Google Will Ban Cryptocurrency Ads – How Will This Affect The Crypto-Sphere?

Google will Ban Cryptocurrency ads

Encouraged by country leaders and banks, major advertising companies have been banning cryptocurrency related-ads on their platform due to the uncertainty surrounding scams and illicit activities using crypto. Facebook already implemented its ban, and now Google will ban cryptocurrency ads on its platform, the company announced today. Based on the company press release, this will be effective as of June 2018. This is big news for cryptocurrencies everywhere.

Google, makes almost 84% of its total revenue from ads, so its announcement to ban any advertising regarding initial coin offerings (ICOs), trading advice and wallets, is weighted.

Along with cryptocurrency, Google will not accept ads from for the following:

  • Contracts for Difference
  • Rolling spot forex
  • Financial spread betting
  • Binary options and synonymous products

Google has said: “We don’t have a crystal ball to know where the future is going to go with cryptocurrencies, but we’ve seen enough consumer harm or potential for consumer harm that it’s an area that we want to approach with extreme caution,”

Advertisers offering rolling spot forex, contracts for difference, and financial spread betting now must have certification from Google to place their ads through AdWords.

Things Aren’t Going In Favor of Bulls

The denouncement of ads from major Ad-hosting services isn’t a good sign for future cryptocurrency prices. The virtual currency is already struggling to sustain trader’s interest and the trading volume is reflecting this. Google searches for bitcoin decreased 80% to its lowest level in the last five months, while trading volume has declined at a robust in the last two months.

Regulators becoming more involved in crypto markets has the potential to enhance confidence in cryptocurrencies in the long-run, however, the short-term impact of this on trading volume might be another red flag for digital currency investors.  Bitcoin (BTC) and other digital currencies extended the downtrend in today’s trading – BTC dipped at a mid-single digit rate today to below the $9,000 level.

Featured Image: twitter

Crypto Startup Coinbase Launches Cryptocurrency Tax Calculator

Cryptocurrency Tax Calculator

Crypto startup Coinbase is stepping up its game. At least, in terms of helping its user base keep up with their tax obligations – it has launched its very own cryptocurrency tax calculator.

What’s Going On?

In January, the exchange and wallet service provider reminded its users that they are eligible for United States capital gains. Today, March 13, Coinbase published a blog post, stating that it has rolled out a cryptocurrency tax calculator. Specifically, Coinbase launched a gain/loss calculation tool. Why? Because the startup wants to help its users stay up to date with their U.S. tax requirements.

What Do We Know About the Cryptocurrency Tax Calculator?

According to the firm, the cryptocurrency tax calculator provides a “preliminary gain/loss calculation” to help its customers. Explaining further, Coinbase stated the cryptocurrency tax calculator can be used to create a report which highlights both their capital gains and losses on its platform. How? By using a FIFO accounting method. However, Coinbase did caution its user base, stating that the calculating tool does come with a couple of conditions.

What are these conditions? Well, according to the firm, the cryptocurrency tax calculator is mainly targeted at users who have previously bought and sold on Coinbase. Further, the crypto startup does not recommend the tax calculator for individuals who have purchased digital assets on another platform. Additionally, Coinbase stated that the cryptocurrency tax calculator “should not be used as official tax documentation without validating the results with your tax professional.”

>>Binance Hack Update: Binance offers Bounty For Information On Hackers

This is not the first time Coinbase has made headlines this month. In fact, on March 6, Coinbase announced that it will be rolling out a weighted index fund for cryptocurrencies. Even though investors were forecasting a different announcement – people thought the firm was going to announce the addition of Ripple to its exchange – the announcement of the index is still pretty monumental. Why? Because the index will reportedly provide investors with a simple way to get exposure to the cryptocurrency assets offered on the startup’s exchange.

What do you think of the cryptocurrency tax calculator?

Featured Image: twitter

Japan Wants G20 Summit to Discuss Crypto Money Laundering

G20 Summit

Japan is the latest country to call for a discussion on cryptocurrency at the forthcoming G20 summit. More specifically, Japan is looking to spark a discussion on crypto money laundering. The meeting is to take place next week in Argentina, and over the course of the last month, we have seen a number of countries come forward and state what they think should be discussed at the 2018 summit.

Cryptocurrency Talks at the G20 Summit

The G20 meeting allows for the world’s 20 leading industrialized economies to come together, and until this point, it seemed that most countries were pushing for cryptocurrency regulation to be discussed at the summit. We first heard about the potential for these talks at the start of February, when Steven Mnuchin, U.S. Treasury Secretary, announced that he plans to start a discussion on cryptocurrency regulation at the March meeting. Shortly after, on February 9, both Germany and France announced that they want a cryptocurrency discussion at the 2018 G20 summit. Specifically, Reuters reported that Germany and France want nations to discuss more cryptocurrency regulation as both countries believe the sector “could pose substantial risks for investors.”

On top of the U.S., Germany, and France pushing for crypto regulation to be discussed next week, we now know that Japan wants there to be a lengthy discussion on the negative effects of crypto money laundering at the Buenos Aires-based meeting.

Japan to Discuss Crypto Money Laundering

Most people are aware that cryptocurrencies are susceptible to illegal activity, such as crypto money laundering, therefore it makes considerable sense that Japan has called for this to be discussed. Reuters reported the news on Tuesday, citing a government official close to the matter. According to the official, Japan plans to discuss “anti-money laundering steps and consumer protection.”

As needed as this discussion might be, the chances that the G20 finance leaders will agree on specific rules are quite low, considering each country has a vastly different approach to the cryptocurrency sector. For instance, Japan wants to focus on the ways in which the world could stop crypto money laundering “rather than how cryptocurrency trading could affect the banking system,” but we know that other nations are going to fight hard for the latter to be discussed.

The Takeaway

Regardless, both Japan and the U.S., Germany, and France are pushing for conversations that should and need to be discussed, even if the conversation lasts 5 minutes. There has been quite the lead up to this meeting, so check back in next week and I’ll try my best to fill you in on the 2018 G20 summit details!

Featured Image: Twitter

McAfee Reports North Korean Cyber Attacks Against Turkey

McAfee Labs

McAfee Labs, the popular cybersecurity company owned by renowned hacker and crypto investor John Mcafee, released a report on March 8, 2018 indicating that several businesses in Turkey could have been compromised due to the spread of a malware that gave attackers control over much of the information they handled as well as various remote access tools.

“Based on our analysis, financial organizations in Turkey were targeted via spear phishing emails containing a malicious Microsoft Word document. The document contains an embedded Adobe Flash exploit, which was recently announced by the Korean Internet Security agency. The exploit, which takes advantage of CVE-2018-4878, allows an attacker to execute arbitrary code such as an implant “.

The malware has an almost exact resemblance to the structure of one that was already identified and neutralized in 2016 when a series of attacks were perpetrated on the SWIFT system, attempting to steal the amount of US$951 million by installing a “clone” of the Foxit Reader PDF reader.

This malware, identified as “Bankshot” reappeared a few days ago, and due to its similarity of coding, many FBI experts, analysts at the Department of Homeland Security and independent researchers have associated its creation with the “Hidden Cobra” group. This team of crackers has been officially linked to North Korea according to official reports from the United States, in which they do not provide evidence to support their findings.

Malware starts with an invitation to download an agreement template for Bitcoin distribution between an unknown individual in Paris and a crypto exchange. The address of the exchange resembles the one of cryptocurrency-lending platform FalconCoin but with a small change: instead of being www.falconcoin.co (currently unavailable), the address leads to www.falcancoin.io

After downloading the agreement, the malware self-executes “(giving) an attacker full capability on a victim’s system“.

>>SWIFT Is Testing Its Own Blockchain And It’s Going “Extremely Well”

Exchanges and crypto-lending platforms, especially those aimed at decentralization have generated many expectations in the community, but a series of exit scams and project delays have diminished their reputation. Following in the footsteps of Bitconnect, LoopX and DavorCoin, it seems that FalconCoin may also have exit-scammed.
The problem has already been solved by McAfee Labs without major financial losses.

Featured Image: twitter

CoinLib: Track Your Crypto in Real-Time while Getting the Best Price

CoinLib

CoinLib is one of the latest ways to track your crypto. But it’s so much more than that too.

Real-Time Price Updates

Crypto prices update in real-time on CoinLib.

Prices on CoinLib are calculated based on the volumes from each exchange. At the moment, CoinLib collects data from over 60 exchanges and supports over 2,300 coins, with more coins added often. The coin prices may differ slightly from those seen on other crypto trackers, such as CoinMarketCap. This is because CoinLib calculates prices based on your preferred fiat currency. Only those exchanges that support trading between the crypto and your chosen fiat currency will enter into the calculation.

CoinLib shows coins movements based on the past hour, the past 24 hours, the past seven days, and the past 30 days. You select what range you’d like to see (you can change the selection whenever you want).

CoinLib
Source: CoinLib

You can click on any coin to get more detailed information about that coin.

CoinLib
Source: CoinLib

There’s also a tab called ‘Movers’. This shows you the biggest percentage winners and losers for the time period (one hour, 24 hours, seven days, 30 days).

CoinLib
Source: CoinLib

These are all features you can access simply by going to the site, no account necessary. Once you get an account, more features become available. Signing up for an account is free.

>> Monero, VeChain Thor, and Nano dip further on the crypto market

Star Your Favourites; Build a Portfolio

Once you have an account, you can start building up your own personal portfolio.

You can start your ‘favorite cryptos‘ page for quick access to their prices and movements.

Real-time then crosses into your portfolio, allowing you to track the coins you trade and how your investment is performing. You can easily add any trade you’ve done, from either your desktop or your phone.

CoinLib
Source: SmartOptions

CoinLib also allows you to set up alerts. You choose the crypto you want to be alerted about, what type of alert you receive, and the amount reached to trigger the alert. This can be set up as a single alert or as recurring alerts. You can choose to receive the alert through email or as an in-browser notification.

CoinLib
Source: SmartOptions

>> NEM, Sirin Labs, and Ethereum Classic rise despite struggling market

Compare Coins

You can also compare coins with the ‘Compare Coins‘ tool. This allows you to compare the performances of up to four coins within a selected date range.

CoinLib
Source: SmartOptions

This is a helpful tool for doing investment research. The tool provides in-depth graphs comparing the coins you’ve chosen, showing information like overall performance, trading volume, and market cap.

>> Ripple CEO believes cryptocurrencies must work with government regulations

Best Price Explorer

Another tool offered is the ‘Best Price Explorer‘. This tool provides you with the best and worst prices for a chosen trading pair. The only catch is that neither exchange nor network fees are taken into consideration, so be mindful of that when using.

CoinLib
Source: CoinLib

>> Technical issues on Binance cause users to lose funds

The Latest Crypto News

The app provides a feed for the latest crypto news as well, which includes articles from various crypto sites and tweets from coins, along with other trending crypto updates.

>> Bittrex responds to SEC statement on crypto regulations

You can learn more about CoinLib here.

Featured image: icenter

Want to Pay Tax in Bitcoin? These Three US States Might Soon Let You

Illinois

The U.S. state of Illinois is currently weighing legislation which will allow residents to use cryptocurrencies to pay taxes.

House Bill 5335, or the Revenue Cryptocurrency Bill, was introduced by Rep. Michael J. Zalewski and states that “the Department shall accept payment for any tax imposed by the State and administered by the Department by cryptocurrency.”

In practice, the taxpayer would send cryptocurrency as a tax payment which the state department would then convert back into US dollars at ‘the prevailing rate within 24 hours’. The department then credits the taxpayer’s account with whatever value that may be.

>> Lisk (LSK), Nano, and NEO Plummet in a Dropping Crypto Market

The bill was first introduced to legislators on 16th February and was yesterday assigned to the Revenue & Finance committee for consideration. Similar bills are being weighed by Arizona and Georgia which will also legalize Bitcoin as payment for tax. Both the Georgia (Senate Bill 464) and Arizona bill (Senate Bill 1091) similarly outline the exchange from cryptocurrency into USD and subsequent crediting of the taxpayer’s account (though Arizona’s bill does not specify the 24-hour time-frame).

Currently, Arizona is closest to passing or scrapping the legislation, which could potentially affect how the other two are decided. The bill was read to the house a second time on February 20th, with a hearing taking place at 7PM MST tomorrow, March 7th.

>> Circle Buys Poloniex | Could it be the Bitcoin Bank of the Future?

The news is likely to excite cryptocurrency investors, and it will come as a relief that some US states seem to be embracing cryptocurrency rather than rejecting it. And its understandable given an unpredictable year which has seen cryptocurrency crackdowns in countries such as China and South Korea, as well as closer to home in Texas. Legislators and companies are also beginning to scrutinize fraudulent ICOs.

This is not the first time that cryptocurrency and tax have been discussed together. There is some uncertainty among investors as to how cryptocurrencies themselves will be taxed, since the US Internal Revenue Service (IRS) classes Bitcoin et al as property, and are therefore subject to capital gain implications.

It will certainly be interesting to see which the way Illinois legislation goes in the coming weeks in addition to how Arizona’s hearing goes tomorrow. Watch this space!

Featured image: ccn.com

Cryptocurrencies are in The Red; Ripple, NEO, and Stellar Lead the Selloff

Ripple

Bitcoin (BTC) and the other top ten currencies are in the red today; digital currencies are giving up all the gains they generated during the last couple of days. Bitcoin price slumped again close to the $11,000 mark, while the double-digit decline in Ripple (XRP), NEO (NEO), and Stellar (XLM) prices slashed cryptocurrency market capitalization to $445 billion – down from Mondays high of $470 billion.

The crypto market hasn’t experienced any major supporting news from the market; the recent rally was based on speculations regarding the regulatory actions – indeed prices steadily moved higher in the last few days despite strong warnings from regulators and market pundits.

Ripple, NEO, and Stellar Lead the Selloff

Ripple

Source Image: coinmarketcap.com

Ripple price reversed all the gains it had generated amid speculations of the coins inclusion to the Coinbase trading platform. Coinbase management has refuted all the rumors – in fact; they denied the addition of ripple or any other digital currency to their platform. Ripple price currently trades in the range of $0.94 – XRP price declined 11% today.

NEO coin has also been under intense pressure; traders are criticizing NEO for its centralized nature and the node crashes. Reports show that most blockchain technologies have hundreds of nodes and they shouldn’t have a center point of failure. Neo price plunged from $145 at the beginning of the month to $106 at present – the price dipped 10% today alone.

Stellar price grew sharply on Monday – the price has hit $0.40 mark in mid-day trading before retreating to $0.35 on Tuesday. The rally in ripple price also supported XLM on crypto exchanges. Stellar has also been expanding its penetration in the financial sectors, supported by its blockchain technology which is quite similar to Ripple.

The Broader Selloff Impacts the Entire Crypto Market

The entire crypto market retreated from Mondays high; the market sentiments moved towards regulators – who are actively criticizing cryptocurrencies and warning investors against complete losses.

European Commission financial services commissioner, Valdis Dombrovskis strongly admired the innovation of blockchain technology. However, he strongly criticized the cryptocurrency mania. He said: “Cryptocurrencies – which are not currencies in a traditional sense and whose value is not guaranteed – have become subject to considerable speculation: this exposes consumers and investors to substantial risk, including risks to lose their investment.”

Featured Image: Depositphotos/© aa-w

Medicalchain Strikes Big Partnership, Will Release 30,000 Patient Pilot

Medicalchain

Medicalchain just announced some big news, after just recently closing out its ICO. The team has closed a partnership deal with The Groves Medical Group, based in London. The Groves currently serves over 30,000 patients and over 1,000 private patients families. The medical group will be the first medical practice in the United Kingdom to use Blockchain tech as a means to record its medical data, as well as accepting cryptocurrency as a means of payment for service. Patients will be able to download a free wallet which will hold and manage their entire medical records.

>> Medicalchain CEO interview

The pilot for this project is anticipated for July 2018 and will provide the medicalchain team feedback from patients and providers ahead of its future global launch. This is just the first application in Medicalchain’s platform – powered by Hyperledger. The platform will also provide its patients access to flexible telemedicine, an emerging sector within healthcare. Patients can schedule an appointment with a General Practioner and see them from the convenience of their own home. The medicalchain platform allows the patient to pay in fiat, but there’s an incentive for paying with Medicalchain’s MedToken (MTN).

More details of the pilot program will be released within the next coming weeks, as certain processes are currently being refined by both parties.

In the official press release, Senior partner at the Groves, Dr. Vince Grippaudo said:

“This is a unique opportunity to work with the leaders in blockchain for healthcare and offer our patients cutting-edge technology. We believe that by empowering people to choose how they access healthcare, we can reduce the burden on public health services. The goal is to improve health services, not only in the UK but across the world, and with Medicalchain we believe we can be a part of that.”

This is big news for the Medicalchain team. Since the token’s launch on February 3rd, MTN has decreased around –25%. You can currently trade for MTN on Huobi, Coinbene, Qryptos, Kucoin, Gate.io, and IDEX.

>> Medicalchain Set to Revolutionize Healthcare

Featured Image: CVJ

What is President Trump’s Cryptocurrency Opinion?

Trump's Cryptocurrency Opinion

President Trump’s cryptocurrency opinion has not been made entirely clear to the public. Considering the increase in popularity of cyrptocurrency over the past year do you think he should make an official statement?

President Trump seems to have an opinion on everything. Whether that be an opinion about North Korea, the matter of fake news, or gun control in the US, we know Trump is going to make these opinions public. For these reasons, I would have thought, due to the rapid increase in popularity, Trump would have made a comment or two about the cryptocurrency sector.

That doesn’t seem to be the case. Well, a few people have spoken about the sector for the president, but he hasn’t actually come out and personally said what he thinks about virtual currencies like bitcoin. So how do we know the administration is really passing on Trump’s truth? I guess the answer to that is we don’t. We can, however, investigate what has been said about cryptocurrencies by the Trump administration.

Here’s What We Know!

In October of 2017, rumors started to circulate that the Trump administration was planning to ban bitcoin. We also saw attorney general Jeff Sessions state that bitcoin and the use of other cryptocurrencies on the dark web is posing to be a serious problem. Reportedly, individuals on the dark web were selling illegal substances and to do so, were using bitcoin as it has untraceable financial capabilities.

The latest we heard from the administration regarding cryptocurrencies came from White House press secretary Sarah Sanders. It was an announcement that took the entire industry by surprise. Sanders mentioned that Homeland security is monitoring bitcoin, adding that it is something Trump is keeping his eye on.

Personally, I would like to see the president address the industry himself. It is something that has taken the United States by storm, and if Trump wants to share his opinion on North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un, then I think he should address something that his civilians are pouring both countless hours and resources into.

What do you think? Let us know in the comments below!

Featured Image: Twitter

Crypto ATMs Opened in Ecuador Despite Country Ban

A brave group of cryptocurrency investors, Criptoasesores, have just pledged an all-out war on the Ecuadorian government by opening the country’s first crypto ATMs in the country’s capital. The country’s central government has had a firm negative stance on cryptocurrency and has tried strongly to ban it over the last four years. Earlier this year, the country’s central bank sent out a strong statement to its residents. The statement read:

To the citizenship: The Central Bank of Ecuador informs the public that bitcoin is not a means of payment authorized for its use in the country. Bitcoin is a cryptocurrency that has no backup because it supports its value in speculation. The financial transactions carried out through bitcoin are not controlled, supervised or regulated by any entity in Ecuador, which is why its use represents a financial risk for those who use it. It is important to point out that the purchase and sale of cryptocurrencies -like bitcoin- through the Internet is not prohibited; However, it is emphasized that bitcoin is not a legal currency and is not authorized as a means of payment of goods and services in Ecuador, as established in Article 94 of the Monetary and Financial Organic Code.

The ATMs installed by the Criptoasesores group enable individuals to exchange fiat for Bitcoin, DASH, and Pura. The group didn’t feel it was necessary to ask permission to do such things because they aren’t offering any financial services. Dany Ledesma, a criptoasesores‘ employee, spoke to the Antigua Report and said, “We continue to work to improve the ATMs technology and find a profitable business model.”

>>Are Criminals Keeping Bitcoin Prices Afloat? Will Regulations Squander That?

Obviously, these two ATMs launching have further exposed the Ecuadorian government’s idea of Bitcoin as a threat. Many governments in the past have attempted to crack down on cryptocurrency as it gained mainstream attention but most, have failed. You can add Ecuador to that list, as I anticipate more ATMs to be installed in the near future.

Featured Image: Union