Launch of cryptographic financial products; the G7 addresses the CBDCs; SEC Commissioners and Foreign Regulators Turn to Crypto; ICO founders plead for tax evasion | Baker

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Launch of cryptographic products in payments, ETFs, DeFi; Bitcoin mining data released

Through Veronica reynolds

This week, a digital asset market announced a partnership with a large multinational technology company specializing in internet and cloud products and services. According to a press release, the partnership will allow consumers to use cryptocurrency-funded virtual debit cards to pay for goods and services using the tech company’s popular digital payment portal.

Last week, the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) approved a new exchange-traded fund (ETF) that provides exposure to “companies of the bitcoin industry revolution,” defined in a related report. to the SEC as entities that “own the majority of their net assets.” in bitcoin … or derive the majority of their income or profits directly from [Bitcoin] mining, loan or transaction. In a related development, the price of bitcoin has reportedly surpassed $ 60,000 for the first time in nearly six months following a report that a bitcoin futures ETF may soon be approved by the SEC.

Abroad, a Swiss-regulated digital asset exchange and bank have introduced a platform that will allow institutional clients to lend bitcoin and ether and earn a return on proof-of-stake protocols. , including Polkadot, Tezos and Cardano. According to reports, this will make the bank the first in the country to provide access to these decentralized financial activities on a fully regulated basis.

According to a recently released report, the location of Bitcoin network mining activity has seen a seismic shift following increased regulation of the mining sector by China, with the United States leading the growth and development of mining operations. According to the report, the “major share of the Bitcoin network’s global hashrate is now in the United States,” followed by Kazakhstan and the Russian Federation. The report says the U.S. global hashrate has risen 16.8% since the end of April, to a total global share of 35.4% in August.

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G7 examines impact of CBDCs in new publications

Through Veronica reynolds

This week, the G7 released the “Statement by G7 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors on Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs) and Digital Payments” and a policy paper titled “Public Policy Principles for the digital currencies of retail central banks (CBDCs) ”. Among other things, the publications deal with “fundamental issues” and “opportunities” associated with CBDCs, including monetary and financial stability; legal and governance frameworks; data confidentiality; competetion; operational resilience and cybersecurity; illicit financing; overflows; energy and environment; innovation; financial inclusion; payments to and from the public sector; cross-border functionality; international Development; and the dependencies that may be encountered in designing a retail CBDC ecosystem. Reports note that “[n]o The G7 authority has yet to take the sovereign decision to issue a CBDC and careful consideration of the potential policy implications will continue. “

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Launch of Blockchain solutions in B2B software; Cobalt and leather supply chains

Through Robert A. Musiala Jr.

Recent press releases have announced the launch of blockchain solutions in various industries to streamline business operations. In a press release, a B2B payments software provider announced that it has integrated blockchain to “unlock new supply chain finance opportunities”, “fuel digital B2B payments”, “streamline … manual processes ”and mitigate the risk of fraud. In another press release, “one of the world’s largest physical commodities trading companies” and a “leading provider of supply chain provenance and emissions tracking services” announced a solution to blockchain aimed at tracking emissions in nickel and cobalt supply chains, with a focus on the electric vehicle industry. A final press release, issued by a major global automaker, announced a pilot program that will leverage “blockchain technology to ensure full transparency within a sustainable leather supply chain” in the manufacturing process automobile.

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SEC Commissioners Tackle Crypto Market Regulation in Mixed Discourse

Through Joanna F. Wasick

Last week at the Texas Blockchain Summit, U.S. Securities and Exchange (SEC) Commissioner Hester Peirce addressed SEC Chairman Gary Gensler’s description of the crypto space as the “Wild West,” who , according to Peirce, “we imagine we were lawless” and where “the gunslinger with the best reflexes and the worst morals wins at the expense of everyone else”. Peirce accepted Gensler’s nomenclature, but pointed out that the West, and by extension the crypto ‘frontier’, was a place for hard workers, idealists and free thinkers – an environment that breeds innovation and industrialism. healthy. Addressing the regulatory environment, among other things, Peirce noted a “conflict between the SEC and the public” over whether there is “clarity as to when crypto assets are securities” and said underlined its proposed “safe harbor” provision as a step towards resolving this conflict. Peirce also posed questions that she said should be at the forefront of regulators’ concerns, including whether they were fighting for investors or “jurisdiction”, whether enforcement action is the right way to bring security. legal clarity to space, whether the value of stablecoins (which Gensler strongly criticized) was overlooked, and whether it made sense to treat some decentralized financial protocols as centralized entities.

During this week’s SEC Speaks event, SEC Commissioner Caroline Crenshaw also commented on crypto regulation. Like Pierce, Crenshaw said regulation should support innovation. However, Crenshaw stressed that such support should not come at the expense of other industries, and she highlighted cases of fraud within the space. Crenshaw said the SEC was clear in terms of direction, and said analysis of regulatory compliance has always been, “first and foremost, the responsibility of the company and its board. “. She criticized Peirce’s idea of ​​refuge, saying it would only delay regulatory decisions and hurt investors in the meantime. Crenshaw stressed the need for transparency and encouraged blockchain companies to meet and work with the SEC to achieve compliance. Peirce and Crenshaw noted that the views expressed in their speeches were personal and not those of the SEC.

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Foreign Regulators Tackle Crypto Advertising, Mining, Ransomware

Through Keith R. Murphy

The Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) and the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC) recently issued a joint notice intended to provide advice to cryptocurrency trading platforms (CTPs) on how Securities regulations and IIROC rules regarding marketing, advertising and the use of social media may apply to them. The advisory was reportedly issued following the discovery by the CSA and IIROC that certain CTP advertising and marketing activities could violate securities rules or raise public interest or investor protection concerns. .

Separately, Canadian officials are reportedly considering a multi-million dollar fine against a company accused of operating a bitcoin mining power plant without notifying the utilities commission, county, or surrounding neighbors. According to a recent report, the company was operating two additional sites for the same purpose and planned three additional sites by the end of the year. The company would try to resolve the issues with the utilities board.

The Australian government recently released a Ransomware Action Plan that addresses the country’s strategic approach to cybercriminals and ransomware. The plan discusses the widespread effects of ransomware and identifies strategies and initiatives to address them, citing three main objectives: prepare and prevent; respond and retrieve; and disrupt and deter. The disruption and deterrence initiatives proposed in the plan include “combating cryptocurrency transactions associated with the proceeds of ransomware crimes.”

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ICO founders advocate for tax evasion, cryptography used in the illegal sale of nuclear data

Through Jordan R. Goldsmith

This week, the US attorney for the Northern District of Texas announced that the founders of an initial cryptocurrency offering had pleaded guilty to tax evasion. According to advocacy documents, the two founders of the company raised around $ 24 million from more than 13,000 investors and then used those funds for personal expenses. The defendants’ guilty plea comes after a civil settlement with the Securities and Exchange Commission, in which the company agreed to pay a fine of $ 8.3 million to resolve allegations it defrauded investors and exploited an exchange of unregistered digital assets. The two men now face up to five years in federal prison.

According to a recent criminal complaint filed with the District Court for the Northern District of West Virginia, a nuclear engineer, who worked for the United States Navy, and his wife were charged with conspiracy to sell restricted design data. from US nuclear power plants underwater to a foreign country in exchange for cryptocurrency. The prosecution alleges that the couple violated the Atomic Energy Act, which prohibits the communication, transmission or disclosure of restricted nuclear data “with the intent to injure the United States or to secure a benefit to any. foreign nation ”, according to the law. The couple were said to have received a total of $ 100,000 in cryptocurrency before being arrested by the FBI and the Naval Criminal Investigative Service in West Virginia.

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