The Daily: Robinhood Aiming for IPO, Dodgers to Give Away Crypto Tokens

The Daily: Robinhood Aiming for IPO, Dodgers to Give Away Crypto Tokens

The Daily In today’s edition of The Daily we cover news about trading app Robinhood aiming for an IPO, MLB team Dodgers giving away a collectible token to fans at an upcoming game, which crypto ventures are among the most sought-after startups in the US, and Coinbase’s big aspirations for the future. Also Read: Alleged BTC-e Operator’s Lawyer Says Greek Court Decided on Extradition to Russia Robinhood Aiming for an IPO Robinhood Financial, the Palo Alto-headquartered stocks, options and crypto brokerage app, is looking for a chief financial officer (CFO) who can help it pursue an initial public offering (IPO) down the line. CEO Baiju Bhatt revealed that his company is “actively looking for a CFO right now” as an IPO is in its future plans. He explained at a Techcruch event that: “Being a public company I think aligns very closely with our mission as well. And it’s definitely on the horizon, not in the immediate term, but that’s something we are thinking about.” Dodgers to Give Away Crypto Tokens The Los Angeles Dodgers, an American professional sports team in Major League Baseball, has announced its first ever Digital Bobblehead Night will be held in a game against the Padres on September 21. The first 40,000 ticketed fans in attendance will receive a unique code and directions to a website where a digital bobblehead of Clayton Kershaw, Justin Turner or Kenley Jansen can be unlocked and added to their ether wallet. The token received will be randomly selected, with approximately an equal number of Kershaw, Turner and Jansen codes distributed at the stadium gates. “We’re excited for our first-ever crypto giveaway, and to explore an entirely new marketplace with our fanbase,” said Lon Rosen, Dodger Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer. “We hope this piques the interest of Dodger fans, and will help launch a new age of digital collectibles and promotions.” Don’t miss the first-ever Digital Bobblehead Night at Dodger Stadium! On 9/21, the first 40,000 fans will receive a @ClaytonKersh22, @redturn2 or @kenleyjansen74 Crypto token to be downloaded and added to their Ethereum wallet. 🎟: https://t.co/36IUWLyXz9 pic.twitter.com/bVh6C5VNud — Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) September 7, 2018 Crypto Startups Shine Bright in the US Linkedin, the professional networking website, has published its “Top…

Fast & Seamless: The Race for the Cross-Border Payments Market

Fast & Seamless: The Race for the Cross-Border Payments Market

Competition in the business of facilitating cross-border payments has just gotten tighter. Until recently, the primary fintech challenger to the reigning SWIFT international payment system has been Ripple Labs and its various products designed for the institutional banking sector. The first week of September saw the game-changing news break, as IBM announced promotion of its DLT-powered payment system, Blockchain World Wire (BWW), from beta to a ready-for-use product. Operating on the Stellar blockchain, the new financial rail will provide an infrastructure for clearing and settling cross-border payments with finality “in near real-time,” at the same time reducing transaction costs by removing third-party intermediaries from the process. Pervasiveness of IBM-powered solutions in global finance — the company claims to be handling around 60 percent of the world’s transactional systems — provides BWW with a hefty launching pad, immediately propelling it to the top tier of the industry that is poised to grow to a size of $2 trillion by 2020. IBM and Stellar were first spotted jointly developing cross-border financial solutions in October 2017, when they unveiled a plan to build a transaction infrastructure for the South Pacific region alongside KlickEx, a New Zealand-based payments network. The news of another high-profile deployment of the Stellar blockchain by IBM came this May, when Big Blue teamed up with Veridium Labs to help companies track their carbon emissions on a distributed ledger. Finally, in July, IBM announced the launch of Stronghold USD, a U.S. dollar-pegged stable coin run on the Stellar network, in a partnership with financial services provider Stronghold. The latter move was set to become consequential for the Blockchain World Wire system, which at that time was still in the works. BWW workflow The mechanics of the new payment system are fairly straightforward and rely on the notion of a bridge asset — a carrier of value on the network that can be exchanged to any fiat currency on each side of a transaction. As two financial institutions negotiate a payment, they “agree to use a stable coin, central bank digital currency or other digital asset as the bridge asset between any two fiat currencies.” Although this formulation presents a range of bridge asset options, the timing of the Stronghold USD launch suggests that it is the stable coin that…

Russian Industry Association Launching Crypto Certification Program

Russian Industry Association Launching Crypto Certification Program

Finance The Russian crypto industry association is launching a crypto certification program. Applicants will be evaluated and issued a certificate showing their competency level which can be verified on the association’s website. Training will be offered to those that do not score the required number of points. Also read: 160 Crypto Exchanges Seek to Enter Japanese Market, Regulator Reveals Crypto Certification Program The Russian Association of Cryptoindustry and Blockchain (Racib) unveiled on Wednesday, September 5, the details of its upcoming voluntary crypto certification program. Formerly known as the Russian Association of Cryptocurrency and Blockchain, Racib announced its name change to the Russian Association of Cryptoindustry and Blockchain on September 6, keeping its acronym unchanged. On September 4, the association approved the concept of crypto trader certification, proposed by its vice president, Andrei Grachev. He revealed that the program will be launched “in the coming month,” RBC reported, adding that the association started developing the criteria for this system in May and the program is now ready to launch. The certification system will be based on several criteria, the news outlet conveyed, noting that assessments will be made in areas such as “reporting, workflow, customer service, remuneration, risk sharing and profit sharing.” The publication further elaborated: The competence evaluation will be conducted according to the following criteria: knowledge of technical analysis, knowledge of fundamental analysis, knowledge of semantic analysis, knowledge of risk management, knowledge of money management, skills of drawing up of trading strategy, trading planning skills, margin trading skills, [and] self-control skills. Program Details The association says “both traders and funds can take part” in this program, the news outlet explained. By traders, Grachev referred to those trading professionally for clients. He noted that the certification “will not be free, because if a person is going to professionally handle this activity and manage other people’s money, he must have some [of his] own capital.” “There will be several levels” such as basic and professional for “when a person has certain experience and business level,” he told RBC. “Applicants will receive a certificate confirming the level of their competence. Each registered document has a unique number that can be checked on the organization’s website in the corresponding section,” the publication detailed, adding: In the event that a trader…

Projects for Two Mining Pools Under Development in Russia

Projects for Two Mining Pools Under Development in Russia

Mining The Russian crypto association is working on two projects to create mining pools offering better conditions to the local mining companies. The industry has seen robust growth with an estimated 70,000 enterprises currently operating in the field, according to the organization. Miners are taking advantage of the cheap electrical energy produced in Russia. Many companies believe it’s time to legalize all activities and set universal standards in the sector.     Also read: Ukrainians Advised to Pay 19.5% Tax on Crypto Incomes Russian Pools to Offer Alternative to Local Miners The Russian Association of Cryptoindustry and Blockchain, the organization representing the interests of crypto businesses, has been involved in a number of initiatives promoting the sector and highlighting its importance for the economy. RACIB has recently decided to actively support the development of crypto mining in the country ­by participating in two projects to create Russian mining pools. One of the main tasks is to bring back to Russia some of the money that now flows to foreign companies, the association’s director Arseniy Shcheltsin told Prime. According to RACIB, more than 400,000 people are employed in the sector with 70,000 enterprises operating hundreds of thousands of mining rigs. Some of those are industrial-size farms, however, many ordinary Russians are also mining cryptocurrency in their homes and garages. Shcheltsin and his colleagues believe the number of amateur miners is gradually decreasing while professional players in the market are growing and hiring more experts, from electricians and cooling engineers, to IT specialists and program developers. Most of these facilities are currently working with Western and Asian mining pools whose operators control the distribution of the revenues. Using pools based abroad also increases the dependency on foreign counterparts, jurisdictions, and tax regimes, RACIB warns explaining its determination to back the creation of Russian mining pools. The first two are already under development, with RACIB participating in a joint project with the company Crypto Universe and in the national mining pool project called “Mine Russia”. Each of the pools has a planned capacity to support 3,000 mining units and will be mining a number of leading cryptocurrencies. RACIB’s role will also include collecting and sharing statistical and analytical data with the participating firms. Conditions for Crypto Mining Improving in…

Tip Bitcoin Cash Effortlessly on the Web With the Money Button

Tip Bitcoin Cash Effortlessly on the Web With the Money Button

Sharing economy Ryan X Charles, the founder of Yours.org, has been talking a lot about a new bitcoin cash-powered tipping plugin for websites called Money Button. According to Charles, the Money Button software is almost complete and the developer plans to launch the tipping button for websites soon. On September 6 the software programmer showed a preview of the new Money Button website prior to launch, showing how the button works and how people can send BCH tips in an effortless manner. Also read: The Darknet Cat and Mouse Game: Law Enforcement Gains More Traction Ryan X Charles Shows a Preview of the Money Button The developer Ryan X Charles is the creator of Yours.org a BCH-infused social media blogging platform. Over the last few months, the programmer has been introducing a new tipping plugin for the internet called the Money Button. When users visit the Yours.org website they can read or create posts about any subject and the platform’s participants can tip content creators using bitcoin cash. There are a few ways the social media application allows people to send funds to the author of a story in BCH. Or they can use a much quicker method by utilizing the website’s Money Button and send a person a fixed amount of BCH instantly. This week Charles has published a preview video of the Money Button standalone plugin for websites that will allow anyone to add a BCH tipping button to their website. Charles released a beta testing version of the Money Button weeks ago so people can test the application’s features such as an easy-to-integrate API for apps and publications. There’s also zero confirmation support as well for instant transactions. Website owners and content creators can test the Money Button today using the early prototype release at the user’s discretion, but the platform will officially launch its production version very soon. The platform is basically a configurable client-side Bitcoin Cash (BCH) wallet in an iframe, explains the app’s creator. Simply adding a valid BCH address to the Money Button is all it takes to receive funds. After filling in all the details to make a customized Money Button, the site owner just copies and pastes the code so it can be added it to their…

Russia Developing Own Mining Pools

Russia Developing Own Mining Pools

Mining The Russian crypto association is working on two projects to create mining pools offering better conditions to the local mining companies. The industry has seen robust growth with 70,000 enterprises currently operating in the field. Miners are taking advantage of the cheap electrical energy produced in Russia. Many companies believe it’s time to legalize all activities and set universal standards in the sector.     Also read: Ukrainians Advised to Pay 19.5% Tax on Crypto Incomes Russian Pools to Offer Alternative to Local Miners The Russian Association of Cryptoindustry and Blockchain, the organization representing the interests of crypto businesses, has been involved in a number of initiatives promoting the sector and highlighting its importance for the economy. RACIB has recently decided to actively support the development of crypto mining in the country ­by participating in two projects to create Russian mining pools. One of the main tasks is to bring back to Russia some of the money that now flows to foreign companies, the association’s director Arseniy Shcheltsin told Prime. According to RACIB, more than 400,000 people are employed in the sector with 70,000 enterprises operating hundreds of thousands of mining rigs. Some of those are industrial-size farms, however, many ordinary Russians are also mining cryptocurrency in their homes and garages. Shcheltsin and his colleagues believe the number of amateur miners is gradually decreasing while professional players in the market are growing and hiring more experts, from electricians and cooling engineers, to IT specialists and program developers. Most of these facilities are currently working with Western and Asian mining pools whose operators control the distribution of the revenues. Using pools based abroad also increases the dependency on foreign counterparts, jurisdictions, and tax regimes, RACIB warns explaining its determination to back the creation of Russian mining pools. The first two are already under development, with RACIB participating in a joint project with the company Crypto Universe and in the national mining pool project called “Mine Russia”. Each of the pools has a planned capacity to support 3,000 mining units and will be mining a number of leading cryptocurrencies. RACIB’s role will also include collecting and sharing statistical and analytical data with the participating firms. Conditions for Crypto Mining Improving in Russia The Russian crypto association is…

Japan’s GMO Launches Live Crypto Trading Platform, Adds Mining Facilities

Japan’s GMO Launches Live Crypto Trading Platform, Adds Mining Facilities

Exchanges Japanese internet giant GMO has launched a live crypto trading platform via its subsidiary GMO Coin. This is the company’s third crypto exchange and trading service. Meanwhile, the group has established more mining facilities and has mined almost 3,000 BTC and over 660 BCH so far. Also read: 160 Crypto Exchanges Seek to Enter Japanese Market, Regulator Reveals GMO Launches Live Trading Platform GMO Coin, the crypto subsidiary of Japanese internet giant GMO, announced Wednesday, September 5, the launch a live trading platform. The company has been offering two crypto exchange and trading services but never had a live trading platform until now. Its two existing services are a brokerage service and a margin trading service. GMO Coin calls the former a “sales office” service and the latter a “virtual currency FX” service. Wednesday’s live platform launch introduces the third service GMO Coin offers. The company described: On the exchange, all orders are displayed as board information. Since you can see all the [order] quantities…you can trade while seeing the buying and selling demand of investors other than yourself. Currently, only BTC is supported on the live trading platform, with a maker fee of 0% and a taker fee of 0.01%. There is no withdrawal fee and leverage of up to 10 times is available. In contrast, GMO Coin’s brokerage and margin services support BTC, ETH, BCH, LTC, and XRP. GMO’s crypto live trading platform. Photo credit: Coin News. With the new trading platform, traders “can buy and sell up to 2 BTC per order, [and] up to 1,000 BTC per day,” GMO elaborated. GMO’s existing brokerage service. Mining Operation Expanded On Wednesday, September 5, GMO Internet released the monthly report for its crypto mining business for August. GMO mining operation’s performances. In August, the total hash rate of GMO’s mining operation was 459 PH/s, an increase from the previous two months. In both June and July, the hash rates were unchanged at 384 PH/s. GMO mined 510 BTC and 25 BCH in August whereas only 568 BTC were mined in July. Since the launch of its mining business, the group has mined 2,984 BTC and 661 BCH in total. The company wrote: Our hash rate has expanded since the end of July since we are establishing more mining…

The Darknet Cat and Mouse Game: Law Enforcement Gains More Traction

The Darknet Cat and Mouse Game: Law Enforcement Gains More Traction

Emerging Markets Since the dawn of the Silk Road and the myriad of darknet markets (DNM) that followed, it’s been a cat and mouse game between law enforcement and DNM vendors and users. Also read: Proof-of-Stake is a Rebranded Version of the Old Financial System Operation Bayonet For a while, after the Silk Road was taken down it seemed like law enforcement officials and many three-letter entities had a hard time keeping up with the myriad of DNMs that popped up afterward. But now authorities are seemingly getting much better, as they are busting vendors and users multiple times a week and claim to use blockchain analysis tools. Further DNM advocates saw the loss of two of the largest darknet markets last year — Hansa and Alphabay. Adding insult to injury, the authorities didn’t just take Hansa down — they took it over for over a long period of time, collecting information on all the vendors and users who visited, many of which flocked to Hansa after the Alphabay’s website went dark. Then, while DNM patrons were scurrying to find new vendors and markets, the firm Reddit shut down the most popular darknet market subreddit giving the ecosystem another low blow. The multinational law enforcement project ‘Operation Bayonet’ started in 2017 and managed to take down the Alphabay, Hansa, and some smaller DNMs. Today, according to the website Deepdotweb (DDW), the top three darknet markets are still fully operational with a 92 percent uptimes or higher. These markets include Dream (98.2%), Wall Street Market (97.7%), and Point (92.9%). However, scrolling through the DDW newsfeed there are also many DNM busts taking place multiple times a week. Law enforcement officials are arresting a ton of high up DNM vendors, while busting much smaller dealers and users as well. Additionally, back in July of 2017 news.Bitcoin.com reported on the Alphabay “public relations guy”, ‘Trappy,’ who warned users of faux Alphabay phishing sites, but did not explain the reason behind the market’s downtime. Ronald Wheeler III of Streamwood, Illinois who was also known as ‘Trappy’ was later busted, and this summer he was sentenced to four years in a federal prison. He also forfeited $27,000 cash, 13.9 BTC worth over $100K at the time. The top DNMs are still operational, most…

Crypto Market Stands Its Ground, Three of the Top 20 Coins by Market Cap See Gains

Crypto Market Stands Its Ground, Three of the Top 20 Coins by Market Cap See Gains

Saturday, September 8: after a recent sell-off, the crypto markets is standing its ground today, with three of top 20 coins by market cap in the green and Bitcoin (BTC) hovering around $6,400 support. Market visualization from Coin360 After facing a sharp decline on the week, Bitcoin is holding its position on the market, down around 0.7 percent over the past 24 hours and trades at around $6,394 at press time. Yesterday, the major cryptocurrency dropped to as low as $6,354. Weekly Bitcoin price chart. Source: Cointelegraph Bitcoin Price Index Ethereum (ETH) keeps trading at around $210, down over 3 percent over the 24 hour period to press time. Weekly Ethereum price chart. Source: Cointelegraph Ethereum Price Index Total market cap is standing its ground, currently at the $203 billion point having seen some slight fluctuations around the $204 billion point today. Total market cap had an intraday low of $202 billion and high of $205 billion. Weekly total market capitalization chart. Source: CoinMarketCap After seeing a top dominance rate that surged to as high as 55.5 percent on September 6, Bitcoin currently holds 55.1 percent of the crypto markets, the total number of which constitutes 1,926 at press time. Weekly percentage of Total Market Cap (Dominance). Source: CoinMarketCap While the most of cryptocurrencies among top 20 coins by market cap are seeing slight losses, some coins have outperformed, seeing gains of over 5 percent over the past 24 hours. Dash (DASH) is up more than 5 percent over the past 24 hours, trading at around $196 at press time. The altcoin is still down more than 9 percent over the past week, according to CoinMarketCap. Dogecoin (DOGE), which has skyrocketed recently, is also among the leaders in terms of top 20 coins by market cap today. The digital currency is trading at $0.006 at press time, up about 5.5 percent over a 24 hour period, but at the same time almost 9 percent down over the week. In contrast, Stellar (XLM) and Cardano (ADA) are seeing the biggest losses over the top ten crypto by market cap. The sixth top coin, XLM is down around 2 percent over the past 24 hours, trading at around $0.20. Cardano is down around 2.7 percent, trading at…

Crypto is a ‘Poor Form of Money’ for Terrorists, Congressional Hearing Concludes

Crypto is a ‘Poor Form of Money’ for Terrorists, Congressional Hearing Concludes

The U.S. Congress Subcommittee on Terrorism and Illicit Finance has discussed various methods of terrorism financing with cryptocurrency, according to an official press release on the U.S. House of Representatives Financial Services Committee September 7. In order to monitor threats and methods of terrorist financing, the hearing considered major means of transferring funds by terrorists, including traditional financial institutions and semi-formal methods, such as the hawala exchange system, as well as cryptocurrencies. However, while al-Qaeda, the Islamic State, and other terrorist groups have all attempted to raise funds through crypto, they have not had great success, as Congress concluded in the meeting. Yaya Fanusie, director of analysis for the Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD) Center on Sanctions and Illicit Finance, stressed that most terrorists, especially those that serve on “jihadist battlefields,” are currently living in environments where crypto is not operable, which means that fiat use is preferable for buying goods. Fanusie pinpointed fiat money as the most anonymous method for funding, claiming that it is very popular among terrorists. While Fanusie stated that crypto is a “poor form of money for jihadists” and “cold hard cash is still king,” according to a Forbes article, he still acknowledged that “there are multiple examples of terrorist cryptocurrency funding campaigns.” The expert further stated that in order to combat the potential successful use of crypto fundraising campaigns by terrorists, the U.S. government bodies that are responsible for terrorist finance investigation should become more skilled in analyzing cryptocurrency transactions. Fanusie noted: “By preparing now for terrorists’ increasing usage of cryptocurrencies, the U.S. can limit the ability to turn digital currency markets into a sanctuary for illicit finance.” At this point, Fanusie appeared to recommend that the authorities should focus on minor crypto exchanges that trade alternative tokens or “privacy coins” instead of major exchanges that have significantly boosted their anti-money laundering (AML) and know-your-customer (KYC) policies over the past few years. Earlier this year, risk management giant LexisNexis partnered with crypto exchange Blockbid in order to introduce security solution for exchanges dubbed “Trade with Confidence,” which intends to prevent terrorism financing, among other illicit activities. In January 2018, Rep. Ted Budd (R-NC) of the House Financial Services Committee introduced a bill that aims to fight terrorism by…