Daily News Digest Featured News

Tuesday May 22 2018, Daily News Digest

new currency taxonomies
Image Source: The BIS (Bank for International Settlements) report

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United States


European Union

China/Hong Kong




News Summary

United States

Coinbase Has Nearly as Many Customers as Fidelity Investments (CCN), Rated: AAA

As a not-so-typical startup in the Valley, Coinbase is exploding with customer growth. The exchange now manages over 20 million customer accounts, which is nearly as many as Fidelity Investments and twice as many as Charles Schwab, according to a report by the Washington Post.

0x V2 Update to Support Ethereum ERC-721 Token Swaps (CryptoSlate), Rated: AAA

The decentralized exchange protocol, 0x, announced a significant update in the form of V2. With a projected launch of July, the newest version brings some exciting features for trading tokenized assets.

By creating a standardized protocol for exchanges to operate on, 0x essentially provides the ability for anybody with the prerequisite resources to create an entirely new decentralized exchange platform for themselves.

The protocol operates as a series of smart contracts on the Ethereum mainnet, with the first deployed in August 2017. Current there exist 15 layers 0x relayers, the protocols name for supported DEXs, consisting of big names such as AugurMakerand Request Network.

New Standards for Collectable Assets

While version 1.0 of the 0x protocol focused primarily on the burgeoning ERC-20 token ecosystem, the latest update has placed a significant focus on the economy of unique collectible assets.

0x version 2.0 also brings support for new signature types, expanding beyond Ethereum ECDSA scheme allowing the exchange to support EIP-712, Trezor and will provide users the ability to define their verification functions within smart contracts.

0x protocol
Source: CryptoSlate


Is 0x Being Pumped with Coinbase Speculation? (Finance Magnates), Rated: A

The big news in the cryptocurrency community now is that 0x could possibly be included on the biggest cryptocurrency exchange in the US. But is there any basis to this?

There is some speculation that the coin could be listed on a major America cryptocurrency exchange, which is significant because if true it will likely cause this price to rise.

The exchange in question is GDAX, a major cryptocurrency exchange operated by Coinbase of San Francisco. It is the 12th biggest cryptocurrency exchange in the world, processing $140 million in orders daily according to coinmarketcap.com.

Will Bitcoin Use as Much Electricity as All of Austria by the End of the Year? (SingularityHub), Rated: AAA

An analysis published in the journal Joule this week predicts the Bitcoin network could be using 7.67 gigawatts of electricity by the end of the year. That’s half a percent of the world’s electricity and the same amount used by the whole of Austria.

Figure 1

The Estimated Number of Terahashes per Second (Trillions of Hashes per Second) Performed by the Bitcoin Network

Bitcoin Network
Source: Blockchain.info

Read the full report here.

There’s a ‘decent probability’ bitcoin goes to zero, says Vanguard economist (MarketWatch), Rated: A

In an op-ed Monday, Joe Davis said bitcoin BTCUSD, -2.10%   is not a currency, it makes for a poor investment choice and its biggest threats are the very institutions it was meant to overthrow.

“Over the past few months, I’ve gotten this question more than any other,” wrote Davis. “As for bitcoin the currency? I see a decent probability that its price goes to zero.”

Bitcoin bull argues for rally to $ 20,000 (MarketWatch), Rated: A

Despite the sluggish start to the week, some bulls remain unbowed. Rodrigo Marques, chief executive of Atlas Quantum, one of Brazil’s largest crypto trading platforms, said in an email to MarketWatch that the move under $8,000 was an interim low for bitcoin, adding that he expects bitcoin to reach $20,000 in six months, recapturing levels it hasn’t approached since December.

Bitcoin Won’t Encourage Cryptocurrency For Real Estate, But Cryptoeconomics Will (Forbes), Rated: AAA

However, while there are a handful of homes currently listed for sale in Bitcoin, some believe that using Bitcoin for real estate transactions will not result in widespread adoption — At least not until the real estate industry starts to utilize blockchain technology, which in turn will drive the adoption of cryptocurrency transactions.

Cryptoeconomics lays out the framework for the way in which cryptocurrency ecosystems thrive and function across a decentralized network, known as the blockchain. These ecosystems are able to allow a number of entities who do not know one another to reliably reach consensus across an anonymous, trustworthy network through the use of cryptocurrencies. This is achieved by using a combination of economic incentives and basic cryptographic tools.

For example, the international real estate marketplace, Propy, applies cryptoeconomics by incentivizingindividual users to join the Propy platform to list properties, share properties on social media, upload title history into the system and more.

Bitcoin cash is a must-own, says crypto investor Brian Kelly (CNBC), Rated: A

Cryptocurrency investor Brian Kelly said Monday bitcoin cash is the must-own digital currency of the moment.

On Saturday, bitcoin cash miners met to discuss funding for a bitcoin cash development fund, he told CNBC.

In the fund, miners are “going to take some of the rewards they get from mining and put it in a fund to build stuff on top of bitcoin cash,” Kelly said on “Fast Money.”

Should the Federal Reserve Issue a Cryptocurrency? One Fed Leader Thinks So (RealDaily), Rated: A

Former U.S. Federal Reserve governor Kevin Warsh believes that the monetary authority should consider minting a government-regulated cryptocurrency of its own, to be called “FedCoin.”

Warsh said that if had returned to the Fed, he would have put together a team to brainstorm how to create a FedCoin.

ivyKoin Inquire About Banking Licenses (PYMNTS), Rated: A

At the same time ivyKoin, a payments startup, in recent weeks had meetings with officials from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. about the same topic. The executives didn’t only discuss obtaining a banking license at the meetings, the firms also discussed their business models, noted the Wall Street Journal.

Cryptocurrency and a stock market boom pushes TradingView to $ 37 million in new funding (TechCrunch), Rated: A

Fueled by last year’s greed-inducing visions of a cryptocurrency boom and a stock market largely untethered from classical economicsTradingView, a developer of social networking and data analysis tools for financial markets, has raised millions in new venture funding.

The New York-based company just scored $37 million in funding led by the growth-stage investment firm Insight Venture Partners .

Bitcoin Brokerage Denies Tezos ICO Involvement in Court Filing (CoinDesk), Rated: A

Cryptocurrency brokerage Bitcoin Suisse AG has filed a motion to dismiss its involvement in a class-action lawsuit launched against the Tezos Foundation and other entities, saying it had nothing to do with the startup’s 2017 initial coin offering (ICO).

In a filing entered last week at the U.S. District Court in the Northern District of California, the brokerage stated that, while it provided blockchain project Tezos with some cryptocurrency conversion services, its actions should not be grouped with those of the company as regards the claims in the lawsuit being brought by Tezos investor Bruce MacDonald.

Walmart Looks to Blockchain for Retail Product Resales (CoinDesk), Rated: A

A new patent application from retail giant Walmart shows how blockchain could be used to augment its digital offerings for consumers.

The document, released last Thursday by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, outlines a blockchain ledger which would track the items that stores sell to a particular customer. It’s the latest example of an intellectual property play by Walmart, which has filed a number of related applications and has also piloted the tech for tracking food products.

Paycent – A Mobile Wallet – Adds Support for Digital Currency Dash (Smartereum), Rated: A

Dash – a payment-focused digital currency – has been integrated into Paycent (Texcent Asia’s mobile wallet app). The digital currency is now available to users of Paycent and the firm’s network of 36,000,000 merchants worldwide. Merchants and users can convert, sell, and buy Dash with fiat currencies and other types of digital currencies. This announcement was made by the company on Wednesday.

Furthermore, Paycent also provides a Dash-to-Fiat instant liquidity functionality for local merchant payments.

Graft: smart contracts will reduce factoring costs (FreightWaves), Rated: A

Jordan Graft, Executive Vice President of Payments at TBK Bank, explained the banking and factoring sector’s interest in blockchain-based smart contract technology to a large audience of transportation and logistics executives at the Blockchain in Transport Alliance’s (BiTA) spring symposium.

In Graft’s example, a publicly traded 3PL with a net thirty payment cycle could have a 19.7% return on invested capital, where a net zero cycle would only yield 8%, making the logistics company much less attractive to shareholders and potential investors.

Technology has already driven factoring rates down from about 5% to around 2%, and Graft says that blockchain, and especially the systems integration from common data standards, has the potential to move that number even lower. “Instead of 3 guys in a garage charging 5 percent, you’ll see rates come down in a dramatic way,” said Graft.

Jose Canseco Needs A Lawyer For An ICO That Merges Celebrity Crypto With Unwanted Hugs (Dealbreaker), Rated: B

Source: Dealbreaker


The Smart Justice service is an innovative and community-driven way to resolve disputes in the crypto industry. Top-50 FinTech company, BANKEX, launched the beta version of its service on the 14th of May as a way to introduce complete partiality during these disputes.

NJ orders three online cryptocurrency promoters to stop offering unregistered securities in the state (Planet Princeton), Rated: B

State officials issued emergency orders today to stop three online cryptocurrency-related investment entities from fraudulently offering unregistered securities in New Jersey.

Cease and desist orders were issued to the Bullcoin Foundation (also known as Bullcoin Gold), Trident (also known as the Trident Crypto Index Fund) and Springcryptoinvest as part of “operation cryptosweep,” an international crackdown on fraudulent initial coin offerings and crypto currency-related investment products.


RSK Bitcoin-Based Smart Contract Platform Now Secured by 1 in 10 Miners (BTCManager), Rated: B

RSK Labs cofounder Gabriel Kurman announced that one of ten miners now secured a smart contract solution built by the company on the Bitcoin blockchain. RSK, formerly known as Rootstock, will bring smart contracts, a key feature of the ethereum blockchain, to the world’s largest and most popular cryptocurrency, bitcoin. The news came at Consensus 2018, the fourth annual blockchain summit from May 14 to May 16, 2018, at the New York Hilton Midtown.

SaTT Project Offers Smart Contracts, Oracles For Digital Ads (NewsBTC), Rated: B

A new Smart Advertising Transaction Token project (SaTT), developed by the US-based company ATAYEN, leverages the blockchain platform to make the digital advertising market more transparent and efficient. The project’s team plans to present its smart contract within the platform, which will allow advertisers to choose publishers, set up conditions for advertising campaigns and track its performance with the help of third-party analytical tools. At the same time, the SaTT smart contract suggests automatic payment to the publisher once all the conditions are fulfilled.

CurrentCoin Announces Digital Software Deployment Solution Powered by Ethereum Smart Contracts (CurrentCoin Email), Rated: B

CurrentCoin today announced that its Ethereum-powered, website-building solution is now a working prototype available to consumers and businesses. The company also revealed that its token presale has raised more than $2.5 million to date.

Brickschain and ULedger enable blockchain record system for construction (CoinWisdom), Rated: B

ULedger, and enterprise blockchain company aiming to bring trust and transparency to data, today announced Brickschain will be using its technology to introduce the first blockchain-based construction management system.


Ripple (XRP) Investment Surges as Male Dominate the Cryptocurrency Market-Study (CryptoRecorder), Rated: AAA

Ripple has the potential to surpass all major coins in term of reach, appeal and value. Ranked 3rd by market cap, the coin volumes in the market are souring showing the intent to overtake the market leaders. With the anticipated possible rebranding and the delinking of the Company from the XRP coin might turn the tables for the movers and shakers in the crypto-landscape.

A recent study by one of the most respected and popular social trading network eToro indicates Ripple (XRP) leads in the market as the natural investment choice.

According to the eToro study, 81.96% of traders getting into the digital money investment market are new in the investing circles. Those with prior experience in investing only account for 7.38% a clear indication of lack of awareness in the market.

Out of the increasing number of investors, the market is split 91.5% and 8.5% males and females respectively.

National Government Digital Currencies Versus Globally Distributed Cryptocurrencies (CoinTelegraph), Rated: AAA

Many governments are worried about the mass adoption of cryptocurrencies and hence are considering the merits of creating a central bank digital currency (CBDC).

The mainstream media often wrongly refer to government backed digital currencies as cryptocurrencies without defining the new concept of central bank digital currency.

Central bank issued digital currency is based on a fractional reserve banking system based on debt and the liability of increasingly highly indebted nation state central banks.

new currency taxonomies
Source: The BIS (Bank for International Settlements) report

The promise of central bank digital currencies

Central Bank digital currencies or CBDC for short is meant to be an extension of existing central bank issued fiat money.

CBDC is not a well-defined term. It is used to refer to a number of concepts. However, it is envisioned by most to be a new form of central bank money. That is, a central bank liability, denominated in an existing unit of account, which serves both as a medium of exchange and a store of value.

taxonomy of money
Source: The BIS (Bank for International Settlements) report

One Major Reason Cryptocurrencies Haven’t Gained That Global Adoption Just Yet (ZyCrypto), Rated: A

Though seems natural, it’s been a decade, and we haven’t still seen up to 5% of the world’s’ population has a deep interest in wanting to use cryptocurrencies. Why? This would be the most reasonable question to ask at the moment.

Different financial experts have had different things to say on this but of recent, John Rainey, who’s the present Chief Financial Officer for PayPal (a global online payment processing system which supports money transfers and also serves as the alternative to paper money), in a bid to promote PayPal said the cryptocurrency market is a highly volatile one. This reason he says has been behind why the majority hasn’t adopted cryptocurrencies.

TrueUSD (TUSD) Officially Launches on Binance with Increased Supply (cryptovest), Rated: AAA

TrueUSD (TUSD) kept its dollar peg, only rising slightly to $1.02, at the launch of official Binance trading. At one point, the asset spiked to $1.10, but quickly corrected its position. This time, the spike was much lower, while a few days ago the price of TUSD was distorted by bots to as high as $1.30.

TUSD volumes have risen to around $12 million in 24 hours. At the launch of Binance trading, the asset also saw its supply increase to more than 18 million tokens – a significant growth in the past months, given that TUSD launched with around 4 million tokens.

US and Canadian Securities Regulators Coordinate ICO Probe in ‘Operation Cryptosweep’ (CoinTelegraph), Rated: AAA

US and Canadian state and provincial securities regulators have opened probes into potentially fraudulent crypto investment programs in what has been dubbed “Operation Cryptosweep”, according to a press release May 21. The latest crackdown on suspicious crypto investment products is reportedly the largest such coordinated investigation by state and provincial officials.

Regulators from across 40 jurisdictions coordinated by the North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA) have initiated up to 70 investigations, with more to come in the following weeks. Securities regulators have reportedly warned as many as 35 companies about violations of state securities laws with some cases resulting in cease-and-desist actions.

How Bitfinex’s Tax Requirement May Have Contributed to the Bitcoin Price Correction (CCN), Rated: AAA

In response to the statement of Whalepool, the Bitfinex team noted that it has “deliberately targeted users” that it believes have an obligation to self-disclose and emphasized that only a portion of the Bitfinex user base was asked to disclose their tax identification and personal information.

Until this month, the gains tax imposed on cryptocurrency trading was 45 percent, which was decreased to 19 percent by France’s Council of Statebecause investors were not willing to disclose their earnings just to be taxed 45 percent.

According to CryptoCompare, a cryptocurrency market data provider, Bitfinex remains as the biggest bitcoin-to-USD exchange with more than 29 percent of the market share.

Bitcoin-USD volume
Source: CCN

The period in which Bitfinex sent out its official statement to its clients coincided with the fall in the price of bitcoin on May 17, when the bitcoin price reached a two-month low at $7,925. It is highly likely that the price drop of bitcoin was largely caused by Bitfinex and the sell-off of investors on the platform trading the bitcoin-to-USD pair.

Bitfinex’s tax warning sparks angry responses (Crypto News Reviews), Rated: A

In a message sent out to many, but apparently not all, of its users it outlined their requirement to submit their tax information – which, it made clear, will then be handed over to British Virgin Island (BVI) bureaucrats so that it can be passed on to other governments around the world. The announcement sparked ire among some, as this tweet below reflects.

Source: Crypto News Reviews

Volatility: The Necessary Evil Of Cryptocurrency And How To Handle It (CoinTelegraph), Rated: A

Part of what has cemented cryptocurrencies on the map since they exploded into the mainstream investor market has been their volatility. Investors flooded to the likes of Bitcoin when, through November and December 2018, the value of the cryptocurrency increased in value exponentially.

However, such volatility is a two-edged sword, and the cryptocurrency market has shown that in 2018 with Bitcoin’s price shedding more than 50 percent at times from its year end price of $13,000.

500 companies unite in Enterprise Ethereum Alliance to set blockchain standard (Crypto News Review), Rated: A

A group of 500 companies – including Accenture, AMD, Intel, JP Morgan, Microsoft, Samsung, Shell and UBS –  has put together version 1.0 of its standard for a business-centric distributed ledger tech based on the Ethereum Blockchain.

ICOs Don’t Seem So Scary Outside the US (CoinDesk), Rated: A

ICO issuers are starting to look to jurisdictions outside the U.S. to set up shop.

This is perhaps unsurprising – as the world’s biggest economy it also has the most rules. Regulators in the U.S. would much rather err on the side of caution, even if that means curtailing some of the excitement.

For instance, representatives from Switzerland, Lichtenstein and Gibraltar spoke to the crowd, both assuring listeners that their nations took an extremely responsible approach without quite the aggressive fretting of U.S. rule-makers.

Representatives from Lichtenstein argued that the small country has a large enough regulatory staff to work with companies it hosts and help them build businesses that are still within its regulatory framework. Meanwhile, representatives from Gibraltar said that its regulators have done the work to build rules from the ground up that specifically fit the new world of cryptocurrency and blockchain.

4 Great Industries for Blockchain Advancement and Forward-Thinking Entrepreneurs (Entrepreneur), Rated: A

1. EdTech

Because e-learning requires a digital exchange of goods — a credit card payment in return for an instructional video download, for example — it often needs to be tied to central gatekeepers such as expensive universities or online learning platforms. These companies have the technological infrastructure to support exchanges and provide educational content while taking a cut of revenue.

Blockchain, however, allows reliable direct provider-to-consumer transactions. No third-party is required to process or verify a transaction between a blockchain e-learning provider and a remote learner, as blockchain’s immutable ledger automatically validates and secures the sale.

2. MedTech

Electronic medical records keep the same information as their paper counterparts and in theory, can easily transfer between offices. In practice, however, clashing formats and patient permissions inhibit smooth information flow. There are 26 different electronic medical record systems in use in the city of Boston, for example.

Blockchain has the ability to provide a universally accessible and shareable format for storing medical records.

3. Real Estate

Blockchain has the ability to help consumers regain power over the real estate market. Real estate transactions could rely on the security of blockchain ledger to work outside of powerful groups such as NAR.

4. Lead Generation

AI algorithms can rapidly process millions of data points to identify trends and correlations humans would struggle to synthesize.

Ways New Investors Can Learn Crypto Trading (Stocks Gazette), Rated: A

Only a limited number of websites really provide fact-based, objective news and information worth reading. The following 7 websites are among the best.


The website provides info-graphics and important details about cryptocurrencies and exchanges. Unlike other websites, Coinmarketcap.com focuses on daily trading volumes and market capitalization.

The website has a search engine where you can search any cryptocurrency, token or trading volumes of any of the top 9,592 exchanges.


This is arguably the most popular, best rated, authoritative cryptocurrency website in the world. More than 10% of people who follow cryptocurrency news online have read at least one article on this website. Founded in 2013, Coindesk commands a following of 10 million unique visitors every month. More than 150,000 people have subscribed to the site’s newsletter and 450,000 others follow its news coverage on social media.


This website reviews initial coin offerings.

To ensure every startup gets an objective review, ICOs on ICO bench are reviewed by a team of up to 20 industry experts. Each expert is a leader in the blockchain and provides enough reasons for their reviews.


This is one of the few cryptocurrency websites without adverts. The writers here focus on providing in-depth, fact-based guides about anything related to cryptocurrencies without distracting you with annoying ads.


This website provides news and conference schedules for anything relevant in the cryptocurrency industry. They also provide information guides about cryptocurrency wallets, ICOs, and exchanges. Additionally, Crypto Ninjas provides relevant information about government policies, links to trading sites and charts about cryptocurrency market caps.


If you find the graph-based analysis on coinmarketcap.com a little bit intimidating, this website details the same information in a table format. More than 1500 cryptocurrencies are listed on the website. Each cryptocurrency is accompanied by their price in USD, hourly trading volumes; daily, weekly and up to 90-day trading volume analysis.


This website is up there with Coindesk in terms of popularity. The website mainly focuses on explaining cryptocurrency related terms, reviewing wallets, offering guides and providing investors with important skills about trading.

Five interesting facts about crypto mining (Brave New Coin), Rated: A

China is the largest crypto miner

China maintains about 60-75 percent of the bitcoin mining network and, according to Chinese media, 600 bitcoin miners have been seized in the northern municipality of Tianjin, on the grounds of “electricity theft.”

Mining costs keep increasing

According to an EliteFixtures study South Korea is the most expensive country for mining a single Bitcoin, with costs coming in at $26,170 per coin; whereas Venezuela, where the cost per token is just $531, is the cheapest.

PoW v PoS – the reality of the consensus landscape 

In terms of consensus algorithms Brave New Coin’s General Taxonomy for Cryptographic Assets shows 30% of cryptographic assets are using PoW, 18% PoS, 8% a PoW-PoS hybrid, and 4% were using novel mechanisms such as Burstcoin’s ‘Proof of Capacity’ and NEM’s ‘Proof of Importance.’ Around 40% are issued, either as interim tokens or Protocol Tokens. 

Canada’s green mining revolution

Canadian firm Hydro Quebec hosts 30 large cryptocurrency miners on its network.

The evolution of bitcoin mining chips

So far, there’s been four phases of Bitcoin mining:

  1. CPUs 2009 – 2011
  2. GPUs. 2011-2013
  3. FPGAs 2011
  4. ASICs. 2013 onwards

MEWKit Malware Attacks Ethereum Wallets Steals Crypto Automatically (Bitcoin Exchange Guide), Rated: A

RiskIQ is a security research firm for cryptocurrency, and they’ve spotted one of the latest attacks on traders with crypto wallets. There has been a new phishing attack established that is going after Ethereum wallets that no investor can even spot. The criminal group, MEWKit uses ATS (automated transfer system) to empty out the user’s MyEtherWallet on the platform, stealing the currency.

The many ways banks are using blockchain (American Banker), Rated: A

At Consensus 2018, FedEx CEO and founder Frederick W. Smith said “blockchain has the potential to completely revolutionize trade across borders.” The Deloitte survey of over 1,000 global executive attitudes noted 43% said blockchain is one of their top-five strategic priorities.

blockchain banks

Securing Sensitive Medical Data with Blockchain Technology (the-blockchain.com), Rated: A

After raising $20M, REMME seeks to create a secure framework for user authentication for many industries, including Medtech.


The modern investor doesn’t like to read long and boring White Papers. They prefer to watch YouTube videos!

So now we are developing the unique ‘YouTube ICO Chart Channel’!

Bitcoin.live Set to Transform Bitcoin and Cryptocurrency Trading Education (Core Communique), Rated: B

New Bitcoin and cryptocurrency platform, Bitcoin.live, has today announced its global launch date. Designed to give any trading strategy a unique edge, the educational platform will be live from 4th June and will revolutionize the way in which mainstream audiences consume and learn about the cryptocurrency sphere.

Exscudo Launches The First App To Combine Crypto Wallet And Messenger (MustTech News), Rated: B

Exscudo is excited to announce our newest great product Exscudo Channels App which is the first app combining payment and communication functionalities on the global market. It is a tool for sending money and messages from any mobile device, outreaching every existing payment and communication solution.

European Union

Ethereum Network Congestion Doubles Gas Fees as Game dApps Capture $ 7.5M in 24 Hours (CryptoSlate), Rated: AAA

The Ethereum distributed app ecosystem is currently experiencing explosive growth, with Etherueum dApps capturing over $7.5 million USD across 500 different applications and 11,000 users in the last 24 hours. While increased use of the Ethereum blockchain is arguably a good thing, however, the surge in transaction throughput has caused congestion, doubling Gas fees.

Cardano’s CEO hopes to overcome Bitcoin and Ethereum in a year (FXStreet), Rated: AAA

Cardano (ADA) has recovered from the low reached at $0.2295 on May 18, but the upside momentum is fading away on approach $0.26 The coin lost over 6% amid general market sell-off.

Cardano’s CEO Charles Hoskinson is very optimistic about the future of the coin. He believes that Cardano will beat both Bitcoin and Ethereum within a year because the team behind the project concentrates the efforts in technological improvement.

Source: FXStreet

Cardano venturing into new territories with VR enabled Blockchain education (Global Coin Report), Rated: A

Virtual Reality has come a long way and currently, there are all sorts of VR experiments going on in the education space where the technology is being used to explore and study virtual concepts as tangible objects. In fact, the Cardanoteam is already at work in this sector.

Cardano is making bold moves into these uncharted territories with a bid to create the first of its kind 3-D environment that will enable users to navigate and explore tangible concepts of Blockchain technology.

Unintended Consequences of GDPR Threaten Blockchain, Domain Name IDs (eWeek), Rated: AAA

The Parity ICO Passport Service (PICOPS) has announced that it’s last day of business will be May 24, 2018, which is the day before the European Union’s GDPR goes into effect.

Unfortunately for PICOPS, using blockchain to store personal information breaks some key requirements of the GDPR. For example, Article 5 of the GDPR requires personal information to be processed lawfully, fairly and in a transparent manner, but with blockchain there’s no transparency because everything is encrypted.

The GDPR requires that anyone can request that their data be deleted in their right to be forgotten. But blockchain data cannot be deleted—ever. It also can’t be changed if the information is wrong, another requirement of the GDPR.

The GDPR requires that personal data collected by an organization be the responsibility of the Data Protection Officer. But the distributed ledger in a public blockchain has no such person and no real provision for a DPO. There’s also no one in charge of processing individual data.

ASK.fm is one of the largest question and answer social networks in the world. The company’s recent announcement of the sale of its utility token (ASKT) has left many people wondering why a company that has been around since 2010 would make such a dramatic shift. Now, it has become clear that the company sees an initial coin offering (ICO) as its opportunity to take a leap into the decentralized economy. ASK.fm plans to do this by tokenizing social interactions within its network.

Norges Bank does not rule out launching digital currency (Central Banking), Rated: B

Norges Bank has said it is “too early” to decide whether to launch a central bank digital currency (CBDC), given unanswered questions about the design and purpose of its introduction.

But the Norwegian central bank has not ruled it out.

United Kingdom

Prestigious London College Terminates Ties With IOTA Foundation Due to Legal Threats (CCN), Rated: AAA

University College London, better known as UCL has officially terminated its ties with the IOTA Foundation as a response to the legal threats made by IOTA foundation against cybersecurity researchers.

A UK trading platform is launching a crypto exchange pitched at banks and hedge funds (Business Insider), Rated: A

LMAX said it developed the new “LMAX Digital” venue at the request of clients who wanted access to cryptocurrencies like bitcoin and ether. Clients will be able to trade bitcoin, ether, litecoin, ripple, and bitcoin cash on the exchange, which will operate 24 hours a day and seven days a week.

China/Hong Kong

As bitcoin world wobbles, mining rig company plans $ 2 billion IPO (Reuters), Rated: AAA

Bitcoins are worth less than half of what they were in December. Mining them is 60 percent less profitable than it was in 2017. Even retailers of hobbyist mining rigs say they are seeing fewer customers.

Why, then, is Canaan Inc, a leading cryptocurrency mining rig supplier, looking to raise up to $2 billion, according to two sources with knowledge of the deal, in the world’s biggest bitcoin-focused initial public offering to date?

China’s IT Ministry: 2017 Saw ‘Exponential’ Blockchain Growth (CoinDesk), Rated: A

Nearly 40 percent of all Chinese blockchain startups emerged in 2017 alone, according to a new white paper published by China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology.

Revealed by the ministry’s Information Center on Monday, the blockchain industry paper indicates that currently China has 456 startups that focus on blockchain technology development and applications as part of their core business. While the number of new blockchain firms in 2016 had tripled compared to that in 2015, 2017 saw “exponential” growth, it says, with a total of 178 newcomers to the space.

Former OKEx Chief Joins Rival Cryptocurrency Exchange Huobi (CoinDesk), Rated: A

Chris Lee, the former CEO of Hong Kong-based crypto exchange OKEx, has announced he is joining rival platform Huobi as its vice president of global business development.

Alibaba Founder Bullish About Blockchain But Doesn’t Care For Bitcoin (CryptoSlate), Rated: A

Jack Ma, executive chairman and founder of Chinese tech juggernaut Alibaba, stated while he’s bullish about blockchain technology, Bitcoin is in a bubble.

Meet Plair (PLR): The First ICO to Come from VeChainThor (usaCommerce), Rated: B

The VeChainThor network isn’t fully launching until the end of June, but we now already know the first token set to launch on this upcoming blockchain system. It’s called Plair (PLR), and it’s a digital token network focused on eSports.


Australians lost over AU$ 2.1m to cryptocurrency-related scams in 2017 (ZDNet), Rated: AAA

A report from the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has found many Australians fell victim to cryptocurrency scams last year, with approximately AU$2.1 million in losses accrued by those chasing the digital currency dream, or paying a virtual ransom.

Coinbase to support BAT token as they look ahead? (finder), Rated: A

According to an analyst from The Edge Analysis Group, the only coin that has been approved for use in the App Store is the Basic Attention Token (BAT) – an ERC20 token. Interestingly, BAT’s creators say the token is not a security and, therefore, not subject to the same regulatory scrutiny from the Securities and Exchange Commission in the US as other tokens.


Australian ​Department of Health using blockchain for medical research records (ZDNet), Rated: B

Australian secure cloud provider Vault Systems and blockchain startup Agile Digital have combined forces to provide the department with an immutable record for tracking health data research.


Korbit says goodbye to DASH, Monero [XMR], Zcash [ZEC], REP, STEEM (AMBCrypto), Rated: AAA

On 21st May, South Korea’s first and largest Bitcoin exchange platform, Korbit announced on its official website that the buying and selling functions for Dash [DASH], Monero [XMR], Zcash [ZEC], Augur [REP], and Steem [STEEM] is terminated.

Exclusive Interview: Stephen Xu, Former Lead Developer for QTUM (CryptoSlate), Rated: A

In 2017, Stephen left Tencent and joined Patrick Dai as Lead Developer for the QTUM Foundation where he began his work on the hybrid smart-contract platform for decentralized applications development (dApp) and established himself as an early expert in blockchain integration utility.

Ex-Lead Developer for QTUM, Stephen Xu believes scalability is the primary issue surrounding current smart contract platforms.


Startup companies are also part of the growing blockchain revolution in South Korea. CLC Foundation recently launched Calorie Coin, a fitness-themed cryptocurrency project. Participants mine Calorie Coins by participating in fitness activities.

Thai SEC Holds Focus Group to Clarify New Crypto, ICO Regulations (CoinTelegraph), Rated: B

Thailand’s Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) held a focus group on cryptocurrency regulation today, May 21, streamed on Facebook Live. The hearing focused on the SEC’s approach to crypto-related businesses and fundraising through Initial Coin Offerings (ICO), local news outlet Siam Blockchain reports.


Russia’s Largest Bank Conducts $ 12 Billion Transaction Using Smart Contracts (BTCManager), Rated: AAA

According to an official release on May 16, 2018, Russia’s largest bank, Sberbank, recently utilized a Hyperledger Fabric-based smart-contract system to issued rouble-backed bonds for a transaction.

The development saw Sberbank CIB, the investment division of Sberbank, the National Settlement Depository (NSD), and MTS, a Russian telecom operator, come together to conduct a RUB 750 billion bond issue, equivalent to $12.15 billion.

Why are there so many Russians in crypto? (Quartz), Rated: AAA

Around the world, Russian accents are commonplace at ICO pitch competitions, where the people behind projects seeking financing try to entice investors. But their influence isn’t immediately obvious in the numbers: The US, Singapore, Switzerland, and UK are leaders when it comes to ICO money raised. The same is true when measured by the locations where projects are registered (pdf).

But when you look at where the CEO or founder of ICO-seeking projects is based, Moscow came out on top last year, according to venture capital firm Atomico:

ICO russians

Crypto innovation is coming out of Russia because it has some of the best intellectual capital in the world, said Oliver Hughes, chairman of Tinkoff Bank, a digital lender based in Moscow. Even Sberbank, Russia’s biggest bank, behaves like a fintech firm, he said. Sberbank reportedly has more than 11,000 developers, which is more than all the employees at Snap, Square, and Twitter combined.

Latin America

Bytecoin (BCN) Team Reschedules Hard Fork, Clarifies BCN Is Not A Pump And Dump (Ethereum World News), Rated: AAA

With respect to the scheduled Hard-fork of the coin to simplify the software, the BCN team has decided to reschedule the event due to the issues during the Binance listing. The main purpose of the hardfork as earlier stated, is to simplify the code, improve P2P protocol, and introduce dynamic fees.


SA’s first ATM for Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies in action (Business Insider), Rated: AAA

South Africa’s first cryptocurrency ATM has been installed at a Spar in Johannesburg. The ATM allows users to buy Bitcoin, Ethereum and Litecoin with cash. But you can’t make any withdrawals.

George Neophytou, manager of the store, is also a keen cryptocurrency entrepreneur. He is a partner of the blockchain technology group Vendibit, which focuses on software and hardware support for blockchain technologies.

Dash Supporting Healthy Communities in Africa (Truth in Media), Rated: A

Dash Africa is one of a several grassroots efforts coming from the Dash community. The grassroots efforts in places like Africa take community outreach to the next level while increasing awareness of Dash around the globe.

Dash Africa is supporting the Dash Leopards soccer team; they are working to enable a better life for kids in Africa through sports, education, and social activities. Thanks to Dash, soccer program founder Coach Ricardo— along with the other coaches— use soccer as a tool to help the players achieve comprehensive life skills.


Africa has long proven itself to be a popular place for cryptocurrency growth and adoption, with many African consumers adopting cryptocurrencies in their daily lives.

Neu-Ner’s opinion on Bitcoin was positive but not as bullish as his opinions on the other cryptocurrencies he covered. He stated that he believes the price of Bitcoin will still “continue to go up, slowly and in a stable way.”

The Crypto Trader host pointed out that he has high hopes for the Ethereum project, calling the “thousands” of members of the Ethereum community “the smartest people in the room.”

Bitcoin’s nemesis, Bitcoin Cash, also got a mention on the Crypto Trader show with Neu-Ner expressing his interest for the coin when he mentioned their “strong team” and sees potential in the project.

Finally, Neu-Ner mentioned Ripple, the enterprise payment platform that has blown-up to become the third largest cryptocurrency over the past 4 years.

Zimbabwe’s Central Bank Bans Cryptocurrencies- 60 Days to Comply (Crowdfund Insider), Rated: A

The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe has ordered all financial institutions in the country to cease trading, holding and transacting cryptocurrencies and to, “exit any existing relationships with virtual currency exchanges within sixty days.”

The Zimbabwean inflation rate, which has increased 19-fold since last August, produced a huge disparity in Zimbabwe last fall, when one Bitcoin traded for about $6000 US on most global exchanges, but cost $9000 inside the country.

South Pacific

A Future Full of Cryptocurrency Hot Spots (usaCommerce), Rated: AAA

One story that has gotten a lot of media attention in recent days is centered around the country of French Polynesia – where Tahiti can be found. It was only a matter of time until something like this was dreamed up by some tech visionary: a floating island that governs itself using cryptocurrency.

It is a pilot program called the Floating Island Project, and the French Polynesian government is a partner (alongside Blue Frontiers and Seasteading Institute). About 300 homes will be constructed on a floating mass that uses a crypto coin called Varyon – the first step in a journey to using blockchain to build places to house climate refugees. It is expected to be completed by 2022.

Own a stake in the future floating crypto city with Varyon (AMEinfo), Rated: A

But since 20% of each platform is reserved for open/green space, issuable space would cost $504 per square foot ($5425/square meter).

This concept is based on 11 modules, which could host 225-300 full-time residents when combined, with an additional 50 hotel beds. The total projected cost would therefore be approximately $167 million.

Varyon (VAR) via the Ethereum chain (1 ETH = 14,750 VAR), ERC-20 token, “is a general purpose payment token for the exchange of goods and services in the Blue Frontiers ecosystem, other ecosystems, and between token holders.

Blue Frontiers says the ICO presale is available today for the first 4,000 ETH with bonuses from 5% to 15%. The public sale will take place in June. There will not be bonuses in the public sale.

Distribution is 4-28% in Public sale, 7-8% Presale, 5-6% Blue Frontiers seed funders, 10-15% Blue Frontiers team, and 45-72% to the project itself.


George Popescu
George Popescu
Allen Taylor
Allen Taylor

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Allen Taylor

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