The Bitcoin ecosystem continues to advance at a steady pace
as it becomes more mature and integrated into everyday life. This past week has seen a flurry of activity, just like every week before it, and every step is leading to a time when cryptocurrency is fully accepted as an alternative to fiat. While there is still a lot of controversy, such as that centered on Facebook and Binance, the overall progress looks promising.
Social media platform Kik was on its last breath, having to face a lawsuit by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Ready to throw in the towel on the platform so it could fight to save its Kin token, Kik has now found a new home and is going to be relaunched by MediaLab. Coming soon, according to the new owner, is a bigger and better messaging platform that could, eventually, offer some sort of monetizing feature. Satoshi Nakamoto has said it all along and regulators are now reinforcing his assertion. Cryptocurrency must be seen as a solution that operates within the framework of financial regulations. Satoshi designed Bitcoin to work in tandem with fiat and its guidelines, not above or around them, and the U.S. Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) agrees. It has said that all companies in the crypto space are prohibited from allowing complete anonymity and that they must comply with financial laws regarding anti-money-laundering policies. If they don’t, they could be held legally accountable.
New York is considering making changes to its BitLicense program. The state’s Department of Financial Services introduced the program several years ago as a way to ensure crypto companies operating in New York are legitimate and somewhat regulated, but the agency is looking to update its framework. The DFS is calling on crypto companies, as well as others in the industry, to provide input on how the process is working and what needs to be improved. The OKCoin crypto exchange is making strides in Europe. It has announced updates to its platform across the European Union and now includes a new payment channel for the Single Euro Payments Area (SEPA). This allows those in the EU to make more efficient deposits and withdrawals in euros and, to celebrate the move, OKCoin dropped all fees for qualifying transactions for a six-month period. In addition, corporate users have been authorized to make larger deposits and withdrawals through the SEPA channel. For all users, the new service means cheaper transactions.
The president of Crypto Capital, Ivan Manuel Molina, was arrested Thursday on charges of money laundering. The former banking partner to the Bitfinex exchange has been under fire after it allegedly “lost” around $850 million of the exchange’s money and the arrest could shed light on exactly what has transpired. It also means that Bitfinex, Bittrex, Kraken and BitMEX need to watch their backs. Investors of the Telegram Open Network and the Gram token introduced by Telegram are standing by their investments. When Telegram came under fire by the SEC, they had the ability to try to reclaim their investments, but have decided to let everything play out and see if Telegram can convince the commission that its Gram is not a security. There’s also the issue with Facebook’s Libra stablecoin. However, this saga is so big and changes so often that it needs its own space.
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