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What is Bitcoin?

Bitcoin is a digital crypto-currency with no single point of failure due to its decentralized peer-to-peer architecture. The source code is publicly available and changes to the reference Bitcoin client are made via concensus within the community. Advantages of Bitcoin include irreversible transactions (i.e. no possibility of chargebacks as with credit cards), pseudo-anonymous, limited and fixed inflation, near instant transactions, multi-platform, no double-spend and little to no barriers to entry and more. It was created by an anonymous person known as Satoshi Nakamoto. Find out more at WeUseCoins.com.

Bitcoin Latest News

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Posted on 21 September 2018 | 3:46 am

Venezuela to Adopt Controversial Petro Token in Global Trade

Venezuela's president is ordering the use of the petro in international trade, despite doubts the token will be widely accepted.

Posted on 21 September 2018 | 3:30 am

Why Ripple is said to be the next Bitcoin - TNW


TNW

Why Ripple is said to be the next Bitcoin
TNW
The rise of Bitcoin made some early investors very rich. For instance, anyone who purchased Bitcoin a few years ago at a few dollars has a success story to tell. Currently, the value of Bitcoin is approximately $6,553. However, they had to wait for ...
Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple, Bitcoin Cash, EOS, Stellar, Litecoin, Cardano, Monero, IOTA: Price Analysis, September 19Cointelegraph
Bitcoin Price Watch: BTC/USD Preparing for Next Upside WavenewsBTC
Weiss Ratings Backtracks After Tipping Ethereum to Beat BitcoinBitcoin News (press release)
CCN -Ethereum World News (blog) -Hacked
all 172 news articles »

Posted on 21 September 2018 | 2:27 am

California Bans Bitcoin Donations in Political Campaigns

Candidates for public office in California may not receive donations in cryptocurrency, the state's political watchdog has ruled.

Posted on 21 September 2018 | 2:00 am

Bitcoin Bounce Back? Former Hedge Fund Manager Makes Massive Prediction - Forbes


Forbes

Bitcoin Bounce Back? Former Hedge Fund Manager Makes Massive Prediction
Forbes
Bitcoin and other major cryptocurrencies could have turned a corner after a bruising nine months that has seen bitcoin lose some 60% of its value, while the likes of ethereum, ripple, bitcoin cash, EOS, and litecoin have seen even bigger declines. That ...
Michael Novogratz: Pot stocks feel like bitcoin last year - CNBC.comCNBC
Investor swears bitcoin will 'grind back'New York Post
Cryptocurrency has hit bottom, bitcoin due for renaissance ... - ReutersReuters
Cointelegraph -Express.co.uk -The Indian Express
all 51 news articles »

Posted on 21 September 2018 | 12:58 am

'Turbo Geth' Seeks to Scale Ethereum – And It's Already in Beta

Instead of tackling ethereum's transaction costs, developer Alexey Akhunov focused on the blockchain's state, and the software is ready.

Posted on 20 September 2018 | 10:00 pm

Bitfury Launches New Generation of ASIC-Based Bitcoin Mining ... - Cointelegraph


Cointelegraph

Bitfury Launches New Generation of ASIC-Based Bitcoin Mining ...
Cointelegraph
Bitcoin tech company Bitfury has released a new generation of ASIC Bitcoin mining hardware, and plans to integrate it into its other mining products.
Just a Cycle? Big Bitcoin Miners Stay Positive in Face of Market SlumpCoinDesk
Bitfury Launches New Suite of Bitcoin Mining Hardware - MediumMedium

all 16 news articles »

Posted on 20 September 2018 | 8:32 pm

Bitcoin Traders Should Watch $5600 And $8900 - Forbes


Forbes

Bitcoin Traders Should Watch $5600 And $8900
Forbes
“Something I found interesting is that the average of Hayes' and Wheatley's models is beginning to converge closer to Bitcoin's actual price,” says Greg Giordano, my co-author of a research paper on Bitcoin prices. “The average of Hayes' and Wheatley's ...

Posted on 20 September 2018 | 6:17 pm

Bitcoin ETFs Delayed Again as SEC Seeks Comment on Fund Proposal - Bloomberg


Bloomberg

Bitcoin ETFs Delayed Again as SEC Seeks Comment on Fund Proposal
Bloomberg
The wait for an exchange-traded fund that invests in Bitcoin likely continues with U.S. regulator seeking comments on a listing request. Despite already receiving more than 1,400 comment letters on a proposal to list an ETF from Van Eck Securities Corp ...
US SEC Asks for Further Comment Regarding VanEck Bitcoin ETFCointelegraph
SEC Moves to Make Decision on VanEck-SolidX Bitcoin ETF ...CoinDesk
Again?! SEC Postpones Decision on CBOE Application to list Bitcoin ETFFinance Magnates
CCN -Bitcoinist -Seeking Alpha -SEC.gov
all 40 news articles »

Posted on 20 September 2018 | 4:17 pm

Newest Crypto Exchange Offers Multiple Currencies Via One Book

BTSE Exchange

The crypto world is welcoming its newest digital currency exchange. Known as BTSE, it’s a platform designed primarily to look after markets and OTC trading. The system is unique in the sense that it offers multiple currencies through one book, and entities like the U.S. dollar, the euro and the Japanese yen all share the same liquidity pool.

Co-founder Jack Li spoke with Bitcoin Magazine about how the exchange works and what its overall purpose is in offering a multi-currency platform.

“Even though there has been some consolidation amongst the existing exchanges, the industry is still largely fragmented and localized,” he commented. “Our goal in offering a multi-currency platform looks to address some of these issues through the aggregation of liquidity.”

Upon registering with BTSE, a user can select their base currency from a list of 18, which includes USD, EUR, KRW, MYR, PHP and many others. Users can then transfer any currency to the platform or trade in their base currency for crypto, while all liquidity is sourced from the same USD orderbook.

“Other exchanges that offer multiple books often struggle with liquidity in their secondary books,” Li stated. “This innovation aims to resolve that issue. If a deposit is sent in a currency we do not yet support, it will automatically be covered at system rate.”

BTSE also has a marketplace where verified merchants can offer their services and users can choose to engage directly. Li says this provides faster turnaround times for deposits and withdrawals while empowering users with greater flexibility. Users can also engage in bilateral transactions amongst themselves.

“At launch, we aim to offer a fully escrowed DVP [delivery versus payment] functionality where users can determine the terms of their transactions (prices, quantities, types of assets or currencies, etc.), and we’ll take care of the settlement within our highly encrypted and trusted environment,” Li said.

At press time, the company is in the process of applying for a VFAA (Virtual Financial Assets Act) class 4 cryptocurrency exchange license from the Republic of Malta and has already received principle approval to operate within their sandbox environment. Furthermore, BTSE has been granted a general commercial trading license and a payment services provider license from the Dubai government in the United Arab Emirates.

“As a platform tailored towards fulfilling the needs of professional traders and institutional investors, usability and reliability are at the core of BTSE’s ethos,” Li said. “Some of the features you will find on our platform include hidden orders, index pegged orders, and of course, our very own BTSE 5 (core coin), BTSE 10 (altcoin), and the BTSE Single Token indexes, which cover prices for currencies like bitcoin, ether, bitcoin cash and litecoin. In the future, we also plan to offer full-fledged capital market services, as well as structured products once the relevant licenses are in place.”

BTSE 5 is an index covering the values of the top five largest cryptocurrencies, while the BTSE 10 index does the same for the industry’s top 10 performing altcoins.


This article originally appeared on Bitcoin Magazine.

Posted on 20 September 2018 | 3:05 pm

In First Half of 2018, Japan Counts $540 Million Lost to Crypto Thefts

Japan Crypto Theft

When Tokyo-based Mt. Gox got hacked to the tune of 650,000 bitcoin in 2014, Japan learned early on the tough lessons of cryptocurrency theft. Yet, to this day, despite the country’s ongoing efforts to educate investors and ramp up oversight of crypto exchanges, it still feels the sting of hackers.

On September 20, 2018, on the heels of the Osaka-based Zaif heist, which amounted to $60 million in losses, the country’s National Police Agency (NPA) issued a report of cryptocurrency thefts involving exchanges and individual crypto wallets for the first half of 2018. Japanese news outlet Asahi Shimbun was the first to report on the information.

According to police authorities, during the first six months of 2018, cyber thieves made off with a startling $540 million (60.503 billion yen) in cryptocurrency. Of the stolen money, $58 million came from exchanges, while the remaining $22 million was taken from individual crypto wallets.

During this time period, there were 158 instances of theft — triple the number for the same period last year. In fact, the entirety of 2017 saw 149 breaches, amounting to losses of only $6 million.

NEM coin accounted for the share of the hacked funds, with the majority being taken in the Coincheck breach earlier this year. Bitcoin losses of $7.66 million resulted from 94 breaches. Ripple (XRP) accounted for $13.5 million of the losses and 42 instances of theft.

Finally, 14 cases of theft involved ether, the native cryptocurrency of the Ethereum platform, totalling losses of about $542,000.

Sixty percent (102 incidences) of the 158 total reported incidences were due to individuals using the same ID and password for their cryptocurrency accounts as they did for email and online shopping — a no-no for anyone trying to safeguard online assets.

Lessons were learned in the Coincheck heist. After the rattling event, Japan’s financial watchdog, the Financial Services Agency (FSA) kicked up efforts to bring exchange operators in line with newer security measures, brought on by laws that went into effect in April 2017.

Between January 2018 and March 2018, 76 percent (120 cases) of crypto thefts were reported. After that, due in part to the NPA encouraging people to use better passwords, the number of crypto thefts dropped. And between April 2018 and June 2018, only 38 cases were reported.

Tech Bureau Corp, the company that operates Zaif cryptocurrency exchange, received two warnings from the NSA this year for its lax security measures and is likely to receive another, as regulators do their utmost to reduce cryptocurrency losses in the country.


This article originally appeared on Bitcoin Magazine.

Posted on 20 September 2018 | 2:45 pm

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SEC Moves to Make Decision on VanEck-SolidX Bitcoin ETF Proposal

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is now weighing whether to approve the nation's first bitcoin-based exchange-traded fund.

Posted on 20 September 2018 | 2:43 pm

Congressional Committee Calls for Clearer Crypto Tax Code in Letter to IRS

IRS letter

In an open letter to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), the U.S. House’s Committee on Ways and Means argues that the tax collection body is leaving investors in the lurch with its vague cryptocurrency tax codes.

Authored by congressional representatives Kevin Brady, Lynn Jenkins, Darin LaHood, David Schweikert and Brad Wenstrup, the letter, addressed to Acting Commissioner David Kautter, calls on the IRS to devise a more concrete cryptocurrency taxing scheme than the one it currently enforces.

Opening with reference to a similar letter the Committee sent to the IRS on May 17, 2017, the lawmakers opine that, more than a year later, the IRS has done little to guide taxpayers through the process of paying capital gains taxes on their cryptocurrency investments, even though it’s been ramping up enforcement all the while.

“... the IRS continues to expand its enforcement activities without issuing any further guidance for taxpayers. We, therefore, write again today to strongly urge the IRS to issue updated guidance, providing additional clarity for taxpayers seeking to better understand and comply with their tax obligations when using virtual currencies,” the letter reads.

It continues to argue that, since the inception of bitcoin, the IRS has “struggled” to formulate a taxation strategy to accommodate cryptocurrencies. Noting that the agency said cryptocurrencies would be taxed as property in 2014, something the IRS Commissioner at the time called “preliminary guidance,” the lawmakers claim that “to date, the IRS has not issued any additional guidance that taxpayers may rely upon to better understand their tax obligations.”

And the legislators state that they are not alone in their concerns. Since 2016, the letter indicates, multiple organizations have contributed to the conversation, alluding to calls-to-action by The Association of International Certified Professional Accountants, the American Bar Association and the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration for the IRS “to develop a comprehensive virtual currency tax strategy.”

The authors state that the IRS, despite lack of a clear strategy, has made cryptocurrency taxation a focal point of enforcement. In 2016, for instance, the agency issued Coinbase a John Doe Summons to collect information on nearly half a million Americans who invested in cryptocurrencies from 2013 to 2015. In addition to this action, in July of 2018, it launched a campaign to target those who have not complied with its mandates.

By failing to help investors properly navigate new ground, the letter draws the conclusion that the IRS “severely hinders taxpayers' ability to [comply].” As such, it calls for “the IRS to expeditiously issue more robust guidance clarifying taxpayer obligations,” arguing the agency has had “more than adequate time” to do so.

In its final paragraphs, the letter requests that the agency provide the Committed additional information toward this end no later than October 17, 2018. It also states that the Committee will request the Government Office of Accountability to audit the situation to glean a better understanding of the matter.






This article originally appeared on Bitcoin Magazine.

Posted on 20 September 2018 | 2:35 pm

Quick Brew? Bitfury's Coffee Machine Accepts Bitcoin Via Lightning Network

A Bitfury-led engineering team has created a coffee vending machine capable of accepting bitcoin payments through the Lightning Network.

Posted on 20 September 2018 | 12:00 pm

Japanese bitcoin exchange is robbed of $60 million worth of cryptocurrency - The Verge


The Verge

Japanese bitcoin exchange is robbed of $60 million worth of cryptocurrency
The Verge
Cryptocurrencies including bitcoin, monacoin, and bitcoin cash were stolen from the exchange's online wallet, where hackers were able to gain access to through the internet. Of the $59.67 million stolen (6.7 billion yen), almost $20 million (2.2 ...
Japanese exchange hack results in 6000 bitcoin stolenMarketWatch
Crypto Exchange Zaif Hacked In $60 Million Bitcoin TheftCoinDesk
Hackers stole $60 million from a crypto exchange in Japan's second major bitcoin heist this yearBusiness Insider
newsBTC -Coingape -CCN
all 544 news articles »

Posted on 20 September 2018 | 10:36 am

Another Cryptocurrency Exchange Hack Hits Japan

Another Cryptocurrency Exchange Hack Hits Japan

Another cryptocurrency heist has shaken Japan. This time, 6.7 billion yen ($60 million USD) worth of company and user funds have vanished from Japanese cryptocurrency exchange platform Zaif.

Tech Bureau Corp, the Osaka-based company that operates Zaif, estimates the heist occured on September 14, 2018, between 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. local time. The exchange detected the breach on September 17, 2018, and reported the event to authorities the following day.

Of the stolen money, the hacker siphoned 4.5 billion yen (about $40 million USD) from user accounts and 2.2 billion yen (just under 19.5 million USD) from the company’s own assets. The three virtual currencies stolen include bitcoin, monacoin and bitcoin cash. Of those, $37.8 million were bitcoin funds (5,966 BTC).

Tech Bureau Corp will be able to tell the exact number of bitcoin cash and monacoin stolen once it gets its servers back up. All the cryptocurrency was taken from a server managing its hot wallet. A hot wallet refers to a wallet that remains online for immediate transactions. In contrast, a cold wallet represents more secure, long-term storage that is kept offline.

Japan’s Financial Services Agency (FSA) has already issued two business improvement orders (one in March 2018, the other in June 2018) to Tech Bureau Corp for its lax management structure. Now the financial watchdog is considering issuing a third warning, reports the Japan Times.

The exchange has suspended all services for now but plans to get back online once it has secured its network. It also intends to pay back its customers and has already secured a 5 billion yen ($44.5 million) loan from Fisco Digital Asset Group. In addition, Tech Bureau Corp will sell a majority stake of its company to Fisco, which owns its own exchange. According to Japan Times, Fisco will send in directors and an auditor while Tech Bureau’s own managers will resign over the incident.

The hack represents another setback in a country that has been trying to regulate its cryptocurrency exchanges with the same level of oversight it does banks. Early this year, Tokyo-based Coincheck saw a loss of $530 million worth of NEM tokens. That hack represented one of the largest financial losses since the introduction of bitcoin. Coincheck has since been acquired by Monex.

Since April 2017, Japan has required all of its crypto exchanges to be licensed. Both Coincheck and Tech Bureau Corp were founded in 2014, before the new laws went into effect. Coincheck was not fully licensed at the time it was hacked, but Tech Bureau Corp is a registered exchange.

This article originally appeared on Bitcoin Magazine.

Posted on 20 September 2018 | 10:30 am

Op Ed: Why Your Financial Advisor Won't Talk to You About Bitcoin

Financial Advisor Bitcoin

Bitcoin is in the news, and we’ve all seen the stories about early investors who’ve made millions and driven away in new lambos. So it’s only natural that people who haven’t invested already are wondering if they should. Unfortunately, when they turn to their financial advisors for help, they’re often let down by professionals who can’t or won’t discuss it. Why won’t more financial advisors talk to their clients about bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies? Here are several explanations.

Your Advisor’s Firm Forbids Recommending Cryptocurrency

Merrill Lynch, Morgan Stanley, JPMorgan and Wells Fargo reportedly do not allow their financial advisors to make cryptocurrency recommendations to clients. Wells Fargo only allows advisors to give their clients research primers on digital currencies, and Merrill Lynch bans its advisors from trading bitcoin futures and Grayscale’s Bitcoin Investment Trust.

Other advisors who aren’t banned from discussing crypto with clients are hiding behind their “fiduciary” duties. That's hogwash. An advisor’s fiduciary duty requires them to act in their clients’ best interests.

In the case of cryptocurrency, that duty should mean providing well-informed, unbiased information,  not refusing to discuss it or to make recommendations about potential investments. Adding an alternative asset such as bitcoin to an investment portfolio can provide an additional source of uncorrelated alpha, the holy grail of investment portfolio allocation.

Although bitcoin is a highly volatile and relatively nascent investment vehicle, speculative and alternative investments are used quite frequently in the investment world — think commodities, precious metals and master limited partnerships. Although bitcoin isn’t right for everyone’s portfolio, for those with higher risk tolerance levels, allocating a small portion to this emerging asset class should be, at a minimum, a discussion point with their financial advisor.

Some Financial Advisors Don’t Understand Bitcoin

Most financial advisors, like much of the population, have at least heard of bitcoin, but many have not taken the time to research it on their own; instead, they rely on watercooler conversations or the most recent sensationalist media story to form their opinions. While that approach may be fine for someone with just a passing interest in bitcoin, it’s not acceptable for someone who works in the world of money and investment management.

Although bitcoin and cryptocurrencies have a technical aspect that can be difficult to wrap your head around if you don’t have a background in cryptography or programming, there are plenty of other concepts that financial advisors generally learn about that aren’t always easy to understand either, such as options, futures, swaps, derivatives and short positions.

It may not be the perceived level of difficulty, then, that’s keeping financial advisors from learning about bitcoin. Rather, they might have bought into the narrative that bitcoin is a scam or a fad. Scams have been perpetrated, no doubt. Hackers have siphoned money from cryptocurrency exchanges, leaving customers with empty online wallets. Fraudsters have raised money through false initial coin offerings and then disappeared. But these events do not make investing in cryptocurrency a scam any more than Bernie Madoff’s pyramid scheme made investing in the stock market a scam. True, we don’t yet know whether bitcoin or any other cryptocurrency will have long-term value or whether someone who invests in bitcoin today will be thrilled with or devastated by that investment five years from now.

Beyond the technical aspects of bitcoin and the blockchain, its underlying technology, financial advisors need to take the time to understand why bitcoin was invented in the first place and what problems it was designed to solve with our current antiquated global monetary and payments system. As the world’s first truly borderless digital currency, its potential to disrupt the current status quo in banking and finance is only beginning to be understood.

Further to this point, like it or not, education in the field of cryptocurrency investment is about to become mandatory for financial advisors looking to obtain the coveted and difficult-to-earn Charter Financial Analyst Designation (CFA). The CFA Institute recently announced that, beginning in 2019, cryptocurrency and blockchain topics will be part of the exam, indicating that these topics are important enough that advisors who use its letters should understand them.

The Bitcoin–Blockchain Connection

What we do know is that bitcoin’s underlying blockchain technology is likely to be one of the biggest innovations of our time. Blockchain technology is considered to be on par with the internet regarding the impact it will have on our world. What we’re just beginning to experience is being called the fourth industrial revolution.

Forward-thinking companies — and these aren’t limited to startups — are implementing blockchain solutions to improve everything from supply-chain management to cross-border payments to securities settlements.

JPMorgan and Morgan Stanley, despite their mandates to their financial advisors, are investing in bitcoin-linked, exchange-traded notes, which Goldman Sachs and Barclays are also reported to have invested in. And Goldman-funded, blockchain tech startup company Circle has acquired a major cryptocurrency exchange, Poloniex. These are just a few examples.

Advisors should be able to speak intelligently with their clients about whether they might want to invest in companies that are ahead of the curve in developing and deploying this new technology. True, anyone who invests in an S&P 500 fund already has exposure to some of these companies, but many of the most promising use cases are being developed by lesser-known companies and numerous startups worldwide.

Well-informed advisors should be comfortable discussing not only the pros and cons of investing in bitcoin but in answering questions regarding investment opportunities in blockchain-focused ETFs, as well as individual companies and projects developing new and compelling blockchain use cases.

Your Financial Advisor May Be in Denial

Financial advisors may be in denial about these changes, partly due to its potential disruptive impact on the very way they make a living today, perhaps. Cryptocurrency and blockchain technology, combined with artificial intelligence, could change how financial advice is delivered and how financial products are sold and marketed. Financial advisors may have to work harder and find new ways to deliver value to their clients.

Providing investment management alone may not be sufficient, as that work is increasingly being done by algorithms that construct and manage portfolios for clients automatically. And individuals increasingly have direct access to diversified investments with rock-bottom fees, meaning they don’t necessarily need an advisor to place buy or sell orders for them.

These changes are already well underway, and advisors who don’t adapt in the next three to five years could become obsolete, especially as younger, tech-savvy consumers make up an increasingly larger part of the market. People skills like empathy and compassion, teaching and motivating, could become more important than the ability to analyze investments.

Furthermore, clients who continue to find value in one-on-one professional financial advice may be able to more easily transfer their assets from one advisor to another using blockchain technology, a shift that will require advisors to do more to provide exceptional service if they want to keep their clients.

Your Advisor Doesn’t Earn a Commission or Fee on Bitcoin

Former long-term Merrill Lynch financial advisor Jack Tatar, the co-author of the book “Cryptoassets,” feels big brokerage firms are shortchanging clients by not discussing bitcoin with them. I couldn’t agree more. Why aren’t they discussing it?

In addition to the reasons stated earlier in this article, the real reason the financial services industry isn’t high on bitcoin is because they didn’t create it and aren’t set up to make money from it. Indeed, if your advisor were to recommend that you buy bitcoin, he or she would not earn a commission on the transaction. So why bother discussing it right? Wrong.

While many independent financial advisors are fee-only, registered investment advisors who could, if they so chose, offer fee-based consulting services to help clients better understand bitcoin, the options for buying it, safely storing it, etc., very few seem to be doing so. As a result, most individuals are not getting the advice they need and want when it comes to getting involved, or not, with bitcoin.

Conclusion

Financial advisors should be willing and able to discuss bitcoin and cryptocurrencies with their clients in the same way that they discuss other alternative investments such as gold, hedge funds and real estate investment trusts. Even if they don’t want to recommend investing in bitcoin, ether, litecoin and the like, they should at least inform their clients about how they work, the pros and cons of purchasing them, and where they can seek additional trustworthy information.

Not doing so is irresponsible. It’s easy to lose money on cryptocurrency if you don’t understand the risks, which go beyond the typical investment risks most people are familiar. With cryptocurrencies, you need to understand a whole new set of risk factors, including the risk of your digital assets being stolen if left on an exchange that gets hacked, and the risks associated with the loss or theft of your private keys, to name a few.

Individuals looking to invest in bitcoin or other crypto assets should seek out advice from financial advisors who are well versed in this arena and who can provide invaluable guidance in helping them safely navigate the complexities of investing in bitcoin and other crypto assets.

This is a guest post by Eric C. Jansen, founder, president and chief investment officer at AspenCross Wealth Management. It is provided for informational purposes and should not be construed as legal advice. Views expressed are his own and do not necessarily reflect those of Bitcoin Magazine or BTC Inc. 


This article originally appeared on Bitcoin Magazine.

Posted on 20 September 2018 | 10:18 am

US Lawmakers 'Strongly Urge' IRS to Update Crypto Tax Guidance

U.S. lawmakers are calling on the Internal Revenue Service to provide clear guidance on how cryptocurrency-related taxes will be calculated.

Posted on 20 September 2018 | 8:06 am

Bitcoin Miners Flock to New York's Remote Corners, but Get Chilly Reception - New York Times


New York Times

Bitcoin Miners Flock to New York's Remote Corners, but Get Chilly Reception
New York Times
A region that once attracted heavy industry is coping with an influx of Bitcoin speculators, lured by an abundance of cheap electricity. Computers mining cryptocurrency in a former Alcoa aluminum plant in Massena, N.Y., near the Canadian border.

Posted on 20 September 2018 | 7:12 am

Bitfury Reveals New Generation of Bitcoin ASIC Chips

Bitfury Group unveiled a new generation of bitcoin mining ASICs on Wednesday, boasting greater efficiencies than previous models.

Posted on 20 September 2018 | 7:00 am

One of Investors' Favorite Governance Blockchains Is Handing Over $20 Million

Investors are looking forward to Decred's new approach to blockchain governance – in part, because its devs are opening up $20 million in tokens.

Posted on 20 September 2018 | 6:00 am

Bitcoin Price Sees High-Volume Recovery From Five-Week Lows

Bitcoin's rebound from the five-week low of $6,100 has saved the day for the bulls and kept range-bound trading conditions intact.

Posted on 20 September 2018 | 5:00 am

Brazil Moves to Probe Banks After Crypto Exchanges Denied Services

Brazil's antitrust watchdog is investigating major banks for potentially collaborating to prevent crypto brokerages from gaining banking services.

Posted on 20 September 2018 | 3:00 am

Coinbase Disputes Claims in New York Attorney General's Exchange Report

Coinbase and other exchanges have hit back at claims of vulnerability to market manipulation in a report from the New York Attorney General's Office.

Posted on 20 September 2018 | 1:50 am

Leading Bitcoin Cash Developer Says Future Fork Unlikely

Cryptocurrency forks may slow down in the future, as argued by leaders of several crypto hard fork projects at the CoinDesk Consensus Singapore event.

Posted on 20 September 2018 | 12:30 am

Messaging Giant LINE Unveils Ambitious Plan for Crypto Token Ecosystem

LINE has revealed new details of its plan to launch a crypto-token economy by the end of this year.

Posted on 19 September 2018 | 10:31 pm

Crypto Exchange Zaif Hacked In $60 Million Bitcoin Theft

Yet another Japan-based cryptocurrency exchange has been hacked, losing about $60 million worth of cryptocurrency, including 6,000 bitcoins.

Posted on 19 September 2018 | 7:25 pm

Ecash's Creator Is Back – And He Thinks He's Built the Fastest Blockchain Ever

Famed cryptographer and digital money pioneer, David Chaum, revealed he thinks he's built a "better" cryptocurrency.

Posted on 19 September 2018 | 6:30 pm

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ConsenSys Initiative Empowers Students to Use Blockchain for Social Good

ConsenSys Initiative Empowers Students to Use Blockchain for Social Good

ConsenSys Social Impact — a program designed to build blockchain-based solutions for global humanitarian issues — is partnering with MakerDAO and optiMize to launch a new Blockchain for Social Impact Incubator at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. It is the first university-sponsored program of its kind.

Students taking part in the course will receive mentorship and guidance from blockchain advisors, as well as potential funding, as they work to build blockchain-based ventures for improving social good. Finalists will be named at the end of the year and will be awarded funding to further their designs.

OptiMize came to fruition in 2012 as a way of offering workshops and funding to students looking to design self-directed, social impact projects. Individuals accepted into the program work for approximately five months to create outlines of their projects, build prototypes, develop plans and engage stakeholders. OptiMize boasts over 3,000 alumni and has birthed over 400 social projects including blueprints for Pangaea, which provides unused medical supplies to underfunded hospitals.

MakerDAO is a decentralized platform built to bring stability to the cryptocurrency arena. The company offers its own digital token called Dai, a stablecoin reportedly priced against the U.S. dollar. Students seeking to build payment solutions during their time in the program are being encouraged to utilize MakerDAO’s smart contract capabilities for higher security.

Robert Thomas Greenfield is the global technology lead for ConsenSys Social Impact. In an interview with Bitcoin Magazine, he said programs like these are important. Not only do they introduce newer generations to blockchain technology, but they also teach students to combine their technical knowledge and their business know-how to ensure they’re prepared for anything.

“Much like the internet, a decade from now will prove that knowing the basic elements of this technology, like how to use it, will be a professional expectation,” he said. “I think we’re leaving a time in which there is complete segregation between those with technical knowledge and those with business knowledge. Both communities will need to have a cross-curricular approach to their work, and this is particularly true within the governmental and social sectors. The disintermediation of opportunistic middlemen in many of today’s processes is the biggest change we’ll experience.”

Greenfield believes that the need for government accountability and transparency is at an all-time high. He suggests the program with optiMize can be used to expose political corruption and potentially rebuild cities like Michigan’s Detroit or Flint. Both cities have constantly been plagued with crime, poverty and environmental problems, which Greenfield blames on the lagging efforts of corrupt officials, and blockchain technology can potentially be utilized to build long-term solutions for these issues.

Offering examples of such solutions, Greenfield stated, “Resource allocation tracking applications could bring more transparency to government management. These resilient cities have a history of being held back by corrupt politicians and have continually survived off the grid with the collective power of their local communities.”

Citing the Flint water crisis, Greenfield further explained, “It is possible to develop blockchain applications that can automate the disbursement of aid across different aspects of the recovery initiative, safeguarding funds in escrow to prevent governmental misuse. Immutable attestations of water purity could also prove helpful, using water line filters and hashing such as IoT [Internet of Things] data on-chain so community leaders can reference tamper-proof evidence that circumstances have or have not improved in contrast to the statements provided by government officials or utility companies.”

Greenfield says that above all, blockchain technology creates an environment where security against corruption and human error is significantly increased, and he says it’s necessary for students to be directly involved in boosting blockchain technology’s power and presence.

“The idea of creating trustless environments that are more risk averse and more automated is essential to eliminating the unreliability of human-led exchanges,” he commented.

“People have desires and temptations that can incentivize them to work against the people they’re supposed to be supporting, and it is this flaw that especially leads to dysfunction in the government and social impact. Students need to understand when a trustless system opportunity exists, how to build that system, and most importantly, how to properly design that system so it meets the needs of whatever stakeholders find it most useful.”

This article originally appeared on Bitcoin Magazine.

Posted on 19 September 2018 | 4:55 pm

Crypto Exchange Poloniex Dumps Eight Underperforming Coins

Poloniex Dumps 8 coins

Cryptocurrency exchange Poloniex is delisting eight coins: BitcoinDark (BTCD), Bitmark (BTM), Einsteinium, (EMC2), Gridcoin (GRC), NeosCoin (NEOS), PotCoin (POT), VeriCoin (VRC) and BitcoinPlus (XBC).

The announcement was made today, September 19, 2018. The coins will be delisted on September 25, 2018, and the exchange says that traders have 30 days to close out trades and withdraw the balances from their accounts. Poloniex says the move is part of a “continuous effort to improve the performance of the exchange and to better serve our customers.”

A spokesperson from Circle, the parent company of Poloniex, told Bitcoin Magazine that the coins were delisted in keeping with guidelines spelled out in Circle’s Asset Framework.

Circle did not specify what criteria the projects failed to meet. However, Poloniex’s volume has been slipping in recent months. Earlier in the year, it was the 14th largest cryptocurrency exchange by 24-hour trading volume, according to CoinMarketCap. Now, it sits at spot number 34 (at time of publication).  

Most of the coins that were delisted appear to be lesser-known projects. Several have seen huge drops in price from the beginning of the year. Still, getting delisted from a larger exchange like Poloniex can sound a death knell for small projects, causing a coin’s price to plummet overnight.  

Poloniex announced they are delisting us from their exchange causing a crash in the price.Strange decision to make considering we are about to release our latest version.

— BITCOINPLUS(XBC) (@BitcoinPlusOrg) September 18, 2018

And for others, the news appears to have caught them completely off guard.

1/2 - Given our long history of being listed on @Poloniex, we are just as surprised as you are by their announcement today to delist #potcoin from their exchange. We were given no communication or advance notice by the @Poloniex team & are still unsure...https://t.co/Wh4RPusobB

— PotCoin (@PotCoin) September 18, 2018

Einsteinium’s chief strategist, Ben Kurland, told Bitcoin Magazine the announcement came as a “complete shock.” He said they got the news just as they were in the middle of resolving a wallet issue with the Poloniex development team. “We were not notified ahead of time and given no warning this would occur,” he wrote.

Neos, the project behind NeosCoin, issued a statement about its delisting on Reddit. In response to one Reddit poster who said the delisting was likely a result of Neos missing “deadline after deadline,” Neos explained its project was just a “2-man show for the longest time.” The response provided a window into just how small some of these operations can be.

The delisting also comes at a time when Poloniex is trying to polish its act for regulators. Goldman Sachs–backed cryptocurrency startup Circle purchased Poloniex in February 2018, with the aim of “cleaning up” the exchange and turning it into an alternative trading system, or ATS, which would bring the exchange under regulatory oversight.

In March 2018, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) issued a clear warning to exchanges that initial coin offering (ICO) tokens may qualify as noncompliant securities. Any exchange that lists securities needs to either register as a national securities exchange or operate under an exemption and set itself up as an alternative trading system.

The move requires Poloniex to register with the SEC as a broker-dealer and become a member of a self-regulating organization (SRO), such as the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA).  

Between a tightening regulatory environment and demands for increased security, exchanges delisting coins may become a more regular occurence in the months to come.


This article originally appeared on Bitcoin Magazine.

Posted on 19 September 2018 | 4:10 pm

New Multibank-Backed Venture to Leverage Blockchain for Commodity Trading

Ethereum Commodity Trading Platform

A new venture involving institutional heavy hitters from across banking, trading and energy sectors is tapping into the Ethereum blockchain to settle commodity trades.

Headquartered in Switzerland, the initiative called komgo SA brings together ABN AMRO, BNP Paribas, Citi, Crédit Agricole Group, Gunvor, ING, Koch Supply & Trading, Macquarie, Mercuria, MUFG Bank, Natixis, Rabobank, Shell, SGS and Société Générale.

The company has recruited team members from Easy Trading Connect 1 and Easy Trading Connect 2, two blockchain-powered pilots for trading energy and soft commodities. Seeing as the new settlement platform will be built on Ethereum, the venture has struck a development partnership with Ethereum incubator ConsenSys, as well.

“We are now entering a new era of simple and inclusive access to blockchain technology to advance stronger, more collaborative, business relationships previously out of reach. We are thrilled to see leading commodity trade finance banks and commodity houses come together to create komgo SA, which will radically simplify and accelerate trustworthiness, auditability, and accessibility to trade financing across the industry,” Joseph Lubin, co-founder of Ethereum and founder of ConsenSys, stated in the official announcement.

In digitizing the settlement process, a platform like komgo SA could streamline commodity trading, cutting through the paper-laden procedure that is required for these assets to change hands.

The venture hopes to release its two flagship products by year’s end. One of these will set standards for know-your-customer (KYC) verification for its users, wherein “the exchange of documents will be executed in an encrypted way over the blockchain on a need to know basis.” The second product will be a digital letter of credit that will allow institutions to “submit digital trade data and documents” to any bank that has onboarded the platform.


This article originally appeared on Bitcoin Magazine.

Posted on 19 September 2018 | 3:12 pm

Bitcoin Just Flash-Crashed Before Powering Higher -- Here's Why - Forbes


Forbes

Bitcoin Just Flash-Crashed Before Powering Higher -- Here's Why
Forbes
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September 21, 2018 -
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