Image Image Image Image Image Image Image Image Image Image Image Image

| July 19, 2018

Scroll to top

Top

news.bitcoin.com Archives - Page 251 of 259 -

Azerbaijan Rejects Crypto as Means of Payment

December 5, 2017 |

Azerbaijan Monitoring Cryptocurrency Before Regulating, Rejects Crypto as Means of Payment

The chairman of Azerbaijan’s Central Bank (CBA), Elman Rustamov, has described the nation’s position regarding cryptocurrencies as ‘conservative’ according to local reports. Mr. Rustamov stated that the CBA does not recognize cryptocurrencies as a legitimate means of payment and that the central bank intends to develop a “legislative infrastructure” before “introducing [the] technology.”

Also Read: Venezuela Announces the Creation of Oil-Backed National Cryptocurrency – the Petro

Mr. Rustamov Addressed Cryptocurrencies During Budget Discussions in the Azerbaijani Parliament Late Last Month

LEFT: Mr. Rustamov

The central bank chairman stated “We think that cryptocurrencies continue to be a dangerous instrument for investing,” describing the CBA’s position regarding crypto as conservative.

Mr. Rustamov stated that CBA will monitor international trends in cryptocurrency and blockchain regulation before developing a regulatory framework for various distributed ledger technologies. Mr. Rustamov stated:

“The Central Bank intends to help in studying this technology and its future use in the financial and banking sector of Azerbaijan, and in the future in public services for the population. For this, we have already started negotiations with leading consulting companies. I think that at the first stage, we must create stable technological and legislative infrastructure, and then start introducing this technology.”

The Central Bank of Azerbaijan May Develop Blockchain Technology

Azerbaijan Monitoring Cryptocurrency Before Regulating, Rejects Crypto as Means of PaymentThe CBA’s first deputy chairman, Alim Guliyev, recently indicated that the central bank may explore the adoption of blockchain technology for the payment systems and electronic identity verification, following a meeting with Swiss officials at the end of November.

Azerbaijan joins a growing number of countries that have rejected recognizing cryptocurrency as a legitimate means of payment. Earlier this week, Indian Finance Minister Arun Jaitley stated: “The government’s position is clear, we don’t recognize this as legal currency as of now.” Indonesia has also recently moved against legitimizing cryptocurrencies, with nation’s central bank expected to develop prohibitive regulations during 2018. Numerous authoritative regimes have expressed a similar sentiment, including the governments of China, Russia, and Vietnam.

What is your response to Azerbaijan’s central bank’s comments on cryptocurrency? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Wikipedia


Keep track of the bitcoin exchange rate in real-time.

The post Azerbaijan Rejects Crypto as Means of Payment appeared first on Bitcoin News.

Bitcoin News

Report Claims That 46% of All Funds Generated by ICOs Have Been Raised in Europe

December 5, 2017 |

Report Claims That 46% of All Funds Generated by ICOs Have Been Raised in Europe

Research conducted by Atomico, a prominent European venture capital firm, claims that nearly half of all funds generated through initial coin offerings (ICOs) has been raised in Europe. The findings have been published in the third edition of Atomico’s State of European Tech Report.

Also Read: The Ethereum Blockchain Is Congested by Cats

“There Are More ICO Projects Coming From Europe-Based Entities and European Founders Than Any Other Region”

Atomico’s assessments regarding ICOs is principally drawn from data compiled by TokenData. Although 90% of all financing raised through ICOs has occurred during 2017, the data purports to have analyzed the funds raised by all initial coin offerings since 2014.

Atomic’s report asserts that European ICOs have raised 46% of all financing generated through initial coin offerings, or roughly $ 1.76 billion USD. The findings also conclude that almost half of funds raised in Europe have gone to ICOs based in Switzerland, predominantly within Zug – a low-tax region that has emerged as a major international hub for cryptocurrency innovation. The research states that roughly $ 828 million has been generated by ICOs based in Switzerland, equating to approximately 47% of all funds raised in Europe.

North American Initial Coin Offerings Are Estimated to Have Raised $ 1.08 Billion USD Since 2014 – Roughly 28% of All Funds Raised Through ICOs

Report Claims That 46% of All Funds Generated by ICO Have Been Raised in EuropeThe report states that “Europe is well-positioned to play a key role in crypto space,” adding that “There has been an explosion of European developer engagement with cryptocurrencies, most notably on Ethereum-related topics.”

Based on Deloitte analysis of GitHub Data, the report concludes that the United Kingdom, Germany, and Russia host the largest number of blockchain development projects in Europe. According to the data, of the 8,265 active blockchain projects in Europe, the U.K. accounts for 1,674, Germany 1,307, and Russia 721. However, the research notes that the United States domiciles 9,565 active blockchain projects.

The report also states that Europe hosts the largest number of “reachable Bitcoin nodes by region” with 5,221, followed by the United States with 3,375, and then China with 622.

Are you surprised by Atomico’s findings? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Atomico.


Need to calculate your bitcoin holdings? Check our tools section.

The post Report Claims That 46% of All Funds Generated by ICOs Have Been Raised in Europe appeared first on Bitcoin News.

Bitcoin News

Israeli Regulator: We Need to Welcome Cryptocurrency to Develop International ICO Hub

December 4, 2017 |

Israeli Regulator: We Need to Welcome Cryptocurrency to Develop International ICO Hub

One of the toughest financial regulators in Israel has made some surprisingly positive comments today regarding the acceptance of ICO crowdfunding and cryptocurrency. The outgoing chairman of the Israel Securities Authority (ISA) talked about a need to foster the creation of an international financial center based on ICOs.

Also read: Reports of Israeli ICO Ban Are Fake News, Entrepreneurs Look to Create ‘Crypto Nation’

Israeli Regulator: We Need to Welcome Cryptocurrency to Develop International ICO Hub
Prof. Shmuel Hauser, Outgoing ISA Chairman

Speaking for the last time as the ISA head before the Israeli corporations conference, Prof. Shmuel Hauser discussed the main challenges that the regulatory body still faces. Regarding ICOs he said:

“We will have to bring order to the market. Some countries decided to examine digital tokens on a case by case basis. A small number decided to ban them. We have decided to find out, with a team headed by the chief economist and the head of the corporations division, under which terms is it a security? Coin? Or some hybrid I call a security-coin?

“The team is meant to file its report by the end of December. We will have to define for ourselves and the market what is this beast. Among other things, we will need to consider expanding the supervision on security-coin and define a proper regulatory framework, different from the one we know for IPOs.

“I believe that the topic of digital currencies and their offerings must receive a favorable regulatory response, maybe even daring somewhat, to give a chance for the option to develop an international financial center for security-coin from the type of ICOs.”

Still, the professor added that the regulatory framework will need to show a certain degree of paternalism to make sure ICOs won’t develop in directions he considers to be negative.

ICO Nation

Israeli Regulator: We Need to Welcome Cryptocurrency to Develop International ICO HubThough they had very little to do with its development, Israeli politicians and high-ranking bureaucrats often pride themselves in the country’s ‘Startup Nation’ status.

About 5,000 high-tech startups are estimated to be operating in Israel at any moment. Most of them fail to mature due to local VCs allowing them very short growth periods before pressuring them to sell out or pulling the plug. ICOs could help fill this much talked about gap between seed funding and full blown IPO.

If regulators were to just step back and refrain from suffocating the nascent ICO scene in Israel, it is expected that a thousand ICOs could be launched in the country in 2018.

How should Israeli regulators promote ICO projects in the country? Tell us what you think in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, ISA.


Do you like to research and read about Bitcoin technology? Check out Bitcoin.com’s Wiki page for an in-depth look at Bitcoin’s innovative technology and interesting history.

The post Israeli Regulator: We Need to Welcome Cryptocurrency to Develop International ICO Hub appeared first on Bitcoin News.

Bitcoin News

Bitcoin-Based Ethereum Smart Contract and Sidechain Rival RSK Launches Today

December 4, 2017 |

Bitcoin-Based Ethereum Smart Contract and Sidechain Rival RSK Launches Today

RSK Labs has announced that the main network of their Bitcoin-powered smart contract platform is launching in beta on Monday after more than two years of development. The company claims to have secured the support of 90 percent of Bitcoin’s hashing power for merge mining the RSK sidechain. All developers are encouraged to take part in a bug bounty program during this beta phase.

Also read: Japan Increases Lead – Approves Another Four New Cryptocurrency Exchanges

RSK Mainnet’s Beta Launch

Bitcoin-Based Ethereum Smart Contract and Sidechain Rival RSK Launches TodayBlockchain technology company RSK Labs announced on Monday the official beta launch of their open-source smart contract platform RSK, codenamed Bamboo.

The Ethereum competitor is a sidechain to the Bitcoin blockchain, offering a smart contract platform that uses bitcoin as well as offering layer-two scaling benefits. The company’s Chief Scientist, Sergio Lerner, commented:

We’re very excited to share the RSK mainnet source code with the community. It’s very important for us to get everyone’s feedback and peer review. The RSK project belongs to the whole ecosystem and we need to work together to build the Internet of Value over the Bitcoin Network.

Bamboo uses the RSK mainnet blockchain and network, unlike the previous RSK testing platform named Ginger. “The mainnet will be in beta for four months,” the company’s CEO and co-founder Diego Gutierrez Zaldivar said on the company’s telegram channel, noting that Bamboo will initially be using 21 RSK tokens, known as smart bitcoins, which they will distribute to testers during the 4-month period. “The peg will be limited during the beta phase and we’ll progressively lift all restrictions and leave it run into the wild,” he revealed, adding that the bitcoins will be spread between “Dapp developers and companies running solutions.”

90% Bitcoin Hashing Power Support

Bitcoin-Based Ethereum Smart Contract and Sidechain Rival RSK Launches TodayFor the RSK sidechain to be secured, it must be mined alongside Bitcoin’s blockchain in a process called merge mining, which allows both blockchains to be mined at the same time.

According to the company, Bamboo “is currently secured by bitcoin miners representing more than 60% of the total Bitcoin hashing power,” who are already running the RSK merge mining plugins. Furthermore, another “30% of the Bitcoin network has already expressed their support to RSK and will start merge mining in the next couple of weeks,” the company claims, stating:

RSK allows bitcoin miners to increase their profits receiving fees from all smart contracts running on RSK with the same hardware, energy consumption and zero-efficiency loss in their so far primary business – the bitcoin mining.

Slush Pool founder Marek Palatinus commented on the launch of Bamboo: “This is a major milestone for RSK and the Bitcoin community as a whole. We’re very glad about the innovation and use cases that smart contract powered by Bitcoin could bring to the ecosystem.” He added:

We at Slush have completed the merge mining implementation to secure RSK smart contracts while providing a new revenue source to our miners.

Bug Bounty Program

Bitcoin-Based Ethereum Smart Contract and Sidechain Rival RSK Launches TodayTo help ensure that none of Ethereum’s problems with insecure code occur with RSK, the company is focused on “performing new audits and security checkpoints,” even though the platform has already completed two external audit processes. A set of tools have been developed to monitor the network’s status and performance, as well as to offer network statistics.

With the launch of Bamboo, RSK is taking the additional security precaution of inviting developers worldwide “to peer review the source code and be part of the Bug Bounty Program.” The company added:

A Bug bounty program has been released to the global community of developers inviting every blockchain programmer as well as audit companies and partners to be part of it, providing feedback and helping to improve the technology.

What do you think RSK will do for Bitcoin? How will Ethereum be impacted? Let us know in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock and RSK.


Need to calculate your bitcoin holdings? Check our tools section.

The post Bitcoin-Based Ethereum Smart Contract and Sidechain Rival RSK Launches Today appeared first on Bitcoin News.

Bitcoin News

The Ethereum Blockchain is Congested by Cats

December 4, 2017 |

The Ethereum Blockchain is Congested by Cats

Even though Bitcoin is much larger than Ethereum it isn’t the only blockchain to suffer scaling issues: the ethereum network is presently experiencing a transaction backlog. The cause of the commotion? Cats. While the runaway success of Crypto Kitties has prompted widespread amusement, it highlights the vulnerabilities built into ethereum smart contracts. When one ERC20-based project goes viral, it risks taking the entire network down with it.

Also read: Blockchain-Based Digital Art – Passing Fad or the Next Big Thing?

Cybersquatting Kitties Cause Carnage

The Ethereum Blockchain is Congested by CatsAs news.Bitcoin.com recently reported, Crypto Kitties – a sort of Beanie Babies for the blockchain generation – has proved an unexpected smash hit. Unfortunately, the project seems in danger of becoming a victim of its own success, having risen in a matter of days from just 4% of the total network traffic to 14%. This has resulted in a transaction backlog, with hundreds of kitty lovers waiting for their new pets to be issued on the blockchain, prompting Crypto Kitties to tweet:

Due to network congestion, we are increasing the birthing fee from 0.001 ETH to 0.002 ETH. This will ensure your kittens are born on time! The extra is needed to incentivize miners to add birthing txs to the chain. Long-term solution will be explored very soon!

For impatient virtual pet-owners waiting in line, Crypto Kitties has promised to absorb some of the costs for gas used to send transactions through the ethereum network. The number of unconfirmed transactions in the ethereum mempool soared to 15,000 today, with Crypto Kitties bearing the brunt of the blame.

The Ethereum Blockchain is Congested by Cats

Bad Kitties Bloat the Blockchain

The Ethereum Blockchain is Congested by Cats
Crypto Kitties: cute but deadly.

This isn’t the first time the ethereum network has come under strain due to the success of ERC20-based projects. In June, for example, Bancor’s oversubscribed ICO caused the blockchain to crawl to a halt. This is the first time a live Dapp has had a similar effect though and it doesn’t bode well for the network’s scalability. While most ethereum-based projects are unlikely to attain the critical mass necessary to impact transaction times, Crypto Kitties shows that it only takes one viral hit to drag everyone’s projects down.

A casual endorsement from Vitalik Buterin earlier today probably hasn’t helped ease demand for the network’s newfound killer app.

The Ethereum Blockchain is Congested by Cats

While ethereum developers debate the best way to scale around the problem, bitcoin devs have been enjoying a moment of schadenfreude, having endured similar jibes for months. Both bitcoin and ethereum are still at the early adopter stage, when problems caused by virtual kitty birthing induce more laughs than groans. For blockchains to be relied on by major enterprises, however, solutions will need to be found that can overcome the threat posed by digital cats.

What do you think can be done to prevent blockchain bloat? Let us know in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, and Crypto Kitties.


Bitcoin Games is a provably fair gaming site with 99% or better expected returns. Try it out here.

The post The Ethereum Blockchain is Congested by Cats appeared first on Bitcoin News.

Bitcoin News

Despite Warnings China’s Over the Counter Bitcoin Economy Is Booming

December 4, 2017 |

Despite Warnings China's Over the Counter Bitcoin Economy Is Booming

Bitcoin in China has deep roots as a vast majority of mining takes place in the region, and the country once accounted for the lion’s share of the world’s BTC trade volume. These days, however, renminbi and bitcoin volume coming from mainland exchanges is virtually non-existent, but there’s a whole lot more international and underground action happening within the over-the-counter (OTC) crypto-economy.

Also read: Japan Increases Lead – Approves Another Four New Cryptocurrency Exchanges

CNY/BTC Trade Volume Is Virtually Non-existent As China’s Market Action Has Moved to Hong Kong, OTC Markets, and Tether

In the past Chinese bitcoin trade volume captured the majority of global trades for quite some time, and the renminbi (¥ CNY) was usually the top currency traded with BTC. However, these days CNY represents less than 0.03 percent of the world’s bitcoin trade volume and ranks number 20 amongst all the other global currencies. Even though CNY volume is down, Chinese exchanges are still functioning internationally in places like Hong Kong according to the Bitcoin Association of HK’s founder and tech-columnist Leonhard Weese. The top three Chinese exchanges Huobi, Okcoin, and BTCC now only capture 7 percent of the global trade volume Weese explains. For instance, at the time of writing, Huobi is swapping $ 194M USD worth of BTC paired with Tether. Okcoin only accounts for $ 11M worth of BTC trades and BTCC is trading $ 146M in BTC, ETH, BCH, and ETC. The controversial Tether (USDT) medium of exchange has interestingly replaced the CNY as far as worldwide volumes by currency.

Despite Warnings China's Over the Counter Bitcoin Economy Is Booming
China used to be the #1 currency by volume for bitcoin trade but now represents #20. The CNY only captures 0.03 percent of the global share.

Over-the-Counter Dealers Reap the Benefits, But China’s Government Is Watching

Even though Chinese exchange volume is lower than in the past, and renminbi pairs are not taking place within the region  OTC trading is booming. This week Chinese Localbitcoins trades are at an all-time high outpacing the last time exchanges went on hiatus. Additionally, other OTC platforms are also seeing a surge in demand like Poim, Richfund.pe, and Coincola. These companies not only provide substantial orders of bitcoins to investors, but also contribute liquidity to the top three Chinese exchanges who are utilizing international borders as a shield. Richfund is well known as a significant bitcoin hedge fund and OTC dealer within the region and supplies funds to many institutions.

“[Richfund] makes a very large contribution for depth and volume and is a is a strategic partner of Huobi, explains CEO Lin Li on the company’s website.

However, as news.Bitcoin.com reported last month, the Chinese government doesn’t seem to appreciate the peer-to-peer markets. On November 11, China’s Central Television (CCTV-13) warned viewers of the risks involved with OTC bitcoin trades. The warning has not stopped people from trading underground via Telegram channels, Wechat, and Alipay. Chinese trade volume on the peer-to-peer platform Paxful is at an all-time high as well.

Even though there’s a lot of underground action PBOC officials seem pleased that they shut down mainland bitcoin exchanges from utilizing CNY trades. According to the regional news outlets Yicai Global the vice governor at the People’s Bank of China (PBOC) explains that the central bank was right to intervene in regard to China’s cryptocurrency economy. The central bank’s Pan Gongsheng explains;

If we didn’t shut bitcoin exchanges and crack down on initial coin offerings (ICOs) a few months ago, and if more than 80 percent of the world’s bitcoin transactions and financing activities were still taking place China, which was the case back in January, what would it be like today?

Despite Warnings China's Over the Counter Bitcoin Economy Is Booming
Localbitcoins volumes in China continue to break new records.

   Four OTC Providers Competing for China’s OTC Spillover

The top three exchanges Huobi, BTCC, and Okcoin alongside Localbitcoins, Poim, Coincola, and Richfund are also not the only businesses competing for OTC customers. Other over the counter dealers have moved into that area including Circle Financial, Gatecoin, Octagon Strategy, and the newcomer Genesis Block. The privately owned Octagon Strategy Limited says they specialize in providing digital asset liquidity offering cryptocurrencies like ethereum and bitcoin. The Hong Kong-based cryptocurrency exchange Gatecoin is receiving a lot more attention these days since Chinese exchanges ceased operations. The platform founded in 2013 caters to both retail investors and large market makers as well.    

News.bitcoin.com reported on the creation of Genesis Block in Hong Kong and how the company also helped jumpstart the Bitcoin Cash network. These OTC-centric companies have a minimum amount of how many bitcoins are required for purchase which is typically no less than $ 100,000 to $ 10Mn per order. Circle Financial had previously set up a strategic position in the region creating a Beijing-based subsidiary called ‘Circle China’ back in June of 2016. Its liquidity services arm ‘Circle Trade’ is doing quite well in the area dedicating its resources to OTC markets.

What do you think about the bitcoin and cryptocurrency situation in China? Do you think exchanges will come back and renminbi will dominate again? Or do you think China’s bitcoin dominance days as far as trade volume is concerned is over? Let us know what you think in the comments below.


Images via Shutterstock, Crypto Compare, and Coin Dance. 


Make sure you do not miss any important Bitcoin-related news! Follow our news feed any which way you prefer; via Twitter, Facebook, Telegram, RSS or email (scroll down to the bottom of this page to subscribe).

The post Despite Warnings China’s Over the Counter Bitcoin Economy Is Booming appeared first on Bitcoin News.

Bitcoin News

Cboe Beats CME to the Market, Will Launch Bitcoin Futures December 10

December 4, 2017 |

Cboe Beats CME to the Market, Will Launch Bitcoin Futures December 10

Very few people would have imagined just a year ago the rapid pace of bitcoin adoption by established financial institutions today. We are now seeing two of the largest exchange holding companies in the world, CME and Cboe, racing to be the first to answer Wall Street’s appetite for bitcoin derivatives – and Cboe just got a leg up on its rival.

Also read: CME Rival Cboe Suggests its Coming Futures Market Would Include Bitcoin Cash

Cboe Beats CME to the Market, Will Launch Bitcoin Futures December 10Cboe Global Markets (Nasdaq: CBOE) has announced today that its Cboe Futures Exchange (CFE) subsidiary plans to offer trading in bitcoin futures beginning on Sunday, December 10, just over a week before the CME planned launch. Attempting to further attract investors to its venue over CME’s, the Cboe head also announced that trading will be free through December.

Ed Tilly, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Cboe Global Markets, said: “Given the unprecedented interest in bitcoin, it’s vital we provide clients the trading tools to help them express their views and hedge their exposure. We are committed to encouraging fairness and liquidity in the bitcoin market. To promote this, we will initially offer XBT futures trading for free.”

Product Details

Cboe Beats CME to the Market, Will Launch Bitcoin Futures December 10The Cboe’s bitcoin futures will trade on CFE under the ticker symbol ‘XBT.’ The new instruments are cash-settled contracts based on the Gemini exchange’s auction price for bitcoin, denominated in U.S. dollars.

The company explains that its XBT futures are specifically designed to allow participants to implement straightforward trading strategies, through settlement to a single, tradeable auction price.

It previously revealed that they will have multiple contracts with several expiry cycles and also four serial expirations, among other details. It has even been suggested that in the future Cboe may add futures trading on bitcoin cash to differentiate its offering from that of the larger CME.

What does this race to launch bitcoin futures trading mean for investors? Tell us what you think in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock.


Do you like to research and read about Bitcoin technology? Check out Bitcoin.com’s Wiki page for an in-depth look at Bitcoin’s innovative technology and interesting history.

The post Cboe Beats CME to the Market, Will Launch Bitcoin Futures December 10 appeared first on Bitcoin News.

Bitcoin News

Three Kenyans Face Felony Charges for Selling Bitcoin to a Bank Robber

December 4, 2017 |

Three Kenyans Face Felony Charges for Selling Bitcoin to a Bank Robber

One of the fundamental aspects of money is that its origins are irrelevant for its use or value (Pecunia non olet), also called fungibility. Simply put, one shouldn’t face charges if someone used ill-gotten funds to buy something from oneself. This principal is now under question in Kenya where three bitcoin traders have gotten into trouble with the law for unknowingly dealing with an alleged criminal.

Also read: Gold Mining Company’s Shares Jump 1,300% After Switch to Bitcoin

The Charges

Three Kenyans Face Felony Charges for Selling Bitcoin to a Bank RobberEmma Kariuki, Stanley Mumo and Timothy Gachehe were brought before the Kenyan federal court in Nairobi on conspiracy to commit a felony charges last week. The three are accused of participation in the theft of 10.2 million Kenyan shillings from a local bank and M-pesa (African mobile payments service operator).

This money was allegedly robbed from I&M Bank and Safaricom Pay (Bill No 517822). Part of it was then sent to the bank accounts of the three defendants.

According to a news report from the country, the Kenyans deny any involvement in the heist. Apparently they have been trading bitcoin for fiat on Localbitcoins for the past five years and the transfers from the alleged bank robber were just another payment for a deal, as far as they knew. They even have the chat transcripts to prove that they sold Ƀ1.2 to Localbitcoins user ‘BADASS20’ in exchange for the stolen loot.

Three Kenyans Face Felony Charges for Selling Bitcoin to a Bank Robber
BADASS20 on Localbitcoins.com

The three posted bail of half a million Kenyan shillings in cash and were released until an hearing set for January 18. Their bank accounts were also frozen. The investigative authorities have not yet identified who is behind the ‘BADASS20’ moniker.

Dangerous Precedent

Three Kenyans Face Felony Charges for Selling Bitcoin to a Bank RobberUnlike large financial institutions that can employ costly and vast arrays of lawyers in regulatory compliance departments, individuals can not be expected to have AML and KYC procedures for dealing with other people.

If the three will be found to unknowingly have helped a bank robber with evading the law or laundering his spoils but are still convicted, it could create a chilling effect on bitcoin use in the country.

Many Kenyans have so far benefited from bitcoin as can be seen from its growing use in the country. Just recently a Kenyan miner made headlines around the world when he described the cryptocurrency as “the biggest wealth-distribution system ever.”

How would you defend yourself in such a case? Tell us what you think in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Localbitcoins.


Do you like to research and read about Bitcoin technology? Check out Bitcoin.com’s Wiki page for an in-depth look at Bitcoin’s innovative technology and interesting history.

The post Three Kenyans Face Felony Charges for Selling Bitcoin to a Bank Robber appeared first on Bitcoin News.

Bitcoin News

UK Ministry of Treasury Plans to Regulate Bitcoin

December 4, 2017 |

The British are Coming! UK Ministry of Treasury Plans to Regulate Bitcoin

Regional reporting insists Her Majesty’s Treasury (Treasury) of the United Kingdom (UK) is “launching a crackdown on the virtual currency Bitcoin amid growing concern it is being used to launder money and dodge tax.” Bitcoin enthusiasts, however, understand that the world’s most popular cryptocurrency’s continual all-time-high price records, rather than terror or tax avoidance, are drawing more governments into formal regulation policy and pronouncements.  

Also read: Egypt Finance Attorney General Calls for International Governance of Bitcoin

Treasury Worries about Bitcoin and Terror, Theft

“These new forms of exchange are expanding rapidly and we’ve got to make sure we don’t get left behind – that’s particularly important in terms of money-laundering, terrorism or pure theft,” explained Labor Party Minister of Parliament (MP) John Mann. Mr. Mann is also a member of the Treasury Committee.

The British are Coming! UK Ministry of Treasury Plans to Regulate Bitcoin
Paul Revere

Regulatory Lag

“I’m not convinced that the regulatory authorities are keeping up to speed. I would be surprised if the committee doesn’t have an inquiry next year,” Mr. Mann said.

The country’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), however, issued warnings this year, both for investors and firms involved in everything from cryptocurrencies to initial coin offerings. It even went so far as to pronounce bitcoin as not being a currency.

Mr. Mann concluded, “It would be timely to have a proper look at what this means. It may be that we want to speed up our use of these kinds of things in this country, but that makes it all the more important that we don’t have a regulatory lag.”

early in 2018, the minister in charge has said.”

The British are Coming! UK Ministry of Treasury Plans to Regulate Bitcoin

Perspective

In terms of real, attributable numbers, though bitcoin appears stratospheric in the press, the truth is cryptocurrencies generally and bitcoin in particular are hardly dominating financial affairs. Crypto has a way to go yet.

This year, in fact, University of Cambridge Judge Business School released its Global Cryptocurrency Benchmarking Study. The 115 page report is an exhaustive snapshot of roughly where bitcoin was/is in 2016 as detailed by Cambridge Centre for
Alternative Finance.

Its findings include: between 2.9 and 5.8 million active wallet users; at least 1,876 people are working full-time in the cryptocurrency industry. And of course these numbers have jumped in 2017, but nothing on par with the scrutiny and negative press-coverage being heaped upon the ecosystem even if we assume ten-fold increases since.

Nevertheless, UK regulators are aiming specifically at the heart of bitcoin’s relative anonymity, according to Economic Secretary to the Treasury Stephen Barclay. “The UK government is currently negotiating amendments that will bring virtual currency exchange platforms and custodian wallet providers into Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorist Financing regulation, which will result in these firms’ activities being overseen by national competent authorities,” Mr. Barclay wrote.

What are your thoughts on the UK’s crackdown? Tell us in the comments! 


Images courtesy of: Pixabay, Facebook. 


Get our news feed on your site. Check our widget services.

The post UK Ministry of Treasury Plans to Regulate Bitcoin appeared first on Bitcoin News.

Bitcoin News

Venezuela Announces the Creation of Oil-Backed National Cryptocurrency – the Petro

December 4, 2017 |

Venezuela Announces the Creation of Oil-Backed National Cryptocurrency – the Petro

Venezuela’s president Nicolás Maduro has announced the creation of the country’s national cryptocurrency. It will be called the Petro and will be backed by the nation’s oil, gold, gas, and diamond reserves.

Also read: Japan Increases Lead – Approves Another Four New Cryptocurrency Exchanges

Venezuela’s National Cryptocurrency

Venezuela Announces the Creation of Oil-Backed National Cryptocurrency – the Petro
Venezuela’s president Nicolas Maduro.

The president of Venezuela, Nicolás Maduro, announced on Sunday that his country will create a national cryptocurrency called the Petro. Its goal is “to combat what the leftist leader says is a financial ‘blockade’ against the crisis-hit nation spurred by U.S. Sanctions,” Reuters reported.

Maduro explained that the new currency will be “backed by oil, gold, gas and diamond reserves,” Agencia Venezolana de Noticias wrote. He was quoted saying:

I want to announce that Venezuela is going to implement a new cryptocurrency system based on oil reserves, in order to advance in the area of monetary sovereignty. This will allow us to move towards new forms of international financing for the economic and social development of the country.

Following Maduro’s announcement, the Venezuelan finance ministry emphasized that a cryptocurrency system is necessary for carrying out financial transactions and for providing new financing options.

Venezuela Announces the Creation of Oil-Backed National Cryptocurrency – the PetroThe idea of creating a national cryptocurrency in Venezuela “was met with widespread scorn from Maduro’s foes who doubt that economically crippled Venezuela could pull off the launch of a cryptocurrency,” Reuters described.

“It’s Maduro being a clown. This has no credibility,” opposition lawmaker and economist Angel Alvarado told the news outlet. Opposition legislator Jose Guerra added, “I see no future in this.”

Venezuelans Turn to Bitcoin Mining

Venezuela’s fiat currency, the bolivar, has been in a free fall. It lost about 57 percent last month in the black market, dragging the country’s monthly minimum wage down to $ 4.30, the news outlet detailed. “Millions of Venezuelans plunged into poverty are struggling to eat three meals a day.”

Venezuela Announces the Creation of Oil-Backed National Cryptocurrency – the PetroOn Friday, the black market rate for one dollar is 103,000 bolivars; it was 10,000 at the end of July. According to the International Monetary Fund, Venezuela’s economy is shrinking 12 percent this year and its annual inflation rate is expected to surpass 2,300 percent next year.

The country’s hyperinflation has driven Venezuelans to bitcoin mining in order to afford basic necessities since power is heavily subsidized to the point that it is essentially free. Daniel Osorio of Andean Capital Advisors told CNBC in September that hyperinflation makes it impractical to use cash since dollars are in short supply in Venezuela. He elaborated, “we are beginning to see in Venezuela, potentially, the first bitcoinization of a sovereign state.”

Meanwhile, bitcoin mining and trading activities have grown in Venezuela. In May, news.Bitcoin.com reported that bitcoin helps Venezuelan families avoid starvation.

What do you think of Venezuela attempting to launch a national cryptocurrency? Let us know in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Reuters, and Tercera Información.


Need to calculate your bitcoin holdings? Check our tools section.

The post Venezuela Announces the Creation of Oil-Backed National Cryptocurrency – the Petro appeared first on Bitcoin News.

Bitcoin News