Sunday, December 29, 2019

Huobi Japan to raise another $4.6M in January 2020

 



Huobi Japan, the Japanese subsidiary of Singaporean crypto giant Huobi Group, is set to raise $4.6 million in January 2020. The exchange will raise the funding from Japanese financial services firm Tokai Tokyo Financial Holdings. The new funding comes just two months after the exchange raised another $4.6 million from FPG Corporation.

Tokai Tokyo signed a business alliance agreement with Huobi Japan which will see the two firms strengthen cooperation in the digital assets business. The financial services giant, which mainly deals in brokerage services, believes that blockchain and cryptos are about to explode in the Japanese market and it doesn't want to miss out.

In its press release, the company stated, "Here in Japan, the relevant ministerial ordinances are expected in force next spring. Therefore, we believe that the business dealing with crypto assets and blockchain will accelerate further."

Tokai Tokyo will promote new businesses in areas such as initial exchange offerings, crypto exchange, local currency issuance and the storage and management of cryptos. The firm will "consider expanding this business to partner regional banks in the future."

Huobi Japan was launched in January 2019. This was after Huobi Group acquired local crypto exchange BitTrade in September 2018, rebranding it into its Japanese subsidiary.

In October, the company raised ¥500 million ($4.6 million) through the issuance of new shares to FPG Corporation, a Japanese financial services group. The exchange pledged to channel the funds to expansion, staying true to their promise that they would 'aggressively scale up their platform.'

While Huobi Group has found great success in Japan, its push into the United States hasn't been as smooth. Last month, the exchange announced that it was set to freeze all U.S. accounts in a few weeks' time. The freezing followed months of gradual disabling of U.S. accounts as regulatory scrutiny mounted. Users were urged to withdraw their funds before November 13 or risk losing them.

Earlier this month, its U.S. subsidiary HBUS announced that it was halting operations. HBUS was around for just over 18 months before calling it quits. In more positive news however, Huobi has continued to expand into other territories including Thailand and Argentina.

Sunday, December 22, 2019

Why Quantum Computing’s Threat to Crypto May Be Further out Than Previously Thought

 


According to one researcher, quantum computing faces more hurdles than many realize when it comes to achieving viability in breaking encryption. In a recent report Dr. Subhash Kak, Regents Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Oklahoma State University, notes that there are issues such as "noise" and error correction that render the buzz about quantum supremacy when it comes to Bitcoin, still largely theoretical.

Where Quantum Supremacy Falls Short
In essence "quantum supremacy" refers to the demonstration that a quantum computer can solve some problem classical computers can't. There's no doubt this has been done, but the important question for those in the crypto space centers on what kind of problem is being solved. While the development of quantum supremacy is a haunting specter indeed for hodlers worried about their private keys, there's yet little evidence the problems being solved by this technology have much utility in cracking encryption where cryptos are concerned.

"These companies are trying to build hardware that replicates the circuit model of classical computers. However, current experimental systems have less than 100 qubits. To achieve useful computational performance, you probably need machines with hundreds of thousands of qubits," states Dr. Subhash Kak in a recent article.

Though groups like D-wave boast 2000 qubits (quantum bits) the applications are different. D-wave's focus is on optimization via a process called quantum annealing which, according to Kak, is a "narrower approach to quantum computing … where qubits are used to speed up optimization problems." As such, D-wave's claims have garnered some criticism, with one recent report on the topic calling the D-wave system "skim milk" compared to other computers.

Noise and Error Correction
The real difficulty in achieving practical quantum code-cracking resides in the concepts of noise and error correction, according to Kak. The researcher details:

"For computers to function properly, they must correct all small random errors. In a quantum computer, such errors arise from the non-ideal circuit elements and the interaction of the qubits with the environment around them."

For these reasons the qubits can lose coherency in a fraction of a second and, therefore, the computation must be completed in even less time. If random errors – which are inevitable in any physical system – are not corrected, the computer's results will be worthless.

This error correction complicates things even more. The potential for noise-related errors necessitates the need for more qubit power. Theoretical physicist Mikhail Dyakonov describes the mind-boggling nature of the problem, saying:

"While a conventional computer with N bits at any given moment must be in one of its 2N possible states, the state of a quantum computer with N qubits is described by the values of the 2N quantum amplitudes, which are continuous parameters (ones that can take on any value, not just a 0 or a 1). This is the origin of the supposed power of the quantum computer, but it is also the reason for its great fragility and vulnerability.

So the number of continuous parameters describing the state of such a useful quantum computer at any given moment … is much, much greater than the number of subatomic particles in the observable universe.

In other words, the strength of practical quantum computing can also be seen as its Achilles heel. Because it can process so many variables, these seemingly endless variables also open the door for greater potential error. Resulting hardware and logistical considerations are not as often discussed as other issues, but according to the two researchers these areas are of critical importance.

Looking Past the Hype
Dyakonov, like Kak, points to the hype surrounding the field of quantum computing, which has been in development and a source of energized speculation for decades. While it is unclear exactly how far classified government and high-level scientific developments may have come by now, as far as the educated observer can tell, it seems there's a long way to go before the Bitcoin network may be in danger. At which point algorithmic upgrades have been suggested by many as a potential solution.

Still, like ongoing work in nuclear fusion, quantum computing is not to be ignored. An unforeseen breakthrough could theoretically happen at any time and change the game. Kak, for his part, remains skeptical: "As someone who has worked on quantum computing for many years, I believe that due to the inevitability of random errors in the hardware, useful quantum computers are unlikely to ever be built."

This week in tech: Asia shows the blockchain world how it’s done

 


More global giants continue to adopt the blockchain, setting the stage for what could be a momentous year in 2020 for the technology. Asia has continued to set the pace, with China, South Korea and India leading the pack.

This week, China's internet giant ByteDance launched a new partnership which will develop blockchain and AI solutions for its clients. Known mainly as the owner of video sharing app TikTok, ByteDance partnered with a state media conglomerate to launch a new company named Pengpai Audiovisual Technology Co.

Also in China, the country's judiciary revealed this week that the smart courts system has been quite a success. The courts are powered by blockchain and other technologies such as AI and cloud computing. According to a recent report, these smart courts settled over 3 million cases between March and October this year.

The race for a national digital currency is still on course, with Iran revealing its intentions this week. The country's president proposed the development of a Muslim crypto this week, aimed at checking the U.S. economic dominance. He called on Muslim nations to come together and back this crypto as they seek to strengthen financial and trade cooperation.

This week, Thailand announced that it would apply blockchain in the issuance of its electronic visa on arrival. The application of the technology will speed up the process, while enhancing transparency and security.

Over in East Asia, a leading telecom operator announced the launch of a blockchain-based currency to revitalize the local economy. South Korea's largest telecom company KT partnered with Busan city to launch the currency, which will be known as Dongbaekjeon. Busan, South Korea's second largest city after Seoul, believes the currency will "revitalize its local economy and ease the management burden of small business."

In South Asia, one of the largest consultancy companies released a blockchain development kit this week, aiming to accelerate the development of decentralized applications. Tata Consultancy Services, which is the largest Indian company by market capitalization, launched the kit to allow enterprises to build and deploy dApps in a simplified way. The company claims that developers who use their kit write smart contracts 40% faster than their peers.

In Hong Kong, the United Nations is turning to blockchain to prevent the exploitation of migrant workers. Through the International Organization for Migration, the U.N. launched a blockchain tool that will introduce transparency in the immigration sector. Hong Kong is home to nearly 400,000 migrants and over half this number has been exploited in one way or another.

Over in the U.S., chipmaker AMD this week joined a blockchain alliance which aims at promoting the technology in the gaming industry. AMD becomes the first major player to join the Blockchain Game Alliance. Still in the U.S., a Gartner report this week revealed that over 75% of major companies are integrating blockchain and IoT in their operations. According to the report, transparency and security are some of the key reasons for the continued uptake.

The week also saw some legal enforcement, with two Russian crypto miners charged for using government resources to mine. This came just a month after a Russian nuclear physicist had been sentenced to three years in jail for a similar crime.

Sunday, December 15, 2019

Crypto bank SEBA expands to nine new jurisdictions

 


Cryptocurrency-focused banking startup SEBA Crypto AG has expanded into nine new jurisdictions, just months after it received a Swiss banking license. With its latest expansion, the startup aims to bridge the gap between digital currencies and the legacy banking system.

Based in the Zug crypto valley in Switzerland, SEBA aims to offer the crypto industry with the banking services that it has lacked for so long. It obtained a Swiss banking license in August and became fully operational a month ago.

In a statement shared with media houses, the company revealed that it had expanded into nine new jurisdictions. These are Hong Kong, Italy, Singapore, France, Germany, Austria, the Netherlands, the U.K and Portugal.

For SEBA, it's all about bridging the gap between the traditional financial system and the new era of digital currencies. As CoinGeek has reported severally, crypto companies have struggled to access even the most basic banking services. For banks, it doesn't matter how big the company is or how much revenue the bank stands to lose, as has been seen with the Bitfinex banking debacle.

In its statement, SEBA criticized the great discrepancy that exists between legacy financial institutions and the crypto industry, stating, "More than 10 years after the invention of Bitcoin, there is still a tremendous gap between traditional banking on one side and decentralized finance on the other side."

SEBA provides several products to its clients, starting with the most basic bank account needs. It'll also allow its clients to tokenize all forms of assets, from real estate to investment products. It also offers an e-wallet alongside its SEBA card. Its services allow its clients to manage five cryptos currently, among them Ether, Litecoin and Stellar. They can easily exchange these cryptos into fiat on SEBA's platform, and vice versa.

As we reported previously, SEBA's promising future has pooled in investors, allowing it to raise $100 million in its most recent funding round. At the time, the startup's CEO Guido Buehler reiterated that its mission is "to become a market leader in the convergence of traditional finance with the crypto economy."
 


Indian Parliament member Dr. Subramanian Swamy has shared his view on cryptocurrency. Advocating for India to make the transition to crypto, he reportedly said, "cryptocurrency is inevitable." The lawmaker will chair a conference at the UN India's headquarters next week where issues surrounding cryptocurrency in the country will be discussed.

Indian Member of Parliament (MP) Dr. Subramanian Swamy has reportedly spoken about cryptocurrency following the statements made last week on digital currency by the governor of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI). The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP was nominated to Rajya Sabha, the upper house of India's parliament, by the President of India. According to Sarkaritel news portal, Dr. Swamy supports cryptocurrency adoption. He was quoted on Wednesday as saying:

Last week, RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das revealed that the central bank had examined internally the prospect of issuing an RBI-backed digital rupee. "I think it is an area where the Reserve Bank will certainly look at seriously at an appropriate time," he confirmed. The RBI, however, has not warmed up to cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin. Its banking restriction, enforced on the Indian cryptocurrency industry in July last year, is still in effect. The supreme court is expected to resume hearing the arguments against this ban in January.

Crypto Conference at UN India
Dr. Swamy will chair a closed-door conference at UN India's headquarters in New Delhi on Dec. 18. The event is co-organized by United Nations Technology Innovation Lab – UNTIL India and BEGIN India Think Tank. The aim of the conference is to deliberate on methods, technology and delivery mechanisms of digital currency that make nations, particularly law enforcement, "vulnerable in monitoring/ controlling/ stopping the invisible vaporization of fiat currency towards terror financing," the UN's website described.

"The scheduled conference on cryptocurrency organized by Mr. Deepak is most timely," Dr. Swamy was quoted by the news outlet as saying. "China is today even ahead of U.S. in its decision to begin a trial run in two cities for digital transactions." Deepak Kapoor is the founder of BEGIN India Think Tank. The MP elaborated:

I advocate that India as an established super power in software should accept to make the transition to cryptocurrency.

The conference will be attended by leaders from key Indian investigative agencies, law enforcement agencies, as well as state and central government IT departments. BEGIN India Think Tank focuses on addressing issues surrounding blockchain technology and cryptocurrency. The organization helps investigative agencies, law enforcement agencies, and banking institutions understand cryptocurrency and blockchain technology. Kapoor affirmed:

We are committed to addressing a range of issues around cryptocurrency, globally, starting in India.

"From its damaging negative aspects that contribute to undermining [the] dominance of central banks in a nation's economy to the overwhelmingly positive aspects of how policy should be formulated around the most secure technology till date which was essentially built to decimate the control of governments and central banks," he continued. "We must work to retain the safeguards."

Among topics that will be discussed at the conference is how to fight crypto-related crimes. "For this purpose, such conferences are necessary in a democracy that India is, and move to digital, orderly and tamper-proof transaction just as in the past, the world had moved from barter to precious metals to paper currency for transaction," Dr. Swamy detailed.

"The banking system is unable to track any financial transactions and law enforcement agencies are helplessly unable to deal with high-end cryptocurrency technology," Kapoor remarked. "Investigators have not yet even understood how to ascertain/ calculate the total value of siphoned off funds, leave alone locating and seizing it," he further asserted.

Despite various efforts by the Indian government and law enforcement agencies, BEGIN India's founder claims that "not a single case of cryptocurrency has yet been successfully solved, nor a fraction of the money recovered so far." He noted that "Alarmingly, with each passing day, larger amounts keep getting converted to cryptocurrency and vanishing into the thin-air invisible economy, thus weakening India's economy and hurting its GDP." Meanwhile, the Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel National Police Academy has introduced a few courses teaching high ranking police officers about cryptocurrency.

Monday, December 9, 2019

Weiss Ratings Downgrades EOS to 'C-' Due to Centralization - How Other Coins Measure Up

 

Weiss Ratings has downgraded EOS once again, taking its ranking from a B to a C-. The group cites "failure to decentralize," "misallocation of resources," and a congested network as reasons for the fall in rank. "Weiss Crypto Ratings model is not based on opinion. It's driven by data," the group claims. In this article we'll look at EOS, as well as top coins by market cap to see how Weiss — and other voices in the space — view their progress.

The Weiss Rating System
The self-described "only ratings agency that combines the broadest coverage, strictest independence, complete objectivity, high ethics, and a commitment to safety," has moved EOS down to a C- rating. Weiss Crypto Ratings took to Twitter over the weekend to explain their reasoning. "We've had great respect for work and thinking that went into the EOS project. But the Weiss Crypto Ratings model is not based on opinion. It's driven by data," the group tweeted. "And that data has now caused a downgrade from B to C-. Here's why (full article to be published soon)."

The first reason given is a perceived failure to decentralize. Weiss notes that 0.01% of EOS token holders "control a whopping 68% of the voting power. So much for the claim that EOS is a major improvement over older cryptos like Bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH)," the group asserts. The second reason is a "misallocation of resources" that has resulted in network congestion, and frozen transactions for small token holders. "The issue of CPU, REX and the clogged network is too complex to explain in a simple Twitter format, so on this topic, see our article explaining EOS downgrade in detail, coming out soon," Weiss details.

Bitcoin Core
Weiss gives market cap leader Bitcoin Core (BTC) an overall rating of B+. Weak areas are "risk" and "momentum" and the coin receives a D grade in market performance. Adoption and technology both score well, getting an A. In a recent article published to the American Institute for Economic Research, Austrian economist and Bitcoin advocate Jeffrey A. Tucker seems to lend credence to the Weiss assessment on momentum, writing:

Consider the core data. Transactions per day are at 2016 levels. Exchange volume is at 2017 levels. Wallet use is at an all-time high but most new users come in through exchanges and keep their money there, which belies the hope of disintermediated money.

Ethereum
Ethereum also garners a B+ grade by the Weiss system, ranking "fair" and "excellent" in technology and adoption, respectively. A D- score in market performance counterbalances this positivity. While some in the crypto space would argue that there are serious scaling issues with Ethereum and question the technology and adoption score, Weiss nonetheless gives these an A, based on its ranking system.

XRP
XRP receives a B-, rated "very weak" in the momentum category and "weak" in the risk category. "Momentum," according to the Weiss system, "evaluates the upside potential an investor could benefit from." XRP's most highly scored aspect is adoption, categorized as "excellent." Centralization has been a big issue in the crypto space for critics of XRP, as some see the asset as being controlled directly by the company, and not a decentralized community.

Bitcoin Cash
Bitcoin Cash, whose community and tech seek to address some of the issues with BTC Tucker discusses in his article, gets an overall Weiss rating of C. Interestingly, no 90-day performance history is shown for BCH at press time, and this metric would ostensibly be needed to effectively establish risk and momentum, both of which Weiss rates as weak. In any case, BCH shines most brightly in the category of adoption, which is rated "good."

Monday, December 2, 2019

How the Upcoming Bitcoin Halving Compares to Previous Cycles

 


For those standing very close to the crypto charts, it might be easy to get discouraged by the gloomy nature of recent markets. However, new comparisons of the current halving cycle to those in the past have emerged and might put some wind back into the sails of traders, hodlers, and cryptocurrency enthusiasts in general.

Miners Unfazed as Halving Approaches
Though crypto prices took a big dip in November, with BTC falling 30% from a high of $9,486 to a bottom of around $6,575, hash rates on both the BTC and BCH chains have held relatively steady as the next block reward halving approaches. Data also points to miners hoarding coins in view of the upcoming subsidy reduction, as the event is generally viewed as price favorable. In combination with these factors, new analysis has emerged which might suggest that in spite of the recent bearish climate, things might be more on track than previously supposed.

Comparing Halving Cycles
The image above aligns the block reward halving points of three cycles (the latter half of pre-halving and the first half of post-halving), with the three cycles anchored at a common line of 100% of the cycle low. The first two cycles which are completed, and the pre-halving phase of the current cycle are displayed. Interestingly, the movements in the latter half cycles appear to follow a similar trend. As creator of the graphic, @Chartsbtc, states on their Twitter post:

Each cycle is 210,000 blocks (~4 years). This chart starts half way through the cycle and goes half way into the next cycle. This is my attempt to show the lows prior to halving and the peaks post halving but keep everything centered around the halving.

The graphic is compelling, and has many hoping for great moves price-wise in 2020 and beyond. Discussing the methodology of creating the graphic further, @Chartsbtc explains why the green price action line does not touch the 100% cycle low level: "The low was a intraday price and the chart only plots the closing prices to the nearest 105th block. I wish I actually had prices per block." They further note that viewers should "Keep in mind that each cycle peak will likely be lower than the prior one." Even so, should the trend repeat BTC could see a post-halving peak around $80,000. Still, this is all speculation, and other factors must be kept in mind.

Into 2020
With the Bitcoin Core halving estimated to be taking place in mid-May, 2020, and the Bitcoin Cash halving to likely occur a month earlier, speculation of course abounds. Other factors playing into market perception and possibly price, such as proliferating development surrounding the BCH chain, and a trend of businesses dropping BTC as a payment method due to fees and congestion (not to mention an overall shift in attitude in the BTC community from user to mere hodler), could also have unexpected affects. If the projections of the above halving data are correct, however, everyone may be in for an interesting ride in 2020.

Sunday, November 24, 2019

58% of German Banks Charge Negative Interest Rates

 


Germany's central bank, the Deutsche Bundesbank, has conducted a survey of banks charging negative interest rates on customer deposits. Some are charging retail customers as well as corporate clients. An independent price comparison portal shows which banks are currently charging for deposits and how much they are charging.

Central Bank Survey
A growing number of German banks are passing on the burden of negative interest rates to their customers as the European Central Bank (ECB) continues to maintain a negative interest rate policy (NIRP). The current ECB deposit rate is -0.5%, the lowest on record.

"Many banks in Germany have introduced negative rates on deposits," the Deutsche Bundesbank wrote in its November monthly report after conducting a survey of 220 banks at the end of September regarding their negative interest rate policies. The central bank believes that the surveyed banks constitute a representative sample of the overall sector, thereby allowing it to make qualified statements concerning the spread of negative interest rates on customer deposits in the German banking sector. The Financial Times summarized:

58% of the banks said they were levying negative rates on some corporate deposits and 23% said they were doing the same for retail depositors.

Even the country's largest banks have started charging their customers for deposits. Deutsche Bank CFO James von Moltke told analysts last month that his bank had stepped up its attempts to pass on the negative rate burden to corporate clients. "This is more difficult in the private bank business than in corporate or institutional deposits and we don't see an ability to adjust legal terms and conditions of our accounts on a broad-based basis," the CFO was quoted as saying. He added that his bank had also approached some retail clients with large deposits on the matter.

Similarly, Commerzbank CFO Stephan Engels revealed earlier this month that his bank had already been approaching wealthy retail customers holding deposits of more than 1 million euros ($1.11 million).

Which Banks Charge Negative Interest Rates
While the central bank did not provide a list of banks that are charging negative interest rates, German consumer price comparison platform Verivox has published several lists of banks that fall into this category. The platform claims to have examined the policies of over 800 German banks.

According to its current database, at least 21 banks have published their negative rate policies online and seven others are charging fees for money market accounts which are usually free. Further, the platform lists 20 other banks that the media have reported as charging for deposits but they have not published the information on their websites.

Verivox's list of 21 banks currently charging negative interest rates on customer deposits.
News.Bitcoin.com was able to verify that a number of banks on the Verivox list do charge negative interest rates including Berliner Volksbank, Ethikbank, Skatbank, Sparda-Bank Berlin, Sparkasse Harburg-Buxtehude, Volksbank Eisenberg, and Volksbank Fürstenfeldbruck. Berliner Volksbank, one of the largest German cooperative banks, started charging -0.5% on accounts with at least 100,000 euros on Oct. 1, as news.Bitcoin.com previously reported.

Following the move by the ECB to lower the key interest rate to -0.5% in September, Skatbank announced its negative interest rate policy, emphasizing:

We can no longer economically accept responsibility for maintaining the ECB negative interest rate in full. So far, negative interest rates were only incurred for large-scale depositors. As a result of its actions, the ECB leaves us no other choice than to further restrict our deposit business.

Another German price comparison website, Biallo, claims to have found more than 150 German financial institutions that are charging negative interest rates. Founder Horst Biallo wrote, "A biallo.de survey of just over 1,300 banks and savings banks shows that a good 150 financial institutions are now charging negative interest, 52 of which are private sector institutions." However, his list is not publicly available.

First Bank to Charge Small Savers Negative Rate
Among the 21 banks on Verivox's list is Volksbank Fürstenfeldbruck, a cooperative bank located west of Munich. The bank has recently been in the news for being the first German bank to pass on the cost of negative interest rates to even small savers.

The bank explained that it will collect a custody fee of -0.5% on instant access savings accounts, the Financial Times detailed. "New clients who also do other business with the bank, such as real estate financing or pension planning, will be exempt from the charges." The bank's website shows that accounts opened on Oct. 1 or later with deposits of 0.01 euro or more will be charged the fee. Inundated with inquiries about its new policy following media reports, the bank put up an explanation on its website, emphasizing that only new clients are affected. Verivox CEO Oliver Maier was quoted by the Financial Times on Tuesday as saying:

Negative interest rates have now reached the average saver.
What do you think of a growing number of German banks passing on the burden of negative interest rates to their customers? Let us know in the comments section below.

Sunday, November 17, 2019

Bitcoin Cash Community Funds Eatbch Trip to Ghana

 

This week members of the Bitcoin Cash (BCH) community donated funds to Eatbch South Sudan volunteer Thiong Deng so he could spread the word about the benefits of BCH at the Young African Leaders Summit. According to Deng, his journey to Uganda and Ghana has been fully funded which includes flight, hotel, visa costs, and a ticket to the event.

Eatbch South Sudan Volunteer Heads to the Young African Leaders Summit
Eatbch is easily recognized as the Bitcoin Cash community's most favorite charity because the nonprofit organization has been using BCH to help people throughout Venezuela and South Sudan. People can follow Eatbch on Twitter and see how the "peer-to-peer electronic cash-to-food system" feeds families and children in need regularly. Just recently, the nonprofit published a new website called eatbch.org that shows the tremendous work being done in South Sudan and Venezuela. Moreover, the website's visitors can donate bitcoin cash directly to the effort so people can help others experiencing economic hardships and difficult times.

Last September, news.Bitcoin.com reported on Eatbch South Sudan leader Emmanuel Lobijo, who was invited to attend the UN Secretary-General's Climate Action Summit. Lobijo joined Greta Thunberg and many other activists at the UN's event in New York. The Eatbch South Sudan leader explained how BCH can "bridge access to the world" and how the charitable organization is using bitcoin cash to fight water wars, drought, and famine in the African country.

This week members of the BCH community funded Eatbch South Sudan volunteer Thiong Micheal Deng's trip so he could attend the Young African Leaders Summit in Ghana. On November 13 and 14, BCH proponents on Twitter and Reddit asked the community to help fund Deng's trip. "Can we get Thiong, an Eatbch South Sudan representative to the Young African Leaders Summit? He still needs $800 dollars of funding," one Reddit post asked. Deng disclosed all the anticipated expenses for the trip to the Young African Leaders Summit and thanked the community for the "generous donations" but he still had $835 left to raise.

BCH Community Funds Travel Expenses to Ghana
On Twitter, software engineer Josh Ellithorpe (who designed the eatbch.org website) also asked BCH supporters to help fund Deng's travels. "This is the last day to get Thiong (an Eatbch South Sudan representative) to the Young African Leaders Summit," Ellithorpe tweeted. "Let's support him in spreading the word about Bitcoin Cash and the excellent work of Eatbch."

After a few BCH proponents made requests to the community, Deng managed to get the funds needed to embark on the trip. "Thanks, Bitcoin cash community," Deng said. "[You] have set up my journey to Uganda — 18-hour bus drive — then flight to Ghana for the conference. BCH you made it happen — thanks for the love." The BCH community members who helped fund the trip and the work being done by Eatbch at large demonstrates how passionate BCH proponents are about peer-to-peer cash. The work Eatbch does each and every day showcases how decentralized, borderless cryptocurrencies can truly revolutionize the global economy.

Saturday, November 16, 2019

Royal Bank of Canada Patents Point to Crypto Exchange Launch

 


The largest bank in Canada by market capitalization, Royal Bank of Canada (RBC), is reportedly opening a cryptocurrency exchange. Patents have been discovered that reveal some of the technology the RBC may implement, which could be used to bring digital currency trading to the bank's 16 million clients.

The Royal Bank of Canada May Launch a Crypto Exchange
A report stemming from the publication The Logic claims that the RBC is currently exploring the construction of a digital currency trading platform. Columnist Zane Schwartz wrote on November 11 that the bank will give customers the ability to invest and trade cryptocurrencies like BTC and ETH. The report reveals RBC is interested in creating funds with a basket of digital currencies as well. "The bank is also looking into letting customers open bank accounts containing cryptocurrency," Schwartz wrote. If the crypto trading platform comes to fruition then the Canadian bank will be the first financial institution in the country to offer such services.

At the last World Economic Forum in Davos, the Royal Bank of Canada's CEO, David McKay, told the public that the financial institution aims to leverage distributed ledger technology. "We're experimenting with taking an asset and breaking it into smaller pieces and registering that in a decentralised register called blockchain. You can take an asset or even a company and create a unit on a decentralised blockchain and then sell that into the marketplace," McKay said during a panel discussion.

Speaking with Schwartz, RBC spokesperson Jean Francois Thibault explained that the Canadian financial institution "like many other organizations, files patent applications to ensure proprietary ideas and concepts are protected." Thibault would not confirm to Schwartz whether or not the RBC would be constructing a new trading platform for cryptocurrencies.

Royal Bank of Canada Patents Point to Crypto Exchange Launch
A while back, RBC's wealth management service published a report outlining the benefits and risks tethered to digital currencies.
As early as 2015, the RBC expressed interest in blockchain and McKay explained that the technology was a "quantum innovation." "It is a brand-new technology, and what do we really know about it? How cyber-secure is it? We are going to learn a lot more about it," McKay told the publication American Banker. "Given what is at stake, it is not something you can rush to market with and fix as you go. You want it to work."

Royal Bank of Canada Patents Point to Crypto Exchange Launch
Royal Bank of Canada patent CA 3038757: A system and method for handling crypto-asset transactions.
Alongside this, RBC's wealth management arm also published a report called "Bitcoin and beyond: Five things to know about cryptocurrency." The RBC study notes there are plenty of risks associated with decentralized blockchain assets, but in the long run "the possibilities of cryptocurrencies are undeniable."

International Law Enforcement Conference Addresses Crypto and the ‘Criminal Economy’

 

The 2019 National Proceeds of Crime Conference (NPOCC) held in Brisbane, Australia from November 13-15 addressed "Globalisation and Digitisation of the Criminal Economy," and featured 200+ delegates hearing from representatives of organizations such as the Australian Federal Police, Singapore and New Zealand police, United States Department of Justice, and the Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission. The conference set out to address how to better seize criminal profits and face challenges to law enforcement presented by the darknet and cryptocurrencies like bitcoin.

Addressing Crypto Crime
Justine Gough, Acting Assistant Commissioner for the Australian Federal Police (AFP), stated that "Advances in technology, like cryptocurrency and encrypted communications have changed the way criminals acquire and hide their assets" and that "Seizing and removing the profits of crime is one of the most effective capabilities we have in impacting organised criminal networks."

The international conference, which aimed to address such topics as "the Darknet, trends in money laundering, collaboration in investigations; evidence collection in an age of cloud-based data and the monetisation of cybercrime" focused on how relevant organizations respond to crime in an age where cryptography and digital assets like bitcoin have enabled greater efficiency in skirting law enforcement. The push echoes recent sentiment from the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) whose director Christopher Wray claimed problems presented by such technologies are getting "bigger and bigger."

Money Laundering and the Darknet
Since the takedown of infamous darknet marketplace Silk Road in 2013, bitcoin and crypto have been in the mainstream media spotlight, and in the sights of law enforcement and financial regulators worldwide when it comes to money laundering and illegal activities. U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin has claimed that bitcoin and crypto are a "risk to the financial system" while pushing back against the idea that the world reserve U.S. dollar is used comparably. "I don't think it's been successfully done with cash. I'll push back on that. We're going to make sure that bitcoin doesn't become the equivalent of Swiss-numbered bank accounts," Mnuchin stated in July.

AFP Acting Assistant Commissioner Gough says of the NPOCC:

We are honoured to have representatives from law enforcement, government departments and private enterprise … share their insights and to collaborate on how we respond to emerging technologies like cryptocurrency.

The response has already been swift and formidable. From numerous arrests of those transacting and trading in crypto — both criminal and non-criminal elements alike — to powerful tax agencies like the IRS issuing thousands of warning letters to potential crypto non-filers and money launderers, it's clear law enforcement worldwide means business. The question of what kind of similar enterprise in trafficking, money laundering and tax evasion is being done with the almighty USD remains noticeably off the table, however.

Worldwide Enforcement Efforts
It will be interesting to hear the conclusions of this week's Brisbane conference, and to see what developments proceed from the talks on monetization of cybercrime via crypto. Already global policymakers and joint enforcement initiatives such as the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) and the Joint Chiefs of Global Tax Enforcement (J5) are working to broaden the intelligence and enforcement dragnet for targeting unauthorized and permissionless financial activity worldwide. As the NPOCC's problematic "Digitisation of the Criminal Economy" continues, the crypto space can expect even more scrutiny and heightened KYC/AML compliance measures in 2020.

Sunday, October 20, 2019

How to Trade Crypto in Person Safely

 

With mainstream exchanges becoming progressively cumbersome due to privacy invasive policy and regulation, some crypto traders are switching to more private, face-to-face trading. While this route isn't for everyone, and comes with unique risks, it does offer a very real solution to many of the problems plaguing mainstream exchanges currently. The goal of this breakdown is to provide a few best practices for safety and success when trading crypto in person.

Why Face to Face?
For anyone that's ever had their money frozen on an exchange, this question is a no-brainer. Since most exchange wallets are custodial, meaning the service itself holds and manages user funds centrally, one bug in the code, hack, or audit from a governmental regulatory agency could mean that you and your money are parted indefinitely. Stomach sinkers of this nature have occurred often enough that many, understandably, don't want to run these risks anymore. Others are concerned about privacy and the security of their personal data and information. Trading in person via a non-custodial platform or otherwise lets traders hold funds until the very last second, and guarantees more control. Still, there are important things to be mindful of in order to trade safely and successfully.

Best Practices
To avoid getting scammed, set up, or potentially endangered, there are some time-tested best practices for trading face to face. The overarching one is simple, though: just use common sense.

Choose a trustworthy platform / trader
Maybe you know someone in your community who also uses cryptocurrencies. Perhaps a friend of a friend, or an acquaintance interested in getting into crypto, but they don't know how. Online, reliable peer-to-peer platforms such as that currently offered at local.bitcoin.com are great places to start. Platforms that offer blind escrow, and end-to-end chat encryption are the safest bets. Whatever one's approach, testing first and vetting for reliability is critical.

Using shoddy, unproven platforms or trading with strangers who've no reputation for being honest probably won't end well. There are scammers as well as government agents on some p2p networks, and in real life, more than happy to ensnare even innocent, legal users of crypto for their own benefit.

Well-managed platforms will have a reputation system in place so users can verify which traders have completed the most trades successfully, and feedback features for rating their quality of service. Be sure to work out all the specifics of the trading process and procedure in clear detail on an encrypted chat application prior to meeting for the trade.

Meet in an open, highly visible public space
After working out the specifics of your deal, and providing only necessary information to the contact, meet in an open, highly visible space that is frequented by people but also provides enough serenity to conduct business. A well-lit coffee shop or popular meeting spot in view of the public can be a great place to conduct crypto trades. Trust your gut in meeting someone for the first time, and if anything "feels off," don't hesitate to politely back out.

A great way to get scammed face to face is to send your bitcoins to the guy across the table and watch him run off without paying you. In this situation you could give chase (risky), yell, flail about, or call the cops, but you're more than likely just SOL. Be sure the other person lets you see the money, gift cards, etc., first, before sending any coins.

Most respectable traders will place money on the table discreetly (in an envelope or book) so that it is within reach of both parties, and sudden moves to bolt are not likely to succeed. Once the tx has enough confirmations for the buyer's liking, they should slide the money over and invite the other party to count it. If you are the one buying crypto be sure to make the seller feel at ease by setting up the trade similarly. Crypto-to-crypto deals require a bit more creativity perhaps, but having both devices in reach and openly in view can help.

Horse Sense Is Number One
There are limitless options for working out trustworthy trade arrangements, including step-by-step, fractional trades to test the waters on first meeting, PGP contracts making it difficult for a party to lie about the agreement after the fact, and verification via other contacts of a trader's reputation. However, as mentioned earlier, the main thing is to trust your reason, and gut instinct. If some aspect of a crypto trade arrangement feels spooky or inconsistent, it's more than okay to kick the deal and get out. More often than not, however, in person trades are fun, friendly experiences that can be a good way to get out of the typically isolated, smugly self-referential hell that is crypto Twitter, catching a breath of fresh air while stacking sats and building the bitcoin economy.

Sunday, October 13, 2019

Bitcoin Poised For Another Breakout as It Clings to Support, Which Way Next?

 

Bitcoin has spent the past two weeks consolidating just below the 200 day moving average. So far it has managed to cling to support above $8,000 but a big move could be coming soon so which way will it go next?

Bitcoin Trading Range Tightens
Another day has seen Bitcoin bounce between $8,300 and $8,400 as the range bound channel begins to tighten up. According to Tradingview.com BTC is currently within this range at $8,340 since the big dump on Friday.

RSI is right on 50 on the four hour chart but below it on the daily. That death cross of the 50 day MA and 200 day MA is looming ever closer and could occur in about a week, especially if the breakout is to the low side.

Trader 'CryptoHamster' has observed the sideways channel on the 50% Fibonacci retracement level which is also a signal of a bigger move approaching.

Stating that Bitcoin will 'either go up or down' is pretty obvious but where will it stop is more interesting. On the high side the 23.6% Fibo shows resistance at just below $8,600 while a drop lower to the 61.8% line takes it back to $8,200.

Below that is further support at $8k then $7.8k. At the moment BTC has corrected 40 percent from the 2019 high and is holding ground. Market dominance has failed to regain 70 percent and is currently just below it according to Tradingview.com.

Elsewhere on Crypto Markets
The majority of the altcoins are showing red this Sunday though losses are minor as they also follow big brother's consolidation. Ethereum has weakened again in a fall back towards $180. ETH is unlikely to decouple from BTC until major network upgrades in Istanbul and early Serenity phases are rolled out in a few months' time.

Ripple's XRP has remained flat for the past few days but it has managed to hold on to previous gains keeping the token around $0.275. Bitcoin Cash has weakened again allowing Tether to retake fourth spot with a larger market cap and Litecoin has shown very little movement from its $55 price level.

Today's top movers on altcoin markets are Binance Coin adding 4 percent to close in on $18, and BSV getting a 3.5 percent lift as it approaches $90. There are no coins in the top one hundred gaining double digits as Sunday trading remains lethargic.

Total crypto market capitalization hasn't moved much this weekend and remains around $225 billion. Daily volume, according to coinmarketcap.com, has declined below $50 billion but markets are marginally higher than this time last weekend.

Monday, October 7, 2019

Is PayPal Backing Out Of Libra Deal?

 

The controversial essence of what is Facebook's Libra cryptocurrency has just been hit significantly according to recently surfaced news.

A spokesperson for the payment giant Paypal spoke to the Wall Street Journal on Friday afternoon and said that the firm has decided to "forgo further particpiation" on the project. However, despite this, they added that the payment network will continue to support the goal of Libra which is to 'democratize finance'. This would mean that is will keep it options open with Facebook for the future.

The PayPal representative said:
"We remain supportive of Libra's aspirations and look forward to continued dialogue on ways to work together in the future. Facebook has been a longstanding and valued strategic partner to PayPal, and we will continue to partner with and support Facebook in various capacities."

This is an announcement that came shortly after sources to the Financial Times said that PayPal spokespersons didn't make an appearance at the Washington-based Libra conference. Sources went onto say that out of the 28 corporate backers of the upcoming stablecoin, PayPal was the only one who didn't turn up to the meeting. What this was down to is unknown, however, it's important to keep an open mind and not presume the worst.

It's also worth noting that by not turning up to support the Libra Association, PayPal hasn't actually betrayed any formal contracts or agreements. Gabrielle Rabinovitch, the Vice President of investor relations at PayPal, said in August that the firm's participation in the crypto venture was one backed by a "non-binding" contract.

Apple
We recently got the opinion of Apple's Tim Cook and what he thinks of cryptocurrency and Libra. However, when being asked whether Apple is planning to create a currency, Cook said:
"No. I deeply believe that money must remain in the hands of states. I am not comfortable with the idea that a private group creates a competing currency. A private company does not have to seek to gain power in this way. Money, like Defense, must remain in the hands of States, it is at the heart of their mission. We elect our representatives to assume government responsibilities. Companies are not elected, they do not have to go on this ground."

Sunday, September 29, 2019

Nigerian crypto wallet Satowallet disappears with users’ funds

 


A Nigerian cryptocurrency wallet is alleged to have pulled off an exit scam, disappearing with over $1 million in users' funds. The users of Satowallet first started reporting withdrawal hitches in April, which led many to question the company's legitimacy. However, the management reassured the users, blaming its technical issues on its web hosting services provider.

Satowallet was founded in 2017 and claims to be based in Dubai, according to a report by Finance Magnates. Its parent firm Blockchain Tech Hub is based in Nigeria's capital, Abuja. The wallet supports over 60 cryptocurrencies.

The report reveals that users begun experiencing issues with their withdrawals in April. The company blamed the issues on technical hitches. However, during the time that the users were unable to access their funds, Satowallet claimed that several Telegram scammers exploited the upgrade period and stole some of the funds that the company held for its users.

In a statement afterwards, Satowallet assured its users that it had fixed the vulnerability. However, almost immediately after, it installed tough KYC measures which would take weeks to be verified. This further delayed the withdrawals for the users.

In August, the wallet became totally inaccessible for its users. The CEO said at the time that all its servers were down. He blamed the outage on OVH.ie, the wallet's data center provider which had hosted the servers for the previous two years. The website and app were restored after a few days. However, the users' coins got lost in the process.

Satowallet accused OVH of fraud and stealing the company's wallet servers. Regardless of where the blame lies, the users' funds are gone.

Despite the major steps the crypto industry has taken to identify and rid itself of exit scams, they are still occurring. A report by cybersecurity firm CipherTrace in August labeled 2019 as the year of exit scams. The report revealed that crypto investors have already lost $3.1 billion to exit scams this year. However, the lion's share of this amount, $2.9 billion was lost when South Korean crypto exchange PlusToken vanished with customers' funds.


Sunday, September 22, 2019

Crypto exchange rejects Brazil court deadline to resolve withdrawals

 


Atlas Quantum, a Brazilian cryptocurrency exchange that has been the subject of much controversy, has defied a court deadline to resolve withdrawal issues. In a blog post, the company stated that it was working to solve withdrawal hitches, but that it didn't have a deadline to do so. This comes after a Brazilian court froze the exchange's accounts and gave it 48 hours to resolve the outstanding accounts.

A federal court in Brazil ruled that Atlas Quantum's activities constituted practices associated with financial pyramid schemes on September 16. This was after one of the users took to court accusing the exchange of denying him access to his crypto stash. The user claimed the exchange barred him from withdrawing his 6 BTC, with Atlas blaming the mishap on Know-Your-Customer issues with its accounts on other exchanges.

In a separate ruling, a Sao Paulo court ruled that Atlas had 48 hours to settle all the outstanding withdrawal requests from its clients or risk severe penalties.

The company promptly responded to the charges stating, "Atlas Quantum reports that when notified, it will manifest itself in the case file. On the issue of withdrawals, the company adds that it is working to resolve it as soon as possible."

Three days after the ruling, the exchange is yet to settle withdrawal requests, but claims to be working on the issue. In its Q&A-structured statement, the exchange revealed, "We are in the process of implementing the solutions required by the exchanges, and we do not have a deadline to reestablish withdrawal processing. We emphasize that our team is 100% focused so that normality is restored as soon as possible."

The exchange also responded to other major concerns, including claims that it was a pyramid scheme. To this, the company stated:

We don't have any referral programs, referrals or anything featuring multi-level marketing, very common in financial fraud schemes. In this sense, we never guarantee fixed returns, since our main product is automated high frequency arbitrage. We have always made it clear that by the nature of our product and the market, income is variable and we may even have days with negative profitability, although we work hard not to.

The statement also included a video that supposedly proved the exchange was in possession of the assets it reported to have. In the video, Atlas showed the purported balances in its Poloniex, Gate.io and HitBTC accounts. Combined, the exchange alleges to have 15,000 BTC and over $45 million in Tether. However, some market experts have disputed the report, claiming the exchange is overstating its position.

Sunday, September 15, 2019

Browser Extensions Can Help Scammers Steal Your Bitcoin: Casa CE

 


Browser extensions can help scammers steal your crypto Casa CEO Jeremy Welch warned the audience at the Baltic Honeybadger conference in Riga this weekend.
"Browser extensions impose major risks, and these risks haven't been discussed until this point," Welch said.

Extensions can gather a wealth of data, which can be leaked, stolen, and used by scammers. One example is browser history, which can expose users' online habits, including crypto-related site visits.
"Make sure you don't expose your bitcoin addresses anywhere," Welch warned.

Another thing to keep in mind is that some extensions capture users' KYC information and can leak it to scammers. The only major multisig system that requires KYC at the moment is the one supplied by Unchained Capital, Welch said. He warns against commonly-used consumer software that gathers identity data.

As an example, Welch demonstrated how an extension providing wallpapers with inspiring quotes or other content was actually stealing data as you filled in KYC forms. The malware stole graphical data, like a photo of your driver's license, which is captured as a code and then easily decoded, providing an actual picture of your ID document to hackers.

Quiet data thefts
All this is happening on the background, without the user noticing.
"You got a nice background here and you don't realize that your browser is actually dumping data," Welch said.

The same wallpaper extension can alter a receiving address when you're trying to send your crypto to somebody else (or to yourself), sending it to a scammer's wallet instead. The ubiquity and popularity of browser extensions makes the situation quite dangerous, Welch noted:
"It's terrifying, right? We all are using browser extensions all the time."

Even if a user is very careful and selective in what they're using, the software can be upgraded and get new, unsafe features without a consumer noticing, Welch added.

Welch noted that many well-known applications request enough permissions to gather personal data, including password managers, text editing app Grammarly, Joule extension for in-browser Lighting transactions, Casa's own Sats extension and the Lolli bitcoin-earning extension.

The solution? There is no easy one, Welch says. Developers can only keep building better tools that will make users' experience safer and better.
"We all need to be discussing this issues more, because we're not even in the phase yet when real attacks will be taking place."

Welch added that Casa is planning to publish more security research soon and encouraged bitcoin developers and entrepreneurs to approach the company and share their concerns and ideas on how to address security issues.

Monday, September 9, 2019

Crypto Banking Expands With Positive Interest Rates and New Services

 



Banking, in the traditional sense of the term, has become a financial burden for account holders in regions where the era of subzero interest rates has already set in. European nations like Sweden, Denmark, Switzerland, and Eurozone countries have been in negative territory for some time, and banks there have started passing the burden to corporate and private clients. However, businesses and savers don't have to put up with losing money as the expanding banking services in the crypto space come with much better conditions, including positive interest rates.

Bank Accounts With Bitcoin Wallets in 31 EEA Countries
With the number of cryptocurrency users growing constantly, the need for dedicated digital asset banking naturally increases too. Currently, companies specializing in this niche are actually offering better terms to their customers than traditional financial institutions are able to provide within the fiat system. Of course, it remains to be seen if they will maintain the competitive edge once demand for their services expands significantly.

Germany, the leading EU economy, is now witnessing a backlash against low and negative interest rates. Politicians from different factions have expressed support for an initiative to outlaw punitive interest on deposits of up to €100,000. With negative rates imposed on them by the European Central Bank, ordinary German savers feel like they are once again paying the bill for the rescue of the common currency, the euro. And the ECB is preparing for a new rate cut to an all-time low of -0.50% this month.

Cryptocurrencies are an alternative to fiat money in many respects and they are likely to attract more attention as clouds continue to gather over the world economy a decade after the global financial crisis and the birth of Bitcoin. And while some have warned crypto companies probably shouldn't try to become the banks of a new financial era, there are also reasonable arguments that in many cases they can actually provide better services based on the strengths of decentralized digital currencies.

Berlin-headquartered Bitwala has established itself as a crypto banking and payment provider in Europe. Towards the end of last year, the company announced it's offering customers bank accounts with Ibans through a partnership with Solarisbank, a licensed financial institution operating under the oversight of Bafin, the Federal Financial Supervisory Authority of Germany. Deposits up to €100,000 will be protected by the German deposit guarantee scheme.

Bitwala recently launched a bitcoin banking app for iOS and Android. The company explained that residents of the European Economic Area, all EU countries plus Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway, can open a German bank account that comes with an integrated BTC wallet and start trading on their smartphones. The onboarding process is now fully integrated into the mobile application and opening a new account takes only a few minutes. The platform uses video identification and EEA residents are required to provide a valid national ID as well as a proof of address. In a statement issued in August, Bitwala Chief Technical Officer Benjamin Jones noted:

Once you have an account, you can seamlessly integrate your daily banking activities – whether in bitcoin or euro – into your everyday life.

Bitwala users can buy and sell cryptocurrency directly from their bank account with a low 1% fee charged per trade. The multi-signature wallet also allows them to transfer bitcoin on a peer-to-peer basis with friends and family. Transactions can be authorized by using biometrics. The company assures customers that in order to protect their coins in the Bitwala wallet, the private keys will remain in their hands.

Zeux is another fintech company that provides banking solutions for both digital and traditional currencies. It recently launched its new Zeux app for Android and iOS devices and introduced bitcoin cash into its ecosystem. The cryptocurrency is now listed on its mobile app which allows crypto users to pay with BCH via Apple Pay and Samsung Pay. The listing will help bring cryptocurrency into everyday life, Zeux explained in an announcement published on Medium.

The banking platform noted that Bitcoin Cash provides peer-to-peer electronic cash transfer at low fees and high security, thereby fulfilling the original promise of Bitcoin.

Earn up to 10% Interest on Your Bitcoin Savings
With the spread of decentralized digital assets and the problems fiat currencies are facing right now, often due to failed central bank policies, demand for traditional-style banking services in the crypto space will continue to grow. There's a void to be filled and platforms such as Cred are doing exactly that.

Similar to a bank, Cred uses the pledged assets to lend to various borrowers including retail investors and money managers. That's on a fully collateralized and guaranteed basis as the platform works with trusted collateral agents and leading custody partners including Bitgo, Bittrex Enterprise and Ledger. The aim is to ensure the safety and security of the digital assets deposited by its customers.

Norwegian Bank Invests in Crypto Exchange
Traditional financial institutions have been tempted to get involved in the crypto space and provide services related to digital assets. Such is the case with Sparebanken Øst, a Norwegian savings bank, which recently announced it had bought a 16.3% stake in the Norwegian Block Exchange (NBX) for 15 million Norwegian krone (approx. $1.67 million). The new trading platform is expected to start operations this month.

Admitting the high risk of the investment, Sparebanken Øst nevertheless noted in a press release its belief that "the ownership position in NBX is sound, based on the bank's solidity and risk profile, and is responsible in relation to the bank's needs and desire to take a leading role in technological developments in the industry." The crypto exchange itself plans to also provide payment services to its customers. NBX will be fully compliant with Norwegian regulations applicable to its financial activities.

Tuesday, September 3, 2019

Indian Exchanges Innovate as Calls for Positive Crypto Regulation Escalate

 


Indian crypto exchanges are innovating, launching new products and improving services for their users, despite the country's regulatory uncertainty and unresolved banking restrictions. Meanwhile, the Indian crypto community continues its efforts to convince the government that the draft bill to ban cryptocurrencies is flawed, calling for positive regulation instead.

Better Trading Environment
Undeterred by regulatory uncertainty and an onerous banking ban, five crypto exchanges in India revealed their new projects last week. Crypto exchange Coindcx has shared with news.Bitcoin.com that it has partnered with Australia-based crypto trading platform Koinfox. CEO Sumit Gupta explained that the collaboration gives Koinfox's users access to his exchange's liquidity aggregated from major global exchanges. Meanwhile, users of his exchange will have access to Koinfox's advanced trading tools, including algorithmic trading and risk management strategies. The integration will be live by mid-September, he confirmed.

Besides an exchange service and a P2P platform, Coindcx also offers margin trading in over 200 markets as well as crypto lending. The lending program currently supports nine cryptocurrencies: BTC, USDT, BNB, XRP, ETH, TUSD, TRX, BTT, and LTC. Users can earn monthly interest of up to 1.5% depending on the coins lent. Further, they will soon be able to trade in crypto derivatives, Gupta revealed.

Two other cryptocurrency exchanges, Bitbns and Okex, also announced their partnership last week to better serve the Indian market, but have not unveiled any specific details of the collaboration. Meanwhile, cryptocurrency exchanges in India have been suffocating from the banking restrictions imposed by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI). The central bank issued a circular in April last year, banning regulated financial institutions from providing services to crypto businesses. The ban went into effect 90 days later. It has been extensively challenged in the supreme court, which is scheduled to revisit the case on Sept. 25.

Smart Token Fund
Another Indian cryptocurrency exchange is launching a new product. Wazirx unveiled last week its Smart Token Fund (STF) program, which it described as "a simplified community-driven initiative where cryptocurrency enthusiasts can find smart traders, and let them grow their cryptocurrency portfolio." The exchange claims to already have "an existing community of pro traders who can trade with the funds of new entrants and in return, earn a certain percentage of the profits they make," elaborating:

STF's aim is to democratise cryptocurrency trading expertise for everyone. You can choose the right STF trader for yourself based on the tokens they trade, their trading history, performance, and more.

Wazirx CEO Nischal Shetty shared that many users on his exchange do not understand how to trade cryptocurrencies and have asked him for help. He emphasized that the biggest problem in crypto for new entrants is not knowing which tokens to invest in. "There's an exceptionally large number of people out there who don't have time to trade, don't know which token to trade or how to trade. These barriers are holding them back from investing in cryptos, and in turn preventing them from participating in this amazing revolution," he opined.

The STF program enables traders "to trade and manage multiple people's portfolio — all on a single interface," and keep a percentage of the profits they make for investors, the CEO explained. Investors can choose to invest with the traders based on factors such as their performance, the tokens they trade, or their trading history. They can enter and exit any time with no locked-in period. The exchange is currently giving early access to "selective expert traders."

How Wealthy Indians Plan to Invest in Crypto
The Indian government is currently deliberating on a draft bill to ban cryptocurrencies, drawn up by an interministerial committee (IMC) headed by former Secretary of the Department of Economic Affairs Subhash Chandra Garg, who was subsequently reassigned to the Power Ministry. The government has indicated to the supreme court that this bill might be introduced in the next parliament session.

Despite the country's uncertain policies on crypto assets, some wealthy Indians are planning to invest in cryptocurrencies, according to the first "Hurun Indian Luxury Consumer Survey 2019." Released Friday by The Hurun Research Institute, the survey reveals "the changes and preferences of lifestyle, consumption habits and brand cognition of high-net-worth individuals in India," the institute described. Respondents include 831 richest Indians on the Hurun India Rich List.

According to the results, 9.6% of respondents said that their investment in cryptocurrency would increase over the next three years. However, nearly half of the survey participants said they did not know much about cryptocurrency. Among those who did, 29.15% said they preferred bitcoin, 8.74% preferred ethereum, 6.8% preferred ripple, and 5.83% preferred other coins.

Calls for Positive Regulation Escalate
Since the IMC report and draft bill were made public on July 22, the Indian crypto community has been trying to convince the government to reexamine the draft bill. Many believe that the bill is flawed in many areas, from the definition of cryptocurrency to the ban recommendations. The community has gained support from a number of leading industry groups, such as The National Association of Software and Services Companies (Nasscom) and the Internet & Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) which also believe that banning is not the solution.

The "India Wants Crypto" campaign, which calls on the government to introduce positive crypto regulation, has entered its 306th day and has recently crossed its milestone of more than 50,000 tweets and retweets.

"The entire 5 million Indian crypto youth want to participate in achieving [the] target of growing Indian economy to $5 trillion," Shetty tweeted to his country's prime minister and finance minister. His persistence is starting to pay off, as at least one parliament member, Rajeev Chandrasekhar, is willing to hear more. The Wazirx executive further explained that many in the crypto sector are rapidly innovating, but they lag behind other countries due to regulatory uncertainty and banking restrictions. He believes that embracing crypto will lead to more jobs and investments, among other benefits, which he recently shared with us.

Bitcoin.com's Premier Cryptocurrency Exchange Is Now Live

 


Bitcoin.com launched their premier trading platform exchange.Bitcoin.com and registered users can access it right now. Since we announced pre-registration last month, over 10,000 accounts have signed up with our exchange and the platform is ready to provide a world-class trading experience for crypto newcomers and veterans alike.

Trade Your Favorite Cryptos Today With Bitcoin.com's New Exchange
Exchange.Bitcoin.com is live and we're thrilled to launch a trading engine that provides fast and secure exchange in this competitive crypto environment. On the two-year anniversary of the Bitcoin Cash fork, we announced a pre-registration period so people could get a head start and participate in our rewards contest. Since then, we've registered over 10,000 new accounts and our exchange is ready to provide deep liquidity for the most popular digital assets today. Moreover, new accounts will get paid to trade by benefiting from negative 0.3% trading fees for the next three months. Upon logging in, you will quickly notice that exchange.Bitcoin.com was designed by traders for traders, with a user interface and design that brings you the very best in optimized crypto trading.

"When you want to trade cryptocurrency, you look for an exchange which is trustworthy and which also offers you a wide range of digital assets", Bitcoin.com's CEO Stefan Rust commented on the new exchange. "Bitcoin.com has been in the crypto space since the beginning and our new exchange, which supports many different coins and soon SLP tokens, will complement our existing trusted products in making money work for everyone."

Bitcoin.com's exchange will host a slew of trading pairs including popular cryptocurrencies like litecoin (LTC), ripple (XRP), tron (TRX), zcash (ZEC), stellar (XLM), Dash (DASH) and Eos (EOS). Exchange.Bitcoin.com will have markets denominated in base currencies like bitcoin cash (BCH), ethereum (ETH), bitcoin core (BTC), and tether (USDT).

The exchange will furnish professional charts with technical indicators, optional timeframes, and order books in real-time so traders can visualize the market's depth. Furthermore, in the near future, Bitcoin.com developers will integrate Simple Ledger Protocol (SLP) token support. This means you will be able to swap some of the most popular and valuable SLP tokens out there today.

Trading Fee Rewards and a Professional-Grade Trading Engine
To mark the launch of our new exchange, you can earn rewards through negative 0.3% trading fees. With exchange.Bitcoin.com, registered users will score more bonuses the more they trade. Negative 0.3% trading fees work in the following manner:

You'll earn negative fees up to $1,000,000 of cumulative trades for the first three months.
So, if your total cumulative trades are $1,000,000, the typical trading fees would be $2,000 and you'd earn $5,000 in rewards.
You'll receive these rewards at the end of the three months. To find out more, please read the full promotional details in the terms and conditions.
Bitcoin.com's Premier Cryptocurrency Exchange Is Now Live

If you haven't signed up for our trading platform, the process is quick and easy. Simply register with exchange.Bitcoin.com and you'll be able to instantly trade, deposit, and withdraw your favorite digital assets. Bitcoin.com's user interface is designed for ease of use combined with a professional-grade trading platform designed to offer seamless swaps in a secure environment. Exchange.Bitcoin.com's matching engine is faster than lightning and traders can execute trades smoothly with cryptocurrencies that have deep liquidity. Besides pleasing veteran traders, our new exchange will be one of the easiest ways for newcomers to obtain cryptocurrencies. As a trading platform that provides a superior user experience, exchange.Bitcoin.com will always be reliable and backed by our trusted brand.

"At Bitcoin.com we have a mission to bring financial freedom to the world and we're excited to offer industry-leading rewards on an exchange you can trust to help propel the crypto space forward," Danish Chaudhry, Managing Director of Bitcoin.com Exchange stated during the announcement.

A Better Trading Experience
Our web portal has been offering dependable crypto resources, tools, and services for years and exchange.Bitcoin.com's principled approach to security will help you trade with confidence. Accounts will be guarded with IP whitelisting, two-factor authentication (2FA), and institutional-grade encryption. You will always be notified if there are any login attempts using your account. These safeguards make exchange.Bitcoin.com ideal for both small and large traders. At Bitcoin.com, we understand the need for high-speed order execution in the fast-paced crypto marker, and our exchange has been configured accordingly.

We're excited to offer a world-class cryptocurrency exchange that provides an array of tools across all of exchange.Bitcoin.com's trading pairs. Right now the trading platform is live, and if you haven't signed up already, you can do so today and start trading cryptos immediately. With our rewards program, deep volume, and crisp user interface, we believe exchange.Bitcoin.com delivers a better trading experience and we think you'll agree.

Monday, August 26, 2019

Bitcoin Cash Innovation Accelerates With Cashscript High-Level Language

 


Software developers Rosco Kalis and Gabriel Cardona have been steadily working on Cashscript, a high-level programming language for Bitcoin Cash. When the language is tied to certain opcodes, specific schemes can be built that allow for autonomous and decision-based transactions. While testing Cashscript's capabilities, the two engineers recently deployed an oracle, forfeits, an onchain wager, and a recurring payments contract.

BCH Developers Are Innovating With Cashscript
Bitcoin Cash (BCH) development is in full swing and over the last six months the tempo has really started to pick up. Things like the Simple Ledger Protocol, Schnorr signatures, opcodes, Cashshuffle, the programming language Spedn, and token dividend payments have galvanized the network's versatility. Another project that's seeing steady development is Cashscript, a high-level language for BCH created by the software developer Rosco Kalis.

Since then, Kalis and other developers like Gabriel Cardona, the creator of Bitbox, have been eagerly showing the BCH community what Cashscript is capable of doing. "Cashscript is a paradigm shift in expressiveness for BCH contracts," Cardona explained this week while highlighting a bunch of experiments. For instance, Cardona showed the BCH community on Twitter how the Mecenas contract was replicated in Cashscript. Mecenas was a contract developed by Karol Trzeszczkowski that allows for recurring BCH payments. After redesigning the covenant-based smart contract solution in Cashscript, the developer asserted that "Large contracts like this is where Cashscript really shines." On August 24, Cardona also tweeted that last year in Milan at the Satoshi's Vision Conference, BCH engineer Awemany revealed a solution to the zero-confirmation problem by using a concept called "Zero-Confirmation Forfeits." So the developer decided to replicate the zero-confirmation forfeit idea using the Cashscript language.

'BCH Supports Hodling Better Than BTC'
While showing the ported Cashscript examples on Twitter, Cardona also tipped his hat to developers who helped initiate these ideas like Tendo Pein, Karol Trzeszczkowski, Rosco Kalis, Emil Oldenburg, Chris Pacia, and Tobias Ruck. The next day on August 25, Cardona showed the public a wager contract from Emil Oldenburgs's onchain bet example from "Taking OP_Checkdatasig out for a test drive." The new wager contract was written in Cashscript, which executes an onchain bet between two parties and can only be settled by block height and price signed by an oracle. "Noncustodial financial services are about to change everything," Cardona exclaimed. In another example, Kalis and Cardona produced an oracle using Cashscript and OP_Checkdatasig. The contract forces holding onto the asset until a certain price target has been reached. The "Hodl-Vault" contract specifications state:

A minimum block is provided to ensure that oracle price entries from before this block are disregarded: When the BCH price was $1,000 in the past, an oracle entry with the old block number and price can not be used. Instead, a message with a block number and price from after the minBlock needs to be passed. This contract serves as a simple example of OP_Checkdatasig-based contracts.

After the contract was created, Spedn creator Tendo Pein tweeted: "BCH supports hodling better than BTC." "Anything BTC can do, BCH can do better," Cardona replied. On the Reddit forum r/btc, BCH supporters welcomed the innovation stemming from the Cashscript language. Cashscript can allow for many types of autonomous and decision-based transactions like oracles, zero-conf forfeits, digital good purchases via PGP signature, Pay to ID, cold wallet timeout, enforced multi-signature signing order, stablecoins, covenants, secure multi-party computation, blind escrows and spending constraints. "[It's] going to be exciting to see what people can come up with using these new features," one BCH supporter said after reading about the innovations Cashscript could prime in the future.

Oracles and Decision-Based Transactions Without the Need for a Custodian's Decision
One of the biggest conversations stemming from the r/btc post about Cashscript was the use of oracles. Many cryptocurrency enthusiasts and blockchain developers believe that the BCH blockchain could provide verifiable multi-sourced facts, so people can use a trustless oracle for better decisions. Oracles are neutral by design and can allow the BCH chain to verify enough valid data to prove something is true or false, which then would essentially trigger decision-based transactions based on the outcome.

Since ancient times, humans have used oracles to make hard decisions, execute bets and wagers, and provide validated reports. The opcode OP_Checkdatasig has brought the idea of blockchain oracle concepts using the BCH chain to the forefront. The opcode can check the validation of certain signatures, and return two different outcomes in an autonomous fashion. This means BCH-powered oracles can provide a definitive outcome for things like sporting events, election results, and prediction markets. But it would do so in a way that removes the need for a third party or custodian's decision.

Developers have already proven these types of decision-based transactions can work without changing the current BCH rule set. People have built onchain wagers, oracles, digital currency inheritance schemes and even a game of onchain chess. It's still very early, but Cashscript is maturing fast and BCH developers can utilize the language right now to execute these types of decision-based transactions into their workflow. As Cardona highlighted earlier this week, noncustodial financial services will decimate the current way we deal with money. Innovations like OP_Checkdatasig, Cashscript, Spedn, and Schnorr help to realize this goal.

Thai SEC warns against yet another crypto investment scam

 


The Thai Securities and Exchanges Commission has warned the public against a new cryptocurrency scam that has been targeting Thai investors. As reported by the Bangkok Post, the new scam poses as a legitimate digital currency trading platform operating from overseas.

The company, known as FX Trading Corporation is not authorized to operate in Thailand, a spokesperson for the SEC's Department of Special Investigations stated on Saturday. There are several other companies which are also involved in similar vices, he added, urging the public to be vigilant.

The scams all claim to be operating from overseas and operate through online portals. So far, the extent of the losses accrued to these firms is unknown.

The regulator further reminded the public that it has only authorized three companies to offer digital asset trading and one broker. The three are Satang Corporation, Bitcoin Co. and Bitkub Online. The only authorized digital currency broker in the country is Coins TH.

The SEC will continue to crack down on the crypto-related scams, the spokesperson assured. However, with the new wave of scams, the regulator's reach is limited as they are located outside Thailand. The watchdog will require the cooperation of their counterparts from the countries in which the scams operate from.

Thai regulators have been vigilant in their fight against cryptocurrency scams as the use of cryptos in the country continues to rise. As CoinGeek reported recently, the country's Anti-Money Laundering Office (AMLO) committed to tackle crypto money laundering in the Southeast Asian country. The head of the watchdog voiced his concerns that the current regulation doesn't do enough to tackle this new form of money laundering. He further committed to spearhead the amending of the country's anti-money laundering laws to enable his agency to crack down on crypto money launderers.

Thailand has continued to formulate policies that are aimed at making the country a blockchain and crypto hub. Earlier this year, the country's parliament approved the issuance of tokenized securities through blockchain technology. A month later, the SEC approved the first ICO portal in the country and promised to work on another portal for the STO industry. In May, the government revealed that it would amend the Securities and Exchanges Act to allow for the regulation of tokenized securities.

Monday, August 19, 2019

Binance Reveals ‘Venus’ — Its Own Project to Rival Facebook’s Libra

 


Top cryptocurrency exchange Binance is launching an open blockchain project "Venus" focused on developing localized stablecoins worldwide.

In an announcement published today, Aug. 19, the exchange argues it is well-positioned to launch such a currency ecosystem in light of its existing public chain technology, Binance Chain, wide user base and already established global compliance measures.

Leveraging existing know-how
The exchange says it is seeking partnerships with governments, corporations, technology firms, and other cryptocurrency and blockchain projects in order to develop a new currency ecosystem that will empower both developed and developing countries

The exchange's vision for the project, per the announcement, is to "build a new open alliance and sustainable community" that enlists partners who wield influence on a global scale.

Binance Chain, as the announcement notes, has already been running several native asset-pegged stablecoins, including a Bitcoin (BTC)-pegged stablecoin (BTCB) and the Binance BGBP Stable Coin (BGBP) pegged to the British Pound.

Binance says it will leverage its existing infrastructure and experience with various regulatory regimes to consolidate a compliance risk control system and build a multi-dimensional cooperation network for the Venus project.

Vying with Libra
Binance's ambitious new venture appears to compete directly with plans from social media titan Facebook to launch a fiat-pegged stablecoin, Libra, that would power a global crypto payments network embedded into the company's three wholly-owned apps: WhatsApp, Messenger and Instagram.

With its choice of name, "Venus," Binance is also stepping into the astrological waters of both Facebook's Libra project and the Winklevoss Twins' Gemini exchange and Gemini dollar.

Philippines Increasingly Crypto Friendly - A Look at Driving Forces

 


There are many reasons why the Philippines is becoming increasingly crypto-friendly. Not only has its central bank registered more crypto exchanges recently, but the Securities and Exchange Commission has also been actively finalizing crypto guidelines. The country has an active crypto community, and one of its largest banks has engaged in multiple crypto projects.

Rising Number of Crypto Exchanges
The number of approved crypto exchanges has been increasing in the Philippines. The country's central bank, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), has registered 13 of them so far: Betur Inc. dba Coins.ph, Rebittance Inc., Bloomsolutions Inc., Virtual Currency Philippines Inc., Etranss Remittance International Corp., Fyntegrate Inc., Zybi Tech Inc., Bexpress Inc., Coinville Phils Inc., Aba Global Philippines Inc., Bitan Moneytech Co. Ltd., Telcoin Corp., and Atomtrans Tech Corp. The latter two were added to the BSP's list of approved exchanges last month.

The central bank adopted a formal regulatory approach to cryptocurrency through the issuance of Circular No. 944 back in 2017. It requires businesses engaged in the exchange of cryptocurrencies for fiat money in the Philippines to register with the central bank as remittance and transfer companies.

Among the registered companies is Rebittance Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Satoshi Citadel Industries (SCI), a fintech company building a blockchain ecosystem in the Philippines. Co-founder Miguel Cuneta told news.Bitcoin.com that, besides the 13 registrants, many others are in "in the process of applying."

In addition, the Philippines has a special economic zone where many overseas crypto exchanges have been licensed to operate. The Cagayan Economic Zone Authority (CEZA) revealed in June that it had licensed 37 crypto exchange operators. In collaboration with property developer Northern Star Gaming and Resorts, the authority has been building "Crypto Valley of Asia" for companies operating in the Cagayan Special Economic Zone and Freeport. However, CEZA's licenses do not entitle licensees to "sell securities to Filipinos or to exchange tokens into fiat currency," the authority clarified, noting that a BSP license is needed for such purpose.

Growing More Crypto-Friendly
Cuneta further shared with news.Bitcoin.com that he believes "The Philippines has always been one of the most crypto-friendly countries in the world," highlighting several factors.

Firstly, he emphasized that the Philippines is "one of the first in the whole world" where the central bank registers companies wanting to provide services using cryptocurrency. The BSP started registering them in 2017, the same year Japan's top financial regulator, the Financial Services Agency (FSA), began registering Japanese crypto exchanges. The FSA has registered 19 operators to legally operate crypto exchanges in Japan so far. Moreover, Cuneta elaborated:

We also now have new draft guidelines from our own SEC on ICO fundraising and order-book exchange regulations, paving the way for a more mature ecosystem with our own crypto marketplace for local price discovery.

The SCI co-founder additionally remarked that his country has "an active community and active meetup groups established since 2014." He also acknowledged that CEZA "allows overseas crypto companies to register and cater to offshore customers." After conveying various reasons for the crypto savvy image of the country, he concluded that "Definitely, the Philippines is becoming more and more crypto-friendly."

Luis Buenaventura, founder and chief strategy officer at Bloomsolutions Inc., shares a similar sentiment. Describing his country as "one of the most crypto-friendly countries in the world," he told news.Bitcoin.com: "Not only do we have an actual regulatory framework for crypto exchanges, but we're also a predominantly English-speaking population that can use all the same tools and apps as North American or European audiences with minimal localization. Thus we tend to be a launchpad for U.S. startups looking to expand in the region."

As an example, he mentioned popular mobile bitcoin wallet and investing app Abra. The startup has been offering its crypto-to-fiat conversion network in the Philippines since 2016, trialing it in the country first, before expanding to others. Many Filipinos are also trading bitcoin cash on Bitcoin.com's peer-to-peer marketplace.

Crypto Adoption Advancing
Buenaventura estimates that there are approximately two million people in the Philippines who have had some exposure to crypto; some were "caught up in the buying frenzy of late 2017."

We have a fairly sizable expat population, mostly Koreans, Chinese, and Japanese so there's a lot of cross-pollination when it comes to financial technologies and payment systems.

Cuneta also believes that crypto adoption is growing in the Philippines, "at least in terms of the number of on-ramps and off-ramps we have for bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies in the country," he explained to news.Bitcoin.com. "You can send money, pay bills, buy phone credits, and exchange crypto to fiat using several central-bank licensed exchanges and service providers."

Another factor recognized by the SCI co-founder was that "Banks and other business are also more comfortable working with companies that are licensed by the central bank, unlike when we were starting out in 2014 and banks would just shut down our accounts as soon as they found out we are dealing with bitcoin." He continued, "In terms of user adoption, we see more sophisticated and knowledgeable users, traders, and enthusiasts as compared to the speculative mania of 2017."

While asserting that "Bitcoin-as-retail-payment has never caught on here," Buenaventura opined:
Less than 2% of payments in the Philippines happens digitally so the importance of creating cash-to-crypto bridges can't be overstated.

Stressing the growing number of places where "people can actively exchange physical cash for crypto," he disclosed that his company "powers about a dozen physical locations, and they're all licensed FX outlets, and we're aiming to be in 50 by the end of the year."

Unionbank's Crypto Initiatives
The Union Bank of the Philippines (Unionbank), one of the largest banks in the country, has engaged in a couple of crypto projects. Following the installation of a bitcoin ATM at its branch in Makati called The Ark, the bank has reportedly launched a stablecoin.

The Philippine Star reported on July 26 that Unionbank had issued "a stablecoin dubbed PHX and became the first bank in the country to conduct transactions using the blockchain technology." This stablecoin is not to be confused with the Red Pulse Phoenix coin which uses the same symbol. Unionbank backs the value of its coin, which is guaranteed to be at parity with the Philippine peso at all times, the publication conveyed.

A senior vice president and head of the fintech business group at Unionbank, Arvie de Vera, revealed that live PHX transactions were implemented on the bank's i2i platform. Project i2i, which stands for island-to-island, institution-to-institution, and individual-to-individual, is the bank's clearing system that connects rural banks through blockchain technology. Three banks participated: Summit Rural Bank in Luzon, Progressive Bank in Visayas and Cantilan Bank in Mindanao. Each performed buy, transfer, redemption transactions and domestic remittances using the stablecoin. Initially available only to i2i participants, the coin can be purchased and redeemed by debiting from and crediting directly to their Unionbank accounts. According to de Vera:

PHX is a stable store of value, medium of exchange and is a programmable token with self-executing logic. It enables transparent and automatic execution of payments.

SEC's Digital Asset Exchange Rules
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) of the Philippines has published a document entitled Rules on Digital Asset Exchange, which primarily governs the registration and operations of digital asset exchanges accessible in or from the Philippines.

The document has 10 main sections covering areas such as registration requirements, anti-money laundering measures, as well as the powers and responsibilities of digital asset exchanges, including capitalization maintenance requirements. "The digital asset exchange shall maintain the unimpaired paid-up capital of one hundred million pesos (Php 100,000,000.00 [~$1,912,450]) at all times … in a form, and amount as the Commission determines is sufficient to ensure the financial integrity of the digital asset exchange and its operations," the SEC document reads.

Stakeholders, exchanges, broker-dealers, investment houses, the investing public, and other interested parties had until Aug. 14 to submit their input regarding the proposed rules.