Gary Gensler, the Chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), has been caught promoting the cryptocurrency Algorand. Critics are calling him a hypocrite due to his regulatory crackdown on Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. Footage has emerged of Gensler speaking highly of Italian computer scientist Silvio Micali, the founder of Algorand, and the project’s performance. This isn’t the first time Gensler has spoken highly of the cryptocurrency at public events since at least 2019. Despite his anti-crypto stance at the SEC, Gensler is an instructor on a MIT Open Learning course on blockchain and money. One of Gensler’s colleagues criticized his opposition to blockchain technology. The promotion of a security falls under US law, and last year the SEC took legal action against Kim Kardashian for touting a crypto security.
On the same day that the SEC named six crypto tokens listed on Bittrex as securities, Algorand was among them. According to the SEC, these tokens should be securities because investors would expect to profit from them. Gensler’s promotion of Algorand as a security raises questions about ethics and regulatory compliance, especially since he is head of the organization that oversees the regulation of securities. It is not yet clear if the new appointment, Inspector General Deborah J. Jeffrey, will investigate Gensler for potentially promoting Algorand as a security.
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