Facebook Registers New Fintech Firm in Switzerland

Social media giant Facebook has apparently formed a new financial tech firm, Libra Networks LLC, according to a filing on the Geneva Commercial Register. Libra Networks was registered in Geneva on May 2 by Facebook Global Holdings II LLC. Per the official filing the firm provides: “…services in the fields of finance and technology, as well as the development and production of software and related infrastructure, in particular in connection with investment activities, the operation of payments, financing, identity management, data analysis, big data, blockchain and other technologies.” Facebook registered the…

Crypto Does Not Have Tangible Impact on Real Economy

The European Central Bank (ECB) stated that cryptocurrencies do not have implications on monetary policy or factor into the real economy in a May report. In the report dubbed “Crypto-Assets: Implications for financial stability, monetary policy, and payments and market infrastructures,” ECB looks into the potential impact of digital currencies on economic developments and monetary policy. The bank specifically states that such implications could occur should cryptocurrencies became a credible substitute for cash and deposits, while currently they do not fulfil the functions of money. The bank further says that…

Op Ed: A Summary of  NYAG vs. Bitfinex/Tether

In the latest on the ongoing legal dispute between the New York Attorney General (NYAG), cryptocurrency exchange Bitfinex and stablecoin issuer Tether, the New York Supreme Court has modified an April 24, 2019, preliminary injunction and now Bitfinex is allowed to continue using the Tether reserves that were loaned to it to maintain its ordinary course of business, such as paying employees and consultants. But Bitfinex may not withdraw any further funds from the Tether reserve and must comply with all document requests pursuant to the NYAG investigation. This modified…

Bitfinex Crypto Exchange to Debut New Exchange Utility Token

Major cryptocurrency exchange Bitfinex has unveiled its exchange utility token UNUS SED LEO, in a press release on May 17. The token will be useable for a variety of exchange-based activities and will begin trading on Bitfinex on May 20 against tether (USDT), bitcoin (BTC), ether (ETH), U.S. dollars and EOS pairs. The whitepaper for the project, published on May 10, describes LEO as “a utility token at the heart of the iFinex ecosystem.” iFinex is the parent company of Bitfinex. iFinex purports that it provides a stronger and more independent…

2020 Presidential Hopeful Yang Says Blockchain, Crypto Must Be Big Part of US Future

American entrepreneur and Democratic 2020 presidential candidate Andrew Yang has said that blockchain should be a big part of the United States’ future, Bloomberg reported on May 15. Speaking at the Consensus conference in New York, Yang — who is well known for his progressive pro-universal basic income stance — reportedly stated that: “I believe that blockchain needs to be a big part of our future. If I’m in the White House, oh boy are we going to have some fun in terms of the crypto currency community.” A challenger…

As Cryptocurrencies Lose Popularity, Regulation Isn’t a Priority

Crypto regulation is not a priority for the Russian government since cryptocurrencies have lost their popularity, the Russian prime minister has recently argued. Prime minister Dmitry Medvedev’s comments were reported by Russian news agency Fontanka on May 16. According to Medvedev, cryptocurrencies are not that interesting for the population anymore, which decreases the need for the adoption of crypto regulations. He said: “The popularity of cryptocurrencies has decreased so far, which likely makes the regulation issue not that relevant already.” Speaking at an annual international judicial forum on May 15,…

Crypto Miners Dominate Top 10 List of Most Prolific Malware Threats

A global threat report has concluded that the three most common malware variants detected in April were crypto miners, according to a news release on May 14. Check Point Research said Cryptoloot, malware that uses the victim’s computing power to mine for crypto without their knowledge, was last month’s biggest threat. XMRig, open-source software which is used for mining monero (XMR), was in second place. Rounding off the top three was JSEcoin, a JavaScript miner embedded in websites. Despite their prevalence, the company’s researchers believe that criminals are shifting their focus…

WeChat Merchants Banned From Crypto Payments

On May 7, Dovey Wan, founding partner of crypto investment firm Primitive Ventures tweeted that the Chinese social media behemoth and payment service provider WeChat is set to ban merchants from making cryptocurrency payments. This ban marks the latest effort to stymie cryptocurrency usage in China, with the government also mulling over ways of greatly decreasing the presence of crypto mining on its soil. WeChat bans crypto payments A rough translation of the Payment Service Protocol found on weixin.qq.com indicates that the ban is a result of changes regarding payment…

Estonian Consulting Firm Claims It’s Harder to Get a Crypto License Following Regulation

Estonian consulting firm Eesti Consulting OÜ has claimed that it is getting harder to get a cryptocurrency license in Estonia in a press release published on May 16. The Estonian government’s Ministry of Finance introduced changes to the licensing process on May 3. The new regulations adds a numbered formal obligation, extends the processing time from 30 to 90 day and establishes the requirement for a company or branch to be incorporated in Estonia. Furthermore, the registered office address and the board of directors now needs to be located in…