The SEC: Unlike ICO Tokens, Bitcoin and Ethereum Can Not Be Securities

sec cryptocurrency

The US Securities and Exchange Commission is been working hard on getting its hands on cryptocurrencies. The organization is coming up with new ways to regulate digital coins in the US, since, according to them, if the cryptocurrency world stays untouched, it will become chaotic and disastrous.

However, in order to regulate such a volatile thing as cryptocurrency, it needs to be classified. First and foremost, the SEC needs to clarify the question of whether digital currencies can be regarded securities.

As for this issue, everything is not as simple as it may seem. The Commissioner Jay Clayton characterized “security” like this:

A token, a digital asset, where I give you my money and you go off and make a venture…, and in return for me giving you my money, you say, ‘you know what, I’m going to give you a return, or you can get a return in the secondary market by selling your token to somebody.”

In other words, the presence of the third party which awaits for some profits from their investments into a digital asset is the main feature that distinguishes a security. Thus, Bitcoin and Ethereum do not mean the requirements of becoming a real security. Tokens released during the ICOs, howerer, are a completely different thing. The only case when ICO coins are not securities is when they are purchased for personal use to buy some intra-platform goods and services.

We would like to remind you that not all the US companies, activities of which are connected with cryptocurrency, agree with the SEC’s decisions.

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Google’s AI Stated Bitcoin Is “A Collapsed Economic Bubble”

If you still do not understand what is happening with the cryptocurrency market, in particular with the prices of all digital coins, Google’s AI gave a kind of interesting answer. By entering the search request “Bitcoin”, you may see the following card which defined Bitcoin as “a collapsed economic bubble”.


Source: Finance Magnates

In a couple of hours the definition was edited, claiming: “Bitcoin is a cryptocurrency, a form of electronic cash. It is a decentralized digital currency without a central bank or single administrator that can be sent from user-to-user on the peer-to-peer bitcoin network without the need for intermediaries.”

The algorithm which aggregates the information displays the useful cards in the sidebar automatically. However, such a sentence clearly shows that the company’s AI system considers the bitcoin market as an economic bubble.

The CEO of Google Sundar Pichai explained that Google’s AI looks at every keyword based on “things like relevance, freshness, popularity and how other people are using it”.

Looking from this point of view, it means that the real reason why such a card displayed is that people downgraded Bitcoin and lost any hope in it.

We remind you

The Main Myths Connected with Bitcoin: A Pyramid, A Bubble or A Valuable Asset?

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Bomb Bitcoin: A New Scammers’ Scheme of Getting Cryptocurrency

Scammers are becoming more and more resourceful in making up new ways of obtaining cryptocurrency, in particular Bitcoin. This scheme is quite simple: the criminal sends an email where it is pointed out that if a victim does not send $20,000 in Bitcoin within a specified time period, then the former denotes a bomb inside the building where the victim’s company is. The culprit also sends the Bitcoin addresses, in the following email, such an address does not exist.

It is just impossible not to respond to such threats due to some moments in history, so the whole offices are now being evacuated as this scam spreads.

Here you can see the full text of the email:

“My man carried a bomb (Hexogen) into the building where your company is located. It is constructed under my direction. It can be hidden anywhere because of its small size, it is not able to damage the supporting building structure, but in the case of its detonation you will get many victims.

My mercenary keeps the building under the control. If he notices any unusual behavior or emergency he will blow up the bomb.

I can withdraw my mercenary if you pay. You pay me 20.000 $ in Bitcoin and the bomb will not explode, but don’t try to cheat -I warrant you that I will withdraw my mercenary only after 3 confirmations in blockchain network.

Here is my Bitcoin address : 1GHKDgQX7hqTM7mMmiiUvgihGMHtvNJqTv

You have to solve problems with the transfer by the end of the workday. If you are late with the money explosive will explode.

This is just a business, if you don’t send me the money and the explosive device detonates, other commercial enterprises will transfer me more money, because this isnt a one-time action.

I wont visit this email. I check my Bitcoin wallet every 35 min and after seeing the money I will order my recruited person to get away.

If the explosive device explodes and the authorities notice this letter:

We are not terrorists and dont assume any responsibility for explosions in other buildings.”

The New York Police Department (NYPD) reacted to such emails and made an official statement on Twitter, stating that such threats are considered to be “not credible”:

The FBI has also tweeted calling for public’s vigilance:

Our editorial board strongly urges not to believe such threats in order not to become a victim of the heinous scams. If you are hesitating if this email is real or not, please, call the police. We remind you

The Most High-Profile Scam Projects of 2018

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Cryptocurrency Prices Today, December 14: Cryptocurrencies Are in the Red Zone Again

crypto prices

Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple, Bitcoin Cash, EOS, Litecoin, Cardano, Stellar, IOTA, Dash, Monero: Cryptocurrency prices

According to the online platform Coingecko, Bitcoin (BTC) lost 3.4% over the past 24 hours. The price at the time of writing is $3298 per coin.

Cryptocurrencies moved to the red zone:

Bitcoin Cash lost 11.17% over the past 24 hours and costs $82 per coin;

Ripple fell by 1.89% and is $0.29 in price;

EOS minus 4.67%, and its cost is $1.88;

Litecoin decreased by 2.35%, and its price is $23;

Cardano lost 4.17%, and its value is $0.028;

Stellar dropped by 6.46% and costs $0.10;

IOTA minus 4.53%, and its cost is $0.24;

Dash lost 4.67%, and its price is $61;

Monero became cheaper by 1.61% and costs $42.

Over the past 24 hours, Ethereum lost 3.95% and continues to decline. The coin exchange rate is $85, according to Coin 360.

The total market capitalization fell to $104 billion. Bitcoin accounts for 55% of the total volume. In monetary terms, this is $57 billion.

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The Most High-Profile Scam Projects of 2018

The unfortunate fact, that the ICO market is dying. According to the Satis Group data, more than 81% of the market is a dead projects. The ingenuity of crypto fraudsters was the cause of investors lack of confidence.

It is worth talking about the most prominent scams, that might have destroyed ICO in 2018 as a transparent manner of investment.

Ifan and PinCoin – $660 million

This two crypto startups took the first place, just because they are running money scams of Vietnam Modern Tech company.

The founders promised 570% annual investment. Which sounded well for investors. Because everybody want a high income.

It was impossible to resist from Modern Tech offers, because the marketing was brilliant. The project gave a bonus per each engaged investor.

Now we can tell that initially it was an obvious scam. But no, the crypto fraudsters planned everything to a small detail. But in the end, word always gets out. The mass action in front of the Modern Tech office was triggered by the fact that cryptocurrency media began to publish information about the dark deeds of the company. During the mass action, investors demanded a refund.

In the end, 32 thousand of investors were cheated and the founders escaped with $660 million. Ironically, Ifan and PinCoin were guilty, but have not been punished for the crime.

PlexCoin – $15 million

The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) undertook the scam situation. That’s why it deserves attention.

Scam projects on the ICO market is like an infection which should be treated at the beginning. The PlexCoin was cured before it caused a significant damage.

The creators of PlexCoin promised a great profit for the investors. This project promised 1300% profit per month. “PlexCoin will be the first cryptocurrency by capitalization, which will eliminate Bitcoin”, said creators. This assumption was a trigger for the SEC.

Dominic Lacroix, the creator of this scam, was charged and entailed to legal responsibility  with “willful distortion provided to investors” by French Financial Markets Regulator (AMF). Following the example set by AMF, the SEC filed a complaint and demanded to suspend the ICO.

During the investigation of the project it was suspended by a lawsuit. Without accepting the restrictions and continuing the sale of fake project tokens, Lacroix was fined $10 000 and deprived of his liberty for a two months.

PlexCoin has earned about $15 million. Ironically, the fraudsters were fined $100 thousand.

BitConnect – presumably, several millions

This is a fine example of fraud field. For two years, it was pulling out the money from gullible investors. BitConnect was launched in 2016 at the peak of hype.

The point of deception was simple: “Invest more – gain even more”. They promised that if they don’t withdraw the funds for 120 days then the profit will be 365%.

Due to the fact that in December 2017 the cost of the BitConnect token was $463, the states of Texas and North Carolina have turned their attention to it. They made the accusation due to unregistered distribution of securities. This reduced the price of the token by 90% and became $ 5.92 per coin.

But, after 2 years of existence, in January, the project disappeared from all the exchanges, and investors were left with nothing,according to the preliminary estimates, they have lost several million dollars. And of course they filed a class action amounting to $700 thousand.

Divyesh Darji managed project from Surat, India and was arrested in the summer of 2018 during the investigation.

Benebit – from about $3 to $4 million

The criminal schemes of Benebit for the ICO market were just perfect, unlike the projects presented above. Everything was at a high level, the project held top places in ratings, there was high activity in social networks, the PR manager did a titanic job. The Benebit activity was brilliant.

But they were revealed by smallest detail. It was because of  photos which they took from the school site, which were noticed by an unknown person. After this all got out, the creators turned off the site, accounts and went into hiding.

During the investigation nobody would think about verification of the authenticity of documents. It turned out that the passport data used by the promoters for work was fake. Another outstanding problem is the rating: how did he get such high marks and who did let that happen?

Conclusion

This is TOP scam projects which should become a lesson to investors. They made a list of “finest scam of 2018” by The Coin Shark, only for the uniqueness of fraud methods.

For example, in ICO Ifan, PinCoin and PlexCoin the investors were attracted with high profit. They were so blind that they did not notice the warnings of the experts.

PlexCoin was the first scam, in which the SEC interfered. As for PinCoin and Ifan they are extraordinary. Since the creators have been found, but not punished.

Benebit startup was unique by the fact that $500 thousand were invested in it under the guise of professional marketing. On the example of this project, we can see the gaps in the system of regulation of IСO.

BitConnect surprised us by the fact, that its financial pyramid was so obvious that it allowed to hide in plain sight. This is a good example of aggressive marketing and the greed of investors in getting money.

In fact, man’s recklessness is the root of the absence of confidence problem to ICO and not such projects. Everyone thinks that this will not happen to himself. But it will, if you are not reasonable and do not check the information about the project in which you intend to invest.

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SEC Obliged AriseBank Creators to Pay Indemnities and Penalties Amounting to $2,7 Million

Jared Rice Sr., the former CEO of AriseBank company, and the former operating officer Stanley Ford, did not admit their guilt in conducting the fraudulent ICO. According to U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), they both agreed to out-of-court settlement.

The U.S. Federal Court obliged them to pay $2.26 million as a compensation for damage, both $184,76 thousand as a fine, in addition to $68 thousand for expenses. As well as, in addition to pay penalties, they could be sentenced to a life ban from leading the projects or participating in the issuance of securities.

Reportedly, Rice did not have access to FDIC insurance and had no partnership with Visa, to offer banking services in Texas. Moreover, Rice has spent investors’ money for his own personal use, while repeatedly talking to mass media about the “non-existent” advantages of AriseBank. In addition, the police believe that Jared Rice Sr. hid from the investors the fact of his previous conviction for fraud and accusations under other charges.  

We want to remind you, that recently SEC have declared their intention to fine social media celebrities who promote scam-ICO in social networks.

SEC Is Going to Fine Social Media Celebrities Who Promote Scam ICOs

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Bitcoin Tops Up the “What Is” Google Searches

As we reported earlier, the searches for Bitcoin have increased quite significantly. We would like to remind you:

The Number of Searches for “Bitcoin” in Google Has Skyrocketed

Now that Google Trends has published new statistics on the most popular searches of the passing year, we can see that “What is Bitcoin?” is the most frequently asked question on Google in the “What is…?” section.

Source: Google Trends

Bitcoin is definitely repeating last year’s success, when it managed to outrun the searches for Donald Trump. However, if last year such an increased interest was due to the stable growth of Bitcoin, now it is happening for the opposite reason.

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