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| November 20, 2018

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If Trump slaps tariffs on more Chinese goods, U.S. shoppers will pay the price

September 14, 2018 |

President Trump’s threat to ramp up tariffs on Chinese imports takes direct aim at American consumers, who face the prospect of higher prices for thousands of Chinese goods from frozen fish sticks to vacuum cleaners.

Shoppers could start seeing price increases on perishable Chinese food imports,…


L.A. Times – Business

China Slaps New Tariffs on 128 US Products

April 2, 2018 |

China has made good on its threat to retaliate for President Trump’s new tariffs on steel and aluminum. Beijing says it is slapping new tariffs on 128 kinds of American products, including pork, wine, and numerous kids of fruit, “in order to safeguard China’s interests and balance the losses caused…
Newser

CNN

State Department slaps 5 Mexican states with ‘do not travel’ advisory

January 11, 2018 |

Mexico — long a destination for world-class museums, archeological sites and beach resorts — now has five states tagged with the most severe travel warning by the US State Department.
CNN.com – RSS Channel – Regions – Americas

Complaint Filed vs. Ex-Trump Aide for ‘Demeaning’ Butt Slaps

December 27, 2017 |

A singer and potential congressional candidate says she has filed a sexual assault complaint against President Trump’s ex-campaign manager for hitting her twice on her buttocks during a DC gathering in November. Joy Villa, a Trump backer who wore a “Make America Great Again” dress at the Grammys this year,…
Newser

Korean Authority Slaps Exchanges With Licensing Requirements

December 22, 2017 |

Korean Authority Slaps Exchanges With Licensing Requirements

The South Korean government is conducting on-site inspections of crypto exchanges following the release of its emergency measures for cryptocurrency regulation. The regulators have also notified the country’s largest exchanges that they are subject to the Information Security Management System certification requirements.

Also read: South Korea Clarifies Position After Reports of Possible Ban on All Crypto Transactions

On-Site Inspections of 13 Exchanges

The South Korean Office for Government Policy Coordination and Prime Minister’s Secretariat issued an announcement on Wednesday to follow up on the emergency cryptocurrency measures unveiled last week.

Korean Authority Slaps Exchanges With Licensing RequirementsOn December 20, the Korean Fair Trade Commission (FTC) began carrying out “on-site inspections for violations of consumer laws, such as electronic commerce laws and contract laws, at virtual currency exchanges for three days,” the Office wrote.

The “target of the investigation,” the government elaborated, is “the 13 major virtual currency exchanges operating in Korea and reporting as telecom vendors under the E-Commerce Act.” They include Bithumb, Coinone, and Korbit. Among other factors, the Commission will “check whether there is any unfairness among the terms and conditions used by the business operators” and take action in accordance with relevant laws and regulations.

Furthermore, the government stated that their previous inspections of crypto exchanges revealed:

As a result of conducting on-site inspections on the major virtual currency exchanges, most of the inspected companies (10 companies) demonstrated administrative and technical security procedures such as the installation and operation of access control devices and encryption measures of personal information. Overall, the measures were found to be inadequate.

4 Exchanges Subject to Licensing Requirements

The government also revealed that the Ministry of Science and Technology announced on Wednesday that the country’s top 4 exchanges, Bithumb, Coinone, Korbit, and Upbit, are subject to the 2018 Information Security Management System (ISMS) certification requirements.

Korean Authority Conducts On-Site Inspections of 13 Crypto Exchanges, Slapping 4 With Licensing Requirements“ISMS is a system that certifies that the information protection system of companies with annual revenue of more than 10 billion won and average daily visitor of over 1 million is appropriate,” Hankyung explained.

Small and medium-sized exchanges are excluded from the ISMS certification obligation, the government explained. For these exchanges, the Korea Communications Commission (KCC) will be responsible, strengthening the protection of personal information. The Commission will also strictly enforce punitive fines and penalties for exchanges that violate related laws.

The announcement also warns the public of the risks of cryptocurrency investing. Citing the bankruptcy filing of the crypto exchange Youbit, the government asserted, “it is necessary to pay special attention to the risk of virtual currency speculation and to be vigilant about virtual currency trading participation.”

What do you think of the government’s on-site inspections of crypto exchanges and the licensing requirements? Let us know in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, KCC, Korea FTC, and Business Korea.


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The post Korean Authority Slaps Exchanges With Licensing Requirements appeared first on Bitcoin News.

Bitcoin News

Bitfinex Slaps a Lawsuit on Its Nemesis as the Tether Squabble Gets Ugly

December 5, 2017 |

Bitfinex Slaps a Lawsuit on Its Nemesis as the Tether Squabble Gets Ugly

Bitfinex has come out fighting after weeks of being on the backfoot. The bitcoin exchange, which has parried stinging accusations from the anonymous critic Bitfinex’ed, has had enough and called in the high-priced lawyers. Steptoe & Johnson is the company tasked with tracking down anyone perceived to have libeled the Hong Kong-based exchange – and it’s got one particular Twitter account firmly in its sights.

Also read: Bitfinex Faces Further Scrutiny Over Tether Liquidity Concerns

Bitfinex v Bitfinex’ed

Bitfinex Slaps a Lawsuit on Its Nemesis as the Tether Squabble Gets Ugly
The Twitter avi for Bitfinex’ed.

Amidst mounting questions as to the solvency of Bitfinex and accusations of wash trading using tethers – tokens pegged against the U.S. dollar – the twittersphere has had a field day. Much of the speculation has been spearheaded by Bitfinex’ed, an account which has been a constant thorn in the side of the world’s largest bitcoin exchange.

It’s now been suggested by Bitfinex – and confirmed by its nemesis – that Bitfinex’ed is facing a lawsuit. Stuart Hoegner, legal counsel for Bitfinex, released a statement saying:

To date, every claim made by these bad actors has been patently false and made simply to agitate the cryptocurrency ecosystem. As a result, Bitfinex has decided to assert all of its legal rights and remedies against these agitators and their associates.

This was followed up with a PR blitz in which one of the exchange’s partners posted an op-ed conceding that Bitfinex has been poor at communication. The piece makes comparisons between the cannabis and cryptocurrency industries in terms of the difficulty of obtaining banking arrangements, before taking aim at Bitfinex’ed, stating, perhaps disingenuously:

An anonymous online Twitter user who throws allegations around without ever revealing his or her own identity. As a communications professional myself, I know that whenever someone tosses allegations and attacks behind the veil of anonymity, one has to examine their motives.

Bitfinex Slaps a Lawsuit on Its Nemesis as the Tether Squabble Gets UglyThere are very valid reasons why an individual such as Bitfinex’ed may wish to preserve their anonymity. Nevertheless, regardless of the merits of both parties’ case, the fact is that the gloves are now off. In its statement announcing the hiring of Steptoe & Johnson, Bitfinex said: “In recent months, certain parties and their associates have made false and unsubstantiated claims against Bitfinex, engaging in potential market manipulation activity that is dishonest and unlawful.”

Readers who have been following the long-running spat will be aware that these are the very same accusations that Bitfinex’ed has leveled against Bitfinex.

So What Happens Now?

Bitfinex’ed has launched a donation address to help fund its defense of the lawsuit it’s facing. It currently contains around 1.4 BTC, 1 BTC of which came from a single donor.

Bitfinex Slaps a Lawsuit on Its Nemesis as the Tether Squabble Gets Ugly

In all likelihood, the case will never come to pass for a variety of reasons. Libel or slander cases are notoriously difficult to prove, especially when the alleged defamatory comments were made on a platform such as Twitter which is largely protected by free speech amendments. Even if Bitfinex were to successfully take its nemesis to court, it would need to lay bare its own operations to prove the accusations to be false.

Bitfinex Slaps a Lawsuit on Its Nemesis as the Tether Squabble Gets Ugly
British comedy duo Steptoe & Son. Not to be confused with Bitfinex lawyers Steptoe & Johnson.

The company also has nack for filing and then retracting lawsuits, having done similar against Wells Fargo earlier this year. Some commenters see the hiring of Steptoe & Johnson as evidence of Bitfinex trying to deter mainstream media outlets – which have greater legal obligations than anonymous social media commenters – from investigating its dealings.

There is a case for saying that the lawsuit – regardless of whether it transpires – suits both parties. Bitfinex can silence future dissenters who may be tempted to emulate Bitfinex’ed and start slinging mud. Bitfinex’ed, in return, can portray itself as the victim of a witch hunt whilst boosting its bitcoin balance. Regardless of how this case plays out, one thing that seems further away than ever is the truth. Until Bitfinex publishes the long-overdue audit of its accounts, speculation will continue.

Do you think Bitfinex will follow through with their supposed lawsuit against Bitfinex’ed? Let us know in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock.


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The post Bitfinex Slaps a Lawsuit on Its Nemesis as the Tether Squabble Gets Ugly appeared first on Bitcoin News.

Bitcoin News

Producers Guild Slaps Weinstein With Lifetime Ban

October 31, 2017 |

Harvey Weinstein has been banned for life from the producers guild. The Producers Guild of America announced Monday that Weinstein had resigned his membership, and the group opted to impose a lifetime ban on him, the AP reports. The guild called it an unprecedented step. The guild’s board of directors…
Newser

Covered California slaps a surcharge on health plans as Trump remains coy on subsidies

October 11, 2017 |

California’s health insurance exchange said Wednesday it has ordered insurers to add a surcharge to certain policies next year because the Trump administration has yet to commit to paying a key set of consumer subsidies under the Affordable Care Act.

The decision to impose a 12.4% surcharge on…


L.A. Times – Business