Responding to concerns, Coinbase reveals insurance details

Posted on August 27, 2014

As bitcoin becomes an increasingly mainstream mechanism for storing and exchanging value, customer protection is rapidly becoming a major topic of discussion. After all, there is no equivalent of the FDIC in the bitcoin world, and the only protections most users have for the BTC in their hosted wallets are the various security techniques of […]

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Australian government publishes guidelines for bitcoin businesses

Posted on August 27, 2014

Business.gov.au is the Australian government’s official portal for all forms of business in the country down under. It’s the definitive source for details on starting a new business in kangaroo country, providing guides and FAQs for nearly any business-related topic imaginable. This week, the website published its first guide to accepting bitcoin and other digital […]

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BTC China claims 100% proof-of-reserve status following audit

Posted on August 27, 2014

Another of China’s “big three” bitcoin exchanges has seemingly passed a proof-of-reserve audit with flying colors. BTC China announced the results of their audit on Monday, although translations of the full text have only recently become available in English. The audit was verified by a panel of five well-known Chinese bitcoin advocates, who checked BTC […]

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North Carolina to tie virtual currencies to “monetary value” under existing laws, rather than create new regulations

Posted on August 26, 2014

In a story published today on CoinFinance, an unnamed North Carolina Commission of Banks (NCCOB) spokesperson said that regulators in the state were opting to handle bitcoin-based investments and businesses under existing rules. The NCCOB will treat bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies as “monetary value,” as defined in the N.C. Money Transmitters Act. Under those rules, […]

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GoCoin partners with payments company Apriva

Posted on August 26, 2014

Arizona-based wireless point-of-sale technology company Apriva announced today that it has partnered with Singapore-based cryptocurrency payment processor GoCoin, bringing bitcoin, litecoin and dogecoin payments to their network of over 1,000 merchant partners. The move follows GoCoin’s recent launch of an SMS-based digital currency payment gateway and a new partnership with low-cost, prepaid phone service provider […]

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Korean bitcoin exchange Korbit raises $3 million in new funding round

Posted on August 26, 2014

South Korean bitcoin exchange Korbit announced this week that it has joined the ranks of multimillion-dollar bitcoin startup club, gaining $3 million in venture capital in a Series A funding round. The exchange has already received $600,000 in angel and VC investment, bringing its total funding to date to $3.6 million. The most recent round […]

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Newegg expands BTC buying option to Canada

Posted on August 26, 2014

Online tech retailer Newegg announced today that it will be bringing its popular pay-by-bitcoin option to customers in Canada. The company integrated BitPay’s payment platform to their U.S. checkout system in July, becoming the then-largest online store to accept digital currency. (This status was short lived, as Dell, DISH and Expedia adopted bitcoin payments in […]

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Bullion dealer Agora Commodities plans to launch cryptocurrency exchange

Posted on August 25, 2014

In a new CoinDesk profile of bitcoin-friendly precious metals retailer Agora Commodities, the credit-card eschewing bullion company dropped an interesting detail about their future plans. Agora founder Joseph Castillo told the website that his company is in the process of preparing to open a new digital currency exchange. Although there was no stated timeline for […]

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Chamber of Digital Commerce forms political action committee to steer Washington’s bitcoin position

Posted on August 25, 2014

The Hill reported today that the recently formed bitcoin-business advocacy group the Chamber of Digital Commerce has formally registered a new political spending group with the Federal Election Commission. Chamber CEO Perianne Boring, a former White House intern and legislative analyst for Rep. Dennis Ross (R-FL), told The Hill that the political action committee (PAC) […]

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Mycelium Entropy USB stick rockets past crowdfunding goal

Posted on August 25, 2014

Last month, cryptocurrency wallet-software provider Mycelium introduced Entropy, an open-source, multi-signature enabled USB-stick based paper wallet generator. The company had already tested a limited batch of the devices in a closed beta, and was taking to popular crowd-funding website Indiegogo to raise the $20,000 needed to produce the second batch on a more commercial scale. […]

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BitGive Foundation becomes first tax-exempt bitcoin charity in U.S.

Posted on August 25, 2014

The BitGive Foundation announced today that it has been officially granted 501(c)(3) status from the IRS, making it the first tax-exempt bitcoin charity in the U.S. The organization is now able to provide a tax deduction to donors, including those who donate directly in BTC, greatly enhancing the potential for fundraising. With their new tax […]

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BitPay exec sees major European merchant adoption “soon”

Posted on August 24, 2014

Here in the U.S., major businesses like Overstock, TigerDirect, Expedia and DISH are happily adopting bitcoin. While it could be argued that this first-wave adoption is more about free publicity than it is about the future of payments, it does beg a question: If bitcoin is a global phenomenon, why are all the major merchant […]

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ESPN paid in BTC for BitPay sponsorship

Posted on August 23, 2014

At a press conference about the upcoming Bitcoin St. Petersburg Bowl in St. Petersburg, FL, BitPay executive chairman Tony Gallippi revealed an interesting detail about the company’s sponsorship deal with ESPN Events: The payment was made in BTC rather than dollars. While not entirely surprising given that BitPay is a bitcoin payment processor, and the […]

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First bitcoin ATM launched in Manhattan

Posted on August 22, 2014

It may seem strange, but while bitcoin ATMs are popping up all over London, Canada, Southeast Asia, Africa and other far-flung locales, the city that arguably serves as the financial capital of the world, New York City, didn’t have one. Until today, that is. TechCrunch reports that the first bitcoin ATM in NYC has launched […]

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Cryptocurrency-based cloud-storage platform Storj raises 910 BTC in crowdsale

Posted on August 22, 2014

Distributed data storage service Storj announced the results of its first crowdfunding effort this week. The company raised 910 BTC in its first round, which ran from July 18 to Aug. 18, bringing in the equivalent of $470,200. Storj has a long-term funding goal of 9,800 BTC ($5 million). In a post-crowdsale report on Storj’s […]

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China’s OKCoin passes audit with 104.86% of customer BTC in reserve

Posted on August 22, 2014

Chinese bitcoin exchange OKCoin have announced the results of their recent audit, revealing that the exchange holds 104% of the BTC needed to all cover customer deposits. The audit was conducted over four days by Ripple Labs CTO Stefan Thomas, who performed similar audits for Kraken and BitFinex earlier this year. OKCoin announced the results […]

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Ross Ulbricht faces new narcotics charges in Silk Road case

Posted on August 22, 2014

Prosecutors have added three new charges to the case against Ross Ulbricht, the man the Feds believe to be “Dread Pirate Roberts,” the mastermind behind the now-closed online black marketplace Silk Road. Ulbricht, 30, will now face additional charges of narcotics trafficking, distribution of narcotics by means of the internet, and conspiracy to traffic in […]

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International mail-forwarding company Shipito adds bitcoin payment option

Posted on August 21, 2014

International shipping logistics is a tricky game to master. While many in the U.S. take the ease and relatively low costs of ordering online for granted, customers in more far-flung countries don’t have it so lucky. In the best case, they pay a hefty premium for having their order shipped internationally, and in many cases […]

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Second state-approved Thai bitcoin exchange suggests reversal on “bitcoin ban”

Posted on August 21, 2014

The Bangkok Post reported this week that Thailand’s business authorities have officially registered bitcoin exchange Coins Co., making the company a fully legal e-commerce company in the country. The move strongly suggests that the seemingly hostile attitude towards digital currency seen earlier this year from Thai authorities, including a statement from the Bank of Thailand […]

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NYDFS extends comment period on proposed BitLicense regulations

Posted on August 21, 2014

The New York Department of Financial Services (NYDFS) has extended the public comment period around their proposed “BitLicense” regulation for digital currency-related businesses operating in the state’s jurisdiction. In an update published today to the NYDFS website, the regulatory agency said that the extension came in response to a “significant amount of public interest in […]

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With 40% of customer payments in BTC, online bullion seller Amagi Metals to go bitcoin-only on 2016

Posted on August 21, 2014

Last week, online precious metals retailer Amagi Metals announced that it will no longer be directly accepting U.S. dollars for purchases of bullion and coins. The move will not take effect immediately, with dollar-backed purchases enabled through the end of 2016. Amagi is often cited among the first generation of bitcoin-accepting merchants, adopting a bitcoin-purchasing […]

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Overstock confirms Sept. 1 launch of international bitcoin buying option

Posted on August 20, 2014

After months of speculation, Overstock.com CEO Patrick Byrne confirmed yesterday that his company will be enabling buy-with-bitcoin options on their international site, O.co, starting Sept. 1. Although the move was known to be the works since July, the date of the bitcoin-buying service expansion wasn’t known beyond a general “within a few months” estimate. The […]

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Judge says bitcoin “clearly qualifies as money” in case against accused money launderer Robert Faiella

Posted on August 20, 2014

In January, Federal prosecutors charged Robert Faiella and Charlie Shrem with a scheme to launder more than $1 million in drug money through now-shuttered online black marketplace Silk Road. A significant portion of case hinges on the idea that Faiella and Shrem were operating an unlicensed money-transmitting business, even though that transmission largely took place […]

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Return to status quo as bitcoin mining difficulty increases in the double digits

Posted on August 20, 2014

Since July 12, bitcoin miners have had a much-needed break from the relentless growth in the mining difficulty. As one of the key metrics determining just how profitable a mining operation is, and a relative measure of how much competition there is to solve the next block in the block chain and gain a 25 […]

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Chain raises $9.5 million for block chain API development

Posted on August 20, 2014

San Fransisco-based bitcoin development house Chain is already well ahead of the curve when it comes to raising venture capital. In January, the startup raised $4.2 million to further develop its API for bitcoin’s block chain, enabling a new suite of mobile apps to quickly and easily interact with the cryptocurrency network’s data. Clearly, investors […]

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IRS-compliant bitcoin accounting program LibraTax nearing beta launch

Posted on August 19, 2014

If there is a single issue slowing mainstream business adoption of bitcoin, it’s the still-tricky problem of accounting. Although the IRS has offered some guidance on how bitcoin should be treated, and Intuit Labs has made some headway in bitcoin invoicing, there is still no one-stop solution for fully integrating bitcoin payments into their tax […]

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Electronic Transactions Association CEO says payments industry thawing icy attitude towards bitcoin

Posted on August 19, 2014

In an interview published today by CoinDesk, Electronic Transactions Association (ETA) CEO Jason Oxman said that the global payments industry may be warming its icy attitude towards bitcoin. Oxman cited the recent partnership agreement between Global Payments and BitPay as a good indicator that the tone of the conversation towards bitcoin is changing for traditional […]

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Singapore’s BitX secures $800k in venture capital funding for emerging market expansion plans

Posted on August 19, 2014

Venture capitalists and angel investors are betting big on bitcoin’s appeal in emerging-market economies, a trend only reinforced by BitX’s latest fundraising announcement. The Singapore-based bitcoin services provider revealed today that it has raised $824,000 in a seed-funding round. Investors include London-based Ariadne Capital and Palo Alto-based investor Carol Realini, as well seemingly ubiquitous bitcoin-backer […]

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Bitcoin hashrate crosses 200 PH/s … and still climbing

Posted on August 19, 2014

Strange things are afoot in the bitcoin mining world. The overall hashrate of the network made a gigantic leap today, climbing from an already impressive 171 petahashes per second to an incredible 206 petahashes per second in a matter of hours. For perspective, bitcoin only crossed the 1 PH/s threshold in September of 2013. Put […]

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Russian social media tycoon launches block chain visualizer BlockTrail

Posted on August 18, 2014

As one of the co-founders of Russian social media hub VK (formerly VKontakte), Lev Leviev knows a thing or two about turning a solid tech idea into a money-making enterprise. VK is now the second-largest social networking site in Europe, second only to Facebook, and is generally placed in the top 20 most popular websites […]

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$309 BTC-e flash crash adds to bitcoin margin-trading concerns

Posted on August 18, 2014

Last week, for still-unclear reasons, bitcoin’s price dropped dramatically. In the days since, blame for the “flash crash” has fallen squarely on the relatively new phenomenon of cryptocurrency derivatives, and on margin trading in particular. Adding further fuel to that argument was what happened after the crash: Bitcoin’s price began to steadily climb back to […]

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Blockchain explorer Blockr.io acquired by Coinbase

Posted on August 18, 2014

Coinbase announced today that they have acquired up-and-coming blockchain explorer Blockr.io. The deal with the Slovenian company has seemingly been in the works for some time, as Blockr.io engineer Sašo Matejina and designer Samo Drole have already relocated to Coinbase’s hometown of San Francisco. The acquisition brings Coinbase’s team up to 40 full-time employees. Although […]

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Bitcoin-focused security firm Wiz Technologies may be on the verge of cracking Mt.Gox heist

Posted on August 18, 2014

The collapse of Mt.Gox still looms large in the bitcoin world. In a matter of weeks, the once-iconic Tokyo-based exchange crumbled amid vague and as-yet unsubstantiated claims of hacking. Not surprisingly, many have since come to suspect that there’s more to the Mt.Gox story than has been revealed. Without access to the company’s internal database, […]

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Kraken to launch Japanese exchange

Posted on August 17, 2014

San Francisco-based cryptocurrency exchange Kraken is no stranger to the international bitcoin market. Although the company is based in the U.S., the exchange doesn’t do much business in dollars, preferring instead to avoid the finicky, risk-averse, account-closure prone American banking system as much as possible. While most of its business is in euros, Kraken’s founder […]

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GoCoin launches SMS-based bitcoin payments

Posted on August 16, 2014

Earlier this week, cryptocurrency-based payment system GoCoin launched a new payment system allowing merchants to initiate digital currency payments via SMS or email. The “Click-to-Bill” system, outlined in an article on CoinDesk, is currently aimed at the pre-paid phone market, and will allow customers to easily top-up bitcoin, litecoin and dogecoin-connected accounts without the need […]

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Ripple Labs strikes deal with co-founder Jed McCaleb to prevent massive selloff of XRP

Posted on August 15, 2014

In May, Ripple Labs co-founder Jed McCaleb announced that he was planning to sell off his holdings of XRP after a seemingly acrimonious split from the company. As one of the founders of the Ripple project, McCaleb owns 9 billion XRP, or nearly 9% of the total supply of Ripple’s currency tokens. The announcement sent […]

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Coinbase announces three new merchant partners

Posted on August 15, 2014

In a new post on the company’s blog, Coinbase announced three new partners for their merchant platform: Xsolla, Terminal and Demand Food. While not as high-profile as DISH or 1-800-Flowers, all three companies have major presences in the respective market niches and suggest a rapidly growing trend of bitcoin merchant adoption in regional and mid-sized […]

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PetaMine backs out of plan to switch to P2Pool, sticks with GHash.io

Posted on August 15, 2014

Shortly after bitcoin-mining megapool GHash.io caused panic across the cryptocurrency community by briefly gaining 51% of the total bitcoin network hashing power, several smaller mining collectives decided it was time to investigate alternatives. Mid-sized, shareholder-owned mining collective PetaMine was one of those groups, deciding in a much-discussed vote to point their miners away from the […]

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eBay-owned payment system Braintree “in talks” to accept bitcoin

Posted on August 15, 2014

Mechant-focused online payment gateway Braintree may soon become the first eBay-owned product to experiment with bitcoin payments. The Wall Street journal reported yesterday that Braintree was “in talks” with Coinbase and other bitcoin payment processors to launch a new digital currency payment option. Should a deal be reached, the impact on the bitcoin ecosystem could […]

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Head of Singapore’s central bank says digital currencies present risks, but also “have a role to play”

Posted on August 14, 2014

In recent interview with trade publication CentralBanking.com, Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) Managing Director Ravi Menon addressed an issue that is rapidly becoming a very hot topic in the regulation world: Digital currency. As Singapore’s central bank, the MAS has a great deal of power over how any financial instrument is used in the country, […]

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DISH offically launches bitcoin payments

Posted on August 14, 2014

In May, Dish Network made headlines across the tech media for becoming the largest company to date to adopt bitcoin payments. The announcement did come with a caveat: Although the company’s partnership with Coinbase was formalized, actual payment integration wasn’t expected for several months as DISH worked out the kinks in the new system. After […]

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BitPay’s new hires suggest major mainstream push in the works

Posted on August 14, 2014

TechCrunch reports today that Atlanta-based bitcoin payment processor BitPay is finally putting some of their $30 million venture capital cash to work. The company has hired three new heavy hitters to fill out its ranks, suggesting that a major expansion is in the works. The new hires are notable for their significant payments industry experience. […]

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Is today’s price crash solely the result of a new bitcoin derivates market?

Posted on August 14, 2014

While most of the Western bitcoin trading world was asleep this morning, the bitcoin market was inexplicably crashing. Around 3 a.m. EST, a series of largely automated events on BitFinex caused the price to collapse from the $525 range to a staggering $451. While the drop lasted for a matter of seconds, the price has […]

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Circle CEO Jeremy Allaire says that proposed BitLicense will force company to block service in NY

Posted on August 13, 2014

As the public comment period for the proposed New York Department of Financial Services (NYDFS) “BitLicense” draws to a close, the bitcoin community is segregating into two broad camps. On one side are the privacy-minded, regulation-resistant types who are generally skeptical of the need for government oversight of an exchange system that was specifically designed […]

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Overstock CEO claims bitcoin sales will add 4 cents per share to year-end earnings

Posted on August 13, 2014

According to a report published today by Reuters, Overstock CEO Patrick Byrne estimates that bitcoin sales will account for 4 cents in profit per share of the company in 2014. Byrne told the news outlet that current EPS projections for the company are 75-80 cents per share, making bitcoin’s contribution far from insignificant. The company […]

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BitLicense protestors create “Bitcoin Blackout” campaign for August 20

Posted on August 13, 2014

Few recent developments in the bitcoin world have been as controversial as the proposed New York Department of Financial Services (NYDFS) “BitLicense” plan. The regulation would seek to place standard bank-like controls on bitcoin-related businesses in New York, including a range of know-your-customer rules and anti-money laundering controls. With increased anonymity and a lack of […]

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Argentina’s BitPagos launches new in-store bitcoin buying service in 8,000 locations

Posted on August 13, 2014

Argentina-based bitcoin payment system BitPagos announced this week that it will soon be launching a new service to bring in-store bitcoin buying to over 8,000 convenience stores in the country. The service, dubbed Ripio, will use an existing in-store network created by prepaid cell phone provider TeleRecargas. Although the new network is expected to come […]

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Payza brings bitcoin-buying option to 190 countries

Posted on August 12, 2014

Online merchant service and payment processor Payza announced yesterday that will be bringing a new “withdraw funds by bitcoin” option to users in 190 countries. The system effectively makes Payza into a bitcoin brokerage, much like Coinbase, allowing users to instantly buy bitcoin. Although the price is locked at time of payment, purchases are subject […]

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Report: JP Morgan’s bitcoin-clone patent denied

Posted on August 12, 2014

The International Business Times reports that JP Morgan’s long-rumored bitcoin clone, informally dubbed “web cash,” has once again been denied a U.S. patent. The system, described as a “method and system for processing internet payments using the electronic funds transfer network,” was originally submitted for patent consideration in August of last year. Unconfirmed reports by […]

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New Y Combinator-backed bitcoin debit card testing in San Francisco

Posted on August 12, 2014

If San Francisco-based bitcoin startup Shift Payments has its way, Xapo’s newly launched debit card system may soon have some serious competition. The Y Combinator-backed company announced that it was currently testing a new debit card system enabling users to pay with existing bitcoin and Ripple wallets. If successful, the system would expand to allow […]

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Will this week be remembered as “The Great Alt-Coin Meltdown”?

Posted on August 12, 2014

Yesterday, the bottom fell out of the alt-coin market. As bitcoin’s price stumbled a few percent (dropping from the low $580s to the high $560s), a huge range of second-tier cryptocurrencies like litecoin, dogecoin and NXT have been in freefall. In the last 24 hours alone, litecoin has given up 15% of its total value, […]

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Indian bitcoin startup Unocoin raises $250,000 in new fundraising round

Posted on August 11, 2014

Thus far, India has been a tough market for bitcoin to break into. With an estimated 41% of India’s population “unbanked” (and well over 60% in rural areas) and a massive $70 billion remittance market, it’s also a country where bitcoin could have a huge impact. With that in mind, Bangalore-based startup Unocoin has been […]

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Mt. Gox bankruptcy proceedings delayed another six months as filing deadlines extended

Posted on August 11, 2014

Defunct Tokyo-based bitcoin exchange Mt.Gox recently announced that the resolution to its ongoing bankruptcy case will be delayed by at least another six months. In a new update to Mt.Gox’s website, court-appointed trustee Nobuaki Kobayashi said that an order issued last month by the Tokyo District Court 20th Civil Division has pushed the claim-filing period […]

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ChangeTip extends bitcoin tipping system to Tumblr, YouTube and Google+

Posted on August 11, 2014

Popular bitcoin-tipping service ChangeTip is already well known by users of Reddit and Twitter, allowing users to easily send and receive small amounts of BTC for writing clever posts, answering questions or providing good advice. Last week, the service announced it had finished testing an expansion to bring the service to three of the most […]

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Consumer Financial Protection Bureau releases virtual currency warning, will create complaint center

Posted on August 11, 2014

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) issued a new advisory today focused on bitcoin and other digital currencies. The report is similar in content and tone to many consumer-focused warnings published by regulatory bodies across the globe over the last year, with a focus on potential scams, security issues and other well-known cryptocurrency dangers. The […]

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