Op Ed: Launching an ICO? Follow This Advice from the SEC

Op Ed: Launching an ICO? Follow This Advice from the SEC

Lost in the headlines over the SEC’s recent pronouncements on cryptocurrency was important practical advice for both promoters of and participants in initial coin offerings (ICOs).

Most coverage was rightfully garnered from the Report by the SEC’s enforcement division which deemed that DAO Tokens are securities, after subjecting the offering to the Howey test. However, the simultaneously issued Investor Bulletin should also be closely read by issuers of ICOs and their counsel.

Advice for Issuers and Counsel

Even though the bulletin was prepared as a cautionary statement to investors, it contains at least one disclaimer (in boldface type) that attorneys advising ICOs should add the following language to any offering document or white paper:

Investing in an ICO may limit your recovery in the event of fraud or theft. While you may have rights under the federal securities laws, your ability to recover may be significantly limited.

We have previously discussed the importance of these disclaimers and risk factors. By discussing the vulnerabilities of cryptocurrency exchanges and the potential difficulties associated with any recovery of invested or stolen funds, the SEC signals at least some of the risk factors counsel should consider adding to ICO offering materials.  

In fact, prudent attorneys advising their ICO clients would be wise to employ the cut-and-paste function, adding the above caveat to all their documents.

This additional wording is significant in that it spells out three key characteristics of ICOs:

(i) the difficulty of tracing or securing virtual currency;

(ii) the international scope of ICOs; and

(iii) the fact that lack of any central authority may limit an investor’s remedies against an issuer.

Practical Advice for Investors

Besides the usual bromides about being wary of any offer that sounds “too good to be true,” the SEC demonstrated an appreciation for the unique due diligence required in carefully evaluating an ICO.

According to the bulletin, investors should “ask whether the blockchain is open and public, whether the code has been published, and whether there has been an independent cybersecurity audit.” The SEC is communicating that those factors are indicative of companies whose products are verifiably real and secure.

Given the importance the SEC placed on these three items, rather than await questions, such points should be clearly addressed by an issuer in its ICO materials distributed to potential investors. Issuers of ICOs should include those factors and other “good facts” that can help to demonstrate their product’s value, security and legitimacy.

While the recent flurry of documents emanating from the SEC likely has given issuers of ICOs and their counsel pause (and caused them to walk each token through the Howey test), it does not appear to have stifled these transactions.

However, where the report reiterates the conceptual framework under which any potential token offering be evaluated to determine whether it constitutes a securities offering, the bulletin provides practical advice, and investors should expect to see some of the SEC’s language repeated in ICO offering documents going forward.

This is a guest post by Gray Sasser and Joshua Rosenblatt. The views expressed do not necessarily reflect those of Bitcoin Magazine or BTC Media.

The post Op Ed: Launching an ICO? Follow This Advice from the SEC appeared first on Bitcoin Magazine.

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Bloq Outlines Blockchain Solutions for Trade Finance and Supply Chain Management

Bloq Outlines Blockchain Solutions for Trade Finance and Supply Chain Management

Bloq, a Chicago-based blockchain developer and software startup, is now developing blockchain platforms and best practices for one of the most promising use cases for blockchain technology: trade finance and supply chain management.

Interest in the use of blockchain for trade is growing rapidly as companies and organizations like IBM, Microsoft, Hyperledger, JP Morgan and Walmart recognize that antiquated trade systems are long overdue for a complete restructuring and that blockchain technology has the potential to revolutionize the systems that make up global trade.

A common problem with current trade systems is fraud. The trip from farm or factory to store shelves involves numerous opportunities to falsify shipping documents and alter shipping container records or contents with little accountability.

“Global supply chain management has drastically changed in the last 10-15 years,” William Nieusma, Vice President, Government Strategy at Bloq told Bitcoin Magazine: “Regulatory mandates, operational complexity and data security concerns have ramped up the pressure to overhaul these outdated systems.”

Nieusma is one of the authors of Bloq’s recently released white paper, “Accelerating Global Trade Processes with Blockchain,” designed to introduce their new project to develop a model blockchain network for companies involved in trade.

“But it’s not all doom-and-gloom; adopters of blockchain-based systems can cut costs, improve customer service and find new, verified business partners,” added Nieusma.

Alan Cohn, attorney and consultant and advisor to Bloq told us:

“Global trade is an area where blockchain can play a transformative role, not just for industry but also for government.”

Nieusma noted that Bloq believes that in the future, the most significant and valuable business systems, including trade, will run on blockchains.

IBM has recognized the potential of blockchain and trade. In partnership with seven European banks, it is building a pilot blockchain trade program with Hyperledger to enable companies like Walmart and Maersk to use blockchain technology to better track the movement of farm and factory products to the store shelves.

Microsoft is also building a model trade program using the Ethereum blockchain in a pilot project with JPMorgan.

Blockchain Tech and Trade Are a Perfect Fit

Trade finance and supply management lend themselves well to the particular advantages of blockchain technology. The Bloq white paper states:

Blockchain technology holds considerable promise to substantially improve supply chain security and transparency. Blockchain’s inherent architectural attributes solve several weaknesses in current trade IT systems and processes to ensure information immutability and transaction auditing, thereby increasing trade value capture and value creation.

Bloq’s model trade platform promises companies high levels of cybersecurity, reduced waiting times, transparency, ease of revenue payments, low infrastructure investment, easily auditable transactions, efficient accommodation for additional participants, immutability and automatic bonding and payments through smart contracts.

Bloq plans to build a “permissioned, federated network” built on the Bitcoin blockchain that, depending on the client’s needs, will also support Ethereum and Hyperledger. Nieusma said:

“Bloq believes that the future is a multi-chain, multi-network world and that interoperability is a guiding principle in network buildout.”

The Bloq program will connect all parties involved in a trade including buyers, banks, sellers and transporters so that information about a shipment is distributed among all involved parties at the same time.

As the white paper states:

“Trade can be safer, more secure, and more profitable with less human error. We hope this discussion leads to an evolution in trade that benefits all stakeholders.”

The post Bloq Outlines Blockchain Solutions for Trade Finance and Supply Chain Management appeared first on Bitcoin Magazine.

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Blockstack Summit Tackles the Future of Decentralization

blockstack summit.jpg

Following a week of bombshell developments in the industry, from the SEC classifying the DAO Tokens as securities to the arrest of Alexander Vinnik for allegedly laundering 4 billion dollars through BTC-E, the inaugural Blockstack Summit kicked off on the morning of July 27th with an eye toward innovative layered protocols that can exist on top of existing blockchains.

Hosted at the Computer Science Museum in Mountain View, CA, the conference began with a discussion of transitions between the “terminal model” of computing and the personal computer over the course of digital history. In their talk, Blockstack co-founders Muneeb Ali and Ryan Shea discussed how recent moves toward cloud computing and storage take away the data privacy and security guarantees long afforded by personal computing. In response to this problem, Blockstack and other decentralized applications built on top of various blockchains aim to give consumers the ability to control, manage and streamline their own digital lives.

Elizabeth Stark, co-founder and CEO of Lightning Network, then discussed recent technical developments that allow for both higher transaction volumes through specialized off-chain payment channels and transactions between two different types of cryptocurrencies. These developments are saving both parties transaction fees in the long run and helping alleviate some of the scaling issues that bitcoin and other currencies have been facing in recent years.

Learn more about Lightning Networks in our three-part series, Understanding the Lightning Network.

Bram Cohen, BitTorrent creator, took the stage later with Blockstack’s Ali to discuss developments in the space. When asked about the scaling debate and recent implementation of SegWit, Cohen drew chuckles from the crowd with an adamant declaration that “SegWit solved a bug that should have been solved when Bitcoin was created.”

Cohen also endorsed Bitcoin Core and shared his doubts regarding the technical competency of the teams behind some of the more recent ICOs of ERC20 tokens built on top of the Ethereum blockchain: “As a general rule, if you don’t have the skills to build your own token from scratch, you shouldn’t run an ICO.”

Nick Szabo, computer scientist and legal scholar, then discussed the origins of contract law, the historical implementation of smart contracts and the next steps the industry needs to take to implement smart contracts in a variety of commercial transactions, both between consumers and companies and between companies themselves.

Drawing on his studies at George Washington University Law School, Szabo advocated for the integration of smart contracts into traditional contract and property law frameworks. Instead of attempting to rebuild legal theory from scratch, developers should work with existing frameworks that have already been debugged for centuries.

Szabo explained a dichotomy of contract law: “dry code,” where an entire agreement can be interpreted and executed by computers based on a number of digital inputs; and “wet code,” or traditional law, where the agreements are interpreted by individual parties based on their own definitions of words and phrasing.

Many industries exist today to help quantify and define examples of “wet code” in the world. Insurance claim adjusters analyze accident reports and eyewitness testimony in order to correctly pay out claims based on fault and the monetary value of the actual damages suffered by each party, for example.

Translating poorly organized data from real-world situations into a series of executable actions based on the terms of an agreement is a valuable service. Rather than call for an abolishment of these systems, Szabo argued that the future of decentralized smart contracts will exist in tandem with the best parts of more traditional finance industries in the coming future. Over the coming years, larger portions of traditional data analysis will become obsolete, performed digitally by more powerful and intelligent computers.

This is not the first time Szabo has spoken on the subject: As early as 2008, Szabo broke down the differences between wet and dry code on his blog, Unenumerated.

Next, Balaji Srinivasan, founder of 21.co and a16z Board Partner, introduced the Nakamoto coefficient, a metric inspired by the Lorenz curve and Gini coefficient to quantify the relative decentralization of different types of cryptocurrencies. By looking at the distribution of power in six subsects of individual cryptocurrencies, Srinivasan was able to compare the relative strengths of different blockchains and networks against attacks that require a majority or supermajority of the power in a system to be compromised.

Srinivasan started by organizing the six essential subsystems of both Bitcoin and Ethereum:

  • mining, where power is equal to who receives mining rewards;

  • clients, where power is equal to the number of users;

  • developers, where power is relatively equal to the number of commits;

  • exchanges, where power is equal to trading volume;

  • nodes, where power is measured by the distribution of nodes around the world; and

  • coin ownership, where power is measured by how much coin each wallet address contains.

After calculating the amount of power owned by each entity in the six subsystems, Srinivasan was able to calculate a Gini coefficient (dubbed the “Nakamoto coefficient”) based on the relative power concentrations for each subsystem. For instance, if every miner has the same amount of hashpower and receives the same reward, the subsystem would receive a value of 0. If a single miner receives all of the rewards, then the subsystem would receive a value of 1.

Screen_Shot_2017-07-28_at_11.52.35_PM.pngSrinivasan’s Nakamoto coefficient calculations for Bitcoin and Ethereum

Despite a myriad of differences, both Bitcoin and Ethereum have nearly identical Nakamoto coefficients of ≈0.91, indicating that at least one subsystem in each ecosystem is highly centralized. However, based on Srinivasan’s calculations, it’s clear that Bitcoin is either slightly (client, exchanges, nodes and owners) or drastically (mining and developers) more decentralized than Ethereum. Most surprisingly, Bitcoin’s mining network is far more decentralized than Ethereum’s (0.4 vs. 0.82).

This is the first time Srinivasan has discussed a metric for decentralization of cryptocurrency markets. He has since published his findings, with links to the underlying datasets, on his company’s blog.

After a panel discussing specific use cases for cryptocurrency payments, Wealth and Poverty author George Gilder led a rousing endorsement of a tokenized, decentralized web and its ability to destroy “silos” of the internet created both by countries and companies alike.

Citing the vast amounts of data companies like Facebook, Google and Amazon save and measure about their users’ digital lives, Gilder spoke of a future where individuals can explicitly control the flow of their data, secured by decentralized protocols and powered by tokens.

It was fitting that Blockstack Summit was held in the Computer History Museum, an ode to the stories and artifacts of the information age and its impact on society. With fully restored IBM mainframes, an Apple I and the source codes of dozens of impactful softwares like MS-DOS, Photoshop and Word, the museum served as a backdrop for discussions that look to an open, free and uncensored society of the future.

The post Blockstack Summit Tackles the Future of Decentralization appeared first on Bitcoin Magazine.

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PR: Top Blockchain Companies AlphaPoint, Bloq and RSK Labs Show Support for Exchange Union

Top Blockchain Companies AlphaPoint, Bloq and RSK Labs Show Support for Exchange Union

This is a paid press release, which contains forward looking statements, and should be treated as advertising or promotional material. Bitcoin.com does not endorse nor support this product/service. Bitcoin.com is not responsible for or liable for any content, accuracy or quality within the press release.

July 31th, Shanghai, China – Exchange Union has attracted the support of high profile blockchain companies AlphaPoint, Bloq and RSK Labs ahead of its crowd sale on Aug 7. Exchange Union aims to bridge digital currency exchanges via XUC, an inter-exchange token that allows secure cross-platform trading.

Exchange Union has appeal for blockchain technology companies, particularly those specialized in use cases and infrastructure. AlphaPoint is one such company that provides asset digitization through its distributed ledger platform. With a growing following of clients from around the world, AlphaPoint president and COO Igor Telatnikov was clear on the benefits that Exchange Union can bring;

“Exchange Union will bridge digital currency exchanges by breaking the barriers of separation among them, thus raising the liquidity of digital asset markets. This will be of great benefit to the industry. We believe Exchange Union will lead the trend for settlement on blockchain.”

Exchange Union has also been favoured by RSK Labs. As a distributed platform of smart contracts on Bitcoin Blockchain, RSK Labs has developed an extensive fan-based Bitcoin and blockchain community and is widely regarded as one of the best solutions to the Bitcoin scale debate. Gabriel Kurman is co-founder of RSK Labs and sees value in Exchange Union commenting,

‘Exchange Union can play a key role connecting exchanges across the world and enabling the full potential of the internet of value. RSK technologies, such as the Lumino network, will allow Exchange Union members to trade up to 20,000 transactions per second of any kind of digital asset. We will pay close attention to this promising project and support its development.’

Exchange Union has also caught the attention of Bloq that is widely recognised in the industry as a leading provider of enterprise level blockchain technology offering software solutions, business consultation and blockchain application support. Jeff Garzik is the co-founder of Bloq, a member of Bitcoin Core, a very experienced developer and also a “Linux lieutenant” maintainer working directly under Linus Torvalds, creator of Linux, for over 10 years.

Garzik recognizes the Exchange Union project objectives such as its ability to bridge global digital currency exchanges and the benefit of fast, secure and convenient transactions on the Exchange Union Chain, and added that he will support the development of the project.

Exchange Union token sale will go live at 09:00 EST on August 7th 2017. The token sale is being held via the largest token sale platform Token Market. For more information, visit www.exchangeunion.net or contact us at [email protected].

We are looking forward to your support!

Press Contact Email Address
[email protected]
Supporting Link

This is a paid press release. Readers should do their own due diligence before taking any actions related to the promoted company or any of its affiliates or services. Bitcoin.com is not responsible, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on any content, goods or services mentioned in the press release.

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Bitcoin Exchange Sued for 3085 Bitcoins After Reversing Bitcoin-Ether Trades

Bitcoin Exchange Sued for 3085 Bitcoins After Reversing Bitcoin-Ether Trades

A major bitcoin exchange with a strong presence in Japan, Quoine, is being sued for reversing bitcoin-ether trades after it allegedly suffered from a system glitch. Cryptocurrency trades on the platform are supposed to be irreversible, so the plaintiff claims Quoine acted fraudulently and seeks the return of 3,085 bitcoins.

Also read: Indian Bitcoin Exchanges Will Not Support Bitcoin Cash

Quoine Sued for Reversing Trades

Bitcoin Exchange Sued for 3085 Bitcoins After Reversing Bitcoin-Ether TradesOne of Asia’s largest bitcoin exchanges, the Singapore-based Quoine, is reportedly being sued over the reversal of bitcoin-ether trades. This lawsuit is the country’s first bitcoin-specific legal dispute, according to The Straits Times on Monday.

The plaintiff is a market marker known as B2C2, who placed sell orders on Quoine’s platform at the rate of 10 bitcoins for one ETH on April 19, when the market price of one Bitcoin Exchange Sued for 3085 Bitcoins After Reversing Bitcoin-Ether TradesETH was about 0.04 bitcoin. The orders were filled and credited on the same day; B2C2 paid 309.2518 ETH and received 3092.517116 bitcoins. However, the next day Quoine reversed the trades and deducted 3084.78582325 bitcoins from the market maker’s account without authorization, the news outlet detailed.

The trades were “inadvertently” executed at the “abnormal rate of… 10 bitcoins for one ethereum, which was approximately 125 times higher than the actual market price of ethereum on April 19,” the exchange admitted. Quoine attributed the cause to a technical glitch which occurred when it was “reconfiguring passwords for its critical systems to fend off persistent attempts by hackers to break into its systems,” adding that:

The glitch severely disrupted Quoine’s ability to retrieve actual market prices for bitcoin and ethereum.

Was the Reversal Fraudulent?

B2C2 claims Quoine “acted fraudulently” because their trading agreement states that orders are irreversible once filled.

Bitcoin Exchange Sued for 3085 Bitcoins After Reversing Bitcoin-Ether TradesIn contrast, the exchange claims that it was entitled to do so because the trades were “mostly trades with huge mark-up over fair global market price.” In addition, it revealed that B2C2 had done other bitcoin and ether-related trades on its platform at prevailing market rates between April 15 and 18. Quoine asserted that B2C2, as a “sophisticated” investor, should have suspected that the “abnormal rate” was a mistake, adding that the market maker was “being opportunistic and seeking to profit from a technical glitch.”

The plaintiff is seeking to recover 3084.78582325 bitcoins from Quoine in Singapore’s High Court; no dollar amount was provided in the lawsuit, according to The Straits Times. The price of one bitcoin has more than doubled by the end of July from its April 19 price of $1,221.

Bitcoin Exchange Sued for 3085 Bitcoins After Reversing Bitcoin-Ether Trades
Bitcoin’s exchange rate vs the USD, April 19, $1,221.

Should Exchanges Reverse Trades?

Other bitcoin exchanges have also had to decide on trade reversals. In December 2015, Gemini was heavily criticized for reversing a trade after a customer placed a very large buy order on its platform in error. The exchange stated that its decision was due to the trade being “empirically disruptive to an orderly market.”

Bitcoin Exchange Sued for 3085 Bitcoins After Reversing Bitcoin-Ether TradesLast month, Coinbase came under fire from its users for not reversing trades during the Ethereum flash crash, which caused the price of ETH to fall from around $320 all the way down to 10 cents on its GDAX platform. One investor placed a multi-million dollar ETH sell order, sinking its price and triggering “approximately 800 stop loss orders and margin funding liquidations,” GDAX explained. However, two days later, the exchange announced that it would honor all executed buy orders as well as credit customers who had margin calls or stop loss orders executed using company funds.

Do you think Quoine should have reversed the trades? Let us know in the comments section below.

Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Quoine, Coinbase, and Bitcoin.com

Need to calculate your bitcoin holdings? Check our tools section.

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How Airbitz Hopes to Keeps Bitcoin Decentralized on Mobile Wallets

Airbitz’s New Features Allow Bitcoin to Remain Decentralized on Mobile Wallets

Airbitz is one of the more popular mobile bitcoin wallets among those who believe in the digital asset’s core tenet of decentralization. Recently, Bitcoin Magazine caught up with Airbitz CEO Paul Puey to get his thoughts on preserving Bitcoin’s decentralization in a smartphone environment.

“Decentralization has always been a key goal of our wallet, but of course balanced with usability,” Puey told Bitcoin Magazine. “While we present a login interface that mirrors a centralized, hosted solution, our wallet can still function even if Airbitz servers are 100% down. This is a unique proposition that is non-existent in the cryptocurrency or legacy technology space.”

Recently, Airbitz have added two features that point to the bitcoin wallet’s commitment to a decentralized economy: LibertyX integration and the ability to point one’s mobile wallet to a specific full node. Puey discussed these two features with Bitcoin Magazine, in addition to what Airbitz will be working on in the future.

LibertyX Integration

Earlier this year, a LibertyX plugin was added to the Airbitz wallet. This allows Airbitz users to find stores where they can buy bitcoin for cash from within their mobile wallet.

LibertyX is a service that allows people to purchase bitcoin with cash from a local store. A map of participating stores is available on their website, and amounts of up to $1000 worth of bitcoin can be purchased at these locations per day.

When purchasing $200 worth of bitcoin or less from LibertyX, a verified phone number is all that is needed to make a purchase. Amounts above $200 require further ID verification.

LibertyX users are able to receive their bitcoin after giving a cashier cash and a code generated from the LibertyX app on their phone in some locations, while other stores require that the user enter a PIN code found on their receipt on the LibertyX app after making a cash payment.

When asked if Airbitz may eventually roll out an integration with some form of P2P bitcoin exchange in a manner similar to Mycelium’s Local Trader functionality, Puey responded, ”At this point, we will continue to promote our integration with LibertyX. We believe they provide a great user experience and price for those looking to acquire bitcoin for cash, and it requires significantly less engineering to implement than a local trader type feature.”

Point to Your Own Full Node

Another feature that was recently added to Airbitz is the ability to point the bitcoin wallet to a full node of a user’s choice. Puey explained the importance of this feature to Bitcoin Magazine.

“Bitcoin democratizes access to financial services, but part of that democratization is choice — choice [as to] what services you use and support. The ability to choose your own node gives users the choice to connect to a node that implements the protocol they prefer, helping them put their vote on how they would like to define the future of Bitcoin.”

If a bitcoin user is not operating their own full node, then they are trusting someone else to make sure the rules of the network are being properly followed. By allowing users to choose a specific full node, Airbitz is making sure their users can choose who they trust with the job of the enforcement of Bitcoin’s consensus rules. Of course, users can also point their Airbitz wallets to their own full nodes.

The ability to choose a full node is also important when it comes to hard forks, as those who are not operating their own full nodes do not get a say in potential changes to the protocol rules.

What Else Is on the Way?

For now, Airbitz is mostly focused on their Edge Login SDK, which allows their Edge Security platform to be used for applications other than Bitcoin.

“You’ll see features and functionality really geared towards our Edge Login SDK and supporting our decentralized app partnerships like Augur and Wings,” said Puey. “We aim to significantly grow the list of partners utilizing Edge Login, and you’ll soon see new functionality that will help drive that effort.”

Puey added that Airbitz will continue to focus on the aspects of decentralization that they believe will extract the biggest value out of bitcoin and cryptocurrency.

“The concepts of decentralized ownership of value, decentralized private key security, decentralized access to the blockchain, and even decentralized development of the core protocol have been well promoted and supported by Airbitz,” said Puey.

The post How Airbitz Hopes to Keeps Bitcoin Decentralized on Mobile Wallets appeared first on Bitcoin Magazine.

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PR: Former PayPal Exec and Leading Online Reputation Expert Join Monetha As ICO Date Approaches

This is a paid press release, which contains forward looking statements, and should be treated as advertising or promotional material. Bitcoin.com does not endorse nor support this product/service. Bitcoin.com is not responsible for or liable for any content, accuracy or quality within the press release.

Monetha, an innovative blockchain enterprise committed to revolutionising global commerce with their simple, trustful payment solution, is proud to welcome two highly-experienced new team-members to their expanding company.

Eric Duprat and Dr. Jean-Marc Seigneur bring incredible expertise and skills to Monetha. They will help the brand achieve its groundbreaking worldwide goals as laid out in their dynamic roadmap: the company has been on-target since it launched in January 2017 – and is set to change the way merchants and buyers work together.


How? With their new, bold, powerful Decentralized Trust and Reputation System (DTRS).

Eric Duprat

Mr. Duprat and Dr. Seigneur might have different backgrounds, but their shared knowledge and skills makes them a formidable combination.

Mr. Duprat is Monetha’s new Payments Lead, while Dr. Seigneur is Decentralized Trust and Reputation Lead.

Mr. Duprat has over 20 years’ experience in global payment and security systems. He enjoyed huge success during his time with PayPal – raising their mobile business from $7M to a staggering $4B of payment volume across only 3 years and has led the release of PayPal’s iphone app.

Duprat studied at the prestigious Stanford University Graduate School of Business, and has made major industry innovations. He has a proven skill for driving startups to unparalleled success and for spotting powerful opportunities with immense potential.

Mr. Duprat also participated in the POS industry’s evolution as it raced toward mobile and multi-functional devices.

He said of Monetha:

“The DTRS is an excellent idea. After reading their white paper it was clear to see that the team had really done their homework and I am very excited to join their mission.”

Dr. Jean-Marc Seigneur

Dr. Seigneur is a recognised expert in trust and online reputation management and a .Phd professor/research and development manager at Geneva university.

He has advised diverse enterprises, including iconic global electronics companies (Philips, Nokia) and game-changing online retailers (Amazon).

On top of this, Dr Seigneur has assisted the European Commission, French Agency for Research, and the US Air Force Office of Scientific Research in information & security systems.

He has taught IT services engineering and online reputation management at universities in Switzerland, France, and Ireland. Dr Seigneur has also published more than 100 scientific papers on computational trust and online reputation management worldwide.

Dr. Seigneur said:

“I’ve researched attack-resistant computational trust and online reputation management for more than 15 years. Current business online reviews and ratings systems are too limited compared to what can be done with the state-of-the-art. Monetha can clearly improve the situation!”

Monetha: The Product

Monetha uses the Ethereum blockchain to process transactions up to 1000x faster than traditional alternatives, with low fixed fees of 1.5%.

Monetha are in phase two of their plans right now: bringing their strategising and prototyping to completion as they build an unbeatable team. Phase three is set to launch with their token sale on 31st of August 2017 – but their ambitious roadmap leads them goal-by-goal all the way to 2019.

Justas Pikelis, Business Lead and Monetha co-founder (with Andrej Ruckij and Laurynas Jokubaitis), said:

“We’re incredibly thrilled and humbled to have two experts of Eric and Jean-Marc’s calibre joining Monetha. Both gentlemen will prove integral to our ongoing growth, driving us towards phase three and the launch of our token on the 31th of August – and beyond! We look forward to changing the world as a bigger, better team!”

Monetha enables consumers to buy products from any country in the world, using any Ethereum-based cryptocurrency. The platform converts the buyer’s cryptocurrency of choice into a fiat currency, with a QR code designed to be scanned by cryptowallets ready for transactions.

Merchants will usually receive their payments within one minute of the transaction, with that guaranteed 1.5% fee.

Traditional online payment systems involve as many as 16 steps within a single transaction, often carrying large fees. Monetha aims to make this one step only, with a fixed-rate fee far lower to benefit merchants across the globe.

To learn more about Monetha, and follow the countdown to their token sale launch, visit https://www.monetha.io/

About Monetha:

Monetha is on a mission to change commerce – forever. Their Decentralized Trust and Reputation System (DTRS) will empower merchants and consumers alike with the ability to view transparent reviews, building a more trustful process. Monetha will also reduce the number of transaction steps from up to 16 to one, and provide merchants with a fixed commission fee of 1.5%.

Press Contact Email Address
[email protected]
Supporting Link

This is a paid press release. Readers should do their own due diligence before taking any actions related to the promoted company or any of its affiliates or services. Bitcoin.com is not responsible, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on any content, goods or services mentioned in the press release.

The post PR: Former PayPal Exec and Leading Online Reputation Expert Join Monetha As ICO Date Approaches appeared first on Bitcoin News.

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BTC-e on Refunds, the FBI and Alexander Vinnik

BTC-e on Refunds, the FBI and Alexander Vinnik

On July 31 the bitcoin exchange BTC-e sent a message over Twitter and on the forum Bitcointalk concerning the company’s recent website seizure by U.S. law enforcement. Additionally, the statement claims that Alexander Vinnik was not the head operator of BTC-e and further states the detained Russian was never an employee.

Also Read: BTC-e Operator Indicted and Connected With Missing Mt Gox Funds

BTC-e Reveals Information on FBI Takedown

Bitcoin.com recently reported on the recent takedown of the exchange BTC-e and the arrest of its alleged operator Alexander Vinnik. According to U.S. law enforcement Vinnik operated the trading platform and laundered $4B worth of bitcoins tethered to illicit activities since 2011. The exchange domain was seized following the arrest of Vinnik by six law enforcement agencies working on the investigation, and now many innocent BTC-e traders are concerned about their holdings. Then on Monday someone who had access to the company’s Twitter handle and Bitcointalk account sent out a message to the public.

“On July 25, FBI staff came to the data center where our server equipment was located and seized all of the equipment, the servers that contained databases and the purses of our service,” explains the translated BTC-e message on the Bitcointalk forum. “For almost six days now we could not get sane information from our hosting provider on what happened to our servers and because of this information we publish now.”

BTC-e Makes a Statement on Refunds, the FBI and Alexander Vinnik
BTC-e announces its statement via Twitter on July 31, 2017.

The Exchange Claims it Will Process Refunds Soon

BTC-e also states that other employees servicing the facility were also taken into custody by the FBI. Moreover, the trading platform says it will soon be revealing how it might be able to come back online and start a refund process.

“The next update will include information on what options are available to restore the service, and also the procedure for obtaining funds, in the event that the service is not started. In the current situation, if the service is not started before the end of August, then from September 1 we will start the process for refunds.”

In the next 1-2 weeks, we will evaluate and publish information about how much money fell into the hands of the FBI and what amount of funds is available for return.

The exchange explains that the company has always worked on trust and “funds will be returned to everyone.” After the company provides some refund assurance, the exchange details that Alexander Vinnik was not an employee nor the head of the organization. The company’s statement also reveals that BTC-e will be answering questions in the Bitcointalk thread. However, there are no other statements from BTC-e within the thread or on Twitter at the time of writing.

BTC-e Makes a Statement on Refunds, the FBI and Alexander Vinnik
BTC-e’s Bitcointalk.org statement.

Spectators Still Unsure of BTC-e’s Latest Statements

Many bitcoin proponents are uncertain of the legitimacy of BTC-e’s recent statements and especially the claim that Vinnik was not involved with the company. One reason people are skeptical is because of the recent Wizsec article detailing Vinnik’s alleged participation in many crimes. The bitcoin security specialists say “Vinnik is our chief suspect for involvement in the Mt Gox theft” and further ties him to BTC-e accounts. Wizsec says they will be releasing more information on the matter in the near future.

For now, BTC-e customers and spectators will just have to wait for more information to come to light either from the exchange itself, U.S. law enforcement, or blockchain forensic experts like Wizsec.

What do you think about BTC-e’s recent statements? Let us know in the comments below.

Images via Shutterstock, Bitcointalk.org, and Twitter. 

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PR: LAToken Implements Blockchain to Sell Fractions of Any Assets — From Real Estate to Art Objects

PR: LAToken Implements Blockchain to Sell Fractions of Any Assets — From Real Estate to Art Objects

This is a paid press release, which contains forward looking statements, and should be treated as advertising or promotional material. Bitcoin.com does not endorse nor support this product/service. Bitcoin.com is not responsible for or liable for any content, accuracy or quality within the press release.

Through the creation of digital tokens, any asset can be bought, sold, or traded in fractional shares on a secondary market, enabling asset owners to more effectively leverage the value of their previously illiquid holdings.

London, July 27, 2017 – LAToken (Liquid Asset Token, LAT) announces it will issue 1 000 000 000 LATokens at a Public Token Sale on August 22.

LAToken is a platform that tokenizes assets and makes them tradable. It enables anyone to unlock the value of illiquid assets, including real estate, bank loans, and works of art. An investor needs LATokens to buy asset tokens created on the platform and pay fees for the creation of asset token and transactions.

The platform is based on an existing home equity marketplace, founded by the CEO of LAToken, that has facilitated 12,000 mortgage offers and more than 1,000 deals for 7 banks and 25 investors in the past year. Our advisory board is joined by Anish Mohammed, advisor to Hyperloop Transportation Technologies, David Drake, Chairman of LDJ Capital, and Ismail Malik, Executive Chairman of Blockchain Lab.

“My dream is to make NASDAQ on Blockchain with a wider range of tradable assets and a dramatic reduction of listing costs, settlement time, and transaction costs,” says Valentin Preobrazhenskiy, CEO of LAToken, former portfolio manager at Avega Capital, and creator of a back office for hedge funds.

The LAToken platform gives asset owners a new way to gain liquidity by making fractional asset ownership possible and tradable with minimal transaction costs. Asset owners can quickly get cash by issuing LATokens and selling fractional shares via the LAT marketplace, while keeping the actual asset for their use instead of borrowing money and paying interest or renting.

“The secondary and primary markets of fractional ownership of home equity and mortgages are now on the verge of a breakthrough, thanks to cryptocurrency Blockchain smart contracts,” says David Drake, chair of LDJ Real Estate Fund and member of LAToken’s Advisory Board.

Blockchain technology enables selling fractions of assets by issuing tokens backed by assets. Owners of artwork or houses don’t need to wait for a buyer to purchase their house or piece of art. They don’t need a major auction house, which might take a 20% cut, and they don’t need a real estate agent who takes 2-3%. They also don’t need to wait months or even years to sell their asset. The owner of the asset simply completes application forms via the site, signs token sale and asset sale agreements, and creates a token on the platform. After an audit, the token is listed on the LAT marketplace and the sale date is announced. After the sale, the funds are delivered to the asset owner.

By purchasing liquid asset-backed tokens (LABT) at the LAT marketplace, investors get a small piece of an asset. An independent custodian owns a piece of this asset and delivers cash proceeds from the asset sale to token holders. Token investors know that on a certain date in the future, this custodian will sell this share of the asset back to its primary owner. If the owner doesn’t buy the share back, the custodian will sell the entire asset to the market and distribute the proceeds to the principal owner and the token owners.

Investors get the appreciated asset price on their fraction of the asset.

The LAT platform includes a Wallet for purchasing and managing asset token transactions and a TestNet. Investors can trade and manage asset portfolios via the LAT investment terminal, which provides trading functions, access to credible assets’ data stored on Blockchain, and asset portfolio analysis tools.

LAToken has opened access to the platform wallet that allows tokenizing assets and listing for trading at the LAT marketplace. You can list your assets via latoken.com.

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This is a paid press release. Readers should do their own due diligence before taking any actions related to the promoted company or any of its affiliates or services. Bitcoin.com is not responsible, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on any content, goods or services mentioned in the press release.

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Blockchain Education Network to Conduct Multi-City ‘Bitcoin Airdrop’

The Blockchain Education Network will be conducting a global ‘Bitcoin Airdrop’ in partnership with Bitjob. It has been announced that fintech universities and cryptocurrency communities from 7 countries will participate in the airdrop, with the first event commencing on August 11 in Colombia. The events will distribute free bitcoin to young adults, and is set to see participation from many significant entities within the cryptocurrency industries.

Also Read: BEN Pays Students Bitcoin to Create Blockchain Course

The Airdrop Will Explore a Wide Range of Topics and Themes Pertinent to Different Sectors Within the Cryptocurrency Industry

Blockchain Education Network to Conduct Multi-City 'Bitcoin Airdrop'

The Blockchain Education Network has announced that it will be conducting a global ‘Bitcoin Airdrop’, starting in Colombia on August 11. The bitcoin event will then move to Russia, and will also make stops at the McGill University and the Richard Ivey School of Business in Canada; UC Berkeley, Wake Forest University, and St. Petersburg in the United States; the University of Queensland in Australia; Trivandrum and Bangalore in India, and in Puerto Rico. Several educational institutions are giving away small quantities of bitcoin during the event, providing young adults with the opportunity to experience cryptocurrency use.

The director of growth at the Blockchain Education Network, Alberto Jauregui, has stated that he believes the “Bitcoin Airdrop serves as an engine to introduce students to the disruptive blockchain industry and incentivize them to band together to form new [Blockchain Education Network] chapters or regions.” The airdrop will explore a wide range of topics and themes pertinent to different sectors within the cryptocurrency industry. Jorge Perez, the director of the Blockchain Education Network Columbia, will be hosting the first event at a local restaurant, and is expected to focus on bitcoin adoption throughout Colombia and Latin America.

The second event is to be hosted in St.Petersburg in Russia on August 16, and will be a collaborative event held in unison with an ICO-Hypethon – an Initial Coin Offering (ICO) focussed hackathon where developers will be developing digital infrastructure surrounding ICOs to pitch to investors. Director of the Blockchain Education Network in Russia and key organizer of ICO-Hypethon, Rodion Mikhalev, describes the ICO-Hypethon as “a mix between a hackathon [and] an accelerator. It’s a 48-hour event hosted by Crypto Friends, where Eberhard Lindfort will screen the top 20 projects out of hundreds of applicants. Teams chosen will receive help from experienced [b]lockchain experts which will help them finalize their business and them into successful ICO launches.” The Blockchain Education Network will also incentivize investment from ICO angels at the event, offering bitcoin to investors who partner with projects during the 48-hour event.

“This Year’s Event Is Shaping up to Be the Largest Ever as the Popularity of Bitcoin… Continues to Rise Globally” – Dror Medalion, Bitjob CEO

Blockchain Education Network to Conduct Multi-City 'Bitcoin Airdrop'

The Blockchain Education Network’s bitcoin airdrop began as a small event held outside of the main library at the University of South Florida last year, for which Alberto Jauregui hid paper wallets throughout the campus. For this year’s airdrop, Jauregui has planned a Bitcrawl in St. Petersburg, Florida – an event pioneered by McGill Students Cryptocurrency Club in Montreal, which sees the entirety of a main street agrees to accept bitcoin and become overrun by cryptocurrency enthusiasts for an evening.

The director of the Blockchain Education Network’s high school network, Sunrose Billing, has expressed his enthusiasm for the airdrop as a means to expose young adults to bitcoin, inspiring growth in the next generation of cryptocurrency adopters. “Blockchain [technology] and cryptocurrencies are really taking off and will absolutely continue to grow at a rapid pace. That’s clear when you see teenagers day trading, analyzing macro landscapes and taking the time to educate themselves about innovation in this space in their spare time.”

The airdrop’s principal sponsor is Bitjob, with Blockchain TV, Btc Media, Diid, and MLG Blockchain also supporting the event. Dror Medalion, co-founder and CEO of Bitjob, has stated that “It is a true honor to be sponsoring the 2017 Blockchain Education Network’s Global Bitcoin Airdrop across university campuses… This year’s event is shaping up to be the largest ever as the popularity of Bitcoin and blockchain [technology] continues to rise globally.”

Do you think that the Blockchain Education Network’s international airdrop will be successful? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!

Images courtesy of Shutterstock and Blockchain Education Network

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