UNI Holders Continue to Increase as Uniswap Dominance Jumps 24% in Just Over a Month

While centralized cryptocurrency exchanges struggle to live, with at least 75 of them closed down due to hacks and scams so far this year, Decentralized Exchanges (DEX) are leading 2020.

These past couple of weeks, even big exchanges like KuCoin and BitMEX weathered some storms.

Decentralized Finance (DeFi) has some part to play in this. With DEXs growing rapidly, as evident from its volume hitting $24 billion, an increase from $11.6 billion last month, a shift has been seen from CEXs to DEXs.

Until last year, the total monthly DEX volume never saw $500 million, and in 2020, it never went below this figure.

As we reported, the popular DEX Uniswap that saw $15 billion traded last month actually surpassed the volume on the leading centralized cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase. Increasing every month, Uniswap volume also makes up for 65% of all DEX volume as such the fourth largest crypto exchange by volume.

Liquidity on the platform also continues to hit new highs, keeping above $2 billion in October.

Interestingly, while the total value locked (TVL) in the DeFi sector decreased from $11.23 billion this week to $10.18 billion, TVL in Uniswap increased 12% to over $2 billion, becoming the first DeFi project to hit $2 billion in total crypto funds locked.

Uniswap is the dominant force in the DeFi ecosystem, with the amount of ETH locked in the project hitting a new high of 3.2 million. Uniswap’s dominance currently sits at 21.9%, up 24% from the beginning of last month, as per DeFi Pulse.

Its governance token UNI is currently trading at $2.64 in the red, down nearly 36% in the past seven days.

However, despite the recent fall in UNI’s price, along with the rest of the DeFi tokens, the number of UNI holders continues to increase daily.

As per data source IntoTheBlock, as of Oct. 5, the number of addresses holding UNI tokens reached a new high of 85.02k addresses.

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Author: AnTy

YouTube Files to Dismiss Ripple and CEO Brad Garlinghouse’s XRP Giveaway Scam Lawsuit

YouTube is seeking to dismiss a lawsuit filed against them by Ripple earlier in April. The video-sharing Google subsidiary has been accused of promoting XRP giveaway scams, causing reputational damage to Ripple and the firm’s CEO, Brad Garlinghouse.

In a response filing on July 20, YouTube argued that as an interactive computer service provider, it should is not liable for content published by third parties as per Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act.

Ripple had sued YouTube because it failed to control giveaway scams to an extent where a particular individual was scammed $15,000. According to Ripple’s argument, the video-sharing giant had not only facilitated financial losses due to scams but also increased their reputational risk as a firm. In the motion, Ripple suggested a couple of actions to taken be by YouTube:

“This lawsuit calls on the video platform to do a number of things … First, to be more aggressive and proactive in identifying these scams, before they’re posted. Second, faster removal of these scams once they are identified and lastly, to not profit from these scams.”

In its defense, YouTube has come out to ask for the dismissal of the charges filed by Ripple, noting that it cannot be tied to the giveaway scams. As per YouTube’s argument, they are not at fault since they did not willingly engage any of the third parties or contribute to the content posted.

The firm went on to state that the Ad’s approval or endorsements could not hold water, adding that it always shuts down such scams when given a heads up. Basing the argument on Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, YouTube’s filings highlighted,

“Plaintiffs have sued YouTube for allegedly failing to do enough to prevent third-party fraudsters from hijacking various YouTube user accounts and perpetrating a crypto-currency scam through those stolen accounts.

YouTube did not orchestrate or participate in that scam, and after being notified about fraudulent content posted by the hijacked accounts, YouTube removed it. Plaintiffs’ state-law claims are barred by Section 230 of the CDA, 47 U.S.C. § 230 (“Section 230”), and all their claims fail of their own accord.”

While this is still in motion, YouTube has again been sued by the co-founder of Apple, Steve Wozniak, who claims that the platform allowed malicious players to initiate Bitcoin giveaway scams in his likeness. Apple’s co-founder, along with 18 other litigators, now want YouTube to pull the scams down, as well as compensate them for the punitive damages.

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Author: Edwin Munyui

Blockchain Developer Platform Releases Alchemy Build, A Tool Suite for Faster Production

Alchemy, a blockchain startup, focuses on building developers’ tools to help them become more productive and focus more on actual product development. The blockchain startup boasts some of the most influential artists in the 21st century among its investors, which include the likes of Jay-Z and Will Smith. The startup raised $15 million in Series A funding round in 2019.

The startup announced its new product, called Alchemy Build suite, which consists of debugging and search tools and promises to reduce the amount of time spent by developers on issues not related to the actual product.

The suite primarily consists of 4 tools, which include an explorer to help developers quickly locate the bugs and errors in the system, a composer to help developers create prototypes, a visualizer to find stuck transactions, and a debugger.

Alchemy a Big Hit Among Ethereum Based Product Makers

Alchemy is relatively unknown for the amount of work and collaboration it has seen since its inception. Alchemy’s platform is actively used by Ethereum based products and Dapps developers for developing the infrastructure of their products. Its client list includes the famous gaming dApp CryptoKitties, Binance Wallet, and Opera Web Platform.

Nikil Viswanathan, the co-founder of Alchemy, believes their latest product in the form of a Build suite would enhance and help developers to create a better product in less time. He said:

“Ultimately, this means that…developers [can] build products faster, which means that the users get more products, and more innovation in the blockchain space happens overall.”

The startup’s goal has been to remove the hurdles in the path of developers, and many firms who have partnered or used Alchemy’s tools are a testament to that.

The digital asset marketplace Ethereum-based, OpenSea, has also used Alchemy’s tool for building on resonated the same. Devin Finzer, the CEO of OpenSera said:

“Alchemy Build has been crucial in helping us build and debug our global marketplace.”

Pantera Capital, one of the leading investors during the Series A funding round, applauded the progress that the startup has made since its beginning. Paul Veradittakit, a partner, said:

“Alchemy Build is improving the lives of Ethereum developers by leaps and bounds, helping drive the ecosystem towards its potential.”

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Author: James W

Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) Calls For Crypto Businesses to Be Registered by June 30th

The U.K. Financial Watchdog, FCA, has reminded crypto-oriented businesses to register with them by June 30, 2020, so that the applications can be processed within the next six months.

According to the FCA, entities that haven’t registered by then, will not be legally recognized come the Jan 2021 deadline.

The FCA does not register “any businesses that started carrying on business in the UK immediately before 10 January 2020 and are not registered by the FCA by the 10 January 2021 deadline will have to cease carrying on business.,” reads the FCA statement.

Following a spike in crypto-related crime, the FCA was tasked in regulating this space as the Fifth Anti-Money Laundering Directive (5AMLD) came into action at the beginning of the year. This move is expected to reduce financial crime such as money laundering and terror financing, which appear to have found new avenues in crypto ecosystems. The call for registration is, therefore, no surprise to crypto firms operating within the U.K.

Notably, firms that previously operated in the FinTech space under U.K.’s Financial Services and Market Acts 2000, but have now scaled to crypto services, will be required to undertake a new registration. According to the U.K. regulator, this approach will help them in proactive supervision of crypto businesses:

“The FCA will proactively supervise firms” compliance with the new regulations, and will take swift action where firms fall short of desired standards.”

The 5AMLD & FATF Oversight Frameworks

To effectively regulate the crypto space, FCA will rely on the 5AMLD and FATF’s ‘travel rule‘ as underlying regulatory frameworks. With both in play, crypto entities will be required to provide information such as future projections, governance, employees, customers, and business objectives, amongst others.

Also, the FATF travel rule provides that crypto exchanges should share client information upon request when executing B2B transactions. This initiative affects around 39 countries, including China, which are expected to have complied upon a revisit by the FATF.

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Author: Edwin Munyui

Six Blockchain Startups Selected On World Economic Forum’s (WEF) 2020 Tech Pioneers List

The World Economic Forum (WEF) has announced the list of technology pioneers, and among them were six blockchain-based startups. The announcement was made earlier today through the official WEF Twitter account.

The six firms consist of:

  • MakerDAO
  • Chainlink
  • Veridum Labs
  • Lightning Labs
  • Ripio
  • Elliptic

The WEF Technology Pioneers of 2020 list brings together 100 startups from across the globe, which are set to introduce or pioneer new technologies as well as innovations in different sectors, including Artificial Technology (AI), Robotics, Internet of Things (IoT) and Machine Learning.

The listing of technology pioneers by WEF started in 2000, where outstanding tech pioneers are acknowledged and recognized. The startups are incorporated in various WEF initiatives as well as events to shed more light and insights into various critical world discussions.

According to WEF, the six blockchain-based startups will be incorporated into the organization’s initiatives, events, and activities for two years to bring their fresh thinking in various global discussions.

The six blockchain startups will also become members of the WEF’s Global Innovators Community, which is an invite-only group bringing together the globe’s most promising startups.

The six startups will also be part of WEF Strategic Intelligence ecosystem that assists industry leaders as well as policy and decision-makers to navigate different transformations in various industries, economies as well as global issues. In other words, the six startups will be taken as experts to help in making important decisions by global leaders and decision-makers.

Blockchain-based startups have been recognized previously with Bitfury, which offers blockchain solutions, making it to the list last year. In 2015, Ripple made it to the list.

The recognition is essential as it helps the startups to access a wide range of expert insights as well as the market. The startups can exchange notes with other firms from across the globe. The listing will also give the six blockchain startups the much-needed exposure to potential clients.

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Author: Joseph Kibe

Bitcoin Cash & Bitcoin SV Halving Next Week to Put Selling Pressure on Bitcoin as Well

  • Bitcoin Cash (BCH) and Bitcoin SV (BSV) halvings to “drastically” expose them to potential 51% attacks
  • A cycle of decreased profit margins, increased selling, capitulation, and a culling of the least efficient miners to take place

Crypto community is excited about the Bitcoin reward halving next month but interestingly bitcoin forks’ halving is here.

Bitcoin Core’s (BTC) fork Bitcoin Cash (BCH) and the latter’s fork Bitcoin SV (BSV) will go through their respective block reward halving on April 8 and April 9 next week.

Meanwhile, Bitcoin Cash has laid off 50% of its employees just days before its halving.

More Miners will Turn to Bitcoin

Both these Bitcoin’s forks will have their halving one month prior to bitcoin because of the very rapid block generation in Bitcoin Cash which started right after its fork in August 2017. However, the block production rate was later normalized with an update of the difficulty adjustment algorithm.

Now, these early halvings might have a “dramatic effect” on both BCH and BSV’s hash rate, according to Arcane Research. Currently, a vast majority of this hash rate share (94.8%) belongs to the world’s leading cryptocurrency and both BCH and BSV have a meager less than 3% share.

Source: Arcane Research

The halving event could be expected to have at least a temporary halving of the hash rate as the miners switch to mine BTC because mining Bitcoin will be more profitable than BCH and BSV.

Both the forks can capture the share only if their price or fees increases drastically or hash rate halves.

A decline in hash rate means both Bitcoin Cash and Bitcoin SV will be “drastically” more exposed for potential 51% attacks.

Things could change when Bitcoin halving occurs in mid-May, however, the effect on BTC would be “minuscule” because it already accounts for almost 95% of SHA-256 hash rate.

Selling Pressure for All Three

In its latest report, Coin Metrics also discusses the effect of halving and that,

“miners are a continuous and significant source of selling pressure that has a pro-cyclical impact on prices.”

Miner-led selling pressure for all three of the cryptocurrencies is currently high which is only expected to increase further as all of them undergo their halvings. This is because all three assets share the same SHA-256 mining algorithm and miners can “seamlessly” redirect their hash power to the digital asset that provides the highest return.

BCH and BSV halving will force miners to direct more hash power to Bitcoin which is expected to increase the difficulty and further squeeze profit miners for all miners. Coin Metrics states,

“We expect miners to follow a cycle of decreased profit margins, increased selling, capitulation, and a culling of the least efficient miners from the network.

Once this cycle is complete, the miner industry should return to a healthier state that is supportive of future price increases.”

At the time of writing, Bitcoin (BTC) has been trading at $6,750 BTC -0.61, Bitcoin Cash (BCH) at $235 BCH -2.65, and Bitcoin SV (BSV) at $177 BSV -1.86.

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Author: Bitcoin Exchange Guide News Team

Massive Lawsuit Brought Against Consumer Financial Protection Bureau by PayPal

  • PayPal says that the regulations implemented by the CFPB force them to make “misleading and confusing” disclosures to customers.
  • The payment processing firm is asking to be compensated for the attorney fees and cost of taking this case to court.

PayPal is one of the biggest payment processors in the world, and they’ve served millions of customers on various merchant websites. However, they have recently gotten involved in a lawsuit against the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. According to PayPal, the CFPB has required them to make disclosures about its fees with “misleading and confusing” statements.

The lawsuit, which was filed on December 11th by PayPal, states that the agency seems to be unclear on the substantial ways that digital wallets and prepaid products (like their prepaid debit cards) differ. A court filing revealed to CoinTelegraph shows that the CFPB requires both digital wallets and prepaid products to be regulated under the same rules. However, this type of regulation for the digital wallets that PayPal offers is “fundamentally ill-suited,” as PayPal states.

Within this lawsuit, there’s a specific CFPB rule in question – “Prepaid Accounts Under the Electronic Fund Transfer Act (Regulation E) and the Truth in Lending Act (Regulation Z) Rule.” The rule was originally implemented in April this year, and it states that PayPal must provide users with a disclosure on the fees that are not charged by the company. PayPal claims that the rule also doesn’t properly demonstrate what most customers actually pay for their fees.

Essentially, the rule states that the descriptions of these fees on PayPal that “undermine PayPal’s own clear disclosures” need to be simplified. Furthermore, the rule bans them from offering information to consumers that would otherwise allow them to make “an informed decision,” and instructed the firm to tell their customers the worst possible fee that they may come up against, “even if the fee would rarely be incurred.”

In the filling, PayPal added, “The Rule mandates that customers be given — and actually view — ‘short form’ fee disclosures. The requirements for this short form disclosure are extremely prescriptive and rigid. Certain fee categories must be placed in specified positions and presented in certain font sizes […] The Rule further prohibits PayPal from including explanatory phrases within the disclosure box to describe the nature of these fee categories.”

Along with the petition for the ruling by CFPB to be deemed unconstitutional, the push to relieve them of it also asks that PayPal be awarded the costs and attorney fees by the court, as they deem appropriate.

Andrew Rossow, an internet attorney from Ohio, said that the lawsuit from PayPal makes it clear that there are many regulators – CFPB included – don’t actually understand the new technologies being launched in the industry today, like blockchain, artificial intelligence, and others.

Rossow added, “I think the CFPB’s recent expansion of Regulation E (Prepaid Accounts Under the Electronic Fund Transfer Act) and Regulation Z (Truth in Lending Act) was premature because it still doesn’t understand, in my opinion, how these digital wallets (which includes cryptocurrency wallets—hot and cold) operate and the parties that involved in even the most ‘basic’ of digital money transactions.”

If the court sides with PayPal, the progress could be huge for the cryptocurrency industry. After all, PayPal isn’t just standing up for itself – it is “defending the business operation of each of its competitors, protecting themselves from unwarranted and almost endless liability at any given point in time,” says Rossow.

PayPal has recently revealed their substantial quarterly profits and has been recording new users and more transactions. However, the platform recently cut some of their partnerships, including their ties to Pornhub and their models.

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Author: Krystle M

Kraken Security Labs Discovers ShapeShift’s KeepKey Crypto Wallet Can Be Hacked Easily For $75

KeepKey hardware wallets are affected by a flaw that would make them vulnerable to attacks if a hacker has access to the device for around 15 minutes. This is according to a recent report released by Kraken Security Labs and published in a blog post on December 10.

KeepKey Crypto Hardware Wallet Affected By Flaw

As per the report released by Kraken, an attacker would rely on voltage glitching to extract the encrypted key of the user from KeepKey wallets. After this, the encrypted seed can be cracked and the PIN can be easily hacked with brute force. The researchers claim that it is possible to perform this attack with a consumer-friendly glitching device for just $75.

In addition to it, the report explains that it would not be possible to stop these attacks from happening with a software update from the company. In order to solve this issue, a needed  complete hardware redesign, which is certainly expensive to perform and very costly for users.

The company claims that they are already aware of these attacks but their goal is to protect users against remote attacks that could happen to online, desktop or mobile wallets, among others.

It is very important for users to be sure that if they lose their cryptocurrency wallet, the funds could be potentially accessed by attackers and the funds could be at risk of being stolen. The cryptocurrency market has many times been affected by hacks that were pointed at exchanges and other large holders of digital assets.

The report has also advised users to enable the BIP39 Passphrase with the KeepKey client in order to protect the crypto funds in the wallet. The passphrase is generally not user-friendly in practice but it is also not stored on the device, meaning it would not be vulnerable to this attack.

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Author: Carl T

EOS Network Downgraded To C- On Weiss Ratings For Centralization And Potential For Faking Activity

EOS network’s governance issues continue to haunt them as Weiss Ratings recently downgraded the network from B category to C-. Weiss Ratings also posted a Twitter thread explaining why they had to downgrade the project which was once hyped as “Ethereum Killer.”

Weiss Ratings in its tweet claimed that although the public sentiment was right behind the project in its hayday and the platform was known for being a fast, efficient and most important a decentralized ecosystem. However, in the past year, there has been a continuous decline in the decentralization aspect where major whales control the majority of the token flow which could be of a deep concern.

Weiss Ratings claimed that the top 100 EOS token holders who represented a meager 0.01% of the total token holders on the platform, has a whopping 68% of the voting power on the network. This means these whales can easily manipulate the network as per their will.

One of the main reasons that the EOS network was lightening fast compared to the likes of Bitcoin or Ethereum because the platform has locked the number of block producers to just 21 which means any update on the leader had to go through these 21 block producers. Compare it to Bitcoin which has over 9,000 nodes, thus each transaction on the network has to run through all these leaders to verify the authenticity of the transactions.

However, this feature which was considered as a boon for the network soon turned out to be a bane as it leads to centralization in governance. The recent case where it airdropped EIDOS token, which led to great congestion on the network. The congestion led to a very high operational fee and thus the whales who had the EOS tokens were able to pay for high transaction fees and hoard the EIDOS tokens.

Whales could Diverge Resources to Fake Activity

The Weiss Rating tweet also speculated that since the resources and control of the network are concentrated in the hands of very few, they could easily fake activities like doing a series of fake ghost transactions to heighten activity on the network.

This was even proven during the EIDOS airdrop when the network was registering transaction activity as high as 43 million per day, most of which were done towards gaining more free EIDOS. The EIDOS airdropped required users to send a minimum amount of EOS to an EIDOS wallet address and in return, an unspecified amount of EIDOS was sent back to users’ accounts.

EOS was trading at $2.75 at press time and has lost most of its gains from its yearly highs of $6.0. Looking at the string of controversies surrounding the altcoin, the team behind it would really need to rethink their strategy for the long run.

All of Today’s EOS Price Analysis, Chart Forecasts and Industry News

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Author: James W