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November 08,2023

Ripple Expands Its Global Influence As XRP Surges&nbsp

Ripple, the cryptocurrency-based network for money transfers and payments introduced in 2012, will reportedly collaborate with payments fintech Onafriq to extend remittance capabilities throughout Africa and connect with several Gulf nations, the United Kingdom, and Australia.

Ever since the infamous lawsuit was filed against Ripple back in 2020, the company has gradually gained recognition within the global cryptocurrency community for its continued defiance of the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), which is often seen as overbearing and reactionary.

Going global

At the annual Swell conference in Dubai, three novel blockchain-driven payment routes were unveiled, connecting Onafriq users in Africa with customers of PayAngel in the UK, Pyypl in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), and Zazi Transfer in Australia.

Ripple President Monica Long expressed her enthusiasm at this development, highlighting the prominent role Onafriq has in the African payment landscape where it has provided over 400 million mobile wallets to date. Monica believes that this will greatly help Ripple expand across 90% of foreign exchange markets.

Concurrently, the value of XRP surged this week following approval being granted to the token by the Dubai Financial Services Authority as well as Ripple continually being involved in a central bank digital currency (CBDC) initiative with the National Bank of Georgia (NBG).

Slowly gaining momentum

Ripple has unveiled various product enhancements and licensing updates thus far, with a keen focus on facilitating payments between enterprises and small businesses. The company has been steadily acquiring licenses all over the world, including money transmitter licenses in the United States, an institutional payments license in Singapore, and has recently filed for licenses in the United Kingdom and the European Union as well.

Earlier this year, Ripple won a partial victory in its legal battle with the Securities and Exchange Commission, thanks to a court decision that provided some regulatory clarity for the cryptocurrency industry.

The SEC, on the other hand, will not go down without a fight, as both the agency and Ripple have until November 9th to collectively present a briefing schedule with solutions to the charges levied against Ripple for its alleged XRP sales to institutional investors.

November 07,2023

Ark Invest CEO Expresses Support For Bitcoin, Claims It Is Better Than Gold

Cathie Wood has stated that she views Bitcoin (BTC) as a reliable hedge against inflation and deflation amid volatile financial markets. She favors BTC over gold, citing its digital gold status, transparency, and potential for long-term profit. Her company ARK Invest, of which she is also the CEO, supports the idea of digital currencies as safe havens during market turbulence.

TradFi cannot keep up

The CEO emphasized the unique features that Bitcoin has, contrasting them with the opacity of traditional banks. She noted that centralized traditional financial institutions (TradFi) often face deposit outflows and would therefore usually sell securities to cover losses.

She also highlighted the historical performance that Bitcoin has experienced over the years compared to the United States stock index and argued for its security as a long-term investment. Wood emphasized the risks of centralized authorities and TradFi which led to her acknowledging the appeal of a decentralized currency like Bitcoin alongside its potential as a store of value.

Bitcoin seems to be the answer

According to Cathie, Bitcoin is a superior choice for a decade-long investment with substantial profit potential, particularly among younger generations. The finance veteran firmly believes that Bitcoin offers some much needed stability and resilience, thanks to the transparency of blockchain technology as well as the hedging capabilities against inflation and deflation that BTC provides.

Wood also expressed her optimism about the intersection of Bitcoin and artificial intelligence (AI) after hinting at the transformative potential in the dynamic synergy between AI and crypto, highlighting the potential and beneficial effects the technologies hold for various industries as well as the broader economic landscape.

November 07,2023

Cardano And Polkadot Will Collaborate On Implementing Partner Chains

Cardano, the popular Layer 1 blockchain developed by former Ethereum co-founder Charles Hoskinson, reportedly intends to leverage the foundational structure of Polkadot, a rival Layer 1 blockchain created by fellow Ethereum co-founder Gavin Wood. Cardano envisions a global network of interconnected blockchains through its partner chain concept.

Cardano looking to improve

Cardano will be adopting a strategy involving the utilization of the Substrate framework provided by Polkadot. Through it, Cardano hopes to implement its upcoming partner chain initiative, as announced by Input Output Global (IOG), the developers behind Cardano, on November 3rd.

Following the announcement, the ADA token saw a 2.2% increase, reaching its highest level since July of this year, while the DOT token remained relatively stable, aligning with BTC and ETH, according to CoinGecko. 

Introducing partner chains

The implementation of partner chains is a novel concept that is poised to transform the manner in which new blockchains are launched and managed by amalgamating modular blockchain technology with the proven security, liquidity, and dependability of the Cardano platform.

Moreover, the partner chain model facilitates seamless interactions among independent chains. To streamline this process, the modular structure and flexible design provided by Substrate render it suitable for various chain configurations, a fact which was the basis for the Cardano and Polkadot partnership.

Through this move, Cardano will no longer be a solitary blockchain framework, as instead it shall transition to a network of numerous chains, each possessing distinct strengths and capabilities. Hoskinson is hopeful that this will also help the platform compete with others trying to become the ultimate altcoin, such as Solana, Polygon, and Ethereum.

November 06,2023

Render Network Incentive Program Announced Alongside Shift To Solana

Render Network (RNDR) has chosen to migrate to the Solana (SOL) blockchain, enhancing both scalability and speed as well as crucial factors in artificial intelligence and cryptocurrency operations. RNDR, valued at $864 million as of this time, is rapidly gaining attention for its innovations in the AI and crypto sectors.

Innovation is key

The move to Solana showcases the overall commitment Render Network has to cutting-edge technology, providing scalability and resilience for its operations alongside improved services for its users. This transition exemplifies how RNDR has adopted a forward-thinking approach while simultaneously highlighting its dedication to innovation.

As such, Render Network is launching a large-scale incentive program for node maintainers to strengthen its network. The program encourages GPU users to integrate RNDR software, synchronize nodes, and share computational capacity, particularly for AI and ML research.

An exciting time

Ryan Shea, an advisor to the Render Foundation, expressed excitement about welcoming new node operators and powering AI, ML, and GPU-intensive compute needs. Thus far, Render Network has allocated 1.14 million RNDR tokens, currently valued at $2.67 million, for the incentive program, demonstrating its commitment to network expansion. 300,000 RNDR tokens will also be distributed in the coming year, ensuring sustained engagement with node operators.

In summary, both the shift to Solana and the incentive program helps position RNDR as a significant player in the crypto and AI community going forward. In turn, Solana will receive a reputable blockchain network powered by crypto, one which helps individuals provide unused GPU power to assist projects in successfully rendering motion graphics and other visual effects in exchange for RNDR tokens.

November 06,2023

Hong Kong Considers Accepting Spot ETFs On Route To Becoming A Global Hub

The Hong Kong SFC (Securities and Futures Commission), known for its strict oversight of traditional financial markets, is reportedly considering adopting a more progressive approach after exploring the emerging trend of spot crypto ETFs (Exchange Traded Funds). This move comes as regulators work on establishing an Asia-Pacific digital-asset hub while also dealing with the fallout arising via the JPEX crisis.

A growing demand

The demand for spot crypto ETFs has undoubtedly surged, with several industry giants like BlackRock and Grayscale getting involved. SFC CEO Julia Leung mentioned that the commission is contemplating retail investor participation in spot crypto ETFs pending regulatory approval. She emphasized their willingness to embrace innovative technology that enhances efficiency and customer experience while ensuring that new risks are consistently addressed.

The SFC initially restricted access to crypto spot ETFs for retail investors but later expanded access to a broader range of investors who meet certain criteria. They also introduced a specialized regulatory framework for virtual assets, aiming to balance business incentives with investor protection, following a significant fraud incident involving an unauthorized crypto exchange known as JPEX.

Slow and steady

In other related news, the Hong Kong Monetary Authority is exploring the provision of guidance for institutions offering digital asset custodial services. In Hong Kong, while futures-based crypto ETFs are allowed, acceptance has been slow, with only a few listed ETFs as of this time.

It is worth mentioning that individual investors can trade cryptocurrencies on licensed exchanges in compliance with digital asset regulations. However, legal restrictions on stablecoins are expected to be introduced between 2023 and 2024.

Given recent market developments and concerns about investor protection, Hong Kong authorities are working to enhance transparency in the processing of virtual asset exchange licenses. In any case, the popularity of spot ETFs in the market remains uncertain, but various experts believe that the future is bright nonetheless.

November 06,2023

Crypto Fundraising October 31 - November 6

On behalf of the Web3 community, we would like to extend our warmest congratulations to the companies that announced their success in fundraising between 30th October and 5th November 2023. We are thrilled to see such tremendous support from all involved. Well done! 

Surf Protocol raised $3M - Permissionless derivative exchange, enabling trading and listing of over 10,000+ assets. The raised capital will be utilized to develop the first permissionless perpetual decentralized exchange, set to be launched on Base.

Vaas raised $1.98M - Founded in Florianopolis by the same trio that founded Decora, a 3D decoration startup, the company focuses on transactions related to cryptocurrencies, but it is also preparing to combat Pix-related scams.

Anapaya Systems raised $9.31M - Anapaya seeks to ensure the sustainability and security of internet infrastructures through SCION. In particular, Anapaya Systems will expand the SCION network for Sui.

Quantum Blockchain Technologies raised $2.4M - Quantum Blockchain Technologies investment programme is focused on selecting the most innovative and out-of-the-box start-ups in the Blockchain and cryptocurrencies sector.

Kana Labs raised $2M - Kana Labs has developed a Web3 Middleware toolkit, which includes aggregated bridges and multiple liquidity sources both EVM and non-EVM blockchain networks.

Waterfall Protocol raised $2M - ByteTrade conducted an extensive six-month due diligence process that successfully tested EMV-compatible DApps and assessments.

Modulus Labs raised $6.3M - Modulus, in particular, will harness ZK-proofs &mdash specifically zkML &mdash to offer users assurance that AI queries remain unaltered or tampered with, thereby paving the way for a broader range of web3 applications to incorporate AI.

Topos raised $5M - This latest funding round was purposefully constructed to bring key VCs and industry leaders on board with direct experience in building global standards, scaling ubiquitous products to massive market share.

Intract raised $3M - Intract is a Web3 marketing community, that provides all campaigns with user attribution one dashboard, cross-platform community analytics, Data-driven Web3 user acquisition and so on.

INTMAX raised $4.88M - INTMAX's stateless zkRollup protocol is garnering attention as an innovative solution that addresses the issues of high transaction fees, delays, interoperability challenges.

Trips raised $2.5M - The company provides creators with the ability to establish their copyright's initial digital provenance on-chain, while enabling them to turn creative assets into financial assets.


November 05,2023

Almost $600K Stolen Due To Fake Ledger Live Application

Nearly $600,000 worth of Bitcoin (BTC) was stolen after many individuals downloaded a fraudulent Ledger Live application via the Microsoft App Store, as discovered by cryptocurrency investigator ZachXBT. In a subsequent update, ZachXBT mentioned that while Microsoft had successfully removed the app, the damage had been done.

What went down

The fake app, named Ledger Live Web3, was successfully identified on November 5th, however it was too late as countless users had already used the application since they believed they were obtaining Ledger Live, an authentic graphical interface for Ledger hardware wallets for offline cryptocurrency storage.

The scammer received the aforementioned sum through 38 transactions via the wallet address bc1qg05gw43elzqxqnll8vs8x47ukkhudwyncxy64q, according to Approximately $115,200 has been withdrawn through the wallet of the scammer through two transactions, leaving them with $473,800 or 13.5 BTC.

The first payment directed to the wallet address was made on October 24th, totaling $5,210. Prior to this, the wallet remained inactive. The majority of these transactions also occurred after November 2nd, with the largest transfer amounting to $81,200 on November 4th.

Another day, another scam

Alarmingly, it was revealed that the deceptive application had already appeared on the store as early as October 19th, at which point Microsoft users could download and use it. ZachXBT stated that they received two messages by victims on November 4th and argued that Microsoft should be held accountable for not conducting due diligence and allowing the fake application to be featured in its app store to begin with.

To make matters worse, this is not the first instance of a bogus Ledger Live application infiltrating Microsoft. In fact, Ledger has a support account on X (formerly Twitter) which alerted its users about a fake app bearing the Ledger name on no less than two separate occasions in both December 2022 and March 2023. As of this time, Ledger has not commented on the scam specifically but has consistently advised users that the only secure source for downloading Ledger Live is their website,

November 04,2023

Delays At Major Banks Reported Amongst Massive Unrealized Losses

According to Downdetector, a network monitoring app, widespread problems at several major banks in the United States have been reported in the last 24 hours, with many financial institutions currently dealing with an influx of complaints about account balances and direct deposits.

Understanding what went wrong

Customers at many TradFi (Traditional Finance) institutions like JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, US Bank, and Wells Fargo have all reported that funds which should have arrived in their accounts have not come through.

While individual bank statements have been issued, the Federal Reserve has stated that a processing issue at a national network designed for processing ACH (Automated Clearing House) transactions caused the problem.

The Federal Reserve Banks and the Electronic Payment Network manage the ACH system, which is a critical component of the US banking system. It facilitates the transfer of capital between banks and financial institutions, as well as the electronic deposit of wages into the bank accounts of employees. Although the Fed believes the problem has been resolved, there appear to be ongoing delays.

A TradFi disaster

JPMorgan Chase in particular has recently disclosed substantial losses on its securities, which have come to light in a fresh report concerning the overall financial situation of the company. The banking giant finds itself burdened with approximately $40 billion in bond losses that have not yet been realized as of Q3 of this year, marking a 20% increase compared to the previous quarter. These updated figures were discovered in a footnote within the third-quarter financial supplement and exceeded the anticipated loss of $34 billion.

Elsewhere, Bank of America has also revealed via a new quarterly report that it currently holds a total of $131.6 billion in unrealized losses. Although Wells Fargo and Citigroup have released their third-quarter earnings, they have not disclosed the most recent statistics regarding their unrealized losses. In the second quarter of this year, Wells Fargo also reported $40 billion in unrealized losses in the bond market, while Citigroup showed unrealized losses of $25 billion.

Bad to worse

The risks associated with unrealized losses came into prominence earlier this year following the sudden collapse of Silicon Valley Bank in March, which was triggered by an announcement that it had incurred a $1.8 billion loss by selling a portion of its bond portfolio that had fallen underwater.

On a broader scale, estimates show that the US banking industry is confronting roughly $650 billion in unrealized losses. These losses have arisen via a historic decline in bonds due to the efforts made by the Federal Reserve to maintain higher interest rates for a prolonged period.

In a moment of irony, many of these banks had previously disparaged crypto for being too volatile and unpredictable, yet they have proven to be no exception. Not your keys, Not your crypto, is a popular phrase that many in the crypto community often use, as it conveys the notion that investors cannot be sure of their crypto holdings unless they are kept within a wallet to which they have the keys. One could say the same for TradFi institutions however, a fact which the aforementioned unrealized losses prove.

November 03,2023

Disgraced FTX Founder Found Guilty On All Charges

Sam Bankman-Fried (SBF), the founder of the failed crypto exchange FTX, received guilty verdicts on all charges in his recent fraud trial held on November 2nd, 2023. In a federal court in Manhattan, a 12-member jury found him culpable on 7 criminal counts linked to the now infamous collapse of FTX last year, a development which caused the crypto market to crash and many investors to lose their hard earned money.

Justice prevails

Although FTX had collapsed in 2022, the trial of SBF was an entirely different story. Many of his lawyers tried to negotiate a bailout, but repeated instances of new evidence being brought forth only made matters worse for him. The aforementioned decision by the jury itself was only reached following a month-long trial.

Prosecutors depicted the 30 year old former billionaire as a deceitful fraudster who misappropriated billions via funds provided by FTX customers in order to try and cover up significant losses at his hedge fund known as Alameda Research.

SBF had also been imprisoned since August 11th, 2023, for leaking portions of a diary belonging to former Alameda Research CEO, Caroline Ellison, to the New York Times, which the prosecution claimed was witness intimidation.

Ellison testified in early October as part of a plea agreement with the government after pleading guilty to a series of fraud charges and conspiracy to commit money laundering. Not long afterwards, FTX co-founder Gary Wang also testified against Sam.

A historic decision

Sam Bankman-Fried was convicted of wire fraud, securities fraud, participation in a conspiracy, and involvement in money laundering. His sentencing, slated for March 2024, could result in a prison term of up to a whopping 110 years.

The jury swiftly reached a unanimous decision on all charges, which is uncommon in complex white-collar crime cases. Prosecutors presented ample evidence, including messages, indicating that SBF had misled investors about the financial well-being of FTX and utilized customer funds for unauthorized and risky investments through Alameda Research.

The story of Sam and FTX has indeed made history as it is the first instance of such a notable entity within the crypto space not only being charged with a plethora of fraudulent endeavors, but also convicted in such a short amount of time. Going forward, this story will always serve as a cautionary tale for everyone, especially those in relatively newer industries like crypto who may think their malicious actions will go unnoticed and unpunished. 

November 03,2023

Crypto Experiences Tumultuous Week Amid Interesting Global Developments

Bitcoin (BTC) and other cryptocurrencies saw strong gains in late October, but now there seems to be a pause, raising concerns about a potential downturn. This might be due to profit-taking or a return to normalcy after the election of a new house speaker, where crypto was a key campaign topic. Tom Emmer won the Republican nomination for the position in late October.

Elsewhere, Andrew Bailey, Governor of the Bank of England (BoE), recently discussed the Monetary Policy Report and potential inflation concerns. He emphasizes the need for vigilance but not excessively prolonged restrictive policies, citing uncertainties due to events like the ongoing conflict in the Middle East affecting energy prices.

Bearish concerns yet bullish momentum

The crypto sentiment indicator is turning bearish, indicating caution among investors. Historical data suggests that when negative keywords increased, both Bitcoin and altcoins like Ether, Solana, XRP, Cardano, and Shiba Inu saw upward trends.

Despite the bearish sentiment, positive factors persist. CryptoQuant suggests optimism in the market. Additionally, the potential approval of a Bitcoin spot ETF could attract institutional investors and boost prices.

On another note, major stock indexes, including Nasdaq, rose on the back of the United States Federal Reserve deciding to keep interest rates unchanged. Fed Chair Jerome Powell commented on adopting a more cautious approach to rate hikes, making it less likely in the near term.

BoE discusses important updates

The Bank of England maintained the policy rate at 5.25%, as expected. The decision passed with a 6-3 vote, with several main constituents favoring a rate hike. In the policy statement, the BoE noted persistent upside inflation risks.

Key points in the aforementioned Monetary Policy Report include revised inflation forecasts, a slowdown in GDP, and wage growth estimates. The BoE aims to maintain a sufficiently restrictive bank rate for an extended period. The market reacted positively, with GBP/USD rising 0.55% to 1.2215 after the announcement.

November 02,2023

Solana Labs Introduces GameShift As SOL Experiences Price Resurgence

As first revealed via a press release on October 31st, Solana Labs has officially introduced GameShift, its Web3 solution for game developers. The beta launch for GameShift coincides with a remarkable performance in the market for Solana. SOL, its native cryptocurrency, exhibited a 28.4% increase during the 7 day period concluding on November 1st, positioning it among the top-performing cryptocurrencies for that week. Over the past 30 days, SOL surged by 75.5%.

Helping out developers

Davis Hart, Product Lead for GameShift, stated that by integrating the API provided by GameShift in order to successfully manage the intricacies of blockchain technology behind the scenes, developers can therefore allocate more resources to actual game development. This enables developers to offer a user-friendly Web2 experience to gamers, reducing the typical Web3 obstacles that might discourage user acquisition and engagement.

The announcement also outlined that game developers will now have the capability to utilize GameShift for creating in-game assets. Additionally, the platform supports the posting, acquisition, and trading of these assets, all of which can be accomplished without ever possessing cryptocurrency, according to Solana Labs. Transactions can be carried out using USD payments and credit card transactions. It was also revealed that users will be given a fully self-managed wallet too, granting them complete control over their assets, as per the latest documentation.

Solana steadily improving

Solana Labs also mentioned that the service streamlines various aspects associated with blockchain, including storage, transaction fees, and the implementation of smart contracts. The API can also be utilized without requiring any knowledge of blockchain or blockchain programming.

The announcement named three collaborators that support the service alongside Solana Labs itself, namely the NFT creation tool Crossmint, the cryptocurrency payment gateway Coinflow, and the non-custodial wallet protocol Metakeep.

While Solana seems to have gotten back on track, not everyone is convinced as comebacks like this have happened before only for the seemingly inevitable crash to occur not long afterwards. Still, Solana seems to be on the right track, but only time will tell if that will last.

November 02,2023

Cardano Reveals Key Details About Mithril 2 Update

Cardano (ADA) recently unveiled a significant update related to its scaling solution, Mithril. The project has presented a research paper named Mithril 2, outlining the tangible outcomes of their efforts.

Introduced on the Cardano mainnet in July, Mithril has now introduced what the developers refer to as innovative cryptographic methods to validate knowledge of a substantial dataset without fully disclosing the contents of the dataset.

Understanding Mithril 2

Romain Pellerin, the Chief Technical Officer of the research company Input Output Global (IOG), summarized the key points featured in the Mithril 2 document. The CTO clarified that the paper introduces a technique called Approximate Lower Bound Arguments (ALBAs), which aim to enable individuals to confirm ownership of a large dataset without revealing the entirety of it.

This approach proves valuable in scenarios where demonstrating possession of multiple digital signatures by different individuals is needed without disclosing each signature. The fundamental concept behind ALBAs is that the prover only discloses a carefully selected small dataset sample. This approach minimizes the potential for cheating by making it improbable to create such a sample if the actual dataset is small.

Conversely, if the real dataset is extensive, there is likely to be at least one such sample, which ensures the success of an honest prover. The Telescope technique, as outlined in the paper, facilitates the efficient recursive generation of the sample.

Cardano looking to impress

Mithril 2 also addresses situations where the dataset is divided among multiple parties who collectively create the proof. It demonstrates how ALBAs can be applied to extract witnesses efficiently in SNARKs (Succinct, Non-interactive Arguments of Knowledge). Using ALBAs instead of custom constructions reduces the workload for the prover, resulting in shorter proofs when extracting witnesses via SNARKs.

In any case, the Cardano community eagerly anticipates the implementation of these innovative cryptographic techniques, which underscore the dedication of the project toward enhancing the overall scalability and privacy of the Cardano blockchain.

It remains to be seen whether upcoming positive developments within the Cardano ecosystem will have the potential to propel ADA to new highs in 2023 and beyond as well as maintain its competitive standing among the top 10 cryptocurrencies in the market.