Daily News Digest Featured News

Wednesday October 24 2018, Daily News Digest

UK crypto investing
Source: CryptoGlobe

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News Summary

United States

Cryptocurrency giants Coinbase and Circle form joint venture to boost adoption of dollar-backed digital coins (CNBC), Rated: AAA

Two of the largest cryptocurrency companies, Coinbase and Circle, are joining forces to establish more ground rules in the quickly evolving asset class.

The start-ups announced a joint-venture known as the “CENTRE Consortium” on Tuesday, which they say aims at speeding up adoption of cryptocurrencies backed by actual government currencies like the U.S. dollar.

Authorities approve Coinbase Trust to Offer Custody Services (Captain Altcoin), Rated: AAA

DFS has also approved Coinbase Trust to offer secure custody services for six of the largest virtual currencies: Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, Ether Classic, XRP and Litecoin.

Bitcoin Price Stuck at $ 6.4K But Eyes Gains Against Altcoins (CoinDesk), Rated: AAA

Bitcoin (BTC) is again lacking clear directional bias, but may soon pick up a strong bid against ethereum and other altcoins, according to intermarket analysis.

The leading cryptocurrency is now trading in sideways around $6,400 (price as per Coinbase) for the eighth day running, and is struggling to find buyers – despite having charted a bullish inverted hammer last week near the key support of $6,000.

BTC USD
Source: CoinDesk

Bitcoin Price Analysis: Time to Grab some Bitcoin at any Price, First Targets $ 8,500 (NewsBTC), Rated: AAA

Traders should mark Oct 22 as a turning point for Bitcoin. Thanks to CFTC giving the ICE the permission to launch Bitcoin Futures and the rumors of SEC approval of Van Eck Bitcoin ETF approval, investors are vibrant. Because of this, it’s likely that Bitcoin shall rally confirming the break out patter of week ending Oct 22.

Bitcoin weekly chart
Source: NewsBTC

Payments Company Square Open-Sources Its Bitcoin Cold Storage Tool (CoinTelegraph), Rated: AAA

U.S. payments processing company Square has announced that it is open-sourcing its Bitcoin (BTCcold storage solution in an official blog post published today, Oct. 23.

Uncharted Bitcoin OTC Markets Gear Up For Institutional Inflows (Forbes), Rated: AAA

As the entrance of institutional players into the crypto space continues to draw nigh, the market for a murky off-exchange form of trading known as over-the-counter is becoming an increasingly critical lynchpin to the cryptocurrency ecosystem.

Because cryptocurrency exchanges typically lack the technological infrastructure and the liquidity required to execute large block orders, big buyers and sellers are effectively forced to find one another by venturing into Skype chatrooms hosted by proprietary trading firms like Cumberland, private messaging platforms like Telegram and even public forums like LinkedIn.

Breaking up a large sell order of, say, 1,000 bitcoins, could send an adverse signal to the market and trigger what’s known as slippage – whereby the price of a trade at execution is different than the expected price.

Litecoin (LTC) is a dead man walking and not because of its price (Captain Altcoin), Rated: A

Being dubbed the silver to Bitcoin’s gold, Litecoin was introduced in 2011 as a quick fix that was supposed to solve some problems typical of Bitcoin. With new projects flooding the market in the recent years, Litecoin’s role seems to be thing of a past – LTC is the odd man out and nobody can bring about a solid argumentation for Litecoin’s purpose in the future. And the reason I think Litecoin is dead is not because of its price – it dropped together with the whole market and not by its own fault. The reason is lack of unique value proposition – it is just blunt copy of bitcoin with couple of parameters changed.

Ripple Co-Founder Invests in New Cryptocurrency from Digital Currency Pioneer David Chaum (CCN), Rated: A

When historians set out to chronicle the development of cryptocurrency, one of the first chapters will profile DigiCash, the early digital currency startup which, decades before Bitcoin, almost fulfilled the dream of giving the internet a native currency. However, that project’s inventor, cryptography pioneer David Chaum, wants his name to appear in the book’s subsequent chapters as well.

Chaum, now 63, is launching a new cryptocurrency project called Elixxir, which he claims has achieved the holy grail of network decentralization, blockchain security, and transaction speed.

Elixxir has announced that the project has received a strategic investment from Chris Larsen, the co-founder of blockchain startup Ripple and, by virtue of his Ripple equity and remaining XRP holdings, one of the wealthiest persons in cryptocurrency.

This app turns your spare change into bitcoin — and Kevin O’Leary invested $ 100,000 (CNBC), Rated: A

Dmitri Love walked into the Tank Sunday seeking $100,000 in exchange for a 10 percent stake in his company, Bundil, a platform that lets people turn their spare change into crypto.

On Sunday’s episode of ABC’s “Shark Tank,” one entrepreneur found a way to simplify the process — and got Kevin O’Leary to invest six figures.

Alibaba wins preliminary trademark injunction against cryptocurrency Alibabacoin (MarketWatch), Rated: A

Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding Limited has won a preliminary injunction against cryptocurrency firm Alibabacoin Foundation.

The legal victory centers on the use of the company’s name, or likeness, purportedly to promote the foundation’s similarly named virtual currency, according to Oct. 22 court documents in the U.S.’s Southern District of New York.

The case follows an attempt in April, which was denied on the grounds that “Alibaba has not met its burden to establish a reasonable probability that the Court has personal jurisdiction over Alibabacoin,” which is listed as being based in both Dubai and Belarus.

Smart Contracts & Their Potential Tax Implications (Lawyer Monthly), Rated: A

As new transaction payment methods enabled by digital technology – such as smart contracts – become more pervasive, they raise complex taxation issues. These include considerations of what type of tax is relevant, and in what tax jurisdiction any given tax must be paid.

“Call of Duty” Players Remotely Stole $ 3.3 Million in Cryptocurrencies (NewsBTC), Rated: A

A group of “Call of Duty” players from Indiana are accused of stealing more than $3 million in cryptocurrencies after coercing an Illinois man to aid them in remotely hacking unsecured crypto wallets on more than 100 cell phones.

Oracle delves deeper into blockchain with four new applications (TechCrunch), Rated: A

The four applications involve supply chain-transaction data including a track and trace capability to follow a product through its delivery from inception to market, proof of provenance for valuables like drugs, intelligent temperature tracking (what they are calling Intelligent Cold Chain) and warranty and usage tracking. Intelligent Cold chain ensures that a product that is supposed to be kept cold didn’t get exposed to higher than recommended temperatures, while warranty tracking ensures that a product was being used in a proscribed fashion and should be subject to warranty claims.

SEC Suspends Securities Trading for Nevada-Based ICO (Unhashed), Rated: B

press release from the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has announced the suspension of securities trading for a Nevada-based firm, which had made false claims of being “under SEC Regulations.” The company in question, American Retaili Group Inc., aka Simex Inc., had stated in two press releases to have partnered with an SEC-qualified custodian for the use of crypto transactions and a purportedly registered public offering of preferred stock, the press release explains.

Police Filings Mount as Investors Demand Funds from WEX Exchange (CoinDesk), Rated: B

Users of the long-troubled cryptocurrency exchange WEX have begun filing police reports after more than three months of being unable to withdraw major cryptocurrencies or fiat, CoinDesk has learned.

Former Intuit And Google Executive Joins U.S. Digital Currency Marketplace HBUS As General Counsel (PR Newswire), Rated: B

HBUS (www.hbus.com), the exclusive U.S. strategic partner of Huobi (www.huobigroup.com) today announced Tiffani McCoy as General Counsel. McCoy previously served as the Assistant General Counsel at Intuit, where she drove new business initiatives while helping the company navigate complex regulatory frameworks on a global scale. Before Intuit, McCoy held leadership positions at Google and Yahoo!.

Elon Musk Mocks Bitcoin Security And Scams With Tongue-In-Cheek Tweet (Forbes), Rated: B

Musk last night tweeted a tongue-in-cheek reply to a question on Tesla account two-factor authentification, suggesting he takes the issue of security and scams seriously but giving no details of how he might handle Tesla account security.

Elon Musk Twitter bitcoin

The reply to the Tesla related question resulted in Twitter locking Musk’s account because the social network “thought [he] had been hacked,” though it was swiftly reactivated.

International

Binance Secures New Funding From Vertex Ventures (CoinDesk), Rated: AAA

The Vertex Ventures network, a 30-year-old group of venture capital funds, have made a strategic investment in Binance and will work with the exchange to set up a new branch in the city-state, they announced Tuesday.

The centerpiece of the plan is the creation of Binance Singapore, a fiat-to-crypto exchange, as well as other fiat-crypto services in Southeast Asia, according to press statements.

Ripple Report says Blockchain is reaching critical mass in global payments (Finextra), Rated: AAA

Recently Ripple launched its “Blockchain in Payments Report 2018”.  Main finding of this Report was that global payments based on this technology is reaching critical mass this year.

Blockchain and cross border payments

The Ripple report showed, a fast majority of respondents acknowledged that improvements in cross border payments can be made, especially in regards to the pre-funding system and real-time gross settlement (RTGS), and that may help expand business scope and sale.

Blockchain’s potential

Of these benefits speed ranked first (42%), followed by greater geographic access (40%), cost reduction (38%) and, improved transparency (36%).

Respondents in the financial and broker area show the strongest recognition of blockchain’s potential: 60% were very interested; followed by FinTech (47%); and, banking (46%). Based on the services provided remittance providers showed the strongest recognition of blockchain’s advantages (49%).

The Report findings also showed that approx. a quarter of those involved in payments will be implementing a blockchain product or solution sometime in 2020. Accelerated adoption and progress will be seen in the following two years towards 50% in 2022. This signals interest to mass adoption is fast approaching.

Which Major Country Will Be The First To Truly Adopt Cryptocurrency? (Nasdaq), Rated: AAA

The race to be the first country to adopt a digital currency is over. Already, the Marshall Islands have created their own cryptocurrency as a form of national legal tender. Though the country only has a population of 60,000, it’s garnered a lot of attention.

These are the main obstacles:

  1. Consumer preparation.
  2. Regulation and oversight.
  3. Volatility and stability.
  4. Scalability and longevity.
  5. Privacy and traceability.

Some world powers are global advocates of cryptocurrencies. They have formally recognized Bitcoin and/or other cryptocurrencies as legitimate means of exchange, and in some cases, legally recognized investments. Countries in this category include the United States, Canada, Australia, England, Spain, Sweden, Finland, and Norway. There’s also one of the most crypto-friendly nations in the world, Japan, which has passed a law that accepts Bitcoin as legal tender.

Cryptocurrencies Slip as Bitcoin Holds $ 6,500 (Investing.com), Rated: A

Cryptocurrencies traded slighted lower on Tuesday and bitcoin hovered around $6,500 while investors continued to digest the recent wave of regulatory news.

Bitcoin fell 0.11% to $6,535 at 11:45 AM ET (15:45 GMT) on the Bitfinex exchange.

Visa Rolls Out Distributed Ledger-Based B2B Connect (cryptovest), Rated: A

Digital payments provider Visa Inc. is gearing up for the official launch of its B2B Connect in the first quarter of 2019. Visa B2B Connect is a distributed ledger-based platform intended to provide financial institutions with a fast, secure and straightforward way to process cross-border business-to-business payments across the globe.

Coordinated Global Regulation of Cryptocurrencies Needed: Circle CEO (Insurance Journal), Rated: A

Major economies should launch coordinated regulation of cryptocurrencies, the head of Goldman Sachs-backed startup Circle said on Monday, underscoring growing industry support for international rules on digital money.

“Ultimately there needs to be normalization at the G20 level of critical crypto-related regulatory matters,” Jeremy Allaire, CEO of Boston-based Circle, told Reuters in an interview in London.

Crypto Exchanges And ICOs Are Evolving Into New Entities (Forbes), Rated: A

Today, the initial coin offering market is in turmoil with some ICOs closing down. Others are prolonging their capital raising with the hope that the market will pick up. However, this is unlikely to happen soon as new patterns are beginning to emerge from the rubble.

Trading volumes will increase on decentralized exchanges (DEX)

Several top exchanges are working on transitioning to non-custodial trading, from Binance DEX to Coinbase acquiring Paradex, to Bitfinex’s Ethfinex Trustless0x, a DEX protocol that is not associated with any centralized exchanges has also been gaining momentum with their recent V2 launch.

SmartChart — Introducing the World’s First Integrated end-to-end Blockchain Development Platform for Enterprises (Markets Insider), Rated: A

SmartChart, an innovative blockchain and smart contract technology solutions company, today announced the launch of Smart Developer™ & Smart News Analytics™, which provides an intuitive cloud-based Integrated Development Environment (IDE) for smart contract development and real-time tracker for breaking news related to specific crypto-currencies & tokens respectively.

SmartChart’s integrated end-to-end development platform — comprising smart contracts, Dapps & Blockchain-as-a-service (BaaS) — offers a scalable, secure and robust solution for enterprises to test the applicable blockchain use cases and evaluate potential return on investment. The need for an integrated and scalable blockchain development platform is going to be increasingly important as a recent Statista study projects that the global market for blockchain technology will grow from US$548.2 million in 2018 to US$2.31 billion by 2021.

CoinText Expands SMS Crypto Wallet to Brazil and Four European Markets (Finance Magnates), Rated: A

CoinText.io, a cryptocurrency wallet service that allows users to transact Bitcoin Cash (BCH) via text messages, has expanded into four new countries including Brazil and three European markets – Poland, Croatia and Romania.

European Union

Binance Lists Decred, DCR Pumps 25% to 11 Week High (Ethereum World News), Rated: AAA

There can be no better boost for an altcoin than a listing announcement from a major exchange. They don’t come much bigger than Binance which Tweeted its latest listing a couple of hours ago; Decred.

While the rest of the cryptocurrency market still languishes in a static sideways channel, Decred has taken off this morning, shooting for the moon. According to coinmarketcap.com DCR has surged nearly 25% in less than two hours since the announcement. It is currently trading at $46.58, its highest level since early August.

Ethereum, Parity Co-Founder Announces Blockchain Framework for a ‘Multi-Chain World’ (CoinTelegraph), Rated: A

Blockchain infrastructure firm Parity Technologies’ founder Gavin Wood demoed a live blockchain launch in just fifteen minutes at the Web3 Summit in Berlin Oct. 23, TechCrunch reports.

The blockchain framework demoed by Wood is dubbed “Substrate,” and is a framework for building blockchains and the underpinning tech of Parity’s “Polkadot” protocol – a form of “para chain” that links between many different types of blockchains – which is slated to be released at the end of 2019.

BAT Sustains Breakneck Rally to Record a 56 Percent Increase This Week (Smartereum), Rated: A

BAT (which is the acronym for Basic Attention Token) reportedly recorded a 14 percent increase against the USD this Monday. It went on to briefly eclipse the $0.30 barrier before finding solace in its current value at $0.287. As of the time, this report came to light the crypto token had a weekly return of 56 percent, which is higher than the best return attained by the top 50 digital assets.

Will Decentralization Powered By Blockchain Allow Greater User Privacy? (Forbes), Rated: A

Back in September, an article entitled “Decentralization: the Next Big Step for the World Wide Web” appeared in the Guardian. In the piece, columnist Zoë Corbyn juxtaposes the internet’s present state of ultra-centralization with a promising movement being headed by Tim Berners-Lee to return it to its decentralized roots.

The Mysterious Case of a Cold Wallet Becoming “Hot”: USD 7.5m Stolen (cryptonews), Rated: A

Hackers may have gotten away with almost USD 8 million worth of digital assets from what Swiss crypto exchange Trade.io claims is cold storage devices held in safety deposit boxes.

“The breach was limited to one particular hardware wallet that was purchased directly from the manufacturer. Consequently, no customer accounts were directly affected, or customer funds lost,” according to an announcement by Trade.io.

TIO
Source: cryptonews

Spanish Government Approves Draft Law to Require Crypto Investors to Reveal Holdings (CoinTelegraph), Rated: A

Cryptocurrency investors governed by Spain could face mandatory reporting of their holdings for tax purposes under a new draft law the government approved Friday, Oct. 19, local daily news network ABC reports.

Solo Energy partners with SolarCoin to help increase independent solar power adoption (SolarCoin Email), Rated: B

Solo Energy, creator of the Virtual Power Plant of the future, today announced its new partnership with the SolarCoin Foundation. Solo has entered the SolarCoin ecosystem as a registered affiliate, meaning that that it will provide solar photovoltaic (PV) owners that become part of its Virtual Power Plant network with the support they need to understand and adopt SolarCoin.

United Kingdom

Capital Sets the Trend for UK Crypto Investing, Study Shows (CryptoGlobe), Rated: AAA

Londoners are, on average, twice as likely to have invested in cryptocurrency than any other region in the UK, a new study has revealed. The research, commissioned by Swiss fintech company Crealogix, looked at investment habits across the country, with residents of the capital being the most active in the market by a considerable margin.

The study found that almost one in 10 Londoners have moved more than £100 into crypto in the past 10 years, with the second highest rate of investment seen in Yorkshire and the Humber, where 1 in 15 residents having invested to the same level. The North West and East Midlands had the lowest likelihood to invest, with only 1 in 50 from those regions having put a significant amount of money into crypto.

UK crypto investing
Source: CryptoGlobe

The study also found that on a scale of income between £15,000 to over £75,000, respondents earning middle incomes between £45-55,000 were most likely to invest in crypto.

uk consumer percentage of crypto investors
Source: CryptoGlobe

PlusOneCoin made a cryptocurrency for upvotes (TechCrunch), Rated: A

A team of developers have made something called PlusOneCoin, a clever cryptocurrency that essentially allows owners to upvote content on two financial sites, ADVFN and Investorshub. The idea — to reward people for accessing content and, more importantly, interacting with it — is something many services like Steemit have tried and failed to pull off.

CryptoCurve Announces New Featured Integrations With Aion and ICON (BusinessWire), Rated: B

CryptoCurve is excited to announce it will be expanding integration at the protocol level to all members of the Blockchain Interoperability Alliance, connecting the CryptoCurve ecosystem with Aion and ICON in addition to existing integration with Wanchain. This integration will allow users of CryptoCurve’s applications to benefit from the scalability and interconnectivity of the Blockchain Interoperability Alliance.

China

Bitfinex Removes 630 Million Tether (USDT) From Crypto Market, As Token Falls Below $ 1 (CryptoGlobe), Rated: AAA

Bitfinex has reportedly been sending huge amounts of Tether (USDT) tokens to cold storage vaults. This has raised even more concerns among crypto market participants regarding its operations – which regulators have been closely monitoring for nearly a year now.

HTC launches its blockchain-focused phone, but you can only buy it in cryptocurrency (CNBC), Rated: A

HTC unveiled its flagship blockchain-focused smartphone on Tuesday, the Exodus 1, as the struggling manufacturer looks to shift its strategy to focus on new technology.

The Taiwanese phone maker said it developed its own cryptocurrency wallet called Zion to make its new phone function as a hardware cryptocurrency wallet.

Cryptocurrencies Still Need States for Stability (Caixin), Rated: A

Virtual-currency advocates claim that through decentralized arrangements, state intervention can be avoided, thereby achieving currency stability and price stability.

However, no country’s economy is inseparable from changes to monetary policy, which require a centralized institutional arrangement. This is the paradox that the so-called digital currencies bring: People must decide between pursuing currency stability and using monetary policy to regulate the economy.

Australia

Ripple open to collaboration with big fintechs (Bob’s Guide), Rated: A

At Swift’s flagship Sibos conference in Sydney, Australia, Ripple’s head of strategic accounts, Marcus Treacher, discussed the firm’s strategy going forward into 2019.

Nevertheless if Swift was open to collaboration, would Ripple contemplate it?

The further we go on the Ripple journey the less important a collaboration with Swift becomes. That’s because we’ve started with a very clean sheet.

What area is Ripple specifically attacking and planning to attack?

The white space that is currently underserved is P2P remittance, the SME space and the midmarket. As the Ripple proposition is adopted, people will behing to ask what else they can use it for. If you can exchange value worldwide in a matter of seconds with complete certainty, then that can be overlaid onto trade propositions; the stack starts to build very neatly. We really are replumbing the financial system.

Asia

From Coinstack to Aergo: South Korea’s Enterprise Blockchain Sector Is on the Rise (Blockonomi), Rated: AAA

Though South Korea’s crypto markets have weathered their share of regulatory storms, their enterprise blockchain space has managed to gain momentum relatively unopposed. However, the sector’s development has also been quiet. Their biggest blockchain startup, Blocko, just hasn’t gotten much outside recognition. Currently, the company runs Coinstack, a blockchain-as-a-service platform that helps companies integrate new technology into their current systems. They’re in the process of transitioning over to a new platform, AERGO, which will bring them into a more public-facing position.

Oxfam in Sri Lanka Will Use Ethereum to Deliver Microinsurance (CoinDesk), Rated: A

Oxfam in Sri Lanka, part of the non-profit group focused on alleviating global poverty, has teamed up with blockchain startup Etherisc to help bring affordable insurance to paddy rice farmers.

Qbao Network Wallet Enables Free Conversion of QBT between QRC-20 and ERC-20 (PR Newswire), Rated: A

QBT (Qbao Token, originally a QRC-20 token) is the utility token of Qbao Network wallet and plays an important role in Qbao Network’s blockchain ecosystem. QBT has been listed on twelve crypto-exchanges, including Gate.io, Exx, etc. In order to expand the footprint and engage with Ethereum developer communities, Qbao Foundation has decided to enable QBT’s free cross-chain convertibility between QRC20 and ERC20 at an exchange rate 1:1 from Oct 15th, 2018.

CoinStats launches exclusive chat service for crypto investors and teams (Crypto News Review), Rated: B

Crypto tracking app CoinStats has announced a new chat feature with which crypto owners will be able to interact with each other on the platform.

CoinStats users currently own over $5 billion in cryptocurrency, with the app now the top service for tracking crypto portfolios with 500,000 active users.

Eurasia

ICO Services to be Offered on the Russian Financial Market, Sberbank Ensures (Coin Idol), Rated: AAA

State-owned Sberbank together with the NSD have finished their pilot project dedicated to ICO testing and are ready to share the results.

MENA

Blockchain Startups In Israel Have Tripled: Why Israel Can Become A Leading Blockchain Nation (Forbes), Rated: AAA

Israel is known as the World’s Startup Nation, so it shouldn’t come as a surprise that the number of blockchain startups in Israel has tripled since the beginning of this year. According to new findings from the Israeli Blockchain Association, there are now more than 200 blockchain startups based in Israel, making the country positioned to become a leading blockchain nation.

Bitcoin’s 10th anniversary: its dominance will decline, but crypto market will rise by 5000% (Fintech Finance), Rated: A

Bitcoin’s influence and dominance of the cryptocurrency sector will “drastically reduce” in its second decade, with the crypto market likely to expand by “at least” 5000% in the next 10 years.

These are the bold forecasts from Nigel Green, founder and CEO of deVere Group, one of the world’s largest independent financial advisory organisations, which launched deVere Crypto, the pioneering cryptocurrency app earlier this year.

Africa

Africa’s Blockchain Potential Untapped, But How Can It Be Implemented? (Forbes), Rated: AAA

One needs to look back at why, and when, Bitcoin and blockchain came into being. It was 2008, post the latest global financial crisis, and there was a feeling that a better system would be needed. One where banks are not fully in control. Satoshi Nakamoto wrote an eight page white paper that introduced the world to blockchain and digital cash, but he also spawned a massive libertarian movement.

Canada

National Bank of Canada Pilots Blockchain to Combat ‘Complex’ Processes (CoinTelegraph), Rated: AAA

A major Canadian commercial bank will use blockchain to simplify the process banks use to issue transactions, a press release confirmed Oct. 21.

Caribbean

Caspian ICO Raises $ 19.5 Million for Institutional Crypto Trading Platform (CCN), Rated: AAA

Cayman Island-based fintech startup Caspian has completed an eight-figure ICO ahead of schedule.

Founded earlier this year, Caspian ties together the biggest cryptocurrency exchanges in a single user interface. The full-stack crypto asset management platform also offers compliance, algorithms, portfolio management, risk, and reporting. Its co-founders David Wills and Robert Dykes plan to channel 40 percent of the raised $19.5 million towards research and development.

US-based crypto exchanges Coinbase and Gemini have also entered a strategic partnership with Caspian, which will enable them to offer its sophisticated trading and portfolio management functionalities to their customers. Hong Kong-based p2p crypto exchange BitMEX has also integrated Caspian for the same services.

Authors:

George Popescu
George Popescu
Allen Taylor
Allen Taylor

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Allen Taylor

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