Kraken Crypto Exchange to Add Support for BAT and WAVES

Kraken Crypto Exchange to Add Support for BAT and WAVES

American cryptocurrency exchange Kraken will add support for Basic Attention Token (BAT) and Waves (WAVES).  According to an announcement on Aug. 21, the exchange’s users will be able to deposit and withdraw the aforementioned coins starting tomorrow, Aug. 22, as well as trade with both assets. Kraken will roll out trading pairs between BAT and WAVES and Bitcoin (BTC) and Ether (ETH), as well as with  fiat currencies such as the euro and the U.S. dollar. “The first trade executions will take a bit longer because sell orders cannot be placed until deposits are credited,” the post further reads. BAT is an Ethereum-based token and the native token of the blockchain-based decentralized internet browser Brave. BAT is a digital advertising token designed to improve how content creators are paid and how users see ads. At press time, BAT has a market capitalization of over $233 million and is trading at around $0.182, up 1.17% over the past day, according to data from CoinMarketCap. WAVES powers the Waves blockchain, a platform that allows users to build their own custom tokens and is touted to become the fastest blockchain in the world. Currently, WAVES is ranked the 47th largest cryptocurrency by market cap, which is $121.8 million at press time. WAVES is trading at $1.22, down 2.20% on the day. Earlier this week, Nelson Minier, the head of over-the-counter (OTC) trading at Kraken, said that the OTC desk’s trades per month increased by a factor of 20 since the beginning of 2018. Kraken is a major North American cryptocurrency exchange founded in 2011 and based in San Francisco. It is the 59th-largest crypto exchange overall, according to data from CoinMarketCap, with a reported 24-hour trade volume of $189.5 million.

Binance to Launch US Platform Soon, Helped by a Little-Known Partner

Binance to Launch US Platform Soon, Helped by a Little-Known Partner

Binance is expected to launch its upcoming exchange platform in the United States by the end of the year, with the company’s executive estimating that the platform will launch within “a month or two.” In the interview, Changpeng Zhao (aka CZ), the CEO of Binance, predicted the launch despite acknowledging that many things are still “in flux” regarding the platform’s planned operations in the U.S.  CZ noted that the U.S. has historically enacted “very clear regulations” regarding financial technology, adding his expectation that despite current “uncertainties in the regulatory space,” early adopters in the industry will likely be better rewarded. He stated: “The U.S. has always been a very important market; globally it’s one of the biggest markets for any business, including in cryptocurrency. We want to be fully compliant. Before we didn’t feel we had the experience to do that but now we have our partners so we want to take this opportunity to explore the market.” Binance announces upcoming U.S. exchange On June 14, 2019, Binance reviewed its terms of service to restrict U.S.-based individual and corporate customers from accessing its main platform, Binance.com, effective as of Sep. 12, 2019. At the time, 15% of Binance’s traffic came from customers residing in the U.S., down from 30% of traffic as of early 2018. On the same day, Binance announced that it had begun preparations to launch an exchange to service cryptocurrency traders in the U.S. The announcement also revealed a partnership with a little-known firm called BAM Trading Services — with the partnership set to see Binance license its matching engine and wallet technologies to BAM to launch Binance US. CZ indicated that operations of the U.S.-based platform will be “led” by BAM,” adding that the exchange will “serve the U.S. market market in full regulatory compliance.” Binance’s website quoted “a representative from BAM Trading Services,” who stated, “It is an honor to partner with Binance to launch the U.S. extension of Binance, leveraging its tier-one security and technology in tandem.” Little is known of BAM Trading Services Despite spearheading the efforts of the largest cryptocurrency exchange by volume to service in the U.S. market, very little is known about BAM. The company created a Twitter account during April 2019, the same month…

Authorities Seize Crypto Mining Equipment from Nuclear Power Plant

Authorities Seize Crypto Mining Equipment from Nuclear Power Plant

Ukraine’s top law-enforcement and counterintelligence agency uncovered crypto mining equipment on site at a nuclear power plant. According to local media reports, the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) confiscated six Radeon RX 470 GPU video cards, a motherboard, power supplies and extension cords, a USB and hard drive, and cooling units installed in the South Ukrainian Nuclear Power Plant on July 10. All of the equipment was located in a single office, No. 104, in the administrative wing separate from the power facility, from the state-owned Energoatom enterprise. The power plant is registered as a state secret and outside computer equipment is not authorized to enter the property. The same day, a National Guard of Ukraine branch uncovered additional crypto mining equipment at same nuclear plant. In this search and seizure, 16 GPU video cards, 7 hard drives, 2 solid-state drives and router were uncovered. GPUs have fallen out of favor in the crypto mining community, as more specialized equipment has come to market. It is unknown what type of cryptocurrencies were being mined. The SBU did not respond to a request for comment by press time. Reportedly, activists with the Ukrainian Cyber ​​Alliance formed a flash mob organized under the #fuckresponsibledisclosure in 2017, to raise concerns over security issues at Energoatom. Nuclear towers photo via Shutterstock

Binance Venus Aims to Outshine Libra and Chinese National Crypto?

Binance Venus Aims to Outshine Libra and Chinese National Crypto?

Within the past 12 months, stablecoins have transformed from a niche idea to tackle the issues of a volatile market into methods of payment championed by some of the world’s biggest and most powerful tech companies.  Facebook’s announcement that it would be supporting the launch of a reserve-backed stablecoin played a vital role in turning around the so-called “crypto winter” by boosting Bitcoin (BTC) prices above $10,000 for the first time in over two years. Since then, the world’s number one cryptocurrency exchange, Binance, has thrown its hat into the ring with its own stablecoin development project, “Venus.” Binance launches Venus to create localized stablecoins Not content to let Facebook call the shots for mass stablecoin adoption, Binance announced on Aug. 19 its open blockchain project, Venus, that will focus on developing localized stablecoins around the world. According to the press release, Binance will forge new partnerships that straddle both the public and private sectors, encompassing governments, technology companies and other projects across the blockchain ecosystem. Binance co-founder Yi He summed up the aims of the new project in a statement:  “We believe that in the near and long term, stablecoins will progressively replace traditional fiat currencies in countries around the world, and bring a new and balanced standard of the digital economy.” Owing to its top-spot exchange position and in public chain technology, Binance will hit the ground running. Binance Chain already enjoys wide usership, and the company has since issued fiat-backed stablecoins pegged to both Bitcoin (with the ticker BTCB) and the British pound (listed as BGBP).  The firm says it will harness its pre-existing global blockchain system to bring a cross-border payment system to customers, along with new stablecoins. Binance reported that it will be providing technical support, as well as all compliance needs.  By virtue of its astrological name alone, it’s clear that Venus is gearing up to occupy the same space as Facebook’s brainchild, the fiat-pegged stablecoin Libra, which is set to be the powerhouse behind a comprehensive payments system across the social media network’s three key apps: WhatsApp, Messenger and Instagram.  Related: Libra, TON and JPMorgan Coin Compared: Are They Heroes or Villains? Shortly after the announcement, Bitcoin buoyed by almost 5%, challenging $11,000 on Monday, Aug. 19. Despite…

Gemini Launches in Australia, Enables All Supported Coins Except GUSD

Gemini Launches in Australia, Enables All Supported Coins Except GUSD

The Winklevoss twins’ crypto exchange and custody Gemini is expanding to Australia, enabling residents of the country to use its platform to buy, sell and store crypto. Australian residents can now download the Gemini mobile app on iOS or Android to trade major cryptocurrencies, according to a press release shared with Cointelegraph on Aug. 21. The list of supported digital coins includes Bitcoin (BTC), Ether (ETH), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Litecoin (LTC) and Zcash (ZEC). While Gemini supports six cryptos, its stablecoin Gemini dollar (GUSD) is not supported in Australia, according to its website. Gemini coverage Apart from Australia, Gemini currently serves a total of 49 states of the United States, Washington D.C., Puerto Rico, Canada, Hong Kong, Singapore, South Korea and the United Kingdom. The news follows a recent report that Gemini founders Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss claimed that they are open to joining Facebook’s cryptocurrency project Libra. Cameron reportedly said that Libra is a step toward the mass adoption of crypto, expressing confidence that one day the world will not be able to live without crypto or imagine a world before crypto.  In June 2019, Winklevoss saw their fortune more than double to reach a total of $1.45 billion as Bitcoin hit a 17-month high of above $13,700. Founded in 2014, Gemini is reportedly the world’s first licensed Ether exchange, and is currently a trust company regulated by the New York State Department of Financial Services. Recently, Gemini hired cybersecurity expert David Damato as its new chief security officer. According to data from CoinMarketCap, Gemini is the 81st-largest cryptocurrency exchange with a reported 24-hour trade volume of over $35.8 million.

New Flexa Tech Will Let You Spend Bitcoin From Other Apps Too

New Flexa Tech Will Let You Spend Bitcoin From Other Apps Too

The merchant payments startup Flexa will soon allow any other app to run payments in crypto just like its own SPEDN app has since May. Staking with the company’s Flexacoin (FXC) will enable apps to trustlessly provide payments to merchants without any danger of malicious apps reversing a transaction after Flexa has transferred funds. The company raised $14.1 million in a private sale of FXC tokens in April. It’s the last piece of the puzzle for Flexa to simplify spending crypto throughout the economy. Now, CEO Tyler Spalding told CoinDesk, Flexa’s full business model should be clear to everyone. “Here’s how this is going to work,” he said. “Here’s how people can participate. Here’s what our token is for. Here’s what we believe in.” With staking enabled, any application will be able to offer payment services – but the most obvious initial use-case will be wallets. So apps that already hold crypto for users will be able to stake FXC and then enable direct-to-merchant payments. Not only will the apps themselves be able to stake, but their users can contribute to the stakes as well. The advantage of doing so will be that all stakers will share in the fees charged for using Flexa’s payment rails. Said Spalding: “Flexa is not going to be another fee-taking entity where all we do is provide the service and extract these fees.” Instead, it will actually return the fees to all stakers. Users who contribute to an app’s stake will receive a cut of the fees proportional to how much of the stake they added. Flexa created 100 billion FXC at its token-generation event and that supply is permanently fixed. As major holders of the token, it’s seeking to increase the value of FXC. “We think that good token economics are way better than a business model,” he said. “All the value we are providing to the community is in the token.” What staking does Staking creates a sort of trustless bandwidth for payments from a given app. So, for example, if a wallet provider had set up a stake of $1,000 in FXC, then its users would be able to make payments of up to $1,000. When a payment is made to a merchant using Flexa’s system, the merchant…

Gemini Heads Down Under With Crypto Exchange Launch in Australia

Gemini Heads Down Under With Crypto Exchange Launch in Australia

Cryptocurrency exchange Gemini announced Wednesday that it is officially opening its doors to customers in Australia. The exchange’s fifth international move, the development means that Australian users can buy and sell five cryptocurrencies on Gemini including bitcoin, bitcoin cash, ethereum, litecoin, and zcash. The startup, founded by investors Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss, is also making available its iOS application to this market. The U.S.-based Gemini also operates internationally in Canada, South Korea, Hong Kong, Singapore, and the UK. Speaking on the launch, co-founder and CEO Tyler Winklevoss said Gemini is looking forward to building its “Crypto Needs Rules” brand to Australia: “We are thrilled to continue expanding our global footprint and give Aussies a safe and trustworthy cryptocurrency experience. We founded Gemini to build trust in this nascent technology and we look forward to building that trust in Australia.” Gemini made news earlier this week by adding cybersecurity expert David Damato to its executive team as chief security officer. Damato joins Gemini with 20 years of experience in cybersecurity. As CoinDesk reported earlier this year, Gemini is looking to expand beyond the trade of cryptocurrencies as well. At the time, CoinDesk learned that Gemini would apply for a broker-dealer license from the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, the organization that regulates the industry in the U.S. Image via Shutterstock.

Market Update: Prices Drop as Crypto Sentiment Enters the Fear Zone

Market Update: Prices Drop as Crypto Sentiment Enters the Fear Zone

Cryptocurrency markets fell hard on August 21 following the $700 price drop bitcoin core (BTC) saw during the early morning trading sessions. Most digital assets have lost 2-8% in value as the overall market valuation of all 2,000+ coins has plunged to $263 billion. Crypto price movements have been following a trend of strong volatility, having been turbulent for several weeks. Also read: The World Bank’s Blockchain Bond Is Just a Fancy Way of Selling Debt The Top Digital Currency Markets See Percentage Losses BTC and a slew of other digital assets dropped significantly on Wednesday. At the time of publication, there’s been around $59 billion worth of daily trades happening between the most popular coins. BTC holds the top position and commands 69% of the $263 billion dollar market cap. At the moment, BTC is hovering at around $10,124 per coin and has an overall market valuation of about $181 billion. The top fiat currencies traded with BTC on Wednesday include JPY and USD and tether (USDT) captures more than 66% of all BTC trades. BTC has lost 5.8% over the last 24 hours and 2% in the last seven days. The second highest valued market cap belongs to ethereum (ETH) where each coin is being swapped for $185 per coin. ETH is down 5.8% today and there’s $7.4 billion in global ETH trades. Following ETH is ripple (XRP) which has seen the least volatility over the last few weeks. One XRP is trading for $0.26 and markets are down 3.3% today and 4.9% for the week. Lastly, litecoin (LTC) commands the fifth-largest valuation and each LTC is trading for $72. LTC has dropped only 3.5% today but lost more than 8% this week. On August 21, 2019 during the price slide, tether (USDT) is a dominant pair for every major cryptocurrency. Did you know you can now easily buy Bitcoin with a credit card? Visit our Purchase Bitcoin page where you can buy BCH, BTC, ETH, XRP, BNB, and LTC securely, and keep your BCH and BTC secure by storing them in our free Bitcoin mobile wallet.Bitcoin Cash (BCH) Market Action Bitcoin Cash (BCH) still holds the fourth position and each BCH is trading for $299. BCH has an overall market cap of…

Taipei-Based Crypto Firm Maicoin Seeks Membership in Libra Association

Taipei-Based Crypto Firm Maicoin Seeks Membership in Libra Association

Taiwanese digital currency trading platform Maicoin has entered talks with social media giant Facebook regarding its possible membership in the Libra Association. As local English language media outlet Taipei Times reported on Aug. 21, Maicoin is seeking to participate in the Switzerland-based Libra Association that works on the development of Facebook’s long-awaited stablecoin Libra. Specifically, the company is looking to operate a node on the blockchain-based network, which would validate and record transactions on the shared ledger. Participation in Libra development Maicoin CEO Alex Liu reportedly expressed confidence in the company’s chances for participating in the development of Libra, stating that: “When we reached Facebook and discussed getting involved in the project, Facebook told us that it is looking for partners around the world that not only have high technical skills to protect the node, but also are confident of building a local user base of more than 20 million people.” Liu also said that Maicoin will not have to get approval from local regulators to become a member of the Libra Association. However, should the company allow investors to trade Libra with New Taiwan dollars, it would need official authorization. On the way to win global markets Although Facebook has not yet released Libra, it is working on gaining a further share in the Asian market through affiliated projects. Facebook-owned messaging service WhatsApp is purportedly in preliminary talks with multiple digital payments firms and a state-owned bank to launch digital payment services in Indonesia. Facebook also intends to integrate its crypto wallet service, Calibra, into WhatsApp and all of its platforms. Calibra would host Facebook’s planned stablecoin, Libra. However, Calibra will not be available in India, or any countries with a ban on cryptocurrency. Analytical firm Statista estimated that there were 260 million Facebook users in India as of April this year — far ahead of the tech giant’s second-largest market, the United States.

US Treasury Sanctions Bitcoin, Litecoin Addresses Under Kingpin Act

US Treasury Sanctions Bitcoin, Litecoin Addresses Under Kingpin Act

The United States Department of the Treasury has added multiple cryptocurrency addresses to its Specially Designated Nationals (SDN) list under the Foreign Narcotics Kingpin Designation Act, or the Kingpin Act. These addresses, and the individuals associated with them, have been deemed to be associated with foreign narcotics operators. The Treasury updated its SDN list with recent Kingpin Act Designations on Aug 21. The three alleged narcotic operators associated with these addresses are Chinese citizens Xiaobing Yan, Fujing Zheng and Guanghua Zheng. The three individuals all have associated Bitcoin (BTC) addresses mentioned on the SDN List, and Guanghua Zheng additionally has a Litecoin (LTC) address. As explained in a White House press release from 2015, the Kingpin Act exists to ban trading and transactions between narcotics traffickers and U.S. entities, namely companies and individuals. Under the Kingpin Act, a multitude of governmental branches coordinate to investigate narcotics traffickers, who are then named in a list that is brought before the President of the U.S., who then determines which members on the list will receive U.S. sanctions. Mnuchin: Bitcoin is vulnerable to money laundering As previously reported by Cointelegraph, U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin believes that Bitcoin is vulnerable to money laundering. Mnuchin said that he intends to closely monitor Bitcoin and believes that billions of dollars in cryptocurrency are used for illicit purposes.  Mnuchin has further stated that he believes Bitcoin is used for money laundering much more effectively than the U.S. dollar. According to Mnuchin, the government combats “bad actors in the U.S. dollar every day to protect the U.S. financial system.”