Category Archives: Bitcoin News

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

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!

 

The post IBM, Ford to Use Blockchain in Tracking Ethically Sourced Minerals appeared first on Live Bitcoin News.

Source: Bitcoin News

Bitcoin Price Analysis: Here’s Why BTC’s Recovery Won’t Be Easy

  • Bitcoin price declined recently and settled below the $3,700 support area against the US Dollar.
  • There was a break below a crucial contracting triangle with support at $3,780 on the 4-hours chart of the BTC/USD pair (data feed from Coinbase).
  • The price tested the next important support at $3,480 and it is currently consolidating losses.

Bitcoin price is struggling to gain bullish momentum above $3,700 against the US Dollar. BTC must stay above $3,480 to avoid a downside break towards $3,200 in the near term.

Bitcoin Price Analysis

After trading as high as $4,117, bitcoin price faced a fresh round of selling against the US Dollar. The BTC/USD pair started a sharp downward move and broke the $4,000, $3,800 and $3,750 support levels. There was even a close below the $3,700 level and the 55 simple moving average (4-hours). It opened the doors for more losses and the price traded below the $3,600 support.

More importantly, there was a break below a crucial contracting triangle with support at $3,780 on the 4-hours chart of the BTC/USD pair. The pair even spiked below the $3,500 support before buyers took a stand near the $3,480 support area. Later, the price started consolidating losses and corrected above the $3,600 level. Buyers pushed the price above the 23.6% Fib retracement level of the last decline from the $4,117 high to $3,478 low. However, the $3,700 pivot level acted as a strong resistance and prevented an upside break. Besides, there is a connecting bearish trend line in place with resistance at $3,640 on the same chart.

Bitcoin Price Analysis BTC Chart

Looking at the chart, bitcoin price must gain strength above the trend line and the $3,700 resistance to move into a positive zone. The next hurdle is near $3,800 and the 50% Fib retracement level of the last decline from the $4,117 high to $3,478 low. Alternatively, a downside break below $3,480 may push the price towards $3,330 or $3,220.

Technical indicators

4-hour MACD – The MACD for BTC/USD is placed in the bearish zone, with hardly any positive sign.

4-hour RSI (Relative Strength Index) – The RSI is currently well below the 50 level.

Key Support Level – $3,480

Key Resistance Level – $3,700

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Source: Bitcoin News

Bitcoin Might Replace Gold: Nick Szabo

According to popular cryptographer Nick Szabo, Central Banks might resort to cryptocurrency reserves as means of supplementing national gold reserves. The industry expert also thinks that countries with troubled economies will see an increase in cryptocurrency usage. 

Cryptocurrency Demand to Increase in Failing Economies

Attending the Israel Bitcoin Summit at the University of Tel Aviv on January 8th, Nick Szabo laid down his thoughts on cryptocurrencies and their position in traditional economies.

He holds that Bitcoin, as well as other censorship-resistant cryptocurrencies, will see increased demand in countries where economies are shaken from failing financial practices. The same will happen in countries which have been blacklisted from international trade.

It’s easy to find reason in his words, especially after the events of late.

Just a few days ago, Vladislav Ginko, a Russian university lecturer with ties to the government said that the country plans to invest in Bitcoin in order to circumvent US sanctions.

Because of US sanctions, Russia’s elite is forced to dump US assets and US dollars and invest hugely into Bitcoins. The central bank of Russia sits on $466 billion of reserves and has to diversify in case there are limited opportunities to do it (in the future). – Ginko said.

Better Than Gold

In addition, Szabo holds that Central Banks will eventually turn to cryptocurrency reserves as means of supplementing national gold reserves.

The expert thinks that this will be driven by the lack of trust between foreign governments:

There’s going to be some situations where a central bank can’t trust a foreign central bank or government with their bonds for example. […] One solution that’s been developed is to have the Swiss government hold it for you – that’s not a trust minimized solution. The Swiss government itself is subject to political pressures and so a more trust minimized solution is cryptocurrency.

Additionally, Szabo made another valid point, outlining that gold is technically vulnerable, while Bitcoin, for example – isn’t.

Live Bitcoin News recently reported that central bank innovation will mainly hinge on gold and Bitcoin.

What do you think of Nick Szabo’s position on cryptocurrencies? Don’t hesitate to let us know in the comments below!

The post Bitcoin Might Replace Gold: Nick Szabo appeared first on Live Bitcoin News.

Source: Bitcoin News

Bitmain Replacing CEO Jihan Wu

Bitmain – the world’s leading maker of cryptocurrency mining rigs, is set to appoint a new Chief Operating Officer. The co-founders of the company Jihan Wu and Micree Zhan Ketuan, are stepping down from day-to-day affairs. 

Abandon Ship

According to the South China Morning Post, the world’s biggest bitcoin mining rig maker has made substantial changes in its senior management.

Citing anonymous sources familiar with the matter, the outlet reports that both Wu and Zhan will quit handling day-to-day business activities at the company. Their successor is reportedly a product engineering director at a company based in Beijing – Wang Haichao.

While no formal statement has been made yet, the sources reveal that Wang has already taken duties over from both Zhan and Wu.

Prior to Bitmain, Wang was working at a semiconductor design house called Availing from 2010 to 2017. He’s a graduate from what’s considered to be China’s MIT – Tsinghua University.

Bear Market Taking its Toll

2018 has seen the entire cryptocurrency market shrink to about $127 billion from its all-time high value of more than $800 billion at the beginning of the year.

This has seemingly taken its toll on industry proponents. Bitmain has been recently reported to lay off half of its staff in 2019.

According to a spokesperson at the company, however, this represents some sort of an “adjustment”:

There has been some adjustment to our staff this year as we continue to build a long-term, sustainable and scalable business. A part of that is having to really focus on things that are core to that mission and not things that are auxiliary.

It’s also worth noting that Bitmain has also Twitter account Samson Mow (@Excellion) recently shared that the company has laid off the entire Copernicus team (the team responsible for developing Bitcoin Cash GO client).

What do you think of Bitmain’s current condition? Don’t hesitate to let us know in the comments below!

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Source: Bitcoin News

Signs of Adoption: Overstock to Pay Taxes with Bitcoin

Major internet retailer Overstock is set to become the first large US-based corporation to pay its state business tax in Ohio using Bitcoin. 

Bitcoin Taxes in Ohio

Popular internet retailer Overstock announced Thursday, January 3rd, that it intends to pay a part of its commercial activity taxes (CAT) in Ohio during February using Bitcoin. Supposedly, the company will become the first major corporation to pay its taxes using digital currencies.

The move comes a few months after Ohio became the first state to allow businesses to pay taxes using Bitcoin.

Speaking on the matter was Patrick M. Byrne – Founder and CEO at Overstock, who noted:

We have long thought that thoughtful governmental adoption of emerging technologies such as cryptocurrencies (when accompanied by non-restrictive legislation over these technologies) is the best way to ensure the U.S. does not lose our place at the forefront of the ever-advancing global economy. […] We are proud to partner with forward-thinking governments and officials like Ohio and Treasurer Mandel to help usher in an era of trust through technology for our nation’s essential financial systems.

Ohio to Allow Businesses to Pay Taxes with Bitcoin

What’s the Point?

It appears that there is a solid financially justified reason for using Bitcoin instead of cash for paying taxes.

In an Interview for Fortune, State Treasurer Josh Mandel revealed that those who opt to pay their taxes using a credit card are subjected to a flat 2.5 percent service fee. On the other hand, Bitcoin users would only incur a 1 percent service fee.

Overstock, however, is in an even better position, as according to Mandel, ‘early filers’ such as the company won’t be subjected to a fee at all.

In addition, Mandel salutes Overstock’s move:

We applaud Overstock for becoming the first national brand in America to register to pay taxes via cryptocurrency. Their embrace of blockchain technology was ahead of its time and we’re proud to have them join OhioCrypto.com.

What do you think of Overstock using Bitcoin to pay its taxes? Let us know in the comments below!

Images courtesy of Shutterstock. 

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Source: Bitcoin News

Industry Leaders Offer Bitcoin Predictions for 2019

2018 is gone, and crypto enthusiasts are ready to ring in 2019 and move on from the past 12 months of what many likely consider “lowly behavior” amongst bitcoin and many of its altcoin cousins.

Bitcoin fell by over 75 percent from its December 2017 high of nearly $20,000. At the time of writing, it’s trading for just over $3,700. Other cryptocurrencies, like Ethereum, were trading for nearly $1,400, but are now struggling to maintain a $100 price. In addition, many cryptocurrency companies have either disappeared or filed for bankruptcy, while others – such as the blockchain-powered social media alternative Steemit – has laid off about 70 percent of its staff.

Bitcoin Saw Massive Drops in 2018

2018 has been a poor year for bitcoin and cryptocurrencies, and many are looking to simply move on and hope for bigger and better things as we say hello to 2019, but what will this year bring? Can we look forward to bullish momentum in the coming months, or will things shrivel up and die even further?

Many analysts are piping in with their 2019 predictions, and you can guess that the consensus is split right down the middle, with some thinking 2019 will do nothing but bring about repeat behavior, and others saying that this year will be when crypto bursts through the gates and cements its position on mainstream territory.

Brad Garlinghouse – CEO of Ripple, the second-largest cryptocurrency by market cap – has stated that the future is likely to be positive, with more banks implementing blockchain technology into their operations and trying to cash in on crypto’s benefits. The idea is that crypto, despite its falling prices, remains a solid investment goal for many investors, who are still looking to get a piece of the action. Thus, banks will work hard to ensure they can assist customers to invest in crypto safely, though whether this means more stable coin options is not yet clear.

Another prediction is that more retail investors will get involved in the crypto scene. We have witnessed companies like coffee king Starbucks pair up with the Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) to potentially allow customers to purchase products with crypto, and we may see more ventures follow suit.

Maria Smith – VP of partnerships and payments for Starbucks – comments:

A Mixed Future for Crypto?

“As the flagship retailer, Starbucks will play a pivotal role in developing practical, trusted and regulated applications for consumers to convert their digital assets into U.S. dollars for use at Starbucks. Other businesses will soon see the benefits that Starbucks receives when customers pay for products with cryptocurrency using newer, faster infrastructure, which wasn’t there last year.”

However, there remains negative sentiment regarding the potential of a bitcoin ETF, which has yet to be approved. The VanEck SolidX venture has once again been pushed back to February in terms of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) making an official decision, and the number of postponements is causing many to lose faith.

Do you think 2019 will be a great year for crypto? Post your comments below.

Images courtesy of Pixabay

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Source: Bitcoin News

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