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Without a Total Internet Shutdown, Bitcoin’s Regulation May Be an Intrinsic Impossibility

Bitcoin regulation remains a hotly contested matter. Lately, a number of legal factors regarding Bitcoin’s existence and use have come into play as governments pursue regulatory options.  Oversight jitters in East Asia have had a devastating impact on cryptocurrencies, triggering massive plunges. The slump in prices didn’t come as a surprise. “Regulation creates a more difficult business environment, as service providers decline to work with crypto startups due to uncertainty and a perceived threat of imminent and restrictive regulation”: Dr. John MathewsBitnation CFO- on why cryptocurrency prices took a hit.

 

South Korea, China and Japan have been at the forefront of pushing for a broad regulatory oversight. In September last year, China had declared ICOs and digital currency exchanges “illegal.” South Korea also followed suit saying it was considering a total ban on ICOs. Although major economies including the US and UK are merely discussing stricter controls, smaller jurisdictions including Estonia, Gibraltar and the Isle of man are eying cryptocurrency chance and aggressively pursuing regulation to avert the most clamant risks such as hacking and money laundering. Mojtaba Asadian– Founder and CEO of Darico AG– asserts the need for a “certain level” of regulation: “Blockchain is trustless public ledger that eliminates the need of central authority to authenticate the transactions using cryptography. However, certain level of regulation is welcomed to filter out the fraudulent activities and safeguard investor’s interest in such emerging market.”

 

But, is Bitcoin really regulatable? There are several key components that make it quite difficult to bring Bitcoins and other cryptocurrencies under full control. Bitcoins can’t be linked to any financial institution, territory or owners who want to remain unknown. Even if all cryptocurrency exchanges were to be shutdown or prevented from operating beyond certain borders, Bitcoin transactions would still be a child’s game-provided you have a simple VPN, a wallet and a network connection.

Regulatory attempts have also been worsened by the status of the existing banking regulatory frameworks that did not anticipate a technology like Bitcoin. Hence, without a united global front, there is very little chance of regulation seeing the light of day. Some experts believe that any attempts to control and stifle virtual currencies could only serve to increase their popularity. Andrei Gusev-CEO of WealthMan-says: “as a result of the push for regulation, cryptocurrencies will receive more recognition. Interest in cryptocurrency will increase. At the same time, the regulation norms in terms of enforcement will not be really effective because of the inability of the judicial system to make changes to the blockchain-based registry.” While echoing similar sentiments, Andrew Stanford-a Tech investor, entrepreneur and Partner at Asset Token ERC20– maintain that tangible regulations could be decades away: “Asset Token believes the regulations at the current moment are in a test phase and in a fluid state. Regulation will only speed the adoption by bringing it more attention.”

 

Setting and enforcing guidelines and standards is certainly essential, but should be done in a way that does not restrict virtual currencies or stifle its networks. Francesco Redaelli -Co-Founder and VP of Business Development at Koinsquare-underscores the need to protect this emerging industry while highlighting its ability to revolutionize the existing monetary systems. “The blockchain idea is really amazing, because it can seriously improve in thousands ways the monetary system giving more control, more data and more fast development to all the industries involved.”

Arguably, overregulation of cryptocurrencies (if at all possible) could hamper the growth of the internet.

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Altcoin News

Bitcoin Price Stabilizes At $6,500, Tokens Record 50% Gains

The price of Bitcoin is again swiveling around the $6,500 which is not necessarily a bad thing – especially not after the recent market downturn. Over the past 24 hours, it seems like the BTC price is quite stable.

In other news, tokens such as VeChain, Ontology, and PundiX all recorded 50% gains which made them one-day winners as the crypto market recovered and Bitcoin showed some decent stability.

The biggest surge was recorded by VeChain, which spiked by over 50% against the US dollar and became the best performing digital asset during the week. This is mainly due to investors and their reallocation of the funds from major digital assets like Bitcoin and Ethereum to tokens like Ontology, VeChain, ICON, Pundi X, Nano, and Waltonchain, all in order to push the market valuation up.

The large spike in the price of tokens is definitely a sign of confidence of investors in the market. On the other hand, the positive developments in the crypto sector such as the introduction of the Tracker One Bitcoin ETN to US markets, the high probability of the approval of the CBOE Bitcoin ETF as well as the creation of BAKKT by ICE, New York Stock Exchange, Microsoft and Starbucks all seem to have an impact on the market.

Right now, the ideal scenario is for Bitcoin to remain stable in the $6,000 region. As such, it would establish a solid foundation for a big rally in the short-term.

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Bitcoin News

New Patent By Coinbase Aims On Making BTC Payments More Secure

The major crypto exchange Coinbase filed for a new patent. On August 14th, the exchange filed for a patent that will enable online users to make Bitcoin payments more secure – directly from their Bitcoin wallets.

As the patent reads, the main issue right now is customers being required to compromise on the security of their own private keys, saying:

“Existing systems do not provide a solution for maintaining security over private keys while still allowing the users to checkout on a merchant page and making payments using their wallets.”

Therefore, the new system is designed to enable users to pay directly in a “key ceremony” which will encrypt private user passphrases into a masterkey during checkout in order to reduce the risk of the keys being stolen. Here, the masterkey serves the function of encrypting the private keys and signing the transaction – after which it is deleted.

The system also has a “freeze logic” which is essentially a process where the administrators can freeze all processes – for example, if a user reports that they are being hacked or their identity is being assumed.

“At any point in time after the master key is loaded, the system can be frozen. The system can be unfrozen after it has been frozen using keys from the key ceremony. The checkout process can be carried out when the system is frozen and when the system is unfrozen. The payment process can only be carried out when the system is unfrozen.”

Aside from this, the patent will also feature an API generation service that will enable the payment system to be used by other websites and services – implementing extra security with matching API keys stored.

Meanwhile, Coinbase has applied for many Bitcoin-related patents in the past. As the CEO of the company stated in a Medium blog post, “the goal is to keep the technology out of the hands of patent trolls who would patent services and hold them for ransom.”

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Altcoin News

‘Toshi’ Becomes ‘Coinbase Wallet’: Coinbase Changes The Name Of Its Wallet

The open source DApp browser and wallet which has been designed by Coinbase is now officially changing its name. From now on, the old ‘Toshi’ will be known as ‘Coinbase Wallet’.

The company announced the news in a Medium post this Wednesday. In it, Coinbase said that the name change will align with the branding of the company – but also will build authority and push more investments that may shape the future of the decentralized web.

 

 

The wallet which was launched last year and inspired by mobile money apps like WeChat is also getting a new user interface.

According to the Product Lead at (former) Toshi, Siddharth Coelho-Prabhu, the Toshi app would “upgrade to Coinbase Wallet” shortly and users can look forward at the “same product” with a new and enhanced look.

There will be some upgrades made to the app – in which Coinbase Wallet is expected to serve as a home for “exploring the decentralized web” and all the possibilities coming along with it. Aside from managing Ethereum and ERC-20 tokens (which was possible on Toshi), the new Coinbase Wallet will also support Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash as well as Litecoin.

Users on the Coinbase Wallet will be able to receive ICO tokens, airdrops and access leading exchanges directly from it – or store their crypto collectibles. When it comes to security, Coinbase said that the new wallet will be equipped with the “best-in-class secure storage” which will secure private keys using the “Secure Enclave of each device and biometric authentication technology”.

In the end, Coinbase’s plans are to make the new Coinbase Wallet an all-around wallet so that users can be confident in storing their crypto and “explore the universe of third-party dApps”. It will make everything possible – from taking out loans to completing tasks – all in exchange for crypto payments.

 

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Analysis

Analysis: Bitcoin And Ethereum Record New Gains After Mid-Week Drops

The past 12 hours have been positive for both Bitcoin and Ethereum. The two largest cryptocurrencies by market cap have risen more than 6% in value. Still, some analysts think that this is still not a confirmation that a positive short-term trend is coming.

The quick recovery was actually a correction which made the Bitcoin price climb to $6,445 and the price of Ether, the native cryptocurrency of Ethereum, to reach $295 (at press time).

Ether, which plunged by nearly 20% two days ago, has been in a stronger movement than Bitcoin and increased from $250 to $295 in less than 24 hours. Investors think that moving above $300 is the crucial level that ETH needs to secure right now. For Bitcoin, they believe that going anywhere near $6,700 will be a confirmation that a positive short-term trend is on its way.

Willy Woo is one of the investors and analysts who were right about the price of Bitcoin dropping below the $6,000 mark since May this year. As he recently stated, the market will likely experience another drop before the next mid-term rally.

Woo said that Bitcoin will test the $6,000 support level in the near future, even if it recovers beyond the $7,000 mark. As he stated:

“Leveraged short positions now near all time high. Anyone got a spare $35m in their trade account? Should be enough to trigger all those stops for a payday.”

Based on Woo’s analysis, a new drop would be a likely scenario for Bitcoin and the entire crypto market, before a proper rally comes on the way. This is mainly due to the lack of momentum, volume, and stability in the market.

Arthur Hayes, the CEO of BitMEX, has expressed his thoughts on the future of Ethereum, naming it a “sh*tcoin” and predicting “double-digit price levels” soon – mostly because of the market and its inability to support a huge spike with the current price trends.

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