Blockchain Daily News – Edition 136, 26.01.2018
January 26, 2018
Blockchain Daily News – Edition 138, 30.01.2018
January 30, 2018

Blockchain Daily News – Edition 137, 29.01.2018

Blockchain Daily News

by Florin Oprea

Edition 137, 29.01.2018

Exchanges & Trading Venues

Japanese Cryptocurrency Exchange Loses More Than $500 Million To Hackers

Evelyn Cheng – CNBC

Coincheck to Repay Users Who Lost Money In $400 Million Hack

Yuji Nakamura – Bloomberg (subscription)

The Coincheck Hack And The Issue With Crypto Assets On Centralized Exchanges

Reuters Staff – Reuters

Hackers have stolen roughly 58 billion yen ($532.6 million) from Tokyo-based cryptocurrency exchange Coincheck raising questions about security and regulatory protection in the emerging market of digital assets.

FAO: Coincheck’s management declared that the NEM coins were sitting in a “hot” wallet…Well, excuse me but $500m in a “hot” wallet is an invitation to robbery…No wonder that Japan’s financial regulator is planning to check all the country’s cryptocurrency players, read below.

Japan Raps Coincheck, Orders Broader Checks After $530 Million Cryptocurrency Theft

Taiga Uranaka & Thomas Wilson – Reuters

Japan’s financial regulator said it would inspect all cryptocurrency exchanges and ordered Coincheck to get its act together after hackers stole $530 million worth of digital money from its exchange in one of the  ber heists on record.

Japanese Crypto Stocks Unfazed by $500 Million Coincheck Heist

Min Jeong Lee – Bloomberg (subscription)

Cryptocurrency-related stocks rallied in Japan even as news of a $500 million heist at an exchange run by Coincheck Inc. spawned security concerns about digital money.

FAO: Don’t worry, I don’t get it either…

Cryptocurrency Markets Are Juicy Targets for Hackers: Timeline

Andrea Tan & Yuji Nakamura  – Bloomberg (subscription)

The $500 million heist of digital tokens from Japanese exchange Coincheck is remarkable for its sheer size, but thefts in the lightly regulated world of cryptocurrencies are woefully frequent.

FAO: I am sure you recall at least a dozen reports last year – use our FREE ARCHIVE.

People Show Huge Interest In Robinhood Crypto, But Skeptics Worry It Will Just Fuel The Bubble

Evelyn Cheng – CNBC

More than half a million showed interest in Robinhood’s no-fee cryptocurrency trading product. That surge of interest has quickly brought out the critics: skeptics of bitcoin’s skyrocketing price and Robinhood’s ability to provide fair prices for customers. But if Coinbase was able to become a leading U.S. cryptocurrency exchange with high fees, it’s unclear what could stop Robinhood Crypto’s growth.

Credit Card Companies Don’t Want You to Buy Bitcoin With Plastic

AnnaMaria Andriotis & Paul Vigna – The Wall Street Journal (subscription)

Some banks and credit-card companies have begun restricting customers’ purchases of bitcoin, shutting down a popular way to buy the volatile digital currency.

FAO: I agree with the banks on this one. Don’t go into debt to buy cryptos.

Deals & Investments

Investors Rush Into New ‘Blockchain’ ETFs, Pouring In $240 Million In A Single Week

Evelyn Chang – CNBC

The cryptocurrency craze is finally flowing into the ETFs business. Investors poured about $240 million into two blockchain-focused ETFs since their launch last week, according to the latest available data from FactSet. Blockchain is the technology behind bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.

FAO: Still just the beginning…Let’s compare figures a year from  now.

Cryptocurrencies

Japan’s Central Bank Sees No Need To Mint A Digital Currency

Toru Fujioka & Masahiro Hidaka – Bloomberg (subscription)

Cash is still king in Japan, and that means that the central bank doesn’t see a need to mint a digital currency for now, according to Yuko Kawai, the head of the FinTech Center at the Bank of Japan.

FAO: Interesting attitude. At the same time, here’s a question for some world leaders or central bankers: why spend resources on a state-owned digital currency instead of “going with the flow” and accepting the existence and use of decentralized digital currencies? Regulate them and get your taxes but don’t oppose innovation and progress.

Tether Confirms Its Relationship With Auditor Has ‘Dissolved’

Marc Hochstein  – CoinDesk

Tether said its relationship with audit firm Friedman LLP has ended.The statement, provided by a company spokesperson, confirms the suspicions of online sleuths and is likely to raise new questions about the company’s finances.

IOStoken: Next-Gen Virtual Coin Takes Cryptocurrency Market By Storm

Sputnik News

A new innovative and secure blockchain, called IOStoken (IOST), is a solid infrastructure, which offers online service a completely decentralized way to exchange online services and digital goods and the ability to support a massive number of users.

Starbucks Chairman Howard Schultz Big on Cryptocurrency, Just Maybe Not Bitcoin

Craig Giammona – Bloomberg (subscription)

Starbucks Chairman Howard Schultz said he believes digital currency will catch on with consumers, though not necessarily Bitcoin.

Vendors

Strix Leviathan Wants To Build A Better Enterprise Platform For Crypto Trading

Frederic Lardinois – TechCrunch

We are now seeing the emergence of a new class of B2B startups in crypto, too (think Trading Technologies and TradeDesk). Among the newest entries in this business is Seattle-based Strix Leviathan, which is building a crypto-trading platform for large entities like hedge funds, banks and traditional enterprise companies that don’t want to have to build their own trading infrastructure.

Fintech Provider Broadridge Says Blockchain Has Potential To Redefine HK Capital Markets

Karen Yeung – SCMP

Fintech provider Broadridge Financial Solutions is developing blockchain-based applications that are expected to benefit its clients in the Asia-Pacific capital markets, including Hong Kong’s by helping them save costs, improve efficiency and reduce risks.

Hackers Hijacking CPUs To Mine Cryptocurrency Have Now Invaded YouTube Ads

Rhett Jones – Gizmodo

Cryptojacking is a relatively new malware issue that has gradually become a widespread problem. Bad actors are injecting a piece of JavaScript into websites and advertisements that harnesses a victims CPU to mine cryptocurrencies. The latest network to be targeted by cryptojackers is Google’s advertising service on YouTube.

BitPeople

How Chinese Bitcoin Buyers Are Getting Around Government Ban

Joseph Young -The Cointelegraph

Chinese citizens are still investing in Bitcoin and the cryptocurrency market despite the government’s heavy crackdown.

DNT: Yeah, it’s an interesting phenomenon how Chinese crypto – investors managed to avoid Chinese restrictions by using Hong Kong-based exchanges after three of China’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges relocated their business there.

You Don’t Need To Be In A Major Tech Hub To build A Cryptocurrency Community

Edward Weniger – Venturebeat

It’s safe to say that digital currency is no longer a niche subject. Since hitting 4.9 million users in November 2016, Coinbase has nearly tripled its user base in the last year. Of course, Bitcoin’s meteoric rise is driving much of the recent interest, impacting hundreds of other digital currencies.

SeekinG Fool’s Gold, Young People Jump Into Cryptocurrency Frenzy

Yonhap News Agency

Prices of cryptocurrencies in South Korea have shown signs of correction for weeks since the government unveiled a series of measures to prevent speculative investment into virtual coins. At a bitcoin community site on Naver, the nation’s largest Internet portal, there are a growing number of panicking young people losing money over cryptocurrencies. The site boasts 416,488 members.

Latest Developments & Agreements

Part One of Ethereum’s Sharding Roadmap Is Nearly Done

Rachel Rose O’Leary – CoinDesk

“It seems like part one of phase one is getting something like being already done,” Vitalik Buterin said in a developer meeting.

FAO: They’re getting there…

Regulation

Massive Cryptocurrency Heist Spurs Call for More Regulation

Yuji Nakamura & Andrea Tan  – Bloomberg (subscription)

Regulators are grappling with booming crypto markets.

FAO: Coincheck’s heist, the biggest in the “cryptoverse”, is a strong argument that, at least regarding aspects of security, these markets clearly need more regulation.  

Bitcoin Can Be Called An Asset, Just Don’t Call It Money, Swedish Central Banker, Cecilia Skingsley, Says

Ryan Browne – CNBC

Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are “not a very good version of money” due to their volatile nature, the deputy governor of Sweden’s central bank, Cecilia Skingsley, said. She also said that digital currencies were not an efficient store of value or means of exchange, but conceded that they could be called assets instead.

Thailand Taking Steps To Regulate ICOs

Lubomir Tassev – Bitcoin.com

Thailand’s SEC and the Stock Exchange of Thailand are discussing a comprehensive regulatory framework that will cover fundraising through ICOs.

Events

1,500 Blockchain Enthusiasts Descended On San Francisco And It Was Total Chaos

Ari Levy – CNBC

More than 1,500 people attended a blockchain conference in San Francisco, but the theatre holds less than 1,000. Blockchain 2018, a chaotic mishmash of hardcore developers with wild ideas, nouveau investors with money to blow and overcrowded conferences with — at least in some cases — lousy logistical sense.

FAO: CNBC says dozens of blockchain conferences are taking place every month across the globe. Must be a good business, right?

Analysis

Four Triggers Could Cause A Huge Cryptocurrency Crash

CNBC

If cryptocurrencies are, in fact, in a bubble, then what could make it burst? Julian Hosp, the co-founder and president of TenX, explores some possible answers.

FAO: More and more voices bring Tether suspicions under discussions, especially after today’s story in “Cryptocurrencies”.

Forget The West – Blockchain Will Have The Biggest Impact In Emerging Markets

Oscar Williams-Grut – Business Insider

The biggest potentially for blockchain technology is in developing markets not developed markets, according to Paul Domjan, global head of research, analytics & data at investment bank Exotix.

Other news

One Thing Is Clear From Davos, Blockchain Is Out Of Beta

Dante Disparte – Forbes

Blockchain is slated to transform the world, or so its adherents proclaim.

Opinion

Regulators And Investors ‘Are Just Waking Up’ To Cryptocurrency, And Davos Blockchain Co-Chair Jamie Smith Has Some Advice

Kellie Ell – CNBC (video)

Regulators and investors alike are just beginning to understand what cryptocurrency is, says Jamie Smith, president of the Global Blockchain Business Council. The organization helps regulators understand blockchain technology and other cryptocurrencies.

 

FAO: Florin Adrian Oprea, Editor-in-chief Blockchain Daily News

DNT: Decebal Nicolaie Todarita, Editor Blockchain Daily News