South Korean Government to Decide on Cryptocurrency ICO Legalization in November

South Korean Government to Decide on Cryptocurrency ICO Legalization in November

A South Korean official has said

that the government is likely to announce its official stance on cryptocurrency ICOs in November. This statement was made during a National Assembly audit on Wednesday.

ICO Legalization: To be or Not to Be

According to The investor, Hong Nam-Ki, the chief of the Office for Government Policy Coordination, responding to a question raised on the government’s stance on

ICOs said:

We have had several discussions (on ICOs). Once the survey results are in by end-October, we plan to finalize the government’s stance.

In September the FSS commenced a study among some companies that are conducting or in the process of issuing an ICO in the country despite the ban. Various reports out of South Korea show a divide in government opinion in regards to Initial Coin Offerings. Also speaking at the National Assembly audit meeting, Choi Jong-Ku, chairman of the Financial Services Commission (FSC) reiterated the initial ban on ICOs. The chairman stressed the Commission’s stance to continue with the sweeping prohibition on cryptocurrency fundraising activities and

exchanges.

Although many people call for the government to allow initial coin offerings, there are still uncertainties related to such a move as well as the possibility of serious fallouts.

Meanwhile, Min Seong-woo, a member of the National Assembly is asking for the legalization of ICOs. The lawmaker while clamoring for ICO legalization also called for robust regulations to prevent speculation, money laundering, and fraud.

Current Cryptocurrency Regulatory Paradigm in South Korea

There is currently a ban on Initial Coin Offerings and anonymous crypto trading in South Korea. Despite the ban, the country is yet to release official regulations concerning cryptocurrency exchanges and trading. Throughout 2018, various reports have surfaced regarding drafted policies aimed at regulating the crypto space.

Earlier in the year, EWN reported on plans by the country’s legislative arm to ease crypto trading. In July, local media said that the FSC and FSS were working to create a favorable regulatory framework for the crypto exchange operators.

The Director of the KFIU (Korea Financial Intelligence Unit) has proposed stricter regulations for crypto exchanges, suggesting regulating exchanges similarly to commercial banks. In a country with zero tolerance for money laundering, legalizing ICOs which are currently viewed as a possible tool for money laundering and fraud, might take a while.

Article Produced By
Osato Avan-Nomayo

For quite by chance, I discovered Bitcoin in 2010 and I have been an ardent enthusiast ever since. I enjoy cryptography, mathematics, and theoretical physics. If I am not writing about cryptocurrency, I am attempting to beat my scrabble high score.

https://ethereumworldnews.com/south-korean-government-to-decide-on-cryptocurrency-ico-legalization-in-november/

Malta to Assist the Government of Vanuatu in Forming Blockchain and ICO Legislation

Malta to Assist the Government of Vanuatu in Forming Blockchain and ICO Legislation

The state authorities of Malta will assist the government

of the Pacific island nation of Vanuatu in forming blockchain regulations, the Vanuatu Daily Post reported Monday, Oct. 8. Minister of Foreign Affairs of Vanuatu Ralph Regenvanu has reportedly requested assistance from the Maltese government in forming blockchain legislation upon instructions from the Council of Ministers.

Speaking at a meeting with Maltese Prime Minister Dr. Joseph Muscat, and Parliamentary Secretary Silvio Schembri, Regenvanu noted the crucial role of adopting appropriate regulatory frameworks for the blockchain industry and Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs). In mid-September, the Reserve Bank of Vanuatu (RBV) issued a public warning on crypto, stating that digital currencies are “not recognized as legal tender in Vanuatu and are not issued or regulated by the bank,” according to Daily Post.

The statement subsequently raised concerns among local authorities, with state regulators suspending the issuance of Financial Dealers Licenses (FDL) to crypto and blockchain-related businesses until proper regulation is adopted. According to the report, Maltese authorities “immediately” responded to Regenvanu’s request, and offered assistance to the Vanuatu Government in developing proper legislation for the blockchain sphere.

Regenvanu also suggested the formation of a “Commonwealth of Blockchain Islands” for establishing blockchain regulatory standards. According to the Vanuatu Daily Post, Muscat “warmly welcomed the Minister’s recommendation.” In addition to providing training to both Ni-Vanuatu students and state regulators, and general technical assistance in blockchain regulation, Maltese financial authorities are also eager to contribute to Vanuatu’s financial oversight. In early July, the Parliament of Malta passed three bills that set a defined regulatory framework and legal environment for the crypto and blockchain industries.

Due to the high level of blockchain industry development, as well as increased awareness and openness to the cryptocurrency industry, the country has become a popular spot for crypto-related businesses, including major crypto exchanges lilke Binance, OKex, and BitPay. Recently, Muscat claimed that crypto is the “inevitable future of money,” while blockchain can create a more transparent and fair society. In October 2017, the Vanuatu government announced that the country accepts Bitcoin (BTC) as payment for its citizenship program, requiring a one-time payment of $200,000, or around 30 bitcoins as of press time.

Article Produced By
Helen Partz

Helen is passionate about learning languages, cultures and the Internet. She has years of experience working at international online advertising projects. Growing interested in Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies in late 2017, she joined Cointelegraph as a writer.

https://cointelegraph.com/news/malta-to-assist-the-government-of-vanuatu-in-forming-blockchain-and-ico-legislation

Ethereum is better than Bitcoin in 2018: ConsenSys Enterprise Ethereum Alliance ICO ‘s and smart contracts Ethereum Price Forecast

Ethereum is better than Bitcoin in 2018: ConsenSys, Enterprise Ethereum Alliance, ICO ’s and smart contracts (Ethereum Price Forecast) – Sat Oct 06

Ethereum is better than Bitcoin in 2018: ConsenSys,

Enterprise Ethereum Alliance, ICO ’s and smart contracts Ibtimes has published an article about the future of Ethereum. The Ethereum ecosystem is faring slightly better than bitcoin this week in terms of price. According to OnChainFX, ether tokens rose nine percent to roughly $1,101 on Wednesday morning. Ether prices grew 10,298 percent since this time last year. Organizations such as ConsenSys and the Enterprise Ethereum Alliance drove institutional engagement while the initial coin offerings fundraising trend created hundreds of new Ethereum-based tokens. CoinMarketCap estimates Ethereum’s global market cap now exceeds $107.5 billion.

Will the price of ether tokens continue to rise in February? It’s impossible to know for sure, of course. Regulators worldwide are cracking down on questionable ICOs, which could impact ether itself. “There is definitely demand for Ethereum when there are ICOs being launched,” Matthew Gertler, senior analyst at Digital Asset Research, told International Business Times. “But we don’t have numbers to quantify how much of these [ether tokens] went into ICO projects to know if that is really going to have any effect. Negative publicity is generally negative for the market.”

Ethereum’s ecosystem exhibited better variance

On the other hand, Ethereum creator Vitalik Buterin has an ambitious roadmap for technical improvements this year. Plus, an academic study out of Cornell University argued there even more diverse Ethereum network nodes than there are comparable bitcoin nodes. The study also asserted Ethereum’s ecosystem exhibited better variance when it comes to miners, making it easier for small miners to contribute. All things considered, the Ethereum community is diversifying rapidly. This could boost the network’s overall security.

Ethereum futures contracts could be in the pipeline for 2018

Much like the bitcoin network, relatively high transaction fees and network congestion hinder daily usage. Some experts speculate that Ethereum futures contracts, an unprecedented investment product with relation to this cryptocurrency, could be in the pipeline for 2018. If so, it could impact ether prices just as hype surrounding bitcoin futures influenced the broader cryptocurrency market in late 2017.

If you think the value is higher than the current price

“Bitcoin and Ethereum broadly trade in similar ways. One big difference, I would say, is you now have the bitcoin futures market,” Wall Street veteran and cryptocurrency investor Jill Carlson told IBT. “It’s always a question of the value of something versus the price of something. If you think the value is higher than the current price, that’s a great thing to go in and buy. If you think the value is lower than the current price, then you might want to short it…Personally, I’m not going to short bitcoin anytime soon.”

Price of ether will rise this month

Even if most experts predict the price of ether will rise this month, anything can happen in the world of cryptocurrency. Quartz reported hackers stole $400 million worth of ICO tokens so far, the majority of which were Ethereum-based. Many Ethereum wallets, such as Parity, appear to have serious vulnerabilities. Regulation, lawsuits and costly cyber attacks could all lead to unpredictable oscillation.

I would have thought that they were crazy

“I just got back from the Bitcoin Miami conference and Ethereum is worth close to a $1,000. When I went to the same conference the year before it was $8 to $12,” Gertler said. “If anyone had said to me at the time that the high would be a $1,000 or more, I would have thought that they were crazy. I’ve been incredibly surprised over the past year. So I don’t have a high price expectation [for ether]. In terms of a low [price], I don’t have a bottom either.”

Bitcoin Price Predictions 2018: How high can Bitcoin price go in 2018? Up to $1 million or down to $100? (In-Depth Analysis)

Bitcoin prices in 2018 have been marked by volatility which has made bitcoin price prediction in short-term a bit of a challenge, even for the experienced analysts. As at the time of writing, the price of Bitcoin took a dip from 10k to under 8k following news that search engine giants, Google will ban crypto-related ads. So far, 2018 has presented its own surprises though not a dramatic as the rollercoaster we say in 2017.

History generally has a way of repeating itself but bitcoin has a lot of history which makes it an equal challenge predicting which history will be repeated. It takes more than a study of past trends to get predictions spot-on this time and so we ended this article by highlighting certain area expert analysts were looking at.

Analysts, enthusiast, and industry figures have very diverging opinions and bitcoin price predictions for both long and short-term. Optimism is still high in many quarters—reports of a new survey among British financials suggest a wide majority will buy more coins in hope of price resurgence later this year. As we delve into who’s saying what and why, here’s a heads-up. Expect a lot more price fluctuations in the interim. It’s going to be a bumpy ride getting to wherever Bitcoin is headed by the year’s end.

Surely, Bitcoin is headed up – John McAfee

John McAfee, Bitcoin supporter and founder of the popular McAfee antivirus software, is being very positive about Bitcoin. He predicted that Bitcoin price will hit $1 million by 2020 following last year’s prediction of $7000 which was well surpassed. Bitcoin Price Prediction Tracker portal, Bircoin.top, did the maths and explain that Bitcoin needs to grow daily at 0.4840957034310259% per day.to meet McAfee’s prediction. Currently, Bitcoin is around $ 8,207 compared to $ 7,171. Cool right? However, to hit McAfee’s target, BTC would end the year just over $29k.

BTC has accelerated much faster than my model assumptions. I now predict Bitcoin at $1 million by the end of 2020. I will still eat my d**k if wrong” – John McAfee[/perfectpullquote] Apart from the economics behind the limited supply of Bitcoin, his prediction considered the factors like the increased adoption of Bitcoin and blockchain as well as a total cryptocurrency’s market cap around $162 billion which gives large room for growth.

Expect stability only after 10 years – Kristjan Dekleva (Hedge)

The Swiss-based financial expert will have us brace up for a decade of turbulence before any hope for a stable bitcoin. This he suggests will coincide with a general acceptance of Bitcoin even in hard-stance China. This though, not as a fiat replacement but a viable alternative. In my opinion, it will be at least 10 years before we see stability”. – Kristjan Dekleva (Hedge)[/perfectpullquote] The finance expert at cryptocurrency project Hedge sees Bitcoin investments as all-too-similar to the DotCom bubble of the 90s. So Mr. Dekleva, what are we having for supper in 2018? In the short-term, falls have been driven by emotion and in many cases disinformation – a small rumor can have a big impact…Demand is driven by market speculation, but the absence of institutional investors means the market is unstable. Instability it is. Next stop is the prestigious Harvard.

Bitcoin to shrink to $100 – Kenneth Rogoff (Harvard Prof & ex IMF chief)

Known for his disparaging remarks against Bitcoin, a former chief economist at the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) Kenneth Rogoff has poured icy water on hopes of Bitcoin making it to the moon. I think Bitcoin will be worth a tiny fraction of what it is now if we’re headed out 10 years from now…I would see $100 as being a lot more likely than $100,000.”  – Kenneth Rogoff[/perfectpullquote] Rogoff’s prediction is based on his long-held belief that governments will rise against anonymous virtual currencies like Bitcoin. Government regulations, according to Rogoff, will pop the Bitcoin bubble but a Bitcoin pioneer on Wall Street thinks along very different lines.

Bitcoin to reach $25k in 2018 – Tom Lee (Snr. partner Fundstrat; ex-chief JP Morgan)

Popular Bitcoin forecaster Tom Lee expects Bitcoin to reach $25,000 by mid-2018, more than double its price of about $10,000 in January when the prediction was originally made. We expect bitcoin’s major low to be $9,000, and we would be aggressive buyers around that level,”  – Tom Lee[/perfectpullquote] Though Bitcoin went below Lee’s base of $9,000 (nearing $6,000), it has bounced out reaching in March $11,000. It will take a ride similar to the one we witnessed last year for Bitcoin to reach this mark. To make this happen, Lee is counting on more institutional investors taking on Bitcoin and a steady increase in Bitcoin user base. Lee’s target may be half the mark according to fellow crypto-believer.

Volatile Bitcoin to touch $50,000 – Jeet Singh (cryptocurrency portfolio manager)

Speaking in January at the World Economic Forum in Davos, experienced cryptocurrency fund manager, Jeet Singh predicted that the price of Bitcoin will go as high as $50,000. He warned of heavy price fluctuations which he believes is only normal for a Bitcoin market that is still maturing. Bitcoin could definitely see $50,000 in 2018…We will probably go through a suffering period of volatility around the time of Bitcoin’s next $10,000 landmark.”  – Jeet Singh[/perfectpullquote] Just like Lee, Singh expects Bitcoin to be adopted not just in the black market but by institutions and entire countries. If 50k seems too optimistic, how about 100k from the “Nostradamus of Markets”?

Bitcoin is the future; Fiat is Past – (Tim Draper, Venture Capitalist)

In 2014 with bitcoin at only $413, popular VC, Tim Draper predicted bitcoin to reach $10,000 in three years. This was fulfilled a month earlier than he predicated earning him a reputation among crypto fans. Though he didn’t categorically, predict a $100k Bitcoin in 2018, He said he expected the Bitcoin to continue its growth in an interview with Bloomberg last year. Tim Draper has made successful bets with Tesla, Skype, and Twitter in the past. Assuming this growth happens at the same pace as the 3-year journey to $10k then we’re in for six digits. Maniacal right? That’s exactly how Draper feels about Bitcoin prospects. Now onto someone who understands a lot about bitcoin’s foundation.

Bitcoin will hit $ 40,000 – Llew Claasen (Executive Director, Bitcoin Foundation)

Last month, Llew Classen made a bold statement to reassure Bitcoin believers that the cryptocurrency is on the right track –specifically, on track to reach the $40,000 mark. Though his outlook for some altcoin holders was not very encouraging, he made it clear that as something new, cryptocurrency will be as risky as it is exciting.

Bitcoin to pass $43K by December 2018 – (Survey by Finder.com)

Finder.com sought opinions of 13 cryptocurrency experts and concluded that Bitcoin price will witness a 300% growth to land at $43,000 by the end of the year. The site also predicted Bitcoin at over $14K by March 1.While we saw the top 10 coins dive by 24 percent last month, our survey shows panelists are expecting this to be a bump in the road as these coins are set to recover.” – Jon Ostler, UK CEO, finder.com[/perfectpullquote] Ostler noted that the predictions were not cast in stone as they can easily be swayed by “outside factors such as regulations, laws, and banking systems”

Bitcoin Will hit $320,000 someday – Cameron Winklevoss
(co-founder, Gemini)

One of the popular Winkelvoss twins, Cameron Winklevoss recently said that he could easily see the price of BTC go up 40% someday. This year maybe? Not likely. The twin said he and his brother were taking longer outlook, 10 to 20 years. Bitcoin is actually fixed in supply so it’s better than scarce … it sort of equals a better gold across the board. We think regardless of the price moves in the last few weeks, it’s still a very underappreciated asset.” –  Winklevoss [/perfectpullquote] The fourth wealthiest cryptocurrency investor weighed bitcoin’s prospect against gold and came up with a resounding verdict. “We believe bitcoin disrupts gold,” He said.

Bitcoin will reach $1million – Bobby Lee (CEO BTCC Exchange)

Bobby Lee, CEO of China’s first Bitcoin exchange speaking at the London Blockchain Week went overboard with his prediction. Lee said bitcoin will surpass $1 million but unlike McAfee, he could see this happen in 20 years’ time.

[perfectpullquote align=”full” bordertop=”false” cite=”” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””]“Bitcoin, I think will get to $1 million per bitcoin…Right now it’s 10,000, it will go 100,000 and then 200,000, 500,000.”  – Bobby Lee[/perfectpullquote]

IN SUMMARY

A good number of analysts have also had their say though very few would be drawn into actual predictions. We observed a general trend in their assessments.

Expect Price Fluctuations:

At this stage, bitcoin and cryptocurrencies will be greatly affected by speculations. Even small developments in governments, traditional will likely affect prices. Most say the fluctuations are normal and wouldn’t affect the longer term outlook.

Long-term outlook

Experts would prefer to make predictions over a longer period. It is more common to have bitcoin price predictions for 2020 or a 10 to 20-year outlook. While the current reality may suggest some gloom, it’s worth remembering that the heights achieved last year came amidst similar corrections along the way. It’s only the 1st quarter of the year.

Bitcoin will be the standard for virtual currencies.

Though bitcoin may have a limited use case, it has been tipped to remain the king of all cryptocurrencies. It’s not going to be a case of “which altcoin will overtake bitcoin” rather how they will impress with their special use cases. It is a fact that the technology behind bitcoin is less sophisticated when compared to many other projects like ethereum.

Bitcoin as a store of value

Gradually, bitcoin is being seen more as a store of value that an actual currency being compared to gold and other assets. Bitcoin was originally designed as an alternative currency to bank the unbanked. Most decision making bodies and financial experts, however, see Bitcoin more as a store of value, an asset rather than a medium of transaction.

Many Altcoins will suffer

Part of the process that will lead to general acceptance of cryptocurrencies will include a clean-up of “useless” cryptocurrencies. A good number of the 2000 coins will naturally go away as their value become worthless—some, only a fraction of cent. Brad Garlinghouse, the CEO of Ripple and Llew Claasen of Bitcoin Foundation are among those raising this alarm.

Economics of Scarcity

The limited supply of bitcoin—a fixed supply 21 million BTCs—will play a role in its price; if not now, in the future.

Outside factors will play a significant role

Many observers believe that outside factors which affect the adoption of bitcoin will ultimately dictate the price in the short-term. The creation and performance of futures markets, for instance, is expected to tilt the price either way.

There are still concerns about bitcoins used for illicit purposes

Due to the anonymity of Bitcoin transactions, it has been used to conduct illegal activities giving Bitcoin a general bad image. This image, analysts believe will affect its adoption and ultimately its prospects in the future.

Finally, Caution against risking your life savings

 

Crypto investments are new and super-risky. Remember ethereum founder saying that cryptos are so risky the prizes might actually drop to zero. Well, that doesn’t seem practical but the message was clear. Do not invest your life savings in bitcoin or cryptocurrencies generally. Just like John Draper noted, you still need to buy stuff in fiat. So while bitcoin will likely worth a lot more in the future, it’s advisable to invest just as much as one can afford to lose.

Article Produced By
Andreas Kaplan

Andreas Kaplan is a freelance cryptocurrency and blockchain writer.

Regulation for Legitimacy: South Korea Nears ICO Legalization

Regulation for Legitimacy: South Korea Nears ICO Legalization


Min Byung-Doo, a member of the country’s governing Democratic party
 
and the chairman of Korea’s National Policy Committee, has strongly encouraged the government to legalize initial coin offering (ICO) and impose better crypto-related regulatory frameworks to legitimize the local market.“Regulation is not bad. Regulation is necessary, it is the only way to legitimize the market and allow investors to build trust towards the cryptocurrency market,” chairman Min said.

ICO Has Become a New Trend

In his statement at the National Assembly of South Korea meeting, chairman Min emphasized the importance of embracing new technologies and acknowledging new trends in the global finance and technology space. He explained that the successful $1.7 billion ICO of Telegram and $4 billion token sale of Block.One / EOS have demonstrated increasing interest and demand for ICO projects, which the country cannot dismiss.

“The government cannot dismiss ICO. It needs to allow companies to conduct ICO. ICO has become a new trend in the global market and it is the responsibility and ability of the government to embrace new technologies,” he said, adding “We can see that the flow of investment is clearly changing compared to ICO and angel fundraising. The ICO has raised $1.7 billion for Telegram and $4 billion for Block.One, It is getting bigger and bigger.”

Previously, Choi Jong-ku, the chairman of the Financial Services Commission (FSC), prevented Kakao, the biggest Internet conglomerate in South Korea that has over 80 percent market share over local fintech, messaging, ride hailing, social media, and online stock trading industries, from conducting an ICO in South Korea. As the conglomerate established a company in Switzerland to conduct an ICO overseas, FSC chairman Choi stated that the country could consider the ICO to be an illicit fund raising method.

“Even if there is no prohibition on cryptocurrency or digital asset trading, there is a possibility that it [Kakao ICO] may be regarded as fraud or multi-level sales according to the issuance method. Since the risk is very high in terms of investor protection, the government has a negative stance on the ICO,” chairman Ku said. Ultimately, Kakao and Bithumb, the second biggest cryptocurrency exchange in South Korea, scrapped their plans to conduct token sales.

Based on the success of Telegram and EOS, the ICO of Kakao could have garnered similar interest from the global cryptocurrency sector. Considering the potential of the ICO market and local blockchain initiatives, chairman Min asserted that the government should regulate and legalize ICOs in the short-term. “Let the government, the National Assembly and the blockchain association quickly create a working group to block fraud, speculation, money laundering and develop the block-chain industry,” he said.

Legislation Pending, Generally Positive

Currently, the National Assembly is awaiting to approve or reject the first crypto and blockchain-related legislation of South Korea, which if approved would consider digital asset exchanges as regulated banks and blockchain projects as legitimate entities. The initial introduction of the legislation led the majority of investors within the local market to be optimistic about the long-term growth of the market. With the forward-thinking approach of chairman Min, South Korea is expected to see major changes in local regulatory frameworks surrounding the cryptocurrency market.

Article Produced By
Blockchain News

https://www.ccn.com/regulation-for-legitimacy-south-korea-nears-ico-legalization/

South Korea’s Democratic Party Lawmaker Urges Authorities to Open Up the Road’ to ICOs

South Korea’s Democratic Party Lawmaker Urges Authorities to ‘Open Up the Road’ to ICOs

A member of South Korea’s National Assembly has called

on the state to “open up the road” to Initial Coin Offerings (ICO) by easing regulations, South Korean financial outlet Economy reports October 2. According to the article, Min Byung-doo, a Democratic Party lawmaker, will introduce a project of for ICO legislation at the next round of the National Assembly. He claimed that the purpose of the new legislation is to allow ICOs while enforcing strict regulation for the negative parts of the industry,

noting:

"We are looking at ways to open up the road to ICO[s] while strictly prohibiting negative factors such as fraud, speculation and money laundering.”

Min Byung-doo has reportedly also suggested to local authorities such as the Financial Services Commission (FSC) that the government should legalize ICO operations in the country, claiming that “prohibition is not the only way.” According to Economy, after consulting with the government and the FSC, the authorities’ stance has “changed prospectively compared with the past.” Calling on the government to ease regulations for the industry, Min Byung-doo noted that the ban on ICO causes "weakening competitiveness" in South Korea’s blockchain industry, comparing it with the levels in the progress by the U.S.,

adding:

"[South Korea's] blockchain-related industries were at the top of the world in terms of competitiveness, but the competitiveness in ICOs has dropped sharply. Now, 75% of projects in the industry belong to the United States only, which is the world's top competitor."

The lawmaker warned that an uncertain future of regulation for the industry will “prevent the growth of the industry itself.” South Korea’s financial regulator, the FSC, announced they will ban all types of ICOs in September 2017, claiming that ICO token sales require strict monitoring and oversight. The original ban has since been followed by subsequent hints of a possible reverse of the ban.

In May of this year, South Korea’s government considered re-legalizing ICOs, with a National Assembly committee speaking of the “Fourth Industrial Revolution” and aiming to expand the legal basis for crypto industry in the country, including a reversal of the ICO ban. South Korea’s lawmakers most recently discussed the ICO ban at the end of August, debating the ban’s reversal as well as considering setting up the country’s own “blockchain island.” According to the report, discussions of a reversal were expected to gain momentum amid the preparation of investor protection rules, as well as the formation of a task force to oversee crypto trading.

Article Produced By
Helen Partz

Helen is passionate about learning languages, cultures and the Internet. She has years of experience working at international online advertising projects. Growing interested in Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies in late 2017, she joined Cointelegraph as a writer.

https://cointelegraph.com/news/bloomberg-puerto-ricos-noble-bank-reportedly-loses-clients-tether-bitfinex-seeks-buyer

ThorBlock Pools Will Allow Anyone To Invest in ICOs on VeChainThor

ThorBlock Pools Will Allow Anyone To Invest in ICOs on VeChainThor

Safe Haven has announced a new project called ThorBlock,

described as a platform that will allow users to pool funds on the VeChainThor blockchain. The project will allow individual investors to participate in crypto-related activities that would normally be out of their price range, including ICOs.

The platform requires pool administrators to start a community pool by locking down their own SafeHaven tokens (SHA). Other users can then contribute to the community pool, which will be used to raise funds for group investments. Once the pool matures, the administrator will gain access to the deposited funds. They can then invest in the project that the pool has agreed to fund. After that, the rewards will be divided between the contributors.

ICO Investing

ThorBlock will enable individuals to participate in ICOs and token sales, even when regulations and investment limits restrict them from doing so. Many ICOs are too expensive for individual investors and are only open to accredited investors. Additionally, ICOs are generally off-limits to residents of the U.S., China, and many other countries. But with ThorBlock, a pool operator who qualifies as an ICO investor can invest in the token sale on behalf of the community pool. After the ICO is complete, the earnings can be redistributed to the pool members.

Staking Nodes

Update: According to VeChain Insider, “Although the [ThorBlock] pool wallet could potentially be used to create a new node (not an X-Node), this is not recommended, since it is not possible to distribute the generated VTHO between pool contributors. Safe Haven is currently working on a dedicated solution for node pooling called TrustNode.”

Previous Pools

Although ThorBlock may be the first platform of its type, crypto investors have been arranging pools for some time. One blogger notes that many pool administrators currently use Telegram to coordinate investors who want to fund a particular ICO. However, ThorBlock’s features may allow pool administrators to more effectively manage their contributors. The platform will allow administrators to whitelist users so that only trusted contributors can participate.

The platform will also allow users to put more trust in pool operators: administrators cannot withdraw funds early, and users can revoke their funds if they have second thoughts. Admittedly, many investment pools currently use smart contracts to control funds — these are known as trustless pools. However, ThorBlock will provide an all-in-one platform designed specifically for this purpose. The project will launch in early October.

Article Produced By

Mike Dalton

https://unhashed.com/cryptocurrency-news/thorblock-pools-allow-anyone-invest-icos-vechainthor/

Congressional Crypto Roundtable: Panel Discusses Token Classification and Compliance for ICOs

Congressional Crypto Roundtable:
Panel Discusses Token Classification and Compliance for ICOs

More than 45 representatives from major Wall Street

firms and crypto companies took part in a meeting to discuss Initial Coin Offering (ICO) and cryptocurrency regulations in Washington D.C. September 25. The “crypto roundtable,” hosted by Congressman Warren Davidson in the last legislative session week before elections, gave a chance for industry representatives to express their concerns regarding possible regulations of the crypto space. Namely, experts told lawmakers that there is a pronounced lack of regulatory clarity for ICOs and digital currencies.

Roundtable participants discussed “token taxonomy,” aiming to describe the existing uncertainty around the definition of ICO tokens, as well as the implied regulatory framework. Experts suggested principles for regulatory compliance and consumer protection, aiming to outline major regulatory approaches that should be implemented in line with the evolving technology. Addressing the first and main point of the discussion, Marvin Ammori, General counsel at Protocol Labs, stressed a whole “cascade of uncertainty,” associated with existing token classification.

Ammori cited the issues faced by the decentralized file storage project Filecoin (FIL), claiming that at the time the company was was launched in 2017, they thought that the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) would consider it a security. Chia Network president Ryan Singer joined the discussion, pointing out the “Ethereum question” that was raised recently when the SEC stated that the major altcoin would be not regulated as a security, but rather as a commodity.

Singer agreed with Ammori, emphasizing that the main problem of the industry is the absence of clarity, as well as no basic definition of what is “decentralized enough,” or what is “functional enough.” Hilary Kivitz, COO and General Counsel at Andreessen Horowitz Crypto, suggested that tokens operating within a fundraising phase should be considered securities. Kivitz also suggested a definition for general tokens, stressing that tokens’ incentive should “align the interests of all the participants” of

the ICO network:

“Tokens [are] an asset that facilitate a shared incentive network, where every participant derives value from the growth of the network.”

Other participants argued that current regulations were not only vague, but outdated. Joshua Stein, CEO at crypto-security firm Harbor, stated that securities regulations “do not work” in regard to utility tokens in decentralized apps (DApps). Stein concluded that current securities laws are only appropriate for traditional securities, and “they are not good fit” for

the ICO industry:

“Everytime I want to use decentralized Microsoft Word, or I want to store files like with Filecoin, imagine every time you use Dropbox, you have to contact a broker dealer, go through a KYC (Know Your Customer) process, perhaps be accredited by your Dropbox subscription on a licensed exchange, and then go through a whole bunch of reporting requirements, it just doesn’t work.”

Kate Prochaska of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce said that three things need to be done so that the crypto industry “doesn’t go abroad as well.”  Prochaska named regulatory coordination, clear definitions, and engaging with regulators to seek “no action” letters.

Article Produced By
Helen Partz

Helen is passionate about learning languages, cultures and the Internet. She has years of experience working at international online advertising projects. Growing interested in Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies in late 2017, she joined Cointelegraph as a writer.

https://cointelegraph.com/news/south-korean-government-to-exclude-sale-brokerage-of-digital-assets-from-venture-business

Wallet Provider Blockchain Sues Crypto Startup Days Before ICO

Luxembourg-based cryptocurrency wallet provider Blockchain

has filed a lawsuit against a startup with a similar name, the company announced Thursday. Blockchain – formerly known as Blockchain.info – is suing Blockchain.io just days in advance of the latter's initial coin offering (ICO) over concerns that investors may believe they are buying tokens distributed by the wallet distributor, according to a public court filing.

Specifically, the suit names Paymium SAS, the company behind Blockchain.io, and founder Pierre Noizat, as defendants, claiming that Paymium has participated in "bad acts," including the operation of the now-defunct crypto wallet Instawallet. A representative for Blockchain told CoinDesk that the move came as a result of investors confusing the two firms,

adding:

"As we allege in our complaint, blockchain.io is using our brand to cover up a history of hacking and theft of user funds. Worse, they are raising money in a dubious ICO they claim is 'registered with the [U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission].' There is of course no registration statement in place. Given the current climate of SEC enforcement and scam ICOs, when users and investors alerted us to this confusion, we needed to step up and take action before any further harm was done."

Among the suit's arguments is the claim that Blockchain.io's logo is similar to Blockchain's, which infringes its design marks (both logos are pictured above). The complaint specifically states that "Blockchain does not claim exclusive rights to the word 'blockchain' to describe the technology underlying cryptocurrencies …Rather, it claims exclusive rights in the BLOCKCHAIN marks, which it has been using exclusively for its Blockchain Products and which have become well and favorably known to consumers throughout the United States and the world as identifying its highly regarded and secure services."

It goes on to note that "in 2018, after years of doing business under different trademarks, Paymium adopted the mark BLOCKCHAIN.IO in a blatant and bad faith attempt to capitalize on the valuable and trusted BLOCKCHAIN marks and to confuse consumers into believing Paymium's inferior services emanate from or are otherwise associated with Blockchain."

"Paymium's digital currency services are identical or nearly identical to Blockchain's Digital Wallet Services, Mobile App Services and Website Services, which allow consumers to exchange one form of digital currency for another, such as bitcoin for ether or bitcoin cash," the suit continued. However, Blockchain.io has denied the claim, with founder Pierre Noizat telling CoinDesk that "we find it strange that Blockchain Luxembourg filed a claim just [six] days before our public token sale when they had [six] years to contact us regarding our domain name if they had issues with it."

Indeed, whois information confirms that the domain "blockchain.io" was first registered in April 2012 by Paymium. Public records with the National Institute of Industrial Property, the French patent office, also show that blockchain.io was registered as a brand in 2017. However, it is unclear if there was any activity under the domain prior to 2018. The Wayback Machine does have a snapshot from 2017, indicating the domain may have simply redirected to Paymium's website at the time.

And while ICOs cannot "register with the SEC," companies offering securities sales can declare their intent to do so. Public records indicate that Paymium filed a "Form D" for the sale of "digital tokens" in June 2018, announcing the company's intent to sell tokens in the future. CoinDesk was unable to confirm that Blockchain.io had registered with the Autorité de Contrôle Prudentiel et de Résolution, or the French bank and insurance company monitor, as the firm claimed in its pitch deck.

Lawyers weigh in

The lawsuit has failed to impress at least some lawyers who work in the space. Stephen Palley, an attorney with corporate law firm Anderson Kill P.C., told CoinDesk that "it's an odd argument to make in a trademark infringement action." His colleague, Dan Healy, explained further, saying that "BLOCKCHAIN" is a generic term.

"Generic terms are not generally trademarks because they do not identify [a] source. They generically refer to a thing or service. It looks like the plaintiff is trying to show that it is using its design mark as a source identifier for digital wallet services, as something not generic to blockchain, even though they are wallets for holding blockchain currency," he explained. Palley expanded on that idea, noting that "in fact, they had to disclaim any such protection, the lawsuit even says as much."

He added:

"Their use of the word blockchain isn't really protected under U.S. Trademark law … Perhaps because they couldn't get protection for the word, they filed a "design mark" – "blockchain" in all capital letters with a picture next to it. And even though they don't have trademark protection for the word, it appears that they are in effect by this lawsuit trying to use their design mark to prevent blockchain.io from using the word blockchain."

"We think that's a weak argument," he concluded.

Healy noted that Blockchain disclaimed the term, saying "no claim is made to the exclusive right to use BLOCKCHAIN apart from the mark as shown." "That means the plaintiff has a design mark and disclaimed the exclusive right to use the term BLOCKCHAIN, but appears to be trying to enforce its mark to preclude other from using the term BLOCKCHAIN," he said.

Article Produced By
Nikhilesh De

https://www.coindesk.com/wallet-provider-blockchain-sues-crypto-startup-days-before-ico/

Blockchain files a complaint against a cryptocurrency exchange launching ICO next week

Blockchain files a complaint against a cryptocurrency exchange, launching ICO next week

Blockchain, a cryptocurrency company,

announced on their official Twitter that they have filed a complaint against Blockchaindotio, a cryptocurrency exchange, for using their name and promoting false information to users. According to the blog report, Blockchaindotio is a cryptocurrency launched by Paymuim, a company which focuses on providing services for Bitcoin. However, it is stated that the company which was popular for running Instawallet is rebranding itself since they lost their customers funds to a hack.

In the year of 2013, Paymuim claimed that Instawallet was compromised due to a hack and that the customers’ coins were stolen from the platform. The platform also stated that they have filed a complaint with the police. This falls in the same timeframe as that of Mt. Gox hack, the biggest cryptocurrency hack in the space.

However, the announcement of the hack eventually resulted in many stating that the platform was running a scam and are falsely claiming that they were hacked. This is because the platform failed to show any evidence related to the police report despite the community asking for it several times. Reportedly, the company has not completely paid off the claims made by their customers.

Blockchain claims that the platform is rebranding itself in order to conceal the allegations of scam. The blog further stated the company is falsely claiming that they have registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission [SEC] for their Initial Coin Offering [ICO]. The ICO is going to be launched in next week on 27th September 2018. This would result in the investors being unable to trade the token publicly. Moreover, the report also stated that there is no evidence regarding the ICO being regulated by the French ACPR.

Blockchain stated that they are particularly concerned about the company has rebranded to a name which is similar to theirs and that it has already led to a lot of confusion in the market. They stated that the similarities which both the companies share include the domain name, the color of the portal, logo, and the tagline. Blockchain further stated that there have been several people questing them about the ICO.

Blockchain said:

“Blockchain is not doing an ICO. When we inspected blockchain.io’s social media and Telegram channels, we discovered that many more people had assumed that blockchain.io was Blockchain.”

They further added:

“To protect our users and maintain the trust we’ve worked so hard to build, we’ve had to take action. Today we filed a complaint in US federal court. We’ll file more complaints in other courts if we need to and we will continue to fight false and misleading statements that endanger the crypto community.”

Article Produced By
Priya

Priya is a full-time member of the reporting team at AMBCrypto. She is a finance major with one year of writing experience. She has not held any value in Bitcoin or other currencies.

https://ambcrypto.com/blockchain-files-a-complaint-against-a-cryptocurrency-exchange-launching-ico-next-week/

SEC Director Vows More Substantial’ Enforcement Against Illegal ICOs

SEC Director Vows ‘More Substantial’ Enforcement Against Illegal ICOs


U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC)
 
co-director of enforcement Stephanie Avakian mentioned in a Sept. 20 speech that the regulatory agency is most likely going to recommend “more substantial remedies” against those who fail to follow proper initial coin offering (ICO) registration requirements in the future

According to a transcript of the speech posted on the SEC’s website, Avakian articulated the specific set of principals that guide the agency’s decision-making when it comes to regulation, and then delved into how the SEC was tackling in “misconduct” in the ICO and virtual asset space.

Balancing The Risks and Rewards of ICOs

In the speech, Avarkian mentioned that the “novelty of ICOs” and the possible “utility of the underlying blockchain” makes these types of offerings exciting for certain investors. However, she noted  the market “exuberance” for ICOs can mask the reality that they are “often high-risk investments,” since they could lack viable products, have flawed business models, or just simply be “outright frauds.” According to Avarkian, the SEC has tried to be cognizant about how to deal with ICOs registration cases that are not fraudulent. The agency wants to affirm valid ways to raise money while still making sure investors can enjoy the legal protections already in place.

She noted that the agency has issued a number of public statements to inform investors about concerning activity in the ICO space, particularity highlighting one last November that discussed the rise in ICO promotion by celebrities and other public figures. Avarkian said the “anecdotal evidence” in the wake of the announcement pointed to a “dramatic decline” in the amount of celebrity-endorsed ICOs. Overall, Avarkian said any issues related to ICOs and cryptoassets must be in the crosshairs of the Division of Enforcement, and pointed out that current work related to the space and other cyber-related issues was already “paying dividends.”

Staying Active On The Cryptocurrency Front

The recent speech by Stephanie Avakian seemingly caps off what has been a busy week for the SEC when it comes to virtual currency. The regulatory agency also said on Thursday that they are starting a formal review process for the bitcoin ETF proposed by VanEck and SolidX. The proposed ETF has made headlines since it would hold actual vitcoin in lieu of virtual currency futures contracts, and would maintain “comprehensive insurance” to safeguard investors against loss or theft of the bitcoin.

Just a couple of days before, SEC Commissioner Hester Peirce, often referred to as “CryptoMom,” asserted that the government should not hold back new products from coming out in the cryptocurrency market due to the perceived weaknesses associated with bitcoin.

Article Produced By
ICO News

https://www.ccn.com/sec-director-vows-more-substantial-enforcement-against-illegal-icos/