Crypto And Blockchain Weekly Wrap Up – 6 May 2019 – 12 May 2019
While there are more than a few hiccups in the form of hacks, bashings, regulatory changes and what not, the cryptocurrency market managed to continue its bullish moment throughout the week. However, the ecosystem also had a fair share of good news as well, let see how was the week that was.
Bitcoin rallies over $6,000 and only days later this week, with Bulls Targets at $6400. The rally aided the token to achieve a market capitalization over $200 billion for the first time in almost six months. After a very long time, the traders have focused on the positives and have disregarded the negative news. Other winners of the week include Ethereum (up 2%), Chainlink (39%), ABBC Coin (46.75%), and Arcblock (116%).
Canaccord Genuity predicts a brighter future for BTC – Financial advisory firm Canaccord Genuity publishes analysis on May 9, predicting that bitcoin (BTC) could hit $20,000 by 2021 as per its retrospective projections. Based on a close similarity between the four-year price cycles of bitcoin during the 2011–2015 and 2015–2019 ranges.
Anti-hack and scam strategies – A group of cryptocurrency trading firms comes together for an initiative targetted at preventing the rising number of hacks and scams in the cryptocurrency industry. The round-table event in Chicago included Ripple, market maker Cumberland, Michael Novogratz’s Galaxy Digital Holdings and over 30 other firms.
One of the standout ideas was creating a list of entities involved directly or indirectly in criminal activities such as money laundering and drug trafficking.
Facebook Coin may be out by Q3 – The very secretive cryptocurrency token by the social networking giant Facebook could go live as soon as Q3 2019, as per a Bloomberg report, which quotes anonymous sources. In addition, Facebook is hiring PayPal staff ahead of the alleged launch.
In addition, just this week the Social media giant updates it’s crypto and blockchain related policy under which the Ads pertaining to blockchain tech, industry news, as well as events and educational materials for cryptocurrencies could now be displayed on Facebook without prior approval. However, advertisers seeking to promote a particular cryptocurrency, and ads for initial coin offerings (ICOs) are still forbidden on the platform, as elaborated by the press release.
Honeyminer comes on MacOS – The mining app from Honeyminer, a New Jersey-based cryptocurrency mining startup is now available on the Apple Macintosh operating system. The said app runs in the background and uses the central processing unit (CPU) and graphics processing unit (GPU) of the computers for mining bitcoin (BTC).
As per the startup, the app includes features such as mining while users’ computer is idle, activity log with current mining statistics, currencies and hardware utilized, and withdrawals among others.
Bitmain cuts back on its mining capacity – Bitmain, the Bitcoin mining giant has been reportedly cutting back on its capacity. As per the hashing power disclosure, that the Bitmain releases each month, the hash rate of all Bitmain-owned hardware running the SHA256 algorithm that the bitcoin and bitcoin cash networks are based on, have dropped down to just 237.29 quadrillion hashes per second (PH/s) as of May 7. Notably, just a month ago, it was at 2,072 PH/s.
Binance Gets Hacked – Binance, the world’s largest crypto exchange by volume have had a “large scale security breach” and reportedly hackers stole more than 7,000 bitcoin through it. As per the post, the exchange discovered the breach earlier on May 7 and found that malicious actors were able to access user API keys, two-factor authentication codes and “potentially other info,” as states by exchange’s CEO, Changpeng Zhao, said in a letter.
The hackers managed to withdraw roughly $41 million in bitcoin from the exchange, according to a transaction published in the security notice.
Coinome shuts down – Coinome, an Indian cryptocurrency exchange announces that it will be halting operations as of May 15, becoming yet another prey to the regulatory difficulties in the country. Indian exchanges have been facing a moratorium on banking services since the central bank, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), exercised a ban on dealings with crypto businesses last year.
With a local media alleging in late April that various government divisions are planning on an absolute ban on crypto in all its forms, things might get worse if the rumors are true.
WeChat Bans Crypto Transactions – WeChat, a Chinese social media giant and payment service provider bans cryptocurrency transactions in its payments policy. The updated policy, that users who engage in cryptocurrency trading will have their accounts terminated.
Mario Draghi trashes Cryptocurrency – European Central Bank (ECB) president Mario Draghi addresses his views about cryptocurrencies at the ECB Youth Dialogue meeting with the winners of the Generation €uro Students’ Award, asserting that “Cryptocurrencies or bitcoins, or anything like that, are not really currencies — they are assets.”
Warren Buffet Bashes Bitcoin Again – Warren Buffet aka Sage of Omaha and a vocal Bitcoin (BTC) basher goes after the flagship cryptocurrency once again. At the Berkshire Hathaway’s annual meeting in Omaha, Nebraska, Buffet announced to the reporters that he still couldn’t support bitcoin.
FinCEN issues new financial regulation policies – The United States Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) issues a new guide for new financial regulation policies concerning Decentralized Applications (DApps). FinCEN notes in the guide’s introduction that it will purportedly clarify and provide examples in order to simplify compliance for entities whose activities fall under the purview of the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA), much simpler.
DeepDotWeb Gets Seized By FBI For Money Laundering – DeepDotWeb, a comparison search system and news site about dark web markets have been seized by the FBI for allegedly being involved in money laundering. The police of five countries arrested the alleged operators, including two Israelis and moderators in France, Germany, and the Netherlands.
All-Time-High Transaction Volume On DApps for Ether – In April, Ether (ETH) volumes on decentralized applications (DApps) have registered a new high, breaking its previous record set last December by a small margin, as noted by Diar in a report. In saying so, the crypto analytics firm pointed out that the new DApps coming on-chain remain significantly low. The new high marks a four-month growth trend in on-chain volumes, with 776,000 ETH transacted.
Bitfinex plans to offer Initial Exchange Offering – Bitfinex, the troubled surrounded cryptocurrency exchange confirms the plan to conduct a $1 billion so-called initial exchange offering (IEO) in a whitepaper. Amidst the ongoing legal scrutiny from the New York Attorney General who accused Bitfinex is using Tether Funds to cover its $850 Million Loss, have had hinted at selling its own tokens earlier this month. The final reveal of the formal whitepaper comes with a few changes from the original rumors.
Notably, the sale of up to 1 billion LEO tokens, each worth 1 tether (USDT), will last until May 11, wherein the date will mark the cut-off point for sales to private investors, while a public phase may begin afterward.
Fidelity to start Institutional Bitcoin Trading soon – Fidelity, United States – based investment firm is reportedly planning to roll out bitcoin (BTC) trading for institutional clients in the coming weeks. The publication cited a source who wished to be anonymous, revealing that Fidelity Digital Assets, a cryptocurrency-focused spin-off by Fidelity will be adding to the existing range of services.
BestChange resumes operations – Popular Russian crypto exchange aggregator BestChange will soon be resuming operations after being blocked by the government. Nikita Zuborev, head of public relations and marketing at the firm, told Forklog that in the coming days the block is expected to be lifted following a court hearing.
BestChange website was blocked by Russian telecommunications watchdog Roskomnadzor (RKN) on March 12 after an order from a district court in Omsk, Russia’s seventh largest city.
Blockchain use cases
Bitcoin Lightning App for Apple Watches – Bluewallet, one of the most popular lightning network wallets launched a new app for Apple Watches on Sunday, that will enable the Apple smartwatch users to receive bitcoin’s experimental lightning payments with just a few taps. A sneak peek of the app was released through a tweet, weeks ago by Bluewallet and as of today, the app is officially downloadable from the iTunes store.
Letter Of Credit Transactions On R3’s Blockchain – Over 50 banks hailing from 27 countries on six continents, participated in the simulation of letter of credit transactions on R3’s blockchain platform. Dubbed as Voltron, 96% of the participants asserted that the system will purportedly accelerate and reduce the cost of their letters of credits procedure, as per the release. Also, 86% of them reportedly find the inefficiencies of the traditional system as increasingly intolerable.
Tokenized Government Bonds – Currency.com, a global exchange website announces that it will soon add a tokenized form of Belarussian government bonds on its platform. As per the release, the users could use fiat money or cryptocurrencies bitcoin (BTC) and ether (ETH) to invest and trade in Belarussian government bonds. Reportedly, Currency.Com Bel LLC is the first organization to tokenize government bonds.’
Blockchain-powered system for Malta’s Registry of Companies – Malta’s Registry of Companies purportedly plans to run on a blockchain-powered system. The Registry of Companies is basically a public registry that holds official information and documentation pertaining to new and existing companies. The agency branched off from the Malta Financial Services Authority’s (MFSA) as a separate entity at the end of last year. Malta Independent asserts that the new agency will be run on a blockchain-based system.
New Azure Blockchain Development Kit For Ethereum – Microsoft announces the release of a new Azure Blockchain Development Kit specifically for the Ethereum blockchain, in an official blog. An extension to Microsoft’s source-code editor Visual Studio Code, the new offering has been reportedly designed to aid app developers using Azure Blockchain Service, Microsoft’s newly-released blockchain-as-a-service (BaaS) platform.
Blockchain To Manage Wireless Spectrums – One day, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) might be using blockchain to monitor and manage wireless spectrums to support the growing requirements of the internet of things (IoT). Juniper Research predicts that there will be 50 billion connected IoT devices and sensors by 2022. With that in mind, the agency is keen to find a way to manage the required radio frequencies more efficiently and transparently.
These are some major updates for the week, we will see you next week with more updates, controversies and both positive and negative news off course.