SEC Charges Rapper T.I. & Four Others for Promoting Fraudulent ICO, FLiK

The US Securities and Exchange Commission has charged Atlanta-based rapper Clifford Harris, Jr., better known as T.I., and four others for promoting an unregistered and fraudulent initial coin offerings (ICO).

T.I. promoted FLiK tokens in 2017 to his social media followers, falsely stating that he was a co-owner of the project boasted as “Netflix on the blockchain.” The platform was advertised as a streaming media platform with products that can be purchased with digital tokens, the SEC said in a statement on Friday.

The 39-year old rapper has agreed to pay the penalty of $75,000.

As per SEC’s order, he is not allowed to participate in offerings or sales of digital-asset securities for at least five years.

The company’s founder, a film producer, named Ryan Felton, who started FLiK and CoinSpark, is meanwhile facing claims that he misappropriated the raised funds to buy Ferrari, a million-dollar home, and other luxury goods.

“Felton victimized investors through material misrepresentations, misappropriation of their funds, and manipulative trading,” said Carolyn M. Welshhans, Associate Director in the Division of Enforcement.

The complaint alleges that Felton secretly transferred FLiK tokens to himself and gained an additional $2.2 million in profits by selling them into the market.

Previously, boxer Floyd Mayweather and music producer DJ Khaled have also been sued by the regulators for hyping the ICOs.

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Author: AnTy

BitPay Launches Prepaid MasterCard; Convert Crypto to Dollars to Spend at Million of Merchants

Atlanta-based blockchain firm, BitPay, announces its new prepaid debit card available to U.S. customers with an aim to improve contactless payments and provide a fast and cheap gateway to spend cryptocurrency at any MasterCard accepted stores in the world.

BitPay Launches MasterCard Prepaid Debit Card

BitPay, a payments processor founded back in 2011, aims to provide a gateway for crypto users to use their coins in their day to day activities. The launch of the MasterCard enabled debit card will allow users to load the card with dollars straight from their crypto wallet. They can then use the card at any MasterCard accepted merchants and the 1,100+ stores partnering with BitPay.

The card allows instant reloads from the crypto wallet with no conversion fees from crypto to fiat. However, the company sets a daily reload limit of $10,000 and the transaction fees are not mentioned on BitPay’s website.

Users can also withdraw money through an ATM at a $2.50 fee and pay 3% to exchange the dollars and crypto to foreign currency. BitPay also offers users a virtual debit card for online shopping and quick access.

BitPay only offers services to U.S. customers but aims at expanding globally starting with Europe, the statement reads.

A safe non-custodial wallet

The new debit card will offer similar services and security to regular bank cards including an EMV chip and contactless payments in light of the current global pandemic. The exchange is non-custodial meaning users get to control their assets fully allowing users to convert and use crypto anywhere and anytime they want.

This is a bit different from debit cards that convert crypto from your exchange balance at the point of sale and slapping heavy fees on the transaction.

The growth of BitPay has been swift since its $500,000 seed funding round in 2013 becoming the first payment processor to list XRP in the U.S. The fourth-largest coin joined a slew of accepted cryptocurrencies on the platform including Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Litecoin (LTC) and a number of stablecoins including GUSD, PAX, USDC, and recently Binance’s BUSD.

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Author: Lujan Odera