Bitcoin Revolution Trader At It Again, Targets Professional Cycling Legend Peter Sagan

Peter Sagan, a renowned cycling legend, has been the latest victim of the Bitcoin Revolution scam which uses the identity of worldwide stars to dupe naive crypto investors. The scammers also use fake news articles as well as adverts.

Sagan used his Twitter account to state that he is not party to an article that was published by the scammers saying that he was an associate of Bitcoin Revolution. The article claims that Sagan had an interview on a certain Slovakian TV program and explained how Bitcoin Revolution platform is capable of making one a millionaire in a short span of 3 to 4 months.

The scammers claim that Sagan explained to the audience how they could become instant millionaires using Bitcoin Revolution. However, several minutes after the completion of the interview, Slovak National Bank officials called the TV station for the interview not to be broadcasted, but it had already been aired. The scammers stated that Sagan asked Slovakia citizens to get involved and seize the rare opportunity before it gets scrapped by the banks.

To give the article credibility, the fraudsters had posted photos of Richard Branson and Bill Gates saying that they had discussed the Bitcoin Revolution during CES 219. In addition, the site also has testimonials of different people praising Bitcoin Revolution for the opportunity given to become millionaires.

This is not the first time that Bitcoin Revolution is giving the crypto industry a negative publicity by painting it as an industry full of cons. Previously, the cons have used such big names like Richard Branson, Jeremy Clarkson as well as Alex Ferguson.

According to U.Today, Such types of scams have been on the rise and cryptocurrency anti-crusaders such as Nouriel Roubini as well as Steve Hanke, both Nobel-winning economists, have cited such scams to drive their points home against cryptocurrencies.

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Author: Joseph Kibe

South Korea’s Central Bank Set To Use Blockchain Technology For Bond Transactions

Bank of South Korea, the country’s central bank, has become the latest central bank to explore blockchain technology to enhance efficiency as well as transparency in interbanking processes.

South Korea’s central bank is now seeking to emulate the World Bank which successfully introduced the use of blockchain technology in bond transactions. According to Cointelegraph the Bank of Korea is developing blockchain-based bonds.

A report which first appeared on a local news outlet Yonhap Informax, reveals that the South Korea’s central bank has been looking for a blockchain services offeror who will help in development of a blockchain-based bond system which will enable the swift distribution of all the bond details to all the participants.

Late last year, the Bank of Korea rolled on a project about Proof of Concept (PoC) with an aim of transferring bond transaction information to a blockchain-based records system that can be accessed by numerous nodes. At the moment these records are stored by the Korea Securities Depository.

The project will bring together various state agencies such as the country’s regulatory authority, the Bank of Korea, Korea Fair Trade Commission as well as financial institutions. The project will have different nodes that will be operated by these institutions.

According to an official privy to the project’s details, various Korea’s financial authorities have actively been piloting the benefits of blockchain technology when it comes to issuance of state bonds. He explained:

“We are using government bonds to record securities and cash transactions in a distributed ledger and test whether a real-time simultaneous payment trading system is possible.”

As per the report by Cointelegraph, the current blockchain research by Bank of Korea in relation to the bond market transactions is being guided by blockchain-based bond transaction between Australian Commonwealth and the World Bank which took place in 2018.

Late last year, the Bank of Korea revealed that it was in the process of coming up with a competent group that will research and give recommendations on the launching and use of a central bank digital currency (CBDC), an exercise that will be conducted this year.

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Author: Joseph Kibe

5 Chinese-Based Entities Control 49.9% of Bitcoin (BTC) Hash Rate: TokenAnalyst Report

According to the latest report of TokenAnalyst, Bitcoin is more centralized than ever before.

Bitcoin a decentralized and nearly trustless system to transfer and safely store value. But in 2020, it has started to

“become a highly centralized system that places an increasing amount of trust in a small number of large entities.”

The report states that just like a few large cryptocurrency exchanges dominate the crypto landscape, the mining sector is now also dominated by a small number of entities with a power base in China.

The metric the firm uses is calculated by identifying the addresses controlled by mining entities and then identifying the block they mined.

As awareness and adoption increase, so does the competition which has many smaller participants become unprofitable and exiting the market. The individual and small miners have been replaced by large operations that created groups by forming partnerships.

One entity to rule ‘em all

Today, five mining entities viz. BTC.com, AntPool, F2Pool, BTC.top, and ViaBTC — all of which are based in China and available via BirDeer — controls 49.9% of all computing power on the network. BitDeer lets consumers rent mining power without buying or setting up mining hardware.

“On 27th January 2020 these 5 mining entities controlled 49.9% of the hashrate of the bitcoin network,” states the report.

5-miners-control

5-miners-control

It basically acts as the connective link between to pull their resources and share freshly mined bitcoin as rewards.

“Once a consumer has paid BitDeer for a plan, they can assign that hashrate to any partnership mining pool,” TokenAnalyst said in the report. “Does it really make a difference anymore? What is to stop the entities merging into a single large entity that maintains a degree of separation” only through address structure.

Eroding the trustless model of the network

Over the decade, mining has changed dramatically, earlier GPU rigs were used that shifted to FPGA and ASIC miners. Eventually, miners formed mining pools as mining a block became difficult.

And now today’s large-scale cloud mining operations have lowered the barriers to entry that allows an individual to purchase hash rate plans without the need to expand on capital, complicated set-up, or maintenance.

Although a good thing, the centralization of bitcoin network hash power is a concerning point as “it erodes the trustless model of the network.”

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Author: AnTy

Hong Kong, Thai Central Banks Plan To Issue Joint Digital Currency For Cross Border Payments

  • Hong Kong and Thailand central banks the latest global regulators to announce plans on launching a central bank digital currency (CBDC).
  • The joint digital currency project will allow banks across the two countries to exchange funds.
  • Top central banks are gaining pace in plans of a CBDC.

According to an official joint press release from the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) and the Bank of Thailand (BOT), the two institutions are working on a blockchain that enables efficient transactions between banks in the two countries. The announcement follows up on a 90-page report of the “Project Inthanon-LionRock”, a research on the findings on the possible launch of a joint CBDC between the two institutions.

The launch the Thai-Hong Kong cross-border payment will allow participating banks to transfer funds and settle transactions on a peer-to peer basis. This reduces the overall transaction time and fees building an efficient system to settle in real-time in an “atomic payment-versus-payment manner.” Deputy Governor of the BOT, said,

“Building on pain points and business cases, the novel cross-border model is designed and developed as a Proof of Concept (PoC). The design and key findings of the project have added new dimensions to central bank communities’ studies on cross-border funds transfer area.”

THB-HKD cross-border corridor network prototype was completed in December 2019, and the current launch will be distributed to banks. Mr. Edmond Lau, Senior Executive Director of the HKMA on the launch of the CBDC report said,

“Our joint research project with the Bank of Thailand marks an important first step to solve the pain points of low efficiency and high costs in traditional cross-border payments.”

Hong Kong and Thailand become the latest regulators to focus on CBDCs following China’s PBoC’s announcement of a launch of a sovereign digital currency. Moreover, a consortium of top central banks in the world including the Bank of Japan (BOJ), Bank of England (BOE), Royal Bank of Canada and BIS among others came together to set up a commission earlier this week. The commission will assess the possible use and development of a central bank digital currency (CBDC) within their respective jurisdictions.

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Author: Lujan Odera

South Korean Exchange Bithumb To Fight NTS In Court Over $69M Tax Bill

  • South Korean based exchange, Bithumb, set to go to court to challenge NFT’s latest $69 million USD tax imposition.
  • The court has 90 days to give a ruling on the matter.
  • Is a clear tax regulation framework being put in place in South Korea?

According to local reports from The Korean Times, the largest crypto exchange in the country is challenging the latest tax imposed by the National Tax Service (NTS) in a Tax Tribunal in what it terms as a groundless base. The government taxing agency imposed over 80 billion Korean won ($69 million USD) in November last year claiming the exchange should pay up “withholding tax”.

According to one Bithumb official, the amount was already paid but said the exchange will move to court to challenge the NTS directive to pay the retainer tax. The NTS remains adamant on the fact that any profits paid out to investors in Korean won, should be considered as income.

This has however been refuted by a couple of cryptocurrency and blockchain experts and lawyers in the financial field such as Choi Hwoa-in, an adviser to Financial Supervisory Service. Bitcoin is not recognized as an asset in the country hence taxing it is against the law. Choi said,

“The Ministry of Economy and Finance already made that clear. The NTS pushing ahead with the tax imposition is baseless and groundless, especially since it is still awaiting the ministry opinion on the same matter it sought again.”

The Tax Tribunal will now have a 90 days period to work on the case and give a ruling on whether Bithumb will be refunded the amount paid or let the tax levied to Bithumb to stand. Choi said this was a calculated move by the exchange, who may see part of the tax paid, or the whole amount.

Regulation in South Korea may be getting better with the latest case set to set precedence. The tax regulation case will be a key tipping point in cryptocurrency regulation in South Korea, a country known for progressive technological innovations. NTS also taxed Bithumb $28 million USD last year on retainer’s levies.

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Author: Lujan Odera

Justin Sun’s New ‘Secret’ Project Aiming to Disrupt Netflix & YouTube

  • The latest project won’t have any new token, to be purely based on TRX & BTT
  • PewDiePie live-streams on DLive, mentions BitTorrent and TRON
  • Tron is the 2nd largest Dapp platform, beating EOS
  • But TRX price isn’t showing any excitement
  • Tron founder and CEO Justin Sun is at it again.

This time he is making the announcement of an upcoming secret project for BitTorrent and DLive that according to “conservative forecast” will bring in millions of users and have at least multi-billion benefits not only for BTT but also for TRX ecosystem.

One good thing about this project is that there would be “no new token” and will be using BTT and TRX. It will be “purely” based on Tron and BitTorrent, explained Sun.

In his latest tweet, he said this “secret” project is aiming to disrupt Twitch, Periscope, Netflix, and YouTube.

That’s quite a secret project coming on. The community, however, is divided into two, with one side happy about yet another development while the other side wants Sun to just stop with all his announcements of announcements.

PewDiePie mentions BitTorrent and TRON

Recently, a famous YouTuber PewDiePie, who has 102 million subscribers on YouTube, live-streamed his content on DLive, a blockchain-powered streaming site that is migrating to the TRON network. Just a few days back, in late December, DLive announced its partnership with Tron.

Sun took to Twitter to announce this development on Jan. 10 although PewDiePie has been streaming on the platform for some time now. In his latest video, PewDiePie actually mentioned BitTorrent and TRON, saying Tron has “over 100 million users.”

Tron is the 2nd Largest Dapp Platform

In other news, Tron is the 2nd largest Decentralized Applications (Dapps) platform, as per DappReview, a dapp analyzing platform.

“The number of Dapps has increased dramatically at TRON and has surpassed EOS as the second-largest developer platform,” wrote Sun.

The report states, during H1 2019, casino and high-risk DApps contributed the most to the transactions on the Tron network. But as prices dropped, so did the users’ enthusiasm for speculation, leading to a “continuous decline” in transaction volume.

But TRX Price isn’t Showing any Excitement

When it comes to price, the 11th largest cryptocurrency is currently trading at $0.015, down 0.96% in the past 24 hours, as per Coincodex. In the past seven days, its value has increased by about 8% but is still down 95% from its all-time high of $0.30.

Released on Jan. 31, 2019, BTT is up by 6.21% in the past 24 hours while trading at $ 0.000320 but down 83% from ATH of $ 0.001875.

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Author: AnTy

Bitcoin Has Evolved Into A Savings Technology And A Tool for Freedom: Fidelity Digital Assets

As the past decade ends, the latest mainstream big shot entrant in the crypto industry Fidelity Investments reflected on the maturation of the infrastructure of the Bitcoin market. The report states,

“In a few short years, Bitcoin’s story has critically evolved to recognize the true potential of the network — as a new type of value transfer system, a tool for freedom, a savings technology and possibly more that we have yet to discover.”

Despite there being unanswered questions, Fidelity Digital Assets says Bitcoin has “cemented” its position and its “potential cannot be ignored.”

Making Progress

Taking a deep dive into its progress, it can be found that trading and investment on regulated platforms are growing while value transferred over Bitcoin is “competitive with incumbent value transfer systems.”

The launch of regulated physically settled futures contracts has been the major development in 2019, noted the asset manager. This launch made the market less subject to manipulation by removing the need for an index of spot exchange prices to determine the price.

2019 also saw Square rolling its support for BTC buying and selling, with $339 million worth of BTC purchased by its customers via Cash App.

Square efforts are driven by CEO Jack Dorsey who believes bitcoin can become the currency that will power the Internet. Dorsey has also invested in Lightning Labs and CoinList while launching Square Crypto.

Bitcoin’s Core Properties Will Drive Its Adoption

When it comes to key performance indicators, Bitcoin’s realized value, the average fair value of mined BTC adjusted with short-term volatility, reached its all-time high. 2019 also saw the network’s hash rate climbing to ATH of 110 million TH/s driven by rising prices, improvements in the efficiency and computational power of mining gear, and more mining operations joining the network.

The adjusted transaction volume on the Bitcoin network in 2019 although less than the previous year recorded the same as PayPal. However, the average transaction size is comparable to the ACH transaction size.

The leader of the market has been seeing an increasing and “diverse and entrenched” community of users, especially in the past two years. All the while, maintaining its core properties of being borderless, decentralized value storage, antifragile, and censorship and seizure resistant. And these properties will be what will drive the adoption, says the report.

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Author: AnTy

Ripple or No Ripple? TransferWise Joins Visa’s Real-Time Payment Solution for Global Remittances

  • The latest company to join Visa’s real-time payments platform Visa Direct that simplifies and drives costs down in the global remittance space is TransferWise.

The major money transfer service has joined the expanding partners’ list of Visa Direct that processed 2 billion transactions in 2019. The idea behind Visa Direct is to make sending money as “as easy as sending a text message.” Kristo Käärmann, CEO and co-founder of TransferWise said,

“TransferWise is on a mission to move money around the world in a cost efficient, quick and transparent way.”

“Integrating Visa Direct further eases the transfer process and brings us another step closer to achieving our mission.”

TransferWise will launch the Visa Direct-powered service in Spain, with plans to follow up in Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Hungary, and Romania and then scale it throughout Europe and worldwide in 2020.

Visa Direct allows for safe, convenient, and real-time funds delivery to financial accounts via card credentials.

Unimpressed by Ripple’s Partner Network

About a year back, TransferWise indicated excitement over the growth of Ripple’s global payment solution but said blockchain has its own set of challenges.

At that time, TransferWise chairman and co-founder Taavet Hinrikus said,

“If every bank in the world was going through the Ripple network, it would be amazing. Yet how many banks are using Ripple today in production? It’s a very short list.”

Ripple’s partner list has now increased to 300 but TransferWise still might not have any plans in the near future.

Ripple Partners Working with Visa Direct

Visa Direct’s growing partners’ list also includes Ripple members. As we reported last week, MoneyGram expanded its service to Span and the Philippines and is planning to launch in additional countries in the coming months.

This partnership had a successful launch in the US where 50% of users are brand new to MoneyGram. Moreover, indicators show custom retention rates outperforming expectations.

Before MoneyGram, last month, Ripple partner Nium that joined RippleNet in February 2018 and was the first one ODL to settle transactions between US dollar and Mexican peso, partnered with Visa Direct.

Interestingly, Earthport, a cross-border payment company that joined Ripple in 2014 was acquired by Visa earlier this year.

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Author: AnTy

Bitcoin Scammers Target Head of $230 Billion Fund In Recent Facebook Scam for ‘Bitcoin Pro’

Ho Ching, the CEO of Temasek, a $230 billion fund, was the latest person to be targeted by scammers who are behind a famous Facebook Bitcoin scam called Bitcoin Pro. Ching’s image was used in Facebook ads for the crypto scam, a local media outlet reported.

In order to get more credibility for its fake investment, the scammers of Bitcoin Pro also used the logos of several reputable media outlets and promised unbelievably high returns on investment. Several fake testimonials are also used on the official site of the scam.

One of the ads details a fake call between Ching and an allegedly major bank head. In the call, Ching asks the bank manager to stop divulging secrets such as Bitcoin Pro, as this information should not be leaked to everybody. Previous incarnations of the same scam used people like Lee Hsien Loong, the Prime Minister of Singapore.

The scam is pretty simple, it is one of that old promises of “get rich quick”. To enter, someone has to give information such as credit card details, phone numbers and email addresses, which can be easily used to impersonate the victim later.

Right now, Facebook claims to be working to disable any accounts that may be linked to scammers. The social media platform is having trouble with scammers in many countries and is currently blocking profiles, but the scammers always find a way to appear once more.

According to Facebook, this is a clear violation of the guidelines and all pages associated with the scams and all ads will be removed as soon as possible.

“}” data-sheets-userformat=”{“2″:13057,”3”:{“1″:0},”11″:3,”12″:0,”15″:”Open Sans”,”16″:11}”>Latest Crypto Scams and Cybersecurity Updates

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Author: Gabriel Machado