Transaction Exposure – Local Collectors Post Wed, 22 Jun 2022 02:23:19 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Transaction Exposure – Local Collectors Post 32 32 Banking scams are wreaking havoc in Singapore and Malaysia, why? Wed, 22 Jun 2022 00:20:56 +0000

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For businesses and consumers banking in the Singapore and Malaysian markets, it is quite difficult to miss the upsurge in financial scams over the past two years. The increase in financial data breaches has been very noticeable across the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region since 2020, when pandemic-caused stay-at-home orders saw a wide range of cybercriminals and fraudsters emerge from the carpentry and conducting phishing scams, malware and ransomware attacks to name a few.

New data from Check Point Research indicates an increase in scams targeting the banking industry globally, with banks “attacked an average of 700 times per week over the past year, a 53% year-on-year increase.” year-on-year,” said Arthur Ng, country manager, Malaysia, Check Point Software Technologies.

The Check Point Threat Intelligence report goes on to point out that all industries and businesses face the specter of cyber risk, but some sectors are more susceptible than others, due to the fact that they are much more frequently targeted, which places these spaces on a much higher level. risk, because more frequent attacks mean a much higher probability of successful intrusions.

Of all industries, the finance and banking industry “stands out” for its large attack surface for scams, not to mention the appeal of bad actors due to the profitability of a scam or breach. successful in this tightly regulated industry.

In Southeast Asia’s largest economies like Singapore and Malaysia, malicious actors are becoming more creative and resourceful in tricking unsuspecting consumers or workers of business entities, such as e-phishing campaigns. -emails that cleverly use social engineering tactics to impersonate legitimate users and demand what might seem like genuine money transfer requests and requests for sensitive personal information.

Scams targeting OCBC bank accounts in Singapore rocked the island nation in late 2021 and early 2022, with a sharp rise in “smishing” scams, which are phishing attempts carried out via text messages. Cybercriminals deceive victims by sending so-called bank text messages claiming that there are problems with their bank accounts or credit cards.

The text messages allegedly contain a link to a fraudulent website, disguised as a legitimate banking website requesting banking information and passwords, leading to at least 790 people being scammed into parting with funds and resulting in losses of at least 13.7 million Singapore dollars. And it was even with OCBC’s use of a Fraud Monitoring System (FSS), the first Singaporean bank to harness artificial intelligence and machine learning to combat financial fraud, which successfully clawed back SG$8 million (US$5.95 million) in fraudulent transactions last year.

Meanwhile, major Malaysian bank Maybank has issued warnings to its customers about the new “SMSSpy” campaign explicitly targeting Android users in Malaysia. SMSSpy malware can view all text messages sent to the mobile phone including obtaining TAC numbers for internet banking.

These cross-causeway SMS-based campaigns show how the scams are very mobile-centric, with the majority of internet banking users in the region accessing it from their smartphones. And as you can see, there is an array of attacks on mobile devices, and it can happen at all levels: malicious apps, network attacks, and exploiting vulnerabilities between mobile hardware and the operating system.

The threat surface affecting organizations is also very wide in the region, with the Check Point Threat Intelligence report highlighting that an organization was attacked 1,286 times per week on average in Malaysia over the past 6 months.

The study indicates that 87% of malicious files delivered in Malaysia in the last 30 days were delivered via email, highlighting the popularity of invasive email scams, as well as other common banking threats such as as disruptive denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks that can invade a system of sensitive financial data and are often the basis of a ransomware attack, as well as sophisticated attacks orchestrated by nation-state-sponsored operators.

According to the country director of Check Point in Malaysia, controlling such a large threat surface means that a country like Malaysia must restructure its legislation. “Government, telecommunications providers and banks all have an active role to play in protecting consumers. However, it takes a lot of time, planning and resources to bring these plans to fruition,” Ng admitted. “A long-term plan will require calibrated management at multiple levels. The good news is that the banks and the government have already started to take steps in the right direction to remedy the situation.

Already, Malaysian online banking services are reducing exposure to scams by encrypting transactions with multi-factor authentication (MFA) and other layers of security, so they will be less dependent on notifying customers through platforms. less secure like SMS. Rather than exposing sensitive services and data to a third-party service provider like SMS systems, strengthen their own perimeter protection so that control is back in the hands of financial institutions.

To secure their networks and internal systems, it is essential for banks in the region to prevent future attacks by leveraging additional security solutions accessible through secure transaction gateways known as Application Programming Interfaces (APIs), that can help further optimize endpoint security. , sealing both user devices and system software.

It is essential that banks seize available security measures as soon as possible, as transaction data and personal and sensitive user data are exposed at an exponential rate in this part of the world.

US air travelers had a miserable weekend — Quartz Daily Brief — Quartz Mon, 20 Jun 2022 10:03:11 +0000

Hello, Quartz readers!

Here’s what you need to know

Colombia elected its first left-wing president. Former Bogotá mayor and guerrilla fighter Gustavo Petro claimed victory after running on a platform to fight inequality.

Bitcoin fell below $20,000. The cryptocurrency crashed over the weekend, hitting its lowest level since December 2020, and continues to hover at the token threshold.

American air travelers faced major disruptions over the weekend. Thousands of flights have been canceled or delayed as airlines battle staff absences.

The head of UN diplomacy condemned fossil fuel companies and their backers. Secretary General Antonio Guterres’ stance has come up against US President Joe Biden’s call for energy producers to drill more oil.

Apple employees have voted to form the company’s first US union. Retail workers at an Apple store in Maryland voted by a nearly 2-to-1 margin to unionize amid a nationwide increase in unionization.

The United States celebrated its second Juneteenth as a federal holiday. Celebrations in the nation’s capital were marred by a shooting at a street party.

The swimming world’s governing body has restricted the participation of transgender athletes in elite competitions. FINA has established hormonal criteria for inclusion in men’s or women’s events.

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Europe is adjusting to further cuts in its natural gas supply after Russia halted or reduced the flow of gas to a dozen countries including Germany, France, Poland and Italy last week last. The fuel cuts coincide with a heatwave that is spreading across Europe from the Mediterranean to the North Sea.

In response, Germany yesterday announced it would restart its coal-fired power plants, a setback for climate policy after the country invested $45 billion to phase out coal by 2030. Italy could be forced to ration gas and burn more coal to meet electricity demand this week, and Spanish power plants are storing gas to prepare for future shortages. In the coming days, more European governments are expected to announce their plans to deal with fuel shortages.

Will Amazon run out of people to hire?

Amazon, the world’s second-largest private employer, may be running out of staff to hire. An internal research note obtained by Recode said the e-commerce giant fears its available workforce in US warehouses will run out very soon.

Amazon played down the implications of the research note, saying it does not represent what is actually happening. But even though the company isn’t on the cusp of a labor shortage, it’s grappling with attrition as employees raise concerns about unsafe work environments and lead efforts of unionization. It’s clear that even Amazon knows it’s getting harder and harder to find people who find the job satisfying.

2024: The year the memo predicts labor supply at Amazon’s U.S. warehouses will dry up

75%: Growth rate of Amazon’s global workforce during the pandemic

70%: Share of Amazon retail sales made in the United States

$18: Amount Amazon raised its minimum wage to, on average

African CEOs love Côte d’Ivoire

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Côte d’Ivoire is reclaiming its reputation as a top investment destination in Francophone Africa – and the continent as a whole, according to the 2022 CEO Barometer survey released at the Africa CEO Forum in Abidjan , the largest annual gathering of the African private sector.

Political stability, business-friendly reforms and a strong economy are key factors in the West African country’s renewed prominence.

Quartz Africa Editor-in-Chief, Ciku Kimeria, explained why companies want to do business in Ivory Coast in Quartz Africa’s latest weekly briefing. Follow the continent’s news by registering today and reading our latest edition.

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Surprising discoveries

Half of Japanese companies may still use Internet Explorer… A report found that a fifth of companies didn’t even plan to switch browsers once Microsoft ended support.

…while in South Korea, Internet Explorer had a final resting place. A software engineer paid 430,000 won ($330) for a tombstone commemorating the browser atop a cafe.

Nepal moves its Everest base camp to a lower altitude. Climate change and overexploitation are melting the Khumbu Glacier where 1,500 people gather each season.

There is already trash on Mars. NASA believes a glowing object photographed between two red rocks is a piece of an aluminum thermal blanket from a 2021 mission.

People save their pee for the farmers. A fertilizer shortage has inspired some Americans to fill jugs with urine to help their local growers boost crop yields.

Our best wishes for a productive day. Send news, comments, Internet Explorer memories and space junk pickers to Reader support makes Quartz accessible to everyone – become a member. Today’s Daily Brief is brought to you by Julia Malleck, Sofia Lotto Persio, Nicolás Rivero, Ana Campoy and Morgan Haefner.

Amazon could move the Supreme Court against the NCLAT Thu, 16 Jun 2022 01:00:00 +0000

Amazon is likely to move the Supreme Court next week against the order of the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal which recently upheld the Competition Commission of India’s December 2021 order regarding non-disclosure by the big business of e-commerce.

The NCLAT order dealt a blow to Amazon as apart from upholding the Rs 200 crore fine imposed by the ICC, it also upheld its suspension of the 2019 deal to acquire a 49% stake in Future Coupons (FCPL). Approval of the deal was granted by CCI in 2019, but after complaints from some parties that certain information was withheld, CCI suspended the deal. The complaints had come after Future Retail’s decision to sell its retail and logistics business to Reliance Retail. This transaction was contested by Amazon because it claimed the first right of refusal of any sale by FRL in its capacity as a 49% stakeholder in FCPL.

“Amazon failed to make fair, frank and direct disclosures regarding the 2019 deal with Future Group. The court agrees with the TCC’s view and thus orders Amazon to deposit Rs 200 crore as penalty,” the court said, while fully agreeing with the TCC that Amazon had provided limited information about its acquisition of strategic rights and interests in Future Retail.

The deal has now fallen through because FRL lenders did not approve it as Reliance Retail had already taken over around 900 stores because Future defaulted on rent payments.

Still, there are cases in the Delhi High Court between FRL and Amazon regarding the matter.

The Delhi High Court Single Judge Bench of Judge C Hari Shankar is already hearing half a dozen cases, including Amazon’s plea seeking enforcement of a Singapore court order halting the sale of Future Group’s retail assets to Reliance Retail and another to prevent Future Retail from further disposing of its assets.

Meanwhile, Amazon has also filed its intervention in the National Company Law Tribunal, Mumbai Bench opposing Bank of India’s insolvency petition against indebted Future Retail on the grounds that the banks colluded with FRL and that bankruptcy proceedings at this stage would compromise his rights.

BoI had in April approached the NCLT to recover the Rs 1,441 crore debt from FRL. The banks’ total exposure to the FRL is estimated at around Rs 17,000 crore, a figure that could rise to Rs 25,000 crore if defaults continue, some creditors had argued earlier.

CRH: Unlocking further growth through mergers and acquisitions with the acquisition of Barrette Tue, 14 Jun 2022 10:14:00 +0000

RicAguiar/E+ via Getty Images

CRH SA (NYSE: CRH), a major player in building materials in the United Kingdom and the United States, is continuing its strategic repositioning with the acquisition of Barrette, a provider of residential fencing and railing solutions, from TorQuest Partners and Caisse de Quebec Deposit and Placement (CDPQ) for $1.9 billion. The deal fits well with its plans to move distribution away from the US (~55% of sales) and European (~35% of sales) infrastructure and residential markets. More broadly, this also highlights CRH’s ability to recycle capital in an accretive manner, given that the acquisition follows the acquisition of approximately $3.8 billion. arrangement of its Building Envelope business and is accompanied by an attractive post-synergy valuation multiple. As CRH unlocks more value from its capital allocation strategy and achieves its growth objectives over time, the stock is expected to revalue against peers such as Kingspan (OTCPK: KGSPY) and Geberit AG (OTCPK: GBERY).

CRH vs EV peers to EBITDA
Data by YCharts

Barrette Acquisition Details

Mergers and acquisitions have always been at the heart of CRH’s growth model, but their importance has increased in recent years as the company conducts a strategic repositioning of its activities. In this vein, CRH announced an agreement to acquire Barrette Outdoor Living from TorQuest Partners and CDPQ for an enterprise value of $1.9 billion. For context, Barrette is North America’s leading provider of residential fencing and railing solutions sold through specialty retailers, home centers and lumberyards. In particular, the company is focused on improving home improvement maintenance (RMI) with more durable and long-lasting products such as PVC and aluminum, both of which are seeing increased penetration. The transaction price represents a transaction multiple of approximately 10x EV/EBITDA pre-synergies and will be funded by CRH’s well-capitalized balance sheet. Subject to regulatory approval, the deal is expected to close in the second half of 2022.

Accretive recycling of capital

Barrette’s deal follows CRH’s sale of its Building Envelope business for an enterprise value of $3.8 billion (including $3.5 billion in cash and $0.35 billion from the transfer lease liabilities), implying an EV/EBITDA multiple of around 11x. In comparison, Barrette maintains margins of around 20% on an EBITDA of 190 million dollars, the pre-synergy multiple of around 10x EV/EBITDA implying an accretive recycling of capital by CRH. That said, I suspect there is still plenty of room for the multiple to sink even lower to <8x EV/EBITDA as the business drives value creation through the realization of post-deal synergies.

Remember from CRH’s latest investor update that on the capital allocation front, much of the long-term value creation option will be driven by growth investments such as acquisitions targeted and platform mergers and acquisitions, as well as expansion investments. Excess cash will then be allocated to shareholder returns, presenting an advantage over the current single-digit annual growth in dividends and share buybacks (currently at a rate of $1.2 billion per year). Compared to the company’s forecast of approximately $30 billion in capital deployment over the next five years, an increase in net debt/EBITDA to approximately 1x in 2022 (vs. approximately 0.6x previously) still leaves >20 billions of dollars of financial capacity after the transaction. Thus, I see ample room for further upside through more trades and redemptions through 2025.

CRH financial capacity objectives


Positive strategic implications

From a strategic perspective, the Barrette product suite fits perfectly with CRH’s Architectural Products (APG) business, which includes residential fencing and railing solutions in North America. It should be noted that Barrette has strong positions in the market for patio, decking, lawn and garden products, which, added to CRH’s APG segment, should extend the avenue for growth and margin improvement. Its main sales channels (consumer and professional) are also similar, while the expanded range should strengthen CRH’s share of wallet over time. While skeptics may push back on the addition of Barrette’s RMI exposure at this point in the cycle, I would say the product suite also allows CRH to capitalize on the structural trend of PVC/vinyl use/conversion in the categories of fences and terraces (mainly for reasons of durability). Overall, the series of transactions is in line with CRH’s focus on building horizontally (ie infrastructure and residential) and should generate a less cyclical earnings base over the long term.

Unleashing Further M&A-Led Growth with Acquisition of Barrette

Overall, I view the acquisition of Barrette for $1.9 billion as another positive step for CRH, adding clear strategic benefits by improving the Architectural Products business at a reasonable pre-synergy EV/EBITDA multiple. ‘about 10x. This could drop below ~8x though, depending on synergies, which I believe demonstrates management’s discipline and ability to recycle capital accretively. That said, the acquisition is not too large in the context of the group as it represents a mid-single-digit % of the group’s EV and therefore there is still plenty of flexibility in the balance sheet for new reinvestments or returns to shareholders all the way. At the current valuation of ~6x EV/EBITDA, CRH stock is trading well below its peers (e.g. Kingspan and Geberit) despite a promising growth trajectory driven by M&A and a less cyclical earnings profile .

Two cryptocurrencies in Hodl until 2023 for generational wealth: Gnox Token (GNOX) and Fantom (FTM) Sun, 12 Jun 2022 09:21:00 +0000 For cryptocurrencies, the start of 2022 has been nothing short of a roller coaster ride. Although the cryptocurrency market has had a tough few weeks recently, its steady recovery offers a ray of hope.

Investing in cryptocurrencies can make people rich, but it can also potentially make them lose their money.

If you want to gain direct exposure to digital currency demand, cryptocurrency is a good investment. This article presents the top two cryptocurrencies in Hodl through 2023 for generational wealth.

Gnox Token (GNOX)

Gnox builds a decentralized ecosystem that compensates holders of its native currency passively. It is the first DeFi earning protocol to provide yield farming as a service to individual and institutional investors.

A ten percent tax is applied to each transaction, with six percent of the proceeds going to the DeFi treasury. This cash is used by Gnox to offer liquidity to safe pools while earning interest. Their holders share a portion of the rewards generated from these BUSD investments based on the size of their portfolio.

Gnox’s goal is to help newcomers to the crypto industry with an easy-to-use DeFi earning solution. They urge investors to buy, hold and profit while they take care of the dirty work.

Gnox techniques, according to DeFi experts, will change the DeFi space. Even those with less expertise can receive benefits that far exceed any interest-bearing financial instrument.

Ghost (FTM)

Throughout 2021, Fantom has grown at a rate that far exceeds all expectations.

The network is increasingly well-known in the cryptocurrency world for its near-zero transaction fees and near-instantaneous transactions.

With Fantom’s latest update, which went live in late April, the platform’s rapid expansion shows no signs of slowing down. To give you an idea of ​​the size of the platform, it hosts over 200,000 daily transactions and has over 77,000 Fantom wallets.

Fantom, like Ethereum, is a layer-1 blockchain network dedicated to advancing the DeFi space. It uses the Lachesis consensus process to address scalability issues in the DeFi sector. A modified proof-of-stake (PoS) technique is used.

Each network created with Fantom is essentially self-contained. This allows developers to easily move their Ethereum-based dApps to the Fantom Opera mainnet. Its unique characteristics have also contributed to its rapid growth, with many DeFi applications relying on its network.


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Mastercard partners with Immutable X, the sandbox for crypto-free NFT purchases Fri, 10 Jun 2022 23:31:11 +0000

Global payment technology company Mastercard now allows the purchase of non-fungible tokens (NFTs) using fiat.

For the new project, Mastercard has partnered with Immutable X, a layer 2 network for Ethereum. The company will also work with NFT-based online game The Sandbox, fintech company MoonPay, and NFT platforms Nifty Gateway, Candy Digital, Spring, and Mintable.

Mastercard and NFT

With the Mastercard initiative, people interested in NFTs can purchase them without needing to acquire the crypto first. This way, buyers are relieved of the “stress and uncertainty” that might be part of getting an NFT, especially for less tech-savvy people.

On the other hand, NFT creators are exposed to a larger audience, which likely leads to growth in their customer base.

As for security, Mastercard promises to “enhance customer security” and “protect user data” for people who purchase NFTs with its card. The project will likely discourage bad actors who seek to defraud people of their digital works. The hype in NFTs following million dollar sales and celebrity endorsements has attracted scammers, as would anything popular.

Late last month, a Moonbird NFT holder lost his 29 NFTs worth $1.5 million to fraud. The malicious buyer demanded that he complete the transaction on a private platform, only to evade his end of the deal.

Another motivating factor behind Mastercard’s latest development is a survey released this month. Of the 35,000 people surveyed in 40 countries, 45% said they had purchased an NFT or were considering doing so. About half suggested flexible payment options, i.e. paying with a credit or debit card, other than crypto.

“We believe the process of purchasing an NFT should be simpler and more secure,” reads Mastercard’s news section.

Additional Notes

Besides the aforementioned entities, Mastercard partnered with Coinbase NFT for a similar product in January.

More recently, the payment company created a joint venture with Nexo – a platform offering crypto loans. Mastercard now provides the Nexo card, allowing users to spend their debts with their cryptocurrencies as collateral.

According to Mastercard, it distributed 2.9 billion payment cards worldwide. Meanwhile, the NFT sector continues to gain momentum, having reached a record revenue of $25 billion in 2021. The company’s latest project now seeks to explore the potential of the NFT industry, in addition to promote its adoption.


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FinEx says the assets of its Russian Eurobond ETF have disappeared | ETF strategy Thu, 09 Jun 2022 08:36:34 +0000

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Anglo-Russian ETF issuer FinEx announced that investors in the FinEx Tradable Russian Corporate Bonds UCITS ETF suffered heavy losses from the fund’s currency hedging contracts.

Most ETF investors holding Russian assets are locked in pending the lifting of sanctions.

Historically, the ETF offered exposure to US dollar and Euro denominated “Eurobonds” issued by Russian corporate issuers. The fund’s underlying benchmark was the Bloomberg Tradable Russian Corporate Bond Index.

At the start of the year, the ETF had two classes of shares – a currency-hedged share class denominated in rubles and listed on the Moscow Stock Exchange (Teleprinter: FXRB RM) and a US dollar-denominated share class listed on the London Stock Exchange (FXRU LN).

However, both share classes were effectively suspended in early March when the Russian Eurobond market nearly seized up due to international sanctions imposed on Russia following its invasion of Ukraine.

According to data from TrackInsight, at the end of February 2022, FXRB housed 853 million rubles (about $14 million) while FXRU held $62 million.

The ETF now officially does not track any indices – index providers no longer consider Russian Eurobonds as tradable investment assets. A statement from FinEx in March said the fund would continue to hold the underlying Eurobonds while reinvesting any proceeds received from the bonds into money market instruments. Due to the state of the Russian Eurobond market, the ETF has not calculated its net asset value for months.

To complicate matters further, even if all of the ETF’s assets were sold, investors would likely not be able to receive the proceeds, as the sanctions also blocked trading between European and Russian custodians. Such a transaction would likely be frozen by the fund’s settlement agent, Euroclear.

Investors in the ETF have essentially been locked in pending the lifting of sanctions so that the Eurobond market and inter-custodian trading can resume normal operation.

However, FinEx revealed on June 1 that FXRB suffered losses in early March – due to its currency hedging contracts – so large that all assets in the share class were wiped out.

The losses came because the ruble cratered nearly 40% against the US dollar almost immediately after sanctions were imposed on Russia, including on the country’s sovereign wealth fund. FXRB’s FX contracts, which are long the ruble to implement the share class’ currency hedge, felt the full impact of this event.

To cover losses from the foreign exchange contracts, FXRB had to sell its underlying Eurobonds just as the Eurobond market had dried up – sellers of Eurobonds at that time would have received approximately 20% of the value of a bond compared to shortly before the start of the invasion.

FXRB’s foreign exchange contract losses were in fact so severe that FinEx also had to sell some of the underlying Eurobonds to FXRU to meet FXRB’s obligations. According to FinEx, FXRU absorbed about $6.4 million in losses in this regard.

FinEx states that using FXRU’s assets to cover FXRB’s losses was justified as both are share classes of the same fund, their assets are not segregated and therefore each share class is not not immune to the losses suffered by the other.

Regarding the delay in reporting these events, FinEx argues that there was no reason for public disclosure as the future of FXRU and FXRB was still being decided by regulators – it appears that FinEx was finally forced to divulge these details as they were. required to publish the financial statements of the umbrella company, FinEx Funds, on June 1.

Why PayPal will let you send crypto to external wallets Tue, 07 Jun 2022 17:06:04 +0000

Payment processor PayPal will allow users to transfer their crypto to external wallets and exchanges, according to a statement from Jose Fernandez da Ponte, the company’s senior vice president. The new feature was highly requested by users, the executive confirmed.

Related Reading | Crypto Market Downtrend Resumes, Here’s What Ethereum Whales Are Buying

According to a report from TechCrunch, Managing Director of Blockchain, Crypto and Digital Currencies at PayPal, da Ponte said:

This feature was the most requested by our users since we started offering the purchase of crypto on our platform.

In the past, PayPal users were allowed to buy Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, and other cryptocurrencies. Initially, users were only allowed to hold the digital assets to gain exposure to their prices.

Eventually, PayPal announced that it was going to allow crypto funds to pay for products and services. This crypto-checkout feature was the latest step, so far, in the company’s strategy to expand into the digital asset space.

The new crypto withdrawal feature will give users more freedom. However, they will have to pay network fees when sending a transaction from their PayPal accounts to external wallets.

These transaction fees vary from blockchain to blockchain. On Ethereum, when network congestion is high, transaction fees can double the initial amount, making it one of the most expensive blockchains.

PayPal to PayPal transfers will remain easy for users, but users will need to complete an additional layer of identity verification. External Withdrawal functionality will gradually be available across the United States. Fernandez da Ponte added:

If users have crypto elsewhere and want to consolidate it, they can bring it to PayPal from external addresses. They can also send crypto to anyone in the PayPal system.

The executive hinted at this new feature last year. Fernandez da Ponte, as he told TechCrunch, thinks the ability to send and receive crypto transactions is a natural step for the platform and an improvement for users “who want to do more with their digital assets. “.

What PayPal’s crypto initiative meant for the industry

The payment processor announced its crypto offering in October 2020. At that time, the news was seen as one of the main catalysts for a Bitcoin bull run that took the cryptocurrency from a yearly low of 3 $500 to over $65,000 in subsequent months.

PayPal allowing its users to buy, sell and hold digital assets was the first announcement of a new adoption trend that saw the first publicly traded company in the United States integrate BTC into its balance sheet, and the largest company in the world to adopt it as a method of payment.

Fernandez da Ponte told TechCrunch that the company wants to act as a bridge for users to transact between the fiat world and the world of digital assets. He said:

We see ourselves as an intermediary between the fiat environment, or traditional finance, and the Web3 environment. We enable connectivity to other wallets, exchanges and apps.

The crypto market has nearly reached a market capitalization of $3 trillion from the time PayPal first announced its digital asset service until 2021 when the company launched its crypto payment service. Lately, the sector has lost more than 50% of its value.

The total crypto market capitalization is moving sideways on the 4-hour chart. Source: commercial view

Related Reading | Getting Paid to Save the Earth with DeFi: Too Good to Be True?

However, Fernandez da Ponte says the company has long-term plans for the space:

This decision shows that we are here for the long haul. I think it’s important to stay the course and continue to invest in space.

Recent Terra Fallout Triggers Regulatory Actions in Japan, South Korea, US and UK Sun, 05 Jun 2022 10:08:46 +0000

The collapse of native Terra ecosystem assets LUNC and USDT in May raised concerns about investor protection and called into question the “stability” of stablecoins. The crash not only demonstrated the volatility of digital assets, but also highlighted the fragility of this nascent space. In response, various financial authorities and regulators around the world have shown even greater interest in the space over the past few weeks.

Here’s a roundup of jurisdictions where regulators have stepped up their efforts:

South Korea to institute digital asset regulator this month

Last week, South Korean authorities met to discuss the consequences of Terra and reportedly questioned several exchanges, including Upbit. Calls for strict regulation have compelled the government to set up a digital asset committee to oversee the digital asset space, according to a local report.

The committee, which will be unveiled later this month, will work with a joint body of representatives from the five major local exchanges – Bithumb, Coinone, Cobit, Gopax and Upbit. It will operate under the Financial Watchdog but will be dissolved after the enactment of the “Digital Assets Framework Law”, which will introduce a formal government entity to oversee the sector. The question of which body oversees the Korean crypto space was without a concrete answer before the Terra crash.

The Financial Supervision Service has only recently taken on the role of assessing and mitigating the risk presented by the virtual assets offered at the national level. This was after being given the authority to act as the principal authority on matters relating to virtual assets. The FSS has since announced its intention to delegate search operations to public trust institutions as a first step in this direction.

Operators of digital asset trading platforms have also been banned from seeking exposure to crypto assets. This comes after the revelation that Upbit, under Dunamu, had exposure to LUNC before listing the asset on its platform in 2019. The decision to ban exchange operators from engaging in transactions and brokerage transactions aims to improve transparency.

UK and US regulators warn of risks stablecoins pose after UST implosion

Outside of Korea, other jurisdictions have stepped up their regulatory efforts driven by the need to anticipate the potential threat that stablecoins pose to financial stability. The UK, in particular, is concerned about the damage stablecoins can cause to the wider financial system.

“Since the initial commitment to regulate certain types of stablecoins, events in the crypto-asset markets have further underscored the need for appropriate regulation to help mitigate risk to consumers, market integrity, and security. financial stability”, Her Majesty’s Treasury described in a three-part consultation document.

The government will allow the country’s financial watchdog, the Financial Conduct Authority, to oversee the payment space. The document also recommended that the Bank of England, on the other hand, manage systemically important payment systems.

US financial agencies were equally concerned. Rohit Chopra, the head of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, said in an interview with Bloomberg that the crash disproved the idea that stablecoins could replace the dollar.

Japan bans the issuance of stablecoins by non-bank entities

Japan’s parliament on Friday passed a bill that limits the issuance of stablecoins to registered transfer agents, banking institutions and trust companies only. The new framework aims to protect investors and safeguard the financial system from the instability that could result from the adoption of stablecoins.

The legislation is expected to come into force next year, the Nikkei news outlet reported. Japan’s financial watchdog, the Financial Services Agency, is also preparing to separately file new regulations for stablecoin issuers in the coming months.

Metaverse Index and ETF: Latest Financial Innovations Make Investing in NFTs Safer Fri, 03 Jun 2022 17:39:58 +0000

Investing in the Metaverse and NFT industry is possible through various options. Although it requires a degree of cryptocurrency awareness and expertise, buying non-fungible crypto assets and tokens is the easiest. However, using the Metaverse index or an NFT ETF changes that narrative for the better.

More investment vehicles are beneficial

The metaverse continues to generate a lot of media headlines, mainly due to growing interest from established tech players and brands. Companies like Meta FacebookGoogle GOOGLApple AAPLMicrosoft MSFTand Nike NKE conducted research and development regarding the opportunities of the metaverse. Moreover, a virtual world blurring the lines with the real world introduces many opportunities to transform commerce, social activities and work.

As these companies generate excitement for the metaverse, people are increasingly looking for new investment opportunities. Many missed the initial cryptocurrency bandwagon and only started paying attention to digital assets when Bitcoin hit $40,000. Although the leading cryptocurrency still has huge upside potential, so does Ethereum ETH/USD and others – many people feel they have lost the opportunity to get in “early and cheap”.

With the Metaverse and NFTs, things are a bit different, however. Both trends are still relatively new, although several projects have already achieved multi-million dollar sales per asset. Examples include CryptoPunks and Bored Ape Yacht Club – two prominent NFT projects still generating massive sales volume today. Metaverse projects including Axie Infinity, The Sandbox, and Decentraland have succeeded in their own way, with over $100 million in investment and a market capitalization of several billion dollars in total.

Setting up an NFT or Metaverse wallet often requires investing in multiple projects and hoping for the best, so to speak. Fortunately, things are looking up a bit on that front. The recent addition of the Metaverse Index (MVI) and the Defiance Digital Revolution ETF makes things more accessible and simpler.

Why the Metaverse Index Matters

The Metaverse Index provides price exposure to the performance of over a dozen promising and prominent Metaverse projects. It’s an attractive option for those looking to invest in the broader metaverse space without committing to a specific project.

The crucial benefits of an investment vehicle like the Metaverse Index include:

  • A simple way to capture a growing market trend (Metaverse) without requiring investors to search and rebalance their portfolio manually

  • An index – basket of tokens – can offset the volatility of one or more tokens

  • A more efficient approach to buying and selling individual tokens with reduced transaction costs

  • Transparent process and rules for including/removing tokens

The Metaverse index is accessible on the Ethereum mainnet, which means that it does not require any centralized service provider to allow users to access this investment option. Users can interface directly with the token address to make an investment, making it a universally accessible vehicle.

The benefits of the NFT ETF

An exchange-traded fund is primarily a passive means of seeking price exposure. ETFs are found in many sectors, including finance, technology and now non-fungible tokens (NFTs). Investors are exposed to the performance of industry players that are catalyzing the widespread adoption of this technology. And NFT ETFs are emerging in the crypto world as The Defiance Digital Revolution ETF.

With NFT ETFs, they are democratizing access to investing in an exchange-traded fund that follows one of the most attractive trends in cryptocurrency and blockchain today. Additionally, an ETF eliminates the need for users to go through a steep learning curve on NFTs and individual projects in this space. Additionally, users are exposed to multiple collections and their value for money through the ETF, rather than having to purchase coins from individual collections, which can result in high transaction fees.

More investment vehicles to follow

When it comes to investment preferences, there are plenty of alternative options in the NFT market, as well as cryptocurrency brokerage services and even regular trading operations. NFT markets are of particular interest in this regard, as they can sell single assets at flat rates or run auctions for any number of accepted currencies. Investors should look into the given market and look for items of interest that they can bid on and possibly acquire for later resale or collection. The resemblance of marketplaces to traditional auction houses is present, as evidenced by OpenSea, which positions itself as a place for the sale of rare digital objects and collectibles. There are many alternative platforms including NBA Topshot, Rarible, Nifty Gateway, Axie, Mintable, Foundation and others.

KuCoin recently supported the launch of two funds to strengthen the innovation of the Metaverse space and reduce barriers to investment in the Metaverse for new users – Metaverse Fund launched by KuCoin Labs and The Creator Fund launched by KuCoin Ventures – to invest $100 million each in Metaverse, NFT and Web 3.0 startups, funding these projects to develop and deliver more innovative products. Projects will also receive technical, marketing and consulting support from KuCoin.

If the instant purchase of an NFT is not part of the investor’s plans, he can always resort to venture capital companies engaged in investing in the given market, or to the infrastructure development niches of the NFT and cryptocurrency industry. The downside is that accreditation as an investor is a prerequisite for engaging in venture capital.