Largest South Korean Exchange Launches Crypto Market Indices

Largest South Korean Exchange Launches Crypto Market Indices

The largest crypto exchange in South Korea by trading volume, Bithumb, has launched two cryptocurrency market indices. One tracks all coins listed on the exchange while the other tracks only altcoins. Meanwhile, Upbit, the country’s largest crypto exchange by the number of coins listed, has two similar indices and sub-indices divided into three broad categories.

Also read: Yahoo! Japan Confirms Entrance Into the Crypto Space

Bithumb Launches Crypto Indices

Largest South Korean Exchange Launches Crypto Market IndicesBithumb announced Wednesday the launch of Bithumb Crypto Index (BTCI) which comprises two separate indices.

The exchange detailed:

BTCI has been developed in consideration of market representation and liquidity to provide investors with a single indicator that can show the trends of the cryptocurrency market. It consists of Bithumb Market Index (BTMI)…and Bithumb Altcoin Market Index (BTAI).

BTMI is calculated based on all cryptocurrencies listed on Bithumb while BTAI only takes into account “all non-bitcoin cryptocurrencies” listed on the exchange. The former aims to provide “an overall view of the price changes in the cryptocurrency market” while the latter “a view of the price changes in the cryptocurrency market excluding bitcoin.” Bithumb began calculating BTCI on July 1. The index is calculated real-time and updated every 10 seconds.

Largest South Korean Exchange Launches Crypto Market Indices

At the time of this writing, Bithumb is South Korea’s largest crypto exchange by trading volume, according to Coinmarketcap. With 53 cryptocurrencies listed for trading against the Korean won, the exchange has a 24-hour trading volume of $726,488,270.

Upbit’s Crypto Indices

The country’s largest crypto exchange by the number of coins listed, the Kakao-backed Upbit, also has a crypto index called Upbit Cryptocurrency Index (UBCI). Launched in May, the index consists of two main indices: Upbit Market Index (UBMI) and Upbit Altcoin Index (UBAI). However, there are also over 20 sub-indices grouped into three broad categories: market, theme, and strategy.

Largest South Korean Exchange Launches Crypto Market Indices“The index is designed to help investors grasp the movements of the cryptocurrency market at a quick glance,” Business Korea detailed at the time and quoted Lee Seok-woo, the president of Dunamu Inc. which operates Upbit, commenting:

The UBCI will become a standard in observing the whole cryptocurrency market…We will improve it in terms of technology and management to make it a representative index not only in the Korean market but in the global market.

Largest South Korean Exchange Launches Crypto Market Indices

At the time of this writing, Upbit has a 24-hour trading volume of $292,249,180, making it the second-largest crypto exchange in Korea by trading volume, according to Coinmarketcap. The exchange currently has 166 coins listed and supports 276 markets.

What do you think of Korean exchanges’ crypto indices? Let us know in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Bithumb, and Upbit.


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Japan Gov’t Outraged by $60m Crypto Hack of Zaif, Regrets Lack of Suspension

Earlier this month, major Japanese crypto exchange Zaif was hacked, losing $60 million worth of crypto in user funds. The Financial Services Agency (FSA), the main financial watchdog of Japan, has stated that it regrets allowing Zaif to continue its operation after the exchange was given two warnings to drastically improve its system. “It is

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Major Korean Crypto Exchange Upbit Opens in Singapore Next Month

Major South Korean Crypto Exchange Upbit Opens in Singapore Next Month

Major South Korean cryptocurrency exchange Upbit will reportedly begin operations in Singapore next month. The new exchange will offer Singapore dollar trading as well as crypto-to-crypto pairs in three markets offered by Bittrex, Upbit’s US-based partner.

Also read: 160 Crypto Exchanges Seek to Enter Japanese Market, Regulator Reveals

Upbit Expands to Singapore

Major South Korean Crypto Exchange Upbit Opens in Singapore Next MonthDunamu Inc., the operator of the Kakao-backed exchange Upbit, said on Wednesday that it is launching a cryptocurrency exchange in Singapore next month, Yonhap reported.

Major South Korean Crypto Exchange Upbit Opens in Singapore Next MonthUpbit is currently South Korea’s second largest crypto exchange. At the time of writing, its 24-hour trading volume is approximately $229 million, second only to Bithumb which has a 24-hour trading volume of $392 million. At present, Upbit has 271 cryptocurrencies listed.

Dunamu established a Singaporean branch office in February and has been preparing for an exchange launch ever since, the news outlet conveyed. Kim Kook-hyun, head of Upbit’s Singaporean branch, was quoted saying:

As Singapore has proactively supported blockchain technology, our advancement into the nation will help us secure many chances to lead a variety of relevant projects and to have global competitiveness.

Major South Korean Crypto Exchange Upbit Opens in Singapore Next MonthWithout revealing the exact launch date, the company confirmed that it will be in “early October.”

Singapore was picked as the firm’s first overseas expansion because of “the city-state’s strong support for blockchain and related technologies,” the Investor stated, adding that the firm plans to expand to more countries in the future.

At the Upbit Developer Conference held on Jeju Island, Dunamu CEO Lee Sir-goo confirmed that Upbit will not be issuing its own cryptocurrency. Referring to the exchange’s expansion to Singapore, he told reporters:

We don’t want to lose out on the opportunities now…If we wait until the Korean crypto exchange environment improves, we could lag behind our global competitors.

Plans for Upbit Singapore

The new exchange will be headed by Alex Kim who previously served as the head of Kakao Indonesia, the Investor described, elaborating:

The Upbit Singapore [exchange] will be serviced in English and offer Singapore dollar trading. It will also support crypto-to-crypto pairs, including Upbit’s US partner Bittrex’s bitcoin, ethereum and tether markets.

Major South Korean Crypto Exchange Upbit Opens in Singapore Next MonthLee detailed, “In the future we would like to add other fiat currencies and expand to other countries in Southeast Asia,” emphasizing that Upbit will continue to strengthen its partnership with Bittrex as it expands globally.

For the launch promotion, trading fees in the Singapore dollar market will be waived for one month for “users who complete their subscription and self-certification,” the publication noted.

Recently, several companies have expanded to Singapore. Line, the Japanese subsidiary of Korean internet giant Naver, has launched a crypto exchange called Bitbox in Singapore. In addition, Binance is beta testing a fiat exchange in the country, CEO Changpeng Zhao revealed last week.

What do you think of Upbit expanding to Singapore? Let us know in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock and Upbit.


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Singapore’s Crypto Market Blooms as Korea’s Largest Exchange Moves In

Dunamu, the parent company of South Korea’s largest crypto exchange Upbit, has officially announced the launch of Upbit Singapore, which will be fully operational by October. Upbit Singapore CEO Alex Kim explained in an official statement that local users in Singapore will be able to trade all of the cryptocurrencies integrated by partner exchange Bittrex

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Bithumb and Coinone Terminating Fiat Withdrawals for Unverified Crypto Traders

Bithumb and Coinone Terminating Fiat Withdrawals for Unverified Crypto Traders

Two major South Korean cryptocurrency exchanges have announced that they will no longer allow unverified users to make withdrawals in Korean won. Starting next month, users of Bithumb and Coinone must have verified real-name accounts in order to deposit and withdraw the fiat currency.

Also read: 160 Crypto Exchanges Seek to Enter Japanese Market, Regulator Reveals

Bithumb Goes All Real-Name

Bithumb and Coinone Terminating Fiat Withdrawals for Unverified Crypto TradersBithumb, the largest crypto exchange by trading volume in South Korea, announced on Friday, Sept. 14, that it will terminate fiat withdrawal service for all users without verified real-name accounts.

The service will end on Oct. 1 for corporate members and on Oct. 15 for individual members. Bithumb says the move is to comply with the government’s anti-money laundering policy.

However, the exchange clarified that this announcement only affects fiat withdrawals, emphasizing:

Cryptocurrency transactions and withdrawals can be used normally.

Bithumb and Coinone Terminating Fiat Withdrawals for Unverified Crypto TradersThe South Korean government introduced the real-name system for crypto exchanges at the end of January. Members of an exchange using this system can convert their accounts to real-name ones at the bank that provides the conversion service to the exchange.

So far, banks have only been offering this service to the country’s top four exchanges – Bithumb, Upbit, Coinone, and Korbit. Nonghyup Bank provides this service to Bithumb and Coinone.

Despite efforts by the government, banks, and exchanges, local media recently reported that only about 40-50 percent of accounts at the four exchanges have been converted to date. News.Bitcoin.com reported last week that banks have been pressuring crypto exchanges to take measures to ensure conversion in order to reduce the risk of money laundering.

Coinone Makes Similar Move

Bithumb and Coinone Terminating Fiat Withdrawals for Unverified Crypto TradersSouth Korea’s third-largest crypto exchange, Coinone, also made a similar announcement on Friday.

The exchange explained that “Nonghyup Bank requested Coinone to limit the withdrawal of Korean currency” for members who have not verified their accounts by a certain date “pursuant to the Act on Reporting and Utilization of Specific Financial Transaction Information.” Coinone elaborated that effective Oct. 15:

In order to comply with the government policy related to virtual currency transactions, we will limit the withdrawal of persons who have not completed the real name verification.

Bithumb and Coinone Terminating Fiat Withdrawals for Unverified Crypto TradersAfter Oct. 15, users who do not have real-name accounts will be “unable to deposit and withdraw in Korean currency,” Coinone wrote. The exchange is asking users to make withdrawals before that date if they do not plan to convert to real-name accounts by then.

“When you authenticate real-name verified accounts, you can deposit and withdraw in Korean currency,” Coinone described. Like Bithumb, the exchange reiterated that the notice does not affect crypto trading, deposits, or withdrawals. Both exchanges have also confirmed that corporations, minors, and foreigners are not eligible for real-name conversion.

At the time of this writing, Upbit and Korbit, which do not use Nonghyup Bank, have not announced that they will stop providing Korean won withdrawal service to unverified users.

What do you think of Bithumb and Coinone disallowing fiat withdrawals for users without real-name accounts? Let us know in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Bithumb, and Coinone.


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Coinbase, BitGo Reaffirm Plans to Focus on Serving Institutions in Crypto

Two US-based crypto behemoths, Coinbase and BitGo, will continue to facilitate growing demand for Bitcoin from institutional investors by operating as trusted custodians. Earlier this week, BitGo was approved by South Dakota regulators to create and operate a crypto custody solution, while Coinbase established a new office in New York exclusively to handle institutional demand

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Bittrex to Launch Crypto Exchange in Malta Next Month

Bittrex to Launch Crypto Exchange in Malta Next Month

US-based cryptocurrency exchange Bittrex is reportedly launching a crypto exchange in Malta at the beginning of next month. Bittrex says the new platform will allow them to list coins “a lot faster.” It will operate within the regulatory framework established by the European Union and the Maltese government.

Also read: 160 Crypto Exchanges Seek to Enter Japanese Market, Regulator Reveals

Bittrex Eyes Malta Launch in October

Bittrex to Launch Crypto Exchange in Malta Next MonthBittrex has confirmed that “it will open a branch in Malta on Oct. 1, as part of its global expansion plans,” the Investor reported on Friday, September 14. Bittrex’s co-founder and CEO, Bill Shihara, said at the Upbit Developer Conference on the South Korean Jeju Island:

We are now planning to launch Bittrex Malta…This will allow us to list tokens a lot faster.

Bittrex to Launch Crypto Exchange in Malta Next Month
Bill Shihara at the Upbit Developer Conference 2018.

The conference is organized by Dunamu Inc., the operator of one of South Korea’s largest crypto exchanges, the Kakao-backed Upbit. Bittrex has a partnership agreement with Upbit that “allows the two exchanges to share the same order book and coin listings, among others,” the news outlet conveyed.

Shihara explained that “the coin listing process will be much easier and faster in Malta,” the publication noted, adding that the exchange “will also not charge fees for listing.”

Bittrex to Launch Crypto Exchange in Malta Next MonthBittrex has already established a subsidiary in Malta as well as an affiliated company, Bittrex International, to manage all of its overseas operations.

Citing that “Bittrex Malta is designed to operate within the regulatory framework established by the European Union and Maltese government,” the exchange wrote:

Every digital asset listed on Bittrex Malta will be available for our international network of partner exchanges to launch (consistent with their local laws).

Bittrex’s Overseas Expansion

The CEO explained that “Working with the government in the US to stay compliant is hard. So it would be very difficult for us to open offices around the world in different countries,” elaborating:

We actually like this partnership model… If we can find great partners like Dunamu, then they can handle a lot of work with local regulations and banks. All we need to do is just help them make their exchanges better.

Bittrex to Launch Crypto Exchange in Malta Next MonthThe news outlet noted that Shihara expressed “great satisfaction with the tie-up,” adding that “he seeks to renew the partnership every year, without plans to open a separate Bittrex branch in Korea.”

Bittrex started offering US dollar trading in May but currently has no plans to add other fiat currencies, the publication described. “But we do plan to continue listing more digital currencies that trade against the US dollar.” According to Coinmarketcap, Bittrex now lists 287 coins while Upbit has 273 coins listed.

What do you think of Bittrex opening an exchange in Malta? Let us know in the comments section below.


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Major Korean Insurer to Offer Crypto Exchanges Insurance for Hacking Damages

Major Korean Insurer to Offer Crypto Exchanges Insurance for Hacking Damages

A major South Korean insurance company reportedly will start offering cryptocurrency exchanges insurance aimed at compensating for damages caused by hacking, according to local media. Currently, few crypto exchanges in the country are insured and hacking damages are not covered.

Also read: 160 Crypto Exchanges Seek to Enter Japanese Market, Regulator Reveals

Introducing Hacking Insurance

A major South Korean insurance company, Hanwha Insurance, is reportedly introducing a new type of cyber insurance product this month aimed at providing compensation for hacking damages of domestic crypto exchanges, local media reported this week.

The Asia Times described:

Cyber insurance, which [crypto] exchanges have joined in the past, is a compensation for the leakage of personal information, but the new product also compensates for the damage caused by hacking.

Major Korean Insurer to Offer Crypto Exchanges Insurance for Hacking Damages Hanwha Insurance was quoted revealing that they “plan to start negotiations with individual exchanges for insurance from next month.” However, the company added that “even if the exchange wants to join, it will require much coordination, as the insurance and reinsurance companies need to meet in order to get insurance.”

The publication noted, “exchanges may be reluctant to take out insurance if sufficient compensation is not provided or the premium is too high.”

Rising Demand for Hacking Insurance

Major Korean Insurer to Offer Crypto Exchanges Insurance for Hacking DamagesThe demand for insurance coverage for hacking damages has been growing in South Korea since the hack of Bithumb and Coinrail in June.

While Bithumb already has two insurance policies, one with Hyundai Marine & Fire Insurance Co. and the other with Heungkuk Fire & Marine Insurance Co., CBC News noted that they do not cover hacking damages, adding:

Bithumb has two cyber comprehensive insurance policies [covering] violation of information maintenance, data loss and theft, cyber threats, and compensation for investor personal information leakage.

Few Exchanges Are Currently Insured

In June, Business Korea reported that the Korean Blockchain Association was in talks with Hyundai Marine & Fire Insurance Co. and Hanwha General Insurance Co. over how to provide insurance coverage for crypto exchanges of any size. The publication detailed:

The association has been continuously holding negotiations with insurers from April on behalf of its member exchanges. This is because insurance companies are reluctant to accept cryptocurrency exchanges as their policyholders due to their credibility and security issues.

The association has 23 members that are crypto exchanges, including the country’s largest four. Upbit, Bithumb, Coinone, and Korbit already have insurance but the coverage amounts are low. According to the news outlet, Bithumb is insured up to 6 billion won (~$5.3 million), Upbit up to 5 billion won (~$4.5 million), and the other two exchanges up to 3 billion won (~$2.7 million) each.

What do you think of insurance companies offering coverage for hacking damages? Let us know in the comments section below.


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Binance, Okex, Huobi and Upbit Among Investors in New Stablecoin, Terra

Binance, Okex, Huobi and Upbit Among Investors in New Stablecoin, Terra

Yet another stablecoin is joining the arguably already crowded ecosystem. Terra, as the new fiat-pegged crypto is called, counts four of the biggest cryptocurrency exchanges in the world among its investors, including Binance, Okex, Huobi and Upbit.

Also Read: Morgan Creek Launches Digital Asset Index Fund for Institutional Investors

Terra Firma

Binance, Okex, Huobi and Upbit Among Investors in New Stablecoin, TerraTerra has announced today it raised an initial $32 million in its seed funding round which included Binance Labs, Okex, Huobi Capital, and Dunamu & Partners (the investment firm of Upbit operator). Other than exchanges, Polychain Capital, FBG Capital, Hashed, 1kx, Kenetic Capital, Arrington XRP Capital and Translink Capital also took part in the seed round. The capital is meant for creating a stablecoin that can be used as a payment solution.

Fears about the dependability of Tether (USDT) have led to а torrent of new stablecoins recently, such as the Stronghold USD and Stasis EUR, and more are on the way. Terra is trying to carve a space for itself by focusing on ecommerce integration. Its co-founder, Daniel Shin, is the founder and Chairman of TMON, an ecommerce platform from South Korea. And fifteen companies, with a total of $25 billion in annual transaction volume and 40 million customers (including Woowa Brothers, Qoo10, Carousell, Pomelo, and TIKI), have joined the Terra Alliance. The stablecoin is said to be backed by Luna, an asset that derives its value from transaction fees collected on the network. “Much like the moon stabilizes the earth’s rotation, Luna is Terra’s eternal guardian of stability.”

Is There a Need for Another Stablecoin?

Binance, Okex, Huobi and Upbit Among Investors in New Stablecoin, Terra“From experience, I know that faster, more secure transactions at a fraction of today’s fees could be a game-changer for many ecommerce platforms. We are excited to be working with great partners and look forward to beta-testing Terra’s payment system in Q4 of this year,” said Shin. “However, our vision goes beyond positioning Terra as a trusted and secure medium of exchange for ecommerce. The potential application of Terra is immense, and we foresee it being used for all types and forms of financial products like loans and insurance.”

“While we see many stablecoins coming out, Terra’s journey is especially meaningful as they are designing one of the few price-stable protocols with existing, working, and strong go-to-market strategy and usage. We are constantly impressed by the founders’ leadership and earnest commitment to the business, and excited to support the team,” commented Ella Zhang, Head of Binance Labs.

Is there a place in the market for so many new stablecoins? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.


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Korea’s 2nd-Biggest Crypto Exchange Resumes User Registrations as Market Improves

Bithumb, South Korea’s second-biggest crypto exchange by daily trading volume behind UPbit, will officially resume registrations for new investors as early as this week. NH Bank, one of the largest financial institutions in the country, is set to sign an agreement with Bithumb on August 30 to provide virtual bank accounts to Bithumb users, which … Continued

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Bitcoin Price Climbs to $7,100 as Crypto Market Hits $232 Billion, EOS Surges 15%

Over the past 24 hours, Bitcoin has rebounded from $7,000 to $7,100, remaining on top of a key resistance level which traders were concerned about. Despite the relatively strong performance of Bitcoin, tokens understandably have not performed well against both Bitcoin and US dollar on August 29, considering the massive gains they recorded earlier this … Continued

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Researchers Find Discrepancies With Top Exchange Volumes

Researchers Find Discrepancies With Top Exchange Volumes

This month the Blockchain Transparency Institute (BTI) published a research report that claims quite a few of the top cryptocurrency exchanges are overstating their trade volumes or participating in wash trades. BTI explains that out of 130 of the top cryptocurrency trading platforms researched, the organization estimates that every 24-hours over $6B worth of digital asset trade volumes are faked.

Also Read: Lloyd’s of London Insures Cryptocurrency Custody Service Kingdom Trust

Suspect Exchanges Ratio Ranged Wildly

Every single day billions of dollars worth of cryptocurrencies are swapped, and today there’s been about $12.9B traded over the last 24-hours. Over the past year or more many exchanges have been scrutinized for false reporting and various data sites have been called into question for over-exaggerated trade volumes. For example, this past March Sylvain Ribes has published a study that revealed some interesting information about trade volumes stemming from exchanges like Okex and Huobi. This month the Blockchain Transparency Institute (BTI) published its research that explains 70 percent of the top 100 exchanges listed on data sites like Coinmarketcap are reporting phony volumes.

Researchers Find Discrepancies With Top Exchange Volumes
List of the top twenty exchanges from BTI’s research.

The methodology in the study used the trading platform’s order book liquidity and the exchange’s unique daily visitor counts. The research was conducted using web traffic data websites like Google Analytics and Similarweb. The BTI researchers detail that the study also used Sylvain Ribes’ slippage paper which BTI says gave them a more accurate analysis of exchange volumes.

“The accurate exchanges outside of the big money exchanges typically have a volume/user to unique visitor ratio of around between 2% and 5% (3.5% average). The suspect exchanges ratio ranged wildly from 10% up to over 655,000%.

For example, Lbank and ZB exchanges which both claim to be in the top 10 of all exchanges, are also claiming to have volume/unique visitor numbers over $214,000 and $74,000 per day, respectively. This is outlandish considering known high liquid markets Bitfinex, Binance, and Coinbase fall between $5,000 and $8,500 per visitor per day.       

Three Times the Stated Volumes

BTI also says there are discrepancies with the exchanges Okex and Huobi as well as the trading platform Bibox. The study details that Binance commands the largest unique visitor per day count, and the top trading platform in the USA is Coinbase. As far as South Korea, the BTI researchers state Bithumb outpaces Upbit’s volumes. However, Upbit disputes this statistic and has contacted the BTI team. The researchers detail they will look into Upbit’s mobile app user count and are willing to work with any exchanges who provide verifiable data. In the end, the study concludes that roughly $6B stemming from 130 exchanges reporting trade volumes are likely phony.  

Researchers Find Discrepancies With Top Exchange Volumes
CMC volumes August 28, 2018 (left adjusted) – (right reported)

“Tallying up the volume numbers of the top 130 exchanges, it is estimated that over $6 billion dollars in daily trade volume is being faked with over 67% of daily volume being wash traded,” details BTI.

Over 70% of the CMC top 100 is likely engaging in wash trading by at least 3x their stated volume.

Phony trade volumes are nothing new to the cryptocurrency industry as there have been accusations since the first exchanges opened. Back in 2013 and 2014, there were many studies and editorials concerning exchanges reporting false numbers. This past July Crypto Exchange Ranks published a report that accuses the site Coinmarketcap (CMC) of incentivizing fake volumes. CMC had made some adjustments to the portal this year which make for a different display of exchange rankings.     

What do you think about BTI’s study concerning discrepancies with exchange activity? Let us know what you think in the comment section below.


Images via Shutterstock, Pixabay, CMC, and the BTI report.


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3 Months Since Korea’s Biggest Cryptocurrency Exchange Raid, What Happened?

It has been three months since UPbit, South Korea’s biggest crypto exchange, was raided by local authorities. Yet, the government has not released a public statement on the investigation. Did the Investigation Find Nothing? Earlier this year, UPbit was raided by local financial authorities under the suspicion of manipulating and inflating its balance sheet. The

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Korean Government: 11 out of 21 Crypto Exchanges Complete Security Measures

Korean Government: 11 out of 21 Crypto Exchanges Complete Security Measures

The South Korean government has announced the outcome of its inspection of 21 cryptocurrency exchanges. While a number of exchanges have completed implementing both short-term and wallet management measures, many security vulnerabilities remain at most exchanges.

Also read: Yahoo! Japan Confirms Entrance Into the Crypto Space

21 Exchanges Inspected

Korean Government: 11 out of 21 Crypto Exchanges Complete Security MeasuresSouth Korea’s government has announced the result of its mid-term review of 21 cryptocurrency exchanges. The inspection was conducted in June and July by the Korea Internet and Security Agency (KISA) and the Korean Ministry of Science and Technology.

KISA security experts visited each exchange to check on the 85 items identified during its previous crypto exchange inspection, conducted between January and March. They focused on 17 items which needed immediate implementation; six were short-term measures and 11 concerned crypto wallet management.

Korean Government: 11 out of 21 Crypto Exchanges Complete Security Measures“Intermediate checks were carried out in such a way as to confirm whether improvements had been made, focusing on the 17 security items recommended for quick action,” the government explained. These items include dedicated security and management staff, a password management system, crypto deposit and withdrawal controls, and a system to monitor wallets for abnormalities.

The agencies revealed that 11 out of 21 exchanges have completed the short-term measures. In addition, eight of them have also improved their wallet management systems. The eight are Upbit, Bithumb, Korbit, Coinnest, Coinlink, Coinone, Coinplug, and Huobi Korea, local media detailed. The government reiterated:

In the management of virtual currency wallets, most of the vulnerabilities in the business have not yet been improved.

Furthermore, twelve companies have been found to have insufficient security procedures to prevent data leakage and loss of funds from their cold wallets. Ten companies have inadequate systems to monitor hot wallets for suspicious activities. In addition, at least ten businesses lack wallet backup and recovery measures.

Further Inspections Planned

The final check on the implementation of recommended measures will be carried out next month, the agencies noted, adding that any new crypto exchanges will also be inspected.

Korean Government: 11 out of 21 Crypto Exchanges Complete Security Measures“Because of the weak security of virtual currency exchanges, we should be careful in investing,” Kim Jong-sam, a spokesperson for the Ministry of Information and Communication, commented. “We will continue to check virtual currency exchanges to improve security.”

Referencing the hack of Coinrail and Bithumb in June, KISA described that “the leakage of virtual currency due to the hacking of recent dealers has directly led to the damage of users,” adding that after checking 85 security items, “there are many dealers with low security.”

Emphasizing that they have been asking crypto exchanges to “improve security levels by completing the recommendations for improvement,” the agencies revealed:

We plan to support the improvement of the security level of the dealers through continuous inspection of the dealers.

What do you think of the Korean government’s review? Let us know in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock and Kisa.


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Korea’s Biggest Crypto Exchange UPbit Comes Out Clean in Audit after Raid

UPbit, currently the biggest crypto exchange in South Korea, came out clean in an audit report which proved the exchange had 100 percent of the amount its balance sheet demonstrated. Police Raid in May On May 11, as CCN reported, UPbit was raided by local authorities under the suspicion of balance sheet manipulation and inflated … Continued

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South Korea Plans to End Major Tax Benefits for Bitcoin Exchanges

South Korea Plans to End Major Tax Benefits for Bitcoin Exchanges

The South Korean government has announced a new set of tax law amendments. Under this proposal, bitcoin exchanges will no longer be eligible for income and corporate tax deductions currently enjoyed by small and medium-sized businesses. The regulators have also been considering imposing capital gains tax on the sale of cryptocurrencies.

Also read: Yahoo! Japan Confirms Entrance Into the Crypto Space

Stripping Away Tax Benefits

The South Korean government has announced its proposed Revised Tax Law 2018. In the official statement published Monday, the government wrote, “from next year, virtual currency handling businesses will be excluded from the industries eligible for the tax reduction for SMEs [small and medium-sized enterprises].”

South Korea Plans to End Major Tax Benefits for Bitcoin Exchanges
The South Korean government announcing 2018 tax amendments.

News1 explained that crypto exchanges “have been considered as venture companies or small and medium-sized businesses for tax purposes until now,” allowing them to benefit from considerable income tax deduction. Citing other favorable tax treatments such as depreciation of assets acquired during the first four years, the publication elaborated:

Under the current tax exemption rules, income tax and corporation tax are reduced by 50% to 100% for five years for business startups, SMEs and venture companies.

Crypto Exchanges to Pay Higher Taxes

South Korea Plans to End Major Tax Benefits for Bitcoin ExchangesAccording to the news outlet, the government has decided to exclude crypto exchanges from the list of entities eligible for SME tax deduction “because the cryptocurrency trading business lacks the effect of creating added value.” The revised tax law will be submitted to the National Assembly and, if passed, will go into effect next year.

Crypto exchanges are currently liable to pay corporation tax of up to 22%, Seoul Finance described, adding that “considering that virtual currency exchanges earned huge amounts of money in the last year and earlier this year, it is estimated that the amount of exemption would be considerably large.” The publication conveyed that under the current setup:

Bitsum exchange, which is estimated to have net profit of over 250 billion won [~US$223 million] last year, should pay 54.4 billion won [~$48.6 million] in corporate tax but it is expected to save 27.2 billion won [~$24.3 million] since it receives 50% reduction.

However, “taxation on the sale of cryptocurrency was not included in the amendment bill…based on the judgment that more research is needed,” the publication emphasized. “The government has been considering imposing capital gains tax virtual currency trading profits since early this year, but no specific taxation bill has come out.”

What do you think of the Korean government proposing to take away tax benefits for crypto exchanges? Let us know in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock and the Korean government.


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Binance Will Face Tough Competition in South Korea in New Market Expansion

Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, is planning an expansion into South Korea, the third biggest cryptocurrency market behind Japan and the US. South Korea’s Unique Market Structure In South Korea, two major digital asset trading platforms have had dominance over the crypto exchange market for several years. UPbit, an exchange created and developed by

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Most Complex dApp on Ethereum Already Has Millions of Dollars at Stake

Augur, which its co-founder Joey Krug previously described as the most complex decentralized application (dApp) on the Ethereum blockchain, has surpassed a million dollars at stake and demonstrated a rapid growth rate over the past few weeks. Future of Decentralized Betting In essence, Augur is a decentralized betting platform that exists on the Ethereum network.

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