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According to a report, Eric Piscini — a former leader of Global Blockchain and a partner at Deloitte has left the company. Piscini is going to join the blockchain startup, Citizens Reserve in order to transfer supply chain networks to a blockchain.

Blockchain leader

Piscini is the one who helped in building a global blockchain practice. The startup that he is going to join is at its early-stage, and it is currently raising $300 million. This startup is a shared database, which is designed to work on all levels of a supply chain.

New Cryptocurrency — ZERV

A new cryptocurrency, ZERV has been developed within the project, using the ERC20 token. According to a report, the cryptocurrency will be used by the group members for accessing the blockchain — it will allow them to implement virtually instant borderless transactions.

  • The cryptocurrency, ZERV, is also considered as a utility token.
  • It allows users to exchange services within the platforms.
  • This digital currency comprises a third element — it sets it apart from other ECR20 tokens.
  • The reserve assets are intended to fund the token a certain value of $0.01.
  • Reportedly, 100 billion tokens will be issued to the value of $1 billion.

So, let’s enlighten you about the platform — it is based on the public Ethereum blockchain with smart contracts that consist of self-executing code — which could be implemented by using multiple private blockchain solutions. However, the contracts will be limited for a long period of time and it is expected that the transactions of cryptocurrency will be conducted any time soon.

According to Piscini:

“We are building the Ethereum of supply chain… The private blockchain is more for supply chain transactions, and the public blockchain is used for payments. There is a bridge that we created that is kind of our secret sauce.”

Reports also show that 85% of the funds that were involved in the token presale will be utilized in purchasing assets that will sponsor the tokens. Out of the total funds, 30% that were raised after the round gets closed will be issued to the users through a mechanism that is designed to stimulate and encourage the creation of the new supply chain services on its platform. It is expected that the Citizens Reserve will be launched in July 2018, however, Piscini didn’t disclose the names of the related group members, as he said that Citizen Reserve is going to work with three organizations — these organizations are providing software to the defense industry supply chain at this time — in a centralized manner.

The decision of blockchain leader, Piscini, is amid an exodus of top executives from the financial companies and traditional tech to cryptocurrency and blockchain. David Marcus left Facebook and Paypal as he was appointed to the exchange Coinbase – as a board of directors.

The co-founder of Coinbase, Brian Armstrong said, the knowledge of Marcus for both mobile space and payments is the main thing that would help as a guide for the platform to go forward. The CFO of Commonwealth Bank of Australia has also quitted to join Block.one, which is an EOS token developer.

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SEC Official: ‘Dozens’ of Crypto Investigations Are In progress

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on 15th March, Bloomberg BNA reported that Stephanie Avakian (Enforcement Division Co-Director) of US SEC (Securities and Exchange Commission) has confirmed that “dozens” of investigations have been conducted by the agency in the cryptocurrency space.

Press Report

It was reported in February that subpoenas have been sent by SEC to companies, that are suspected of having trouble with the security laws through their contribution in the ICOs (Initial Coin Offerings). The comment of Avakain follows these press reports as she said;

“We are very active, and I would just expect to see more and more.”

cryptocurrency companies

Statement Released by Securities and Exchanges Commission (SEC)

A statement was released by SEC on 7th March, prompting cryptocurrency trading platforms that they are under the control of the SEC as it monitors them and as an outcome, it must register as exchanges. It’s already clear that SEC holds the main responsibility for proposing securities rules, enforcing federal securities laws, regulating the securities industry, and other actions, which includes the electronic securities markets. SEC supervision ended up as three different companies were suspended from trading due to queries related to the cryptocurrency.

What has SEC done against the crypto-related companies?

Over the past few years, the SEC has taken more steps against cryptocurrency companies that it was seeing as flaunting securities laws. Bloomberg also reported that since September 2017, many actions have been taken by the commission against companies.

On 14th March, Mike Lempres (Chief Legal and Risk Officer at Coinbase) has highlighted in a testimony (before Congress) that the major financial regulatory organizations haven’t agreed on the nature of cryptocurrency. In the US, the regulatory framework for cryptocurrencies still remains unclear.

For SEC, it is a security, while the CFTC (Commodity Futures Trading Commission) deliberates tokens as a commodity. If we talk about the IRS (Internal Revenue Service), it considers tokens to be property, while tokens are considered as currency for FinCEN (Financial Crimes Enforcement Network).

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Federal Reserve Governor talks about Crypto-Market Volatility

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According to the Federal Reserve Governor, Lael Brainard, the central bank is examining the intense volatility of cryptocurrencies, especially Bitcoin, however, she doesn’t think that virtual currencies stance a present threat to financial stability of US.

These remarks were made by Brainard on 3rd April, during a speech at Stern School of Business in New York. She alerted investors to be careful about speculative asset classes, like; cryptocurrencies.

Brainard said:

federal reserve

“One area that the Federal Reserve is monitoring is the extreme volatility evidenced by some cryptocurrencies…. For instance, Bitcoin rose over 1,000 percent in 2017 and has fallen sharply in recent months. These markets may raise important investor and consumer protection issues, and some appear especially vulnerable to money-laundering concerns.”

“As in other highly speculative markets, individual investors should be careful to understand the possible pitfalls of these investments and the potential for losses. But it is less clear how the valuations of cryptocurrencies currently could pose a threat to financial stability. Nonetheless, we will continue to study them,” Brainard continued.

Risk Factors

According to Brainard, the perils related to the banking sector and traditional asset classes like bonds and stocks are balanced by the past standards due to the modifications that were introduced after the financial crisis of 2008.

She also said:

“Credit growth is robust, and banks are registering strong profitability relative to their international peers.”

Jerome Powell Views

The opinion of Lael Brainard on cryptocurrencies resounded the thoughts of Jerome Powell, who is the Federal Reserve chairman.

In November 2017, Powell said:

“I have nothing against bitcoin… We generally look at some of the risks of cryptocurrencies associated with money-laundering and those sorts of issues, but we’re not broadly opposed or supportive of alternative currencies.”

Latest comments from the Federal Reserve follow the price swings of bitcoin and other digital currencies, that sustained momentum for few weeks. However, during the past four weeks, the price of bitcoin plunged more than a few times.

Although these inconsistent fluctuations in the price of Bitcoin have scared some investors, cryptocurrency “preachers” still remain bullish, as they say, that the recent slump in the market is momentary, and only the result of “sharp regulatory scrutiny” in major markets such as South Korea.

Bitcoin Prediction

The Former COO of Skype, Michael Jackson said:

“Regulators seem open-minded and are now working to eliminate the risks for consumers…. So, I see no reason why bitcoin shouldn’t fulfil its dream. And if it does, then recent price falls will appear trivial.”

Jackson earlier said that the price of bitcoin could shoot up to $1 million, as he believes that its value as a payment method is irrefutable.

 

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What are The Most Renowned Retailers and Services That Accept Bitcoin

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A number of websites already accept bitcoin as a payment option. So, you are lucky you have them. Now, get ready to shop and spend the bitcoins. If you are confused how to start and where to start. In this article, you’ll read about the websites that are accepting bitcoins.

Overstock

In January 2014, overstock was the first retailer which start accepting bitcoin as the payment option. Overstock partnering up with coinbase, which is the worldwide Bitcoin exchange. The company allows its customers to shop and make payments in bitcoins.

First, if you don’t own any bitcoins, you need to get them from an exchange or friend. Second, you are free to shop at overstock.com by using bitcoins. As the first and foremost retailer, Overstock expand its criteria of accepting bitcoin as the payment option. Third, click the “pay with bitcoin” on the checkout page.

Expedia

Expedia is worldwide online travel booking agencies. Which is accepting bitcoin as a hotel booking payments since June 2014. Same as overstock.com, Expedia associate with coinbase and start booking payments in bitcoin. Moreover, flights, activities and other payments may in the bitcoin.

Foodler

Foodler provides online food services and gets payments in bitcoin. While it was the early adopter of the bitcoin since 2013.

The customer has the option to order food and make payments around 20,000+ Foodler restaurant partners. These restaurants aren’t accepting bitcoin directly. Whereas, Foodler convert bitcoin into USD to pay the restaurant.

Newegg

Electronic retailer giant started accepting bitcoin since 2014. In addition, BitPay is the Newegg’s processing partners for digital currencies. There are few purchases which do not accept the bitcoin as a payment.

  • Gift cards
  • Marketplace subscription
  • Subscription order
  • Pre-orders
  • Premier membership
  • Return shipping labels
  • Will call order

First, you have to select the desired shipping option. Second, follow the payment procedure. Third, review the terms and conditions of the Newegg. Forth, Payment procedure of bitcoin includes;

  • If software wallet is on computer, click the button “pay with bitcoin”
  • If it is on smart phone, kindly scan QR code
  • On the web, you need to click “view address” and link to wallet address

Make an order and send the respected amount. Fifth, after fund transfer, paid invoice will be shown to the customer. And confirmed email will be sent.

Tiger direct

Customers have the option to shop up to 200,000 with bitcoin payments. It is teamed up with coinbase same as Expedia since 2014.

Shopify stores

An online eCommerce platform allows the customers to join and set up their own business just like Etsy or eBay. All 75,000+ merchants accepting bitcoin with the help of BitPay since 2013.

Dish

One of the largest company accepts Bitcoin payment since 2014. A satellite and internet provider network teamed up with coinbase.

 

Goodluck!

 

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BEST VPN FOR DARK WEB

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The Dark Web

The dark web is basically a concealed portion of the world wide web that can be accessed only using TOR or any other anonymous network such as Project Freenet. People use these mediums in order to access services, products, and content that cannot be accessible on the normal web. You can find videos, music, pictures, books and various other illegal items here. A very well-known dark web marketplace that goes by the name of Silk Road, has everything you can think of.

Related: Read more about TOR

Now, when you use TOR it is recommended that you use a VPN and route your traffic through it.  What happens is that your ISP is unable to find out if you are accessing the Dark web and even if your IP address happens to leak due to some security flaw, it is not your actual IP address but of the VPN server you are routing your connection through.

All in all, a VPN is that extra layer of security you need to avoid any feds banging on your door at 4 AM.

However, not all VPN service providers are genuine and could land you in trouble. Here are the safest options you could go for:

NordVPN:

 

 

With NordVPN, you can be assured that your anonymity remains no matter what. It does not keep any logs so there are no chances of any data leakage or exposure online. Along with this, it has a peer-to-peer friendly VPN service and you can use up to 6 devices simultaneously. Bitcoin is accepted here and NordVPN operates from the Panama.

Besides a few glitches in the performance and variations in the speed at peak hours, there aren’t many drawbacks of this.

 

Perfect Privacy:

The headquarters of Perfect Privacy’s servers are located in New Zealand. They ensure that no logs are stored to avoid any risks in the future. Forget data breaches as Perfect Privacy is ready to put its company at stake for your privacy. Also, it doesn’t require any third-party tools, which decreases any chances of issues. It even provides you server-based-Ad and malware filters to ensure you maintain a secure browsing experience.

However, one setback is that it takes quite some time to set it up initially.

 

Torguard:

Similar to a fellow VPN service provider, Torguard also operates from the United States. But they’re known to have privacy as their main aim which means they would even consider relocating if it were ever necessary. Torguard as well does not keep any logs which is essential for safe browsing of the dark web.

Also, Torguard has an impressive amount of servers located worldwide making it a tough competitor.

 

ExpressVPN:

ExpressVPN allows you to conduct any peer-to-peer activities while ensuring that no logs are kept. It’s also known for its fast downloading speed, which makes it so much easier to browse the dark web.

The only drawback is that you can use only two devices at a time and you have to separately log in to each device.

 

IPVanish:

Don’t be alarmed that IPVanish is located in the United States as this does not make it unsafe as a VPN option. Similarly, it accepts Bitcoin as well. No logs are stored and the OpenVPNsecurity protocol along with the 256-bit AES encryption allows you to browse the web without any issues.

A drawback is that only two devices can be used simultaneously.

 

The Choice is Yours:

We’ve outlined the top 5 VPN service providers that include all the specifications for safe and secure web browsing. It is your choice to experiment with whatever that seems suitable for you as the five companies mentioned above have you covered!

Let us know in the comments section below if you try any of these out. Also, check out this list of Darknet marketplaces you can visit with the help of the above-mentioned VPN service providers.

 

Story Credits: vpncomparison.org

Image Credits: vpnguru.com

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Bitcoin Market Cap Hits $52 billion for the First Time Ever

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Bitcoin investors get apprehensive as Bitcoin’s value surpasses $3000, hitting a new record within a week after the split.

According to CoinDesk.com, Bitcoin climbed to $3,360.87 on Saturday and by Sunday, it had settled down to $3,286.87 while pushing bitcoin’s market capitalization past $50 billion for the first time ever. It’s market cap now lies at $52.3 billion at press time.

The reason behind these price jumps is the launch of Bitcoin Cash, which is a new version of the cryptocurrency. While Bitcoin’s price did have a 5% drop during the initial days of the new currency, it rapidly recovered. Previously in June, Bitcoin had hit the $3000 however, it fell 20% soon after.

As expected, market volumes have increased along with the price due to the increase in trade volume within the past couple of days and by the looks of it, Bitcoin is back and better than ever.

 

bitcoin image via atlanticbase.com

rocket image via Science Learning Hub

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