Daily News Digest Featured News

Monday April 16 2018, Daily News Digest

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United States

International

European Union

United Kingdom

Asia

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News Summary

United States

$ 1.6 billion bitcoin exchange Coinbase just acquired a smaller competitor (Business Insider), Rated: AAA

On Friday, Coinbase announced its acquisition of Cipher Browser, a cryptocurrency wallet company that lets users store ethereum-based tokens. It’s similar to Coinbase’s existing ethereum browser, Toshi.

Mystery of the empty Bitcoin blocks: Spy mining and Agorism (crypto insider), Rated: AAA

Over 87,000 empty blocks were included in the Bitcoin blockchain as of July 2017. Here’s why some of Bitcoin’s largest mining pools act to the detriment of the network for their own self-interest, and why we SHOULDN’T do anything about…

bitcoin mining pools
Source: BitMEX

A Bitcoin Rally After Tax Day? Don’t Bet the Farm (CoinDesk), Rated: A

Certainly, with the April 17 U.S. deadline to file approaching, there’s much speculation that the crypto winter of 2018 was largely due to investors frantically selling to raise funds so they could pay taxes on 2017 gains.

But there are several reasons to discount the contribution of such selling to the recent market rout – and thus the probability that prices will suddenly surge again after Tax Day.

How bitcoin is fueling America’s opioid crisis (CNBC), Rated: AAA

And when the crypto craze erupted on Wall Street last year, Shamo appeared to have placed an expert bet. The value of his holdings shot from about $767,000 to at least $10 million over the course of a year.

Shamo is accused of trafficking the deadly opioid fentanyl and financing the operation with bitcoin. Law enforcement uncovered more than 500 bitcoin after raiding his house in 2016. Shamo is now in prison awaiting trial, and prosecutors said they are investigating 28 fatal overdoses in connection with his alleged drug ring.

Authorities say Shamo is part of a new generation of criminals who buy and sell drugs online — and cover their tracks with cryptocurrencies. They’ve turned the internet into one of the main arteries for fentanyl traveling into the United States, according to officials.

Fake Coinbase ERC20 Support Email Attempts to Phish Private Keys (CryptoSlate), Rated: A

A new phishing email targeting Coinbase users has recently emerged, and appears to be one of the most sophisticated Coinbase phishing attempts to date. Reports from the cryptocurrency community show that the new scam email is attempting to capitalize on Coinbase’s recent announcement of ERC20 token support.

The scammers behind the Coinbase phishing email have even included a direct link to the Coinbase blog ERC20 support announcement, which reinforces the credibility of the email.

coinbase phishing
Source: CryptoSlate

Blockchain Capital raises $ 150 million for new fund (Axios), Rated: AAA

Blockchain Capital, an investor in such companies as Coinbase and Ripple, has raised $150 million for its fourth fund.

Why it matters: This appears to be the largest venture capital fund raised to focus exclusively on blockchain and cryptocurrency technologies.

6 Surprising Ways Consumers Are Using Cryptocurrencies (Money), Rated: A

1. Gambling. “One of the most unique ways I’ve seen people using cryptocurrency is on decentralized betting.”

2. Charitable donations. Fidelity Charitable revealed earlier this year that it had received $69 million in cryptocurrency donations in 2017 alone.

3. To conceal money in divorce. Briggs Stahl, a partner with RGL Forensics, a financial investigation firm in Tampa Bay, Florida, says that he has run into this a couple times, where a spouse tried to hide money in a divorce by transforming cash into bitcoin.

4. To protect themselves against hyperinflation. “The most unusual way I am seeing cryptocurrency used is as a fail-safe against hyperinflation. In countries like Zimbabwe and Venezuela, everyday citizens are buying crypto simply to protect themselves from poverty if their fiat currency takes a nosedive,” says Dean Anastos, a New York City-based founder and CEO of Blockchain Developers.

5. Bartering. Shidan Gouran, president and chief operating officer at Global Blockchain Technologies Corporation in Toronto says that Bunz.com, a Toronto-based online bartering community, has been particularly successful at using cryptocurrencies for trading.

6. As a new medium for investing excess financial aid money. The Student Loan Report, a website for student loan information, did a survey from March 16 to March 20 and asked 1,000 current college students about what they did with extra financial aid revenue. According to the survey’s findings, 21 percent of students reported putting their money into cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin and others.

Four Most Influential Cryptocurrencies (Coin Announcer), Rated: B

  1. Bitcoin
  2. Litecoin
  3. Ethereum
  4. Ripple

5 Security Questions To Contemplate Before Investing In Cryptocurrencies (ValueWalk), Rated: AAA

Of the flocks of newcomers to cryptocurrency investing, many are chasing the dream returns that some of the earliest adopters experienced. After all, who wouldn’t want to spend just $27 to get a return of a whopping $886,000 in four years?

Day Trading and Swing Trading

Typically, these approaches carry a large degree of both investment and security risk. Unless you know what you’re doing, it can be easy to lose your money in a matter of minutes, even seconds. Additionally, such frequent transactions require users to keep most, if not all, of their assets on a cryptocurrency exchange – which have been breached and looted in the past. What’s more, these tactics often require a full-time commitment, which is not feasible unless you choose to become a professional trader.

HODL-ing

While some coins, such as Bitcoin and Ethereum, are relatively established, cryptocurrencies in general have a history littered with failures. This is why it’s important for investors to do their research before buying any currency – and especiallythe newest coins to enter the market. And, since the HODL strategy requires investors to store their assets for an extended period of time, thieves and fraudsters have more opportunity over the long-term horizon to get their hands on your coins if they’re not properly protected.

Digital Currency IRAs

Since Digital Currency IRAs are offered through third-party firms with expertise in retirement investments, alternative assets and security, investors can rest easy knowing that their cryptocurrency nest egg is in well-qualified hands.

Securing Your Digital Assets

Hot wallets offer the convenience of immediacy, and are therefore often used by active investors who day trade or swing trade. However, with this convenience comes a significant risk of hacking.

As long as your device/wallet is connected to the Internet, it is at risk of being hacked.

On the other end, hardware wallets and paper wallets are very secure.

TenX to issue Litecoin debit cards (Crypto-Reporter), Rated: A

TenX has signed a partnership agreement with Litecoin Foundation. The company will start working on a debit card for LTC, as reported in the official blog. Charlie Lee confirmed the news in his Twitter account.

This Hidden Cryptocurrency Risk Is Beginning to Take Shape (The Motley Fool), Rated: A

As I said, 2017 was a picture-perfect year for cryptocurrencies. However, they entered 2018 with a list of risks that was a mile long. A potential increase in regulation surrounding digital currencies, as well as growing access by institutional investors who have a less than optimistic view on their valuation, has weighed on the market. In fact, from peak to trough, cryptocurrencies have shed 70% of their market cap since Jan. 7, 2018.

But it’s not necessarily a step up in regulation that’s most concerning for virtual currency investors. Instead, it’s a hidden risk that I alluded to back in early January: class action lawsuits.

What Are The 7 Highest-Risk Cryptocurrencies? (Forbes), Rated: B

Here are Weiss’s seven riskiest cryptos, which means they scored either “E” or “E-” on their scale: Comet, Expanse, Matchpool, Megacoin, Novacoin, Quark and Salu$.

Cryptocurrencies: The Creation of AI, Aliens or Even the Antichrist? (How Stuff Works), Rated: A

But what they didn’t go into is the dark side of this new digital currency. That’s the focus of part two of the podcast. Ben, Matt and Noel sit down again with Jonathan, who helps dissect the conspiracy theories and shady practices surrounding bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies in Cryptocurrency Conspiracies, Part Two.


Is The Bounce In Crypto For Real? (Forbes), Rated: A

I would be foolish not to at least reconsider that view after this past week when

  • Price moves were strong and consistent and took thinks like Bitcoin back above the 200 day moving average
  • As reported in cointelegraph and other sources, George Soros is allegedly investing in bitcoin, which is worth noting since as recently as Davos, he seemed dismissive of Crypto
  • Mounting concerns about Russia and Syria seemed to help crypto (just like when easing tensions in North Korea seemed to hurt crypto)
  • Any tax related selling should be over
  • There does seem to be a correlation between FANG and Crypto – both did well post the February lows and now FANG has rebounded after Zuckerberg’s testimony.

If You Invested $ 1,000 in the 5 Largest Cryptocurrencies a Year Ago, Here’s How Much You’d Have Today (The Motley Fool), Rated: A

I’ll discuss the exclusions in the next section, but the five largest cryptocurrencies that have been around for a year or more are:

  • Bitcoin: Bitcoin is still the most valuable cryptocurrency by a wide margin, and its returns include other coins that have “forked” from it, such as bitcoin cash.
  • Ethereum: Instead of being designed as a payment currency like bitcoin, Ethereum is designed for business applications.
  • Ripple: Like Ethereum, Ripple isn’t designed as a payment currency. Rather, Ripple is specifically aimed at the banking industry to facilitate cheap and efficient money transfers, especially internationally.
  • Litecoin: Litecoin actually formed from a fork in the bitcoin network back in 2011. Because it came from bitcoin, Litecoin is also intended as a payment currency, and with shorter transaction times and lower fees, there’s a case to be made that it’s a more practical method of payment.
  • Stellar: Stellar offers customers transaction-processing times of just a few seconds and has attracted attention from major corporations such as IBM.

Here’s how much each one is trading for now and how much it has gained over the past year.

Cryptocurrency Price on April 13, 2018 Price on April 13, 2017 % Change
Bitcoin (BTC-USD) $8,074.00 +$753.76 $1,177.30 650%
Ethereum (ETH-USD) $510.88 $48.50 953%
Ripple (XRP-USD) $0.6632 $0.0335 1,880%
Litecoin (LTC-USD) $130.16 $11.61 1,021%
Stellar (XLM-USD) $0.2574 $0.00325 7,820%

DATA SOURCE: WWW.INVESTING.COM. PRICES AS OF APRIL 13, 2018 AT 10:30AM EDT.

Strategist Says XRP “Not A Security,” Remains Positive On Coinbase Listing (BTCManager), Rated: A

In an interview with CNBC, a senior executive of Ripple said the company’s native XRP token is not a security. The statement comes after widespread speculation regarding the digital token’s listing on Coinbase, which follows strict guidelines and strives to remain legally compliant.

New Blockchain Playbook Helps Governments Embrace The Tech And Cut Through Hype (Forbes), Rated: A

Applications of the technology across the federal government are being aggressively explored, in conjunction with artificial intelligence, machine learning and robotic process automation.

But as public sector blockchain fever continues to grow – even amid reportedinstances of vendors trying to sell “blockchain solutions” that aren’t actually blockchain to naive agency IT procurement managers, a need has emerged for a roadmap and how-to manual designed to help practitioners better understand the technology’s potential, cuts through hype and jargon and ultimately deliver better value for taxpayers.

These 3 Things Could Sky Rocket The Price Of Ripple XRP (CryptoDaily), Rated: B

Just yesterday, Banco Santander released a statement which confirmed suspicions that the app would use blockchain technology.

With Ripple’s integration into MoneyGram’s systems, it has been suggested that one day, Ripple and Walmart could partner up, integrating XRP as both a payment option for transfers within Walmart2World and of course as a physical currency for use in Walmart stores, again, if this happens, the value of XRP would shoot right up.

A partnership between global payment provider ‘Cambridge Global Payments’ and Ripple has seen the company use xCurrent and test xRapid for payment solutions within their platform.

Will Coinbase Ventures Lead to Conflicts of Interest? (Kaplan Herald), Rated: A

All this may seems like a bit of a history lesson, but there‘s potentially more to it. That‘s because Coinbase isn‘t any longer a little startup. Rather, the first “bitcoin unicorn” is fast becoming a big business, and on April 5, the company announced its latest expansion: a new venture capital arm.

But while little is known about the initiative (Coinbase declined to comment for this article), some believe they know enough to worry that the idea could result in conflicts of interest.

Why Leading Crypto Devs Don’t Work In Silicon Valley (CoinDesk), Rated: A

The tweet, sent out by Coinbase vice president and general manager Dan Romero, represented a rare request from the San Francisco-based exchange. Despite building on various cryptocurrency protocols for years, it was perhaps the first time the company had signaled it would offer financial support to someone working directly on open-source code.

Hospitality-Based Blockchain Taps Into Millennials’ Love Of Cryptocurrencies (BISNOW), Rated: A

Who would have thought that the idea of collecting tokens in video games would eventually inspire the hotel industry to do the same?

Seeing this trend emerging, Brillembourg created STEP, a blockchain protocol designed to decentralize the coordination of travel goods and services, starting with hotel room nights.

STEP stands for Simple Travel Ecosystem Protocol. It aims to take online travel agencies, like Expedia and Priceline, out of the mix.

Civil Seeks to Civilize Journalism with Blockchain Tech (Media File DC), Rated: A

According to the Nieman Lab, all articles published by Civil’s newsrooms will not only be published on an accessible website, but will also be copied onto the Ethereum blockchain (viewable here).

This means instead of articles being deleted and unable to be archived–like what the former journalists of DNAinfo and Gothamist ran into when their sites were suddenly shut down–they would be preserved somewhere on the Ethereum blockchain as a backup.

The second main part of Civil is creating a decentralized market for journalism. With the usage of CVL tokens, people who care about the newsrooms they are reading can support good journalism with these tokens or, more simply, in paying the newsrooms with regular money like regular news companies.

Civil

How do you know if blockchain is right for your business? (Housingwire), Rated: A

Carl DiClementi, director of product, and Crystal Wiese, director of marketing for Factom, provide a four-step roadmap to help companies get started.

  1. Learn the basics of blockchain technology and why certain blockchains may be better suited for your business than others.
  2. Ask, will blockchain save me money? Bring more customers? Save auditing costs? Take a step back and analyze production practical use cases for how blockchain will add value to your company.
  3. Create a budget for blockchain experimentation, research and implementation.
  4. Spend the budget wisely. Seek out opportunities to interact with blockchain and test user data to play with. You don’t need blockchain developers for this, all you need is to find a service that will hide the blockchain complexities, allowing you to easily understand the blockchain use case for your business through a graphical user interface.

Crypterium Announces Payments Partnership with World Capacity Builders (BusinessWire), Rated: A

Crypterium, the crypto bank for everyone, has announced a new partnership with World Capacity Builders. This union extends Crypterium’s global physical and digital reach, in its efforts to find a viable payments solution for every country: WCB boasts an existing worldwide network of payment solutions capabilities as they target the 2 billion unbanked people throughout the world. This extensive network of payment services also lends itself to traditional payments markets which are ripe for extending to crypto currency solutions.

Crypterium Announces Tokens Available on HitBTC Exchange (BusinessWire), Rated: B

Crypterium announces that beginning on Monday, March 26 their tokens will be available on the HitBTC exchange.

Lunyr (LUN) Market Capitalization Tops $ 23.64 Million (The Ledger Gazette), Rated: B

Lunyr (CURRENCY:LUN) traded up 11.2% against the dollar during the 24-hour period ending at 16:00 PM Eastern on March 29th. Over the last seven days, Lunyr has traded 33.8% higher against the dollar. One Lunyr token can now be purchased for approximately $10.29 or 0.00127231 BTC on exchanges including Binance, YoBit, BigONE and HitBTC. Lunyr has a total market capitalization of $23.64 million and approximately $3.81 million worth of Lunyr was traded on exchanges in the last day.

Lampix Reaches Market Capitalization of $ 3.34 Million  (Stock News Times), Rated: B

Lampix (CURRENCY:PIX) traded down 1.4% against the US dollar during the 24 hour period ending at 11:00 AM ET on March 21st. One Lampix token can now be purchased for $0.0247 or 0.00000304 BTC on major exchanges including Bit-Z, ForkDelta, BigONE and CoinExchange. Lampix has a total market capitalization of $3.34 million and $5,781.00 worth of Lampix was traded on exchanges in the last 24 hours. During the last seven days, Lampix has traded up 26% against the US dollar.

Lafayette Parish, Louisiana Considers Development Of Municipal Cryptocurrency And ICO (CoinTelegraph), Rated: B

Mayor-President Joel Robideaux of Lafayette parish, Louisiana proposed the parish government to create its own cryptocurrency and consider launching an Initial Coin Offering (ICO), local news The Acadiana Advocate reported April 12.

Get 30% discount to Los Angeles Crypto Investment conference (Next Big Future), Rated: B

Use the code : NextBigFuture30
to get 30% off your ticket.

International

Banking Giant SBI Subsidiary Joins R3 Blockchain Consortium (CoinDesk), Rated: AAA

SBI Bank LLC, a Russia-based commercial bank owned by Japanese financial giant SBI Holdings, is joining the New York City-based banking consortium R3.

In an announcement Friday, the bank said it aims to join the financial group to advance R3’s Corda distributed ledger (DLT) platform, and push cross-industry adoption of blockchain technology.

The Resurgence of DAOs: How an Ethereum Fork (eInc) Is Scripting It (NewsBTC), Rated: AAA

DAO 2.0 gained momentum with the rise of Aragon in beta phase, which offered a solution for establishing a borderless organization on the Ethereum blockchain and successfully raised $25 Million.

EtherInc (also called eInc), a blockchain based startup from Australia, has managed to successfully launch its product in LIVE mode on its own blockchain.

eInc is an Ethereum fork to create, manage and operate decentralized autonomous organizations (DAOs). eInc is a community-driven decentralized blockchain project for creating a digital organization based on cryptographic proof instead of trust, that can operate borderless, permission-less, democratically and transparently with the consensus of its shareholders, without the need of a trusted third party and/or costly intermediaries.

THE IMPENDING TECHNICAL FORK IN THE ROAD FOR BITCOIN & ETHEREUM (Irish Tech News), Rated: AAA

The short answer: with every day that we move away from the convergence point of lines A & C and move in the right direction by keeping the long-term support line intact (line A), a short-term uptrend is being established and the less likely it is that we will need a longer recovery time to reach the all-time highs we experienced just 3-4 months ago.

bitcoin technical analysis

The anatomy of a recovery can be seen below:

Bitcoin

Technical Analysis Of Ethereum (ETH): A Real Head Scratcher

ethereum technical analysis

Venture Capital Firm Greycroft’s Bitcoin Bet Eyes South Africa, the Emirates, and Ethereum (Fortune), Rated: A

On the latest episode of Balancing The LedgerFortune’s show covering all things cryptocurrency, fintech, and blockchain, Rosiello discussed her inability to invest in the recent initial public offering on the Toronto Stock Exchange of a friend’s company: Hut 8, a cryptocurrency mining company backed by Bitfury, a Bitcoin mining giant and mutual investor in Rosiello’s own Bitcoin startup, BitPesa, based in Nairobi, Kenya.

“I had been living for 10 years in sub-Saharan Africa and I couldn’t open a [U.S.] brokerage account quickly because I didn’t have a utility bill,” Rosiello said. “My physical presence in another region excluded me from engaging in investment.”

These Countries Won’t Tax Your Bitcoins Too Much (Bitcoin.com), Rated: A

Germany, Europe’s economic locomotive, has been quite careful with crypto taxation. Last month the Federal Ministry of Finance issued a notice which treats bitcoin as a currency.

Capital gains of individual investors trading cryptocurrencies are not taxed in Slovenia.

Tax authorities in Denmark have said that fintech companies should pay taxes just like any other business. On the other hand, individual investors trading cryptos do not owe any tax on their gains.

Gains from cryptocurrency transactions are still tax free in South Korea.

Buying bitcoin will save you taxes in Singapore.

‘Honeypot’ Crypto Scam Targets Would-Be Coin Thieves (Finance Magnates), Rated: A

However, a new kind of scam turns the typical crypto scam narrative on its head. In a so-called ‘Honeypot’ scam, the targets are the very same malicious actors who seek to take advantage of someone who doesn’t know any better.

The wannabe thieves had no idea what they were in for. Although the wallet did contain $5000 worth of MNE, the wallet didn’t have a single shred of ETH to pay for the ‘gas’ necessary to process transactions on the Ethereum network.

Therefore, in order to successfully extract the MNE tokens, the thieves needed to send ‘gas’ in the form of ETH tokens. What they didn’t know was that the mastermind behind the scheme had coded a script that automatically sent the incoming ETH to another address.

Your Battery Has a Human Cost. Can Blockchain Fix That? (Green Tech Media), Rated: A

The majority of exported cobalt, a key component of lithium-ion batteries, originates in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Much of the production comes from small and artisanal mines, where cobalt is plucked by hand. In 2014, UNICEF estimated that about 40,000 children worked in DRC’s mines.

In order to monitor the process on a blockchain, Owen said the system would use “bagging and tagging” and check-ins at different nodes of the chain, which would then be logged on a distributed ledger. That information could be made available on a publicly accessible platform, where producers all the way up to consumers could see where raw materials originated and how they traveled.

Encrypted Email File Storage Mail Coin? (BitcoinExchangeGuide), Rated: B

Safe.ad is a secure communications platform for businesses who are interested in end-to-end encryption email and file storage. The platform provides businesses with the opportunity to experience a greater deal of security so that their customers can feel confident that they are using the right platform. Safe.ad is also planning an initial coin offering, which will be available at a pre-sale and the tokens will come with a discount as well. The discount amounts to 25% and it will continue for the next five days.

MyCreditChain ICO (MCC Token): Blockchain Credit For Assets? (BitcoinExchangeGuide), Rated: B

My Credit Chain (MCC) is a blockchain-based credit ecosystem that claims to help create a new relationship better relationship between creditors and lenders, which may help to stimulate new financial activities. My Credit Chain helps to bring about an innovation in credit information for people to maintain their credit information for themselves.

Plantoids: Blockchain Based Lifeform Plant Equivalent Robot? (BitcoinExchangeGuide), Rated: B

The species of Plantoid is autonomous, blockchain-based and able to reproduce on its own. This hybrid creature lives both in the real world and in the digital world. Plantoid aims to illustrate a revolutionary aspect of the blockchain that has yet to be explored. These are algorithmic entities, which are autonomous, self-sustaining, and capable of reproduction via a combination of human interaction and code that runs on the blockchain.

European Union

Malta Proposes Financial Instrument Test for Cryptocurrency Companies (Finance Magnates), Rated: AAA

The Malta Financial Services Authority has released a consultation paper relating to its ongoing cryptocurrency regulation process.

Specifically, the ‘Financial Instrument Test’ could be used to decide if a DLT-related company, asset or service “is encompassed under (i) the existing EU legislation and the corresponding national legislation, (ii) the proposed Virtual Financial Assets Act or (iii) is otherwise exempt.”

financial instrument test
Source: MFSA

Malta Regulator Seeks Feedback On Proposed Crypto Financial Instrument Test (CoinTelegraph), Rated: B

The consultation paper on the Financial Instrument Test notes that the MFSA is “seeking feedback from the industry” before moving forward with a final variation of the test, and the public can voice their opinions through a surveyactive through May 4.

New Company Opens Door to Malta’s Crypto Market (GlobeNewswire), Rated: A

Decentralised Ventures is a partnership between Malta-based Initial Coin Offering (ICO) specialist TokenKey and token research and Blockchain consultancy Strategic Coin.

It has been set up to support the Maltese government’s plans to create the world’s first fully regulated market for ICOs, distributed ledger technology (DLT) and virtual currencies.

Ethereum Price Decline Was Expected, Flawed Argument (NewsBTC), Rated: A

The report titled Cryptocurrencies: Past, Present, and Future in which researchers claim to have used a combination of historical data and a “data-driven algorithm” has resulted in some very optimistic predictions for the near future of Bitcoin Cash while calling for grim times ahead for Ethereum, saying it “will plummet by more than $237 per unit in the next month or so.” as reported by the Express.

Confusion over regulation and warnings that the cryptomarket is an empty bubble have taken their toll on all of the top trading tokens but Ethereum may have suffered the most having lost around 70% of its value since it’s high mark of $1,338.67 in December.

Cryptocurrency Investors Are Fleeing Switzerland Due To ICO Regulations (Inquisitr), Rated: A

Tech billionaire Tim Draper, an avowed bitcoin bull, says Switzerland is losing its status as a cryptocurrency haven amid escalating regulatory crackdowns on initial coin offerings (ICOs).

Draper, who set a $250,000 bitcoin price target for 2022, made the remarks at the Crypto ICO Summit in Zurich.

HashCard Comes to Rescue: Enabling Traditional Spends With Cryptocurrency (BTCManager), Rated: A

In a comprehensive solution to users’ ability to employ a cryptocurrency debit card, the HashCard project is offering a crypto-linked card that will enable traditional card payments but with digital currencies.

Ubank Launches Platform to Aid the Consumer Investment in Cryptocurrency (The Currency Analytics), Rated: A

Ubank launches a platform, a peer-to-peer ecosystem that would help different users become investors thru selling real goods and receiving cryptocurrency in exchange.

Ubank team expands the business of the mobile payments app and launches Ubcoin Market. Every participant could either sell or purchase goods as an exchange for the cryptocurrency.

Bank of Lithuania Initiates Dialogue Between Crypto Investors, Banks, And Regulators (Crypto Globe), Rated: B

Bank of Lithuania, the country’s central bank, is reportedly opening up to cryptocurrencies, as it recently initiated a dialog between cryptocurrency traders, commercial banks, and government regulators in the country. Reportedly, the country is looking to become a fintech hub.

United Kingdom

End ‘Wild West’ days of cryptocurrencies, Ripple urges UK regulators (The Telegraph), Rated: AAA

Ripple, the world’s third largest digital currency, has urged British regulators to follow in the footsteps of Japan and implement new rules to end the “Wild West” days of the cryptocurrency market.

The Crypto Conundrum – Regulatory Pressures for Cryptocurrencies (WCCFTech), Rated: A

Financial regulation has existed in some form or other for hundreds of years and in general (certainly recently) it has a few good objectives:

  • Maintaining confidence in the workings of the financial services industry.
  • Maintaining the stability of the financial services system.
  • Protecting consumers from fraudulent activities.

Should You Worry About Investing in Unregulated Cryptocurrencies?

Certainly if you’re traditionally a cautious investor, you’re probably (for the time being) going to want to avoid them. There is a lot of money to potentially be made (and lost) in the crypto world, but there are a lot of risks which are risks that would be inherently mitigated by investing in traditional securities and by the regulatory regimes which govern them. As such, it’s right to investigate any cryptocurrency you’re considering investing in.

Constellation claims to be 1000x faster than Bitcoin or Ethereum (Enterprise Times), Rated: A

Constellation has announced its emergence from stealth mode with a horizontally scalable protocol that it claims is at least 1000x faster than Bitcoin or Ethereum.

In addition, the Proof-of-Meme model claims to make blockchain technology meritocratic, infinitely scalable and useful for both consumer- and enterprise-grade applications which require intensive distributed computing. Possible uses include big data, artificial intelligence, medical data analysis and 3D video rendering.

Constellation uses its Proof-of-Meme machine learning algorithm to achieve consensus. This method:

  • incorporates a node’s historical participation into delegate selection
  • rewards benevolent behavior.

Lionsgold makes an offer to take control of Goldbloc digital currency ahead of UK launch (Proactive Investors), Rated: A

Lionsgold Limited (LON:LION) told investors that it has now made an offer to acquire all of the Goldbloc digital currency.

The company presently owns 55% of TRAC Technology, the developer of Goldbloc, and it has now made a £1.35mln share-for-share offer to the remaining shareholders. It would see the consideration shares paid to TRAC shareholders priced at 2.3271p each, giving the business a valuation of £3mln.

Iris.ai launches Project Aiur: an open, community-governed AI Engine for Knowledge Validation (Iris Email), Rated: A

Iris.ai, the artificial intelligence tool which helps researchers find relevant scientific papers, today announced the launch of Project Aiur: building an open, community-governed engine that will allow users to access and contribute to a validated repository of scientific research. The aim of Aiur is to democratise access to and extend the reach of scientific knowledge worldwide by disintermediating the industry.

Extrabit’s private pre-sale ICO offers the EXB token at half the price (Digital Journal), Rated: B

Extrabit, a crypto mining company is holding its private pre-ICO sale through which the investors can purchase the token at 50% off. The price of 1 EXB (the official token of Extrabit) is equal to $0.25 in the pre-sale period. The official ICO will begin on May 1st, 2018 and will be composed of three rounds, each offering the EXB at a price of $0.35, $0.45, $0.50 respectively. The ICO will last till May 27th, 2018.

China

BINANCE BURNS $ 30 MILLION IN BNB TOKENS, PRICE DROPS (Bitcoinist), Rated: AAA

Earlier today, the Binance team announced the results of its Q2 2018 coin burn in an official poston the exchange’s support page, writing:

Fellow Binancians,

In accordance with our whitepaper, we have now completed the burn of 2,220,314 BNB (roughly $30MM USD equivalent) for the our [sic] 3rd quarter.

Binance’s token fell nearly 9 percent against Bitcoin today, but it’s USD losses were largely mitigated by the market leader’s bullish weekend. Binance Coin is currently down only 2 percent against the dollar over the last 24 hours.

Baidu Launches Blockchain Photo Service (CryptoSlate), Rated: A

The Chinese search engine Baidu launched its blockchain stock photo service to help protect intellectual property in China. The stock photo service is named Totem and went live earlier this week. Totem uses a blockchain network to timestamp and verify submissions for each photograph. The originator’s name is stored and associated with each image using distributed ledger technology.

Australia

How Australia Is Becoming A Cryptocurrency Continent (CoinTelegraph), Rated: AAA

As it stands, Australia is ranked 14th globally for BTC volume by currency. At time of publishing, the Australian dollar (AUD) saw volumes of AUD $2,810,190, or 276 BTC over a 24 hour period.

To put that in perspective, Japan sits on top, with a 60 percent dominance, processing 30,1404 BTC over 24 hours.

Samsung estimates savings of up to 20% from blockchain logistics (finder), Rated: B

Now Samsung is examining the merits of a blockchain system for its manufacturing supply chains, and might be finding the benefits hard to ignore.

According to SDS, the blockchain system could cut Samsung’s shipping costs by 20%.

Asia

Indian BTC exchange Coinsecure finds itself $ 3.5m lighter (The Register), Rated: AAA

Indian Bitcoin exchange Coinsecure has mislaid 438.318 BTC belonging to its customers.

The vanished Bitcoin stash was worth £2,493,590 ($3,547,745) at the time of publication, and apparently departed Coinsecure’s secure coin servers on April 9.

RBI’s decree will shatter cryptocurrency business in India, say stakeholders (Economic Times), Rated: A

The Reserve Bank of India’s announcement on cryptocurrency has not only stirred the market but left both the traders and investors in a state of loss with many of them thinking of wrapping up their operations.

Indian Life Insurers Partner with Cognizant to Develop Industry-Wide Blockchain Solution (PR Newswire), Rated: A

Cognizant (Nasdaq: CTSH) and a consortium of leading Indian life insurers — comprising SBI Life Insurance, Max Life Insurance, Canara HSBC OBC Life Insurance, Edelweiss Tokio Life, IDBI Federal Life Insurance, Birla Sun Life Insurance, HDFC Life, Kotak Life, Tata AIA Life, PNB MetLife, IndiaFirst Life Insurance, ICICI Prudential Life Insurance, Bharti AXA, Aegon Life, and SUD (Star Union Dai-ichi) Life Insurance — today announced that they have developed a blockchain solution to facilitate cross-company data-sharing. This will enable the insurers to reduce the risk of data breaches, fraud and money-laundering, while delivering superior experience to customers through improved process efficiency, better record-keeping, and accelerated turnaround time.

Digital Currency May Violate Current Law (Urdu Point), Rated: A

Central bank digital currency, once established as legal money by the monetary authority, may conflict with South Korean law, a report said Monday, amid heated debate over virtual money across the world.

Crypto Exchange bitFlyer Upgrades User Verification Process after FSA Criticism (BTCManager), Rated: B

In response to the FSA query, the platform has stated via its website announcing that it will be upgrading its user verification process. Beginning from April 26, users will not be able to make crypto deposits or fiat withdrawals without having first completed the user verification process.

To verify their identities, users must receive a postal letter from the exchange platform. The new user verification rules also affect users who use bitcoin to pay for goods via the platform. The service will be disabled for such users until they have completed the user verification exercise as well.

Enkidu builds smart contracts, makes blockchain for micro-corporations (YourStory), Rated: B

Headquarters: Bengaluru

Founders: Shashank Udupa and Varun Mayya

Funds raised: Self funded, Rs 1 crore invested

What do they solve: They enable blockchain based smart contracts for micro-corporations or the freelance economy.

 

Eurasia

Why The Telegram Ban Is Good News For Its Cryptocurrency (Forbes), Rated: AAA

It proves its Russian founder, Pavel Durov, now living in self-imposed exile somewhere between Dubai and a Caribbean Island, has held his ground against the Russian FSB, the top intel agency that has been after Telegram to reveal its encryption keys to law enforcement.

Historically, cryptography existed for governments. It was mostly a military device. And it was as secretive as any communications code or weapons technology. Now we are seeing cryptography trickle down to the individual. That is really what the whole cryptocurrency revolution is based on: using cryptography to send messages, and pay for services, at times bypassing governments and larger corporations entirely.

Telegram has over 200 million active monthly users worldwide.

Latin America

CriptoHub and Its Plan to Become Brazil’s Largest Crypto-Exchange in under a Year (NewsBTC), Rated: AAA

By the end of 2017, 1.4 million Brazilians engaged in either the purchase or sale of cryptocurrencies. Many of the Brazilian crypto-exchanges have recorded daily enrollment of new users steadily increasing from an average of 500 new users per day to numbers as high as 5000 a day. As a matter of fact, there are more investors buying virtual currencies today than there are in the stock market.

Currency is traded daily, averaging 75 million dollars in Bitcoins.

Brazilian Crypto Businesses, Exchanges Create “Rival” Cryptocurrency Associations (CCN), Rated: A

Brazil’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges, including Bitcointrade, Mercado Bitcoin, Foxbit, and others, recently joined forces to create a cryptocurrency association whose goal is to defend the interests of cryptocurrency users.

Headed by fintech firm Atlas Project, other crypto-related companies seemingly joined forces to create another organization, dubbed Associação Brasileira de Criptomoedas e Blockchain (ABCB).

Canada

Cryptogiving.ca matches digital currency donors with charities (Business Insider), Rated: A

Today, a new website connecting donors interested to give to charitable organizations that accept cryptocurrencies was launched. Cryptogiving.ca will serve as the single point of reference to connect individuals looking to contribute with charities across Canada that are willing to accept digital currencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum.

Adam Sharek Joins GoldCoin Team as Head of Exchange Relations (Digital Journal), Rated: B

GOLDCOIN (GLD) has kicked its mission of creating the world’s greatest form of money into high gear by tapping the talents of Adam Sharek, the team’s new Head of Exchange Relations.

DLTA 21 Blockchain Corp. Announces Corporate Name Change (GlobeNewswire), Rated: B

DLTA 21 Blockchain Corp. (the “Company”) The Company is pleased to announce that it has changed its name from “Protos Blockchain Corp.” to “DLTA 21 Blockchain Corp.”, which better reflects its core investment strategy of offering intelligent investment exposure to blockchain and the rapidly developing Distributed Ledger Technology (“DLT”) landscape.

Africa

Demand for digital mining hardware drops (BusinessDay), Rated: AAA

Following the selloff of bitcoin and other digital coins, demand for cryptocurrency mining equipment has tapered off in SA, sales data suggest.

MENA

ITDC Partners with Guangdong Chamber of Commerce to Promote SilkChain in Middle East (Business Insider), Rated: A

The International Trade Digitalization Commission (ITDC) has partnered with the Guangdong Chamber of Commerce in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to promote the commercial application in the Middle East of ITDC’s SilkChain, the world’s first blockchain project dedicated to improving global trade. The Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed between GuangdongChamber of Commerce Secretary General Yuan Yongjia, and CEO of DinoRiver (OSell World) Yi Qing, which is also one of the founder institutions of ITDC.

Authors:

George Popescu
George Popescu
Allen Taylor
Allen Taylor

About the author

Allen Taylor

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