Urvashi Verma

Coinbase Releases Response to NYC Attorney General’s Probe

“Coinbase is firmly committed to the protection of virtual currency consumers and investors, and we are pleased to cooperate in this OAG initiative.”
Coinbase Releases Response to NYC Attorney General’s Probe

Coinbase, one of the largest cryptocurrency exchanges in the world, released a portion of its response to New York Attorney General’s (OAG) probe on Thursday.   

In a  five-page letter drafted by  Mike Lempres, Coinbase’s chief legal and risk officer, the company expressed its intention of cooperation with the OAG initiative:

“Coinbase is firmly committed to the protection of virtual currency consumers and investors, and we are pleased to cooperate in this OAG initiative. In fact, we applaud the OAG for taking action to bring further transparency to the virtual currency markets.”

The letter says Coinbase has taken steps to protect consumers from “insecure assets” by supporting only four virtual currencies: Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, and Bitcoin Cash on its platform.

Compliance

Mike Lempres writes: “We are very deliberate about which tokens we support for general trading to ensure compliance with the law and to ensure that consumers are not exposed to assets which we consider to be insecure or otherwise unsuitable for our platform.  Not all exchanges give such a priority to compliance with the laws, and many assets are currently available to investors outside of regulatory oversight.”

The letter says that Coinbase has taken strategic steps to maintain strict standards of transparency such as offering transaction confirmation prompts, receipts, and user tools to create an “intuitive and transparent” consumer platform.

To further prevent manipulation of markets, Coinbase plans to add automated surveillance tools to prevent fraud and manipulative conduct in compliance with the Feb. 7 guidance issued by the New York DFS.

The move makes Coinbase the second US-based crypto-exchange to add surveillance tools after an announcement by Gemini last week.

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Coinbase also shared that it has increased its transaction capacity by 1000 percent in the past six months and currently employs more than 300 employees and nearly 1,000 full-time contractors in its four offices.

Although the company did not provide detailed financial information in the public version of its letter, it revealed that customers had traded more than $150 bln in assets.

The company acquired Earn.com, a mobile application that lets users earn cryptocurrency for answering emails and completing tasks for $100 mln, last month.

To date, Coinbase has raised $225 mln from venture capital funding and finance firms.

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Darryn Pollock

If This is the Bottom For Bitcoin, What Will Its Bounce Back Look Like?

If Bitcoin has reached its bottom, what will the bounce back look like? Are we in for another rollercoaster ride to new heights?
If This is the Bottom For Bitcoin, What Will Its Bounce Back Look Like?

There is no doubt that Bitcoin has found itself stagnating in terms of price in and around the $6,000 to $7,000 mark. Many have called this a bear market and one that is holding the price down, with many predicting that its bottom has been found.

But, if the bottom has been found, and, as they say, the only way is up, what will Bitcoin’s bounce back up in terms of price and market look like? The cryptocurrency has only been around for less than a decade, so it is hard to predict its movements, but some are already seeing the future.

Vitalik Buterin does not believe that there will be any more 1,000 percent growth spurts in the future of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. However, the likes of Mike Novogratz feel that $6,000 is a classic bottom and the institutionalized money will drive it further.

Is this the bottom?

In terms of finding the bottom, it is an important exercise for traders, as it suggests that there will be no further losses from there. Novogratz, a former hedge fund manager at Fortress Investment Group and Goldman Sachs Group partner, believes $6,000 is it.

“Bitcoin has held $6,000. Yes, it is off its highs, but it has established itself as a store of value,” Novogratz said. He explained as well that the drop from those heights came as Bitcoin experienced a “classic speculative global mania” in 2016-2017 but is now on the upswing because the market has hit “seller fatigue.”

But if this is the bottom, what does the upswing look like? Bitcoin gained much of its traction by breaking records and molds with its climb to $20,000, but is that likely to be seen again?

Banks will experience “FOMO,” on the crypto trend, Novogratz added. “I think institutions are moving towards investing. It’s shocking how much has happened.”

No more exponential growth

Buterin has said that even with this institutionalized money waiting to enter the market, it is unlikely that the world will see such massive growth again as the excitement about the new and unknown cryptocurrency is over.

“The Blockchain space is getting to the point where there’s a ceiling in sight. If you talk to the average educated person at this point, they probably have heard of Blockchain at least once. There isn’t an opportunity for yet another 1,000-times growth in anything in the space anymore,” Buterin said.

However, Ethereum co-founder Joseph Lubin has said he disagrees with Buterin and that there is still plenty of people and entities that will enter the crypto space and help prop it up.

Countries along with the biggest corporations around the globe are already utilizing this nascent technology, so it will have an enormous impact on how whole economic and political systems are built was Lubin’s point.

Look at the graphs

One thing that may give insight into how the cryptocurrency market will grow is its previous rallies and falls. There have been many times where Bitcoin has grown by a staggering amount only to correct again and slowly build up to be bigger and stronger.

This latest rally to $20,000 may just be a precursor of things to come and a similar spike, and fall, but a much higher price could be on the horizon. Or, as Buterin suggests, the ceiling has been reached and the growth will be steady, a bit like after the Dot Com bubble burst.

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Eduard Ezhov

The 10 Best Crypto Channels and Groups on Telegram

Nowadays almost every crypto-related mass media run its Telegram channel on the platform. Here are 10 of the best Telegram crypto channels and groups
The 10 Best Crypto Channels and Groups on Telegram

Telegram is one of the safest ways of messaging in 2018. It supports end-to-end encryption, which ensures that third parties have no chance of getting access to users’ messages. Today the platform has over 200 million users, and over 15 billion messages delivered daily.

Probably, encryption and safety are the reasons why the majority of the people involved in cryptocurrency use Telegram for personal and business purposes. There are tons of Telegram-based exchanging bots, built-in wallets and other instruments for managing digital coins. So, it is no wonder that almost every crypto-related mass media has its channel on Telegram. Here are 10 of the most remarkable and readable Telegram groups and channels related to cryptocurrency.

(These channels obviously have different styles, audiences, and types of content. Some of them are totally incomparable, so I cannot just put them in a list from good ones to the best ones. In order to avoid comparing incomparable things, the channels are separated depending on their topics.)

U.Today

U.Today has a special place in this top. First, you will certainly like it, if you are reading this website. Besides, the channel can hardly be attributed to any of the topics below. It is not oriented to trading or some special technical researches. The style of articles here is quite popular, so it will be interesting for a wide audience.
Unlike most of news channels, U.Today makes diversified publications for Telegram. The content is related to the website, but it is still independent. You can get the most remarkable news and statistics from Telegram, and then go to the website for full information. It is important to note, because other channels often just post links in Telegram, without any special content.

Trading channels

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This type of groups and channels should be considered an instrument for crypto traders. Here you can find some special information about tendencies in the market, statistics and trading tools. This content is not really intended for a wide audience, but it is quite helpful for trading.

Crypto Charters

This channel is one of the most readable for traders. Authors create content in an easy-to-understand form and often with a bit of humor. That is why it is a good option if you are slightly familiar with trading and want to understand it more deeply. However, it requires knowing the basics of exchanging technologies to understand some publications correctly.

A major part of publications in this channel is related to Bitcoin. Authors often talk about BTC course and perspectives, which makes the channel even more helpful for Bitcoin-traders.

Cache Charts

Cache Charts is a less technical channel. Authors are experienced traders. They often provide easy explanations of the tendencies in the market and share some useful trading tools. The content is easy to perceive and it does not require knowing special technical terms. In addition, here you can find some useful advice on how to trade if you are not skilled enough to analyze the market by yourself.

What makes the channel less attractive is that it is not free now. The price of joining is 0.01 BTC per month. I am not saying whether it is worth it or not, but you can research the archive of the channel if you are thinking about it.

UK Crypto Premium

This channel is devoted to the technical analysis of the market and distinct coins. Here you can find a lot of useful information that helps to create an actual market strategy and optimize your crypto portfolio. Authors always keep track of the latest news and provide some interesting data for traders. In addition, sometimes news and crypto-related articles diversify the content.

UK Crypto Premium’s content is not really difficult to understand. It will be helpful even for beginners. Although some terms may be unfamiliar, the style of the content is quite popular and easy to comprehend.

News channels

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Here I decided to recommend some crypto channels that are not focused on a particular coin or crypto-exchange. Whatever you are interested in, it is important to know about big events, updates and releases. Here are some popular channels that create news publications about the most important things in the crypto community.

CoinDesk

CoinDesk is probably the most popular crypto-media for English speakers. It is a well-known website where almost all types of crypto-related content are published, including:

  • News

  • Guides

  • Researches

  • Statistics

  • Technical reviews

  • Informational articles etc.

They have a Telegram channel, and it is mostly focused on news. CoinDesk has to be on this list because it is one of the well-trusted media, where you can find actual news and research.

It is important to note that the admins do not publish original content in the CoinDesk Telegram channel. They just take articles and news from the site. However, the instant view feature in Telegram allows users to conveniently read the articles in the app.

Cointelegraph

Cointelegraph is another popular crypto-news media. They have a more developed channel with 93k subscribers on Telegram, but the style of publications is the same as that of CoinDesk – it is just articles from the web site. They create about 10-15 posts on Telegram per day. One additional feature of Cointelegraph is that it has a Telegram channel for Spanish speakers.

As for topics, the majority of publications is about the latest events in the crypto-industry. Sometimes the admins publish analytical research, so you can get independent, statistical information about the state of the market. In addition, they have a YouTube channel with well-made animation videos about blockchain technologies. This will help you understand the main concepts of blockchain if you are beginner in crypto-industry.

News Bitcoin.com

I suppose the name of the channel can say a lot about its topic and type of the content. It is one of the best channels for those who are actively interested in bitcoin, including traders, holders and others. Actually, even if you prefer altcoins, you cannot refuse that bitcoin has a great infliction on the industry, so sometimes it is interesting to read about how it is developed.

The channel has 70,000 subscribers, and works the same way as CoinDesk and Cointelegraph. Users can read some news and research on Telegram, and guides, statistics, and informational articles are available on the website. What makes the site different is that it was founded by Roger Ver, one of the people who was developing Bitcoin in the first years of its existing. Actually, the domain bitcoin.com speaks for itself.

Bots

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Bots are a very special type of Telegram’s initial structure. They function as a built-in application that can serve a lot of purposes. Commonly, the algorithm of working with a bot is very simple: the user sends a command and gets a reply. Some bots use menus to work faster and improve the overall user experience.

I am not talking about bots for trading, sending and keeping cryptocurrency. You should be very careful using them because they are often a scam. The bots listed below are just a convenient and fast way to get much-needed information and data from different websites.

BitcoinPriceAnalyticsBot

This is an indispensable tool for Bitcoin-traders and holders. The bot does simple work: it is always monitoring Bitcoin’s actual price for you. We know that BTC’s course is quite volatile and unpredictable. It may go down or up 3-5% in one day. If you do not want to check it every hour, BitcoinPriceAnalyticsBot will be very helpful. It allows users to set upper and lower BTC prices, and when the course hits any of these points, the bot will send a notification. It is a good instrument to help you remain calm about Bitcoin’s price course without checking it too often.

CoinMarketCap

CoinMarketCap is a website where you can find statistical information about almost all cryptocurrencies. Here you will find available not only the current price, but also a history of developing of a course, capitalization and trading volume for every coin. The site also contains a lot of information about exchanges, total market capitalization, the biggest events and so on.

The bot functionality is not so wide. Actually, this is not an official bot, but rather it is just made with the API that CoinMarketCap provides to developers. The bot has the following features:

  • Monitoring the prices of the top 10 cryptocurrencies

  • Sending notifications about changes in the price

  • Monitoring the total capitalization of the market

  • Viewing a history of the price of chosen coin for the last 7 days

API is a developer’s special tool that allows third parties to take some data from the website. So, the information provided by the bot is the same that you can find in CoinMarketCap.

ICO

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It is not a secret that the first investors of any blockchain project sometimes get incredible revenue. Nevertheless, it is a great risk, because no one can say for sure if the project will be successful. Here are some channels for those who like to try their luck investing in ICOs.

ICO Drops

Probably the most well trusted ICO channel. It has about 40k subscribers. Admins publish news about the most remarkable ICOs and Airdrops almost every day. Actually, ICO Drops is a popular website where you can find tons of information and statistics about new blockchain projects. However, if you do not have time to research the site, the telegram channel is a good option.

ICO Countdown

Another popular group devoted to upcoming ICOs. It is a chat where users can discuss some interesting projects. This might be very informative because you can share your opinion with other investors and help someone make the right decision (or maybe someone will help you with that).

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Darryn Pollock

From Scams to Failed ICOs, 800 Cryptos Perish in 18 Months

The cryptocurrency boom has seen many coins go bust as a study finds over 18 months 800 coins have died
From Scams to Failed ICOs, 800 Cryptos Perish in 18 Months

Following the boom in interest in Bitcoin, a slew of new cryptocurrencies were quickly birthed. Some of them for legitimate reasons, contributing to the cryptocurrency space, while some were scams, and even a waste of time. 

Because of the fickle nature of these ICOs and some of these less than profitable projects, it has been estimated that some 800 cryptocurrencies have gone bust, and are now worthless, in the last 18 months. 

Dot Com bubble comparison

The fact that so many projects have sprung up only to fail in quick succession has drawn further comparisons to the Dot Com bubble burst of the early 2000s. Bitcoin itself has been under a lot of scrutiny in recent times, falling under this cloud of being a bubble, but really it seems that perhaps ICOs are the issue.

ICOs were seen as a new way to get funding for certain projects, in the Blockchain and cryptocurrency space, where investors buy coins rather than an equity stake in the business. People usually buy into an ICO because the coins are cheap and could offer big returns in the future.

The problem is that the coins can also often fail catastrophically, and that is what has been seen in these finding of 800 dead coins. Many of them will have been failed ICOs, or badly run cryptocurrencies which would have cost investors a lot of money.

Companies raised $3.8 bln via ICOs in 2017, but in 2018 so far, this number has already shot up to $11.9 bln, according to CoinSchedule.

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Many scams

Other failed cryptocurrencies come in the form of scams. There have been plenty of scam ICOs that have been nothing more than empty promises to prize money off of investors which adds to the bad reputation of the ICO space, as well as the general feeling of cryptocurrencies. 

Some of these scam ICOs include Pincoin and Ifan. The two coins combined have suckered some 32,000 investors out of more than $660 mln when they refused to make cash payouts.

Pressure on Bitcoin

While these failed ICOs do not have a lot in common with Bitcoin, the fact that the major cryptocurrency is down 70 percent of its value this year is also fueling the fire for the anti-Bitcoin rhetoric. 

Yet, even worth the price down, the Blockchain adoption continues to gain momentum as many different major economic sectors build towards this new piece of technology

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🕵️‍ ICO Watch Eric Eissler

Tokenizing Financial Instruments: Past-ICO Review

👁 ICO Watch
To become a great tech company, one must weather the great crypto correction of 2019-2020 and get on the grid with financial regulators and government
Tokenizing Financial Instruments: Past-ICO Review

Tokenization is growing more and more, as people figure out to take ordinary assets such as real estate to tokenize their value and make them easier to buy and sell.

Jibrel Network is doing the same, except they are allowing users to digitize traditional finances such as currencies, bonds and other financial instruments by allowing users to make fiat deposits in exchange for Crypto Depository Receipts (CryDRs).

For those unfamiliar with the term, “Crypto Depository Receipts are smart contracts that represent the value of a real-world asset.

Users can convert Jibrel Network Tokens (JNT) into CryDRs representing fiat currencies, commodities, bonds or even securities. CryDRs can be transferred to another individual or entity, who can redeem the token for the underlying value in JNT with the Jibrel DAO. CryDRs have smart regulation embedded, meaning all transactions are KYC / AML compliant,” according to the website.

Currently, Jibrel Network already has one running project, jWallet, which according to the team can store financial assets such as currencies, commodities, bonds and shares in the Ethereum Blockchain.  

An alpha version of the wallet, which provides an easy way to store, transfer, and convert ERC20 compatible tokens, has already been released.

In addition, the jWallet incorporates a high level of security, and does not store any sensitive user data; none of the keys ever leave the device.

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Finance

In a one-month sale from Nov. 27 to Dec. 27, 2017, Jibrel Network raised $30 mln in capital from its ICO. The token entered the market on Feb. 5, 2018 at $0.42. At the time of writing, the token currently is priced at $0.15.

However, unlike most cryptos it was not a rapid decline, Jibrel Network’s token had several upticks in April and May before continuing its decline.

CoinMarketCap has it ranked at 245 with a $26 mln market cap and about $1.1 mln in daily trading volume.

Team

Yazan Barghuthi- Project Lead & Co-founder

Yazan has over nine years’ financial services experience at top management consultancies such as Oliver Wyman and Deloitte. He is proficient at Javascript, HTML, CSS, React and most front-end frameworks.

Victor Mezrin- Technical Lead & Co-founder

Victor has over 10 years’ development experience and ran a top three altcoin mining pool (pool.mn) between 2014 and 2016. He is proficient at C++/C, Python, Java, C#, PHP, JavaScript, and Solidity, the programming language of Ethereum.

Talal Tabbaa- BizDev & Co-founder

Talal has more than six years’ experience in financial advisory roles at top-tier consultancies (PwC) as well as private investment funds. He is proficient at Python and SQL and is learning front-end development.

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Getting on the grid

The main idea behind Jibrel Network is to be able to work with governments to be able to get the middleman out of the financial network and let the system run with the trustless smart contracts in place.

Barghuthi claims that this is the natural progression of the financial system with Blockchain technology in place.

While some may argue, that staying on the grid goes against the principals of what cryptocurrencies stand for, Barghuthi argues the contrary and points to the global economy as a massive untapped market for his technology.

“Okay, you can stay off-grid, and that’s a $500 bln market. But if you go on-grid, you can start tackling the issues with the $34 tln global economy," Barghuthi told Forbes in an interview.  

Survival of the fittest

While the technology and services sound very promising, the major challenge ahead lies in surviving the massive crypto correction of 2019-2020, as outlined in the roadmap.

Many cryptos are going to fold during this time and it is important that companies that want to survive to take the opportunity to have a well thought out plan to weather the storm. CryptoComes wanted to gain further insight into how the company plans to position itself to weather the storm and then, as described in the roadmap, become a tech giant after 2020, but our inquiries went unanswered.

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David Dinkins

Cryptocurrency Community Reacts to News of Google Ad Ban: No Big Deal

Mainstream media is under the impression that Google’s ban on crypto advertisements is tanking the market, but the community seems to be shrugging off the news.
Cryptocurrency Community Reacts to News of Google Ad Ban: No Big Deal

The cryptocurrency community has generally reacted with optimism to Google’s ban of digital currency and ICO ads. But how can this be? A quick perusal of mainstream media outlets makes the situation look dire for Bitcoin, with headlines such as:

CNBC: Bitcoin briefly falls below $8000 after Google says it will ban

Investopedia: Bitcoin price spirals toward $8000 after Google bans

Bloomberg: Bitcoin drops to monthly low after Google bans crypto advertisements

Reuters: Google bans cryptocurrency advertisement, Bitcoin price slumps

These headlines are as amusing as they are inaccurate. For one, mainstream news outlets have no understanding of the ebb and flow of Bitcoin’s market. They assume that every rise and every fall must have a clearly explainable reason, namely, whatever the day’s biggest headline was.

Expert opinion

Several experts in the cryptocurrency community have given CryptoComes their opinion on the Google ban, and most of them are cautiously optimistic:

Christopher Slaughter, Co-Founder and CEO of Samsa, writes:

“In the short term, this may benefit the crypto community, which is overflowing with fraud and scams. Longer term, it would be good to have all channels available. Hopefully regulation and self regulation can make it safe and in Google/Facebook’s interest to offer crypto ads in the future.”

Craig Sproule, Crowd Machine Founder and CEO, agrees:

"This decision can benefit the crypto community in the long-run amidst the hype, current regulatory climate and the mainstream perception of the community given the pervasive amount of scams we're seeing. [There are] bad actors out there taking advantage of the excitement.”

Daniel Duarte, CTO of Auctus, is concerned about the ease with which scammers can target novices in the community:

"It's easy to set up a cryptocurrency wallet, create a fake website, publish the wallet's public address and collect money from people. Since Google can't analyze on a case-by-case basis and filter the scams, we believe it's better to ban them all. This will not hurt the crypto community, and ultimately is a good thing for less experienced investors.

Massive overreaction

CryptoComes published an editorial yesterday, skewering Google for their extreme overreaction. Rather than making even the slightest effort to filter out scam ads, the company just banned everything. If they did that with all advertisements, they’d be out of business.

Trey Ditto, CEO of Ditto, agrees:

“Today’s decision to ban ads on Google feels like they’re throwing the baby out with the bath water. We use Facebook and Google to educate potential investors and users about a range of topics and opportunities. I worry this punishes the good actors in this fast-growing space and will thus hurt the consumers and investors who are looking for information to make smart crypto investment decisions.”

Too many scams

Users on reddit have pointed out that since Bitcoin doesn’t have a marketing department, Google’s ban of crypto advertisements has no bearing on the currency at all. Rather, it hurts many ICO-funded projects and some altcoins that engage in advertising. However, with thousands of ICOs in the past year, and hundreds of new altcoins having emerged in that period of time, scams likely abound. Anything that can starve scammers of victims is generally welcomed, since the ban does little harm to Bitcoin in the long run.

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