Polkadot Powered DEX, Zenlink, Partners With Chainlink to Leverage It’s Oracle For DeFi Products

Zenlink, a popular decentralized exchange powered by Polkadot, has joined hands with blockchain oracle firm Chainlink. Chainlink is known for its live data feeds and oracles used for smart contracts. Zenlink would also leverage Chainlink’s oracles for its numerous DeFi products.

Oracles play a crucial role in smart contract programming and execution, making it a core product/service in the DeFi ecosystem. Live market data helps in seamless execution and secure transactions.

Zenlink aims to make the most of this partnership and expand the quality and quantity of services it offers. Currently, the DEX platform allows traders to swap their assets on parachains seamlessly. These oracles would make their financial products more robust and reliable. Zenlink hopes for reliability and security due to the oracle would also attract new traders to the platform.

Guo Tao, Zenlink Co-founder, commented on their recent partnership with chainlink and its importance.

“Zenlink will play a critical role in allowing users and developers to swap assets across parachains securely.

Chainlink’s high-quality data and reliable oracle infrastructure will enable feeders to trust the data feed used to trigger DeFi products built on Zenlink.

This enhances our ability to scale and secure even more value across a wider variety of assets.”

Chainlink One of the Key Oracle Partner in the DEX Ecosystem

Zenlink’s association with Chainlink came as no surprise as more DEX platforms are looking to integrate and leverage live data feeds and oracles into their systems. Chainlink, being a reliable name with a tested record, has become a key player in the DEX market.

Apart from Zenlink, another Polkadot powered platform known as Equilibrium has also brought Chainlink on board to provide decentralized live feeds. Equilibrium also plans to utilize the decentralized oracles to enhance its financial products and services.

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Author: Hank Klinger

Ethereum Developer ConsenSys Partners with Thailand’s Central Bank & French Bank for Retail CBDC

ConsenSys has joined the Bank of Thailand as its technology partner to develop and test a prototype for central bank digital currency (CBDC). Other partners include SCG and Digital Ventures (DV).

As per the announcement, the CBDC will be tested and issued using ERC20 smart contracts. In partnership with Atato, it will “architect a solution using its Enterprise Ethereum stack, including ​Codefi​ and ​MetaMask​.” Charles d’Haussy, Director of ConsenSys in Hong Kong, said,

“A retail blockchain-based CBDC represents a new technology for the issuance of central bank money, where tokenized central bank money is accessible to the general public, and in this case businesses piloting the solution.”

The company that develops for the second-largest network Ethereum and funds the ecosystem startups is also helping French bank Societe Generale in its Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) pilot research.

According to the announcement, ConsenSys will work with the bank’s digital arm, SocGen – Forge, and will provide its expertise regarding issuance and management, delivery versus payment, and cross-ledger interoperability of the CBDC. Jean-Marc Stenger, CEO, SocGen said,

“We are pleased to partner with ConsenSys, a company who is a key player in the development of distributed ledger technology globally and offers many of the infrastructure and development tools used by the blockchain community.”

SocGen – Forge is also working with Banque de France on CBDC experiments and recently issued a EUR40 million bond that was settled with a digital euro.

These aren’t the first instances of ConsenSys being involved in CBDC experiments; it has been reportedly helping the Hong Kong Monetary Authority on a CBDC pilot to facilitate cross-border payments between commercial banks as well. Ken Timsit, Global Head of Enterprise Solutions at ConsenSys, said,

“ConsenSys is committed to advances in the CBDC space and has assisted six central banks around the world on CBDC projects.”

In August, it also acquired Quorum, JPMorgan’s blockchain platform on which the bank’s stablecoin JPM Coin is built, which is expected to see its first commercial use this week.

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Author: AnTy

VeChain Joins China Animal Health and Food Safety Alliance (CAFA)

VeChain has joined the China Animal Health and Food Safety Alliance (CAFA) as one of its council members and will be providing them technical and infrastructural support.

The enterprise friendly public blockchain platform, VeChain will help in “building a from-farm-to-table traceability system across the entire country.”

Established in 2009, CAFA, a government-backed organization that comes under the Chinese National Agricultural Science Technology Innovation Alliance, already has over 130 members that aim to build a platform that connects the government, producers, research institutes, and food industry associations.

Members of CAFA

Launched in 2015, VeChain has been working with several enterprises including Walmart China, BMW, BYD Auto, Haier, H&M, LVMH, D.I.G, ENN, AWS, PICC, and ASI, providing a governance structure and IoT integration.

Here, through VeChain ToolChain, all the members of the alliance will be able to log key processes of food products on blockchain in an immutable and secure manner.

VeChain launched ToolChain in 2019, a “scalable and easy-to-implement technology” that allows business owners to integrate the public blockchain VeChainThor into existing business processes.

VeChain ToolChain has also collaborated with Walmart China Food Traceability Platform and Foodgates through its built-in and ready-to-use customizable tools to enable foot enterprises to quickly achieve the “full lifecycle traceability for their supply chains” at a controllable cost.

In line with CAFA’s vision to provide “consumers with safe, high-quality and healthy food of animal origin,” traceability can start from cultivation covering processing, packaging, logistics, retail, and more. The official announcement states,

“Positioned as the enabler for the real economy, VeChain continues to promote exponential mass adoption of blockchain technology and drive tangible value for businesses.”

In response to this partnership, the 25th largest crypto by market cap of $890 million, VET jumped over 16% in value to $0.014. According to one trader, if the digital asset makes a HL, VET can see another 25% uptrend.

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Author: AnTy

Binance UK Joins the CryptoUK Self-Regulatory Association Ahead of Its Expected Launch

Binance U.K has joined CryptoUK, a self-regulatory trade association, as it prepares to launch its trading services in the United Kingdom. The exchange’s U.K subsidiary broke this news on Twitter, noting that they are joining the association as an executive member.

This milestone will see Binance U.K operate alongside the likes of Coinbase, Ripple, CryptoCompare, eToro, and CoinShares, who are also part of the CryptoUK executive committee.

Started back in 2018, the CryptoUK initiative came about as an avenue to accelerate crypto growth in the U.K through self-regulation. Some of the issues that the association advocates for include the development of best practices in crypto as well as sustainable growth. On this front, CryptoUK operates in liaison with stakeholders, not limited to financial regulators.

Currently, they are focused on giving feedback to Her Majesty’s Treasury, which recently inquired the public about crypto asset promotions. In addition, the association is set to play a contributing role in the U.K Cryptoasset Task Force stablecoin consultation, which is slated for late 2020. Ian Taylor, the chairman of CryptoUK, has since welcomed Binance U.K to advance the association’s course,

“Binance.UK will bring significant local and global expertise to our Executive Committee and initiatives. We look forward to working with them to help develop a supportive regulatory framework for cryptoasset businesses and customers in the U.K.”

This latest move by Binance U.K solidifies an entry position into the British market following the acquisition of EddieUK, which now operates as Binance Markets Limited. Notably, the firm was already regulated by U.K’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) hence a smooth transition that would have been otherwise cumbersome, given regulatory hurdles. Binance U.K head, Teana Baker-Taylor, acknowledged the additional value in joining a self-regulatory body,

“Self-regulating bodies play a key role in developing […] best practices, as well as building consumer confidence. Associations like CryptoUK help to facilitate meaningful discussion and education with policy makers, which enables the development of more informed policies that are more effective in supporting both the industry and consumers.”

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Author: Edwin Munyui

Elon Musk Selling DOGE Gives Dogecoin Another Pump

Tesla CEO Elon Musk has joined the party but late this time.

Last time, the zoomers weren’t able to realize their mission of taking DOGE off to $1 but it looks like Musk is here to make it a reality this time, or not.

The co-founder and CEO of SpaceX is back at tweeting about his favorite coin Dogecoin. Today, in a tweet, he memes about the “inevitability” of the Dogecoin standard overtaking the global financial system.

In a few hours, the price of DOGE jumped more than 24%. Currently, it is trading around $0.00345, still up over 14%.

In a separate tweet, Musk said “I only sell Doge!” which was in response to one user asking “where’s my fucking bitcoin.”

Earlier this week, the major twitter accounts including Musk’s were hacked to promote a bitcoin-related giveaway scam. According to the New York Times, it is reportedly an insider job.

Currently, the focus is on taking the bitcoin addresses to get to the hackers, the scam addresses have a history of “gambling on Bitmex and Coinbase usage.”

The hackers were only able to scam 12 BTC worth $120,000 out of people, the funds are currently on the move through mixing and merchant services.

Pump only to Dump

This isn’t the first time Musk has tweeted about DOGE and that has resulted in the altcoin’s price jumping. Back in April 2019, DOGE spiked 44% only to retrace to the price level where Musk mentioned the crypto.

“Bro where were you last week? We could have pumped this thing to not $1 but $2,” commented trader Josh Rager.

Earlier this month, the retail activity in equity markets spilled into the digital currency markets as a viral challenge on the popular social app Tik Tok saw users talking about pumping Dogecoin to $1.

The price of DOGE went to only about $0.0050 but its market cap jumped 150% to $700 million and its trading activity went off the charts.

The meme coin had since then pulled back to the level the pump started before Musk jumped in to pump the coin once more but these gains are also slowly wiping out.

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Author: AnTy

BTCPay Integrates PayJoin To Offer Added Privacy for Bitcoin Transactions

BTCPay, an open-source Bitcoin payment platform has joined hands with PayJoin to offer an added layer of privacy to the Bitcoin transactions on its platform.

Payjoin is among the latest privacy tools available in the market and is believed to offer better privacy protection than the popular alternative Coinjoin. BTCPay is quite popular among merchants who accept numerous Bitcoin and Lightning payments through this open-source tool.

BTCPay’s integration of PayJoin might give the privacy tool much-needed recognization from a larger population and also lead to awareness around the use of privacy technology as cryptocurrencies were intended to be. The initial version with an integrated PayJoin tool was launched on Thursday.

Andrew Camilleri, one of the lead developers on BTCPay’s platform said:

“Our mission is financial sovereignty for everyone and PayJoin is a great tool to help break blockchain analysis heuristics and achieve that. Since BTCPay is so widely used, it should help jumpstart usage.”

The PayJoin integration and development work is being funded Blockstream and Blockstream’s Chief Strategy Officer Samson Mow is a firm believer in privacy who commented on the integration of PayJoin saying:

“We’re hoping to improve the privacy and fungibility of bitcoin by accelerating the adoption of P2EP. If enough wallets and businesses support P2EP, it could provide the critical mass needed to achieve widespread financial privacy.”

How Private Are These Privacy Tools?

A majority of these privacy tools just mix a range of Bitcoin transactions together from the point it was initiated to the final wallet, where they are destined for, in order to make it hard to detect the initial transaction point.

Tools like CoinJoin are being actively used by privacy wallets such as Wasabi. However, if a user sends any transaction from their wallet to a wasabi wallet it can be easily seen on the Blockchain, which defeats the purpose of mixing several transactions together.

On the other hand, PayJoin promises to overcome this issue as the transaction into the PayJoin doesn’t pool multiple transactions, but only the transactions of the sender and receiver which results in the final transaction looking like any other transaction on the Bitcoin blockchain.

Due to the use of privacy tools such as CoinJoin and Wasabi, many blockchain analytical firms have managed to find patterns in these mixing tools which help them in finding out the real owner of those transactions.

Camilleri said that PayJoin would be the perfect privacy tool every privacy centered individual has been looking for as it will not only keep one’s transaction private but would also ensure that the growing crop of market monitoring tools won’t be able to detect it.

However, there is just one drawback as it requires both the sender and the receiver to be online.

PayJoin was created back in 2018, but with very limited use and integration into wallets. One of the main reasons being highlighted is that both the sender and receiver wallet must support the tool.

Project Snowball is trying to resolve this issue by creating codes; making it easier to integrate PayJoin to any Bitcoin wallet. The involvement of Blockstream is also helping boost this procedure. Mow noted:

“The next interesting step would be for an exchange to support P2EP.

Ultimately we need to make a choice on what kind of world we want to live in, one where there is financial privacy or one where there isn’t.

Without privacy and fungibility, money can be used as a tool for oppression or financial surveillance. Bitcoin is the future of money and the future of money shouldn’t be Orwellian.”

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Author: James W

Bitstamp Integrates Fireblocks to Scale and Secure Institutional Grade Transactions

Bitstamp has joined the likes of Galaxy Digital, Celsius Network, and Genesis by integrating the services of crypto security firm Fireblocks to offer better security and faster transactions to its institutional clients.

Fireblocks which is a Fidelity backed security firm has been known to cater its services to large institutional clients. The recent integration on Bitstamp would allow the institutional customers to clear their transactions with a single confirmation.

The one-confirmation transaction would be initially rolled out for selected clients and in the time being Bitstamp is also working to scale the services to cater to more clients by enhancing their settlements capabilities.

How Do Fireblocks’ Services Ease Institutional Clients Work?

The integration of Fireblocks’ ‘Secure Transfer Environment’ allows institutional clients of one platform to connect their account on another platform which enables Fireblocks to enhance the transaction capabilities on the native platform.

The security service provider’s technology act as a bridge between exchange platforms, custodians, wallets and even counterparties. The security platform also ensures that all enterprise-grade security measures are met before initiating any kind of transaction.

The Institutional Client security provider makes use of chip isolation technology (SGX) which facilitates the secure transaction between two platforms while ensuring the security of Private keys as well as API keys.

Fireblocks has become a favorite of institutional service providers as it supports 180 crypto tokens and its security features have been integrated into more than 20 exchanges. These exchanges are moving over $2.5 billion worth of crypto tokens every month.

While large institutional service providers are the primary partners of the firm, the security service provider is also expanding its partnership spectrum by offering its services to lending platforms, like Compound to allow customers to earn passive income with interest rates between 3%-7%.

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Author: Hank Klinger

Fidelity Digital Assets Onboards First Crypto Exchange, ErisX to Increase Trading Liquidity

ErisX clearinghouse now has a new member, Fidelity Digital Asset, (FDA) has joined ExisX in order to offer better buy and sell liquidity by taking advantage of its own central limit order book.

The announcement of Fidelity’s new venture was made on Thursday, and stated that the ErisX spot market will be available for all FDA customers. ErisX is the first crypto exchange to be onboarded by FDA. Terrence Dempsey, head of product at FDA believes, that ErisX was so attractive to his company because they are regulatory compliant and have the right counterparty risk analysis tools. He said,

“We have an execution platform that is connected to our custody offering that offers two things,” he said. “One [is] a matching engine, so we’ll look to cross client trades and if we can’t … we go out to a network of venues, or liquidity providers as we call them, that we can actually go and execute with.”

ErisX Validates FDA’s Work

The CEO of ErisX, Thomas Chippas, said of the new partnership:

“[…] a great validation of what we’ve been working on for so long, which is to get these sorts of household institutional intermediary names into our market.”

Crypto enthusiasts already know that one of ErisX’s goals is to make more traditional intermediaries come into the crypto world, and FDA has invested efforts in doing all this by offering execution and custody services for quite a while now. Thursday’s announcement indicates the already long lasting relationship between the 2 companies will further be solidified. Fidelity Digital Asset was one of the initial investors in ErisX back in 2018.

What Benefits Will the Deal Bring?

The central limit order book is a great benefit as it’s made available to all clearinghouse participants so they can access the same pool of liquidity. While OTC desks are tapping a price when having to connect buyers and sellers in order to increase their own profits, the ErisX system doesn’t do this. Dempsey said FDA worked in the past with OTC desks, but decided that identifying the liquidity pool to which the crypto custodian of the asset manager has access is what’s truly helpful. In other words, ErisX provides access to its spot exchange and order book, with the user experience and interface are being handled by FDA.

ErisX to Continue Adding Clearinghouse Members

As Chippas said, ErisX is planning to add more clearinghouse members. He didn’t specify how many members there are at the moment but mentioned they’re both institutional and retail clients. Names like TradeStation and TD Ameritrade were noted. He added that the new partnership with the FDA won’t raise any concerns for the long-term relationship ErisX has with TD Ameritrade. He added,

“The fact that Fidelity’s customer trades will now occur on a regulated and surveilled order book should build confidence for other entities.”

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Author: Oana Ularu

Shopify Joins Facebook-led Libra Association To Help Build Stablecoin Payment Network

E-commerce platform Shopify has announced that it has joined the Libra Association. This means that the online shopping firm is the latest entrant of the Facebook-led stablecoin project. The entry of Shopify into the association comes barely a month following Vodafone’s pull out with the aim of developing its solo virtual payments platform. This marks the first time the organization is admitting a new member since it was created.

In a blog post, Shopify stated that it aims at working with other members to develop a payment system which can work everywhere in the world.

Libra was released by Facebook last year to work as a worldwide payment system with the Libra stablecoin pegged on various global currencies. A governing council to guide the execution and implementation of the project was formed in October and named the Libra Association in order to decentralize the stablecoin’s leadership albeit on paper. However, Facebook is not a member of the council but Calibra, its subsidiary, is a member.

The Libra Association brings together various firms such as Coinbase, Andreessen Horowitz, Anchorage, Xapo, Bison Trails, Union Square Ventures, Uber, Spotify, PayU, among others.

Other firms like PayPal, Mastercard, eBay, Visa, Booking Holdings, Mercado Pago and Stripe were initially to be members of the organization but withdrew from the project before its official launch, CoinDesk reports. Vodafone has been a member of the council but withdrew last month.

Shopify stated that it is joining the association in order to be active in the development of an infrastructure which empowers the majority of entrepreneurs across the globe. The press release also stated that most of the existing financial infrastructure in the world is not developed to scale in the right manner to meet the needs of online commerce.

Dante Disparte, the policy head in Libra Association expressed the organization gratitude in welcoming its 21st member. He added that Shopify will bring immense expertise and knowledge to the Libra project, since it is present in more than 175 countries with more than 1 million businesses. He added that Shopify will be crucial in the development of a financial system that will efficiently serve billions of people.

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Author: Joseph Kibe

Former Apple Card & Pay Lead Joins Santander To Head Global Digital Payments

An Apple payments products executive, Trish Burgess, has joined the Spain-based bank Santander’s peer-to-peer (P2P) global payments team.

As an announcement from Thursday says, Santander is looking to expand it digital payments services in order to make them global. Burgess’ LinkedIn profile indicates she worked at Apple for 4 and a half years, where she helped to lead the launches of Apple Pay and Apple Card.

Burgess Has Worked for Santander Before

Burgess isn’t a stranger to Santander, as she previously held the position of being responsible with the securities offered by the bank. Burgess was employed between 2007 and 2010. After 2010, she was a senior executive for BNP Paribas and Visa. When it comes to education, she studied marketing and finance with electronics, focusing more on telecoms.

Back at Santander, she will report to the Santander Digital Payments’ global head Chirag Patel. The bank says its Digital Payments team is in charge with improving the users’ experience and the adoption of an international payment network as far as P2P payments goes.

Santander is Committed to Deliver the Best Payments Solutions

Patel said Santander wants to provide customers the best payments solutions. This is what he mentioned about Burgess’s role at the bank:

“Trish’s appointment as head of P2P highlights our commitment to delivering best-in-class payments solutions for our customers. We know that innovation is powered by the most talented people, and we welcome Trish’s wealth of payment experience.”

Last year, Santander dedicated about 20 billion Euros for investments in digital payments technology. Back in 2018, it introduced a blockchain-based mobile app that uses Ripple’s xCurrent technology. The app is called One Pay FX and was first rolled out for the bank’s customers from Spain, the UK and the US. Later, One Pay FX was made available for customers residing in Latin America.

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Author: Oana Ularu