Popular Crypto Payment Processor BitPay To Add Support For Ethereum (ETH) Soon

BitPay, one of the main crypto payment providers in the world now, has recently announced that it would start to support Ethereum-based payments. Ethereum (ETH) is the second-largest token by market cap, which makes this a huge upgrade in the services.

According to the press release, all companies that are already using the services will be free to use Ethereum without having to do anything.

The upgrade will be rolled out automatically as soon as it is ready. Unfortunately, no actual date for the launch was given on the press release. It will also be possible to store the new token on the company’s wallet, which is set to be upgraded to hold it.

BitPay was originally launched back in 2011 and it offered the users the option to pay with Bitcoin (BTC) and then Bitcoin Cash (BCH) after the hard fork. So far, the company’s product has been used to pay over $3 million USD since its creation.

Vitalik Buterin, the co-founder and public face of the Ethereum network, has commented on the update, affirming that it is very exciting to see such a leading company integrating ETH with its payment system. This, he believes, will open a whole new channel for innovation.

In related news, BitPay has been working to improve the security of its systems. The company has just introduced new verification methods this year and will now start to require more information about the users before they are able to use the product. They will need to give their passports of social security numbers before they create an account, for instance.

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Author: Gabriel Machado

Jack Dorsey’s Square Crypto To Invest $100,00 In The “Future Of Money”

The crypto initiative of payment company Square, Square crypto recently announced that they are allocating $100,000 on grants to the BTCPay Foundation.

Square integrated bitcoin in 2018, when its Cash App began selling the cryptocurrency to users. This service generated over $190 million in revenue over the first two quarters of this year, yielding shy of $3 million in gross profit. Dorsey said Square’s exposure to various payment methods could help the company “weather storms,” referring to economic downturns.

The announcement for the news said:

“BTCPay represents everything we love about open-source bitcoin projects. It exemplifies the ideals of our community and promotes adoption by letting merchants accept bitcoin, control their private keys, and self-validate their coins. It also creates powerful real-world applications for bitcoin without sacrificing user experience or requiring trusted third parties.”

In an earlier interview, Dorsey had said:

“In the long term it will help us be more and more like an internet company where we can launch a product … and the whole world can use it, instead of having to go from market to market, to bank to bank to bank and from regulatory body to the regulatory body.”

Square’s Cash App is reportedly testing a free stock trading service. In a recent interview, Dorsey revealed that the company was hiring five open-source engineers to work entirely on making the crypto ecosystem better.

Steve Lee, Square Crypto’s project manager had earlier said in an interview:

“We are very, very pro-Bitcoin. There is more than enough work for us to do there. That said, we are open to emerging use cases and technologies that complement Bitcoin.”

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Author: Sritanshu Sinha

Breez Enables Credit Card Use When Buying Lightning-Powered Bitcoin Now

Breez, a new payment startup, has recently unveiled the latest feature of its project, which is set to allow lightning-based BTC purchases directly from its app. These purchases are only possible because of a recent partnership that the company started with MoonPay.

The services will initially be available in a total of 35 different countries and have the goal of simplifying lightning payments.

In case you do not know, the Lightning Network is a layer 2 scaling solution for the BTC network. It was launched at the beginning of 2018 and it has gone quite a long way so far in fixing these problems despite a rocky launch. The technology is still experimental, but it is starting to shape up as a great solution.

According to the CEO of Breez, Roy Sheinfeld, this may even look like a somewhat simple achievement, but nobody has done it before.

Since the start, Breez was always about being more than a simple wallet, the service was meant to be a “holistic experience”, Sheinfeld affirmed. It needs to be UX focused and to provide solutions that no one has been able to provide before in order to make its clients happy.

Before now, the users needed to buy BTC before they could enter the Lightning Network and then move the BTC from its normal wallet to an LN wallet. This new option cuts time and allows the users to enjoy a more streamlined experience.

According to Sheinfeld, users will not need to verify any information if they want to buy less than 150 EUR worth of BTC. To buy more than that, they would need to pass a Know Your Customer (KYC) verification first.

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Author: Gabriel Machado

Baton Systems Secures $12 Million For Scaling Of Bank To Bank Blockchain Platform

Payment solutions are vital to the mainstream adoption of cryptocurrency, and there have been a variety of crypto payment systems developed over time. These different payment systems assist blockchain applications to be adopted easily in various industries.

Baton Systems, a blockchain development firm that has developed a blockchain-based bank to bank payment solution has raised $12 million in its latest funding round. Trinity Ventures led the Series A round of funding and the funds acquired will be used to scale the bank to bank blockchain payment system.

Use of Payment System

The blockchain-based company has created a system that is compatible with legacy systems and can be used hand in hand with them. According to the blockchain firm, more than $13 billion worth of payments have been processed through the system as the company seeks to implement solutions for its clearinghouse counterparties and various other market participants.

Interoperability with legacy systems means that companies and banks which make use of the payment system do not need to change anything about their existing business systems. Baton Systems said that their platform could be fully integrated with any collateral and cash systems belonging to financial institutions without disturbing the current business processes, ledgers or systems.

The blockchain-powered system creates transparency and efficiency in settlement of payments. It also provides its users with instant reports and reconciliation of the transactions to ensure that all participants are kept in the loop about the events around a deal. Arjun Jayaram, Baton Systems’ CEO, clarified that while the payment solution uses distributed digital ledgers, it does not involve the use of cryptocurrencies or digital assets.

Baton Systems and its Position in Financial Systems in the World

Baton Systems is a key player in the creation of bank to bank payment solutions in the blockchain industry, and the firm has been involved with many institutions in a bid to implement these systems. The firm was part of the creation of the Bank of England’s first blockchain-based real-time gross settlement system. This pilot program influenced the Bank of England’s decision to construct its RTFS system which uses blockchain technology.

Last year, the blockchain company participated in Barclays’ hackathon and won an award for the best solution for the support of ISDA’s Common Domain Model (CDM) industry standard, which is applied to derivatives. This support was extended to the firm’s blockchain platform, and this allows their clients to bring their existing derivatives and swaps to the blockchain platform.

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Author: Ali Raza

South Korea’s Largest Payment Processor To Use KT’s Blockchain To Settle Rewards

The largest payment processor company in South Korea, BC Card, has recently started a new partnership with KT, the second-largest telecom company of the country. With this new partnership, KT is set to use its Hyperledger Fabric technology to create a new rewards settlement system for the other company.

According to the press release, the blockchain will be used to process the orders to exchange the rewards used by the company. For instance, vouchers, affinity partner points, VIP points and other prizes.

Until now, BC Card was handling all these rewards in a manual way. The idea of using the blockchain is to be able to do it faster started this year and several improvements were made since then. In fact, this is a trend that most companies in the region are following. The blockchain provides several options and upgrades, so there is no reason not to use it.

For instance, with the current improvements, the processing times of these activities were reduced by 50% and the number of errors was also considerably reduced as well.

It was also reported that the company is looking to develop other blockchain-related activities, but they may take some time to be started.

KT was a good choice as a partner because the company was one of the early adopters of the blockchain in South Korea. It uses it for around a year and it is part of a consortium created by Samsung Electronics to create blockchain solutions that can be used in digital identification systems.

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Author: Gabriel Machado

BitPay Starts Requiring Identification For Purchases of Over $3,000 Worth of Bitcoin (BTC)

The famous crypto payment company BitPay has recently decided to take new measures in order to stop money laundering activities. Starting now, all users from the company who wish to buy over $3,000 USD worth of Bitcoin (BTC) or get a refund of over $1,000 USD will need to pass a verification process first.

According to the company, the change in the process will happen together with the implementation of the new BitPay Dashboard page, which will be the new “home page” of the users.

This process will be done by posting an identification document with a picture on the site. The information will be protected, obviously. Fortunately, the identification will need to be done only once. In case the user does not comply, the money will stay in the account, but will not be able to be withdrawn.

As it is known, the crypto community is very skeptical of this kind of measure. Most people distrust these companies as custodians of their information because they are often hacked and their personal documents may be leaked. BitPay was hacked in 2015, which does not add a lot of legitimacy to the move. At the time, 5,000 BTC from clients were lost to hackers.

The company has promised that it will use highly secure ways to store the data, but the doubts continue. Unfortunately, as regulation starts to get more strict in the industry, users do not have several choices but to comply or to keep changing the services they use, as more of them start to demand identification every day.

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Author: Gabriel Machado

Has Litecoin (LTC) Been Recognized by the IMF as a Legitimate Payment Token?

  • The IMF report which refers to Litecoin as being a payment token dates back to October 2018.
  • As many of our regular readers are probably already aware of, the Litecoin ecosystem recently underwent a ‘halving’, as a result of which, block rewards associated with the currency have now dropped to 12.5 LTC.

As per a tweet released by the co-founder of the Litecoin Foundation — Xinxi Wang — a few days back, a spokesperson for the International Monetary Fund (IMF) recently referred to Litecoin as a payment token.

However, this news has not been received with the fervour that one might have expected, since many from within the global crypto community still have their doubts regarding this announcement.

The problem stems from the fact that the report which Xinxi is using to back his claims is from late last year. However, looking at the document, one has to admit that it clearly refers to LTC as being a digital method of payment.

Many skeptics have pointed out that there was no reason for Xinxi to wait for nearly 10 months before making this announcement.

Similarly, a lot of people believe that LTCs name was used in the report simply as an example and not as a standalone case. While Litecoin has been mentioned in above stated IMF report, none of the officials working for the organization have ever come forth and recognized the digital currency as such.

With that being said, the IMF seems to have an open mind towards crypto and is willing to make such a recognition in the future.

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Author: Shiraz J

BitPay Temporarily Halts Its Operations In Germany Citing Confusion In Crypto Payment Regulations

BitPay-Temporarily-Halts-Its-Operations-In-Germany-Citing-Confusion-In-Crypto-Payment-Regulations

Giant Bitcoin and Bitcoin Cash payment processor BitPay has announced that it is temporarily withdrawing its operations in Germany.

In an e-mail sent to Cointelegraph on 1 August, BitPay confirmed that it had suspended its activities in Germany.

In the sent e-mail, the BitPay head of Public Relations, Jan Jahosky explained that the company has agreed to halt the provision of its services in Germany in view of the coming into force of the new regulations, scheduled for next year.

However, it seems that the company is already considering adding support for the German market again in the future:

“Germany has publicly stated that it wants the crypto companies to hold a license starting in 2020. We have suspended our operations in Germany while evaluating the need to obtain a German license.”

German Companies No Longer Accept Bitcoins

Meanwhile, the computer news site Computer Base today announced that it will no longer be able to support Bitcoin as a payment procedure precisely because of the BitPay suspension.

However, the company has also agreed that the majority of its users pay via PayPal or bank transfer, while Bitcoin does not seem to be a particularly widespread payment method. However, there are alternative, self-hosted and open-source payment processing services, such as BTCPay Server, which lessen reliance on secondary providers.

Reports by Cointelegraph state that starting next year, the new anti-money laundering regulations will come into force in Germany, which requires companies in the crypto sector to have a license issued by the German Federal Financial Supervisory Authority.

In the recent past, Germany has been in the forefront urging other European countries to adopt tough regulations on crypto-based initiatives. The country’s finance minister is on record saying that cryptos won’t be allowed to replace the Euro. Germany’s policymakers have also called for tough measures to curb any threats posed by Facebook’s Libra crypto.

Is Germany becoming anti-crypto going by its recent policies and regulations? Share your thoughts with us in the comments section.

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Author: Joseph Kibe

SpankChain Rolls Out SpankPay To Allow Its Users To Pay For Adult Content Using Cryptos

SpankChain-Rolls-Out-SpankPay-To-Allow-Its-Users-To-Pay-For-Adult-Content-Using-Cryptos

Adult entertainment provider, SpankChain has announced the launching of SpankPay, a crypto payment platform that users can use to pay for adult-rated content.

The Ethereum-based adult content platform is partnering with two partners who have already integrated with the platform; SkyPrivate which anonymously links models with their clients using skype as well as Discord and JustFor.Fans which offers different forms of adult entertainment.

According to an official statement from the firm, Spankpay will allow its customers to use various cryptos to pay comprising of Bitcoin (BTC), Ether (ETH) and Litecoin (LTC), as well as the “privacy coins” Zcash (ZEC) and Monero (XMR).

SpankChain’s CEO, Ameen Soleimani explained about the new payment service:

“With SpankPay, we are bringing immediate value to adult merchants by helping them accept crypto, avoid chargebacks, and reach a global audience.”

According to Soleimani, the new payment service platform would charge a 0.5 percent transaction fee.

Officials from the two pioneer partners praised the new payment service platform saying that blockchain-based infrastructure will offer crucial value in the adult content sector. JustFor.Fans creator Dominic Ford stated the following:

“Using SpankChain, we don’t have to worry about being shut down due to the fact that we are an adult company. We’d much rather support our fellow adult solution providers than use outside solutions that are potentially not adult-friendly.”

On his part SkyPrivate CEO, Alex Bluck stated that the partnership between his company and SpankChain will help to ensure that people in various industries are given the same treatment and equal rights when it comes to payment of services.

SpankChain has been in the fore line in creating a blockchain-based economic and technological infrastructure that enhance adult-rated content. The firm has already created a camsite referred to as Spanklive that will be integrated with the new crypto payment platform in the near future.

The new payment platform comes several months after SpankChain lost funds in a crypto after a hack in October 2018 that comprised of customer holdings. The firm was however able to persuade the hacker to return the lost funds and agreed to reimburse the affected users.

SpankChain joins the fray in adult content industry who are now accepting crypto payment for products and services offered. In April last year, Pornhub revealed that it had inked a deal with Verge to enable its users pay through cryptos.

At the beginning of this year, one of the largest crypto payment service offeror BitPay revealed that about $1 billion of its revenues in 2018 and cash from the adult entertainment had grown by more than 255 percent from 2017.

Some adult entertainment companies have even taken it a notch higher with CamSoda launching a platform which makes sex toys to vibrate when the prices of Bitcoin, Litecoin, or Ethereum increased.

Do you believe launching crypto payment services by adult entertainment companies will help to spur their earnings? Keep the conversation going in the comments section.

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Author: Joseph Kibe

Judge for QuadrigaCX Case Approves $1.6 Million in Fees to Be Paid in Retribution to Affected Firms

Judge for QuadrigaCX Case Approves $1.6 Million in Fees to Be Paid in Retribution to Affected Firms
  • A judge overseeing the QuadrigaCX case has approved payment to multiple firms.
  • Bankruptcy proceedings for QuadrigaCX are still ongoing.

In the long case of QuadrigaCX, there are many creditors and firms that have been seeking retribution from the now-defunct exchange.

In an effort to reconcile these funds, Nova Scotia Supreme Court Judge Darlene Jamieson approved over $1.6 million in fees to go to these affected firms. Jamieson also stated that the activities and fees taken on by:

  • Ernst & Young (EY)
  • Stikeman Elliot, the legal counsel for EY
  • Kirkland & Ellis, the American legal counsel for EY
  • Miller Thomson, the representative counsel
  • Cox & Palmer, the representative counsel

According to the judge, there’s been no opposition to the activities and fees. She stated,

“I approve the fees and activities of the monitor during the CCAA proceedings and the fees presented towards legal counsel.”

EY had a nearly impossible task of trying to recover the missing cryptocurrency and fiat holdings of QuadrigaCX, considering that it seemed to be dispersed to multiple third parties. Their work also included attempts to determine if Quadriga had the funds that it said, according to the judge. Jamieson added,

“The monitor’s work has been extensive in administering the CCAA proceeding and seeking to recover funds on behalf of Quadriga and its affected users.”

Ultimately, the judge explained that EY came up against “complicated factors,” like the lack of records on the accounts, and the way that QuadrigaCX stored their information with third parties.

This company marks the first cryptocurrency-based insolvency case in the country and has shown many unique traits that are unique to this type of case, which included “requiring specialized resources for the monitor’s investigation.”

The legal counsel for EY, along with EY itself, charged $1.3 million ($1.7 million CAD). The other representative counsel charged:

  • EY: $592,396.57 ($778,444.90 CAD)
  • Stikeman: $684,654.63 ($899,677.57 CAD)
  • Kirkland & Ellis: $14,367.27 ($18,876.44 CAD)
  • Miller Thomson: $302,720.47 ($397,793.00 CAD)
  • Cox & Palmer: $37,023.05 ($48,650.53 CAD)

Overall, to each of the companies, the judge approved $1,631,161.99 ($2,143,442.44 CAD) in costs. These payments will be drawn from the recovered funds of the creditor accounts, which contain about $25 million USD ($33 million CAD).

There is still $23.4 million USD ($31 million CAD) to be provided to the creditors in this case, though EY is working to gain another $9 million USD ($12 million CAD) in the sale of some of Gerald Cotten’s estate’s assets. Cotten, as many people remember, was the founder and CEO of QuadrigaCX.

Miller Thomson had been pushing for the claims process to begin for creditors. Former users of the platform have until August 31st to fill out a form, which will include their Quadriga account number, name, address, phone number, and the amount of crypto and fiat held in their account.

For former users that are unsure of what their holdings were before these proceedings can check https://userbalance.quadrigacxtrustee.com/, which was set up by EY. If the user disagrees with the amount shown, they will need to provide their own documentation to support the claim amount they intend to pursue. Miller Thomson’s website has guidance on how to do so.

The court proceedings involving QuadrigaCX have come up against so many roadblocks since January, when the late CEO’s wife filed for creditor protection. Cotten passed away in December and was believed to have taken his passwords to the firm’s exchange wallets with him.

Jennifer Robertson, Cotten’s widow, stated that there were 115,000 users that were owed about $190 million, but she said she was unable to access it, due to Cotten being the only one with information about the accounts’ private keys.

As the investigation continued, controversy and drama unfolded that Cotten may have taken the funds of his customers for personal use, which may have included margin trading. By March, EY stated that they were unable to find or even account for about $100 million in cryptocurrencies, even though Quadriga claimed to have held this amount.

EY quickly moved to put the exchange into bankruptcy, following filings for creditor protection, indicating that the Canadian crypto exchange was unlikely to bounce back. The motion was approved by Nova Scotia Supreme Court Judge Michael Wood, and the CCAA proceeding was paired with the bankruptcy efforts.

With the new ruling from Jamieson, the only proceedings still going on will be that of bankruptcy.

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Author: Krystle M