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Iconiq Lab, based in Germany, is a global token sale accelerator and initial coin offering program. According to a recent announcement by Iconiq Lab, it has decided to launch two new branches in the US and Asia. This announcement was made public by Patrick Lowry, CEO of Iconiq Lab. The US branch is expected to be launched in New York in May, while the Singapore branch will be launched in July 2018.with the first batch scheduled to begin in Nov. 2018.

When asked about the reason for that launch, Patrick Lowry stated that due to the terrific success rate of German accelerator program and the unexpected feedback from the target community are the main reasons behind that launch.

accelerator program

Why was Iconic Lab launched?

Reason behind the launch of Iconiq Lab was to compensate the needs of both crypto investors and efforts leading to the completion of their own initial coin offerings. Iconiq Lab also launched a global ico accelerator program which was further made possible through the launch of their own token, the ICNQ Club Membership Token.

Basically the Iconiq Lab refers to a German based initial coin offering program which is also acting as a token sale accelerator program at the moment. Edge of that company is that it funds, develops and accelerates the most promising crypto-startups leading to their own token sale. Their speciality is that they help launch tokens supported by real-world business demands and sustainable solutions.

Financial cooperation with EOS and FinLab

FinLab AG is a public trade based German FinTech company builder. In Nov. 2017 it placed a an investment into Iconiq Lab which no doubt was a minor one but had strategic importance. This mutual cooperation led to the successful launch of an accelerator program on behalf of Iconiq Lab. the result and feedback was quiet amazing as Iconiq Lab received almost 200 applications for the first batch of that program  in late 2017. Due to several reason, it shortlisted the applications and eventually selected just five applicants to enter the program. That program was properly launched in Feb. 2018 in Germany.

These five selected companies are propelling towards their own initial coin offering and are at the moment in the middle of a digital roadshow. These companies are also giving rise to innovative Blockchain solutions.

Iconiq Lab’s mission behind all these efforts is to allow the flow of characterized creativity by using tokens as financial instruments. According to some crypto experts it will also facilitate crypto investors with dependable data in case they are trying to judge new token investment opportunities and their future impact.

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Bitcoin profitability

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Bitcoin profitability

When I do shopping, I like to buy goods at a low rate and save some amount. This is much difficult to attain profit while you are buying or selling something.  In the same way, when you are using bitcoin ATM in exchange as well as in buying of goods.  You can make bitcoin profit… not serious???  Yes, you can make the profit while you are using bitcoin ATM.

Bitcoin ATM industry is few year old but is growing every day. It’s almost more than 500 ATM worldwide. Basically, profit from bitcoin is not easy money. You need some targets for your success. Firstly, make it sure that you are making transactions in legal manners with a required license. Secondly, it is very important to choose the public place. Third, you need some promotion of your machine to your surroundings. Fourth, you have to maintain bank relation for the back end. Five and the most important is to make a good reputation.

Furthermore, ATM charge 5.2 % fee or 6% assume $2k gross profit per location on average. This fee can be varying from place to place. Here is an example of $20k per year means $100 gross profit, which is nothing. On the other hand, in a case of Robocoin, an operator will pay $1 fee. According to Robocoin statistics, 1/3 of all sell bitcoin transactions. Whereas, 2/3 buy operation on average. It is assumed that buy and sell transactions are on an equal scale, but it varies. Actually, not all bitcoin ATMs operation support these two-way transactions. Sometimes there is only buy operation and average buy and sell is $480 and $750. Ironically, operation matrices highly depend on many factors including place, area, country, traffic etc.

Here, we created 3 scenarios for bitcoin ATM by using the calculator. Basically, these are theoretical calculations, which do not need any promotions and marketing process.

Is bitcoin mining profitable?

Scenario no. 1

Skyhook is only one-way transaction operator and the bill acceptor is limited to a capacity of 500 bills. Which makes it the cheapest ATM. On the other hand, it is with limited in operations like does not accept large Euro banknotes. The most important things in place, you have to choose the right place.

For example, cash logics are done by the operator and we don’t have to pay rent. Average transactions are 100 per month and average transaction of $50. After the period of payback of bitcoin ATM which is 4 month, it will bring $235 to the owner every month after the return of investment.

 Scenario no. 2

This scenario includes more than two bitcoin ATM machines. Most of them support two-way transactions process and much solid than the scenario 1.  For example, ATM cost is $6000 and per year transactions are 100 which average transaction is at $150. Calculations show that after 9 months of launching it will reach to its break-even period. Whereas it brings $705 per month to its owner after investment return.

 Scenario no. 3

Robocoin ATMs, the most expensive ATM in the market. These ATMs are fully equipped and also support two-way transactions. ATM cost is $15000 with 150 transactions per month and average transaction size is $300 per month. Because of its function, it also looks like the standard bank if ATM.

Here is some example of different ATMs we find on the internet. Vancouver first Robocoin machine, Bit Access stats, Black Star Pastry Bitcoin ATM, Skyhook Bitcoin ATM in the Philippines, Satoshi points Bitcoin ATM in Bristol, Operators survey, BTCPoint analysis, Two-way BitXatm machines in Switzerland.

Conclusion

If you are going to purchase bitcoin machine don’t expect too much. Make your relations strong and promote your machine.  Above are some example and will support you to make your decision profitable.

GOOD LUCK!

 

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Why Is North Korea So Interested in Bitcoin?

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Bitcoin Interest North Korea:

It was observed in 2016, certain actors that seemed to be North Korean were conducting cyber-crime. Their target being banks and global financial institutions. Although, looking at bitcoin investment North Korea, the country’s reputation as a nation that is entirely cut off from the global economy and also a nation that has a government unit dedicated to carrying out illegal economic tasks. This act was possibly carried out to fund the Pyongyang’s elite especially, with them having complete control of their military forces.

A second wave has already begun as these state-sponsored actors are now seeking to steal bitcoins and other digital currencies. It began in May 2017, three South Korean cryptocurrency exchanges were targeted with the intention of stealing resources. According to observations made previously, these actors mostly target personal accounts of employees at these cryptocurrency exchanges using phishing scams. In particular, the attacks used malware called PEACHPIT.

Buy Bitcoin Online North Korea – Activities Conducted by North Korea Against South Korean Cryptocurrency Exchanges in 2017

 

  • April 22 – A South Korean digital currency exchange, Yapizon, had four wallets stolen.
  • April 26 – The US announces an increased economic sanctions strategy against North Korea. These international sanctions could be the reason behind North Korea’s interest in cryptocurrency.
  • Early May – First spearphishing attempt against South Korea is taken.
  • Late May ­– Second South Korean exchange is targeted.
  • Early June – Increased North Korean activity took place with cryptocurrency service providers in South Korea targeted.
  • Early July – Third South Korean digital currency exchange targeted.

 

The Advantage of Targeting Cryptocurrencies:

If they keep this up and plan to take on an exchange itself, they could be able to control online wallets and much more. From moving cryptocurrencies out of online wallets to sending cryptocurrencies to other wallets and even swapping cryptocurrencies for other ones. Since the digital currency realm is still pretty new, several exchanges might have less secure anti-money laundering security measures which make these exchanges a hot-spot for such attacks.

Conclusion:

As the adaptation of bitcoin and cryptocurrencies have increased within the past few years, various nation states have begun to take notice. While many countries are beginning to open new digital currency exchanges or launch their own cryptocurrency, there are some that use it for criminal activities as well. Currently, North Korea is winning over their cyber spying skills but this isn’t long-term either with the advancing cyber powers.

 

Story Credits: fireeye.com

Image Credits: money.cnn.com

 

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WARNING! Hong Kong Regulator Says ICOs are ‘Downright Fraud’

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Hong Kong securities regulator has once again warned the public about Initial Coin Offering investment. The deputy chief of Honk Kong SFC (Securities and Futures Commission), Julia Leung, repeated the previous concerns of perils related to ICOs, in a speech which took place on Friday.

While emphasizing that the interests of regulators lie in protecting the investment of public first, Leung said:

“While we acknowledge that innovative technologies such as blockchain have the potential to improve efficiency and financial inclusion, that does not entitle anyone to conduct fundraising from the public in violation of securities law.”

initial coin offering

Obscurity for Investors

As Leung is the chair of the SFC’s Fintech Advisory Group, she claimed that it would be difficult for an average investor to decrypt the extreme-technical-content and obscurity of few projects that are in quest of fundraising, as she stated that it was more suitable for proficient investors from VC funds instead. Her remarks then drew the attention to projects that claim to use blockchain technology as a “slogan” to vow high-tech claims without any innovation to fulfil those promises.

Julia Leung also added:

“Many of these fundraisings are dubious, if not downright frauds. The issuers escape the scrutiny of the police or securities regulators because of their cross-border nature and the way the crypto assets are structured to fall outside any regulator’s perimeter.”

Warning Against ICOs

These comments pursue an earlier statement, in which guidelines were provided for ICO issuers that must be followed ahead of fundraising operation. Certain ICOs could be considered as securities as well, according to Leung. Since the scrutiny, the regulator has issued a warning letter to almost seven exchanges along with domestic presence, prompting them not to trade cryptocurrency tokens as it sees them as securities without a license.

The regulator said:

“The SFC will continue to closely monitor ICOs and will not tolerate any violations of the securities laws of Hong Kong.”

Seeing growing public interest, the authorities of Hong Kong launched a “public awareness campaign” at the beginning of this year to enlighten general public about the Initial Coin Offering investment and cryptocurrencies by using, articles, advertisements, and infographics.

In her speech, Leung also pointed out the volatility of bitcoin price and added:

“Many millennials who subscribe to digital tokens in ICOs5 understand that there is no intrinsic value in the tokens but are betting on the rapid rise of the token value in the secondary market.”

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Bitcoin vs Litecoin – Which One is Better?

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The hype of cryptocurrencies has increased dramatically over the past few years. Especially after the introduction of Bitcoin, back in 2009.

Bitcoin is the most popular cryptocurrency. The currency has ruled the crypto world undisputedly for many years. Even now, Bitcoin sits on top of the crypto pile. However, it is not the only king in the jungle anymore. The leading cryptocurrency is now facing a growing competition from other cryptocurrencies, Litecoin being one of the closest rivals of Bitcoin.

In this article, we have discussed the major differences between Bitcoin and Litecoin. Hopefully, you will be able to get a good idea about both the cryptocurrencies after reading this.

Litecoin:

Litecoin is one of the many names that received a lot of positive responses from the market.  It was launched in 2011 by its creator Charles Gee – with the aim of becoming the “silver” to Bitcoin’s “gold”. Like Bitcoin, Litecoin is also generated by mining. The motivation behind its creation was to improve upon Bitcoin.

Bitcoin:

In 2009, Satoshi Nakamoto launched Bitcoin as the world’s first cryptocurrency. It has no central authority and anyone can access it from anywhere. Bitcoins are ‘mined’, using computing power in a global network and are used to buy things electronically.

Bitcoin vs Litecoin

What is The Difference Between Bitcoin and Litecoin?

There isn’t just one, but many differences between Bitcoin and Litecoin. The major differences are as follows:

  • There are more litecoins available in the market, i.e. 84 million than bitcoins as Bitcoin will never exceed the limit of 21 million.
  • Due to the limit of bitcoins available, it is of much higher value as compared to Litecoin.
  • Litecoin has a much faster speed of transaction; only 2.5 minutes, unlike Bitcoin which takes around 10 minutes right now.
  • Both employ different algorithms, Bitcoin uses the longstanding SHA-256 algorithm, unlike Litecoin which makes use of a new algorithm known as Scrypt.
  • Another major difference is that Litecoin is a cheaper option for miners than Bitcoin. The former only requires a normal computer and an internet connection to begin mining, whereas the latter requires maximum computing power which is out-of-reach for an everyday user.
  • Bitcoin is relatively slow in confirming transactions, while Litecoin accepts a higher number of transactions due to its higher volume of blocks.

So, What to Choose – Bitcoin or Litecoin?

We know that both the cryptocurrencies have their own set of pros and cons. They even have several resemblances. No doubt, they are both accepted very positively all across the globe. However, the final choice is yours.

Good Luck!

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What Is Bitcoin Wallet and What Are the Main Types of It?

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What Is Bitcoin Wallet

Bitcoin is a peer to peer currency which does not have any physical form. In other words, it’s a virtual currency. The currency is stored in Bitcoin wallets.

There are several forms of Bitcoin wallets – most common ones being desktop wallets, mobile wallets, online wallets and hardware wallets.

The goal of this article is to provide you with the necessary information about all these forms of wallets. So let’s get started with knowing what is a Bitcoin wallet are and what are the different types of it.

Desktop Wallets:

Desktop wallets are compatible with different desktop applications and each of them offers different features. For example, Hive is an OS X-based wallet which includes app store that connects directly to Bitcoin services.

Another example of desktop wallets is Bitcoin Core which relays transactions on the network and enables you to create a Bitcoin address for sending/receiving virtual currency.

Some desktop wallets are particularly designed to gain enhanced security. Armory is a prime example of such wallets.

Mobile Wallets:

Desktop wallets are handy, but only when you are at home. If you are out on the street, they are of no use. And this is the reason as to why these wallets are falling out of favor.

On the other hand, mobile wallets are more useful as everything regarding your bitcoins is just one tap away.

It doesn’t matter where you are, whether it’s a physical store, park or just a random street, if you have access to the internet, you can access your Bitcoin wallet and make transactions on the go. Some of the common bitcoin mobile wallets are Xapo, Mycelium, and Blockchain.

These wallets keep your bitcoin keys encrypted on the phone and also back it up on a web-based server.

Online Wallets:

Online wallets store user’s private key online and link it to mobile/desktop wallets. One of the biggest advantages of online wallets is that they can be accessed from anywhere regardless of which device you are using.

However, there is one major drawback: If a user fails to implement them correctly, it will put the organization running the website in charge of his private key which eventually takes his bitcoins out of his control. That could be a risky move, especially if you collect a lot of bitcoins.

Some examples of the best Bitcoin wallets online are:

Coinbase:

Coinbase operates worldwide. Users in the United States and Europe can also buy bitcoins through Coinbase exchanges.

learn more about how to buy Bitcoin with Coinsbase.

Circle:

Circle offers the feature to send, receive, store and buy bitcoins.

Strongcoin:

This service offers hybrid wallet which lets the users encrypt their private keys before sending them to its servers.

And Hardware Wallets:

Hardware wallets are dedicated devices that are used to facilitate payment and store private keys. Some examples of these wallets are Trezor Hardware Wallet and Ledger USB Wallets. These wallets are easy to carry in your pocket and can be physically moved from one place to another.

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