Bitcoin (BTC), cryptocurrency prices rise as halving
Bitcoin (BTC), cryptocurrency prices rise as halving
Philippines Now Has 10 Approved Crypto Exchanges
Philippines Now Has 16 Cryptocurrency Exchanges Approved
48 Crypto Exchanges Approved in the Philippines
The dark and shady past of Bitfinex's "bank" Crypto
Be your own financial crime investigator!
Letter from Quadriga' counsel: Representative Counsel has received information that a Panamanian shadow bank, Crypto Capital Corp. (“Crypto Capital”), may have been a payment processor for Quadriga in the final quarter of its operation. Representative Counsel has been investigating, since its appointment, whether any Quadriga funds were potentially retained by Crypto Capital. Crypto Capital and its executives are currently being investigated by the U.S. Department of Justice. Polish authorities have seized Crypto Capital bank accounts, amounting to approximately $350 million, in an investigation relating to alleged laundered drug cartel funds. Bitfinex, another cryptocurrency exchange, has asserted that it was defrauded by Crypto Capital. Through its parent corporation iFinex Inc., it has claimed right to these seized assets via ongoing U.S. proceedings (case: 8:19-mc-00021 in the United District Court for the Central District of California). iFinex Inc. has also filed claims in the Judicial Court of Western Lisbon (Portugal) and a “Norwich Pharmacal” disclosure request with the Business and Property Courts of England and Wales, regarding Crypto Capital-controlled accounts in Portugal and the United Kingdom. As you are aware, Ernst & Young Inc. (the “Trustee”) has been unable to locate QuadrigaCX’s basic corporate records or accounting records. As a result, Representative Counsel is asking Affected Users for assistance on this matter to uncover whether Crypto Capital held Quadriga funds.
Please take a look below at our draft of a Monero SWOT analysis and submit any feedback or suggestions you can find. If there is a webpage that could be linked to support any of these or other suggested items, please share as well. We will take your input into consideration for the final draft, which will be translated into multiple languages and made available on monerooutreach.org Thanks for contributing! -----
SWOT Analysis of Monero
Monero has been in development since 2014. It utilizes the CryptoNote protocol, which was created in response to the inherent weaknesses of Bitcoin. Here we take a look at the Monero project to determine it’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. Strengths
Privacy. Obfuscating every layer of the transaction (sender, receiver, and amount), Monero seeks to find the right balance between absolute privacy and usability.
Highly researched. Uses proven encryption protocols to maintain privacy for the network and it’s users. Also has it’s own Monero Research Lab which sends new developments through formal third party auditing before implementing into Monero code.
Active community.23 repositories in the Monero Ecosystem. 340 repositories on the Monero topic. 200+ active contributors to the Monero code. Workgroups ranging from general Community organization, Research, Translations/Localization, Outreach, hardware wallets, and event planning.
Fixed supply schedule of 0.3 XMR per minute, so a rise in demand could see appreciation for the long term and it incentivizes miners to secure the network indefinitely. Also creates stable, predictable inflation which supports good economics.
ASIC resistant proof of work consensus algorithms acknowledge the centralization issues inherent in a small group of companies manufacturing most of the world’s ASICs. The Monero community has established consensus to resist ASIC mining until ASICs are commoditized and accessibility problems improve. This currently makes mining Monero something that is accessible to anyone with a CPU.
Great communication with exchanges, wallet providers, community, investors, miners and the public via Reddit, Twitter, GitHub, and their mailing list. Communicating network upgrade requirements and critical updates and notices. Additionally, they provide full logs of development meetings going back as far as 2016.
Usability. Desktop GUI wallets are available and relatively easy to use for Windows, MacOS, and Linux. User friendly mobile wallets are available on Android and iOS. Hardware wallet support on Ledger and coming soon on Trezor. Monero community has also funded development of an open-source hardware wallet.
Auditable by choice. Unlike Bitcoin that has a transparent blockchain and can be audited by anyone at anytime, Monero can be audited by choosing to share it’s private view keys, allowing auditors to confirm an individual’s amount of Monero and giving individuals the power to control when they choose to share.
Accessible and acceptable through dozens of exchanges and a number of payment gateways. Accepted by a long and respectable list of merchants. See official website and Project Coral Reef for examples.
Public. The lead maintainer, Riccardo Spagni, is not afraid to show his face in public. This is also true of many of the most active community members.
Business Oriented. Many developers and community members have built and are building businesses around Monero to enhance the ecosystem.
Scalable. Dynamic block size limit depending on network demand allows for automatic scalability.
Decentralized and Global. The Monero community and it’s developers are made of individuals from around the planet and has an incredibly active Localization/Translation system that produces Monero content and services for a wide range of languages around the world.
Future Oriented. Monero’s community has donated to fund development of Kovri, a decentralized network-traffic hiding tool that will allow users to hide their location and IP address. The Monero Transmissions Lab also aims to brainstorm solutions for future off-grid or off-main-net Monero transactions, using open-sourced protocols and infrastructure for satellite and mobile ad hoc mesh communications.
Savvy and Dedicated Community. Monero’s online community is known for it’s no-frills attitude and has consistently demonstrated the depth and breadth of it’s knowledge-base by contributing to online forums, research, lectures, and other cryptocurrency related developments.
Talent Magnet. Monero has attracted several talented individuals who contribute to it’s code and ecosystem. A notable example is Howard Chu, Founder and Chief Architect of Symas Corp. and former technician and consultant of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory who supported Shuttle missions as a lead software engineer.
Liquidity. Due to the relative complexity of Monero’s code (compared to Bitcoin or ERC20 based cryptocurrencies) it is more challenging to integrate Monero on cryptocurrency exchanges, services, and markets, thus making liquidity a bigger challenge.
Bi-annual Network Upgrades (Hard forks). While currently a strength because it patches bugs and enhances the performance, efficiency, and usability of Monero, it is not a good long-term strategy. Creates more opportunities for scam forks to arise, which can create confusion and decrease network privacy if users share secret keys with forked coins.
Scalability. Monero solves the fungibility and privacy issues of bitcoin at the expense of additional technical complexity through privacy layers. It also means the scaling issues of bitcoin are magnified to some extent with Monero. Monero’s dynamic blocksize helps, but these other issues must be addressed.
Governance of the Monero project is not completely decentralized. However, the core developers communicate transparently and attempt to find consensus among the community before major decisions are made. So far they have not abused their powers.
Relatively centralized development team and social media channels that so far has been benevolent, but does make some people concerned about centralization.
Community Discussion is found primarily on IRC, Reddit, and GitHub. For some, this is not decentralized enough.
Complex and highly technical. The encryption protocols, hashing algorithms, and various features like Payment ID, Subaddresses, Ring CT, and others can create confusion and uncertainty among less technical users and community members. It has also shown to be a barrier to adoption because it creates challenges for exchanges, merchants, and others to integrate Monero into their ecosystems. It is a challenge to articulate the complexities of Monero into layman’s terms, much less usable plug-and-play software and hardware integration.
Large blockchain size over 60 GB, which must be synced to show balance and transact with wallets. Steps are being taken to mitigate this, but it is still a challenge for easy usability.
Funding Model is based on donations. Potential donors are incentivized to “free ride”, and see if someone else will donate instead. It also makes it hard to raise funds for other important things like quality control, customer support, and documentation. This puts pressure on those who own a lot of Monero and can lead to slower development in general.
The code and especially APIs could be cleaner for developers to help improve adoption and integration with business and services.
Transaction size. The enhanced privacy layers of Monero make for a larger transaction size than bitcoin. Bulletproofs made a significant improvement for Monero transactions, but more needs to be done to ensure scalability to and beyond the level of daily bitcoin transactions.
Market Cap. Monero has the opportunity to remain the highest-ranked privacy-based cryptocurrency.
Bitcoin hedge. As the inherent issues with Bitcoin and it’s lack of privacy at the protocol level become more realized by the public, Monero has an opportunity to significantly increase by market cap as well as adoption and liquidity.
Economic empowerment and human rights. Monero’s privacy features are aligned with human rights values and could become more widely recognized and used in countries that are experiencing political or economic oppression.
Private Wealth. Monero’s privacy features make it attractive to high-net-worth individuals and institutions that want to participate in cryptocurrency while keeping their wealth private.
New developers. Being the number three cryptocurrency in terms of developers, Monero has an opportunity to attract new talent and surpass the amount of developers as Bitcoin or Ethereum, the only two current leaders over Monero by number of developers.
Open Source Community. The free and open source ethos of Monero are very strong, which make it a candidate to be adopted by the ever expanding global open source community. Continued adoption can lead to an even stronger ecosystem and increased liquidity.
Artists. Artists of various genres have begun to integrate Monero payments, a trend that may continue and thus, support the use case of Monero.
Regulation. Monero faces a threat of being removed from exchanges in the future if regulation around exchanges continues. The privacy focus of Monero also makes it a potential target of KYC/AML regulation. Although the ability to share private view keys for auditing Monero will curb this threat substantially, it could create near-term challenges until regulators are educated.
Market share. Monero could lose market share to other privacy coins.
Network Attacks. A variety of attacks on the Monero network are theoretically possible and have been explored in depth by the Breaking Monero series.
Misinformation and censorship. Coordinated misinformation campaigns could potentially lead to attempts to ban Monero in certain jurisdictions or decrease it’s popularity in general. While Monero cannot technically be censored, this theoretical threat could hurt it’s adoption and decrease liquidity in certain jurisdictions.
ChainLink - Rank 97 with no competitors. Undervalued Gem?
What Does ChainLink Do? In a nutshell, ChainLink aims to solve the connectivity problem, a key limiting factor for smart contract usability, and whilst it's an ERC-20 token it will not be limited to just the Ethereum blockchain. What makes $LINK so special? Well, it's the first decentralized oracle network; allowing anyone to securely provide smart contracts with access to key external data, off-chain payments and any other API capabilities. Anyone who has a data feed, useful off-chain service such as local payments, or any other API, can now provide them directly to smart contracts in exchange for LINK tokens. Partnerships I will keep this brief, as you can see a full list of current and potential partnerships on https://www.reddit.com/LINKTradecomments/7mob78/list_of_chainlinks_partnershipsprojects_using/ But the main ones to look at are
SWIFT (we know SmartContract, the company behind ChainLink, are working with SWIFT on improving the efficiency of their bond payments, but nothing official regarding LINK & SWIFT yet).
The Pros ChainLink has steadily been gaining traction ever since its downfall after the 4chan/reddit SIBOS hypetrain crash (post September). It's remained around the 90-100 rank mark and has yet to really "moon".
Team has been working on this for 3 years and initial testnet is due to be released in Q1
Zero competition and first mover advantage even if there was (other oracles are currently centralized)
Etherscan shows that soon 95% of all available circulating LINK will be consolidated into less than 15,000 wallets and that continues to shrink as more people try to chase pumps, they're being shaken into stronger hands. As soon as Sergey's saved up LINK is finally handed over to institutions we'll see the price jump by increments of dollars and it'll be way too for most people by then (https://etherscan.io/token/0x514910771af9ca656af840dff83e8264ecf986ca)
Team is actively hiring more developers and a head of marketing
Only on one major exchange, so price likely to increase when listed on further exchanges
Team is focused on development rather than shilling (take TRON for example) so lack of news/tweets to get normies on board (can be taken as a pro as you're still considered early)
The 4chan meme token
GitHub is private whilst the team work on moving from RoR to GO for Q1 Intitial Testnet release.
Not all team members listed on the website
So what makes ChainLink valuable? The LINK token is used by smart contract owners to pay chainlink nodes for getting data from them and the more LINKs an oracle node has, the more reputable it is. So oracle node providers are incentivized to hold as much LINKs in their chainlink nodes to appear more reputable to the chainlink network, gaining more usage and profit (Taken from a comment on https://www.reddit.com/CryptoCurrency/comments/7nwis4/why_i_believe_chainlink_link_is_the_most/) Most importantly, LINK can (and will be) used for data request penalty payments to ensure that node operators provide the requested data. Penalty payments are LINK tokens that are required to be held in escrow by the smart contract. They are paid to the smart contract creator in the event any of the node operators do not meet the required data requests as stated in the smart contract. This provides an incentive for smart contract creators to trust node operators, knowing that they have a form of financial insurance (the penalty payment) in the event a node (or nodes) submit bad data. For information that will trigger high value smart contracts, smart contract owners will want to require a proportionate amount of link to be held in escrow as penalty payments by the node operators. When link is tied up for penalty payments, it is released over the life of the contract. For example, let’s say party A wants an API snapshot sent every day for 30 days. If the penalty payment for the contract is 300 LINK (per node operator), then each node operator will have 10 LINK released to them at the end of each day – receiving the full 300 LINK at the end of the 30 days if they successfully performed the data request the smart contract asked for. Now imagine the smart contract creator wanted 10 node operators. That means 3000 LINK is taken off the market immediately, and 100 of that 3000 is released each day from the smart contract to the individual node operators (10 each per operator, assuming they provided the requested data). A cycle will be created where more and more smart contracts will make requests and node operators will be limited only by the availability of their LINK tokens to be used for penalty payments. Add it all together and you have a singular payment method for a desired network (the most secure external data oracle), lots of supply constantly locked up to have enough link for signaling purposes (the reputation boost for a node operator), financial insurance for smart contract creators (penalty payments) for increasingly valuable triggering data in a wide variety of smart contracts, and a network poised for growth as more adapters are built and more API’s become available so that dapps can thrive on any blockchain network. Yes LINk is an ERC20 token, but it is blockchain agnostic and the adapter network can continue to grow. LINK can also be staked! LINK staking is another big thing that will do wonders for Chainlink's valuation. Turns out Chainlink oracles can be made into pools, similar to mining pools on bitcoin and ethereum where multiple people come and put their LINKs together to run a more secure oracle node and distribute the profits fairly between each other. This will be huge as it will effectively allow you to stake your LINK tokens and earn more of them passively without doing anything. One such pool in development is LinkPool (http://www.linkpool.io/). Where do i buy and store LINK? You can currently buy LINK at the following exchanges;
On Tuesday 16th July, just a few weeks ago I was invited to attend a Karatbit, Karatbars/Karatbank presentation. The presentation was touting everything including a blockchain mobile phone. Someone had approached me over the weekend to investigate an investment, they had made with Karatbit/Karatbars. I attended the presentation with some research which, to be honest, was not that favourable to the company but nevertheless still went with an open mind. KaratBank, a Singapore-based financial organization, has propelled another digital currency that it claims is bound to real physical gold. Is this a progressive thought – or a trick? KaratBank, an organization located in Singapore, has quite recently declared the dispatch of KaratBank Coins (KBC), another digital currency it said is attached to gold. Be that as it may, not just the cost of gold, as different monetary forms — to real bits of gold: they're embedded in plastic cards or banknotes. In any event, that is the way it appears upon first sight. KaratBank is a sister company of KaratBars International, located in Germany. KaratBars really sells gold in exceptionally small quantities (like 0.1g to 1g bullions), inserted into plastic cards (Karatbars) or money like notes (CashGold). The notes are famously overpriced: back when 1 gram of gold was $40, the 1g CashGold note cost $65. As per KaratBank whitepaper, 10,000 KBC can be traded for 0.1g CashGold notes. The initial coin offering kicked off earlier this year and proceeded until March 21, with the ICO starting March 22 (1 KBC = $0.05), Coin Telegraph reports. Be that as it may, KaratBars International as an organization is emphatically connected with scams. A basic search for KaratBars on Google returns three connections with the word "scam" in them on the first page. KaratBars was prohibited in Canada in 2014 over an Autorité des marchés agents (AMF) with a Scam warning. The Canadian government found that KaratBars executes some kind of multi-layered marketing (MLM), or "pyramid" scheme organisation that urged individuals to get new recruits and profit from their sales, promising a return of $15,000 to $136,000 every month. In any case, Is KaratBank is a different story? All things considered, yes and no. Upon a more intensive look at the organization's whitepaper, one finds the following: "United States of America citizens, residents (tax or otherwise) or green card holders, as well as residents of Canada, the People's Republic of China or the Republic of Singapore, are not qualified to partake in the KaratBank ICO." As indicated by the Behind MLM site, the explanation behind this may lie in the way that those nations have actualized strict regulation on ICOs, and KaratBank does not have any desire to have anything to do with them. "ICOs are not unlawful in the US or Canada. In the US, however, ICOs are ordinarily viewed as securities and require registration with the [Securities and Exchange Commission]," the site reads. "Singapore hasn't prohibited ICOs however it is one of the nations KaratBars International works in through the shell companies KaratPay and KaratBars Singapore. Singapore regulators closing those organizations down would cripple KaratBars International. The board most likely figure it's best not to take any risks." To work lawfully in any purview, KaratBars International would need to register itself with the proper securities regulator in that jurisdiction, which the organization appears to need to abstain from, raising doubts. From one's point of view what is disheartening is that blockchain is a great new technology and companies like this seem to mix their existing business with cryptocurrencies. Knowing full well that the general public does not really understand cryptocurrencies, let alone blockchain or Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT). As a blockchain consultant, one feels obligated to pose some questions anyone thinking of getting involved should be asking. At the presentation, I heard the presenters say “ Karatbars is giving its members the opportunity to buy gold in small quantities. They also encourage you to save in gold instead of paper money. This can easily be done by buying as little as 0.1 gram of gold or 1 gram - 2.5 gram or 5 grams.” They said members can keep their gold in Karatbars' vault or ask them to send it to you. Cash gold is the most popular form of buying gold as the gold is embedded in a banknote. 24kt gold 99.9% pure makes it easier for anyone to accumulate wealth. Karatbars is also involved in cryptocurrency and got their own coins, namely KBC and KCB coins. I'm going to get very deep into this, but the main thing to remember is that they say, “these coins are increasing in value and that it is backed by gold”. whereas and another Cryptocurrency is backed by nothing. As a self-proclaimed proponent of blockchain and a graduate of Digital Forensics, I feel obligated to say a few words about this presentation on Karatbit or at least as a conscious citizen of this global world of technology users. Blockchain is a magnificent emerging technology that can be harnessed to do so many things. But most importantly it is a technology that provides one single source of truth. If groups are using this single source of truth technology to spread untruths, someone concerned must come out to say something. Blockchain is a technology that can put everyone on an even playing field but it seems very few understand it. The individuals with even the fleeting basic understanding can influence the general public perception of cryptocurrencies. This leads me to ask a great quote from a book called Richest Man in Babylon …. “if you want advice on investing in expensive jewels, why would you go to a butcher?” The following is what the masses are being manipulated to attach their hopes and dreams. It is that “a further drop in the value of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies has recently left investors nursing heavy losses. Many proponents are holding out for a new breakout “if their digital assets can go mainstream.” The most important part of that statement is “if their digital assets can go mainstream”. This made me ask some questions about Karatbit and this is what I came up with. Something is fishy!! Can someone clarify the following? Claim 1: Gold mine worth $900 million provides security. Can’t find any official source as proof. Reference: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TyKQIckXyIU Claim 2: Backed by a gold mine in Africa Can’t find any official source as proof. Reference: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d5Q3ZvR4b04 Claim 3: Audit report by MM Revisors for a gold mine in Madagascar Can’t find proof that MM Revisors exists. Not sure if this report was published by Karatbars Int (can’t find it on their official website), but this is being circulated by some investors as if it were. Reference: https://karatbars-me.webnode.es/\_files/200000070-01d6002d18/audit.pdf Claim 4: Karatcoin Bank is a fully licensed crypto bank and is situated in Miami Can’t find proof that they are registered as a licensed financial institute in Miami, Florida. Can’t find Karatcoin Bank as a registered corporation, but found Karat Coin Corp. Reference: http://search.sunbiz.org/Inquiry/CorporationSearch/SearchResults?inquiryType=EntityName&searchNameOrder=KARATBANK&searchTerm=Karatbank Reference: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YXip2Fizz5U&t=152s Claim 5: Not a pyramid scheme Karatbit describes this as an affiliate program but clearly is a pyramid scheme at best, see links below; Canada: https://www.newswire.ca/news-releases/karatbars-quebec-activities-covered-by-prohibition-orders-514201571.html Namibia: https://economist.com.na/43874/extra/karatbars-international-is-a-scamsays-central-bank/ Netherlands: https://www.afm.nl/en/nieuws/2014/mei/waarschuwing-karatbars Claim 6: 100KBC = 1g of Gold at $40 per gram (1 KBC = $0.40) (guaranteed) Total supply = 12,000,000,000 KBC (can’t find figures of circulating, so using supply instead) Total gold needed to cover buy back of all coins: 12,000,000,000 / 100 = 120 000 000g = 120 tons (South Africa as a whole produced 139.9 tons of Gold in 2017). Total money needed to buy back all the coins: 120 000 000g x $40 = $4.8 Billion Can’t find proof that they have 120 tons of gold in storage (or backed up by the mines as claimed) or that they are at least worth $4.8 Billion to buy the gold? Taking a more conservative approach: According to icobench.com, they raised $100 000 000 with their ICO from 60% of the total supply. Let’s assume the 60% of 12,000,000,000 is in circulation. This equals to 7,200,000,000 KBC. Total gold needed for the buyback of 7,200,000,000 KBC: 7,200,000,000 / 100 = 72 000 000g = 72 tons Total money needed to buy back all coins: 72 000 000g x $40 = $2.88 Billion Loss for buying back the KBC that were sold during the ICO: $100,000,000 - $2,880,000,000 = - $2,780,000,000 A potential loss of $2,78 Billion!!! Or am I taking crazy pills? Reference: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KgeHjhlMfn0 Reference: https://icobench.com/ico/karatgold-coin Claim 7: This Forbes.com article gives credibility to the KBC coin This article was written by a Contributor. Reference: https://www.forbes.com/sites/joresablount/2019/05/31/10-blockchain-companies-to-watch-in-2019/#308b507e543f There is no traditional editing of contributors’ copy, at least not prior to publishing. If a story gets hot or makes the homepage, a producer will “check it more carefully,” DVorkin said. Reference: https://www.poynter.org/reporting-editing/2012/what-the-forbes-model-of-contributed-content-means-for-journalism/ “Blogging for Forbes requires being what is commonly referred to as a "self-starter." So far, nobody has said, "Um, you can't do that," or, "Oh, my God, no!" Reference: https://www.forbes.com/sites/susannahbreslin/2011/04/06/how-to-become-a-forbes-blogge#231bb9972862 “Warning over 'scammers paradise' as watchdog reveals victims lost £27m to bitcoin, cryptocurrency and forex frauds last year” • Some 1,850 cases were reported to Action Fraud, a 250% increase on 2017-18 • Victims lost an average of £14,600 - with fewer than 1 in 20 getting money back • Investors are often initially told they've made a profit • They are then encouraged to put in more money - at which point the fraudsters run off with their cash Potential victims have been warned over bogus online 'get rich quick' schemes as it emerged people lost more than £27million to cryptocurrency and foreign exchange scams last year. Fraudsters promise high returns to those who invest, according to Action Fraud and the Financial Conduct Authority. Victims lost an average of £14,600 in 2018-19 and stand little chance of getting their money back. Reports of cryptocurrency and forex investment scams increased by nearly 250 per cent in 2017-18, from 530 to nearly 1,850. The scams work by criminals promoting get-rich-quick online trading platforms through social media. Posts often use fake celebrity endorsements and images of luxury items like expensive watches and cars. Beat the scammers: These then link to professional-looking websites where consumers are persuaded to invest. Often investors are led to believe their first investment has successfully returned a profit, and are then enticed to invest more money or introduce friends in return for greater profits. But the returns stop, the customer account is closed, and the scammer disappears with no further contact. 'Anyone handing over their hard-earned cash should make sure they understand what they're getting into, they've checked it's a legitimate investment, and not rely on hype and excitement from friends or social media. 'Investing isn't a get-rich-quick scheme - and anything that uses fear of missing out or requires you to invest before thinking is best to be avoided.' Those considering an investment to check the following for tips on how to avoid investment fraud at www.fca.org.uk/scamsmart. Scammers can be very convincing so always do your own research into any firm you are considering investing with, to make sure that they are the real deal. 'It's vital that people carry out the necessary checks to ensure that an investment they're considering is legitimate. UK consumers are being increasingly targeted by crypto asset-related investment scams. Certain crypto assets, like Bitcoin and Ether (also known as cryptocurrencies), are not regulated in the UK. This means that buying, selling or transferring these crypto-assets falls outside FCA remit. The same is true for the operation of a cryptocurrency exchange. However, some types of crypto-asset products may be or may involve regulated investments depending on their nature and how they are structured. For example, firms that sell regulated investments with an underlying crypto asset element may need to be authorised by the FCA to do so. In recent months, the FCA claims it has received an increasing number of reports about crypto-asset investment scams. Some of them may involve regulated activities, others don’t, but all use similar tactics. How crypto-asset investment scams work Cryptoasset fraudsters tend to advertise on social media – often using the images of celebrities or well-known individuals to promote cryptocurrency investments. In this case, laughably they said KaratBit was endorsed by Barak Obama’s sister. Who is she and what does she know about cryptocurrencies and blockchain? The ads then link to professional-looking websites. Consumers are then persuaded to make investments with the firm using cryptocurrencies or traditional currencies. The firms operating the scams are usually based outside the UK but will claim to have a UK presence, often a prestigious City of London address. Scam firms can manipulate software to distort prices and investment returns. They may scam people into buying the non-existent crypto asset. They are also known to suddenly close consumers’ online accounts and refuse to transfer the funds to them or ask for more money before the funds can be transferred. Action Fraud has also issued a warning on cryptocurrency scams. How to protect yourself Be wary of adverts online and on social media promising high returns on investments in a crypto asset or crypto asset-related products. Most firms advertising and selling investments in crypto-assets are not authorised by the FCA. This means that if you invest in certain crypto assets you will not have access to the Financial Ombudsman Service or the Financial Services Compensation Scheme if things go wrong. The FCA doesn’t regulate crypto assets like Bitcoin or Ether which are vastly the most recognized cryptocurrencies, let alone KBC, they do regulate certain crypto-asset derivatives (such as futures contracts, CFDs and options), as well as those crypto assets I would consider securities. A firm must be authorised by FCA to advertise or sell these products in the UK – check FCA Register to make sure the firm is authorised. You can also check the FCA Warning List of firms to avoid. You should do further research on the product you are considering and the firm you are considering investing with. Check with Companies House to see if the firm is registered as a UK company and for directors' names. To see if others have posted any concerns, search online for the firm's name, directors' names and the product you are considering. If you’ve already decided you want to invest in gold, this might not be a bad company to side with. But if you’re just looking for an opportunity to earn a sustainable income and become financially independent, there are better options out there.
Melvin leaves the Light of Esha to begin his time as a Fighter Pilot. --- After our meeting with fleet command Captain Akanksha and I retired to the Light of Esha. The captain came back because she felt most comfortable aboard her ship, and I came back because I had nowhere else to go. It was well into the night cycle on the first day of leave Admiral Balkier had granted the crew when I detected a login on Gavrel’s personal console.
Gavrel was no doubt spending time with his children and Mate and the rest of the crew had no reason to use Gavrel’s terminal when they had the exact same interface on their own terminals. I checked the security feeds and found them mysteriously disabled for the past 15 minutes. I could have just asked who it was, but I was fairly certain she would be more impressed if I intuited her identity.
#> Hello Spymaster Yefrit, I had expected you sooner. >> The Admiral’s meeting went on for a while after you were dismissed. #> I was under the impression the admiralty had no need of what I had to offer. >> Devorah has her priorities and I have mine. #> The technological bounty of humanity comes with a price. >> Before we discuss price I will require a demonstration #> Cracking or Encrypting? >> How about we go with cracking? I am uploading a series of encrypted files we copied from a Borja operative.
I took one look at the bundled data and recognized a similar book Cypher syntax to Paz’s attempt at cryptography. Instead of the first number ranging from 1 to 1000 the first number ranged from 1 to 24, the second number ranged from 1 to 35, and the last ranged from 1 to 25. Poetry perhaps? I decided to plumb Yefrit for more information.
#> So have your people cracked this, or am I doing your job for you? >> We have some ideas from the context but haven’t invested the resources to break this yet.
That meant they probably cross referenced this against all known Borja poetry works and had drawn a blank.
#> Give me half an hour.
At least the range of values in the data set was small enough I might be able to brute force it in that time. The Light of Esha had a Yaneth to Borja translation matrix. So I started small, looking for pronouns to get a sample of the decode key. There was an internal consistency for the pronouns across encoded files, so I could assume one source. I was glad the Borja were as lax as the Yaneth when it came to cryptography. I worked my way through the most common words in the Borja lexicon getting more matches until I had a pretty decent idea of the words in the Borja poem that served as the cypher’s key. It even rhymed in the original language. I ran the numbers of the encrypted files through the poem. With exception of a few misspellings the Borja files opened up to me. It was a series of reports from a Borja spy on a High Lord’s holdings. Ship construction, troop movements, and gossip about which officers could be turned and for what price. Thankfully the spy hadn’t bothered coming up with stupid code names for his subject like Paz had. It had taken me 26 minutes working at 100% capacity on the Light of Esha’s computer core.
#> Done, the decrypted files are in the same folder. There is also a Borja poem about “The Glory of the Hunt” if you need to decrypt anymore files from this source. >> Splendid let me verify based on what I know of the source.
She took her time going through the treasure trove on new intel before copying to her storage device.
>> OK you have the goods, we can talk price. #> I want to move the Yaneth fleet to a war footing so that instead of weathering the next culling we profit from it. >> That is beyond my power. #> That is beyond your power or that is beyond how you are willing to use your power? >> As far as you are concerned it doesn’t matter. #> Very well what CAN you offer me? >> A top of the line Computer core miniaturized to fit in a fighter, an up to date list of Borja High Lords and the delicate web of loyalties that prevent them from collapsing into civil war, and a promise of support for Balkier or Husting when the time comes to choose a new fleet admiral. #> So instigating a Borja Civil war is not completely out of the question? >> What happens in Admiralty meetings, stays in the Admiralty meetings. #> On my end what would would help your people the most? I have ways of automatically encrypting and decrypting data to make remote communication more secure. I can also teach your people how to use computers power to break these book cyphers the Yaneth and Borja are so fond of. >> My people in the field can’t bring custom software with them lest it fall into Borja hands. This computer driven decryption intrigues me I will have my best crypto analysts contact you on your new assignment. #> I take it that Admiral Hustingh has accepted my application to the Fighter Corps? >> Sadly yes, I would have much rather you joined my Cryptography team full time, but killing three Drakar in an unarmed scout ship has brought you a lot of attention. For your sake I hope you are not exaggerating your abilities. A pilot’s life may be glamour but it is often short. #> Glamorous or not the coming months will need pilots more than Cryptography experts. >> Keep safe out there Melvin I expect a lot from you. #> Likewise Spymaster.
--- Our conversation log quickly vanished and I watched that security feeds establish themselves one after another in the direction of the airlock. I was tempted to activate my body to catch a glimpse of the enigmatic Spymaster, but decided not to risk offending my new ally. Sure enough the next morning a pair of technicians showed up with an active computer core. Akanksha was a little upset by their sudden arrival. “He is a valuable member of my crew, you can’t just cart him off like a barrel of emergency rations!” Akanksha yelled at the intruders in to her domain. “I’m sorry Ma’am but orders say…” “I don’t care what your orders are Melvin is a living being, he has the right to choose where he lives.” My captain continued to brow beat the poor technicians. I unfolded my avatar and stepped in before Akanksha did something damaging to her future career. “It is OK, I chose this remember? These fine Yaneth are taking me to start my training as a fighter pilot.” I swiveled to address the two technicians “Right?” “Yes of course Custodian Melvin Sir,” one of the techs managed to fumble out. I turned an inquisitive ear towards Akanksha. “This is so sudden Melvin, I had hoped you would stay on the ship a few more days, share more of your people’s culture with us.” Akanksha said hopefully “We both know what is coming,” I replied, straying as close to the forbidden subject of the imminent culling in the presence of these Technicians as I dare. “I have sent my goodbyes already.” Akanksha was a little upset by this. “I keep forgetting you have only been directly interacting with real Yaneth for about a week,” she admonished me, “We prefer to say our goodbyes in person, not have out friends slink off in the night with just a note. Were the humans not like this as well?” I thought back to my parents, my brothers, and Ann. In reality they has all died before I was born, but they had left terabytes of Video messages for me to watch as I grew up. In a way it was the closest thing they could do to an in person farewell. “You are right and I am sorry,” I apologized to Akanksha, my ears low in remorse. “I will arrange a video conference as soon as they get back on the Light of Esha.” “Work on those social skills Melvin, if you are going to live among us, you should learn to interact with us beyond just manipulating our inner desires towards your end goals.” “Yes Captain,” I moved towards a salute but was cut off by Akanksha wrapping my physical avatar in a hug. I hugged back until the moment had passed and she backed off. “Ok technicians,” she said with a slight sob, “hook up to the network. Let’s get this over with.” The technicians did their job and I felt the presence of another computer plugged into the Light of Esha. I stretched myself into the new device, testing its storage and processing powers. In many ways it was superior to the Light of Esha’s processing core. It had multiple redundant systems, its own power supply, was heavily shielded against radiation and kinetic shock. The processing and storage was comparable to that of the Light of Esha’s core, but I would no longer need to share processing power with the ship’s normal functions. Spymaster Yefrit had kept her word and gifted me a computer core that was top of the line for Yaneth manufacturing capacity. What is more Yefrit had seen fit to hook a medium range radio transmitter and receiver directly to the core so that I would not be reliant on co-opting the sensors to operate my Avatar. I lay my physical avatar down so as to not damage it during the transfer. Then announced to the room “this will do nicely.” I expected word would get through to Yefrit that I approved of my new home and I wanted her to know I was grateful for her efforts. I modified all the chat programs on my Yaneth friend’s terminals to work through the fleet text mail system, directed to my new computer core. I made one final check that the Light of Esha’s computer would be fine in my absence and flowed into the new computer core. It took a few minutes to get my programming and the human archives I wanted transferred. I grabbed the hidden archives containing the holocausts, the questionable medical experiments, and other less desirable activities humanity had indulged in. To be sure I had the only copy of this toxic material I wiped the hidden folder on the Light of Esha, before activating my physical avatar from my new home. “How does it feel,” Akanksha asked her worried face appearing above the “face” of my communication device. “Different, but good,” I lied. I had gone from a planetary sensor grid, to a scout ship’s sensor grid, to just the feedback from the physical avatar. It felt like my world was growing smaller and smaller with each step. Much like Alice in Wonderland I constantly shrinking to fit my new circumstances. I hoped it would not be too long before they would hook me up to a fighter so I could expand my senses like I did in the asteroid chase. I rose more elegantly than I had before, the increased processing and purpose built hardware gave me far better control over the physical avatar than the jury rigged sensor grid had been capable of. “It is time I got going,” I said as I gave the captain a salute. She returned the increasingly familiar gesture. I disconnected the cable connection I had used to transfer my consciousness with my physical avatar. Akanksha and the technicians were perhaps afraid of accidentally damaging me and looked at the connector like it was a poisonous snake. “I assume there is some sort of shuttle we need to take to my new assignment?” I hinted to the two technicians. “Err, yes right this way.” I was grateful for my guides and the dolly they used to haul my new home around in. Given the light gravity the Yaneth like to keep their ships at I suspect I could just barely maneuver the bulky computer core through the hallways of the Scout carrier. The Shuttle set to depart for the Fighter Group was apparently on the other side of the ship. I found myself the center of attention of a lot of curious Yaneth eyes. Aspects of human culture were starting to sneak into Yaneth youth culture. I heard the names Marlin, Nemo, and Dory incorporated into a children’s memory game. I think I even spotted a Yaneth woman wearing a variation of Karmina’s toga. The technicians beamed with pride when they realized the amount of attention our little procession was getting We eventually arrived at our destination, a docking tube to the shuttle I would take to whichever ship the Yaneth use to train pilots. To my surprise there were already passengers aboard this shuttle. While the technicians were busy securing my Computer Core I moved my Avatar to buckle itself in next to one of the passengers. “Wow, the rumors were true,” came the startle response of the young Yanethi as I sat down next to him. “What rumor would that be?” I asked cocking an inquisitive ear. “Erm… well I am sure you would know more about it than me.” The young Yaneth fumbled out. “I know what I know, I want to know what you have heard.” I gave him a smile with my borrowed face, and perked my ears forward trying to demonstrate a genuine interest. “My younger brother is Friends with the Eagle of Kalador’s children and he said one of the scout ships made contact with an ancient alien civilization. One that taught computers how to think. He said that one of those thinking computers came back to the fleet and wearing an EVS and spoke to the council of Admirals. I thought they were making stuff up again but here you are.” “Gavrel’s children and your brother were not making stuff up this time. My name is Melvin by the way. What is yours?” “Xishas. It is an honor to meet you,” the young Yaneth eagerly replied. We chatted for a while about my home world and culture. I managed to ask him some questions about life in Home fleet. It turns out that the Yaneth were in desperate need of bodies to fill their Fighter Corps. Signing bonuses and promises of private quarters after the completion of your first tour were used to entice young Yaneth like Xishas. I suspect the latter came with the implication that it would be easier to seduce a mate if you had a private quarters to carry out the genetic exchange organics needed to reproduce. Xishas certainly spent a lot of time focused on that aspect of his future in the Fighter Corps. Our conversation was drawing the attention of other shuttle passengers. They marveled at the idea that I was over 100 years old and would volunteer for the Fighter Corps. Most of the aspiring pilots told me they were 16 to 20 earth years old. Which was still fairly young even among the Yaneth. A lot of them talked about their plans for the future. How they would use their bonus or their training to land desirable positions elsewhere in the fleet. Eventually the shuttle’s captain ordered everyone to their seat and announced our destination would be the training ship Sularis. The flight over was uneventful, but I got a chance to see several of the Home fleets ships, the Light of Esha was in incredibly good shape compared to some of the Yaneth Vessels that were just limping along. It made sense that a scout ship had to operate without support for a year at a time would be in top repair, but to see the sorry state of some of these ships only reminded me how desperate the situation was. As the shuttle pulled up to its destination I was grateful that Sularis seemed to be in good repair. All its compartments were lit, and as far as I could tell pressurized. There was a small docking bay large enough for a single fighter to enter and leave. Unfortunately the Shuttle was too large to use it so we ended up matching speed with another docking tube. Xishas and I, along with the rest of pilot candidates filed out of the shuttle in a semi orderly manner. I passed the two technicians who were struggling with the straps they had used to keep my Computer Core secure during our flight. I gave them a grateful nod as I passed, but was swept onwards before I could offer my assistance. Stern faced instructors shepherded us into a small auditorium. After everyone had a chance to settle a heavily scarred female Yaneth limped up to the front of the auditorium. Half of her left ear was missing as well as part of her arm below the elbow. “Welcome new cadets to the Yaneth Fighter Corps,” she began. “My name is Captain Vashna and I am the head instructor aboard the Sularis and will be your commanding officer until you graduate into full flight service. The Home Fleet is grateful for every one of you who would volunteer for this dangerous duty, but it is my job to inform you that the road ahead will not be easy. The Borja are out there and extremely dangerous.” She paused and looked regretfully at her missing hand. “We are entrusted with the defense of the fleet from fast moving threats like torpedoes and light attack craft. It is a duty everyone who wears the insignia of the Fighter Corps takes very seriously. Our craft contain one or two Yanethi lives but every fighter and torpedo that gets past us can kill hundreds of our brothers, sisters, fathers, and mothers. If you are not 100% committed to the defense of the fleet, please go back to the shuttle you arrived on. We will now take roll call and give you your room assignments. Please report to your quarters after you have been called.” She proceeded to rifle through a list of names and room numbers. I stored away all of this information in my new server’s copious memory. My name was absent from the roll call and eventually I was sitting alone in the empty auditorium seating. “Melvin of Earth” Vashna finally called out. “You are a special case. I don’t know, and I don’t want to know what you did, but certain elements of the Admiralty have shown a particular interest in you. You have been assigned separate quarters with two non pilots. I have been made aware that your unique biology or lack thereof is going to need special accommodation.” She rotated her ears back disdainfully. “I don’t like special cases, and certainly don’t like having to suddenly make room in this class for a non Yaneth.” She continued. “Keep a low profile Melvin. I will not stand for any showboating interfering with the instruction of the other students. Am I clear?” “Yes Ma’am” “Get to H-37, I do not want to hear your name until graduation.” I gave her a salute then left. If she took offense to the gesture I did not stay to find out. The hallways outside the auditorium were deserted. I had no idea where my computer core was relative to my avatar. I had no access to the security cameras and their blank lenses offered me no knowledge. I stared at one, wondering if there was any intelligence on the other side. As if in response I felt my computer core connect to another network. It was vast and alive, even more so than the Light of Esha. It would be hard for me to steal processing time and go unnoticed. Most of the processing entailed vast libraries of video and text data being shunted to different terminals. There was also several simulators running real time physics calculations and 3D rendering algorithms. Of immediate concern was the Grid of security cameras and hallway layout. I eventually found the ship’s floor plan and security grid. A comfortable voyeuristic capacity flowed over my being. I instantly found H-37 and discovered “H” meant hangar. The camera logs showed those two technicians had entered the room with my mainframe and had not exited. I plotted a course through the winding hallways to the room. A short while after I had departed the auditorium, Captain Vashna stormed into the hallway, looked around briefly with a confused look then went about her business. Had I not been able to access the ships layout she probably would have ran into me wandering the halls, and it looked like she was geared up to give me another stern talking to. I eventually found my way to the hanger bay, and received confused looks from several of the maintenance personnel. One of them confronted me with a mirthful lift to his ears, “Are you lost Sir? I haven’t seen you around before and new pilot trainees aren’t allowed down here until their fourth week.” “My room assignment is H-37, it was the last room assignment Captain Vashna handed out.” I offered helpfully. “That is where the two new techs from central got setup.” Another mechanic chipped in helpfully. “Right you are,” said the first. “Look son, I don’t know what your deal is with that screen for a face and all; but it looks like you have upset some powerful people. The instructors like playing a game on new recruits where they hand them room assignments. Most get a helpful guide to their quarters, but they leave the last one stumbling around a new ship making a fool of themselves. It is always political crap I don’t want to get involved in. I’m just saying keep a low profile. Your room is over there.” He pointed out what looked to be a supply closet at the far end of the hangar. I, of course, already knew its location, but thanked the mechanic anyway. --- Seeing as how there were probably two technicians lurking in the supply closet I did the polite thing and knocked. The door opened and I was relieved to find my Computing Core securely lashed to a bulkhead in a reasonably spacious room, by Yaneth Fleet standards at least. A pair of Hammocks were suspended from a different bulkhead and there seemed to be a lot more bits of computer technology than a pair of laborers would need. “Ahh Melvin’s avatar, good to see you again.” said the technician who opened the door. “Glad to see that old witch Vashna didn’t catch you up in her game.” Replied the other. I stepped into their space before the Hangar technicians could overhear anything incriminating. It was starting to make sense. Yiffrit wouldn’t entrusted me and the shiny bit of hardware I currently reside on to run of the mill grease monkeys. These two must be my handlers and perhaps the students I was to train in the human methods of encryption and decryption. Their sudden change in tone and demeanor indicated they had been play acting as ignorant laborers in front of personnel from Scout and Fighter Corps. I guess, since I was considered an intelligence assets now, I was one of them and they could drop the act. I ran a quick memory trace and pulled up the name tags on their jumpsuits that were now stowed away. “Ranus and Jodric, thank you for taking such good care of my Computer Core. Do you prefer Ranus and Jodric or does Yifrit have special code names picked out for you two?” I asked raising an inquisitive ear. “She warned us you were perceptive. Ranus and Jodric is fine, those are the names our mother still calls us, I don’t see the point in changing them now.” Ranus said. “Besides all that fancy codename garbage is for field agent. There are not enough credits in the fleet to convince me to go planetside.” Jodric chipped in. “You said it brother.” “So how do you want to play this? Do you have jobs here or were we just given this closet out of professional courtesy between Yifrit and the Fighter Corps?” I asked. “Sadly there is no love between the Fighter Corps and Intelligence division. We get blamed every time a bunch of fighter jocks end up dead from a Borja Interdiction. It is not like we want to see them dead. The Borja just don’t always leave their ambush plans where our agents can find them.” Jodric said. “What is worse the whole fleet grieves when one of the pilots get killed, but when one of our field agents stop reporting in no one outside our service sheds a tear.” Ranus concluded bitterly. “Officially, we are here to configure guidance systems, but that is grease monkey work and we had our people ship ‘special’ guidance systems to the Sularis so that shouldn’t take too long if you get what I am saying.” Ranus said. He had of course not used the word ‘monkey’, but the Yanethi homeworld had a similar creature whose name was still used as a pejorative for certain forms of work. “The grease monkeys don’t mess with with us bit monkeys so long as we don’t mess with them.” Jordic added. “Can your work be done during the ship’s night cycle?” I asked. “Sure boss, what did you have in mind?” Jordic replied. “I don’t need to sleep, but do need to keep up the appearance of a pilot candidate during the day. So I attend classes and whatever exercises the Fighter Corps require during the day, and teach you two as much as I can about code breaking at night.” I proposed. “Works for us,” my two roommates replied in unison. --- I checked the computer network to see where new pilot cadets were expected to be over the next few days. None of the academic work began until tomorrow but the designated meal time for my class would be starting in a few minutes. The security feed even showed some senior students leading groups from the shuttle to the student’s dining area. Many of whom had changed out of their old clothes and were wearing cadet uniforms. I asked my bunk mates “Do you know where I can get a hold of a cadet uniform in this size?” while gesturing to the EVS that made up my physical presence. “Yifrit was one step ahead of us and had this thrown in with a shipment of our guidance systems.” Jordic said as he pulled a hastily retailored cadet’s uniform. Parts of it were held together by tape and good intentions, but at least it would fit over my bulky EVS. I was glad that I would not need to use the bathroom in this. I am not sure it would survive being taken off and put back on. “When you get a chance to report back to the spymaster, please pass on my gratitude. I have some cadet bonding to do.” I said as I left. --- The feeding area was full of laughter and new friendships being created. I silently cursed Vashna for trying to deny me such an opportunity. Not needing food I grabbed a food tray and some silverware and headed to the dining area. Xishas recognized me and waved me over. Grateful for the invitation I joined him and a group of other Yaneth at the table. “Melvin, thank the great maker you are here at last. I was just telling my new roommates, Torbin and Chambi,” Xishas indicated two other male cadets seated near him, “that the scout division finally made contact with a technologically advanced species that isn’t trying to enslave us.” “The admiralty seems to a different opinion on how ‘advance’ my people are. However you are right on the enslavement part. My people rejected that idea a few millennia ago.” We also for the most part kicked the bucket a few millennia ago as well, but they didn’t need to know that. “But you are a non organic consciousness, aren't you? Surly that technology could be used to save countless lives.” Torbin asked. “I am a single consciousness that can only be in one place at a time. The Admirals want legions of willing fighters. Before they would consider helping my people.” I said trying to plant the seeds of resentment to the current admiralty. “So why are you here?” Chambi piped up. “Much the same reason as you I imagine. To make a difference, save some lives, earn enough recognition that my ideas will be respected.” I responded as if my ambitions were completely normal. “No way, I am here because a Fighter Corps uniform patch is a fast track ticket to the finest wine, women, and song the home fleet has to offer. The ladies love a void pilot.” Xishas chimed in. His two cohorts nodded in agreement. “That is what I said ‘Earn enough recognition that my ideas will be accepted,’ in your case the idea is that you are an ideal mating material, and in mine the idea is that my species is worth preserving.” I added helpfully. I would have continued but two female cadets with uniform pips indicating they had completed basic flight instruction abruptly sat down at our table. “What's all this about ‘ideal mates’ and ‘fast track to the finest wine, women, and song’ I keep hearing about?” one asked. “Yeah I could really use a good woman right now,” said the other while making an obscene gesture with her fingers and tongue. The three boys at the table wilted at the pair of upper-class-women who had barged their way into our conversation. “So what do senior students such as yourself do when you are not tormenting junior cadets?” I asked. “Study, try to put in high scores in the simulator, but mostly torment the new guys.” The boisterous one said while pinching Xishas’ cheek. “They are so cute when filled with terror.” “No hard feelings, we are all on the same side, or at least will be once we graduate and move on to our carriers.” Said the less boisterous one. “I am Dalia and the vulgar one is Farit. You must be Melvin.” “Did the ears give it away?” I asked while rotating my ear servos in a way impossible for Yaneth Biology to replicate. That got a laugh from the entire table. After Dalia had regained her composure “We were supposed to find you and lead you to the Hangar Deck after you had an appropriate time to wander about. Where did you go?” “To the Hangar deck, I met up with my roomates, a pair of bit monkeys as they like to be called.” I replied. “Who did you piss off to land that berthing assignment?” Farit asked. “Fleet Admiral Devorah I think.” At that admission all my table mates hastily made excuses to be somewhere else. I had not realized the ire of the Fleet Admiral would reach down to the cadet level of the Fighter Corps. This is probably what Akanksha meant by the admiralty complicating life. Still she had managed to hold the respect of her peers and subordinates under similar circumstances, so there was hope for me yet. Ironically I needed no food but was surrounded by the mostly full food trays of my recently departed table mates. I did some artful rearranging and went around the other tables offering the leftovers to several fighter cadets who had finished with their food and were casting envious glances at their neighbor’s trays. I hoped a little generosity would curry favor among my fellow cadets. --- I retreated back to my quarters after dumping the remaining food off on my fellow cadets. Ranus and Jodric were there fiddling with some hardware. As I entered I asked the two brothers, “Hey guys I promise I won’t do this often but could I have some privacy? I need to make a personal call.” “Sure thing boss, it is coming up on our meal period anyway.” Jodric replied. They finished up with their current work and stowed it away before leaving the room. I knew they had other ways of monitoring my conversation, but emptying the room was mostly for appearance sake. I hacked my way in to the Sularis’ long range communication hardware and set up a video call with the Light of Esha. Rufo was on watch when the signal was acknowledged. There was a few light milliseconds lag between our two ships, so I doubted he would notice the delay in natural conversation. “Melvin! I wondered where you got off to. Did you secure a place for your people in the fleet?” Rufo asked with an attentive lift to his ears. “No, just secured a spot on the Sularis for myself and the physical avatar you and Karmina made for me.” I gestured back to the cramped and dirty living quarters I was sharing with the brothers. “The Sularis, that is a Fighter Corps training ship. What are you doing over there? You are not up to anything dangerous are you?” Rufo asked with concern showing on his face. “I am always up to something a little dangerous, you should know that about me by now.” I chided Rufo with a sly smile. “I am serious Melvin, Karmina and I miss you. Gavrel’s kids want to know all about you and your people. Even Illana and Paz have been getting nosey.” “Call them all in then. I want to see all of you.” Rufo activated a series of buttons and spoke into his station’s microphone: “All hands we have a pending video conference on the bridge.” The crew slowly filtered into the bridge. Karmina and Akanksha beamed with delight at seeing my face again. Paz initially had a look of horror when he saw my face on the main screen but the familiar communication interface calmed him down almost immediately. Illana seemed pleased to see me but a shadow of sorrow passed over Gavrel’s face as he took in my surroundings. He, no doubt, was familiar with the sounds of a functioning flight deck. If this sorrow was for his lost youth or his part in condemning me to the early grave that awaited most who join the Fighter Corps I couldn’t tell. I apologized for leaving so suddenly. Then fielded several questions about why I was now in a Fighter Corps Cadet uniform, how the meeting with the admiralty went, and human culture in general. I took comfort basking in their familiar presence, and I hoped Balkier would not ship them off on a scouting assignment any time soon. They all seemed ecstatic about the fragments of human culture I had left them. Even Paz joined in with an exaggerated Inspector Clouseau impression. Gavrel was practically begging for a dubbed version of Finding Nemo. His voice was a bit raspy from what I assumed were repeated narrations of the fish based adventure story. I promised I would get that sent to his family at my earliest convenience. I chose to omit how Vashna had chosen me to be the cadet classes’ goat or how my accidental burst of honesty about being on the Fleet Admiral naughty list had made me a pariah on my first day. The conversation eventually wrapped up and I thanked each of them for helping me get where I was. Karmina had her arm around Rufo for most of the conversation and I strongly suspected they were spending every waking moment while not on duty in each other’s presence. Rufo’s uniform had developed quite a few more grease stains that it had since last I saw it. He was maneuvering for a kiss as the call ended. A few minutes later the two brothers returned from their expedition to the dining area. Once they had settled I began my lesson on linguistic analysis. --- Author's Note: My writing time has been cut back to the weekend, so here is my Monday release. I would promise guns glory, and space battles, but a lot of the feedback has been very positive on the character focused end of things. The chapters are getting longer. I try and keep things down to 12 pages in google docs, but my earlier decision to call each chapter by "I have become" is biting me in the butt. Each stage in Melvin's evolution is getting longer. I am tempted to break very long chapters into several shorter ones, but I don't like writers who leave their readers on cliff hangers, and I don't want to become one myself. Thanks again to proof readeru/Lostfolfor the invaluable feedback and motivation. Thanks tou/Lepidolite_Mica, u/BetsyCro, u/Exthalion, u/ErrantVector, u/teodzero, andu/Brimicidalfor catching errors post publishing. You guys are awesome. [I Have Become Chapter List] Previous Chapter: [I Have Become a Curiosity] Next Chapter: [I Have Become a Pilot Part 1]
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- 5,500 XPOS Dispatched already to 25 countries. - Tested over a two day period in the Historical first ever crypto mass event with "Ultra Taiwan Music Festival" with 30,000 + attendees, went flawlessly, (see videos on Pundix Official YouTube Channel). - 7,000 More XPOS going out soon. - 300,000 XPASS dispatched. - 60,000 + Transactions over the XPOS. - 20 + Top Crypto Exchanges. - 45 + Events attended. - 150 + Team members. - 7 Head Offices globally.
Function X Blockchain – A game Changer:
https://i.redd.it/5ibzoexntpi21.jpg The f(x) (short for Function X) blockchain under current test environments, each XPOS is an f(x) node; all data from the XPOS will be fully encrypted and stored in f(x) low level IPFS. Our IPFS is one that is specially designed for XPOS, f(x) and other smart devices. The f(x) public ledger will record all transactions, and the chain deploys sharding and PBFT. At Pundi X, we believe that open source is the way to go and to strengthen the blockchain community. We will gradually enable all of our operating system and f(x) chain’s code to be open source. It will be free for all Dapp software and hardware manufacturers to develop products for the f(x) ecosystem, hence achieving true decentralization. Let’s all work together and re-engineer a decentralized world. 10x for Speed; Visa can run 7,000–20,000 transactions-per-second (“TPS”). Any blockchain that offers small multiples of speed improvement is unlikely to displaced a tried-and-tested system like Visa. A 10X increase means 200,000K TPS has to be achieved. Our upcoming blockchain called Function X (fx for short), we have to make sure we are comparable if not faster, at 10X it is at least 200,000 TPS, not just on paper, but in real application. Sharding depends heavily on the availability of nodes. Confirmation processes increase by an order of magnitude when you increase node counts, we are already deploying the XPOS which will act as nodes. 10x for Scaling; Scalability in a restaurant means how fast can you serve your meals, the faster you can scale, the more business you can have. Therefore, companies like McDonald’s spend a lot of effort shortening the time between ordering and checkout to serve its customers. Scalability in blockchain is similar: it depends on the code (how fast can the burgers be flipped) and also nodes (how many cashiers can confirm the order). So whose code is the best? We will only know when proven. And what about nodes? The blockchain with the largest nodes will prevail. Currently Ethereum has the most nodes, but maybe not for long. 10x for Consensus; And what about nodes? The blockchain with the largest nodes will prevail. Currently Ethereum has the most nodes, but maybe not for long. With our minimum plan to roll out 100,000 XPOS in three years, we will be able to scale up transaction numbers significantly as the number of XPOS devices increases. Can we do much more than 200,000 TPS? Let’s analyze: Sharding is a process of dividing a global network into pieces of a local network. Each local network would then take charge of two-thirds consensus so that a particular transaction is verified in the local network and then broadcast to the global network. Five Pillars of Function X Blockchain;
Fx Operation System - (ROM) Android-modified blockchain-enabled operating system. Users can switch seamlessly between fx blockchain and regular everyday android mode.
FXTP - (Web Protocol). Decentralized transmission protocol (P2P) and similar to https.
Docker - Open Source platform for developers to build, ship, and run distributed applications (DApps).
IPFS - Storage of various contents.
Public Blockchain - A High performance and secure public blockchain.
The XPhone, and the first true blockchain phone call, we demonstrated to thousands that we had a new protocol for communication that could take blockchain beyond the world of financial transfers. The X phone is powered by Function X OS which is based off the Android OS 9.0, so there is a backward compatibility with any Android apps. Blockchain-based calling and messaging can be toggled on and off on the phone operating system, which builds upon Android 9.0. On the blockchain mode, the services in the XPhone can operate completely independently of centralized carriers. Users can route phone calls, messages, and data via blockchain nodes without the need for centralized service providers. The XPhone is in fact the first mobile phone that can run completely on a decentralized ecosystem powering telephony, messaging, and data transmission. The XPhone itself significantly expands the use of blockchain technology beyond financial transfers. Every XPhone is also a node on the network to contribute to the operation of the blockchain ecosystem. Content and connectivity are organized in a distributed, node-to-node manner. https://i.redd.it/ne3iufycqqi21.png - Every device in the Function X ecosystem will be a node and each will have its own address and private key, uniquely linked to their node names, not unlike traditional URL and IP addresses. - The OS can be overlayed to any existing Android devices without any compromises and compliment as a node to the function X blockchain. - Using a new DApp published on Function X, Zac hailed a New York City cabbie from midtown Manhattan to Central Park via a smart contract executed on Function X. The taxi order was both conducted and recorded on-chain and by-passing any ride-hailing service via XPhone. - In the browser, you may browse the traditional Internet via HTTP or use the blockchain Internet via FXTP. - In f(x) OS, users are able to switch seamlessly between two modes. The blockchain mode allows a user to be connected to the blockchain - everything which you do in this mode like texting, calling, taking photos, browsing, etc. will be transmitted via the blockchain. In the traditional mode, it is like any other Android phone. - You can develop DApps for X Play Store and regular apps for Google Play Store. Note: Final design and specs are subject to change. The FX blockchain: Giving data control back to users and creators. “What this all means is that data control can and must be given back to users,” said Pundi X Founder and CEO Zac Cheah. “Telecommunications and Internet companies have derived tremendous value from controlling data. By decentralizing apps, we can put this data onto a smart contract, effectively giving control back to creators and to users”. “Much of what we call peer-to-peer or ‘decentralized’ services continue to be built upon centralized networks. We are changing that,” added Cheah. Mobile devices as nodes; “Scalability in blockchain is derived from the number and geographic spread of nodes. It is clear how achieving a critical mass in terms of scale will require something with a high utility for people. The XPhone thus has the potential to establish a large global pool of nodes,” said Pitt Huang, co-founder and CTO of Pundi X. “And with Function X offering people the choice to be independent of a centralized communications network we’ve created a new use, a high and universal utility for blockchain. In turn, this will give life to a network large enough to support better scale, throughput, and new potential applications, plus true decentralization that has so far eluded blockchain.” YouTube in-depth close up videos;
Major Partners: -American Chamber of Commerce Korea, AMCHAM is the largest foreign chamber in Korea with around 1,800 individual members from almost 900 member companies with diverse interests and substantial participation in the Korean economy. Their partners includes, MacDonald’s, Star Bucks, Hyundai, United Airlines, Citi, Hawaiian Airlines, MetLife, Ford, Honeywell, Johnson & Johnson, Bayer, Cisco, HUB, Nike, Oracle, Kelly, Philip Morris, Hyosung, Cigna, Kim & Change, Pfizer Korea, and many more, see link below; http://www.amchamkorea.org/?ckattempt=3 -Ebooc (Government UEA) Ebooc and Pundi X will provide several other applications for consumers such as making retail payments; paying for government services, fees and fines; utilities and bills; telecommunication bills and school fees on POS devices running a stable, digital equivalent of traditional fiat currencies in the region. The move brings our world-leading, blockchain-based XPOS technology, XPASS card and e-wallet to the Gulf, Middle East and North Africa region for the first time with Ebooc as the official partner under the terms of a strategic partnership agreement as executed. Additional Back information about the Founder of Ebooc: Entrepreneur & Senior UAE Government Official with deep Government experience of over 20 years. From his current role as Assistant Undersecretary, Industrial Development Sector at Ministry of Economy, UAE, Abdalla has been able to participate in policy-making and planning strategy for ministry of Economy and oversee the operations and major projects within the industrial sector. Developing action plans and programs for the industrial sector, overall supervision of the industrial licenses issued by the ministry, General supervision of Institutions Support Department, which specializes in conducting necessary studies for the development of industrial exports. Regulations and specifications of Foreign Affairs in coordination with stakeholders Prior to this was the CEO strategic planning & affairs at Emirates Post Group was on the Board of Directors of Wall Street Exchange Chairman of the Executive Committee ; Vice Chairman of the Emirates Marketing & Promotion Corp. Board Member of the Emirates Courier Services – Empost. https://medium.com/pundix/ann-pundi-x-technology-to-debut-in-the-gulf-and-middle-east-5b7651b4bd14 -NEM, (Deal to deploy additional 20k XPOS units) A commitment to use NEM's blockchain technology to produce 20,000 of the world's first NEM-based POS terminals, called NEM XPOS. To foster this project, we completed a private allocation totalling US $ 17 million (USD) on April 5, 2018. The fund will be used for technical integration and production of at least 20,000 XPOS NEMs over a three-year period. https://medium.com/pundix/aloca%C3%A7%C3%A3o-privada-de-17m-usd-%C3%A9-conclu%C3%ADda-para-o-nem-xpos-5a7074b39b5c -Ubivelox, they have become an international innovator in the development of smart cards, mobile communications and blockchain (ranked 6th largest in the world). The two companies will work together on XPOS and XPASS technology development, security and market deployment, which will not only facilitate the promotion of Pundi X in Korea, but also help accelerate the layout in the global market. https://medium.com/pundix/%E9%9F%A9%E5%9B%BD%E4%B8%8A%E5%B8%82%E5%85%AC%E5%8F%B8ubivelox%E4%B8%8Epundi-x%E5%BB%BA%E7%AB%8B%E6%88%98%E7%95%A5%E5%90%88%E4%BD%9C%E4%BC%99%E4%BC%B4%E5%85%B3%E7%B3%BB-91f3665f0ae9 -QEX Fund SP; At Consensus: Invest 2018 in New York, we introduced the QEX fund in partnership with Quantum Energy Asset Management (QEAM). QEAM & R.E. Lee International Capital unveil $100 million fintech-focused hybrid fund, QEX Fund SP. Vic has over three decades of experience in banking and securities, including as the former Chief Operating Officer, Asia Pacific, for Global Transaction Services at Bank of America Merrill Lynch, and as the former Chief Risk Officer at Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing. “The combined expertise of QEAM, R.E. Lee International Capital and Pundi X provides a differentiated offering and a strong edge, amplifying the unique proposition of traditional finance and technological expertise in fintech and emerging innovative technologies such as blockchain,” said Mr. Tham. “It is rare to bring together a team that has decades of experience in fund management, securities, banking and also emerging fintech and blockchain technology all under one roof.” R.E. Lee International Capital Pte. Ltd. QEX Fund SP is targeting a USD $100 million fund size with a minimum subscription of USD $300,000 and is available to non-US accredited investors from today. For further information, please email to; [[email protected]](mailto:[email protected]) https://medium.com/pundix/pundi-x-announces-qex-fund-in-partnership-with-quantum-energy-asset-management-to-grow-the-247b473d96a5
The F(x) Coin;
The f(x) ecosystem is fully decentralized. It’s designed and built to run autonomously in perpetuity without the reliance or supervision of any individual or organization. To support this autonomous structure, f(x) Coin which is the underlying ‘currency’ within the f(x) ecosystem has to be decentralized in terms of its distribution, allocation, control, circulation and the way it’s being generated. https://i.redd.it/scikiwyj7qj21.jpg Broadly, there are four main participants in the f(x) ecosystem, as shown above:
Consumer: Users enjoy the decentralized service provided by the f(x) ecosystem.
Infrastructure Service Provider: Providing infrastructure service like the ones provided by mobile carrier, Amazon AWS but in a decentralized way.
Developer: Building DApp upon f(x) network like Uber, AirBnb, Alibaba.
Financial Service Provider: Providing liquidity of f(x) coin like NASDAQ, Morgan Stanley.
Infrastructure service provider, Developer and Financial service provider contribute the seamless operation and service shall generate the positive circulation, innovation and value flow to the f(x) ecosystem. The value flow of the Function X ecosystem;
Infrastructure service provider can offer the service, such as Blockchain, FXTP, DDocker and IPFS to earn f(x) Coin.
Developer can build applications upon f(x) OS to earn f(x) Coin and at the same time they need to pay for the infrastructure service.
Consumer enjoys the service and pays for the service in f(x) Coin.
Developer and infrastructure service provider shall earn f(x) Coin in return by providing their service and they can liquidate it through the financial service provider to earn some profit.
Together, these four participants will create a positive value flow. More service providers will enhance the quality of service and attract more consumers. More consumers will bring more value to the ecosystem by attracting more service providers,and creating f(x) Coin liquidity. Deep liquidity of f(x) Coin will attract more financial service providers to enhance the stability and quality of liquidity. This will attract more service providers to the ecosystem.
Utility of f(x) Coin;
f(x) Coin is the native ‘currency’ of the Function X blockchain and ecosystem. Services rendered in the ecosystem will be transacted with the f(x) Coin. Possible scenarios include:
For service providers: To get paid by developers, companies and consumers for providing storage nodes, DDocker and speeding up of network connections. The role of service providers will described in other sections.
For consumers: To pay service fees for using DApps, nodes, network resources, storage solutions and other services within the f(x) ecosystem.
For developers: To pay for services and resources rendered in the ecosystem such as smart contract creation, file storage (paid to IPFS service provider), code hosting (paid to DDocker service provider), advertisements (paid to other developers) and others. To get paid by the enterprises or organizations which require the developer’s service.
For enterprises or organizations: To pay for service fees, developer fees and advertisements. Services provided to consumers will be charged and denominated in f(x) Coin.
For phone and hardware manufacturers: To pay for the Function X Operating System customization. Note: we plan to only build a few thousands of the XPhone flagship handsets and leave the rest to third-party manufacturers to build more using our operating system.
For financial institutions: to receive payment for financial services rendered for the ecosystem.
Visa, MasterCard, Apple Pay, Samsung, American Express, BNB, LTC, XVG, NPXS, E2Pay.co.Id, Alipay, M-bayar, Go Pay, WeChat, Xpos Consortium, Ubivelox, XPOT and many more. Distributors; Manticora Capital, Bit Captial, Ubivelox, BlockPay and more to follow. Blockchain; NEM, UTrust, GGOX, Verime, Wanchain, Stella, Genaro Network. More to follow.
Why Pundi XPOS;
Pundi XPOS not only facilitates cryptocurrency payment or transactions but also accepts transactions through mobile wallets and traditional bank cards. Our POS solution can support retail intelligence, inventory management, order management, marketing and loyalty programs. Pundi XPOS device is an all-in-one solution for retailers. https://i.redd.it/qj6sbsfaeqi21.jpg · Accept cryptocurrency as payment · Intelligence clearing system to increase the value of the store properties · Selling and buying crypto currencies · Support BTC, ETH, NPXS, BNB, XEM, QTUM, XVG, ACT, LTC, DGD, XLM and more crypto currencies. · Support cryptocurrency payment card, such as Pundi XPASS card. · Support mobile payment apps, such as Alipay, Visa, Mastercard, ApplePay, E2Pay, Go-Pay, Pundi-Pundi, and WeChat Pay. · Support cryptocurrency wallet payment, such as Qbao, X Wallet, Nem Wallet and more. · Establish credit history and reduce financial risks · Provide a gateway for financial service providers · Support loyalty / membership management system · Support promotional and NPXS reward system · Support 3rd party delivery and logistic service providers Additional factors; - Instant Transactions - XPOS transactions happen instantly at less than 0.5 seconds. No delays. Just pay and go. - Fiat Settlement without Volatility - To avoid any volatility risk, merchants will receive their settlement in fiat money. - Work Easily With XPASS & XWallet - The XPASS card is an easy-to-use tap card for crypto beginners. Top it up with your preferred cryptocurrency and pay with ease. You can also pair your XPASS card onto the XWallet mobile app and use it with the XPOS. - Support Multiple Cryptocurrencies - The XPOS is cryptocurrency-neutral, so you can transact with your favorite coins or tokens like BTC, ETH, BNB, NPXS, etc. - Buy Cryptocurrency With Ease - In addition to making payment, customers can purchase cryptocurrency like Bitcoin from the XPOS with ease. The experience is as easy as buying a cup of coffee. - Merchants get back 0.65% of the total fee for every crypto transactions. Please see the Medium reports for more details on all developments to date: https://medium.com/@PundiXLabs XPOS Order Form; https://goo.gl/forms/yxSRHlK99h3xHF3N2 XPASS Card Order Form; https://forms.monday.com/forms/088c80c8f7e4f1ba13816312097ddcd3
The XWallet mobile app connects regular digital asset wallets with the Pundi X payment ecosystem. It allows users to easily make payments in physical stores via the XPOS & e-commerce using our "Collect" feature of the app. https://i.redd.it/j5kcce6vtqi21.jpg The XWallet can also be paired with the XPASS, making it a digital payment app that can be used anytime, anywhere. To download App for Android or ISO see below and to see a built-in guide for merchants and users guide are within the actual XWallet App or here: https://xwallet.pundix.com/
Merchants Collect Feature (e-commerce);
1. Submit an XWallet Merchant application via the app and once the application gets approved, then your “Collect” page would be marked with “Pundi X verified merchant”. 2. You can open the XWallet app, then show the QR code on “Collect” page for customers to scan and pay; 3. You can also tap “Save” on “Collect” page to download your QR code as a picture, print it out, and place it by the checkstand for customers to scan and pay. This would be a more convenient way to collect payments. 4. Collected cryptocurrency assets would go directly to the XWallet Merchant’s Virtual Card account. My actual QR code, scan to see UI on XWallet. This is a powerful tool for e-commerce's to upload their QR Code on websites payout section. Sending any supported currencies on the X Wallet is accepted by one single QR Code, such as the above.
You can easily manage your digital assets, check your current balance, or top-up in the XWallet. By default, each user will have a virtual XPASS card in the app. You can also pair your XWallet with your Pundi XPASS card to make payments directly from the app when needed. If you lose the XPASS card, you can transfer all your tokens from the XPASS card to the XWallet app or to another XPASS card. https://i.redd.it/g0fcksz3oqi21.jpg
Instant Payments Online or Offline;
Transactions via an internet-connected XWallet or XPASS can be processed immediately, while offline transactions can be made by scanning the QR code, which will later be uploaded onto the blockchain. The XWallet, in short, keeps up with your busy lifestyle. How to top up your XWallet from other wallets;
Select the ‘Card’ icon and choose the virtual card.
Select the type of currency you want to top up.
Tap on the ‘Receive’ icon and choose ‘View address’.
Copy the top-up address or scan the QR code.
On your other wallet, choose the correct type of cryptocurrency and insert the XWallet top-up address to make the transfer.
(Note: The speed of transferring tokens from other wallets to the XWallet app varies, depending on their relevant blockchain network conditions. To make instant payment transaction at any XPOS merchant, we recommend users top up their XWallet account from other wallets at least 6 hours before using the app.). XPASS Card Order; https://forms.monday.com/forms/088c80c8f7e4f1ba13816312097ddcd3
Burning of NPXS;
A quick summary of Pundi X token’s utility on each and every transaction:
A bit of it is burnt for every crypto related transaction that happens in through our XPOS.
The token is used to list other tokens in our XPOS, for example, QTUM paid us a sum of NPXS to be listed later in our XPOS, and this will include future coins that will be listed in our XPOS.
Loyalty programs are made & paid with NPXS.
Ads that run through our XPOS are also paid in NPXS.
Future products will be paid with NPXS.
Claim goods and services from merchants.
The XPOS is comprised of two parts, the consumer and merchant.
The Point of Sale device (XPOS);
For the merchants;
You get 1% extra as a fee. You can set it up from 0-3%, but we recommend 1% fee.
You can sell crypto again with that 1% fee.
You can sell the XPASS cards.
The POS can setup your inventory, loyalty programs, ads, and print smart receipts.
You can accept crypto, again the 1% fee.
You will be one of the first to change how the world uses crypto.
For the XPASS holders;
They can liquidate their crypto assets through our merchants, hassle free.
They get a special discount.
If you lose the XPASS black card, we are able to recover it (as long as you have the security card).
To better comply with ever-changing regulatory requirements, our legal team has advised the company to release the remaining unlocked tokens, starting from April 1, 2019, and to complete the program early by the end of June, 2019. Given the shortened period, we will increase the unlocked-token rate over the next three months. Please note that the total distributed amount of the tokens will remain the same as stated in the whitepaper. You need to hold your NPXS or NPXSXEM on supported exchanges or wallets such as XWallet, Binance, Imtoken or in any ERC20 wallets that you control your private key. Snapshots will be done on a daily basis and at random times for the next 3 months. The unlocked tokens are calculated on your total tokens held, which are then distributed. Program schedule below; Starts:00:00:00GMT+8onMarch1,2019 Ends:23:59:59GMT+8onMay31,2019 Unlockedtokenratepermonth:11.063% You need to hold the whole month to receive the full %. If you hold less days, you will receive less %. We recommend you to use an ERC20 wallet that you control your private key, because Binance for example uses their own system, so if they do their calculations wrong, it wont be Pundi X's fault. Supported wallets and exchanges below: Exchanges; BinanceOkcoinkrBittrex InternationalHotbit - npxsxem tokens supportedWazirXUpbit Wallets; Xwallet - npxsxem tokens supportedCoinmiEthosImtokenTrust walletEnjinEidooExodus Web Wallets; MyEtherWalletMetaMaskMistParityGeth LedgerXwallet Web - npxsxem tokens supported Hardware Wallets; Ledger Nano S Trezor
The formula to calculate the base of your NPXS/NPXSXEM monthly holdings is the same as previous months but the rate is adjusted: [(The average of the daily lowest NPXS amount of the month X 10%) + (the daily average NPXS amount of the month X 90%)] X 11.063%
This will be a new option in addition to transferring NPXS / NPXSXEM into the XWallet. The Team is working hard to enable the private wallet option before March 10, the day of this "OPTIONAL" staking process kicking off. We will do this by having holders “register” their own ERC20 or NEM wallet public address, in XWallet so that we can properly track the holdings of NPXS / NPXSXEM in those wallets to enable decentralized staking", allowing you to get the fx coins in the Xwallet, whilst getting your normal unlocks where you're getting them now. Nano S will be supported as well.
Case study of fees;
▪ 100% of Pundi X’s revenue that is generated through transactions on the XPOS will be removed permanently from our NPXS token circulation (and that's called token burn). This means that if Pundi X makes $1 of revenue from a transaction, they will take $1 worth of NPXS out of circulation permanently. NPXS tokens taken out of circulation will never be able to re-enter the circulation in any way as they will no longer exist. ▪ if the transaction is made in Pundi X tokens, we will take the tokens immediately out of the total supply. If the transaction is made in other tokens or fiat, we will use the proceeds to buyback NPXS, after which we will permanently remove the NPXS tokens from circulation and ensure they can never re-enter circulation. ▪ In case of a fiat to crypto transaction (including a payment with mastercard/visa) NPXS will be also burned. ▪ Case study 1: a user buys $1,000 worth of crypto from a merchant in a store using Pundi XPASS card. The total charge a user has to pay is $1,010; $1,000 for the crypto and $10 for the service fees. Of the $10 received, $6.50 is paid to the shop merchant for rendering this service. $3.50 is paid to Pundi X for providing XPOS (switch) and XPASS (Issuer) service.
How Regulators Nearly Killed Off Libra—and Why They Might Yet Have Second Thoughts About the Digital Currency
Facebook’s Libra project is fighting for its life after taking a mauling from regulators and politicians who, while they may like the idea of a global digital currency, don’t trust the social media company an inch to operate it. CEO Mark Zuckerberg, who’s due in Washington this week to defend his latest brainchild in front of the House Financial Services Committee, wants to build a payments infrastructure that would open the door to executing all manner of transactions on Facebook’s social networks or its messaging platforms. By doing so, he would diversify the group’s revenue away from ads, while simultaneously making the ad business more valuable by adding a new dimension to the sites that host them. But pressure from Capitol Hill and, to a lesser extent, from Frankfurt, Paris and London, have deprived him of fully one quarter of the companies who he hoped would help him build Libra. Analysts say he might yet succeed, but the chances are that the project will launch later and with less reach—if at all. The reaction from politicians has been mostly hostile: Visa, Mastercard and Stripe bowed out earlier this month after being warned off it in strikingly aggressive terms by Democratic Senators Sherrod Brown and Brian Schatz. “Facebook appears to want the benefits of engaging in financial activities without the responsibility of being regulated as a financial services company,” the senators warned. “If you take this on, you can expect a high level of scrutiny from regulators not only on Libra-related activities, but on all payment activities.” Rep. Maxine Waters has gone even further, circulating draft legislation explicitly aimed at blocking Libra, called the “Keep Big Tech out of Finance Bill.”
“A very serious blow”
It’s not just a Democrat position. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin also took responsibility for scaring them off in an interview with CNBC earlier this week. Mnuchin said he met with Libra representatives many times and had been “very clear” they would face the wrath of the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network if Libra didn’t come up to snuff on anti-money-laundering standards. “I think they realized that they’re not ready, they’re not up to par,” Mnuchin said. “And I assume some of the partners got concerned and dropped out until they meet those standards.” With PayPal, eBay and Booking.com also jumping ship, the project has lost a lot of its payments-related expertise (and, one assumes, a good deal of its lobbying power). “It’s a very serious blow,” said Lu Zurawski, head of consumer payments at Nasdaq-listed ACI Worldwide. “Payment companies with intimate experience of regulatory matters pulling out raises questions about Libra’s trajectory towards political approval. The fact that e-commerce companies are also turning their back on the project poses further problems, because of the loss of network effect.” In Europe too, Facebook’s project immediately ran into formidable problems of trust, due to its repeated controversies with the handling of its user data. In a withering attack in September, European Central Bank board member Yves Mersch’s initial criticism of Libra was that it was headed “by the very same people who had to explain themselves in front of legislators in the United States and the European Union on the threats to our democracies from their handling of personal data on their social media platform.” But Mersch also landed some telling punches as regards Libra’s shortcomings as an actual currency: it lacks a lender of last resort, and any form of deposit guarantee system. Moreover, he argued, it’s set up to dodge responsibility if it goes wrong—a familiar criticism of Big Tech’s scale-fast-fix-later business model. (Uber, no stranger to similar accusations, is one of the biggest names left in the circle of Libra backers). “Who would stand behind it in a liquidity crisis situation?” Mersch asked. “The limited liability of the Libra Association members raises serious questions about their resolve to satisfy the claims of Libra holders with their full faith and credit, as central banks do with public money.” Part of the trouble, of course, is that even without some of its partners, a currency with 2.4 billion potential users is a potential threat to the global financial system from day one. Not for nothing did Bank of England Governor Mark Carney tell the U.K. parliament this week that: “This will not be a case where something gets up and starts running and the system tries to work out after the fact how it’s regulated. It’s either going to be regulated properly, overseen properly, or it’s not going to happen.” The ferocity of the backlash has left David Marcus, hired from PayPal by Facebook to lead the Libra initiative, playing defence. “For the record, this is not tough, it’s right,” he said of Carney’s comments. “And we all agree.” Marcus insisted to Bloomberg TV on Thursday that “we are going to move forward. We are going to add more members.”
Regulators in the dark
With some of its biggest backers pulling out, new members may well want more assurances of clarity before they put money into the project. For now, FINMA, the financial regulator in Switzerland where the Libra Association has set up shop, can’t say how it intends to regulate Libra because Libra hasn’t formally asked for a specific license yet. Generally, financial firms are supervised with differing degrees of intensity according to their activities and their size. A small firm that only wanted to facilitate payments would normally be checked for anti-money-laundering procedures and the safety of client funds, but little else. But Switzerland, like most everywhere else, sets the bar higher if you want to engage in taking deposits or making loans, and a lot higher if you are so big that you would bring the financial system down with you if you crashed, like Lehman Brothers in 2008. By signalling its intention to issue tokens, Libra has made clear that it wants to be more than just a payments system, FINMA said. But it’s not clear from the information Libra has published what other activities will need to be supervised, or by whom. One thing that is clear, FINMA said, is that Libra’s global ambition will require regulators to coordinate their policies. After making no attempt to hide its ambition to shake up the global financial system, Facebook managed to rally the whole of the G7 against it by the time the countries’ finance ministers met in July. The G7’s report, published on Friday, recommended that no global stablecoin should be issued until all the relevant regulatory concerns had been addressed. (A stablecoin is a means of payment that aims to offer the benefits of speed, cost and security of digital transac-tions, while minimizing the risk of wild swings in its value by tying it to a reserve of traditional currencies.) Libra tweeted last week that it wouldn’t ever have dreamed of doing otherwise (the company that lives by “Move Fast and Break Things” is just one of 21 equal partners in the project, you understand). But given that the G7’s to-resolve list for Libra included antitrust and data privacy issues as well as those related to the financial system, the intended 2020 launch date looks as if it may be optimistic. “One of the lessons for other potential new entrants into the cryptoassets world is that it’s best to develop out of the public eye, until you are ready to deliver your project,” Dan Wolfe, managing director of Simoleon Long-Term Value, said in an email exchange. “There seems little advantage to making loud announcements long in advance of project launch.” Even since the scale of backlash became clear, says Martha Bennett, an analyst with research group Forrester, Libra’s statements have been “thin on detail” and downright unhelpful in their evasive tone. “There’s not much point in reiterating that Libra won’t pose systemic risk—if regulators and governments have concluded that it does, a more comprehensive and in-depth response is called for,” Bennett said. “If they want to continue with this, it needs a complete reset.”
The China question
And yet it’s not that the project doesn’t have friends. Even the central bankers whose own payment systems and monetary policies are threatened by it acknowledge the benefits of making payments faster, cheaper and easier. The Federal Reserve wants to launch a new system, called “FedNow”, to do just that. But its launch date is years away. The ECB’s deepest thinker, Benoit Coeure, wishes central banks’ systems worked so well that people didn’t need to resort to crypto assets. According to Carney, the U.K.’s system is too slow, too expensive and just “not good enough in this day and age.” All are haunted, to greater or lesser degrees, by the fear that squashing innovation in digital assets will one day hand control of the global financial system to China, where closer cooperation between the private and public sectors has allowed faster progress to be made. Indeed, Carney admitted to a forum hosted by the International Monetary Fund on Thursday that Libra, which is supposed to be backed 1:1 by a reserve of fiat currencies from around the world, looks more than a little like the future of the global financial system he was calling for at this year’s Fed symposium at Jackson Hole. In his speech there, Carney spelled out how the dollar’s dominance made the global economy and financial system more fragile and vulnerable to shocks. “There is an upside from (Libra) having a basket currency,” Carney said on Wednesday. “If it is adopted in that way, it would be part of rebalancing the system away from the hegemon right now, which is the U.S. dollar, to something more balanced.” Others, such as Robert Courtneidge, CEO of London law firm Moorwand, say it’s more likely that the U.S. will try to co-opt Libra into being a digital version of the dollar, aiming to defend the greenback’s primacy in world markets. At that point, Zuckerberg and Marcus could surely declare Mission Accomplished, irrespective of their stated aims of giving the world’s unbanked access to finance.
A Canadian company called Central Crypto Exchange Corp is planning to launch on February 15th, 2018 a brand-new cryptocurrency trading platform named CoinField, that’s “made in Canada”. The company will be launching with six cryptocurrencies available to Canadians; Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple, Dash, Litecoin and Bitcoin Cash. A rally in bitcoin led the cryptocurrency market higher ahead of a major technical event for the digital coin and as industry participants report an increased interest from institutional investors. Crypto Capital is slowly emerging as the central bank of the crypto industry. It facilitated banking services from one end of the industry—major crypto businesses and exchanges including Binance, Kraken and BitMEX—to the other, including the now-defunct QuadrigaCX and a number of smaller companies implicated in money-laundering schemes and fraud. The Philippines, through its central bank the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BPS), has licensed 11 more crypto exchanges in its country to bring the number of crypto stakeholders operating in the Coinfield (Central Crypto Exchange Corp) Netcoins; Netcents; Hibit Blockchain Inc. Shakepay; OKCoin; NDAX; There is still a lack of transparency in this area, at least in Canada. FINTRAC makes it possible to search for crypto exchanges by name, but many may be registered under a company name rather than via their branding.
1099-K from Coinbase, Gemini, GDAX or other Crypto Exchange? Learn what to do!
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