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Thursday, May 23, 2019

Crypto markets this week reached their highest level since August of 2018. Markets then corrected downwards, however, sentiment is still bullish, with major news networks covering the resurgence of crypto. 

Bitcoin, Ethereum, BCH, and Gemini exchange’s US Dollar-based stablecoin can now be used to purchase goods from Starbucks, Whole Foods, Nordstrom and many more retailers. The US-based payments service, Flexa in collaboration with Gemini confirmed that their new crypto app, Spedn, will enable instant crypto payments in participating stores. 

It was reported that BitOasis exchange, which is based in the United Arab Emirates, received a preliminary license to operate. If a full license is granted, BitOasis would be the first officially approved and regulated exchange in the region to offer crypto trading and storage. 

San Francisco Open Exchange, or SFOX, has partnered with M.Y. Safra Bank, to bring Federal deposit insurance to the Bitcoin trading space. The move represents the first time that crypto traders will have their funds guaranteed by the state, up to $250,000. This is another strong signal for the increasing integration of crypto into mainstream finance. 

New Zealand’s Cryptopia exchange was hacked in January of this year. The exchange went offline this week, displaying only a message that a firm has been appointed to handle liquidation proceedings. Most users have been unable to withdraw funds from Cryptopia since the breach occurred. 
Courtesy: 99bitcoins.com

Wednesday, May 8, 2019

Binance has just suffered a $40.7M Bitcoin theft, its largest loss ever
Binance has long been lauded for its top-notch security, but this week the exchange discovered a security breach that saw more than $40M in Bitcoin stolen. The exchange is still in the process of identifying impacted customer accounts, and will be using its SAFU fund to cover the shortfall in funds lost by affected customers.

Inside Zuckerberg’s decade-long battle over crypto with the Winklevoss twins
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and the Winklevoss twins have always had a contentious relationship. But the twins’ deep involvement with crypto could prove to give them a leg up on the race with Facebook to develop the world’s leading cryptocurrency. The rivalry between the two parties has only intensified in recent years as both begin to compete more heavily on the crypto front, even after the Winklevoss twins won a $65M settlement from Facebook for slighting them in its early days. 

Facebook’s new digital coin could double or triple crypto’s global user base
Recent analysis has shown that the introduction of Facebook’s digital coin could potentially triple the number of crypto users worldwide. The rollout could also drive an overall uplift in the markets, particularly if the cryptocurrency sees heavy usage early on. The social networking giant is presently searching for investment and technology partners to help it build and launch the new payment solution.

A Belgian programmer solved this perplexing crypto puzzle 15 years too soon
Last month, a Belgian programmer solved a decades-old cryptographic puzzle that has eluded even the most masterful problem solvers. Despite the puzzle being devised 20 years ago, its underlying principles have a significant amount of overlap with existing crypto protocols that leverage blockchain technology.

The story of Crypto Capital’s dark past, and its ties to the crypto industry
Crypto Capital is quietly becoming a quasi-central bank of the crypto industry, helping offer banking services to crypto exchanges, blockchain startups, and the like. Incorporated in Panama, the shadowy company has been helping exchanges like Bitfinex handle billions in customer funds. Two of its employees were arrested for money laundering earlier this week, casting a shadow over the organization.

Bitmain has reportedly cut its crypto mining capacity by up to 88%
This week, Bitmain revealed that it had reduced its Bitcoin mining power by 88%. The statistic is indicative of an overall reduction in capacity, and signals that the crypto mining giant is beginning to shut down at least some of its mining equipment. The news also runs counter to Bitmain’s claim that it would be deploying $80M worth of new mining equipment later this year.

Here’s how Cosmos is looking to put the global economy on the blockchain
Cosmos is a relatively new blockchain project that enables independent blockchains to interact with one another. This could open up an entirely new set of use cases and opportunities for crypto platforms to collaborate, and it’s perhaps the most promising interoperability solution yet.

A “blockchain bandit” is guessing private keys and scoring millions in crypto
Security researchers have discovered that a mystery thief is stealing millions of dollars in crypto, simply by guessing private keys. While the concept is simple, the execution of the theft appears to be quite complex, involving an array of advanced cryptographic techniques used to “predict” a user’s private key.
Courtesy: CRYPTO WEEKLY

Monday, May 6, 2019

The Bakkt Stock Exchange is nearing regulation. The company's high level of investment in the New York Stock Exchange, it has acquired a company specializing in cold storage for the preservation of digital assets. Bakkt also unveiled a partnership with the New York Mellon Bank to implement cold storage solutions at its secure facilities.

A MasterCard credit card requires regulatory approval for use in Europe. The prepaid card will allow customers to convert and send crypto assets wherever MasterCard is obtained. The request is under review by the Gibraltar Financial Authority.

A recent poll by Harris Poll for Blockchin Capital reveals that 89% of American adults are aware of Bitcoin, 43% see Bitcoin as positive financial innovation, 33% believe most people will use Bitcoin within 10 years, and 27% Years. All of these positive statistics have grown since the last survey in 2017, indicating that the youngest demographics are good for Bitcoin.

A HSBC account linked to the Betfinx is perceived by the US Department of Justice. The firm claimed that the account was used to channel money from the American Crypto Exchange, which was banned for US banking customers. Moreover, Zhao Dong, a major shareholder in BitFinex, said on Twitter that the stock exchange is looking to release its Toucan to raise $ 1 billion.
Courtesy: /macrobit.co.il

Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Crypto payments processor, Moon, announced a new Chrome browser extension which will allow Amazon purchases via Bitcoin’s Lightning Network. Coinbase account holders will also be able to pay via Bitcoin’s base layer, Ethereum, Litecoin, and Bitcoin Cash.

 A survey of South Koreans revealed that 7.4% of the country’s population owns some form of crypto. South Koreans own an average of over $6,000 worth of crypto, which is a 64% annual increase. People in their 50s hold the largest crypto balances.

 South Korea’s Samsung conglomerate reported they have invested $2.9 million into French hardware wallet manufacturer, Ledger. This funding brings Ledger’s total valuation to $290 million. As we covered in previous reports, Samsung’s new S10 mobile includes support for crypto wallets.

 More than 400,000 confirmed Bitcoin transactions were recorded this week, which is the highest level since the transaction volume spikes seen briefly in December of 2017. However, the average transaction fee is about 6 times lower than what it was then, indicating that Bitcoin’s transaction processing capacity has greatly improved.

 New York’s Attorney General announced a court order against iFinex, owners of the Bitfinex crypto exchange and Tether stablecoin. The state’s attorney alleges that iFinex secretly used $850 million reserved for backing the Tether stablecoin to disguise customer and corporate losses on the Bitfinex exchange. Bitfinex denied the allegations, including the loss of any funds in a statement.
99Bitcoins


Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Belorussian leader, Alexander Lukashenko, last week called for a large Bitcoin mining center to be
constructed near the country’s new nuclear power plant which is expected to be fully operational by
2020. Belarus has already developed a special economic zone, the High-Tech Park, with significant
tax breaks for IT and crypto companies.

Sweden’s largest political party, the Social Democratic Party, tweeted that the Swedish Krona was
abolished in favor of Bitcoin and renamed its account to “Bitcoin Democrats”. Swedes were further
surprised by tweets about rising taxes and crime stats. It was revealed later that the account had
been hacked by a group of hackers who wanted to raise the attention to security gaps.

Cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase is expanding crypto-to-crypto conversions and trading services
to 11 more countries. The San Francisco-based announced that customers in several countries
in South-America and Asia can now access crypto-to-crypto exchanging services. The company said
that it is offering the services via both Coinbase.com as well as Coinbase Pro, its professional trading
platform.

Andrew Yang, a Democratic candidate in America’s 2020 election, issued a statement arguing the need for uniform regulations for cryptocurrency. Yang said that different rules for crypto
among various states and agencies create unnecessary confusion. Yang also referred to New York’s
BitLicense as “onerous” and detrimental to the growth of crypto in the US.
Courtesy: 99 Bitcoins

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

  • France is reportedly going to try to convince other European Union member states to adopt cryptocurrency regulationssimilar to its own
     
  • Corporate Traveller, the largest travel management firm in the United Kingdom, is now accepting Bitcoin for payments
     
  • Japanese financial services giant SBI Holdings will delist bitcoin cash (BCH) from its virtual currency exchange in June 2019, following several major crypto trading platforms delisting BSV, while OKEx announced that it decided not to delist BSV
     
  • EToroX, the blockchain division of global social trading platform eToro, has launched a crypto exchange for pro traders and issued eight stablecoins
     
  • Institutional-grade investment management firm Arca Funds filed with the SEC to issue digitized securities as ERC-20 tokens on the ethereum blockchain
    Courtesy: 
    Cointelegraph.com

Tuesday, April 9, 2019

Professional crypto traders suggested that this week’s dramatic price rise was a result of a major short squeeze in a low liquidity environment. A major Bitcoin buy order was split between at least three major exchanges, and the resulting upwards price pressure led to $500 million in desperate short-covering occurring within an hour on BitMEX.

 As usually happens when Bitcoin price news is trending, search volume is exploding. Google Trends reveal that search interest for the keyword “Bitcoin” is at its highest level since last November. Meanwhile, China’s major search engine, Baidu, reported that “Bitcoin” was its fastest-rising search term.

 The US Security and Exchange Commission released regulatory guidance to help clarify which crypto offerings constitute a security, and thus fall under existing securities laws. Although the ICO mania has ended, any project issuing tokens to US citizens should now have much greater regulatory clarity.

Switzerland’s publishing giant, Netzmedien AG announced it will start paying salaries in Bitcoin, after workers voted to receive BTC rather than Swiss Francs. The company publishes 8 technology magazines and a website. Switzerland remains at the forefront of mainstream Bitcoin adoption.

 And finally, the World Economic Forum issued a report that over 40 central banks are exploring blockchain technology, some with a view to creating their own fiatcoins. A former under-secretary -general of the UN, called for a global currency based on the IMF’s SDR instrument.
| 99Bitcoins