Crypto Crash Reality Check a Good Thing For The Industry

The long drawn out bear market of 2018 has been very painful for a lot of crypto traders. However, it may be just the reality check the industry needs in building more stability for future growth.
What Goes Up Must Come Down
When charts go parabolic it is never a good sign for any asset, digital ones included. The unnatural spikes seen on Bitcoin and across most altcoins during the last two months of 2017 should have been a warning sign of what lies ahead. The hype and fervor were palpable with moons and lambos becoming a reality for a lucky few.
The seemingly unsustainable growth had to come to an end at some stage and January 7, 2018, marked that day in crypto land. After reaching a peak market capitalization of $830 billion things started to turn south in a trend that would last the entire year and beyond. In a crash of over 87% crypto markets plunged to just over $100 billion, a low hit on Saturday.
Many have lost out big time after pumping funds into cryptocurrencies only to see them evaporate over the course of the year. The FOMO train was a hard one to disembark and hodling seemed to be the only option unless prepared to sell at a loss. Channel News Asia spoke to a few traders who were mostly in regret at the moment.
“Crypto is already so cheap. It doesn’t make sense to sell something so cheap and buy something else,” one said. “Of course I look back, I regret it, but there is no way for me to undo that,” added another.
The big purge will be painful for many but it may not be that bad a thing for the ecosystem as a whole. US regulators have been the catalyst behind a lot of the selling pressure as have a number of high profile exchange hacks and ICO scams.
Regulation, however, is needed in moderation to weed out the bad actors and bring a little stability to the industry. Parabolic charts and pump and dump schemes are not conducive to a healthy trading and investing environment. Lower volatility is also far better for the general adoption of cryptocurrencies in daily life.
The focus should no longer be on price but on what the technology can achieve, as suggested by David Lee, a professor at the Singapore University of Social Sciences;
“Prices coming down is a very good thing for the industry. We should not focus on the price. It’s always a cycle … People need to refocus on how much can this technology do, and the answer is a lot,”
Industry leaders such as Binance CEO CZ shares this opinion and has adopted a ‘buidl’ attitude with a focus on developing the technology so that it can serve its real purpose.
Image from Shutterstock
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Source: New

Coinbase CEO: Crypto in VR is the Next Big Application of Blockchain

Either it will be the best thing the crypto world will ever experience or a farce in the name of the best thing the world will ever experience.
That’s pretty much the discussion around virtual reality (VR), a technology which allows humans beings to experience an immersive illusion of being somewhere else. Many Hollywood blockbusters, including The Matrix, and the very recent Ready Player One, attempted to illustrate how the next generations of VR technology could be. In these movies, protagonists were living inside a world created by stunning – and almost paranormal – objects. They had a job (even if it was about kidnapping a key maker), expensive Ferraris, and even a bae to hang out with.
Away from the sci-fi, engineers meanwhile are exploring real-time use cases based on the VR. The technology is promised to gamers, with the influx on highly-handed games launched by the Play Station and the Xbox. Apart from that, the possibilities of removing the middle layer of keyboards and emails and using avatars to pass down information at workplaces are also being explored.
It could be a reason why Brian Armstrong, co-founder of one of the largest crypto exchanges Coinbase, believes that VR could become a tool to expand virtual payment technologies. They could allow participants to earn virtual money which they can take back to the real world and spend them like any other fiat money.
“The reason is simple,” explains Armstrong. “When people transact in virtual worlds, it doesn’t make sense to use the currency of one country. People from all over the world will gather in these virtual spaces, and it would be exclusionary (or perhaps even rude) to use one country’s currency in a digital world. Furthermore, digital currency will create an incentive for people to spend more time in these worlds (where they can earn “real money”) creating a virtuous cycle for companies building these worlds.”
Bitcoin in a VR World
Armstrong referred to the copper coins from the movie Ready Player One. These coins were a form of treasure or reward a character would receive within the OASIS, a virtual reality world. Players used a bag of holdings to store these coins.
Developers of such virtual worlds could create their centralized digital currency or use an existing decentralized currency like Bitcoin or Ethereum, Armstrong suggested. He also envisioned how people would start spending more time in the VR world to earn a passive income, especially when it’s going to be usable in the real world.
“Customers of these products can take the money they generate in the virtual world, and convert it to traditional money to pay their bills in real life. This will help take virtual reality from a hobby or entertainment to a full time job or lifestyle,” Armstrong explained.
While the theory itself seems like a sci-fi, it is still very interesting from the technological point of view. Who knows, nobody would need to go to the office anymore as they wear a headset and control every random task via an avatar.
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Source: New

XRP/USD Technical Analysis: Bear reigns in the long run

XRP, the cryptocurrency which successfully surpassed Ethereum by market cap, is struggling to dodge the bear’s attack in the market. The cryptocurrency continues to bleed in double digits along with other top cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin [BTC], Bitcoin Cash [BCHABC], and Litecoin [LTC].
According to CoinMarketCap, at press time, XRP is trading at $0.2989 with a market cap of $12.23 billion. The coin shows a trading volume of $529.62 million and has plunged by more than 19% in the past seven days.
1-hour chart:
XRP one-hour price chart | Source: Trading View
In the one-hour chart, the coin demonstrates a downtrend from $0.3815 to $0.3636. It also pictures a fall from $0.3256 to $0.3095. The coin has an uptrend from $0.2940 to $0.3016. The immediate resistance is set at $0.3257 and the strong resistance is set at $0.3443. It has an immediate support at $0.3015 and strong support at $0.2938
Parabolic SAR showing a bearish wave as the dots have aligned above the candlesticks.
Chaikin Money Flow has entered the bull’s side of the market as the line has breached the zero line to take the direction upwards.
Bollinger Bands have started to contract, forecasting a less volatile market for the coin.
XRP one-day price chart | Source: Trading View
In the one-day chart, the coin demonstrates a downtrend from $0.9028 to $0.5558. It records another steep fall from $0.3826 to $0.3059. It has an immediate resistance at $0.3962 and a strong resistance at $0.5164. The coin has found a support ground at $0.2622.
Klinger Oscillator has made a bullish crossover in the market.
MACD is on the bear’s side as the moving average line has made a crossover to take the path down the hill.
RSI is also forecasting a bearish wave as it is indicating that the coin is oversold in the market.
The bear has the support of the Parabolic SAR from the one-hour chart and the MACD and RSI from the one-day chart. The bull has the support of Klinger Oscillator from the one-day chart and CMF from the one-hour chart.
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Source: AMB Crypto

Coinbase gives BUIDL back to the community

Coinbase, one of the biggest exchange platforms around the world, became the talk of the town ever since it was revealed that the company was planning to trademark one of the most popular terms, BUIDL. The response that the company received turned out to be rather unpleasant, with even well-known influencers calling out the exchange platform on this move.
This included Changpeng Zhao, the Founder, and CEO of Binance, popularly known as CZ. The Founder was using the term on several occasions along with other ones such as HODL, and SAFU. When the news regarding the trademark broke out, a Twitterati, Rallyqt claimed that CZ has been using the term and she has not come across a single tweet from Coinbase which included the term.
To which, CZ said:
“lol, that’s hilarious. We focus on real building, not filing. I think I saw HODL somewhere first. I may or may not be the first one to use the BUIDL term. Can’t remember, and not that important. … But if they fk around with #SAFU, I will be pissed!”
This was followed by CZ stating that pissed means “lawyers ready to go”, adding that trademarking terms such as BUIDL, which is widely used in the community hurts the company reputation instead of building it.
Nonetheless, Balaji S. Srinivasan, the CTO of Coinbase, has also stepped in with the intention of clarifying Coinbase’s move. He said on Twitter:
“Saw the commotion on Twitter & dug into this. Coinbase filed the trademark for BUIDL some time back. I learned about it today & chatted with team. TLDR is that @brian_armstrong & I don’t believe in trademarks for stuff like this so we’ll be giving this one back to the community.”
Srinivasan further stated that the company had “no intention” of preventing the cryptocurrency community from using the terms. He also revealed that they had thought of a feature called Coinbase BUIDL and the reason they had made the filing was to avoid “patent trolls” for a common term.
Additionally, Srinivasan stated that BUIDL was first used in one of his talk that go back to April 2015, before he joined Coinbase.
He went on to say:
“But it’s entered the common crypto lexicon at this point and we wouldn’t have it any other way.”
To which, CZ said:
“Great stuff! Respect for using it all the way back in 2015, and for being community driven. Coffee/drinks on me when we meet again. Where was the first use of HODL? Anyone know? “.
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Source: AMB Crypto

Report: The Biggest Crypto Bears Are Selfish Chinese Miners

Many have been wondering which group represents the majority of crypto bears recently as prices keep plummeting. Those that got into crypto within the last year have likely fled the scene with tails between their legs and burnt fingers. That leaves long term hodlers, institutional investors, and Chinese crypto miners.
Chinese Miners Playing the Short Game
A report in a local media publication aligned with Bitmain suggests it could be this latter group that have been shorting Bitcoin in great numbers. According to a translation of the story, several quotes were taken from Chinese miners explaining their reasoning;
“Everyone is short-seller, we do this for self-defense but that will lead to a further decline in cryptocurrency price … Without short selling, we will be eliminated ultimately, but if everybody keeps doing this, we will finally die together, which is quite heroic,” said a Chinese miner called Jin Xin.
In a bear market with a down trend that is getting steeper by the week it makes sense to hedge on shorting cryptocurrencies;
“If I mine 30 coins in the next month, while its price may continue to fall by another 10% according to the current trend, I shall place a short order on the exchange to sell them at current price but deliver one month later,” he added.
Similar to futures, the miners can lock in a price for their coins instead of facing more uncertainty down the line when prices are likely to be even lower. Hedging has become an essential skill in surviving a bear market whereas four years ago, when there were fewer Bitcoins and mining difficulty was much lower, hodling would have sufficed.
Bitcoin mining has gone through several stages over the years, from a garage activity for enthusiasts on gaming rigs, to mega factories, and now to a financial model. The principal now is that if the price drops, then miners make a profit, but that profit is negated by the now lower value of the coin they have. As pointed out by Trustnodes, if price increases, then they make a loss by short selling, but that loss is annulled by the higher value of the now movable coin they hold.
This is a rather selfish and destructive approach to the crypto ethos which may well end in bankruptcy for many Chinese miners. Smarter ones are likely to be hodling while the storm passes and waiting for a time that they can sell again at a higher price rather than trying to get instant profits by destroying the product.
This year increasing hashrates have reached a point of unsustainability, a tipping point past which it would no longer be profitable to continue mining. Over the past month difficulty and hashrate have dropped as miners start to pull their heavy duty mining rigs out, leaving a gap for the smaller outfits.
Some miners have started buying up used GPUs again as a second strategy, the selfish are shorting, and those most likely to survive have gone into hibernation with their stash for the crypto winter in wait for warmer days ahead.
Image from Shutterstock
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Source: New

Binance Posts Video Demo of Its Decentralized Exchange Featuring Binance Chain

Binance, the biggest crypto exchange by volume, yesterday released a new video demonstration of its decentralized exchange ahead of its launch in Q1 2019.
The broadcast exhibited the trading interface of Binance DEX – as the platform is called – along with its web crypto wallet feature and Binance Chain, Binance’s native public blockchain explorer which, according to the company, will be available on a testnet soon.
Source: Binance YouTube
The video tour revealed that Binance DEX would resemble the original web trading platform, especially when it comes to interface. However, there were some notable differences such as a feature that would allow users to generate a 24-word mnemonic seed phrase for private keys. Binance DEX also possesses a “balance tab,” a feature that would enable users to access the status of their accounts, and a “user icon” that would show individual wallet addresses.
With Binance Chain, individuals will be able to extract information related to blocks, transactions, wallet addresses, and order IDs, the demonstration explained.
Source: Binance YouTube
Binance Chain will empower the record keeping infrastructure of the DEX. According to the statement made during its introduction in March, the public chain also expects to offer “low latency, high throughput trading, as well as decentralized custody of funds” to mitigate single points of failures.
The block explorer would also list a feature that would list details about all the coins listed on the Binance DEX.
Binance also cleared that their DEX would not hold users’ private keys, which means they will not be able to move users’ funds as centralized exchanges do. Instead, their platform will integrate decentralized wallet applications like Trust Wallet, known for their server-free infrastructure. They would enable users to keep their wallets’ private keys in their devices than with a third-party. It means that only private key holders would have access to the funds.
Related Reading: Zhao: Binance Chain to Be Ready in “Months,” Enabling Projects to Issue Tokens
Price Surges After Announcement
The video demo release met with a positive response from the Binance trading community.
The BNB price against the U.S. Dollar jumped as much as 6.2% since it opened the day at $5.99. On a 24-hour period, according to CoinMarketCap, BNB established circa 15% gains while the rest of the top crypto assets remained red.
Nevertheless, as evident with the way the crypto market behaves, BNB is likely to correct lower in the near term, having been outreached its upside targets. The coin’s long-term aspects are fundamentally bullish, especially because Binance Chain would function no less than Ethereum. The chain would allow new blockchain projects to digitize and launch their assets – all backed by the BNB token.
BNB will migrate from ERC20 standard to its Binance Chain upon the mainnet launch.
The BNB/USD pair is trading at $6.34 at the time of this writing.
Featured image from Shutterstock.
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Source: New

US Government Aims to Make Privacy Coins’ Use Case Obsolete

A branch of the United States Department of Homeland Security (DoHS) is researching the possibility of using blockchain forensic analysis tools to better trace privacy coin transactions.
Privacy No More: US Government Preparing Forensic Analysis Tools
Among the biggest concerns surrounding cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin are fears that the emerging technology could facilitate money laundering by rogue countries, terrorist organizations, and cybercriminals.
However, the United States government has increasingly bolstered their ability to trace blockchain transactions, and have even learned how to track Bitcoin transactions back to the source and identify the wallet holder, as was the recent case where the U.S. Treasury sanctioned two men from Iran over their involvement in ransomware attacks.
Related Reading: Iran Is Prepping National Crypto to Evade US Sanctions
Next on the government’s agenda, is to begin looking into privacy-focused cryptocurrencies, such as Dash, Zcash, Monero, and more.
According to a pre-solicitation document published by the DoHS’s Small Business Innovation Research Program. The document, discovered by The Block, the U.S. government is allegedly investigating ways to better track transactions on the blockchains of the aforementioned privacy coins.
The report does speak positively about some of the aspects of privacy coins, but calls attention to transactions of “illegal nature” that occur using said cryptocurrencies. The eventual goal is to build out a platform that law enforcement agencies, government branches, and even private financial institutions can use to analyze and enforce important anti-money laundering laws.
Since the document is just a pre-solicitation, the notice is “merely an opportunity for interested parties to comment on or request information about the attached topic areas,” and doesn’t mean that the government already has such tools in its possession. It does, however, prove that the DoHS has concerns over privacy coins and their potentially illegal usage.
Japan Bans Privacy Coins, Will the United States Follow?
Zcash, Dash, Monero, and many other privacy-focused cryptocurrencies allow users to hide transaction and address data from anyone outside of the sender and receiver.
Monero is the cryptocurrency of choice for most cryptojackers as cybercriminals are able to easily hide their tracks. Monero has also unseated Bitcoin as the most-used cryptocurrency on the dark web, so it’s no surprise to see that the United States is joining Japan in addressing concerns around privacy coins.
Related Reading: Japan’s FSA Grants Self-Regulatory Status to Crypto Industry
In Japan, where cryptocurrency-related theft has skyrocketed, the Financial Services Agency (FSA) has imposed a ban against any cryptocurrency exchanges in the country from offering privacy coins. The ban took effect this past June, and the ripple effect is just now reaching the United States.
Coincheck, which suffered the largest cryptocurrency exchange hack in history at the start of this year, was among the exchanges that were forced to comply with the FSA’s ban, and removed Monero, Dash, Zcash, and Augur’s Reputation coin.
Featured image from Shutterstock.
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Source: New

Argo Blockchain Sees 146% Increase in Crypto Mining Package Sales

A shattered crypto market has not deterred miners from purchasing crypto mining software packages, revealed Argo Blockchain.
The U.K.-based Mining-as-a-Service (MaaS) firm noted a 146% jump in its sales between October 1 and December 4 after selling a new batch of packages.
It led the company to beat its January 2019 sales targets ahead of time and by a notable margin. As of now, Argo expects to note an annual revenue of $6.2 million, up from $0.26 million when it listed on the London Stock Exchange.
Meanwhile, the firm stated that its net cash balance as of November 30 had reached close to $19.22 million.
Mike Edwards, co-founder, and director of Argo, claimed that their high revenue growth proved their strategies were working despite the crash in the crypto market lately. He acknowledged that the demand for crypto mining packages was already going up, which made Argo expand its mining capacity in September to cater to seven-times more subscribers. As expected, the supply underfed the growing demand, leading to an immediate sell-off of the mining software packages after release.
“Demand for the company’s packages continues to exceed supply, but the company looked to the future with confidence,” Edwards added.
Related Reading: US Mining CEO: Bitcoin Miners Are Being Flushed Out of the Market
Future Projections
Argo has a sustainable business model that could lead to “highly-profitable” fiscal quarters in the future, believes Alan Howard, a senior equity analyst at Argo’s house broker, Mirabaud Securities.
The financial expert explained that the firm had started posting profits just three months after the launch, with its annual revenue run rate hitting $2.5 million. He recognized that if Argo manages to sell 30,000 packages within the first 12 months of launch, its revenue run rate will peak to as highs as $18 million. It would remain profitable even after cutting down operational costs related to hardware, customer acquisition, and electricity.
“Longer term, the company is well positioned to develop a mass market and highly profitable global crypto-mining service, having already secured enough power capacity at highly attractive electricity costs (US$0.030-0.038 per kWh) to be able to service over 150,000 packages from its Canadian data centers,” Howard had said.
The company could also benefit from Bitcoin’s falling difficulty which makes it easier for miners like them to mine the digital currency while preserving the essence of its proof-of-work blockchain. However, the projections do not specifically describe how much of a role Bitcoin could play in posting bullish figures for Argo.
Simple Mining
The crypto mining sector faced huge losses after the crypto market crashed more than 80% from its all-time high. Miners that were bullish on specific cryptocurrencies pre-ordered expensive mining equipment, expecting their tokenized rewards would be met with higher fiat equivalent down the road.
At the same time, chipmaking companies such as Nvidia and AMD misread the demand for crypto mining equipment and oversupplied the market. As the demand dropped due to non-profitability, they eventually stopped manufacturing more mining chips.
Argo, on the other hand, has removed the necessity of owing mining equipment from the equation. Their users subscribe to their monthly packages, and they use the money to run their mining operations in countries with cheaper electricity rates – thereby, ensuring profits to all. Noting that Argo is heavily regulated, investors appear more confident in their business model.
Last checked, Argo shares went up 18.4% to 5.625p.
Featured image from Shutterstock.
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Source: New

Bitcoin problem can be solved with Bitcoin, says Money Button CEO

Ryan X Charles,  the CEO of Money Button and a Bitcoin Cash SV proponent spoke about the concept wherein we don’t need to change the Bitcoin protocol to solve its problems, on his latest Youtube video.
Charles remarked that the concept is that Bitcoin can be used to solve problems that are prevalent with Bitcoin, stating that there was no need to change the protocol. He added that this is a “very simple idea” and stated:
“it’s basically the idea that if you have some type of issue like a particularly instant transactions or scaling, you can actually create businesses that create value for people and you can charge in Bitcoin for services that solve these problems and then you can payout in Bitcoin. So you earn, save, spend with Bitcoin and you can basically start businesses to solve problems”
He also stated that the problems can be solved with the help of smart contracts on Bitcoin. This was followed by Charles stating Bitcoin has a built in smart contract language that allows people to create any type of contract which is related to solving problems with Bitcoin. Charles added that the limited supply of the coin allows it to be sound money and that on-chain scaling is going to add on to its global adoption.
The CEO further elucidated on this concept in theory by speaking about the Bitcoin transaction confirmation, stating that it takes almost 10 minutes for the confirmation of a transaction. He added that currently Bitcoin SV apps relies on zero-configuration, wherein “you just sort of trust that it will confirm”. Charles stated that there is a possibility that this can be exploited, and that in many cases people can double spend if the transactions have not been confirmed.
He continued to say:
“First of all if the double spends don’t usually happen, then it’s just a business question of do the benefits outweigh the costs. If there’s a little bit of fraud, so long as that fraud isn’t overly expensive and you’re earning more money than you’re losing and fraud. It’s acceptable, although you certainly want to minimize fraud”
Charles stated that fraud can be minimized by analyzing the network and the people sending money and this information can be accumulated into a Bayesian probability theory calculation wherein the probability of fraud can be computed. He added that if that probability is low after a certain duration, then it can be accepted.
He went on to say:
“You can also provide insurance so you can guarantee an instant transaction and then basically the insurance company takes the cost of fraud on and so that way the merchant always has reliable transactions and they don’t have to worry about fraud ever but then they have to pay the cost of insurance.”
This was followed by Charles stating that this was one of the options to solve instant transactions using Bitcoin without changing the protocol.
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Source: AMB Crypto

Long-Time Investor: IOTA is Centralized, Single Point of Failure Exists

An early-age IOTA investor has claimed that the project is centralized and is exposed to a single point of failure.
Limo, who runs an IOTA-specific blog called, identified issues related to how IOTA’s data structure operates. The project uses Tangle, a Directed Acyclic Graph, known as a DAG, whose primary purpose is to hold transactions. Unlike a Proof of Work (PoW) blockchain, which enables an entire network to confirm blocks carrying transactions, IOTA’s Tangle does the same via appointing two previous transactions to establish the new transaction. Here is a brief illustration:
In the chart above, transaction number 5 approves transaction number 2 and 3. At the same time, transaction number 6 is unconfirmed and is called a tip. Each incoming transaction will choose tips to approve.
The relatively simple and unique process, however, could lead one serious security lapse. Hypothetically, if an attacker amasses 33% of the hashpower of the IOTA network, he can very well change the underlying algorithm followed by the Tangle nodes. It is possible because hashing happens as instantly as new transactions join the tree. They also get confirmed immediately using a regular laptop.
IOTA has proposed to solve the security issue with Milestones. They are particular transactions issued by a unique node called Coordinator. It is centrally controlled by the IOTA Foundation, which means the responsibility to protect the network solely belongs to the person or organization that has control over the coordinator node.
Limo, in his public outcry, discussed the same problem.
“A consensus was never centralized, but there was and is a single practical point of failure because the coordinator(COO) is a mechanism that, under these conditions, can actively stop the confirmation-rate on the tangle,” he wrote. “Part of that is that no one ever developed a random walk implementation that could circumvent the COO, although they could have.”
Related Reading: Bosch Boosts IOTA with New Device Connectivity for IoT Data Collection
A Solution on the Way
Limo claimed that he spoke to two members of the IOTA Foundation, confirming a solution was on its way to improve the platform’s decentralization aspects.
“The IOTA foundation has solutions for the coordicide,” he wrote. “They are neither approved nor tested, but they are promising concepts that can withstand the first and second logical hurdle.”
Limo explained the foundation is close to launching a much more economical version of their IOTA Reference Implementation. They would carry out the coordicide soon after the launch – tentatively by mid-2019.
“To that day, IOTA will have accomplished its mission. The largest, most uncertain milestone: COO-less decentralization will be reached,” adeed Limo.
The mettle of achieving a true, full-fledged decentralization would likely boost IOTA’s adoption across the entire digital ledger space. It has already attracted partners from all around the world, with its Tangle-concept getting adopted by big companies like Fujitsu, VW, Bosch, and DXC Dach.
Until then, as Limo predicted, the project will continue to function under a centrally controlled environment.
Featured image from Shutterstock.
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Source: New

Bitcoin [BTC] is revolutionary sound money; ICOs and STOs are ultimately centralized, says Bobby Lee

Crypto-savant Bobby Lee, a well-known Bitcoin’s enthusiast in the community, tweeted explaining when to buy Bitcoin and when to sell it.
In his tweet, Bobby Lee explained when to buy Bitcoins, the first being after completely understanding how Bitcoin is a revolutionary form of sound money. Bitcoin revolutionized p2p transactions through its underlying technology, the blockchain, which keeps the records safe and is immutable and it runs on a complete decentralized network, meaning, no central or controlling authority has control over it.

The second reason for buying Bitcoin according to Lee’s tweet was if one didn’t own enough Bitcoin or didn’t own any Bitcoins. The third point insinuates that if the above-mentioned points hold true then one should buy Bitcoin no matter what the price of Bitcoin is right now.
His second part of the tweet pertains to selling Bitcoin. The first reason that Lee explained to sell Bitcoin is after getting a 20x gain. Furthermore, Lee asks not to sell it completely, but rather diversify the investment which is his second point.
Just before tweeting the reasons/timings to buy Bitcoin, Lee sent out a tweet that said that Initial Coin Offerings [ICO]s or Security Token Offerings [STO]s are ultimately all centralized and that the real revolution and the sound money was Bitcoin.

To Lee’s “when to buy Bitcoin?” tweet a user Rafal replied:
“Very good advice but we have to remember that soon or later bitcoin price will start to stabilize and someone who bought for 20k will have to wait quit long to get X 20 profits”
Twitter user Ryan Radloff commented on the STO tweet saying:
“The most important & under appreciated (& valued) companies working on the 2nd layer of #bitcoin are:@Blockstream, @lightning, @RSKsmart, @commerceblock, They are all building “the roads” on top of a predictable rock (bitcoin) not sand (eos tron neo eth etc)”
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Source: AMB Crypto

Ethereum [ETH]’s Vitalik Buterin: Next wave of crypto adoption is not going to be built on hype

Vitalik Buterin, the co-founder of the third biggest cryptocurrency, Ethereum, spoke about the evolution of the cryptocurrency space, in an interview with Smart Valor. He also spoke about the next big wave for the cryptocurrency space for 2019.
Buterin started by speaking about the advancement of the space, remarking that it has “definitely grown a lot.” He added that in 2014, the space was filled with the Ethereum team, a few companies and a couple of people. He went on to say:
“Every time I come here, the space definitely keeps growing and at this point, it’s looking like it’s just huge, you know. There’s just people in all of the different universities get interested in the technology, seeing the interest from just all the sheer number of companies that are based here.”
The co-founder added that the space has witnessed a massive progress. He also spoke about the regulatory environment in the cryptocurrency space, stating that it “seems” to continue to be friendly. Buterin went on to say “it’s definitely great when you don’t have one of those kinds of issues hanging over your shoulders.”
The co-founder elucidated on the price of all the cryptocurrencies. The cryptocurrency has seen a massive drop since it reached its all-time high, with Ethereum even losing it’s second position to XRP. Additionally, most of top cryptocurrencies in the market have lost more than half of their values since the beginning of this year.
On this, Vitalik believes that the space currently requires more “actual applications” of the technology for it to move forward, on which the entire team has been striving to build for a long time. He said:
“Like basically the next wave as of crypto adoption is not going to be built on hype because the hype is basically already come. It has to come from really useful applications and things delivering value to people”
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Source: AMB Crypto

Report: Banks Are More Vulnerable to Terrorist Financing Than Crypto

A risk assessment report released by the Financial Information Unit (FIU) found banks more vulnerable to money laundering and terrorist financing risks than cryptocurrencies, Business Korea reported.
The division of South Korea’s Financial Services Commission researched its domestic financial sector, which includes banks, securities companies, insurers, mutual financing companies, credit card services, and even crypto exchanges. After a thorough assessment, it found that while banks had better systems to repel money laundering and terrorist financing activities, they were yet more exposed to them than any other financial business.
“The banks have better systems against money laundering and terrorist financing than other financial companies,” the study revealed. “Yet the former’s vulnerability is higher due to the larger size of the banking sector and the innate characteristics of their products and services like trade financing, cash management service, and forex trading.”
At the same time, the FIU study noted that transactions involving cash and cryptocurrencies are also vulnerable to the same criminal activities, but cryptos mainly are less likely to be used for terrorist financing.
“The anonymity of cryptocurrency trading hinders tracking, and criminals can take advantage of it,” FIU found. “The same applies to cash dealing as large-denomination bills rarely return.”
Related Reading: Bitcoin is Criminal Money Says the Media While Deutsche Bank Gets Raided for Laundering
Bitcoin Not Popular Among Terrorists
The report of the South Korean financial regulator finds similarities in what Europol said in its Intenet Organized Threat Assessment 2018 report. The 72-page long study also revealed that terrorists were not using cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin. Instead, they were using conventional banking methods to fund their operations across Europe.
“Despite the clear potential, none of the attacks carried out on European soil appear to have been funded via cryptocurrencies,” Europol had found. “The use of cryptocurrencies by terrorist groups has only involved low-level transactions – their central funding still stems from conventional banking and money remittance services.”
A month later, Yaya Fanusie, who serves as the director of analysis for the Foundation For Defense of Democracies Center on Sanctions and Illicit Finance, told the U.S. Congress the very same thing: that terrorists have attempted to raise money via cryptocurrencies, but to no avail.
South Korea Drafts Crypto Bill
The FIU report has indicated the need for a crypto law in South Korea, fearing a surge in money laundering crimes involving cryptocurrencies. Around the same time, a lawmaker has reportedly introduced a bill, called the Digital Asset Trading Promotion Act, to promote the development of crypto exchanges and trading as the whole.
Seoul Finance, a South Korean daily, confirmed that Kim Sun-dong, a member of the National Assembly’s Political Committee, has introduced a comprehensive plan to regulate crypto exchanges without hampering their innovative prospects. Excerpts from the drafted bill were quoted by the publication as follows:
“Those who want to operate a digital asset trading business should have more than 3 billion won [~$2.66 million] in [the] capital, enough manpower, computerized systems, and physical equipment to be approved by the Financial Services Commission.”
South Korea is scheduled to undergo a financial audit by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) starting January 2019 until February 2020. The government is likely to impose capital restrictions should the outcome of the audit become negative.
Featured image from Shutterstock.
The post Report: Banks Are More Vulnerable to Terrorist Financing Than Crypto appeared first on NewsBTC.
Source: New

Coinbase to launch agency-only Over-The-Counter trading after consistent client demand

Coinbase, the poster child for all cryptocurrency exchanges in the US, is launching an agency-only OTC [Over-The-Counter] trading in response to client demand. Coinbase’s Head of Coverage, Christine Sandler, spoke about the launch of the OTC business in an interview with Cheddar recently.
Sandler said that the OTC business would act as a compliment to the Coinbase’s exchange business and said that this could benefit clients who were seeking OTC as an on-ramp for cryptocurrency trading.
Sandler added:
“So we felt that this was a huge benefit to our clients, who can actually leverage both our exchange and our OTC business. So we’re agency only and we have plans to expand the service offering to offer things like delayed settlement and potentially integrating with our custody solution as well.”
She spoke about other institutions that provided the same services like Circle or Genesis and added that the timing was “opportunistic” and that they were just “reacting to their customer requirements”. She also stated that unlike others, they were “matching client orders”.
Sandler spoke about the new initiative of Coinbase custody for asset allocators and said that these asset allocators actually help attract potential partners. She continued:
“So we found that a lot of our institutional clients have opportunities where limited partners are coming in. So asset allocators are actually representing those potential partners…and help educate the limited partners for the benefit of our clients so they can attract those funds.”
Referring to the bear market that has been hanging around the crypto-verse, Sandler said that their “crypto first clients” were staying strong and committed and believed in the technology behind cryptocurrencies. Furthermore, she explained how the crypto-ecosystem has been flooded with volatility and has caused cryptocurrencies to move to the downside and added:
“There’s one small silver lining to this volatility…it is that crypto has been front and center of the mainstream financial media the last few weeks and I think that’s driven and forced a lot of institutions to think if this is an opportunistic investment point for crypto at this point.”
The post Coinbase to launch agency-only Over-The-Counter trading after consistent client demand appeared first on AMBCrypto.
Source: AMB Crypto

Bitcoin [BTC], Tron [TRX] and Binance Coin [BNB] to be used to pay for Pro, ad-free products

BitTorrent Inc., responsible for the development of widely known clients uTorrent and BitTorrent for peer-to-peer file sharing, announced that customers can now pay for Pro and Ads Free products using Bitcoin [BTC], Tron [TRX], and Binance Coin [BNB]. The payments will be using, a cloud-based payment solution for numerous cryptocurrencies, as the gateway.
Justin Tron, the founder of Tron and CEO of BitTorrent, said
“BitTorrent joins a growing list of online companies whose products and services accept TRX as payment. With BitTorrent’s over 100 million users, the move helps increase the use of TRX in online marketplaces while giving consumers more options to unlock value from BitTorrent’s premium products.”
The benefits of going Pro include HD playability, file conversion, fast downloads, and PC protection from malware, and, of course, ad-free usage. The blog post has also detailed how to pay for services using TRX or BTC.
BitTorrent, Inc. is a software company based in San Francisco. Founded in 2004, it uses peer-to-peer sharing technology to enable sending large files over the internet and allows content creators to connect with users. In their own words, “BitTorrent introduces decentralized currencies into one of the world’s largest decentralized applications”.
pxlicious, on Twitter, commented on the development:
“Bye Netflix! Next generation of TVs will be BitTorrent certified.”
Cryptoduck’s insight on Twitter:
“There is inherent value to the BitTorrent brand, and TRON should not miss the opportunity to advertise the names side by side.”
It might well help facilitate the wider reach of TRX. There are potentially thousands, if not hundreds of thousands, of BitTorrent users who have either not heard of TRX, or are otherwise unfamiliar with. This move is expected to lift the adoption rates.
The post Bitcoin [BTC], Tron [TRX] and Binance Coin [BNB] to be used to pay for Pro, ad-free products appeared first on AMBCrypto.
Source: AMB Crypto