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Prince Philip ‘Voluntarily’ Gives Up His Driver’s License

February 9, 2019 |

Prince Philip will no longer be behind the wheel—at least not legally, the BBC reports. The 97-year-old duke, who was recently involved in a car crash , has “taken the decision to voluntarily” give up his driver’s license, says Buckingham Palace. “The duke is reported to have acknowledged that the…
Newser

Money Transmitter License Not Required for Crypto Businesses in Pennsylvania

January 23, 2019 |

Money Transmitter License Not Required for Crypto Businesses in Pennsylvania

On Wednesday, Jan. 23, the Pennsylvania Department of Banking and Securities (DoBS) published guidance for virtual currency businesses operating in the state. The state’s financial agency has decided a money transmission license for cryptocurrency operations is not required.

Also Read: Former Mt Gox CEO Reflects on Incarceration in Japan While Facing More Prison Time

Banking Department in Pennsylvania Declares Cryptocurrency Businesses Don’t Need a Money Transmitter License

Banking officials from the state of Pennsylvania have revealed that cryptocurrency business operators are not required to apply for a money transmission license. The DoBS has issued a statement concerning the state’s Money Transmitter Act (MTA) and guidance for virtual currency businesses explaining that bitcoin and other digital assets are not considered legal tender in the U.S. In fact, the Pennsylvania guidelines emphasize that thus far, there is no state in the country that has “designated virtual currency as legal tender.” Furthermore, the DoBS explains that it has received “multiple inquiries from entities” who were looking for further guidance toward money transmission laws and setting up a cryptocurrency operation.

“The DoBS will not be responding to these requests for guidance on a case-by-case basis, the DoBS is providing the following guidance on the applicability of the Money Transmission Business Licensing Law,” reads the banking department’s announcement.

Money Transmitter License Not Required for Crypto Businesses in Pennsylvania

Cryptocurrency Kiosks, ATMs, and Vending Machines Don’t Need a License

If the platform does not directly deal with handling fiat currency then a money transmission license is not needed. When a business operating in Pennsylvania solely transacts in virtual currency settlements then ultimately the platform is not engaged in the business of providing payment services or money transfer services. The DoBS also stated that operators of virtual currency kiosks, automated teller machines (ATMs), and vending machines have all attempted to contact the agency.

“In both the one-way and two-way Kiosk systems, there is no transfer of money to any third party — The user of the Kiosk merely exchanges fiat currency for virtual currency and vice versa, and there is no money transmission,” the DoBS MTA guidelines explain.

Thus, the entities operating the Kiosks would not be money transmitters under the MTA.

Regulatory Inconsistencies Across Several States and the Federal Government

Over the course of the past few years, U.S. officials have had a hard time reaching consensus when it comes to classifying bitcoin and other digital currencies. For instance, on Sept. 19, 2016, Federal Judge Alison Nathan from Manhattan ruled that “bitcoin is money.” Nathan detailed during the legal proceedings against Coin.mx exchange operator Anthony Murgio that “Bitcoins are funds within the plain meaning of that term — They, therefore, function as pecuniary resources and are used as a medium of exchange and a means of payment.” Virtual currency businesses in the state of New York have to apply for a money transmission license (Bitlicense) that is issued by the state’s financial regulators.

Money Transmitter License Not Required for Crypto Businesses in Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania’s Department of Banking and Securities (DoBS) guidelines section 1.

However, Miami-Dade’s Circuit Judge Teresa Mary Pooler tossed out anti-money-laundering charges against website designer Michell Espinoza and declared that “bitcoin was not money.” “It is very clear, even to someone with limited knowledge in the area, that Bitcoin has a long way to go before it [becomes] the equivalent of money,” Judge Pooler declared. Although the state of Florida’s prosecution agency filed an appeal against the decision to dismiss charges, the case took went on for years after Pooler’s verdict and the charges were eventually dropped.

So far the state of Pennsylvania seems to be in the same regulatory boat as Florida once was in 2016 but the sunshine state has since changed the regulatory guidelines since Judge Pooler’s decision. Back in May of 2017, House Bill 1379 passed in Florida, defining virtual currencies as a money transmission instrument and prohibiting money laundering by using virtual currency as a vehicle. Pennsylvania’s new rules may also run into issues with the federal government’s laws and how the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) classifies virtual currency operations as money transmitters. The DoBS money transmission laws in regard to cryptocurrency businesses have been discussed by Pennsylvania since 2016.

What do you think about Pennsylvania’s Department of Banking and Securities ruling on virtual currencies and the state’s money transmission laws? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.


Images via Shutterstock, and the DoBS of Pennsylvania.


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The post Money Transmitter License Not Required for Crypto Businesses in Pennsylvania appeared first on Bitcoin News.

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Digital Currency Platform Revolut Receives European Banking License

December 13, 2018 |

On Thursday, Dec. 13, digital payments platform Revolut announced that the company has been approved for a banking license in Europe by the region’s central bank. According to Revolut, the license will help it provide better access to digital currencies and also offer traditional banking services.

Also read: Google Trends Reveals One of the Top Questions of 2018 — ‘What Is Bitcoin?’

License Approved by the European Central Bank

Digital Currency Platform Revolut Receives European Banking LicenseRevolut is a UK-based digital currency company that allows people to purchase, sell, and store cryptocurrencies like bitcoin cash, ripple, ethereum, and others. Founded in 2015 by Nikolay Storonsky and Vlad Yatsenko, Revolut has raised $ 336 million since its inception. On Dec. 13 the team revealed it was approved by the European Central Bank for a banking license that allows the company to provide more financial services to customers. Revolut has explained that at first everything will be done “behind the scenes” so that the company will eventually be able to offer full current accounts, overdrafts, and other traditional financial services.

“If you choose to open a full current account with Revolut Bank in the future, any funds you deposit will be protected up to €100,000 under the European Deposit Insurance Scheme (EDIS),” Revolut’s blog announcement detailed.

Digital Currency Platform Revolut Receives European Banking License

Revolut Plans to Roll Out Overdraft Features and Personal Loans

Additionally, the Revolut team says customers will have access to overdraft facilities and this means users won’t have to worry about ‘insufficient funds’ notifications, automatic top-ups, and negative balances.

The company further emphasized:

The competitive personal loans we plan to offer will help out when your budget can’t cover a bigger purchase when you want to book that long-overdue holiday, or for anything else that requires a small cash injection before your next payday.

Digital Currency Platform Revolut Receives European Banking LicenseRevolut says it will start to experiment with the license in 2019 in Lithuania and hopes it can expand the services to other European regions after the testing. Furthermore, the license will give it the opportunity to provide U.K. direct debit payments. The British-based company also says that it is currently constructing its in-house payment processor. Revolut hopes to implement everything involved with the newly approved banking license over the next 18 months. According to the digital currency payment platform’s website, Revolut will additionally roll out services in the U.S. in the near future.

What do you think about the Revolut platform getting approved for a banking license in Europe? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.


Images via Shutterstock, Revolut, and Pixabay. 


At Bitcoin.com there’s a bunch of free helpful services. For instance, have you seen our Tools page? You can even look up the exchange rate for a transaction in the past. Or calculate the value of your current holdings. Or create a paper wallet. And much more.

The post Digital Currency Platform Revolut Receives European Banking License appeared first on Bitcoin News.

Bitcoin News

Australia’s Financial Regulator Grants License to Bitcoin Exchange Coinzoom

December 3, 2018 |

Coinzoom Australia said Dec. 3 that it has been officially registered as a digital currency exchange with financial watchdog Austrac. The registration allows the exchange to operate legally according to Australian law. It will also function as a fiat-to-crypto exchange, with support for a variety of digital assets, including the buying and selling of BTC, BCH and XRP.

Also read: Report: Bitcoin Mining Doesn’t Fuel Climate Change, it Benefits the Global Economy

Complying With KYC/AML Requirements

“Being fully registered … is an important step in our goal to provide globally compliant digital currency trading for both institutional and retail traders,” Todd Crosland, chief executive officer of Coinzoom, said in an online statement.

Australia’s Financial Regulator Grants License to Bitcoin Exchange Coinzoom

Austrac, as the Australian Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre is commonly known, is a state-run financial intelligence agency that monitors financial transactions for evidence of money laundering, organized crime, tax evasion, fraud and terrorism. At press time, the regulator had not responded to a request for comment.

When Coinzoom Australia launches in the first quarter of 2019, traders will be expected to “fully” comply with the know-your-customer and anti-money laundering requirements of both the Australian and U.S. financial regulators, said Crosland.

The unit of U.S.-based Coinzoom Inc. claims that the platform, which caters to local and international investors, “will provide a simple and easy one-stop user experience to link their credit card, bank account and cryptocurrency wallets.” It adds that Coinzoom “also offers customers a pattern recognition system, rewards debit card, and social trading capabilities.”

Australia’s Financial Regulator Grants License to Bitcoin Exchange Coinzoom
Todd Crosland

Coinzoom Inc. describes itself as “an institutional grade digital currency-trading platform” that supports the trade of virtual currencies such as bitcoin, bitcoin cash, ripple and ether. The company claims it is registered as a money services business in all 50 U.S. states. It says it is also in the process of acquiring remittances licenses in states where they are required and has already secured them in states such as Florida, Iowa and Maryland. The remittances licenses allow Coinzoom to transfer funds or offer crypto-based payment services.

Cryptocurrency Hub

Australia aims to become a cryptocurrency leader. In September, Travelbybit, a Brisbane-based startup, revealed that it had received state funding to enable it to transform the city into a cryptocurrency hub. The company says it will use the funds to develop technologies that allow visitors to Brisbane to pay for their travel expenses in virtual currencies such as bitcoin or bitcoin cash.

Australia’s Financial Regulator Grants License to Bitcoin Exchange Coinzoom

In June, Agnes Water — a coastal town in the Australian state of Queensland — claimed it had become the country’s “first digital currency town,” where transactions and payments are denominated in crypto. And a recent survey by Hiveex and Ivypay indicated that about 2.58 million Australians now own cryptocurrencies of some form, with more than 2,500 bills paid in virtual currencies in the country every month.

“Coinzoom’s vision is to provide global cryptocurrency traders with innovative trading technology, and world-class digital asset security, all while following the U.S. and global regulatory requirements,” said Crosland.

What do you think about KYC/AML requirements as a precondition for cryptocurrency trading? Let us know in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock and Coinzoom.


Express yourself freely at Bitcoin.com’s user forums. We don’t censor on political grounds. Check forum.Bitcoin.com.

The post Australia’s Financial Regulator Grants License to Bitcoin Exchange Coinzoom appeared first on Bitcoin News.

Bitcoin News

Chinese Startup Gets Crypto Custodial Services License in Hong Kong

November 26, 2018 |

Chinese Startup Gets Crypto Custodial Services License in Hong Kong

Cryptocurrency custodians are third parties that store large amounts of digital assets for institutions, hedge funds, exchanges and issuers of initial coin offerings. Companies in Hong Kong now have a new locally regulated option, which could help to increase investor confidence.

Also Read: You Can Now Withdraw Split BCH and BSV Coins From Coinex

Keep Your Holdings In a Vault at Invault

Chinese Startup Gets Crypto Custodial Services License in Hong KongInvault, a Shanghai-based startup, has secured a new trust license from the Hong Kong financial regulator to act as a digital custodian in the Chinese special administrative region. It plans to begin offering automated cryptocurrency custodial services in December. It is also said to be in talks with a couple of “mid-sized” insurance companies to possibly add their coverage to its services.

The Securities and Futures Commission of Hong Kong recently introduced a new regulatory framework for the local cryptocurrency industry, including exchanges, asset portfolio managers, intermediaries and fund distributors. Among other requirements, licensed asset fund mangers need to choose to keep clients’ funds at a custodian, an exchange or in cold storage. This is the niche Invault is now stepping into, storing the private keys for clients’ wallets in a physical vault.

Storing 1 Million ETH in Mainland China

Chinese Startup Gets Crypto Custodial Services License in Hong KongInvault is backed by venture capital fund Matrix Partners China, which contributed $ 5.85 million in seed funding earlier this year. The startup reportedly already has a staff of over 40 in Shanghai and holds 1 million ETH under custody for mainland Chinese clients.

“We believe that globally, custodians for cryptocurrency assets will be regulated and operated under a trust license,” Invault founder and CEO Kenneth Xu told the South China Morning Post. He also predicts that most of the demand for institutional custodian services in Asia will come from Hong Kong and Singapore.

Last month the New York State Department of Financial Services granted a license to a subsidiary of Coinbase to operate as an independent qualified custodian for six cryptocurrencies. And earlier this year financial analysts warned that a lack of institutional custodians is a significant barrier to investment in the field.

Would cryptocurrency users feel safer to work with companies that keep their holdings with a custodian? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock.


Verify and track bitcoin cash transactions on our BCH Block Explorer, the best of its kind anywhere in the world. Also, keep up with your holdings, BCH and other coins, on our market charts at Satoshi’s Pulse, another original and free service from Bitcoin.com.

The post Chinese Startup Gets Crypto Custodial Services License in Hong Kong appeared first on Bitcoin News.

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German teen loses driving license just 49 minutes after passing driving test

November 21, 2018 |

German police said a teenager managed to lose his driving license in just 49 minutes after acquiring it.
FOX News

Teen Gets License, Loses It 49 Minutes Later

November 21, 2018 |

In what’s sure to be some kind of record, a teen in Germany managed to lose his driver’s license a whopping 49 minutes after getting it. Traveling with four friends he might’ve been trying to impress, the 18-year-old was returning from his successful driving test when he was allegedly clocked…
Newser

Seba Crypto Expects Swiss Banking License, Independent Reserve Integrates Tax Tool

November 15, 2018 |

Seba Crypto Expects Swiss License, Independent Reserve Integrates Tax Tool

In recent exchange news, Seba Crypto AG has predicted that it will receive a Swiss banking license within the first half of 2019. We also look at the Independent Reserve, which has integrated a tax estimator tool into its user interface, as well as Point95 Global, which has announced plans to launch a “crypto quantitative fund” based in the Cayman Islands.

Also Read: Bitfinex Introduces Fees, Bitmex Rejects Claims It Trades Against Customers

‘Crypto Bank’ Aims to Secure License in 2019

Seba Crypto Expects Swiss License, Independent Reserve Integrates Tax ToolGuido Bühler, the chief executive officer of Seba Crypto, has predicted that the company — which recently raised $ 103 million to launch a so-called “crypto-bank” — will receive a banking and securities dealer license from the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA) before the end of the second quarter of 2019.

Bühler indicated that Seba Crypto already sees significant demand from major financial institutions. He claimed that “five large asset managers from Germany and abroad have already made representations to [Seba Crypto].”

Australian Exchange Integrates Crypto Tax Estimator

Independent Reserve, an Australian cryptocurrency exchange, has announced the launch of a tax estimator developed by KPMG. The tool will allow the exchange’s users to estimate the tax obligations of their portfolios from its user interface.

Seba Expects Swiss License, Independent Reserve Integrates Tax ToolAdrian Przelozny, the chief executive officer of Independent Reserve, described the tool as “a piece of critical infrastructure that will help our users understand and help manage their risk.”

Laszlo Peter, head of blockchain services at KPMG Australia, emphasized the need for cryptocurrency traders to diligently observe their tax obligations. “The possibility of being non-compliant is a major source of legal risk,” Peter said. “We want to provide an easy-to-use tool that may assist participants in the newly emerging token-based economy to understand their tax obligations.”

Point95 Global to Launch ‘Crypto Quantitative Fund’

Seba Expects Swiss License, Independent Reserve Integrates Tax ToolPoint95 Global, a Shanghai-based digital asset management firm, has announced plans to launch a “crypto quantitative fund” in partnership with an unnamed asset manager in Hong Kong. The fund, to be domiciled in the Cayman Islands, will target professional investors and will use algorithms to capitalize on arbitrage opportunities across various crypto-asset markets.

Point95 Global claims to already be using these strategies to trade the top 10 cryptocurrencies by capitalization. It has put forward $ 3 million in seed capital, with the initial size of the fund expected to be $ 30 million.

Ye Jingyuan, the co-founder and chairman of Point95 Global — as well as the former vice-president of the global markets division of Bank of America Merrill Lynch in London — expects to launch the fund before 2019. He stated that the company is “aspiring to be one of the first crypto quantitative fund platforms that are compliant with the Hong Kong securities regulations, by operating with the right licenses.”

Do you think there is demand for financial institutions offering cryptocurrency-related services? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!


Images courtesy of Shutterstock


At Bitcoin.com there’s a bunch of free helpful services. For instance, have you seen our Tools page? You can even lookup the exchange rate for a transaction in the past. Or calculate the value of your current holdings. Or create a paper wallet. And much more.

The post Seba Crypto Expects Swiss Banking License, Independent Reserve Integrates Tax Tool appeared first on Bitcoin News.

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The Daily: US Museum to Accept Bitcoin, Estonia Grants License to B2BX Exchange

November 12, 2018 |

The Daily: US Museum to Accept Bitcoin, Estonia Grants License to B2BX Exchange

In today’s edition of The Daily, we report on the latest U.S. museum to open up to cryptocurrency payments, as well as several new lawsuits that have been filed over simjacking. Additionally, the government of Estonia has granted a license to B2BX Exchange, which will allow the company to attract traders from across Europe.

Also Read: Lawyer Invests $ 300 Million to Build Crypto City in the Nevada Desert

Science Museum to Take Bitcoin Payments

The Daily: US Museum to Accept Bitcoin, Estonia Grants License to B2BX ExchangeGreat Lakes Science Center, an engineering and technology museum in Cleveland, Ohio, has told local media outlets that it will begin accepting cryptocurrency payments on Nov. 13. The educational center is integrating Bitpay into its payments system for ticket sales ahead of a blockchain conference that will be held at the facility in December.

“Accepting bitcoin is just a small part of the momentum to grow a blockchain ecosystem in Cleveland,” stated Kirsten Ellenbogen, president and CEO of Great Lakes Science Center. “Last year we launched our mobile app that uses augmented and virtual reality to allow guests to experiment with flames in space and test spacecraft designs re-entering Earth’s atmosphere when they visit the NASA Glenn Visitor Center, and now they’ll be able to use their phone to pay for their admission using Bitcoin.”

Estonia Grants License to B2BX Exchange

The Daily: US Museum to Accept Bitcoin, Estonia Grants License to B2BX ExchangeB2BX Exchange, a cryptocurrency exchange developed by forex solutions provider B2broker, announced today that it has received approval for a regulatory license from the Estonian Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU). The company explained that it applied for a license in Estonia due to the country’s track record of openness to new technologies. Under the regulations the exchange will be expected to follow strict KYC procedures, but in return users will get increased daily limits on deposits and withdrawals, as well as access to fiat currencies via bank transfers and major payments providers.

“I have long been a proponent of regulation which I believe will promote further the adoption of cryptocurrency usage and cryptocurrency trading,” commented Arthur Azizov, CEO and founder of B2broker. “Our users will be able to benefit from an enhanced level of protection, safe in the knowledge that they are dealing with a world-leading, regulated cryptocurrency exchange.”

The Daily: US Museum to Accept Bitcoin, Estonia Grants License to B2BX Exchange

Florida Law Firm Files Simjacking Lawsuits

The Daily: US Museum to Accept Bitcoin, Estonia Grants License to B2BX ExchangeSilver Miller, a Florida-headquartered law firm, said on Thursday that it recently filed a number of arbitration claims against both AT&T and T-Mobile on behalf of cryptocurrency holders who have fallen victim to simjacking. The firm revealed it already represents one AT&T client who was robbed of more than $ 600,000 in cryptocurrency, as well as two T-Mobile clients who respectively lost $ 400,000 and $ 250,000 in cryptocurrency due to simjacking.

“By leaving holes in their security protocols and failing to properly train and monitor their employees, cellphone providers have assisted thieves in remotely taking over the SIM cards in people’s smartphones,” the law firm explained. It also called on anyone else who has been a victim of simjacking to join its legal efforts against the phone companies that enabled it.

What do you think about today’s news tidbits? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock.


Verify and track bitcoin cash transactions on our BCH Block Explorer, the best of its kind anywhere in the world. Also, keep up with your holdings, BCH and other coins, on our market charts at Satoshi’s Pulse, another original and free service from Bitcoin.com.

The post The Daily: US Museum to Accept Bitcoin, Estonia Grants License to B2BX Exchange appeared first on Bitcoin News.

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