This is our weekly digest of the latest blockchain news with comments from Taras Filatov, CEO of Dappros.
- The central bank of Brazil has suspended WhatsApp’s payments service just a week after its launch.
- Wang Zhongmin, the former vice-chair of the People’s Bank of China’s National Council for Social Security Fund, announced that China has completed the backend architecture development of China’s central bank digital currency.
- 17 Chinese firms across sectors founded the Distributed Identity Alliance to drive innovation through blockchain. Baidu, Tencent Cloud, WeBank, JD com, and UnionPay are among the big names that are part of the collaboration.
- EBON, Chinese mining machine maker, performed poorly on the first day of listing on Nasdaq, falling nearly 30% during the day.
- China wants to eventually track all transactions over $14,000 with the digital yuan.
- Binance is finalizing a deal to buy a majority stake in Swipe, setting stage for payments card launch.
- Wirecard, the troubled German payments processor, has just filed for insolvency at a Munich court. Wirecard said it has taken the decision due to “over-indebtedness.”
- Shareholders in German fintech Wirecard are taking legal action against Big Four auditor EY in the fallout from the scandal now engulfing the company. TF: this has impacted many IT companies who were relying on financial providers such as Payoneer who in turn used Wirecard services or infrastructure. Luckily Financial Conduct Authority in UK an other countries, Payoneer etc everybody worked together to minimize the impact on end users and avoid or minimise freezing the funds of their customers.
- The European Union is preparing a new cryptocurrency regime that could include stricter requirements for “global stablecoin” projects, such as Libra.
- Crypto.com and TenX’s crypto debit cards are usable again as U.K. regulators allow Wirecard to resume “regulated activity.”
- Indian banks act slow to accept crypto industry. Banks are reluctant to work with crypto firms, even though RBI clears the air.
- The Italian Banking Association voiced its to develop a European Central Bank-backed digital currency for Italy.
- Huobi Japan to list regulator approved Huobi Token. Huobi Token is the first foreign exchange token approved by the Japan’s financial regulator.
- Sitsu, a Japanese blockchain company, announced it would start testing a new local digital currency for retailers at the University of Aizu.
- Monaco picks official provider for security token Blockchain-based tokenization platform Tokeny will operate its security token offerings, starting with a film production project. TF: great news, I have personally met Tokeny, they have a great founding team and this again demonstrates they are slowly but steadily winning ground in security tokenization in the European region. You can read more from Dappros on security tokens including our comparison of security tokens platforms (featuring Tokeny among others) and our report + infographics on the state of security tokens development which has been featured in a number of publications.
- New Zealand police have seized NZ$140 million in bank funds linked to Alexander Vinnik, a Russian alleged to have been the controller of the now-defunct BTC-e cryptocurrency exchange.
- Russia’s communications watchdog, Roskomnadzor, issued a public statement on June 18, announcing that it has lifted its ban on the popular messaging app Telegram. TF: they’ve had to give up as it turned out impossible to fully ban Telegram due to its sophisticated content delivery infrastructure! As Facebook’s Libra and Telegram’s TON both had their hands slapped in US, it will be interesting to see if we are going to witness these able players re-entering through the ‘backdoor’ of other markets such as Lat Am, India and Russia.
- Beam’s Hard Fork plans to increase DeFi privacy. The system-wide upgrade dubbed Beam Eager Electron 5.0 is expected to occur today, at exactly block 777,777.
- A Russian national behind the cybercriminal enterprise Infraud Organization has pleaded guilty to racketeering conspiracy, due to his role as a co-founder and admin of the dark web-based carding portal which generated profits over $568 million.
- The Singaporean government revealed that there was a surge in ransomware attacks that occurred in 2019 in the country.
- Building Cities Beyond Blockchain, a Singapore based tech solution company for smart cities, has launched an innovation grant, worth $15 million, to encourage development on its ecosystem.
- Sparrow, an options trading platform, has secured USD 3.5 million in Series A funding to accelerate platform development.
- South Korean Government turns to Blockchain tech to more securely store clinical diabetes data.
- The Bank for International Settlements released a special chapter from that annual report on digital payments, concerning central bank digital currencies. It reveals an uptick in positive statements regarding CBDCs.
- Zug’s SEBA bank, a crypto-focused and Swiss license financial institution, announced a new Bitcoin-centric structured product yesterday. The instrument allows holders to passively bet on BTC prices in the short-term.
- Bitfinex, veteran cryptocurrency exchange, launches the Dazaar platform, an open-source peer-to-peer data streaming platform that will allow users to share media across a decentralized network.
- The University of California at San Francisco has paid a million-dollar ransom following unsuccessful negotiations with a ransomware hacker group.
- Gpay, crypto trading platform, shut down by Courts. The firm falsely claiming support from high-profile entrepreneurs has been wound-up after losing £1.5 million of clients’ funds.
- Opyn, a hedging instrument for decentralized finance, has closed a $2.16 million funding round, led by Dragonfly Capital, with participation from 1kx, DTC Capital, Uncorrelated Ventures and A.Capital.
- KPMG Chain Fusion is set to help traditional financial companies and fintech startups provide well-managed crypto asset
- PayPal And Venmo may support crypto trade by September 2020.
- DeFi Money Market, a project backed by Tim Draper, has raised $6.5 million in a token sale. It’s an Ethereum-based yield farm that claims to offer consistent interest rates. TF: interesting. Yield farming is very popular currently within DeFi community.
- Telegram, a major privacy-focused messaging app, has suffered a data leak that exposed some personal data of its users on the darknet. TF: they did play it down saying 60% data is outdated, but definitely not good.
- WhatsApp, Signal privacy at risk from new anti-encryption The Lawful Access to Encrypted Data Act would force WhatsApp, Signal and Telegram to allow access to user messaging.
- Grayscale Investments has added 19,879 BTC to its Bitcoin Trust in the last week, purchasing Bitcoin faster than the tokens can be mined. At This Rate Grayscale will own 3.4% of all Bitcoin by January 2021.
- CoinList to distribute Filecoin tokens after the network’s mainnet launch in August.
- Counter-Strike superstars with two million fans will participate in a crypto-powered tournament, while fans will be able to bet on the outcome with crypto tokens.
- LibertyX, the firm that launched one of the early Bitcoin ATMs, has just made purchasing Bitcoin in cash possible at more than 20,000 retail locations including 7-Eleven, CVS, and Rite Aid across the United States.
- Circle’s USDC is coming to Algorand. Circle USD has a market cap approaching $1 billion, making it the second-largest stablecoin on the market.
- Venezuela trials Bitcoin for passport Venezuela’s passport agency briefly accepted Bitcoin on its website today.
Zimbabwe has suspended mobile money payments and the national stock exchange. The government claims the move is to avert a national currency crisis.
VYSYN Capital’s Telegram channel and other open sources have been used in preparing this material.
Stay tuned in for the next release!