SEC Sends Wave of Subpoenas to ICOs

AriseBank ICO Fraud Case May Ensnare Additional Parties
: The AriseBank trouble with the government resurfaces. Apparently, they have been withholding from disclosing all the assets the founders own themselves and the assets that Arise owns. The total value of the identified is around $1 million USD in addition to more assets. The courts are looking to liquidate assets like computers and smartphones while keeping crypto in a wallet and awaiting a liquidation plan. You would think the courts would just return funds from where they were sent, but it seems you might have to deal with a long process to recover your funds. A warning to be careful in what you invest in because it could end up in a case like this. For this specific situation, the biggest giveaway was lack of legal documents that should have been publicly available. Like those of the businesses itself, which was registered in Dubai, and the paper support the partnership and FDIC status of the banks. The biggest giveaway was once someone revealed the founder’s criminal history of petty fraud would prevent him from even being affiliated with FDIC banks.

SEC Sends Wave of Subpoenas to ICOs, Including Overstock’s tZERO: The SEC has kicked off March with a scores of Subpoenas to companies and advisers. To reiterate as always, the SEC sees basically all ICOs as unregistered securities and will treat them as such. According to a statement from them last month, no ICO that has launched before February went through the process of becoming a registered security. Be careful with any US based ICO or ICO that allows US investors. The allowance of US investors gives the SEC a weird range of jurisdiction to protect US investors. In other cases, they have pursued foreign entities that offered unregistered securities to a US investor base.

Overstock Defends tZERO ICO: SEC Subpoenaed ‘Everyone Else’
: Regarding this, the president of Overstock’s tZERO subsidiary says they have not been subpoenaed. Instead they are being asked to cooperate because they already sent out regulatory paper to claim exemption for the ICO to be classified as a security. However, the Division of Enforcement is leading the investigation and apparently that typically happens only when there are more material concerns. We will just have to see how this develops.

Bitcoin Wallet and Jaxx Blockchain Wallet Contain Major Security Flaws: Cheetah Mobile Blockchain Research Lab made some big claims. A lot of news outlets are also not reporting the full story too. They claim that the Bitcoin Wallet is inherently allowing hackers to access the wallet since it stores things in plain text. It’s been revealed that an exploit needs to access your root and it isn’t inherently accessible. So it is more on your fault than anything. I don’t recommend using mobile wallets in the first place. Jaxx exploit apparently allows hackers to back up the private key on their devices to get to it and has week encryption. Not sure if that is the full story with this one, but just DON’T use mobile wallets in the first place because your phone is one of the most unsecure devices you keep on you.

$1 Trillion Investment Management Company Getting Serious About Crypto
: Pretty clickbait headline that implies that they are getting directly involved. However, the reality is that they are still cautious of the coin part of this industry. Instead this Wellington investment company is focusing on crypto related things like mining equipment manufactures and blockchain companies themselves. Great news for Nvidia and soon Samsung.

Walmart Wants Blockchain to Make Shipping ‘Smarter’: Walmart is looking into Blockchain to possibly work in tandem with drones for package recovery. Even without the drone aspect, smart packages involving blockchain is a natural progression as the IoT becomes more common. to Track Beef Imports Using Blockchain Platform
:, who are also involved in the same food traceability alliance as Walmart, is looking to upgrade their meat’s rep by utilizing blockchain. Knowing exactly where the cow was raised, what facility it was killed, and how it was transported will allow consumers to have more confidence in ordering meats online. It will also help when dealing with recalls and finding exact sources of disease.

Richard Sherman Loves Crypto But Hates Trading Fees
: Richard Sherman proves to be one of the more eclectic NFL players. On the xTrade interview, we acknowledged that exchanges are making a killing off their fees because a lot of people don’t realize how they add up. .5% doesn’t sound like a lot until you are doing that over 10 times a day and slowly reducing your holdings. It is even more apparent with the more money you’re playing around with. Expect as more Wall Street Traders move in they will expect and support whatever exchange has the lowest fees for their high frequency trading.

A Major Dutch Bank Is Considering a Cryptocurrency Wallet for Its Customers: Dutch Rabobank is considering allowing its users to be able to use crypto and fiat in a singular account. This isn’t official yet, but if it occurs users will be able to utilize it all via the Rabobank app.

Liechtenstein’s Bank Frick Is Offering Cryptocurrency Investments and Cold Storage
: I echoed a sentiment that appeared in a previous episode. A smaller bank mention how they are agile enough to pursue crypto and the big banks inflexibility is why they are anti-crypto. The reps for this bank say a similar thing. They recognize that their size can allow them to innovate and stated that big banks don’t understand and fear crypto. The unique opportunity of these smaller banks is the fact that they can investigate offering crypto related services and at the benefit of being compliant with regulation.

The US Government Wants to Keep $5.5 Million in Seized Bitcoin
: An update to a previous article, the US government is looking to seize the Bitcoins recovered from a fake document operation. If the accused are forced to forfeit their Bitcoins then that will be another batch of coins the government will auction off in the future and lend liquidity to the system.

Vulnerable? Ethereum’s Casper Tech Takes Criticism at Curacao Event: The key point is how Proof of Stake leaves you at the mercy of those with the most money. So, a group of rich bad actors can dictate everything. That’s why delegated proof of stake is better at least on paper since you can take the power away from bad nodes. It was also mentioned that while we have a good foundation in everything, the tech in general can have surprising vulnerabilities that you don’t discover until later.

Banks Successfully Transaction $30 Million in Securities Using Blockchain Technology: “Credit Suisse said the application, built on R3’s Corda distributed ledger platform, enables the two banking groups to swap legal ownership of Dutch and German government securities in a more efficient manner than with traditional systems.” This basically shows how tokenization of securities is inevitable. This may just be in a testing phase now, but it will be a thing that reaches mass adoption among institutions

Bitcoin’s ‘Kimichi Premium’ Has All But Evaporated: Market speculation is dropping to normal levels now. Korea is still a major source of market volume. However, the premium that they typically paid has drastically reduced. Seeing a 20%+ difference in the Korea market was common at the start of the year. The reduction of the premium is attributed to the government stomping on speculation mania and forcing regulation on exchanges.

Chile is Putting Energy Regulation on the Blockchain
: The blockchain is being adopted for Chile’s National Energy Commission. The focus is for it to authenticate “average market prices, marginal costs, fuel prices and the compliance with renewable energy law.” Allowing a more transparent energy costs.

Japanese Crypto Exchanges Officially Announce Self-Regulating Body: 16 Japanese companies are forming a self-regulating body. It is the best route for crypto to take to avoid getting slapped by the government. Hopefully Japan keeps setting itself as an example for the rest of crypto since the exchange Coincheck paid all the lost users funds out of their own pocket. Obviously, it would be better not to lose the funds in the first place, but it is significantly better than giving the users some exchange specific vouchers that would be useless if the exchange stopped running.

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