets. Hot wallets are easy to use because the private keys necessary to manage the wallet are stored together with the wallet online. However, they are the most vulnerable to attack for the same reason. Savvy users are unlikely to hold significant amounts of cryptocurrency in hot wallets.




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