CryptoAM: Operation Crypto Sweep, Circle moves, and 51%.

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Happy (?) humpday people. If you cringed slightly when looking at coinmarketcap this morning, you’re not alone. Looks like we broke the 8k level mentioned yesterday. Smarter people than me would have read that sentence and pulled some crypto to fiat. The next level to watch for is a convincing break of 7.8k. If you see a 4hr candle close below that, stop putting your kids college fund in crypto and wait for 6.6k.

4 things you need to know:

One: Operation Crypto Sweep. Yesterday regulators from the U.S. and Canada announced a joint effort, “Operation Crypto Sweep”, which will attempt to identify and takedown the plethora of fraudulent ICOs that are currently scamming people out of their money.

  • “…research from ICO advisory company the Satis Group showed that a whopping 81 percent of ICOs launched since 2017 were scams. Regulatory scrutiny is heating up around the world at the same time that bitcoin and the cryptocurrency industry are gaining mainstream traction.”

  • “Since May 1, Operation Crypto Sweep has resulted in 35 enforcement actions and the opening of nearly 70 investigations or inquiries. The NASAA task force, which was formed in April 2018, also found 30,000 cryptocurrency-related domain name registrations, many of which warrant investigation.”

  • Why this is important: The crypto space needs the scams and frauds to go away before it can expect large institutional investors to enter the space. Whereas Bitcoin was once mainly seen as a currency used by criminals to buy drugs, cryptocurrencies will be synonymous with scams if actions are not taken to curb the number of malicious actors.

  • Read more…

Two: Circle Invest now has “Buy the Market” feature. Circle has added a button that allows you to buy an index of all the offered crypto assets on Circle Invest. The positions are weighted according to the market cap of each coin.

  • “Circle Invest will mark assets up by 1 percent when users buy or sell a particular cryptocurrency, but will not charge any fixed fees on top. This differs from existing trading platforms, which she said charge both a markup and trading fees”

  • My take: Circle Invest has again shown that they are committed to bringing safe, simple, and cheap crypto investment to the masses. Allowing new users to buy an index of the market is a great way to expose people to crypto without allowing them to get enticed into going all in on one coin.

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Three: Verge ($XVG) gets hit with another 51% attack. For the uninitiated, a 51% attack is when someone controls 51% of the power to verify transactions on the blockchain. Simplified, this just means they are able to mint free money, leading to a break of trust in the system.

  • This is not the first time that Verge has been hit with this type of attack, which stems from a programing bug in their blockchain. For some unknown reason, the devs have not fully addressed the issue since the first attack.

  • The hackers “stole” about $1.7 million in verge. What really happened is that a set amount of Verge is supposed to be released to miners every time a block is mined, and the hackers managed to speed up the process of block mining and capture all the Verge that was created due to the exploit.

  • Be smart: Many blockchains out there are insecure. Truly, there are not many battle tested blockchains. Verge at one point had a $2B valuation, even though this bug existed in the code. Be skeptical of projects that are young, as it takes time to uncover security flaws.

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Four: Thirty (!!) percent of South Koreans in the workforce have invested in cryptocurrency. Korea has always had a reputation for being a tech focused country, but 30% of the population investing in crypto is abnormally large. According to a report done by Saramin, the average crypto investor in Korea has $5,260 invested.

  • Other highlights: About 80% of investors have made money from cryptocurrency, with an average return of 425%.

  • If you didn’t know, South Korea is the world’s third-largest market in bitcoin trading after Japan and the US

  • Comparatively, about 14% of Americans have invested in Bitcoin according to a study by LendEDU.

  • My take: Cryptocurrency is a worldwide phenomenon, and if you’re based in western country it’s easy to forget this. The largest trading volume for Bitcoin comes out of Japan. When you look at the markets from that perspective, a $400B valuation starts to seem awfully small.

  • Read more…

What I’m Reading Today

IOTA - 100 Billion Reasons Why

If you want to be blown away, watch this video. Terry Shane, founder of the bIOTAsphere, explains how DLT can revolutionize the world we live in. No, seriously, I’m not trying to build excessive hype. Blockchain, DLT, Internet of things, machine-to-machine economies, this video has it all.

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