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The FBI owns our digital money

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One might think that hackers are the only ones to own our digital currencies without our consent, but after the hacker gets caught this may happen.

The Alexander Vinnik follow up

After the arrest of the Russian hacker the cryptocurrency exchange BTC-e has said its downtime was due to “FBI agents entering its data center.” but previously they stated that the reason was due to “unscheduled maintenance”. BTC-e has been down for almost a week and the aftermath becomes bigger when their customers start to get worried about their virtual money.

BTC-e announced that: ” if we cannot restart our service by the end of August, we’ll begin returning funds from Sep. 1.”

“Anybody who thought about this for a second understood that law enforcement was working on a case against BTC-e,” said Jerry Brito, executive director of Coin Center. “The question was just whether the government would catch them.”

He also stated that:

“BTC-e’s system was designed so that criminals could accomplish financial transactions with anonymity and thereby avoid apprehension by law enforcement or seizure of funds,”

Maybe it’s something larger that just Vinnik, but until we get more updates the speculations can go out of hand.

Is our money safe?

Everyone is waiting for future updates as the FBI has gained control where its wallets are located, and this is actually good news, although the same cannot be said about BTC-e. The company was hoping to resume its regular service by August 6 but as the days go by this seems less and less likely to happen.

The US Securities and Exchange Commission announced last week it was seeking $110 million from BTC-e for flouting anti-money laundering rules but the news are still fresh and there are more updates to come. In the meantime the funds are in the hands of the FBI and the information about the refunds will be known in the coming weeks.

 

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Bitcoinist Talks with David Drake

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In an interview with Bitcoinist, David Drake is the Chairman of LDJ Capital talked about his experiences with cryptocurrencies, his thoughts on ICO quality, and the potential consecuences of regulations in several countries across the world

Bitcoinist: David Drake

Bitcoinist: What is LDJ Capital? How much capital do you currently manage? 

David Drake (DD): LDJ Cayman Fund Ltd is a $200M cryptocurrency fund across the whole Capital stack.

I am also a board advisor for several Initial Token Offerings. Top 15 ICOs I advise raised $500,000,000 in the last 6 months.  Fortunately, I have 25 employees managing daily interactions with the 20 ICOs I help.

I certainly feel like a Lucky Golden Token.

LDJ Capital is a financially integrated family office with a global footprint and local presence in 12 countries. We raise interest from our family office resources and from our LDJ Capital team members, who include the likes of a former chairman of Nasdaq and CEO of Intel Capital. We are taking on a few more ICOs on a road trip in the next few months. 

Bitcoinist: Is your fund involved in cryptocurrency trading? 

DD: Yes, we’re involved in investing in crypto trading, as well as long-term investments but I’d say 80% of our trading you buy and hold as we are long-term players and looking in on the line of strong fundamentals.

After having underwritten and worked with 250 different funds we have finally learned how to understand and underwrite the best of the best. I made it 12 xx on quantstamp making millions.

Bitcoinist: What is your experience with Bitcoin/cryptocurrencies? 

DD: My job is best performed as a global strategist and board advisor. In parallel 150 family offices, crypto traders and hedge funds globally rely on my opinion. Thus, I need your ICO quality to be institutional-grade. 

Bitcoinist: What determines whether an ICO is “institutional-grade”?
DD: Equity capacity, revenue, existing business history, leadership, composition, regulatory framework, brand recognition.
Bitcoinist: What are your thoughts on crypto in 2018 so far? Typical January price correction across the board or something more serious? 

DD: I think we will have Regulators stirring up the marketplace several times a week for the next two months until the SEC comes out with a direction and institutions are starting to invest.

At that point, prices will go off and I think that’s going to happen around March and April.

Bitcoinist: What kind of impact will Facebook no longer allowing crypto ads have on the industry? Is this a good thing (e.g. no more BitConnect ads) or will it have a negative impact? 

DD: I think the industrial address will slow down the growth and the hype of the business, and that’s a good thing.

Bitcoinist: How about China banning ICO’s and clamping down on its mining industry? Is this the end of China being a dominant player in crypto? 

DD: The Chinese moved their business to Japan, Korea, Hong Kong and Shanghai. Chinese exporters are getting paid in foreign fiat so they’re still very big exporters of capitals as they export their product. 

Source: http://bitcoinist.com/

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Cryptocurrencies is not Illegal in India

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Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has made some comments on the fact that cryptocurrencies are completly legal in India and that the government will move to make use of the star technology, Blockchain.

“…The Government does not consider crypto-currencies legal tender or coin and will take all measures to eliminate use of these crypto-assets in financing illegitimate activities or as part of the payment system. The Government will explore use of Blockchain technology proactively for ushering in digital economy.”

In an interview with Yourstory.com, Khurana clarified some of the doubts related to the issue with cryptos in India.

Interview with Yourstory: India

YourStory: What do you think about the FM’s mention on cryptocurrency in the Budget?  

Ajeet Khurana: We are extremely happy that something like cryptocurrency found mention in the Budget. It only goes on to say that the impact it has is so widespread, and there is an understanding that it exists in a strong way.

However, on the take of it not being a legal tender, we completely agree with the government on its  position.

We understand the concern around the illicit use of cryptocurrency and have maintained this position. Cryptocurrency enterprises have been maintaining complete transparency through KYC and other procedures to reduce the illicit use of these assets.

YS: The FM stated that cryptocurrency is not a part of the ‘payment system’. What is your view on this?

AK: The payments system includes a lot of things like the settlement mechanism, and the banking system. In recent times, digital wallets and other payment mechanisms have been added to the entire scenario.

What the Finance Minister might be saying is that cryptocurrency is not considered to be a part of these payment systems. Similarly, gold is not part of a payment system, but people still barter assets like gold for goods, as long as both parties record the transaction. It is an asset barter transaction.

There is a little subjectivity on the matter. Can an individual swap cryptocurrency for another cryptocurrency?

We have to wait for clarification on what the Finance Minister meant when he mentioned payment system.

YS: What should the end-investor in cryptocurrency take from this announcement?

AK:  There has been no indication by the government that it is banning exchanges. Neither does it stop people from holding a cryptocurrency. It is just saying that the government doesn’t recognise cryptocurrency as money, which no country in the world does except Japan.

YS: We see a powerplay when it comes to banks pulling out from crypto exchanges in the country. Isn’t this hinting at something? 

AK: We have had this discussion, and what we are sure of is that banks who have taken the action of not providing accounts or services to these exchanges have done it on their own will.  They haven’t been instructed by the RBI to do so, and the Central Bank hasn’t issued any circular in this regard.

Source: https://yourstory.com/

 

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Canada’s First Blockchain ETF

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Harvest Portfolios has just received a green light to issue Canada’s first ever Blockchain-based Exchange Traded Fund (ETF), according to reports in a press release in February.

Canada’s First ETF

Canada's

The fund will begin trading on the Toronto Stock Exchange at the beginning of next week.

First Trust’s ETF manager Karl Cheong stated that “every conversation with clients inevitably” will lead to questions rabout Bitcoin and Blockchain tech investments.

However, following the news from Canada’s new ETF, regulators at the US believe that funds such as that one are not yet ready for regulations under US laws.

On the other hand the director of the SEC, Dalia Blass said that there are “significant outstanding questions concerning how funds holding substantial amounts of cryptocurrencies and related products” would fit with legal requirements in the US.

Still, it seems like Canada has earned the right to celebrate its first Blockchain based Exchange Traded Fund.

 

 

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