The August 2022 DFPI Bulletin focuses on a crypto-asset survey and consumer alert, and AARP’s Scam Chat, among other topics.

Editor’s note — The California Department of Financial Protection and Innovation (DFPI, formerly the Department of Business Oversight) supervises, licenses, and regulates a variety of financial institutions, including some real estate mortgage loan originators (MLOs) holding a Nationwide Multistate (or Mortgage) Licensing System and Registry (NMLS) license. Alongside the California Department of Real Estate (DRE), the DFPI shares the responsibility for overseeing MLOs depending on their license use.

Licensees, keep apprised of August 2022’s MLO news and events below.

Crypto Asset-Related Products and Services Survey

As crypto assets ballooned (and deflated) through the pandemic, regulation and oversight is more important than ever. The DFPI sent out a voluntary survey on July 28, 2022 to all DFPI-licensed banks, credit unions, and trust companies concerning blockchain technologies and financial products and services related to crypto assets.

The survey asked licensees about how they use blockchain tech and crypto asset-related financial products and services, plus any initiatives under consideration. The survey also asked licensees to point out areas that should be addressed in guidance the DFPI intends to issue by March 31, 2023, per Governor Gavin Newsom’s Executive Order relating to crypto assets and blockchain technologies.

The deadline for licensees to respond is August 26, 2022. It was emailed to each institutions’ designated email address and contains a personalized secure link.

For questions about the survey content, contact Senior Counsel with the DFPI’s Office of Financial Technology Innovation (OFTI), Adam Wright, at

Crypto-Interest Accounts Consumer Alert

The DFPI is also investigating companies offering interest-bearing crypto asset accounts. An interest-bearing crypto-interest account allows customers to lend crypto assets and receive interest paid in crypto assets in exchange.

As Bitcoin (BTC) briefly dipped below $20,000 in June 2022, panicked crypto exchanges froze withdrawals to stop the hemorrhaging. The DFPI has issued a Consumer Alert to warn California consumers and investors that many crypto-interest account providers may not have properly disclosed risks customers face when they deposit crypto assets into these exchanges and platforms.

The DFPI encourages consumers to exercise extreme caution before responding to any solicitation offering investment or financial services. California customers of crypto-interest account providers that have slowed or paused withdrawals or transfers of crypto assets are encouraged to contact the DFPI at or (866) 275-2677.

To file a formal complaint, visit the DFPI File a Complaint Webpage.

Invitation for Comments

On July 15, 2022, the Commissioner invited comments on draft text related to the scope, annual report, and document retention provisions of the Debt Collection Licensing Act.

This draft text initially contained an error in proposed section 1850.2(a). The corrected draft text clarifies that neither residential rental debt nor debt owed to a Homeowners’ Association constitutes consumer debt under the Debt Collection Licensing Act.

The corrected draft is hosted on the DFPI website. The deadline to submit comments is Monday, August 29, 2022.

Scam Chat Wednesdays

AARP California is partnering with the DFPI to better inform consumers of the latest scams and fraud schemes by hosting a new weekly webinar series: Scam Chat Wednesdays. These webinars cover a variety of topics including trending scams, home improvement and solar scams, investment fraud schemes, and financial empowerment.

To register for Scam Chat Wednesdays, visit:

Mortgage and Payday Lending 2021 Annual Reports

As of July, the DFPI has made available annual reports for the California Residential Mortgage Lending Act (CRMLA) and the California Deferred Deposit Transaction Law (CDDTL) — also known as payday lending.

Both sets of annual reports are published in July of each year, and are available for review below:

That’s a wrap on the August 2022 DFPI Bulletin. Find out more about the topics mentioned here by reading the full bulletin on the DFPI website.