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12 Jan 2019

“When will the bear market end?” is the refrain of bored and frustrated traders across crypto Twitter. “Soon” is the answer suggested by Delphi Digital’s latest report. “Bitcoin Holder Analysis Through Cycles” seeks to determine when selling pressure that has deflated BTC prices over the past 12 months will alleviate, signaling that market recovery could be imminent.

Also read: BTC Gets a Health Check in ‘The State of Bitcoin’

UTXO Analysis Points to a BTC Price Bottom in Q1 2019There’s a myriad of narratives buried in Bitcoin’s UTXOs, the unspent transaction outputs that are combined every time BTC is sent. The inferences that analysts are able to draw from this information are growing ever more sophisticated, with Delphi Digital’s new supplementary report the perfect case in point. The 14-page document, which complements the research boutique’s original report, outlines the evidence to support the notion that the current bear market may be reaching its nadir.

Because each UTXO corresponds to the date when those coins were last moved, it’s possible to determine the age of bitcoins held in wallets by examining the blockchain. The frequency of UTXO movements can be used to identify cycles that turn hodlers into sellers. While selling sounds like it should be synonymous with downward price pressure, that’s not necessarily the case. Dormant BTC wallets being used for the first time in a long time may indicate that prices have climbed high enough to incentivize long-term hodlers to send their coins to an exchange. Delphi Digital’s report draws three largely bullish conclusions:

UTXO Analysis Points to a BTC Price Bottom in Q1 2019This might seem like a bad time to be selling bitcoin, with BTC currently languishing in the $3,600 territory. But while that represents a 74 percent drop from one year ago, that doesn’t mean that current sellers are offloading their coins at a loss. Adopters who acquired their coins up until early 2017 could sell them now for a minimum 3x profit – and potentially multiples more. The report notes “we can assume … older [BTC] owners have exhausted much of their selling efforts, evident in the flattening of … older UTXO bands, coupled with the 1 year UTXO band reaching a floor and staying flat through the first half of 2018.” It continues:

In the second half of 2018, the 1 year UTXO band began to exhibit a positive growth trajectory directly in tandem with the 1-2 year band as older UTXO bands remained flat. We’re seeing an accumulation process now similar to the one at the end of 2014. This would imply a bottom is in sight.

Using some clever calculations, based on historical analysis of the Bitcoin blockchain and the activity of UTXO bands, grouped by age, Delphi Digital has endeavored to predict when the peak holding rate is likely to next peak. The date it’s arrived at is April 2020. The authors believe this conclusion is bolstered by positive exogenous events such as “the scheduled launch of Bakkt (Early 2019) and Fidelity’s custody solution (being made generally available in early 2019).” Should Delphi Digital’s prediction come to pass, UTXO analysis will gain newfound respect among traders trying to time market cycles.

What are your thoughts on Delphi Digital’s UTXO report and 2020 price prediction for BTC? Let us know in the comments section below.

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Russian-born entrepreneur Pavel Durov is liquidating Telegram Messenger LLP, the Britain-based company behind the popular messaging service Telegram. The same entity is registered as the messenger’s operator in the Russian Federation, where Telegram is currently banned.

Also read: 5 Crypto Exchanges Have Been Licensed in Gibraltar Since Regulation

The application to strike the limited liability partnership off the U.K. register was signed by Pavel Durov on Dec. 19, 2018 and filed about a week ago, Russian media reports. The First Gazette notice for the voluntary strike off is currently being processed and will be issued on Jan. 15, 2019, the Companies House website shows.

Pavel Durov Closes UK-Based Company Telegram Messenger LLPTelegram Messenger LLP was established in February 2014 by two companies – Dogged Labs Ltd. (British Virgin Islands) and Telegraph Inc. (Belize). In May 2018, however, Dogged Labs was substituted for Telegram Messenger Inc., which is also registered in the British Virgin Islands.

Durov has previously identified Telegram Messenger LLP as the main entity behind the messaging app, although he has never revealed the exact legal structure of his corporate group. According to RBC, the same company has been added to the Russian register of platforms “disseminating information on the Internet” in July 2017.

By law, these operators – messengers, email providers, and other platforms facilitating the online exchange of messages – are obliged to share information about their activities with the country’s telecom operator, Roskomnadzor, and data allowing the decryption of users’ correspondence with the Federal Security Service (FSB). They are also expected to keep records in Russia of all voice, video and text messages for up to one year. Failure to comply with these requirements may lead to the blocking of their services in the Russian Federation.

The attempts to block Telegram in Russia started when its operator refused to hand over its encryption keys to the FSB. In April last year, the Tagansky District Court in Moscow imposed a ban on the messaging service following a request from Roskomnadzor. In June, the Moscow City Court rejected an appeal against the decision filed by Telegram Messenger LLP.

Pavel Durov Closes UK-Based Company Telegram Messenger LLPTelegram and its various applications are registered by several different companies including Telegram Messenger LLP, Telegram LLC, and Telegram FZ-LLC. Together with his brother Nikolai, Pavel Durov also owns Telegram Group Inc. and TON Issuer Inc. RBC claims Durov did not respond to its questions about the closure of Telegram Messenger LLP. However, the news agency quoted Pavel Chikov, head of the human rights organization Agora representing Telegram in Russian courts, who said the move was not associated with the blockade.

According to other legal experts quoted in the article, the liquidation of the company, which is registered with Roskomnadzor as the operator of Telegram, will not change the status of the messenger in Russia. Alexander Pohomov, partner at Law and Business, said the creation of another company makes no sense as a new entity would be obliged to fulfill the same requirements as the current one. Pohomov believes that the decision is part of а fundamental restructuring of Durov’s business that includes a number projects beside Telegram.

Pavel Durov Closes UK-Based Company Telegram Messenger LLPOne of these projects is the Telegram Open Network (TON) which is aimed at providing Telegram users with a digital payments system. All of them, around 200 million globally, will get a TON wallet and the platform’s developers hope to make its native coin, the Gram, the “world’s most adopted cryptocurrency.” An ICO to finance the project was canceled last year after Telegram reportedly raised $1.7 billion from private investors. According to the publication, TON developers plan to launch the platform by the end of 2019.

Other reasons for the reorganization may include recently introduced changes in the legislation of the British Virgin Islands, where one of the partners in Telegram Messenger LLP is registered, or the upcoming Brexit. A number of businesses focused on the EU market have been preparing to leave the United Kingdom and according to Yuri Borisov from Legal and Financial Creative Solutions, the voluntary strike off is a “painless” way to terminate a company’s presence in Britain.

What are your thoughts about the liquidation of the company that operates Telegram? Tell us in the comments section below.

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At Bitcoin.com there’s a bunch of free helpful services. For instance, have you seen our Tools page? You can even lookup the exchange rate for a transaction in the past. Or calculate the value of your current holdings. Or create a paper wallet. And much more.

In recent cryptocurrency exchange news, Huobi’s EOS exchange has entered trial operations, Sharespost has facilitated a secondary trade of the BCAP security token, and Bithumb has obtained South Korean Information Security Management System certification.

Also Read: Bisq DEX Launches DAO on Testnet as Developers Seek to Decentralize Governance 

Exchange News: Huobi Trials EOS Exchange, Sharespost Enables Security Token TradeIn the last 24 hours, Huobi has announced the company’s EOS exchange has entered trial operations, which includes support for EOS/BTC, EOS/ETH, and EOS/USDT pairings. The exchange will be launched and operated by Huobi Pool, the mining arm of the company.

Earlier this month, Cao Fei, the chief executive officer of Huobi Pool, stated: “As an EOS super node, Huobi Pool has placed [EOS] ecological development high on its list of priorities. Launching this EOS exchange is simply the next logical step in our support.”

On Dec. 28, Huobi also announced support for EOS on the Huobi Derivative Market. The EOS derivative contracts support leverage of up to 20x, with the platform imposing maker fees of 0.02 percent and taker fees of 0.03 percent.

Exchange News: Huobi Trials EOS Exchange, Sharespost Enables Security Token TradeOn Jan. 10, the Sharespost alternative trading system announced that it had executed its secondary transaction of Blockchain Capital’s BCAP security tokens.

The chief executive officer of Sharespost, Greg Brogger, described the transaction as “an important milestone for the digital securities ecosystem,” emphasizing the company’s expectation that tokenized securities will “join preferred and common stock as the mainstays of the private capital market.”

While the company has described the transaction as the first secondary transaction involving BCAP, alternative trading system Openfinance launched support for BCAP trade during December 2018.

Sharespost will also provide secondary liquidity and custody services to users of its marketplace. Currently, Sharespost only support Over-The-Counter (OTC) trade of security tokens, but the company has announced its intention to later support real time trading via digital order book.

Exchange News: Huobi Trials EOS Exchange, Sharespost Enables Security Token TradeBithumb, the largest cryptocurrency exchange by reported trade volume, has received Information Security Management System (ISMS) certification from the Korea Internet & Security Agency (KISA).

According to local news, ISMS is the “highest” ISMS certification system in South Korea, comprising “12 items from 5 stages of information security management processes and 92 items from 13 areas related to information security measures.”

Last year, South Korea’s government mandated that cryptocurrency exchanges receive more than one million visitors and generate more than 10 billion Korean Won (nearly $8.95 million) in profit within a three-month period to obtain ISMS certification.

What is your reaction to the purported promise of security tokens? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!

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At Bitcoin.com there’s a bunch of free helpful services. For instance, have you seen our Tools page? You can even lookup the exchange rate for a transaction in the past. Or calculate the value of your current holdings. Or create a paper wallet. And much more.

Decentralized cryptocurrency exchange Bisq has upgraded its open source software. The revamped platform includes a new user interface in addition to marking the launch of the Bisq Decentralized Autonomous Organization (DAO) on testnet.

Also Read: Indian Bank Forcing Customers to Agree to Anti-Cryptocurrency Policy

Bisq DEX Launches DAO on Testnet as Developers Seek to Decentralize GovernanceThe latest version of Bisq’s software, v0.9, has seen the decentralized exchange launch its DAO on testnet.

The upgrade will allow Bisq users to experiment with the DAO. The software is designed so as to facilitate rewarding developers who contribute to the project in the form of the platform’s native token (BSQ) without centralized administration.

BSQ tokens are layered on top of the BTC blockchain as colored coins. Since launching in 2014, Bisq has received more than 25 BTC in donations which were used to back the creation of 2.5 million BSQ tokens. The first batch of tokens is planned to be distributed among the project’s 144 earliest developers and contributors.

When the DAO launches on mainnet, the platform’s users will be able to vote on prospective contributions and upgrades to the protocol, receive compensation for development, and pay for trading fees in the form of BSQ rather than BTC.

Bisq DEX Launches DAO on Testnet as Developers Seek to Decentralize GovernanceBisq’s current developers have described the DAO as a means through which to decentralize the operation of the exchange. Currently, Bisq’s website asserts that the platform’s “technology is fully decentralized, but its governance is not.”

The documentation highlights a number of shortcomings with the current governance model in which “the project founders” carry out “most maintenance, operation, and administration duties,” in addition to making “virtually all major decisions.”

This model, the website asserts, “does not scale; project founder have become bottlenecks incapable of addressing all user needs,” and introduces “censorship risk” as a result of operational responsibilities being “centralized in a small group of people.”

According to Bisq’s website, the model of token distribution employed by the DAO establishes the Bisq DAO as a “meritocracy” in which “those who have contributed the most value to the project in the past are those who have the most say over its future.”

Do you prefer to trade using decentralized or centralized exchanges? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!

Images courtesy of Shutterstock.

At Bitcoin.com there’s a bunch of free helpful services. For instance, have you seen our Tools page? You can even lookup the exchange rate for a transaction in the past. Or calculate the value of your current holdings. Or create a paper wallet. And much more.

Many would argue that comparing cryptocurrency trading with forex is like comparing apples and oranges, but that’s not entirely accurate. On closer inspection, there is a number of similarities between the two. For example, the underlying market dynamics of supply and demand will usually govern the prices of the respective assets. Here traders share their thoughts on the mechanics of each.

Also read: Faced With Cash And Forex Shortages, Zimbabweans Turn To Bitcoin – Even When It’s Banned

The Differences Between Forex and Crypto TradingIt takes a certain type of savvy trader to navigate unpredictable market conditions and emerge in profit. Let’s start with the pros and cons to be found from trading both crypto and forex.

Alex Mashinsky, CEO of Celsius Network, notes that crypto and forex both represent a digital store of value and can be purchased and sold with ease. They both have high volatility which creates an opportunity for quick profits going long or short. 

“The pro of trading crypto and forex is that these are global markets dominated by large financial players who have algorithmic trading capabilities. Most individual players cannot compete or match the trading and speed of hedge funds and large banks which swim in these markets,” said Mashinsky.

He explained that the biggest difference between forex and BTC markets is that unlike forex, bitcoin started and scaled via global retail trade and not via institutional players. This makes the BTC markets behave in a very different pattern than traditional forex markets.

Kyle Cox, senior investment analyst at Invictus Capital, stresses that bitcoin has an ultimately finite supply of 21 million coins, with protocols that control new issuance meaning there is little room for manipulation. “Therefore, trading in bitcoin would be purely focused on demand, which in turn would be based on adoption and in turn the quality of the project,” Cox explains. “Higher adoption of bitcoin essentially increases the size of the network, which means more users, higher utility and an increasing price. The lack of outside or centralised influence is unique, and a benefit of the genesis crypto asset.”

The Differences Between Forex and Crypto TradingFiat currencies, on the other hand, have potentially unlimited supply, as each currency’s supply is determined by the monetary policy of the specific issuing country.

“Each country’s central bank (typically) regulates the supply of that currency available through various policy mechanisms linked to its repurchase or interest rate, which can, essentially, be defined as the opportunity cost of holding cash in that economy. These policy decisions are conducted with an acute awareness of domestic and global macroeconomic conditions and imperatives, and thus result in fluctuations in both supply and demand,” said Cox.

Currency traders looking to profit will, essentially, look to buy currencies that show signs of macroeconomic improvement through the selling of currencies that show the opposite. “There is a fair amount of skill, and it must be said, luck involved in this process, as any honest trader would attest to,” Cox noted.

The Differences Between Forex and Crypto TradingAnother factor to consider is the nature of the bitcoin blockchain means that BTC is traded on a peer to peer basis, which in its raw form involves little cost.

Cox pointed out that this is due to the fact there are no intermediaries in the classic sense, as is the case in the foreign exchange market where brokers and aggregators facilitate transactions between participants, which can often add a layer of fees.

“Where intermediaries come into bitcoin, and other cryptocurrencies, is through cryptocurrency exchanges,” explained Cox. “These exchanges act as central repositories of assets, facilitating transactions and levying fees on this basis. So yes, this aspect can be seen as somewhat of a similarity [to forex] however with different mechanics. In truth, it is difficult to make a generalized comparison of actual fees as they vary widely depending on exchanges, currency pairs, volume and many other factors.”

The Differences Between Forex and Crypto TradingAnother crucial fact to note is that forex markets have deep and entrenched liquidity as a result of a long history of activity.

Cox explained: ”The phenomenon of globalization and technology have boosted activity in the trading of foreign currencies, as a result of ballooning cross-border transactions and wide availability of trading means and infrastructure. [Forex] is by far one the largest marketplaces on the planet, with daily trading volume in the trillions of U.S. dollars. Most of this volume is attributed to established, developed country currencies, such as the U.S. dollar, which serves as the reserve currency for the world.”

There are some similarities here with bitcoin, which can be considered as the dominant reserve cryptocurrency, and which most trading volume can be attributed to. That is where the similarity ends however.  “Bitcoin’s daily trading volume, which currently ranges in the mid-single digit billions of U.S. dollars, pales in comparison to that of the forex market,” said Cox.

A drop in the ocean, some might say. Bitcoin’s volatility is also considered to be far higher relative to that of the most dominant currency pairs in terms of volume. Cox explained that trading in emerging market currency pairs, which can show elevated periods of volatility, would be a far better comparison to trading in bitcoin.

The Differences Between Forex and Crypto TradingCrypto traders faced a tough year in 2018. After riding the highs of 2017, the low points in the current bear market have been tough to navigate through.

Cox said: “Trading, particularly that of a short-term nature, is a difficult practice that only a small percentage of players have ever managed to extract profits from, regardless of the asset in question.”

He added:

Of course, we often hear the success stories in the media, however, the many losses that have been incurred by participants seeking to time the market have been swept under the carpet.

The Differences Between Forex and Crypto Trading

One high profile success case involved billionaire currency trader George Soros who made history when he bet against the pound sterling in 1992 and made $1 billion in one day.  There are a number of lessons which can be found by analyzing the underlying causes of this crisis and how they led to such problems. 

Cox pointed out that Soros is one of the few exceptions who has had multiple successes trading against central banks over many decades. Also known as the man who broke the Bank of England, Mr Soros stands out as having been involved in several lucrative currency trades that span decades. He is credited with playing a pivotal in the British pound crashing out of the European Exchange Rate Mechanism (ERM), which basically pegged the pound to the Deutsche mark.

The Differences Between Forex and Crypto TradingCox commented: “[George Soros’] strategy was simple yet brilliant. Britain at the time was suffering from high inflation and exchange rate versus the U.S. dollar was under pressure due trade with the U.S. Soros quickly realised that the Bank of England would not be able to maintain its peg, sold the pound short through a systematic series of trades. Following this strategy, he profited as the pound decreased in value and some estimate that he made $1 billion in the process. Undoubtedly a simple, and profitable, application of a sound knowledge of macroeconomic forces.”

In conclusion, while there are, in certain areas, extreme differences between the bitcoin and forex markets, there are also similarities and the potential for more convergence as digital assets cement themselves in the global financial system.

As Soros himself observed:

Markets are constantly in a state of uncertainty and flux and money is made by discounting the obvious and betting on the unexpected.

What are your thoughts on trading crypto versus forex? Let us know in the comments section below.

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Need to calculate your bitcoin holdings? Check our tools section.

In Friday’s edition of The Daily, we cover the news about a vulnerability found in the Beam Wallet days after the launch of the Mimblewimble-based coin. Also, crypto card provider Wirex has added waves to its list of supported cryptocurrencies, and digital asset exchange Exmo has registered an increase in the number of Belarusian users following Binance’s move to restrict their access to its platform.

Also read: Trust Wallet Adds BCH, 35,000 Merchants Get Access to Crypto Payments

The Daily: Critical Bug Found in Beam Wallet, Wirex Adds Another CryptocurrencyThe developers of Beam, a new privacy-centric coin based on the Mimblewimble protocol, have found a critical vulnerability in their Beam Wallet. The bug affects all previously released wallets in both the desktop and the CLI version, the company behind the project announced on Twitter. The problem has been fixed and Beam said in a post on Medium it’s currently working with providers to upgrade their systems.

In another tweet, the Beam dev team asked all users to stop currently running Beam Wallets immediately. However, according to the message, they should not delete the wallet’s database, as the bug does not affect wallet data, secret keys or passwords. Instead, they need to uninstall the wallet, download it again from the website beam.mw/downloads and install the new application.

Beam was launched on Jan. 3, becoming the first coin based on Mimblewimble, a protocol originally developed in 2016 to improve the scalability of the Bitcoin network and enhance the privacy of its users. The cryptocurrency is already available for trading on the decentralized platform Bisq which promised to also add Grin, another Mimblewimble coin expected to launch on mainnet by the end of this month.


9.1.2019 20:20 GMT

Critical Vulnerability was found in Beam Wallet today.

Vulnerability was discovered by Beam Dev Team and not reported anywhere else.

Vulnerability affects all previously released Beam Wallets both Dekstop and CLI.

— @Beamprivacy (@beamprivacy) January 9, 2019


The Daily: Critical Bug Found in Beam Wallet, Wirex Adds Another CryptocurrencyThe popular online bank and crypto debit card issuer Wirex has added another coin to its list of supported cryptocurrencies. Users of the Wirex platform in the European Economic Area (EEA) can now buy, store, convert and spend waves with their Wirex Visa cards, the U.K.-based company announced in a blog post. The service also supports bitcoin core (BTC), litecoin (LTC), ripple (XRP) and ether (ETH).

“The introduction of the waves wallet to Wirex is an exciting development for both crypto-investors and our globetrotting Wirex Visa card users,” co-founder Pavel Matveev commented. “For travel, welcoming waves to your portfolio means that you can enjoy a wider choice of currencies to exchange from and store,” his partner Dmitry Lazarichev added.

Last month Wirex completed the introduction of Iban support for all EUR accounts. EEA users can now fund their account by bank transfer and receive euro payments. The fintech startup also raised the funding limits for account holders in the EEA to £15,000, €16,000 and $20,000. The company is now planning an expansion into North American markets.

The Daily: Critical Bug Found in Beam Wallet, Wirex Adds Another CryptocurrencyThe analytics department of Exmo, the largest cryptocurrency exchanges in Eastern Europe, has detected a six-fold increase in the number of registered users from Belarus in December, crypto news outlet Let Know reports. Exmo’s team attributed the influx of new traders to Binance’s decision to restrict access to its platform for the residents of a number of countries under sanctions, including Belarus.

In late November, Binance, which is currently the largest digital asset exchange by daily trading volume, informed its Belarussian users that its services will no longer be available in their country. In correspondence to customers from Belarus, the exchange urged them to read the latest version of its Terms of Use. Under the new ToU agreement, traders acknowledge and declare they are not on any trade or economic sanctions lists, such as those prepared by the U.N. Security Council and the Office of Foreign Assets Control of the U.S. Treasury Department (OFAC).

Since its launch five years ago, Exmo has registered 1.5 million users. According to the report, its daily trading volume reaches $40 million. The exchange, which supports trading pairs with fiat currencies such as the Russian ruble and the Ukrainian hryvnia, is currently 56th in Coinmarketcap’s volume rankings, with a daily volume touching $20 million.

What are your thoughts on today’s news tidbits? Tell us in the comments section.

Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Beam, Wirex.

At Bitcoin.com there’s a bunch of free helpful services. For instance, have you seen our Tools page? You can even lookup the exchange rate for a transaction in the past. Or calculate the value of your current holdings. Or create a paper wallet. And much more.

An Indian bank is reportedly forcing customers to agree that they “will not deal with any transactions related to cryptocurrency including bitcoins” when signing up for an account. In addition, there are reports of banks blocking accounts of their existing customers if they are found to have made crypto-related transactions.

Also read: Indian Supreme Court Moves Crypto Hearing, Community Calls for Positive Regulations

Amid banking restrictions imposed by India’s central bank, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), a major bank in the country, is reportedly asking customers to declare that they will not deal with any cryptocurrency transactions.

Indian Bank Forcing Customers to Agree to Anti-Cryptocurrency PolicyTwitter user Indiancryptogirl, “@Desicryptohodlr,” tweeted a screenshot of Kotak Mahindra Bank’s account opening agreement on Tuesday. One of the items customers must agree to reads: “I hereby declare that I will not deal with any transactions related to cryptocurrency including bitcoins. I also understand and agree that the bank reserves all right to close my account without further intimation in case I am found to undertake such transactions.”

Indian Bank Forcing Customers to Agree to Anti-Cryptocurrency Policy

Indiancryptogirl told news.Bitcoin.com:

Kotak Mahindra Bank Limited is one of the largest Indian banks. They have started to show this notice on account creation since past 1 month. This message comes as a ‘one last check’ before account creation and the cryptocurrency tickbox cannot be skipped or unchecked. As a result, to create an account with the bank, we have to agree to the message. Else we cannot begin any online banking service with the bank.

In addition, she said that the bank has been sending emails and SMS messages over the past six months notifying customers regarding its cryptocurrency policy. This follows the circular issued by the RBI prohibiting banks from providing services to crypto businesses.

However, she described that in the past month they have gone a step further and “have started forcefully obligating users to accept their notice while opening a new account with them.”

Kotak Mahindra Bank also displays a similar message on their ATMs. Twitter user “@Vivekmacha” tweeted an image of the notice. It says: “Virtual currencies (VCs) are not legal tender and do not have any regulatory permission or protection in India. We request you not to make transactions involving any VCs from any of your account/s. For any such transactions, the bank shall be acting in accordance with the regulatory guidelines which include closing your account without further intimation.”

Indian Bank Forcing Customers to Agree to Anti-Cryptocurrency Policy

According to Indiancryptogirl, “Many other banks have been sharing such communication on email and SMS since April 2018 with all their customers.”

The official website of Kotak Mahindra Bank also states that all of its branches carry a notice stating that the bank has disallowed “credit, debit, or prepaid cards for purchasing or trading in bitcoins, cryptocurrencies, or virtual currencies.” The notice continues:

If the bank were to receive instructions from the authorities, it would have to close any account that transacts in virtual currencies, possibly without any intimation, and would not be able to provide assistance in case of any losses incurred due to such dealings.

Indian Bank Forcing Customers to Agree to Anti-Cryptocurrency PolicyA spokesperson for Indian exchange Instashift explained to news.Bitcoin.com that Kotak Mahindra Bank is “a non-nationalized private bank so they have to certainly adhere to all RBI regulations, else their banking licence would be ceased.” Banks like Kotak Mahindra are taking extreme precaution “about how their customers are using their system so that they don’t come under any RBI scrutiny in the future,” he elaborated.

Furthermore, the spokesperson noted that, based on his experience, banks “are keeping an eye on everyone’s account and checking the remarks of a transaction.” They are “strictly adhering to the RBI directions and blocking accounts which they feel are being used to trade cryptocurrency,” he added. If customer accounts come “under scrutiny and the bank officers read the crypto keywords in remarks,” the accounts “would definitely get blocked.” Nonetheless, he emphasized:

But as per law, it’s the individual’s choice what to do with his hard earned money and the RBI has not banned cryptocurrency.

What do you think of Kotak Mahindra Bank forcing customers to agree to their anti-crypto policy? Let us know in the comments section below.

Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Twitter, @Vivekmacha, @Desicryptohodlr, Financial Express, and Kotak Mahindra Bank.

Need to calculate your bitcoin holdings? Check our tools section.

Over six months ago, Bitcoin.com launched a dedicated development page for programmers working on the Bitcoin Cash (BCH) network. More recently, our web portal further added the literature “Mastering Bitcoin Cash,” a comprehensive overview of BCH basics and technical operation of the protocol. In order to ring in the New Year, Bitcoin.com has added a dedicated Bitdb node and explorer this week that can query the BCH chain.

Also Read: Nick Szabo: Central Banks May Turn to Cryptocurrency Reserves Over Gold

Query the Bitcoin Cash Blockchain With Bitcoin.com’s Dedicated Bitdb NodeOver the last year, Bitcoin.com has been spreading adoption with our wallet that’s seen more than 3.3 million wallets created and our BCH faucet which has given away free BCH to over 100,000 people. In addition to telling the masses about the best money in the world, Bitcoin.com wants to see Bitcoin Cash infrastructure and development flourish. In order to help the ecosystem, we launched Developer.bitcoin.com last year. The web portal offers programmers a Bitbox SDK, REST, GUI, and Cloud platforms that can help them scale and deploy software on top of the BCH chain. Moreover, this week on Jan. 7, Bitcoin.com launched a dedicated Bitdb node for developers and users interested in parsing the BCH chain for data.

“Bitdb has proven to be a useful part of the Bitcoin Cash ecosystem and today we’re very happy to announce Bitcoin.com’s dedicated BCH Bitdb node,” BCH developer Gabriel Cardona announced on Monday. “We also have a testnet node in preview,” the developer added.

Cardona further stated:   

We’re committed to maintaining this project in the Bitcoin Cash ecosystem. Thanks to Unwriter for a great open source project and thanks to Spend BCH for all the work getting this live.

The Bitdb protocol is an autonomous database that can crawl, index, and query the blockchain. The project was launched by the prolific programmer Unwriter, alongside the multitude of other applications the developer built last year. The open source project allows anyone to parse the chain for all kinds of information and can specifically query data like OP_Return transactions. Bitdb stores every bitcoin cash transaction in a uniformed format allowing a simple MongoDB query that can be useful for all types of ideas. A few developers have already used Unwriter’s Bitdb for certain applications. For instance, the Poster.cash platform uses Unwriter’s Bitdb and Bitsocket, which provided the creator with the ability to develop a “serverless Memo implementation.”

Adding Bitdb to Bitcoin.com’s suite of developer resources helps bolster the Bitcoin Cash network’s infrastructure, alongside all the other tools and introductory guides to certain frameworks. Researchers and developers who plan to get started building and studying the BCH chain can also utilize this handy list of programming resources. The comprehensive catalog includes tools and documentation for Bitbox, the Simple Ledger Protocol (SLP), Wormhole, a token creation web app, Cash-ID, and the Badger Wallet. With Unwriter’s innovative creation Bitdb helping developers parse the chain and build innovative BCH applications, we think hosting a mainnet and testnet Bitdb node on Bitcoin.com is a great addition to our growing development suite.

What do you think about our Bitdb node? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.

Images via Shutterstock, Github, and the Bitcoin.com Bitdb web node and API.

Need to calculate your bitcoin holdings? Check our tools section. 

On Thursday, Bloxroute Labs announced a partnership with the China-based mining operation Rawpool Group and global video communication software firm Yeecall. Both Rawpool and Yeecall plan to be the first cryptocurrency businesses to adopt Bloxroute’s product, dubbed the Blockchain Distribution Network version one.

Also Read: Nick Szabo: Central Banks May Turn to Cryptocurrency Reserves Over Gold

Block Propagation Startup Bloxroute Partners With Mining Operation RawpoolBloxroute is a company that claims it can provide blockchain networks with better efficiency by propagating blocks in a neutral manner. According to the Bloxroute whitepaper, the Blockchain Distribution Network (BDN) cannot favor specific nodes. Bloxroute claims the BDN deployment will enable participating nodes to maintain consensus by remaining provably neutral even when mining thousands of onchain transactions per second. On Jan. 10, the company announced it has partnered with the Chinese organization Rawpool Group and the developers of Yee Chain in order to begin node deployment in February. According to the announcement, the Bloxroute API will support both Ethereum and Bitcoin gateways.

“Rawpool and Yee Chain will be among the first adopters of the Bloxroute BDN version one available for deployment in Q1 and will participate in the first testing of the Bloxroute BDN scheduled for February,” explained Bloxroute Labs. “This test will be followed by a large-scale test in March that will include many miners and users.”

Block Propagation Startup Bloxroute Partners With Mining Operation RawpoolWhen version one of the Bloxroute BDN releases, the product will be a fully operational network with 15 nodes across five continents, the startup detailed. Further, the development team hopes to continue scaling and deploy 30-50 nodes by Q3 2019. The company believes the BDN tests in March will attract more mining pools. Bloxroute claims the company’s product is the “only layer zero scalability solution that solves the scalability problem at its core.” The software’s whitepaper asserts that mass use of the BDN network will provide network participants with the ability to propagate blocks and receive transactions “faster than any other peer.” During the announcement on Thursday, the startup explained that the mining operation Rawpool will see similar results.   

“This partnership is not only a large step towards scaling blockchains but also will allow Rawpool to immediately hear about and send blocks faster,” Bloxroute stated.

Bloxroute’s product will be usable by any single node and does not require majority adoption. The whitepaper claims the protocol that runs underneath the consensus layer could allow for 100 transactions per second (TPS) in contrast to Bitcoin Core’s 3 TPS. The BDN might be best suited for Bitcoin Cash (BCH) miners as Bloxroute does not require any fees or any protocol change except for increasing the block size parameter. Further, last September Rawpool was the largest BCH mining pool, and in an interview at the time, founder and chief executive of Rawpool Group David Li emphasized that he liked testing large blocks. Last year, on Sept. 11, Rawpool also published an objective evaluation of the original topological transaction ordering rule (TTOR) and canonical transaction ordering (CTOR). Yee Chain has also been friendly toward the BCH ecosystem when its Yee Wallet product developers partnered with the Bitcoin Cash Association and airdropped small fractions of BCH to its users.

What do you think about Bloxroute’s partnership with the mining operation Rawpool and Yee Chain? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.

Images credits: Shutterstock, Bloxroute, Rawpool, and Pixabay.

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