January 29

“A draft of India’s national strategy on blockchain and distributed ledger technology suggests a central bank digital currency (CBDC), the digital Indian rupee, and a national blockchain.

As an alternative to Public Blockchains that operate with native cryptocurrency, like Ethereum, it is strongly recommended that Government of India along with RBI come out with a Central Bank Digital INR (CBDR) administered over a Public Permissioned Blockchain that processes transactions through a Turing Complete Virtual Machine allowing decentralized applications to run on its platform.

Additionally, the company recommended adopting a “light touch regulatory approach” at the initial stages of the blockchain industry’s development in India.”

“The DMCC, backed by the government of Dubai, has announced plans to replicate Switzerland’s Crypto Valley in a tax-free zone in the UAE.

Announced at Davos last week, the DMCC, a state-backed entity, has teamed up with the Switzerland-based CV VC to build out a sector in the UAE devoted to pushing blockchain and cryptocurrency innovation.

Dubai’s Crypto Valley will feature several co-working facilities, education and mentorship for those seeking careers in the blockchain space, and incubation services for crypto-based businesses.”

“Singapore’s Payment Services Act 2019 (PSA) brings so-called Digital Payment Token (DPT) services – effectively covering all crypto businesses and exchanges based in Singapore – under current anti-money laundering (AML) and counterterrorist-financing (CTF) rules.

As such, crypto businesses in Singapore are required to first register and then apply for a license to operate in the jurisdiction, similar to the Fifth European Anti-Money Laundering Directive (AMLD5) which went into effect Jan. 10.

They [MAS] have gone a bit further than FATF in terms of some criteria, but at the same time some of the other aspects of it are probably not as far as FATF has intended.”

“The Ethereum Foundation awarded a $650,000 grant to Nimbus for continuing its work on light Ethereum 2.0 clients. The project’s goal is to allow smartphones and embedded devices to run smart contract-capable nodes.

These funds will be used to get Nimbus into a production-ready state, as the next milestones will involve the testing and eventual release of a client supporting Ethereum’s beacon chain.

Devices that will be able to support Ethereum nodes also include the Raspberry Pi, point of sale units and other embedded devices.”

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“The patent outlines a ledger-based payments system that could make it easier for individual users, businesses and governments to track and trace transactions made using a cryptocurrency.

Dubbed the “self-aware token,” it is designed to record all transaction data when not being used on a payments platform. When the token rejoins the platform ecosystem at a later stage, it automatically uploads data from any “off-line transactions.”

For IBM, the ability to determine the provenance of a token can help “bolster trust and viability” within a new token-based economy. Businesses can confirm tokens have not been used for any criminal activities, and administrators or regulators can build profiles on parties to enforce relevant laws and regulations.

“Finland-based LocalBitcoins has reportedly suspended user accounts without warning, with some users being unable to withdraw their Bitcoin.

Customers residing or otherwise located in the following countries are required to have an enhanced due diligence process. 

As LocalBitcoins continued to tighten its AML policies in 2019, its global Bitcoin trading volumes have been gradually dropping to touch a multi-year low in early 2020. Bitcoin trading volumes on LocalBitcoins dropped more than 50% since September 2019 by early January 2020.”

“Mining pool Bitcoin.com will not now support the controversial bitcoin cash development fund proposal without broader agreement from the community.

Bitcoin.com will not risk a chain split or a change to the underlying economics.”

“Today, Representative Counsel issued a letter to the Honorable Bill Blair, Canadian Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, requesting an update on whether the RCMP will conduct an exhumation and post­mortem autopsy on the alleged body of Gerald Cotten prior to Spring 2020.”

“On the one hand you have these oracle networks starting to take on a life of their own and starting to become a sustainable resource for the larger crypto ecosystem; you’re seeing use cases other than DeFi—gaming and insurance—start to move towards production. And you’re seeing some of the enterprise architectures that we’ve come up with start to also, slowly, move towards production.

The number of data networks enabling smart contracts to access data on BTC, ETH, LINK, BAT and many more, is growing rapidly. There are now almost 30, and Chainlink plans to publish the full list very soon. 

A data rich environment of inputs, that people can easily use, is now becoming available.”