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Alhamrani Universal & ShoCard Develop Biometric ATM For Saudi Arabian Market

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Alhamrani Universal the largest ATM provider in Saudi Arabia, has announced a partnership with ShoCard, the blockchain-based identity authentication platform, to develop a biometric ATM prototype that will enable consumers in the region to use their blockchain-based App and faces instead of personal identification numbers to withdraw money from cash points.

The ShoCard powered ATM, which will use five-factor authentication, can communicate across banks and uses the blockchain to confirm an individual’s identity without accessing the bank’s database. The prototype is currently undergoing testing and is likely to be rolled out in production soon.

“The ShoCard solution will solve the issue of card fraud at ATMs that continues to plague banks and consumers. It fits nicely into existing ATM technology, which usually already has a camera installed, and makes the customer experience as seamless as possible. At the same time, it utilizes blockchain technology to protect individuals’ identity while confirming the information that banks need to verify that a withdrawal is legitimate,” said Armin Ebrahimi, Founder and CEO of ShoCard.

The ShoCard solution closes the door to these scams by introducing biometrics as part of a five-factor authentication process that also includes the ShoCard ID, a QR Code, timestamps, session IDs and other certifications methods by which the user was verified, like selfie IDs and more. As banks start to adopt biometric technology for authentication and verification at ATMs across the region, AU’s ATMs will be able to verify all customers irrelevant of their banking partner due to the innovative use of blockchain and biometrics together.

“We’re delighted to be working with ShoCard to develop a blockchain-based biometric ATM that will play a major role in helping to reduce fraud for consumers. Digital transformation is a key pillar of Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 and collaborating with trusted technology partners such as ShoCard allows us to offer solutions that meet ever-growing demands for innovations,” said Mr. Tariq Abdat, CEO of Alhamrani Universal.

ShoCard uses blockchain technology to identify users across different banks, hardware or online services where no device or service is trusted. It allows users and enterprises to establish their identities with one another in a secure and verified way, so that any transaction can be accomplished quickly, seamlessly and with peace of mind.

ShoCard is already working with major international banks and other financial institutions to build a blockchain-based financial ID using the ShoCard Identity Management (IM) Platform with key focus on user privacy and higher levels of security.

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CoinMarketCap Cryptocurrency Benchmark Indices to Launch on NASDAQ and Bloomberg

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Crypto Exchange

CoinMarketCap launching two cryptocurrency benchmark indices on NASDAQ GIDS, Bloomberg Terminals, Thomson Reuters Eikon (Refinitiv), and Börse Stuttgart. These indices will be the most comprehensive ones on the market, covering the Top 200 cryptocurrencies by market capitalization, one including Bitcoin, and one without.

Our cryptocurrency benchmark indices will help users to quickly reference and track the general performance of the cryptocurrency market. Including 200 cryptocurrencies weighted by market capitalization, the headline index CMC Crypto 200 Index (CMC200), which includes Bitcoin, essentially covers more than 90% of the global cryptocurrency market. Another index excluding Bitcoin, CMC Crypto 200 ex BTC Index (CMC200EX), has also been created to track the performance of the market without the influence of Bitcoin, a cryptocurrency dominating ~50% of total market capitalization at the time of writing.

“We are excited to launch and share these indices with the market,” says Brandon Chez, CEO of CoinMarketCap, “These indices will promote greater accessibility to cryptocurrency data in an easier-to-digest format. In partnership with Solactive, our chosen index administrator, we hope these professionally-calculated indices will serve to expand the reach of cryptocurrencies into the larger financial markets.” – Brandon Chez, CEO of CoinMarketCap

At CoinMarketCap, we pioneered the use of the terms “market capitalization” in the cryptocurrency space back in 2013, when we needed to a way to quickly compare other cryptocurrencies to Bitcoin. We also created the term “circulating supply”, inspired by the concept of “public float” in equities. We also popularized “Bitcoin dominance” as a quick indicator of Bitcoin’s market capitalization against the value of all other listed cryptocurrencies. With the indices launching today, we aim to capture these data points in a single, easy-to-use index performance number that can efficiently describe the state of the cryptocurrency market.

The market capitalization for each cryptocurrency calculated as “price multiplied by circulating supply”. The circulating supply metric used by CoinMarketCap accounts for locked, reserved or non-saleable coins or tokens that cannot affect the price of a cryptocurrency, and hence are not factored into a cryptocurrency’s market capitalization.

Solactive AG, the independent German index provider, will calculate and administer the CoinMarketCap indices to exacting standards and strictly adhere to the stated methodology, such as rebalancing the index quarterly accordingly. The company counts among its index-calculating capabilities a Cboe Bitcoin Futures index launched in December 2017. Administering over 3,000 custom indices, Solactive is well-placed to provide and uphold the standards required to launch and maintain these comprehensive, market-wide indices in collaboration with CoinMarketCap. Solactive is fully compliant with the IOSCO Principles for Financial Benchmarks.

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IBM Blockchain is Live and Bank-Issued Stablecoins Are On Their Way

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Six international banks are planning to issue their own stablecoins on IBM’s Stellar-powered money wiring service, IBM and Stellar announced Monday.

Today more than 44 international banks that support payments are on the service, IBM Blockchain World Wire — and several of them have signed letters of intent to issue their own stablecoins, according to Jesse Lund, Vice President of IBM Blockchain, who made the announcement in a keynote at Money 2020 Asia in Singapore alongside Stellar cofounder Jed McCaleb.

The crypto industry’s 2018 bear market resulted in a flood of stablecoin issuances, which seek to keep a constant price in the face of the high volatility of bitcoin and other crypto assets. They include Circle’s USDC, Gemini’s GUSD, and Paxos’ PAX, all of which are U.S. dollar-backed. Last month JPMorgan Chase announced JPM Coin, which it didn’t call a “stablecoin” but effectively functions as a dollar-backed bridge currency for the corporate clients and other banks with which it transacts.

The banks looking to create their own stablecoins include Brazil’s Banco Bradesco, South Korea’s Bank Busan, and the Philippines’ Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation — as well as banks IBM has yet to name whose stablecoins would be backed by the Euro and Indonesian Rupiah. IBM plans to continue expanding the ecosystem of settlement assets, Lund said in an interview with Cheddar Monday.

“We let the market drive the expansion and selection of the network incrementally,” Lund said. “We are really feeling excited that we are on a roll to build something new and revolutionary that’s really going to change the landscape of cross-border payments.”

Many in the cryptocurrency community are critical of fiat-backed stablecoins (as opposed to crypto-backed or algorithmic stablecoins) because the collateral for funds are kept in custodian banks that in theory could be seized by the government at any point; the concept merely borrows from blockchain technology’s distributed ledger capabilities and isn’t truly decentralized. But most people don’t really care about that.

“At the end of the day, centralization is okay for the utility it provides,” said Steve Ehrlich, chief operating officer of the Wall Street Blockchain Alliance.

World Wire aims to replace traditional banking intermediaries that add complexity to cross-border payments and make transactions more expensive, like Ripple. By using Stellar’s XLM token as a settlement instrument for fiat currencies, two companies that agree to a transaction in different fiat currencies can exchange those respective currencies into the XLM token. The transaction would then take place using XLM, or lumens, and be recorded on the blockchain. (World Wire also supports a U.S. dollar-backed stablecoin through a collaboration with Stronghold.) Ultimately, this makes payments faster, cheaper, and safer for the end users as well.

Unlike Ripple, IBM isn’t the issuer of the decided-upon settlement asset. (Ripple issues XRP, the token used to transact over the Ripple network.). Big Blue believes there should be a variety of digital assets to enable cross-border payments and that the network participants should be able to choose and negotiate their asset choice.

And unlike other markets whose central banks use real time gross settlement software with the money center banks of its jurisdictions, wholesale payments in the U.S. are driven more by product, like ACH, than the Federal Reserve.

“If you think that a wholesale coin or digital coupon has the ability to reduce the friction for these types of wholesale transactions, it’s a natural progression to say central banks will want to do that too,” said Pascal Bouvier, managing partner at Middlegame Ventures. “How the market structure evolves is difficult to predict … but it’s very much akin to loyalty coins that airlines use for their own purposes.”

Similarly, Ehrlich said one day “stablecoins will turn into their own various payment networks that almost become economies in their own regard, like loyalty programs.”

In the near term, fiat-backed coins will be the most prevalent. As some explode in market cap, others will recede as it becomes more difficult and costly to support a stablecoin — which requires hiring banks to hold the dollars to back each coin plus intense dedication to regulation and compliance requirements. If issuers don’t see the revenues for the fees associated with it, some sort of fallaway would be expected.

“You can think of all kinds of use cases these digital tokens can be used for — either from a payments perspective with all the clients of a bank or to reward some type of behavior. Again, they’re like digital representations of something that has been satisfied,” Bouvier said.

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Coinbase Pro Market Structure Update

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Coinbase Pro

Coinbase Pro will implement a set of changes to further optimize the market health of our platform. These changes are designed to increase liquidity, enable better price discovery for trades, and to make price movements smoother. This will lead to a more efficient market and increase trading opportunities for all of our customers. The changes include:

  1. New fee structure that is designed to increase liquidity by reducing the delta between maker and taker fees
  2. Updated order maximums designed to help protect customers from large price movements
  3. New order increment (“tick”) sizes aimed at improving market structure
  4. Turning off stop market orders
  5. Adding market order protection points

New Fee Schedule

The calculation for volume tiers will continue to be based off trailing 30 day volume. You can also see your trailing 30 day volume within Pro.

Updated Order Maximums

We periodically review our maximum order size, which is designed to mitigate the impact of large orders on market liquidity. The latest order maximums can be found on our markets summary page.

Updated Tick Sizes

The tick size of a market is the minimum increment between orders. We will be decreasing the tick size on the following 5 books: ETC-USD, ETC-EUR, ETC-GBP, LTC-BTC, ETC-BTC

The latest tick sizes for all products can be found on our markets summary.

Deprecating Stop Market Orders

Coinbase Pro and Prime will no longer support stop market orders. All stop orders must now be submitted as limit orders and include a limit price. All currently open stop market orders will be canceled on Friday, March 22 @ 6:00 pm PDT.

Adding Market Order Protection Points

Coinbase Pro and Prime will introduce a 10% market protection point for all market orders. Market orders that move the price in excess of 10% will stop executing and return a partial fill. For example: a market buy submitted when the last trade price is $4,000 will only fill at price levels below $4,400. Protection points help prevent large orders from causing more than 10% slippage.

Scheduled Downtime

Coinbase Pro will be offline Friday, March 22 @ 6:00 pm PDT to 6:30 pm PDT. Please subscribe to the Coinbase Pro Status Page to receive updates on the market closing and re-openings.

  1. 3/22 @ 6:00 pm PDT — Downtime begins, all open market stop orders cleared
  2. 3/22 @ 6:30 pm PDT — Markets restarted
  3. 3/22 @ 6:30 pm PDT — New fee schedule and market structure rules go into effect
  4. 3/22 @ 6:30 pm PDT — Markets will enter limit-only mode
  5. 3/22 @ 6:30 pm PDT — Normal trading activity will resume per our trading rules.
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The Stellar Development Foundation Appoints Denelle Dixon, Previously Mozilla COO, As Executive Director and CEO

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The Stellar Development Foundation (SDF) today announced that it has named Denelle Dixon as its Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer. Denelle will start on May 1st. Stellar.org’s co-founder and current SDF Executive Director, Jed McCaleb, will move into a role as Chief Architect, where he will focus on the network protocol and Stellar’s adoption strategy.

“We’re thrilled to have Denelle lead the Stellar Development Foundation through its next phase of growth,” said McCaleb. “Denelle’s long experience leading operations and business at Mozilla, as well as her work on the policy side, with advocacy around Open Internet and encryption and privacy, will be indispensable to SDF in the coming years.”

Previously, Dixon served as COO of Mozilla, one of the most successful mission-driven open source organizations. During her tenure at Mozilla, she led the organization’s ongoing fight for Net Neutrality and the global effort to ensure that people can control their personal data. She also pushed Mozilla to understand how to partner with commercial entities while staying true to its core mission of openness, innovation, and opportunity on the web.

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Canadian Securities Regulators Consult on Regulatory Framework for Crypto-asset Trading Platforms

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Canada

The Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) and Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC) today published Joint Canadian Securities Administrators/Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada Consultation Paper 21-402 Proposed Framework for Crypto-Asset Trading Platforms. The consultation paper seeks input from the fintech community, market participants, investors and other stakeholders on how regulatory requirements may be tailored for crypto-asset trading platforms (platforms) operating in Canada.

“This consultation outlines a proposed regulatory framework that provides clarity for platforms, greater market integrity and protection for investors,” said Louis Morisset, CSA Chair and President and CEO of the Autorité des marchés financiers. “Platforms have told us that a tailored regulatory framework is welcome as they seek to build consumer confidence and expand their businesses across Canada and globally.”

“The emergence of digital and crypto assets continues to be a growing area of interest for regulators, investors and marketplaces – and, together, securities regulators are taking steps to deepen our understanding of this area,” added Andrew J. Kriegler, President and CEO, IIROC. “We must adapt to innovation, and provide clarity to the market about how regulatory requirements might best be tailored and applied to these unique business models, while maintaining investor protection.”

Platforms, depending on how they operate and the crypto assets they make available for trading, may be subject to securities and/or derivatives regulation. Depending on their structure, they may also introduce novel features that create risks to investors and Canada’s capital markets that may not be fully addressed by the existing regulatory framework. Where securities legislation applies to platforms, the CSA and IIROC are considering a tailored regulatory framework to address these novel features and risks.

The consultation paper seeks input on a number of areas that will assist in determining appropriate requirements for platforms. These include how to address custody and verification of assets, price determination, market surveillance, systems and business continuity planning, conflicts of interest, crypto-asset insurance, and clearing and settlement. The CSA and IIROC continue to engage with international regulators about their approach to platforms, and welcome input on a variety of regulatory approaches that exist in this area.

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The World’s First Full-Stack Cryptocurrency Ecosystem, to Launch on Nasdaq Market Technology

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Nasdaq Inc. and Bcause LLC, creator of the world’s first full-stack cryptocurrency ecosystem, today announced that Bcause’s markets will operate on Nasdaq’s matching engine, clearing and market surveillance technology via the Nasdaq Financial Framework platform. The technology is expected to go live in 1H 2019 with the launch of the new Bcause spot cryptocurrency market. In addition, Bcause has filed with the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission to become a designated contract market (DCM) and to establish a derivatives clearing organization (DCO).The full line of Bcause market offerings will soon operate on the most widely used market infrastructure technology in the world.

Once derivatives trading and clearing officially commence, Bcause will be the only venue to serve as a one-stop shop for all parts of the digital currency value chain: from the state-of-the-art digital mining facility launched in February 2018, to spot trading for digital assets, to a futures market and derivatives clearinghouse which are pending regulatory approval. The surveillance technology powered by Nasdaq is designed to ensure that surveillance protocols fit the needs of a crypto marketplace. This will help Bcause monitor its markets for manipulative activities, among other misconduct, thereby creating a safer spot and derivatives market for all participants.

“We have tremendous respect for the Nasdaq brand and are honored that we can deploy these robust, tried-and-tested platforms – customized to our unique markets – as the foundation of our technology,” said Fred Grede, CEO, Bcause. “I fully expect that our markets will attract a broad range of users, from those who are already quite active in the financial markets and familiar with Nasdaq technology, to a new breed of investors wanting to participate in the growing cryptocurrency marketplace.”

“Bcause has methodically built a unique ecosystem that gives investors, partners and market players a holistic experience in tapping the cryptocurrency market and value chain,” said Paul McKeown, SVP and Head of Marketplace Operators & New Markets, Market Technology, Nasdaq. “By leveraging the Nasdaq Financial Framework, Bcause will have the scalability and modular functionality to introduce new micro-services and expand its business offerings to meet industry demands and the evolution of the digital assets economy.”

Nasdaq’s market technology powers more than 250 of the world’s market infrastructure organizations and market participants, including broker-dealers, exchanges, clearinghouses, central securities depositories and regulators, in over 50 countries with end-to-end, mission-critical technology solutions.

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Koi Trading Unveils AML Compliance-as-a-Service Using IdentityMind Digital Identities Platform

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Koi Trading, an innovative OTC trading desk that provides private, efficient, and compliant cryptocurrency liquidity to counterparties around the world, today announced a partnership with IdentityMind, Digital Identities You Can Trust, to provide Anti-Money Laundering (AML) compliance-as-a-service to money services businesses globally under the brand Koi Compliance.

Koi Compliance offers the first plug-and-play AML compliance solution that supports digital currency. Koi Compliance will pair their legal expertise and compliance analysts with IdentityMind’s platform that already supports over 35 digital currency exchanges worldwide. This enables companies to focus on running their business, while Koi Compliance leverages industry best practices to perform the legally required Know Your Customer (KYC), transaction monitoring, sanctions screening, recordkeeping and regulatory reporting through IdentityMind.

“We’re excited to work with an innovative company like Koi Trading,” said Kieran Sherlock CTO, IdentityMind. “They have created a new way for more entrants into the digital currency space to be compliant from day one, and effectively serve their customers across different markets and geographies while minimizing their regulatory risk.”

“When we first set out to help companies with compliance, we immediately chose IdentityMind as our primary platform,” said Harry Zhou, General Counsel and Chief Compliance Officer for Koi Trading. “IdentityMind’s immense experience in digital currency and their risk-based AML solutions enable Koi Compliance to provide the best technology-driven digital currency AML compliance services for exchanges, OTC desks and stablecoin projects that face rapidly evolving regulatory landscapes around the world.”

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PrimeXBT: Margin Trading Is the Best Tool to Profit During a Sideways Market

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Margin Trading

New research shows that Bitcoin has entered a phase of unprecedented stability, after being demonized as one of the most volatile assets the world has even witnessed. But as volatility dries up and price stabilizes, traders become bored due to the lack of movement in price charts, and more importantly, the lack of profit able to be extracted from the rise and fall of cryptocurrency prices.

The only answer to boredom during a sideways trending market and the only tool that allows traders to remain profitable amidst increasingly tightening trading ranges is margin trading. And no platform offers a better margin trading experience for crypto traders than PrimeXBT.

Margin Trading Is the Solution to Struggling With Profit In Sideways Market

During the 2017 cryptocurrency bull run, investors simply took a buy and HODL strategy, and became extremely profitable as the price of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies skyrocketed.

Throughout 2018, traders were able to short-sell Bitcoin at key resistance levels and generate substantial profit off the multi-thousand-dollar price peaks and troughs.

Now, in 2019, as the market slowly decides which direction it eventually wants to take – more decline or a return to bullish price momentum – the market is experiencing sideways price action, which is the worst environment for traders in general.

With no clear direction chosen, traders often sit on the sidelines until a trend emerges, leaving any opportunity for profits on the table. However, with margin trading, even the smallest price movements can lead to enormous profits.

How Margin Trading on Prime XBT Works

Margin trading allows traders to open positions much larger than their initial capital allocation. PrimeXBT offers the highest level of leverage at 100x across all major cryptocurrencies offered on the platform.

With 100x leverage, a 10 BTC buy order will function as if the trader’s capital was worth 1000 BTC. If the price of Bitcoin increases by 25%, the trader will have generated 250 BTC in profit by using leverage, whereas without leverage the profit would be only 2.5 BTC.

Positions with leverage can be opened as a “short” or a “long,” providing traders with the ability to profit off of both falling and rising prices. Margin trading can help traders generate significant profits off even the smallest price movements. Margin trading, however, can be risky if a trader doesn’t understand how trading with leverage works.

PrimeXBT: Minimizing Margin Trading Risk Using Advanced Order Types

PrimeXBT offers many advantages over other margin trading platforms, but the most important of which is the range of advanced order types found on the exchange. Not only can these advanced order types help to increase a trader’s profitability by ensuring the best entry prices, but by using specific order parameters to exit a position can help to protect capital and ensure a trader’s profitability.

In addition to more commonly found order types such as Market, Limited, and Stop orders, PrimeXBT also offers a OCO (One Order Cancels the Other) order type for advanced strategies, and allows traders to set stop loss and take profit prices to both new and existing orders across all order types.

These important stop loss and take profit prices can help a trader to protect their capital should the market go in the opposite direction of an open order, or can help traders lock in profits before a pullback or retrace occurs.

These optional order parameters can also provide traders with peace of mind, as they don’t have to closely monitor or babysit positions – the PrimeXBT platform will do it for them.

By being intelligent with stop loss and take profit setups, traders can minimize nearly all risk associated with margin trading.

Taking Advantage of PrimeXBT’s Customization Features For Even More Profit

PrimeXBT offers a variety of helpful widgets that’ll improve a trader’s arsenal. Some widgets are designed to provide easy access to the most helpful tools built directly into PrimeXBT, while others offer traders an edge.

The included advanced charting capabilities can arm traders with valuable knowledge on key resistance or critical support zones to help decide where to set stop losses or take profit. Chart analysis can also help traders prepare for the market’s next move, by discovering patterns in price movements, and can even help traders plan entry points for their positions.

The platform offers customization features that’ll appeal to any trader at any level: from novice to intermediate, to professional and everybody in between.

PrimeXBT’s Industry Best 4-Level Referral Program

No information about PrimeXBT and its ability to generate revenue for its traders is complete without mentioning the platform’s four-level referral program. PrimeXBT’s referral program can help a trader generate substantial revenue without ever making a single trade.

Users that refer another user will not only generate earnings off the referred user’s trading fees, but any users the referrer refers, up to four levels deep.

The more an individual shares their referral link, either through their own personal network or via social media, the more opportunity for earnings exists.

Conclusion: Traders Can Improve Profitability with PrimeXBT

In today’s cryptocurrency market, the conditions are more confusing than ever, and more traders are opting to sit on the sidelines and wait for volatility to return in order to generate profits. But PrimeXBT proves there’s no need to wait, and significant profits can be produced with the right trading tools and smart trading strategy.

By first understanding margin trading and implementing the use of PrimeXBT’s industry-best 100x leverage, and by intelligently using the platform’s advanced charting software to best utilize the variety of order types offered by the exchange, traders can discover a whole new world of profit-generation.

PrimeXBT’s sign up takes under a minute and requires no KYC. Given the profits traders are already turning, and its attractive four-level referral program, it’s no surprise that PrimeXBT has become the most exciting project in the entire crypto landscape, and has the entire industry buzzing over its features not found elsewhere in the space.

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Malta Financial Services Authority Appoints Partner to Help Cryptocurrency Asset Checks

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Malta Digital Exchange

The Malta Financial Services Authority has appointed an American company to help it check crypto currency assets.

The authority is currently going through procedures for the approval of cryptocurrency agents – known as virtual financial agents – at least 29 of which have already applied for licences. Once these have been approved, expected by the end of this month, the VFA agents are expected to submit applications for operators like exchanges, wallets and initial coin offerings.

While the VFA agents are expected to do the due diligence on the individuals and entities behind these operators, the MFSA will still require tracking of the assets that flow through them – which is where CipherTrace will come in.

CipherTrace was founded in 2015 by Silicon Valley entrepreneurs and was initially funded by the US Department of Homeland Security Science and Technology and government agency Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency. Its solution was described as being able to gauge and potential risk exposure of businesses including cryptocurrency exchanges, collective investment schemes and initial coin offerings.

“Ciphertrace Compliance Monitoring will provide the MFSA with powerful oversight tools to automate regulatory processes and audit the risk management of virtual asset businesses licensed in Malta,” CEO Joseph Cuschieri said, noting that the MFSA was “strongly aware” of the money laundering and financing of terrorism risks associated with entities operating in this sphere.

The system can be used at both pre- and post-authorisation stages, and uses data encompassing exchanges, addresses, wallets and other entities, profiling everything from criminal addresses and dark markets, to gambling services and high-yield investment products.

The Times of Malta recently reported that the cryptocurrency operators waiting in the winds were champing at the bit as banks were politely declining their business, saying it was outside their “risk appetite”.

Sources said banks were not distinguishing between cryptocurrency and blockchain, even though the two were not always linked.

Parliamentary Secretary for Financial Services Silvio Schembri told the Times of Malta that he was holding talks with different banks and other stakeholders “to have a better understanding of the industry”.

CipherTrace CEO Dave Jevans said that banks often find themselves turning away valuable customers in this lucrative sector, merely because of lack of insight about which businesses to trust as corporate customers.

Applications have been steadily trickling in to the MFSA since the end of November for registration as VFA Agents under the Virtual Financial Assets Act.

The MFSA had told the Times of Malta that it was aiming to issue the first licences within the first quarter.

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Dubai’s Emaar Reveals Plan to Launch Digital Currency

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Dubai

Dubai-based Emaar Group has announced plans to leverage blockchain technology to offer the Emaar community token for customers and partners by the end of this year.

The Emaar community token will allow the company’s customers and stakeholders to reap the value of a full referral and loyalty system across the entire group, opening the Emaar experience potentially to billions of internet users.

This will be among the first referral and loyalty tokens in the world giving access to an existing operational ecosystem of close to $10 billion, and an initial coin offering in Europe (ICO) will be considered within 12 months of the internal operational launch of the platform, the statement said.

Swiss-based Lykke is leading the technology build of Emaar’s community token based on the Ethereum blockchain and the ERC20 token framework.

The token will be transferable across the entire global Emaar ecosystem, including real estate, malls, hospitality, entertainment, facilities management and online shopping.

Mohamed Alabbar, chairman of Emaar Properties, said: “We continuously strive to expand our reach, strengthen our growth and extend the Emaar experience. We have embraced the digital world even as we continue to build the most advanced and innovative physical structures and we use both to delight and benefit our customers and stakeholders globally. The Emaar community token marks a significant leap in our digital transformation journey.”

Richard Olsen, founder and CEO of Lykke, added: “We have developed cutting edge technology infrastructure with mass-market usability to support our core belief that all mobile and internet users should be able to participate in economic activity, regardless of size of contribution. We are thrilled to leverage our experience and expertise to support Emaar’s mission to bring value and utility to millions of users globally.”

Emaar grew revenues by 37 percent in 2018 to $7 billion and its brand value by 39 percent to $2.7 billion, placing it among the highest tier brands in the world.

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