Korean Crypto Exchange Executives Fake Trading Volumes, Earn Prison Sentences

Two major executives of Komid, a cryptocurrency exchange platform based in South Korea, have been sentenced to prison, according to a report by local Korean news outlet Blockinpress. The two individuals were convicted of falsifying trading volumes on the exchange. Choi Hyunsuk, CEO of Komid, is one of the indicted individuals. He was given a

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Ethereum Constantinople Rollout Will Take Place in February 2019

According to a Twitter confirmation by Ethereum team lead Peter Szilagyi, core developers at Ethereum (ETH) have proposed that Constantinople, a system-wide upgrade that was planned to be released on January 17, has been postponed to the end of February. The tweet stated that the hard fork, which is set to be released on block 7, 280,000, will go live on February 27, 2019.

Ethereum Constantinople

Constantinople and Reduced Transaction Fees

Constantinople contains various Ethereum Improvement Proposals (EIPs) created to ease the transition from the current proof-of-work (PoW) to the proof-of-stake (PoS) consensus algorithm, which has been found to be more energy-efficient. Before the introduction of Constantinople, the ETH network would ideally charge 5,000 gas for storage operations, which is much more than the 2,300 gas sent out when contract calls are made using the send or transfer functions.

With the upgrade, storage operations for specific clients are expected to go as low as 200 gas. While the initial upgrade was expected to have been activated in November 2018, it was pushed back after an upgrade protocol on its Ropsten testnet was discovered to be defective.

The Potential Reentrancy Attack

The latest delay was necessitated by a report from ChainSecurity, a smart contract firm, that investigated some of the properties of the planned upgrade. According to the report, the Ethereum Improvement Proposal (EIP) 1283, if implemented, could create a loophole in the Ethereum network through which attackers can enter the network and steal users’ funds.

The attack was dubbed the “reentrancy attack,” as it presented hackers with the opportunity of entering into specific functions on the networks on more than one occasion without notifying users. Essentially, an attacker could use this attack to steal funds from the network forever without ever being found out.

Rollout Postponed

Upon receiving notification of the attack, Ethereum network developers, as well as the developers of some of the network’s clients, decided to abort the upgrade for the time being, as they looked into solutions. A developer’s call was scheduled for January 18, with participants including Ethereum co-creator Vitalik Buterin, Nick Johnson, Hudson Jameson and other core developers of the network.

The New Upgrade Strategy

In addition to the announcement of the new rollout date, it has also been confirmed that the EIP 1283, which was found by ChainSecurity to be faulty, will not be featured in the Constantinople release. Rather, the developers have confirmed that they will continue to run tests and refashion the EIP, to include it in another hard fork.

EIP 1283 was one of the five EIPs set to be part of Constantinople. Now, the hard fork will be released in two parts at the same time. The first upgrade will include all five EIPS, with the inclusion of the buggy EIP 1283. On the second upgrade, EIP 1283 will be specifically removed.

Peter Szilagyi, who initiated this upgrade strategy, claimed that it will help ensure that any networks that have already implemented the complete Constantinople suite will still be able to fix the buggy EIP without having to roll back any blocks.

Szilágyi said, “My suggestion is to define two hard forks, Constantinople as it is currently and the Constantinople fix up which just disables this feature.”
Several proposals were submitted concerning a new way forward for the Constantinople release.

A developer suggested a “two fork strategy to ensure compliance with the next planned hard fork by the entire network. This is because some miners have been using a false Constantinople chain, and will need to be cleanly upgraded.

There was also a suggestion of coming up with a different name for the fork. It didn’t get far, as the developers concluded that the work required was more important than the name given to things.

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Forget Bitcoin: Why Criminals are Using Fortnite to Launder Illicit Funds

By CCN.com: With well over 200 million users across the globe, few video games have as large a following as Fortnite. The freemium game is so popular that its developer, Epic Games, banked $3 billion in 2018. However, according to a report on the Independent, Epic Games isn’t the only entity getting rich off Fortnite.

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US Bill Submitted to Exempt Non-Custodial Crypto Providers from Transmitting Laws

According to data published on the official website of the United States Congress on January 14, a new bill has been re-submitted, which proposes that companies which provide non-custodial crypto-based services should be exempted from laws governing state money transmissions.

Titled “To provide a safe harbor from licensing and registration for certain non-controlling blockchain developers and providers of blockchain services,” the bill was reportedly submitted by United States congressman Tom Emmer (R-MN), while congressman Darren Soto (D-FL) served as a co-sponsor.

US Congress Crypto Bill

Emmer was reported to have planned the introduction of three more bills supporting the adoption of cryptocurrencies and their underlying blockchain technology in 2018. In addition to this recent one, the other two are titled the “Blockchain Regulatory Certainty Act” and the “Resolution Supporting Digital Currencies and Blockchain Technology.”

The FIND Trafficking Act

Back in June, the Financial Services Committee of the United States House of Representatives had proposed a bill that would launch an investigation into the use of cryptocurrencies in the sex trafficking industry.

The “Fight Illicit Networks and Detect Trafficking Act” (also called the FIND Trafficking Act) was prepared by Rep. Juan Vargas (D-CA), calling for an improvement in the efforts taken by various Federal agencies to “impede the use of virtual currencies and online marketplaces to facilitate the trafficking of drugs and sex workers.

Upon passing, the bill will require the United States Comptroller General to study how “virtual currencies and online marketplaces are used to buy, sell, or facilitate the financing of goods or services associated with sex trafficking.”

Also, the study will cover the application of cryptocurrencies in the trading of illicit drugs and substances as well. No later than a year of passing the law, the Comptroller General, who serves as the director of the Government Accountability Office, will have to prepare a report of his findings and legislative recommendations to the House Committee on Housing, Banking and Urban Affairs, as well as the Committee on Financial Services.

The Blockchain Promotional Act

Also, in October, the “Blockchain Promotional Act” was proposed to the House of Representatives. The bill, which was proposed by Rep. Brett Guthrie (R-KY) and Rep. Doris Matsui (D-CA), noted that blockchain technology had been defined separately in various draft bills.

To wit, the bill proposed that the United States Commerce Department should go on develop a working group, which will consist of various federal officials and notable members of the blockchain industry, with the aim of generating a common definition of blockchain technology.

According to the bill, the working group will also help to provide recommendations for the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) as well as the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) on the impacts of blockchain on various policies. Also, these agencies will go on to consider the possibility and feasibility of government blockchain adoption.

The Token Taxonomy Act

The “Token Taxonomy Act” was also proposed to Congress by Rep. Darren Soto, the co-sponsor of Rep. Emmer’s exemption bill, and Rep. Warren Davidson (R-Ohio), to provide clarity regarding the exact fit of crypto tokens in the regulatory framework of the Securities and Exchange Commission.
The bill defined digital tokens, essentially bringing an amendment to both the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and the Securities Act of 1933. It also states that upon becoming a fully functioning network, a cryptocurrency becomes free of any securities laws.

The Token Taxonomy Act is expected to end the financial regulators’ classification of cryptocurrencies as securities.

Also, by creating a new asset class for digital assets and cryptocurrencies, it is expected that this bill will pave the way for more favorable regulations concerning cryptocurrencies and Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs).

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Following Bankruptcy Filing: Giga Watt Mining Company Ceases Daily Operations

According to a note sent to its customers on its Telegram Support Group, Giga Watt, a provider of cryptocurrency mining services, has reportedly shut down its day-to-day operations. Moths after its Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing, the company, which has only been operating or a little over a year, has finally closed its doors.

The statement from the company reads:

As was reported in November of 2018, Giga Watt voluntarily filed with the Bankruptcy Court seeking debt relief and reorganization. Subsequent to the filing, day to day operations continued until now. At present, both access and power to the facilities in which Giga Watt operates have been closed to the company.

Giga Watt went on to note that those who have completed their know-your-customer verification can withdraw the remaining crypyocurrencies left in their wallets, although this window closes in March.

Giga Watt Mining

In conclusion, the mining firm assured clients that any change to its situation will be communicated to customers, in due time. The closure has been shocking for its clients. While customers knew about the company’s debt situation, no one thought a complete shutdown was imminent.

Giga Watt and Its Unconventional Business Model

Giga Watt was established in September 2017 via an initial coin offering (ICO). Since it launched, the mining company has prided itself on its ability to provide inexpensive alternatives for crypto miners, regardless of their scale. The company claimed that it was able to generate affordable electricity, which was offered to clients for their daily mining operations.

However, the company had a business model that was slightly different from that of other manufacturers of crypto hardware. With Giga Watt, customers maintained ownership of the mining hardware, while the company earned maintenance fees from the client’s mining rewards. Also, clients were informed via Giga Watt’s customer support page on Telegram that they could make payments to have their mining hardware shipped to their homes.

The bitcoin mining company offered much more competitive rates on utilities such as electricity, and this turned out to be unsustainable, especially considering the crypto winter.

Chapter 11 Bankruptcy

Just two days before the company made its formal bankruptcy announcement; customers were reportedly having issues with their miners. Reports surfaced of miners suddenly shutting off, with no explanation from the company seemingly likely. Upon inquiries, customer care representatives of the company had assured clients that all was well. However, when the company declared for bankruptcy, related documents showed that the company’s issues stemmed majorly from non-payment.

Giga Watt eventually filed for bankruptcy on November 11, 2018, at a Washington court. According to the filing, it was revealed that the company owed 20 of its largest unsecured creditors a total of $7 million.

Some of these creditors included Neppel Electric, which had a claim of almost $500,000, and a utilities provider in Douglas County, which was owed $310,000.
Besides, the company’s total assets were an estimated $50,000, while its total liabilities ranged between $10 million and $15 million.

Bitmain Leaves Texas

The crypto winter has continued to impact crypto-based businesses. Earlier this week, Blockonomi reported that mining hardware manufacturer Bitmain would be shutting down operations in its Rockdale, Texas plant. The company, which recently went through a major reshuffle that ended with the replacement of its two co-CEOs, has revealed its intention to shut down its $500 million mining plant, which was opened in August 2018.

Bitmain has been shutting down its international offices of recent. The crypto hardware manufacturer had previously packed up Bitmaintech Israel, the blockchain development center that developed the Connect BTC mining pool. It also confirmed reports it would be closing down its Amsterdam office, as a spokesperson for the firm, said the closure was necessitated by the need to remodel the company’s business framework.

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Crypto Critic Elizabeth Warren Officially Exploring Presidential Run

Senator Elizabeth Warren has joined the 2020 United States presidential race, after announcing on Monday that she will be developing an exploratory committee, according to a report on the Wall Street Journal. With the exploratory committee, Warren will be able to formally raise funds and make key staff appointments before she officially kicks off her

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Vitalik Buterin Bashes Bitcoin SV and Calls it a ‘Dumpster Fire’

In a series of tweets, Vitalik Buterin, co-founder of Ethereum, made his disapproval of Bitcoin Cash ‘Satoshi’s Version’ (BSV) known, calling the new hard fork of Bitcoin Cash (BCH) a “pure dumpster fire.” Buterin’s comments were made in an online Twitter debate with cryptocurrency commentator and businessman Tuur Demeester on Christmas Day. In the discussion, Buterin

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Bithumb Acquitted of All Charges in Hack-Related Lawsuit by South Korean Court

According to a report by the Korean Economic Daily, Bithumb, one of the largest digital asset platforms in South Korea, has been acquitted of charges filed against it by one of its clients.

On November 30, 2017, Bithumb was sued by an investor, Ahn Park, who claimed the company’s subpar security measures were responsible for a hack that was carried out on his cryptocurrency account, which resulted in a loss of 400 million Korean won (approximately $355,000).

Bithumb Hacked

Park claimed that he found out about the hack a few hours after it had begun—enough time for the intruder to purchase Ethereum (ETH) with his deposits and make four separate ETH transactions from his wallet into a separate wallet address controlled by the thief.  At the end of the hack, Park’s cash deposits were gone, leaving just 121 won (the equivalent of 11 cents) worth of ETH left.

Security Measures

Park argued that the company had failed to implement the kind of security measures that were befitting the status of a “financial service provider,” while also referencing an incident in July 2017 where hackers were able to gain access to the personal information of over 30,000 Bithumb users. As part of his argument, Park claimed that the security measures of the exchange have proven to be defective, and the company still hadn’t implement checks to help fix the loopholes in its security.

In addition to demanding compensation for Park’s losses, the lawsuit also asked questions about cryptocurrency exchanges, their obligations to their customers and the extent to which they can be held liable for security breaches.

Bithumb denied all liabilities in the case, claiming that apart from not being a financial service provider or electronic financier, it had sent Park SMS alerts to notify him of the transactions that were being made with the use of his account. Park stated that he never got any SMS notification.

The judge eventually ruled against Park, arguing that the company had fulfilled its obligation to him as a client, even though Park claimed he didn’t receive any of the SMS notifications, purportedly sent by the exchange.

Bithumb was the victim of a major hack earlier this year, losing $30 million in cryptocurrency holdings. The company subsequently announced that it was halting all deposits and withdrawals for a while and that it was working on compensating all users who were affected by the hack.

“We checked that some of cryptocurrencies valued about $30 million were stolen. Those stolen cryptocurrencies will be covered from Bithumb and all of assets are being transferred to cold wallets.”

In addition to that, all customer funds were temporarily moved to cold storage, noting via Twitter:

“[Notice for the restart of service] We are transferring all of asset to the cold wallet to build up the security system and upgrade DB. Starting from 15:00 pm(KST), we will restart our services and notice again as soon as possible. Appreciate for your support.”

In October, cryptocurrency swap platform Changelly announced that it was able to help Bithumb recover a million XRP from the theft. Changelly’s CEO Ilya Bere stated that the company implemented Ant-Money Laundering procedures on the Bithumb platform and targeted malicious addresses that were recognized by the platform, while also preventing the company’s Application program Interface from executing any transactions.

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South Korea: Dangerous Precedent Set – Court Finds Bithumb Not Financially Responsible for Crypto Exchange Hack

A South Korean court has acquitted Bithumb from all wrongdoings after the company was accused by one of its clients in a hacking incident that saw the customer lose thousands of dollars, according to a report filed earlier this week, in the Korea Economic Daily. The customer who brought the lawsuit against the exchange was

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Bitcoin Exchange Giant Huobi Announces Post-Christmas Layoffs

Chinese mining giant Bitmain Technology and cryptocurrency exchange operator Huobi Group have both announced plans to lay off staff but for different reasons, per reports on the South China Morning Post (SCMP). Bitmain revealed its intention in a statement quoted by the SCMP, calling the layoffs a “minor adjustment” as it restructures to build a

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Crypto Market Downturn Forces GMO Internet Group to Close its Bitcoin Mining Division

According to a document filed by GMO Internet Group, it has been confirmed that the Japan-based internet giant has decided to shut down its crypto-mining division. Through the report, the company confirmed that it would no longer “develop, manufacture and sell” mining hardware, citing extraordinary losses for this decision.

The document, which was titled ‘Recording Extraordinary Loss Related to The Cryptocurrency Mining Business Restructuring,’ highlighted the fact that GMOs Bitcoin mining division drew high amounts of losses in the fourth quarter of 2018.

GMO Miner

Going further, the document notes:

“After taking into consideration changes in the current business environment, the Company expects that it is difficult to recover the carrying amounts of the in-house-mining-related business assets, and therefore, it has been decided to record an extraordinary loss.”

GMO launched its in-house mining division in December 2017 at the height of bitcoin’s bull run. The company chose to operate through subsidiaries, two Switzerland-based corporations, and a mining center.

Analysis of the document showed that electricity costs had been a major factor affecting its performance. While these electricity costs have been sustainably high, the dip in the value of the coins being mined has made it increasingly difficult for the company to offset the imbalance. According to the document, GMO will look into moving the Bitcoin mining business to a location where they would be able to mitigate the effects of these electricity costs.

As a means of alleviating this, the company said it would “relocate the mining center to a region that will allow us to secure cleaner and less expensive power supply.”

In total, GMO’s consolidated losses for Q4 2018 amounted to 35.5 billion Yen (the equivalent of $320 million), while the unconsolidated losses see the figures rise to 38 billion Yen ($334.5 million).

Positive Q3

The news of the shutdown is particularly shocking, as the company reported favorable performances from its cryptocurrency mining division in Q3 2018. These performances included hardware sales, and overall, the cryptocurrency division of the company reported a total profit of 2.6 billion Yen ($22.8 million) during the third quarter.

GMO reported that despite the losses recorded, the “financial integrity” of the company remains intact and has not been affected.”
With GMO’s most recent announcement, the company is now the latest casualty the current bear market. Earlier this month, it was reported that Nvidia, a manufacturer of GPUs and crypto mining hardware, was the worst performer on the S&P 500 for the fourth quarter of 2018, as the continued drop in cryptocurrency prices has affected the company’s profits and sales.

GPU Manufacturers

During this quarter, Nvidia’s stock was massively dumped by investors who feared the effects of the bear market, resulting in a 54 percent cut in the price of the company’s stock. AMD, another crypto GPU manufacturer, has seen the price of its Radeon RX580 GRP slump by about 67% since February. The GPU, which reached an all-time high price of $550 per unit in February (arguably when the drop in crypto prices started), has been affected by the downturn in the crypto market. Interest in crypto mining has significantly reduced since then, resulting in a plunge in GPU sales. In its financial issues report, AMD remarked “negligible” crypto-related sales for Q3 2018.

In November, the cryptocurrency market capitalization dropped by over $100 billion. In that time, it was reported that cryptocurrency miners in China were massively selling off their mining hardware as a means of saving their businesses and abating the effects of the losses which they had incurred. As the crypto mining business continued to drop in profitability many of these miners ended up losing their businesses.

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Popula Stores News on Ethereum’s Blockchain

Subscription-based news platform Popula has made history by providing the very first fully stored news article on a blockchain platform. Earlier this week, Maria Bustillos, the editor of journalist-owned Popula, announced the placement of an article published on the website has now been stored on the distributed ledger. According to the report, the article, which was

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PwC FinTech Lead Shares Positive Outlook for Crypto Market in 2019

It’s Christmas and the year is drawing to a close. It’s that time of the year where traders take stock of their investments and prepare for the future. Oddly enough, 2018 seems to be ending on the same note as it started—with mixed feelings. However, while views on the average performance of the crypto market this

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Major Cryptocurrency Exchange Binance Lists Ripple’s XRP as a Base Pair

Crypto exchange Binance has added Ripple’s XRP as a base currency on the exchange. With this announcement, it means that XRP will now be used more as a primary asset that can be used to make purchases of other cryptocurrencies listed on the platform. Although some minor digital exchanges have already added XRP with other

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Wyoming Partners Overstock to Put Land Records on Distributed Ledger Systems

Wyoming, a state that is famous for being blockchain friendly, has announced plans to upload its land records on a distributed ledger system.

Teton County, a city in Wyoming with a population of roughly 23,300 has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Medici Land Governance who would develop a blockchain platform for the management of real estate in the city, according to its press release. Medici Land Governance is a blockchain startup wholly-owned by Medici Ventures, the blockchain investment arm of Overstock.com and the firm is already in the process of developing an entirely new registry on the Open Index Protocol (OIP).

Medici Land Governance

Land Registry on the Blockchain

The new DLT-based system will be able to keep tabs on releases of liens, mortgages and land transactions- to name a few. According to the companies, the new system will be able to bring an additional layer of preservation and strength to the existing security and privacy protection measures.

In part, the release stated, “The title information that is obscured for viewing on the current system will also be obscured from the blockchain-based system, but all public records will be available at the county clerk’s office…We are proud to see Wyoming lead the way in implementing cutting-edge technologies, such as blockchain, into existing markets like land registry.”

Sherry Daigle, County Clerk for Teton County, commented on the partnership, lauding the state for leading the path for the integration of the nascent technology with public service.

We are proud to see Wyoming lead the way in implementing cutting-edge technologies, such as blockchain, into existing markets like land registry.

According to the press release, the registry for Teton County, although revolutionary, is only the first stage. Upon undeniable success, Medici confirmed that it would be expanded to include other counties in the state of Wyoming.

Long-Term Practical Value of Blockchain

Medici Land Governance CEO, Ali El Husseini noted in the release that the partnership with the County shows the “long-term practical value” of the blockchain. He said the County could grow its reputation even further with the development of the soon-to-be-developed platform for property registry, which would be “digitized, secure, and user-friendly.”

Caitlyn Long, the co-founder of the Wyoming Blockchain Coalition, said the partnership was one of the many steps Wyoming has taken in “blazing blockchain trails.” By blazing the trail, Long was referring to the Governor’s decision to sign into law a measure that exempts utility tokens from securities regulation in the state and a host of friendly blockchain bills waiting to be heard by legislatures in January.

“Medici Ventures has been a big supporter of Wyoming’s blockchain initiatives from inception, and I’m thrilled that Teton County chose Medici Ventures for this project.”

Long also revealed some of the other ambitious plans that are set to be undertaken by the state of Wyoming, including but not limited to transferring all government business records and corporate registrations to distributed ledger systems.

Earlier this year, Medici Land Governance entered into a collaboration with the Zambian government to develop a blockchain-based land registry for the country. According to the deal, 57% of the formed company is to be owned by Medici ventures (the blockchain subsidiary of Overstock, not Medici Land Governance), while Patrick Byrne, CEO of Overstock, will hold the remaining 43%.

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Bimain’s IPO Application in Doubt as Hong Kong Calls Crypto Industry ‘Immature’

Bitmain, the largest manufacturer of Bitcoin mining equipment, is experiencing something of a rough patch, as Hong Kong’s stock market overseers might be reluctant to approve the initial public offering (IPO) application of the company, given their stated concerns about the lack of a proper regulatory framework that can govern the cryptocurrency and blockchain industry.

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Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong Commits Bulk of Crypto Fortune to Charity

Having launched GiveCrypto.org earlier this year to make direct cryptocurrency transfers to people living in poverty, Brian Armstrong — CEO of US crypto exchange giant Coinbase — has now promised to give a huge chunk of his fortune away to charitable causes. “This year, I started my first philanthropic effort, GiveCrypto.org, which makes direct cash

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‘It’s Not Surprising’ the Market Is Recovering Says Coinbase President Asiff Hirji

Not the Christmas run we expected, but bitcoin has continued to rise, despite a bearish run that saw prices crash from $5,000 to an all-time low of $3,200. Asiff Hirji President of U.S. crypto exchange Coinbase said the current recovery is not surprising and the run should continue into the next year. Speaking with CNBC’s

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HMRC Releases Tax Guidelines on Digital Assets

Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs, the tax agency for the United Kingdom, has released a set of guidelines that are to guide crypto investors on how to make tax payments and how they should see their digital assets. The updated guidelines were drafted to help token holders to meet their taxation obligations by bringing clarity

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Bank of England Measures Preferred Transaction Methods: Crypto Leads

It’s the festive season again; that time of the year where love is celebrated through the acts of giving. However, for some people, the concept of presenting gifts might be a little too complex to understand. These people don’t believe in sending gifts to their loved ones, they rather send money or gift cards that

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Blockchain Technology and the Quest to Transform the Travel Industry

The year 2018 hasn’t particularly been the best year for cryptocurrencies, as the bear market had eroded value in almost every digital asset out there. However, while cryptocurrencies aren’t having the best of times, blockchain technology has managed to stay relevant, with organizations and governments coming out with ways through which they can use blockchain

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Western Union Hints At Using Cryptocurrency In Its Services

American based financial service Western Union is finally ready for cryptocurrencies. In a video interview with Reuters Plus, Western Union President Odilon Almeida said the company has been evaluating the use of cryptocurrency. They are also exploring how they can improve their service delivery using blockchain technology. Western Union is interested in adopting cryptocurrencies as an

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Iranians Turn to Bitcoin Mining to Cushion the Effects of U.S. Sanctions

Iran is in the middle of a bit of an economic crisis right now. Due to hiccups caused by the sanctions that were imposed by the United States government a while back, the government of Iran has had its hands full with merely keeping its economy afloat. Due to this, it would appear that the

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Quinone CEO Backs Bitcoin to Reach New All-Time High by 2019

It’s no secret the crypto industry is not particularly at its most profitable moment. However, despite the dire state in which the crypto market has found itself, there are certain people who believe things will turn around in a big way — a new all-time high, even. Among these is Mike Kayamori, CEO of Quinone,

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Chinese Internet Court Uses Blockchain To Combat Online Plagiarism

An Internet Court launched in Eastern Chinese City Hangzhou will now use blockchain to fight plagiarism for online writers, local Chinese news outlet China.org.cn reported. China launched its first internet court in the city of Hangzhou to deal with internet related cases, save time and reduce overhead costs of getting justice out of the system. At

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BitPay CEO: Speculation is a Major Aspect of Bitcoin’s Value, Mass Adoption Soon

Stephan Pair, CEO of BitPay, has stated that a very large aspect of the price of Bitcoin comes from the speculation of investors concerning the adoption of blockchain technology and the usage of the currency in the nearest future. In an interview with Squawk Box on CNBC, Pair said since speculative practices of investors on bitcoin’s future usage plays a significant role in determining its current value, it is a bit more difficult to determine the driving price of the currency.

Bitcoin Bear Market

The U.S. based BitPay is a global bitcoin payment processor that allows online merchants to process crypto payments from their customers. The Bitpay head honcho stated in the interview:

“A very big component of the price is certainly speculation. It’s investors speculating on the future usage and adoption of this technology. A small component of the price is actual utility, and that’s what BitPay is focused on — using the platform and delivering products to our customers that they find valuable.”

Level of Crypto Adoption

The BitPay Chief was also quizzed on his personal views concerning the level of adoption that cryptocurrency and the blockchain technology, has gotten so far. A little under a year ago, when Bitcoin hit its all-time high value of $20,000, there were signs that the mass adoption of cryptocurrency was edging even closer than was expected.

What is Bitcoin? Complete Guide

Read: What is Bitcoin? Ultimate Guide

However, since then, and with the subsequent drop in the currency’s value, a calmer perspective has been the consensus, and analysts have also gotten realistic with their time frames, figures like five to ten years are now being pushed around for mainstream adoption.

Pair echoed the same sentiments, saying are closer to the attainment of mass adoption than we think.

“I used to say 10 years, but now I think it’s more like 3-5 years until you can go into a restaurant, a retail establishment, and just everybody’s going to expect that that store will be able to accept a blockchain payment.”

Market Downturn

Cryptocurrencies have seen more adoption by businesses in the past year. However, with the current state of the market, it is also possible for the level of adoption to fizzle out, as cryptocurrencies continue to lose their value, thereby making them even less efficient as both investment vehicles and means of payment.

Adoption has always been one of the challenges of the crypto industry, with many believing that the goal is not just to get digital assets to increase in value but to encourage businesses to integrate them into their operations. In some way the problem is self-inflicted; one of the main driving forces of mass adoption is clear regulation, and the current undecided stance of major crypto markets like the United States and Britain on how to regulate the sector is not helping matters.

Pair’s sentiment is shared by a few other notable crypto figures, with Anthony Pompliano stating that the bear market has caused a mass exodus of the “tourist investors” who put money into crypto without actually having an understanding of how the technology works.

Still, it is incredibly difficult to determine whether this current bear market is another cycle in the history of the crypto market, or whether the market has been able to achieve stability already. Bobby Lee is of the belief that the former is the case, even though investors will prefer the latter scenario. In a tweet shared with his followers, the Co-founder of Hong Kong-based crypto exchange BTCChina said:

“If history repeats perfectly, then the current bear market for #Bitcoin would bottom out at $2,500 next month, in Jan 2019. And then the next rally would start in late 2020, peak out in Dec 2021 at $333,000, and then crash back down to $41,000 in Jan 2023. Something like that?”

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Teenage Crypto Millionaire Erik Finman Says Bitcoin is Pretty Much Dead, Offers Hope for Bitcoin Cash

Erik Finman, a teenager who became filthy rich during the Bitcoin boom, has now issued a warning to Bitcoin maximalists, the term given to those who believe in the Bitcoin revolution, that the currency has a bleak long-term outlook. Finman has a habit of bashing digital assets. In 2017, he told Mic that he wasn’t convinced

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Iranian Official Believes Blockchain Can Drive Economic Growth

According to an Iranian official, the integration of blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies could provide a much-needed boost to the country’s economy, per reports on the Tehran Times. Alireza Daliri, a Deputy for Management Development and Resources at the Vice Presidency for Science and Technology, stated that blockchain technology could provide Iran with a platform to

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PSA: If You Mine Ethereum, You’re a Target for Crypto Hackers

Hackers have devised a new way to steal your cryptocurrencies. This time, they are running a massive scanning campaign to pick out Ethereum wallets and miners with a specific vulnerability. Per reports on ZDNet, crypto hackers are targeting Etherum wallet and mining equipment going through devices with an exposed port 8545, the standard port for

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