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| December 18, 2018

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CNN

Detention of 100 Christians raises concerns about religious crackdown in China

December 17, 2018 |

A prominent Chinese pastor and legal scholar is one of 100 Christians detained by authorities after he was reportedly arrested on allegations of “inciting subversion of state power.”
CNN.com – RSS Channel – World

The Daily: Trustology Raises $8 million, SEC Fines Crypto Fund Coinalpha

December 9, 2018 |

The Daily: Trustology Raises $  8 million, SEC Fines Crypto Fund Coinalpha

U.K.-based startup Trustology, which develops storage solutions for digital assets, has raised $ 8 million in funding and we’ve got the news in this edition of The Daily. We also look at the SEC’s decision to fine another crypto company for breaching U.S. securities laws and HTC’s decision to have Brave as the default web browser on its Exodus 1 smartphone.  

Also read: Binance Offers Multiple Accounts, Huobi Plans Institutional Exchange

Crypto Security Startup Raises $ 8 million

The Daily: Trustology Raises $  8 million, SEC Fines Crypto Fund CoinalphaLondon-headquartered crypto startup Trustology has received $ 8 million in seed funding in a round led by Two Sigma Ventures, Reuters reported. The company develops a technology that helps investors enhance the security of their digital assets. According to CEO Alex Batlin, Trustology plans to use the capital to expand globally and provide support for more cryptocurrencies.

The product offered by the British company is designed to secure crypto assets. It provides investors with a simple solution to safeguard the private keys that give them access to their cryptocurrencies – hardware security modules. These are specialized processors that store passwords and digital keys.

Alex Batlin noted that Trustology’s product had been initially designed for banks but the startup is currently focusing more on crypto hedge funds and individual investors. He commented:

The original thinking was we would build the tech and sell to the banks. They are not moving as quickly as we are and we have quite a lot of demand from individuals, as well as crypto funds.

According to Matt Jacobus, a venture partner at Two Sigma, similar solutions are needed to develop a larger trading ecosystem around digital assets for institutional investors. Blockchain technology developer Consensys also participated in the funding round.

SEC Fines Cryptocurrency Fund Coinalpha

The Daily: Trustology Raises $  8 million, SEC Fines Crypto Fund CoinalphaThe U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has gone after another crypto company that, according to the regulator, sells securities without registration. The SEC, which has determined that Coinalpha does not qualify for an exemption, has fined the cryptocurrency fund manager and issued a cease and desist order on Dec. 7, 2018.

The California-based Coinalpha Advisors, registered as a Delaware limited liability company, had been operating two digital asset funds – Coinalpha Falcon and Coinalpha Index, Finance Magnates reported. According to an announcement by the commission, the owners of the company have agreed to pay a civil money penalty of $ 50,000.

Coinalpha also agreed to halt its offerings and pay back the fees it had collected from customers. The digital asset fund has already raised more than $ 600,000 from 22 investors in five states. The company has also promised to conduct a review of its online platform and marketing materials.

Although the regulatory status of cryptocurrencies in the United States is still unclear, the SEC has already fined and issued cease and desist orders to a number of crypto businesses after concluding that securities laws apply to the tokens they were issuing.

Brave Is the Default Browser on HTC Exodus 1

Privacy-oriented web browser Brave, which supports opt-in ads and cryptocurrency payments between users, has been announced as the default browser on the new HTC Exodus 1 phone, according to posts on crypto forums and social media. The application supports a crypto tipping system which relies on Brave’s basic attention token (BAT) and enjoys growing popularity in the crypto community.

The Daily: Trustology Raises $  8 million, SEC Fines Crypto Fund Coinalpha

HTC has made its new smartphone available for buyers willing to pay in cryptocurrency. The device, which has been advertised as a blockchain-powered phone, can be purchased with three major digital coins. It has been offered at fixed prices in bitcoin core, ethereum and litecoin – 0.15 BTC, 4.78 ETH, and 19.84 LTC (around $ 500 at the time of writing). However, a message on HTC’s website reads “This product is currently out of stock.”

The news comes days after the launch of another blockchain smartphone called Finney, which has been developed by Sirin Labs. The device has an integrated cold storage cryptocurrency wallet and can be purchased on the company’s website for $ 999.

What are your thoughts on today’s news tidbits? Tell us in the comments section.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Trustology, HTC.


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). We’ve got daily, weekly and quarterly summaries in newsletter form. Bitcoin never sleeps. Neither do we.

The post The Daily: Trustology Raises $ 8 million, SEC Fines Crypto Fund Coinalpha appeared first on Bitcoin News.

Bitcoin News

Delta Air Lines raises drink prices, following a similar hike by American Airlines

December 8, 2018 |

Only two months after its biggest rival raised drink prices, Delta Air Lines quietly hiked what it charges for most onboard booze by $ 1.

That means that cocktails, imported and craft beer, liquor and wine are now priced at $ 9 a glass for economy-class passengers on domestic flights. The price of…


L.A. Times – Business

Case Raises Questions About Killing of Michael Jordan’s Dad

December 6, 2018 |

The 1993 murder jolted not just the sports world but the nation: James Jordan, the father of NBA phenom Michael Jordan, was fatally shot and dumped in a South Carolina swamp. Two teens, Larry Demery and Daniel Green, were convicted and are serving life sentences. Green, however, is now asking…
Newser

Venezuelans Remain Skeptical After President Maduro Raises Petro’s Value

December 6, 2018 |

Venezuela Orders Government Services to Accept Any Cryptocurrency

Nicolas Maduro’s move to increase the price of the petro, the country’s oil-backed cryptocurrency designed to counter inflation, has sparked intense debate. Experts and tech-savvy Venezuelans alike are less than enthusiastic about the Venezuelan president’s decision.

Also read: Maduro Orders Price of Venezuela’s ‘Cryptocurrency’ to More Than Double

Venezuelans Unimpressed by President’s Latest Proclamation

Venezuelans Remain Skeptical After President Maduro Raises Petro’s ValueVenezuelans have blasted President Nicolas Maduro and his new cryptocurrency after the leader of Venezuela upped the petro’s price last week. A number of Venezuelans and experts told news.Bitcoin.com that the idea of a petroleum-backed cryptocurrency was a bad idea from the start and that the government never truly had any idea what it was doing – with one even saying that it was just a trick to launder the government’s dirty money.

Last week, President Maduro said that the price of the petro, his country’s national “cryptocurrency,” had been increased from 3,600 sovereign bolivars to 9,000. The wallet for the petro is still unavailable but the Venezuelan government continues to sell the digital currency and issue certificates of purchase to buyers. But experts are skeptical on whether the cryptocurrency can even be trusted, and Venezuelans working in the field of technology have said they would never use it.

Fabian Camacho, a 28-year-old software developer and systems engineer now working in Colombia, said: “I wouldn’t plan to use [the petro] and I don’t believe the exchange houses use them in Venezuela – they prefer to buy dollars to resell them and play with the exchange rate that is handled here according to the price of the peso compared to the bolivar and the dollar.”

He added: “I don’t have faith in any ideas of the government and that [petro] crypto coin is one more move to steal more money.”

Venezuelan Expats Unenthusiastic

Tech business owner Gabriel De La Rosa, 28, who lives in Madrid, told news.Bitcoin.com he had living proof that no one in a position of power knows how the currency will work. “My sister worked directly with the country’s ombudsman,” he explained. “No one in the government had any idea about cryptocurrencies, or how to use them. No one knows how you can even link the price of petroleum with cryptocurrencies.” He continued:

No one, absolutely no one, has any idea how it will function. And no one will accept a currency that they don’t have confidence in. So really, it doesn’t have any value.

Another Venezuelan working in tech in Colombia, who wished to remain anonymous, told news.Bitcoin.com that the petro was 100 percent a scam – and that it was a good way for the government to launder money.

Venezuelans Remain Skeptical After President Maduro Raises Petro’s ValueVenezuela’s government has been accused of rampant corruption and even of operating as a “mafia state” by some, with criminals penetrating state institutions. Experts have also continued to criticize the crypto, saying it has no real use due to who is managing it.

Venezuelan economist and the director of Ecoanalitica, a Caracas-based economic research organization, told news.Bitcoin.com that the petro would “suffer the same fate as the bolivar,” the country’s worthless currency.

He said: “In the universe of crypto coins, the issue of trust is fundamental. In the case of the petro, the promoter is the Venezuelan government because it has the country in hyperinflation. I think it is a scam, it is a measure that doesn’t materialize, and many people don’t trust it. The government has been talking a lot about the petro as a cryptocurrency or as a unit of payment, but the truth is I don’t know that transactions are being made with it.” He added that Venezuelans have utilized other cryptocurrencies to get easy access to U.S. dollars.

Petro Wallet Still Not Ready

Senior market analyst at Etoro, Mati Greenspan, tweeted that “If the petro is tied to the price of oil, then the president can’t announce the exchange rate on television”, adding that it “isn’t a cryptocurrency.”

Launched in February, the petro is a plan to rescue crisis-stricken Venezuela, which is currently gripped by the world’s highest inflation, causing chronic food and medicine shortages. The currency is supposed to be backed by an area that holds five billion barrels of oil.

But the wallet for the petro is still unavailable to the public and the links to download it don’t work. In October, a new whitepaper for the cryptocurrency said that the petro is backed by 50 percent oil, 20 percent gold, 20 percent iron, and 10 percent diamond.

What are your thoughts on the petro? Let us know in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock.


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The post Venezuelans Remain Skeptical After President Maduro Raises Petro’s Value appeared first on Bitcoin News.

Bitcoin News

Disney Raises the Bar Robert Iger Has to Clear to Win Bonus

December 4, 2018 |

Walt Disney announced more-rigorous benchmarks required for CEO Robert Iger to collect a $ 100 million equity grant in 2021 that was criticized by shareholder advisory groups.
WSJ.com: US Business

CNN

Chinese gene-editing scientist defends research and raises possibility of third baby

November 28, 2018 |

The Chinese scientist who sparked an international outcry after alleging to have helped create the world’s first genetically edited babies, has raised the possibility of a third child being born, after announcing that a separate woman was pregnant at an early stage with a modified embryo.
CNN.com – RSS Channel – World

The Daily: Bitfinex Raises Fiat Withdrawal Fee, New Hardware Wallet Announced

November 26, 2018 |

The Daily: Bitfinex Raises Fiat Withdrawal Fee, New Hardware Wallet Announced

Crypto exchange Bitfinex has raised the minimum fee for fiat currency bank wire withdrawals and we’ve covered the details in The Daily. We also look at a San Diego-based company’s new hardware cryptocurrency wallet and the decision of one of Portugal’s leading football clubs to issue its own token.

Also read: US Defense Department Probes Blockchain, Singapore Approves 1X

Bitfinex Charges $ 60 for Bank Wire Withdrawals

The Daily: Bitfinex Raises Fiat Withdrawal Fee, New Hardware Wallet AnnouncedBitfinex has raised the minimum fee imposed on fiat withdrawals to bank accounts. The Hong Kong-based cryptocurrency exchange now charges at least $ 60/€60, or 0.1 percent of the withdrawn amount, Forklog reported. Users who want 24-hour money transfers on working days will have to pay a 1 percent fee.

The minimum withdrawal fee for fiat funds at Bitfinex used to be just $ 20. On Nov. 11, the exchange announced plans to charge a 3 percent fee on all external wire withdrawal requests exceeding certain frequency and size limits — more than two fiat withdrawals a month and more than $ 1 million in aggregate in fiat withdrawals in any 30-day period. The latest increase was not mentioned in the press release.

The Daily: Bitfinex Raises Fiat Withdrawal Fee, New Hardware Wallet Announced

Bitfinex is currently the fifth-largest digital asset trading platform by daily volume, according to data provided by Coinmarketcap. The exchange has estimated that the new fees will not affect what it called “regular withdrawals” by most of its customers.

FLX One Wallet Released

San Diego-based FLX Partnership Ltd. has announced the release of its latest cryptocurrency hardware wallet. FLX One supports 20 popular cryptocurrencies, including major coins such as BCH, BTC, LTC and ETH. The device comes with a built-in rechargeable battery and Bluetooth wireless functionality. Mobile apps for both iOS and Android systems are already available.

The Daily: Bitfinex Raises Fiat Withdrawal Fee, New Hardware Wallet AnnouncedAccording to the developers, FLX One has been designed with a number of security features. For example, it can disable communication automatically when signing transactions. The device also supports encrypted communication between each of its components. It is capable of detecting attempts to tamper with its software and can permanently lock itself.

The wallet is offered with a backup device, FLX Key, which can be used to restore account information in case the FLX One is damaged or lost. The press release details that the backup process is integrated within the initial setup — the FLX Key must be inserted into the hardware wallet and the FLX One system will automatically copy the important data.

Portuguese Football Team Mulls ICO

Sporting Lisbon, one of Portugal’s leading football clubs, has said it’s considering an initial coin offering (ICO). The team wants to issue its own token as an alternative way to raise funds, the local news outlet Dinheiro Vivo reported. Its management wants to take advantage of the opportunities that come with digital currencies, the publication noted.

The Daily: Bitfinex Raises Fiat Withdrawal Fee, New Hardware Wallet AnnouncedSporting Clube de Portugal is one of the oldest and most popular sports clubs in the country, best known for its football team. It now joins a growing number of soccer teams that have turned their attention to cryptocurrencies. In September, for example, the Paris Saint-Germain football club created a fan token. And earlier this year, Gibraltar United F.C., a team that competes in the British territory’s premier division, revealed it’s going to pay its players with digital coins.

In July, Portugal’s financial markets regulator advised companies planning to launch ICOs to consult with the relevant authorities before conducting token sales. Sporting Lisbon’s vice president, Salgado Zenha, told Dinheiro Vivo the club’s management is currently holding meetings to discuss a potential ICO. “We are looking closely at an ICO. There is a great potential for adding value to the Sporting brand,” Zenha commented.

What are your thoughts on today’s news tidbits? Tell us in the comments section.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock.


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). We’ve got daily, weekly and quarterly summaries in newsletter form. Bitcoin never sleeps. Neither do we.

The post The Daily: Bitfinex Raises Fiat Withdrawal Fee, New Hardware Wallet Announced appeared first on Bitcoin News.

Bitcoin News

Tech-driven stock market plunge raises worries that long rally is finally over

November 21, 2018 |

There may not be an alert on your iPhone yet, but it looks as if the years-long stock market party might just be over.

A recent plunge in share prices of U.S. technology giants spread like a software virus through the entire market Tuesday, triggering a broad sell-off that effectively wiped out…


L.A. Times – Business

The Daily: Okcoin-Backed Studio Raises $16M, Coinbase-Funded Game to Enter Beta

November 19, 2018 |

The Daily: Okcoin-Backed Studio Raises $  16M, Coinbase-Backed Game Releases Trailer

In today’s edition of The Daily, we focus on the intersection between the cryptocurrency industry and gaming. A game startup recently raised $ 16 million from investors such as Okcoin and Galaxy Digital, while the developers of a game backed by the investment arm of Coinbase have released a new gameplay trailer. And in related news, a recent report shows that young people prefer cryptocurrency and in-game coins over fiat cash.

Also Read: Venezuelan Department Store Chain Accepts Cryptocurrency

Mythical Games Secures $ 16M of Funding

Mythical Games, a new Los Angeles-headquartered game studio, announced on Friday that it has secured $ 16 million in a Series-A financing round. The funds will support the development and co-production of blockchain-powered games for mobile devices, PCs and consoles. The round was led by Galaxy Digital and included Okcoin, Javelin Venture Partners, Divergence Digital, Fenbushi and Noris.

The startup plans to provide its proprietary platform to other developers to help build “player-owned” economies. It will also produce tools for brands to monetize their game assets.

“We believe that gaming — and specifically players’ interaction with in-game economies and virtual goods — will play a key role in how the masses first discover the true potential of the blockchain,” said Mike Novogratz, CEO and Founder of Galaxy Digital. “Mythical’s experience building rich and immersive game worlds will be invaluable to this mission.”

The company was founded by former executives from Activision, Blizzard and Yahoo. They each previously led development teams for games such as “Call of Duty” and “World of Warcraft.”

“The investment from Galaxy, Javelin, and our other new investors will allow us to ignite a new approach to developing games, giving players and content creators a bigger stake in the games they love,” commented John Linden, co-founder and CEO of Mythical Games. “We believe these new economics will come to dominate gaming, resulting in an even bigger addressable market for the industry.”

On Saturday, Mythical Games revealed its first collectibles game, “Blankos Block Party.”

The Daily: Okcoin-Backed Studio Raises $  16M, Coinbase-Funded Game to Enter Beta

Fuel Games Releases ‘Gods Unchained’ Trailer

Fuel Games, another blockchain-powered game development company that was founded earlier this year, released an official gameplay trailer on Thursday for its upcoming title “Gods Unchained.” The startup raised $ 2.4 million in seed funding in May and is backed by Coinbase Ventures, Continue Capital, Sora Ventures and Nirvana Capital.

“Gods Unchained” is a competitive collectible trading card game, like a cross between “Magic: The Gathering,” “Hearthstone” and “Crypto Kitties.” Fuel Games also announced on Thursday that it will begin rolling out a closed beta of the game “over the next week or two.”

Teenagers Want Bitcoin for Christmas

The Daily: Okcoin-Backed Studio Raises $  16M, Coinbase-Funded Game to Enter BetaBeyond investments by cryptocurrency exchanges in blockchain-powered games, another connection between crypto and gaming is that young people tend to prefer in-game digital currencies over old fiat money. Piper Jaffray, an investment banking and asset management firm, on Wednesday published its “Holiday 2018” consumer report, which rates the gift preferences of American teenagers. The reports shows that for the first time ever, young people prefer cryptocurrency and “V-Bucks” as presents over fiat cash, gift cards and money for car-related expenses.

The V-Buck is the in-game currency of the battle royale game “Fortnite.” The wildly popular title has been raking in hundreds of millions of real-world dollars per month from the sale of in-game assets, despite being free to play. The game’s incredible commercial success is probably a major contributing factor to the recent increase in game-development funding, as many investors hope to capitalize on its popularity.

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


Images courtesy of Shutterstock.


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The post The Daily: Okcoin-Backed Studio Raises $ 16M, Coinbase-Funded Game to Enter Beta appeared first on Bitcoin News.

Bitcoin News