Category: Trading

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Fighting crime caused by digital currencies

Categories Blockchain, Cryptocurrency, ICOs, Technology, Trading, Tokens

Fighting crime caused by digital currencies

There is no doubt that the world of cryptocurrency and blockchain is an exciting one, but that doesn’t mean that it is immune to scams and rogue operators.

According to some recent research by an ICO advisory firm, Statis Group, up to 80% of ICOs in 2017 was revealed to be a scam or not all that they claimed to be. In a market where it is easy to get caught up in the excitement of new offerings, there is not much in the way of protection or recourse for investors and speculators.

But this is all set to change thanks to one individual, himself the victim of a scam, Patrick Kim. Using his 10 years of experience in network security and system architecture, he created the Uppsala Foundation. Enlisting the help of ethical hackers, he has created a blockchain-based verification service that is available as a plug into Google Chrome.

During the first half of 2018, it is estimated that around $1.6 billion of digital currency was stolen and it has become clear that criminals make use of the dark web to facilitate large-scale crypto theft-exactly what happened to Kim.

Despite taking precautions to protect his money, a small vulnerability in Ethereum’s own wallet, led to him loosing 7.218Eth after hackers took advantage of a two-minute security breach. He decided to conduct research into the issue and concluded that blockchain could actually be used to fight back against hackers, and it was then that the Sentinel Protocol was born.

Sentinel’s Uppward browser is available on Chrome and will keep track of all visited websites flagging any that seem suspicious. Users can also verify data from social media platforms such as Telegram, as well as wallets and URLs. The portal records all hacking incidents as well as crowdsourcing security news, advice and tips. Users are also able to flag certain sites and a pre-chosen Sentinel will validate whether it is reputable or not.

The Sentinels can then input into a Threat Reputation Database which is totally global and powered by individual experiences. Any data that is fed into the database is rewarded through UPP Points currency in the form of Sentinel Points.

Kim explained:

“There are a lot of ways for people to get hacked, whether it’s through a phishing website, malware infection or password compromise, our aim is to collect and provide these malicious addresses as well as scams, frauds, impersonation and other threat data in an accessible database so that funds won’t disappear. Instead, individuals from the comfort of their browser can double check if the destination address is the intended address and if all is exactly what it seems.”

He continued by stating that “If suspicious, we provide sandboxing technology to test any suspicious files and links via a segregated virtual environment. This can prevent phishing and malware infection in the first place.”

Over the next few months, Sentinel Protocol will team up with a number of cryptocurrency exchanges, wallets, and payment service providers to help stem the use of stolen cryptocurrency.

 

If you have any questions in relation to ICOs, and Malta’s legislation regarding ICOs and blockchain please contact us on [email protected]

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MFSA organised a seminar titled: Due Diligence and Cybersecurity in Relation to DLT

Categories Blockchain, Cryptocurrency, Regulatory, Malta, The Blockchain Island, DLT Regulation, Smart Contracts, Technology, Trading, Regulation, Artificial Intelligence, Tokens, Conference, MFSA, DLT, Privacy

MFSA organised a seminar titled: Due Diligence and Cybersecurity in Relation to DLT

 

Last Tuesday, 11th September, MFSA organised a day seminar for those who work in the field of DLT and Fintech which took place at Corinthia Palace Attard. The seminar titled ‘Due Diligence and Cybersecurity in Relation to DLT’, discussed many challenging issues that the DLT is facing. Many topics were discussed during this seminar, with a particular focus on cybersecurity, hacking and fraud.

E&S Group was represented by its team who gained a better insight into this ever-growing space.

Speakers from around the world, (most notably coming from France, Germany, England and the USA), attended the seminar. They spoke about their concern about hackers’ attacks which are made every day, and also covering the topic of frauds. In fact, in the past few years, many banks have experienced some kind of attack, with the consequence of losing their customers’ money. As a result, this has made the DLT space to look like a high-risk sector. However, everyone working in a network is subjected to an attack. The speakers all agreed that the blockchain technology needs to implement some sort of due diligence on the platform, preventing any hacks and tarnishing the sector further.

Moreover, it was discussed that crypto investors should conduct a due diligence procedure, helping banks and exchanges to identify who is fraudulent or not. Those institutions that do not follow any due diligence procedures are subjected to hackers accessing customers’ wallets, thus resulting in the bankruptcy of the company. In order to prevent such theft in the sector, cryptographers are creating complex algorithms to prevent such wrongdoings. This will help maintain the system to stay safe in combination with constant checks done to make sure no access is given to intruders. Mrs Maria Vello from Cyber Defence Alliance pointed out that that hackers are not anonymous and many criminals who stole money from banks have been caught by police.

VFA Agents in DLT

The event also highlighted the importance of VFA Agents. Accountants, auditors and lawyers who are applying to become a licenced VFA Agents have to go through a rigorous procedure, including, an exam, an interview and the applicable due diligence. The MFSA stated that this procedure is important to eliminate any “bad practises” within the industry. Moreover, the licenced VFA Agents need to conduct the Financial instrument test on their clients, thus presenting all the required information, one of which being the white paper, to the authority.

Malta has become the leading jurisdiction to have a friendly approach on DLT sector. At E&S Group we have helped over 80 ICOs to launch their project in Malta. If you would like to join these companies but require further advice, please contact us at [email protected] or by telephone on +356 2010 3020. We make things happen!

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Another digital exchange announces it is heading to Malta

Categories Blockchain, Cryptocurrency, ICOs, Malta, The Blockchain Island, Technology, Trading, Tokens, Wallet, DLT

Another digital exchange announces it is heading to Malta

In another boost to Malta’s bid to become the ‘blockchain island’, another well-known cryptocurrency exchange is heading to Maltese shores. ZB.com has just made public its intentions to relocate its centre of operations to Malta, following in the footsteps of industry leaders such as Binance and Bitbay.

Co-founder of ZB.com, Jimmy Zhao said:

“Malta is perhaps the world’s most progressive and forward-thinking nation in DLT, crypto and FinTech, and we are very excited to be part of the Blockchain Island.  We are confident we will be able to announce our live operations soon.” He added, “You quickly realize Malta’s commitment to building and supporting the crypto ecosystem.”

Malta’s Parliamentary Secretary for Digital Economy and Innovation, Silvio Schembri said that the recent news is just another example of why Malta is quickly cementing its position as the global hub for blockchain and cryptocurrency service providers. In a tweet regarding the news, Schembri said:

“More blockchain business to Malta. Welcome to the #blockchainIsland… Looking forward for your investment of over 20M in the first 3 years and employing over 150 people.”

Whilst many countries have been reluctant to develop regulations or legislation in favour of the booming industry, Malta has been at the forefront of efforts to create a legal framework that both protects and supports stakeholders. The EU country recently passed three bills including the Virtual Financial Assets Act that is due to be implemented into law by October 1st 2010. This makes them the first country in the world to create such laws and has been a highly attractive incentive for a range of businesses operating in the global market.

ZB.com is a crypto to crypto exchange and it now joins other big names such as OKEx, Binance, Bitay, and DQR in making Malta, the blockchain island, home.

 

If you would like to learn more about Malta’s progressive stance on ICOs and blockchain and what E&S Group are doing please follow this link.

Contact us directly on +356 20103020 or by email at [email protected] to find out more.

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EOS crowned the world’s best digital currency

Categories Blockchain, Cryptocurrency, ICOs, Technology, Trading, Bitcoin, Ethereum, DLT

EOS crowned the world’s best digital currency

EOS has once again been crowned the world’s top cryptocurrency by the Chinese government. The criteria for the award is based on innovation and application rather than market capitalisation. Whilst EOS takes the top spot, Bitcoin, the world’s leading cryptocurrency in terms of trading volume and market cap moved up seven places from June.

The Chinese Centre for Information Industry Development has made public the third edition of the Global Public Chain Technology Evaluation Index which lists dozens of cryptocurrencies in terms of satisfying a range of criteria. EOS has come first for the second consecutive time, despite issues around the platform’s mainnet launch back in June.

Part of the success of EOS has been put down to its scalability as the platform’s proof-of-stake protocol is able to process a large number of transactions in comparison to other leading blockchains.

Similar to the previous edition, Ethereum came in at number two but NEO dropped out of the top three to be replaced by Komodo which last time, had failed to crack the top 10.

The top 10 are as follows;

  1. EOS
  2. Ethereum
  3. Komodo
  4. Nebulas
  5. NEO
  6. Stellar
  7. Lisk
  8. GXChain
  9. Steem
  10. Bitcoin

Whilst Bitcoin has not performed particularly well on the first two CCID reports, it has seen a rise through the rankings following a big shift in the crypto-market. The dominance rate of Bitcoin has increased 40% over the past three months and it now accounts for over 52% of the entire market capitalisation.

EOS and Ethereum have seen big decreases in value over the same few months, with Ether reaching a 14-month low last week, leading to alarm bells ringing in the ICO sector.

The growing market share of Bitcoin means that other digital assets and currencies are destined to rise and fall with it. Whilst it is seen as a good sign if a cryptocurrency does not correlate with Bitcoin, recent price developments show that investors are stopping speculative bets for assets with a proven and demonstrable track record. Founder of Ethereum, Vitalik Buterin said that this will no doubt lead to a new year of ICOs with better protocols and improved business models. He believes that this paradigm, dubbed “Tokens 2.0” could materialise by the beginning of next year.

E&S Group is a leading law firm offering various services with regards to ICOs. Feel free to contact us directly on +356 20103020 or by email at [email protected] to find out how E&S can help you in ‘making things happen’.

For more information click the link.

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CEO of Coinbase plans to manage BTC adoption expectations

Categories Blockchain, Cryptocurrency, ICOs, Technology, Trading

CEO of Coinbase plans to manage BTC adoption expectations

The last few days have been unstable for cryptocurrencies to say the least and in the wake of such devastation, the CEO of Coinbase has warned about premature excitement over Bitcoin adoption.

Whilst many investors are pinning their hopes on widespread adoption helping to stabilise the value of BTC, it may not be wise to do so.

The value of BTC is currently $6400, noting an increase from the weekly low of $5950. As the price of BTC fell, many other altcoins also suffered similar decreases, including Ether which dropped to a low of $250 and LTD which sunk to just $51. It is hoped that upcoming developments such as Microsoft, Starbucks and ICE’s integration of the technology will give a much-needed boost to the market.

But Brian Armstrong, CEO of Coinbase has said that he thinks “We are still quite far away from buying your morning Starbucks with cryptocurrency”, and he is right. Whilst it initially appeared that Starbucks was working in conjunction with ICE and Microsoft to create a BTC payment platform for their products, they recently clarified in a statement that;

“Customers will not be able to pay for Frappuccinos with Bitcoin.”

Armstrong also stated that most cryptocurrencies are only suitable for use in speculative investment and added that only around 10% of traded cryptocurrency is used to make purchases or execute financial transactions.

High levels of concern exist in the industry from those who believe that the bear market will prevail until significant developments are made in terms of regulatory clarity and widespread public adoption. This would also include a higher level of acceptance of Coinbase Commerce on popular websites, and the approval of the impending Bitcoin ETF.

“This technology is going through a series of bubbles and corrections, and each time it does that, it’s at a new plateau. People’s expectations are all over the map, but real-world adoption has been going up.” Armstrong stated.

Whilst widespread adoption of cryptocurrency is important, many industry key figures believe that it is legal certainty and clarification that will provide the best boost for prices, adoption, and popularity.

 

Are you looking for ICO Legal Advice? Click this link to know more, or send us an email on [email protected]

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Malta and the FATF- fighting money laundering and terrorism financing

Categories iGaming, Blockchain, Cryptocurrency, Regulatory, Malta, Technology, Trading, Regulation, Exchanges, DLT

Malta and the FATF- fighting money laundering and terrorism financing

Over the last decade, the island of Malta has firmly established itself as a leading jurisdiction for various sectors such as iGaming, financial services, and now, cryptocurrency and blockchain. This is due in part to its stringent approach to issues surrounding anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism procedures, including its adherence to the EU 4th Anti Money Laundering Directive, as well as being an active member of the international Financial Action Task Force (FATF).

The FATF is an organisation that is tasked with setting the global standards for AML/CTF as well as acting as a guardian of the financial system in terms of financial crime and illicit activities. Every four months, they release a list of non-reputable jurisdictions which are defined as those that have serious deficiencies in their AML/CFT legislation, or who are not cooperative. This list of so-called ‘rogue states’ is meant to guide cooperative countries when it comes to who they should do business with, and who requires more enhanced levels of due diligence and other verification processes.

The most recent list, published in July, includes Democratic People’s Republic of North Korea, Ethiopia, Iran, Pakistan, Serbia, Sri Lanka, Syria, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia and Yemen. Deemed as no-reputable jurisdictions, entities are advised to exercise caution when handling financial businesses with them. Notably, most countries on the list are in the grip of some kind of conflict so it could be that the governmental infrastructure is not available to enforce such regulations in an efficient manner, rather than them simply refusing to cooperate.

Malta’s Financial Intelligence Analysis Unit (FIAU) uses each report as a guide to decide what kinds of businesses or individuals should be able to conduct financial businesses within the country. Malta is also an active member of the intergovernmental FTAF as well as adhering to the EU 4AMLD, meaning it takes a strict approach to due diligence on companies and obliged entities operating in the country.

E&S Group works with a wide range of clientele from every corner of the world, and as such, we undertake all necessary due diligence, enhanced due diligence, and know your customer processes as a standard. We are also able to advise our customers on creating the proper, compliance procedures to ensure that their business and the people that they do business with are in line with national and international AML/CFT requirements. Contact us today at +356 2010 3020 or by email on [email protected]

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Bitbay partners with Neufund to create the first crypto/fiat exchange in Malta

Categories Blockchain, Cryptocurrency, ICOs, Technology, Trading, Cryptocurrency Exchange, Bitcoin, Tokenomics, Tokens, Wallet, Utility Tokens, DLT

Bitbay partners with Neufund to create the first crypto/fiat exchange in Malta

Malta continues to cement its place as a global hub for cryptocurrency and blockchain related technologies.

Berlin-based Neufund and the Polish cryptocurrency exchange Bitbay have teamed up together to create what will be the world’s first cryptocurrency to fiat exchange. The exchange will be based in Malta and will become a member of Neufund continually growing ecosystem of market partners and they also plan to trade equity tokens via Equity Token Offerings. As a result of the partnership with Bitbay, users of the platform will be able to buy, sell, and trade equity tokens with fiat currencies.

$10 trillion by 2020

It is estimated that the security token market will be worth a staggering $10 trillion by 2020 as well as bringing more liquidity to the traditional investments market, including equity instruments.

This most recent development comes soon after the announcement that Neufund has formalised a collaboration with the Malta Stock Exchange and the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, Binance. Bitbay is set to be the first trading partner that gives its users the ability to liquidate their equity tokens against fiat currency.

CEO of Neufund, Zoe Adamovicz commented in a statement on the revolutionary aspect of the collaboration:

“This will be the first crypto secondary market trading tokenized securities against fiat currencies. We are very keen to start the partnership with Bitbay since it will offer clients a really easy way to purchase and sell cryptocurrencies using fiat currency. It appears that Bitbay are all set to accept a wide range of payments and withdrawal options including bank transfers, PayPal and other similar methods so the transactions should be quite smooth. Hopefully, this will start bringing cryptocurrencies to the masses and will really kick off the global revolution with Malta on the frontline of it”.

One of Europe’s leading exchanges

Bitbay is one of Europe’s leading cryptocurrency exchanges and allows tradable fiat pairs such as the Euro, Zloty, and the US Dollar.

“Our partnership with Neufund aims to bring security tokens to BitBay’s everyday operations in a fully compliant and regulated way. We are proud to be on the frontline of implementing equity tokens into 24/7 crypto trading systems,” said CEO of Pinewood (the operator of BitBay) Pawel Sobkow.

Earlier this year, Bitbay announced its relocation to Malta following the passing of three bills that seek to regulate blockchain, crypto, and related industries. Whilst the bills are still at the consultation stage, they are expected to enter into force by October 1st 2018.

E&S Group is a leading law firm offering various services with regards to ICOs. Feel free to contact us directly on +356 20103020 or by email at [email protected] to find out how E&S can help you in ‘making things happen’.

For more information click the link.

 

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London Fintech Week discussed women’s involvement in this space

Categories Economy, Blockchain, Cryptocurrency, ICOs, E&S Group, Technology, Trading, Woman, London FinTech week

London Fintech Week discussed women’s involvement in this space

During London Fintech Week which took place between the 6th and 13th July, brought experts in the blockchain, fintech and crypto industry together to discuss issues about the new fintech technologies.

At the moment, Fintech is surging in popularity. Many financial sectors are embarking on Blockchain based technologies to keep up with this growing industry. Although blockchain is looked at as a field controlled by men, a number of women started to involve themselves in the Blockchain industry. In fact, one of the key panel discussions spoke about, ‘Women in Blockchain’.

Women in Blockchain

Since the blockchain industry is growing at a steady pace, only a small percentage of women work in the sector.  However, a substantial interest has been noticed in women joining the blockchain revolution. In a panel, made up of women involved in blockchain discussed ways how more women need and can be involved in the industry. They also mentioned the need for men in the industry to support women by creating more opportunities for them.

Women are attending many Blockchain and Fintech conferences, participating in hackathons being organised. The main aim of these women is to explore new areas in the sector and networking with possible partners for their company they represent.

At the moment we are seeing a number of women setting up their projects, one woman, in particular, is the co-founder of Neufund Zoe Adamovicz. Moreover, a substantial shift is seen within the fintech sector, with more women working alongside men, while others are known leaders in the industry.

One other point the panel emphasised was that the blockchain industry needs more women to be empowered and engage in this ever-expanding industry. Although the technology and financial industry are dominated by men, women from an integrated part with this dynamic space. Women are also the game changers to this ever-growing industry and should actively participate in the Blockchain revolution!

If you need to know more about our ICO Legal Services offered, please click this link. You can also call us on +356 2010 3020 or by email on [email protected]

 

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Changpeng Zhao explains the three keys to virtual currency success

Categories Blockchain, Cryptocurrency, ICOs, Technology, Trading, Cryptocurrency Exchange, Exchanges

Changpeng Zhao explains the three keys to virtual currency success

Just over one year ago, Changpeng Zhao founded a cryptocurrency exchange that just 365 days later would be the biggest crypto exchange in the world. Getting a coin listed on a leading exchange such as Binance is the holy grail of the crypto world, almost guaranteeing success in the market. But how do exchanges such as his decision which make the cut and which do not? Here are three things Zhao looks for before adding it to the platform.

A winning whitepaper

In order to fully understand a project, you need to look at the whitepaper in detail as well as understand it clearly. Zhao and his team will also put significant work into researching the community, the source code on GitHub, as well as reading community reviews.

A good team

Having a strong team is essential to the success of any project, but Zhao is also looking for a team that has history, ability, and experience within the sector. Whilst it can be difficult to predict what way a project will go, having a well-rounded idea of who is behind it can give a very good indication.

A good number of users

You are not going to get listed on Binance if only 10 people are using your product. What is the use in offering trading pairs if there is no volume or demand? Binance will actually check and monitor the number of users and whilst there is no set benchmark, if the project is a good one and a high number of people are involved, your chances of getting listed are high.

Changpeng also was quick to dispel rumours that he charges to list coins on the platform, stating:

“What we do is we don’t negotiate, and we don’t ask for a price. The project team, when they submit an application, they tell us what they want to pay. And you can say zero, which we will accept. And we have listed coins that have said zero. You have to have a good product, a good service. I think our service is ok. To be honest, it’s not perfect. I really want to improve it. But I think in the industry, we’re kind of good compared to others. But I think the other big thing is your ethical behaviour.”

As well as these three key things, Zhao is also careful to only back legitimate projects. Aware that there is a lot of underhand and dubious things going on in the cryptocurrency space, he wants to retain their position as the most ethical and powerful exchange out there. They are careful about who they partner with because whoever he supports, gets catapulted into a popularity of stratospheric proportions.

 

Interested in ICOs Legislation in Malta? Contact us directly on +356 20103020 or by email at [email protected] to find out more.

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CryptoSouk has launched its Pre-Token Sale – Your Gateway to the Crypto World.

Categories Blockchain, Cryptocurrency, ICOs, Malta, The Blockchain Island, E&S Group, Technology, Trading, Cryptocurrency Exchange, New ICO - Crypto Souk

CryptoSouk has launched its Pre-Token Sale – Your Gateway to the Crypto World.

E&S GROUP IS PLEASED TO ANNOUNCE THAT ITS CLIENT CRYPTOSOUK HAS LAUNCHED ITS PRE-TOKEN SALE.

 

CryptoSouk is dedicated to making digital currency trading accessible, fast and totally secure. Their CryptoSouk platform aims to make digital currency trading accessible to everyone and for traders of every skill level. CryptoSouk will execute quick trading, fair pricing, world-class customer service, endless improvement and limitless creativity. CryptoSouk are in their initial stages to provide their token sale to their clients, launching their token called, Souk.

E&S Group is pleased to be advising and supporting this innovative project, assisting traders to collect their digital assets through the CryptoSouk platform. To learn more about CryptoSouk, please visit their website: https://cryptosouk.io/en/ico

 

Planning an ICO or simply want more information on ICOs, Blockchain or Crypto? Click here to read more about ICOs or contact us on [email protected].

 

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