Author Archives: Joshua Morris

Sirin Labs Founder Reportedly Scammed in a Bitcoin-Grin Scheme

The founder and co-CEO of Sirin Labs – one of the popular ICO projects of 2018, has reportedly been scammed out of a ‘significant’ amount of Bitcoin while attempting to purchase Grin in bulk. 

Moshe Hogeg Victim to a Bitcoin Scam

The popular Israeli blockchain entrepreneur Moshesh Hogeg has been scammed out of ‘significant’ amount of Bitcoin, local Israeli media reports.

Hogeg has posted on Facebook in a local Bitcoin community, describing the unfortunate circumstances he’s been through.

He says that he attempted to purchase a large amount of Grin through a trusted over-the-counter service, using Bitcoin for the purchase.

He has reportedly connected with a reliable seller through Telegram. What is more, the seller has been recommended to him by a third-party ‘trustee’. Before sending the Bitcoin, Hogeg has requested for a certain amount of Grin to be sent to him as proof that the seller actually owns the coin.

After the confirmation transaction had been carried out and Hogeg received the Grin as proof of ownership, he supposedly sent the necessary amount of Bitcoin.

At this time, both the seller and the trustee disappeared and never resurfaced. Hogeg says that he is already consulting his lawyer over his next steps. While the amount of Bitcoin lost remains undisclosed, it is supposedly ‘significant’.

Hogeg is the co-CEO and founder of a popular blockchain project Sirin Labs. It managed to raise $150 million during its ICO for the development of a smartphone based on the blockchain.

The project got a lot of publicity, especially after signing Lionel Messi to endorse it. Just a few days ago, Sirin Labs opened the first shop selling its blockchain-based smartphone – Finney.

What do you think of Moshe Hogeg falling victim to this scam? Don’t hesitate to let us know in the comments below!

Images courtesy of The Times of Israel

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Source: Bitcoin News

Large Indian Bank Clamping Down on Cryptocurrencies

One of the largest banks in India is asking its users to consent that they won’t be using their accounts to trade Bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies. The bank also asks for authorization to immediately shut down an account if it’s associated with digital currencies. 

Things Are Not Looking Good in India

On April 6th, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) ordered all regulated financial institutions to refrain from working with cryptocurrency-related businesses of any kind.

The move was met with a swift response from the industry which challenged the order. However, a few months later, on July 3, the Supreme Court of India upheld the ban, delivering a heavy blow to the entire field.

It wasn’t long before this took its toll on the industry. In October, India’s very first Bitcoin ATM was shut down and both of the founders of the company which operated it were arrested.

In December, Live Bitcoin News reported that the country is allegedly planning to end its statewide cryptocurrency ban. Purportedly, the Government has created an interdisciplinary committee which is figuring out ways to legalize and regulate the cryptocurrency industry instead of banning it straight away.

However, a month later, one of the country’s biggest banks has also gone against crypto.

HDFC Jumps on the Anti-Crypto Bandwagon

A Twitter user CryptoIndia YT (@Cryptoindia) shared that HDFC has requested users to confirm that they won’t use their bank accounts for trading Bitcoin or any other cryptocurrency.

Additionally, the bank has also requested its clients to “authorize the bank to close the above account without any further notice if it is observed in future that transactions have been carried out for Bitcoin/virtual currencies.”

HDFC is currently the third largest bank in India and it has around 89,000 employees throughout its branches.

What do you think of HDFC going against cryptocurrencies? Don’t hesitate to let us know in the comments below!

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Source: Bitcoin News

Binance CEO Thinks the Cryptocurrency Market is Undervalued

The CEO of the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange by means of traded volume – Binance, holds that the current state of the market is undervalued. 

Cryptocurrency Bear Market a Stretch

Speaking at the Binance Blockchain Week in Singapore, the CEO of Binance, Changpeng Zhao, shared his thoughts on the current state of the industry.

According to him, the market is currently undervalued because its pricing doesn’t seem to factor in the ongoing development and interest attested to it.

There are more people in the industry, there are more people working in the industry, there are more people attending conferences, there are more conferences going on. The builders are building, we are seeing a lot more development in the space, so I actually think that we’re probably overshooting on the lower side, but again I could be wrong, this is mass technology. – He said.

It’s worth noting that a recent Diar report revealed that cryptocurrency exchanges marked a record year in 2018, despite the plunging prices.

2017’s Bull Run Also Overshot

It’s worth noting, however, that Zhao also seems to believe that 2017’s unprecedented bull run was also a bit of a stretch.

I believe… at the end of 2017, there was definitely an overshoot on the price side… There was a lot of guys rushing in, very simple projects with very simple whitepapers. […] Then of course as everybody rushed in…once that massive rush-in finishes the price declines. – Zhao noted.

2017 saw most of the cryptocurrency skyrocket, as the entire market reached a capitalization upwards of $800 billion. Bitcoin (BTC) was trading upwards of $20,000.

2018, however, hasn’t been so favorable. The market lost almost $700 billion of its capitalization while its forerunner is currently trading at around $3,500.

What do you think about Zhao’s position on the current state of the market? Do you think it will pick up in 2019 or will we fall even further? Don’t hesitate to let us know in the comments below!

Images courtesy of Shutterstock

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Source: Bitcoin News

Buy Bitcoin at Thousands of Stores at Coinstar Kiosks

A Bitcoin ATM company based in the US has announced a partnership with a major multi-national coin-counting company to enable users to buy Bitcoin (BTC) at thousands of kiosks in different stores. 

Buy Bitcoin at Your Local Grocery Store

Coinme – reportedly the first blockchain-oriented state-licensed Bitcoin ATM operator in the US has announced a partnership with the international coin-counting company Coinstar.

According to the official release, this will enable users to enable people to buy Bitcoin in a quick and convenient way while handling their regular, daily routines like shopping for groceries, for example.

This is thanks to the more than 20,000 fully automated self-service coin-counting kiosks which are spread in nine countries operated by Coinstar.

Speaking on the matter, Neil Bergquist, CEO at Coinme said:

We’re excited to team up with Coinstar to give consumers a convenient and easy way to buy Bitcoin during the course of their daily routines. […] Bitcoin is now accessible at your local grocery store via Coinstar kiosks, and this offering will make it even easier for consumers to participate in this dynamic new economy.

The process is also fairly straightforward. According to the official release, there are four steps which need to be taken:

  1. Go to a select Coinstar kiosk, touch “Buy Bitcoin,” review and accept the transaction terms, and enter your phone number.
  2. Insert U.S. paper money into the cash acceptor (any amount up to $2,500).
  3. Receive a voucher with a Bitcoin redemption code.
  4. Visit www.coinme.com/redeem to create a Coinme account or sign in to your existing account to claim your Bitcoin.

Increased Adoption

Coinme’s partnership is just another step toward increasing the widespread adoption of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.

According to the Bitcoin ATM tracking website Coinatmradar, there are currently 4188 ATMs in 76 countries.

It’s also worth noting that since January 1st, people can also buy Bitcoin in thousands of French tobacco shops.

Do you think Bitcoin is seeing an increased adoption? Don’t hesitate to let us know in the comments below!

The post Buy Bitcoin at Thousands of Stores at Coinstar Kiosks appeared first on Live Bitcoin News.

Source: Bitcoin News

Thailand’s Stock Exchange Eyeing a Digital Asset License

Thailand’s Stock Exchange (SET) is reportedly planning to apply for a digital asset operating license. If granted by the country’s Finance Ministry, the license will see the SET becoming an authorized digital asset exchange. 

SET Eying a Digital Asset License

According to a report from the Bangkok Post, SET intends to apply to the country;’s Finance Ministry in order to obtain a license for operating with digital assets. If granted, the exchange will be able to establish a cryptocurrency trading platform.

According to the Chairwoman of the Association of Securities Companies, and vice-Chairwoman of the board of governors of SET, Pattera Dilokrungthirapop, the exchange wants to start catching up with the growing trend in cryptocurrency investing.

While the SET’s attested its interest in the field, according to Pattera, it won’t be rushing into it:

We [securities firms] are not in a hurry to enter the digital asset trade, as some companies are still managing their core businesses, while cryptocurrencies are just one of the [digital] asset classes where brokers can adapt their trading platforms to serve digital trading. […] Securities firms are currently waiting for the SET to apply for a license. For us, digital assets are expected to grow in the future as investors gain more understanding of this asset class.

Thailand and Blockchain

Thailand’s involvement with cryptocurrencies and blockchain goes back some time.

Live Bitcoin News reported that the country’s Revenue Department is planning to use blockchain technology as well as artificial intelligence in order to crack down on tax evasion, as well as to improve refunds and tax filing.

Additionally, the Bank of Thailand has also stated that they would be using DLT-based technology to issue their own Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC).

What do you think of SET’s decision to apply for a digital asset license? Don’t hesitate to let us know in the comments below!

Images courtesy of Shutterstock

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Source: Bitcoin News

Logistics Giant UPS Reveals Equity Investment in Blockchain e-Commerce Platform

Blockchain-based e-Commerce platform for B2B has revealed a partnership, as well as an equity investment by logistics giant UPS’ Strategic Enterprise Fund. 

Blockchain-Based E-Commerce Platform

According to an official press release, logistics giant UPS, through its investment arm – the company’s Strategic Enterprise Fund, has made an equity investment in e-commerce oriented company Inxeption.

The company has designed a B2B e-commerce platform based on blockchain technology, intended to integrate segments such as product design, supply chain, and manufacturing. The idea is to enable merchants to grow revenues and increase online sales in a more scalable way.

Speaking on the matter, UPS’ Chief Marketing Officer Kevin Warren, outlined:

Inxeption’s technology is attractive to UPS because it helps unlock new efficiencies for customers using B2B e-commerce platforms. […] UPS creates alliances and partnerships to gain market knowledge and position the company as the shipper of choice in ecommerce.

UPS And Blockchain

This is not the first engagement of the logistics giant with the field of blockchain technology.

Last year, the company filed an application for a patent with the Patent & Trademark Office of the US.

The company was seeking legal protection for a system which uses blockchain technology to store different types of data within a distributed ledger.

In general, blockchain technology has seen positive reception in the shipping industry. Again in 2018, Australia’s Commonwealth Bank managed to ship and track 17 tons of almonds using distributed ledger technology.

Additionally, Live Bitcoin News reported that IBM and Ford have teamed up in a pilot project which uses blockchain to track ethically sourced minerals.

What do you think of UPS’ latest investment in a blockchain-based e-commerce platform for B2B? Don’t hesitate to let us know in the comments below!

Images courtesy of Shutterstock

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Source: Bitcoin News

IBM, Ford to Use Blockchain in Tracking Ethically Sourced Minerals

In a push to support human rights and environmental protection, IBM, Ford Motor Company, amid other corporate moguls, will pilot a blockchain project to track ethically sourced minerals in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

Blockchain to Track Ethically Sourced Minerals

Blockchain-based technology will be used to track the sourcing and distribution of ethically sourced minerals – cobalt, in particular, in the Democratic Republic of Congo. According to the official release,

The blockchain pilot aims to introduce more transparency into the global mineral supply chains. Participants in the project are marquee companies representing each major stage of the supply chain. These include Ford Motor Company, Huayou Cobalt, IBM, RCS Global, and LG Chem.

Each of the participants in the designated network will be validated against the necessary sourcing standards, as developed by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).

Besides participant validation, blockchain technology will also guarantee data immutability, making information accessible by all permissioned participants in real time.

IBM’s Blockchain Platform

As the pilot scheme is already in progress, the release also reveals that the project will use IBM’s Blockchain platform powered by Linux’s Hyperledger Fabric.

IBM’s been heavily invested into blockchain technology as the company has over 400 people working on projects involving it. It’s also been involved in other supply chain network-oriented projects revolving around the usage of blockchain before.

Speaking on the matter was Manish Cawla, GM, Global Industrial Products Industry at IBM, who said:

With the growing demand for cobalt, this group has come together with clear objectives to illustrate how blockchain can be used for greater assurance around social responsibility in the mining supply chain. […] The initial work by these organizations will be used as a precedent for the rest of the industry to be further extended to help ensure transparency around the minerals going into our consumer goods.

What do you think of the blockchain-based project to track ethically sourced minerals? Don’t hesitate to let us know in the comments below!

 

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Source: Bitcoin News

3 Cryptocurrency Trends in 2019 from 3 Industry Experts

Three industry experts have recently provided their take on what the trends in the cryptocurrency field will be in 2019. Let’s have a look at three recent predictions regarding the market and the trends to follow from popular industry experts. 

Equity Capital Raising in ICO Projects

Paul Veradittakit, a partner at prominent cryptocurrency investment fund Pantera Capital, observes an emerging trend amid blockchain-related companies – they are raising funds by selling shares instead of issuing more digital tokens.

A bunch of companies that raised capital using the initial-coin-offering structure either have managed their treasury poorly or realized that they haven’t found a strong use case for their token — they are in need of more capital and to raise an equity round. – He said.

It’s worth noting that Pantera Capital’s CEO – Dan Morehead, said back in August 2018 that Bitcoin’s price would be “much higher a year from now.” In other words, we have about five months to see whether his prediction will come true.

2019 Will See the End of the Bottoming Process

According to Fred Wilson, co-founder of Union Square Ventures, 2019 will be the year where we’ll see the bottoming process end and enter a new bull run.

I expect we will see some bullish runs, followed by selling pressures taking us back to retest the lows. […] I think this bottoming out process will end sometime in 2019 and we will slowly enter a new bullish phase in crypto. – Said Wilson.

However, he’s also predicted that we’ll see a bear market in stocks, dislocations in the leadership of the US, a number of global economic issues, and a weakening economy. Wilson said that cryptocurrencies won’t manage to become a safe haven for any of the above.

Crypto Hedge Funds Will “Suffer”

Popular proponent and notable crypto Twitter personality Anthony “Pomp” Pompliano, founding partner at Morgan Creek Digital, said towards the end of last year that a lot of cryptocurrency hedge funds might start to shut down.

The reasons for this are the incentive fees structure as well as the prolonged bear market in 2018.

According to him, fund managers only receive a performance fee if the net value of the fund is higher than in any previous investment period.

He also added that:

We have seen 50-80% decreases in net asset values in some funds since then. […] This means these fund managers will not receive a performance fee in 2018, which drastically reduces the income of the individual manager.

What do you think of these industry predictions? Don’t hesitate to let us know in the comments below!

Images courtesy of Shutterstock

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Source: Bitcoin News

Cryptocurrency Exchange Cryptopia Hacked, Reports Significant Losses

New Zealand-based cryptocurrency exchange Cryptopia has been hacked. The team confirmed the attack while revealing that the losses are ‘significant’. 

Cryptopia Hacked

A few days ago, on January 13th, the cryptocurrency exchange Cryptopia went into unscheduled maintenance. At the time, the platform’s team tweeted:

“We are currently experiencing unscheduled maintenance, we are working to resume services as soon as possible. We will keep you updated.”

Today, however, the exchange has come up with an official announcement that its security has been breached, resulting in ‘significant losses’.

“Yesterday 14th January 2019, the Cryptopia Exchange suffered a security breach which resulted in significant losses. Once identified by staff, the exchange was put into maintenance while we assessed damages.”

The exchange gave no further information regarding the loss of funds.

However, it also said that all the appropriate authorities, including the NZ Police and High Tech Crimes Unit have already been informed and are working on a joint investigation.

Immediate Community Reaction

The reaction of the crypto community was also timely. Popular twitter personality WhalePanda (@WhalePanda), was quick to note that the timing of the event was interesting.

It’s also worth noting that a certain outgoing ETH transaction took place 45 hours ago where 19,390 ETH have been transferred from Cryptopia’s tagged wallet to an unknown address. The ETH is worth almost $2,5 million.

What do you think of Cryptopia being hacked? Don’t hesitate to let us know in the comments below!

Images courtesy of Pixabay

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Source: Bitcoin News

Kyle Samani: Dominance of Ethereum Among Blockchain Developers Will Be Challenged, But How?

Kyle Samani, the co-founder of the $75 million cryptocurrency fund Multicoin Capital, has said that Ethereum will eventually challenge Bitcoin’s dominance over the market. 

A Shift to Decentralized Exchanges

The founder of the Austin-based multi-million dollar cryptocurrency fund Multicoin Capital, Kyle Samani, has shared his take on the current stage of the cryptocurrency market.

He holds that it hasn’t all been doom and gloom despite the tumultuous 2018. According to the expert, one of the hottest trends on the block will be decentralized exchanges.

He believes that Binance’s plan to introduce a decentralized exchange will cause a massive shift in the cryptocurrency space.

Binance realizes that the greatest disruptive threat to their business is decentralized exchanges. […] On a long enough time scale, they believe it is likely to become a dominant form of exchange. As such, they’re aiming to disrupt themselves by pioneering here. I expect that they will create incentives to encourage customers to trade on the decentralized exchange instead of the centralized one, and will actively bridge liquidity pools. – He said.

In addition, he also said that other platforms might follow in the footsteps as Binance, as soon as it brings its decentralized trading platform to light.

Ethereum to Be Challenged Fiercely

Ethereum’s dominance as a platform providing an underlying infrastructure for the development of decentralized applications will be challenged fiercely going into the short to medium-term future, according to Samani.

He holds that a group of very well-funded projects will be able to pose a threat to Ethereum as the leading smart contract platform.

All of the new blockchains are aiming to challenge Ethereum. […] I expect by the end of the year the percentage of total developers building on Ethereum will be lower than it’s right now, simply because of the competition. […] At the end of 2019, I still expect Ethereum to be the market leader among smart contract platforms. But there is a real probability that by the end of 2020, this is no longer the case. – Said Samani.

What do you think of Kyle Samani’s take on the current state of the cryptocurrency field? Don’t hesitate to let us know in the comments below!

Images courtesy of BizJournals

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Source: Bitcoin News

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