India’s digital asset investors face more uncertainty amid reports the government is mulling a block on internet protocol (IP) addresses of exchanges and companies that trade cryptocurrencies.
- The claim comes via a report Monday from local magazine Business Today, citing a source with knowledge of the matter, but cannot be verified.
- Previously, India has attempted to block IP addresses of adult sites and some apps, according to Business Today, but with limited success due to the use of VPNs.
- India’s government has said it plans to introduce a bill in the current session of parliament that would ban “private cryptocurrencies,” though its scope is far from clear.
- There have been mixed signals regarding the planned legislation, with one government official stating India would completely ban cryptocurrency use, and another suggesting that will not be the case.
- Minister of Finance and Corporate Affairs Nirmala Sitharaman said earlier this month, “From our side, we are very clear that we are not shutting all options. We will allow certain windows for people to do experiments on the blockchain, bitcoins or cryptocurrency.”
- In February, Indian cryptocurrency exchanges launched the #IndiaWantsBitcoin campaign, an initiative to convince parliament to regulate cryptocurrencies rather than impose an outright ban.
Bureau De Change Operators Urges CBN to Discourage Cryptocurrencies as a Diaspora Remittance Channel
The fast-growing acceptance of cryptocurrencies as a means of payments, money transfers and investment vehicles in Nigeria and other emerging economies has started having a direct impact on diaspora remittance, according to the Association of Bureaux De Change Operators of Nigeria (ABCON).
In its Quarterly Economic Review for the first quarter of 2020, ABCON urged the Central Bank of Nigeria to introduce measures that will counter the advantages of cryptocurrencies as a channel for diaspora remittances.
This, the association said “It is noteworthy that public acceptability for cryptocurrency exchanges are rising which could be quite accountable for the wide drop in diaspora inflows to Nigeria. Insecurity in the country is giving it greater prominence as investors and citizens are finding cryptocurrency a safe haven for their wealth in case of any eventuality.”
Bitcoin transfers surged in 2020, according to ABCON. The association attributed this to the COVID-19 pandemic that exposed cheaper and more efficient digital remittance services.
“Migrants sending money across borders to their families prefer the minimal transaction costs of cryptocurrency exchanges against the exorbitant costs of traditional money transfer companies like Western Union.
“These exchanges override the political complications of official channels.The global reach of cryptocurrencies avoids the inflation risk inherent to official currencies, especially in politically unstable countries reliant on fickle foreign investors.
“Thus, while we commend the efforts of CBN in introducing the package of Five Naira for One Dollar transfer, it can be seen from the analysis above that the challenges exceed just non-payment of foreign currency by the International Money Transfer Operators (IMTOs) and the exchange rate.
“Strategies that satisfy the most sensitive of these advantages of cryptocurrency exchanges must be introduced to redirect flows to the official channel,” it said.
The Central Bank of Nigeria banned banks from facilitating cryptocurrency payments and exchanges in an attempt to discourage people from the largely unregulated fast growing crypto space.
A position the apex bank clarified a week later following the criticism that trailed the decision.
While the apex bank later said Nigerians can trade cryptocurrencies but banks can be tools for such unregulated industry, many Nigerians continue to dump their money on several unproven cryptocurrency projects.
Every Fifth Corporate Network Faced a Cryptomining Malware Attack in 2020
Data acquired by cryptocurrency trading simulator Crypto Parrot indicates that cryptomining malware accounted for the second-largest corporate network attacks at 21% between January 1, 2020, and December 31.
Botnet took the pole position during the same period at 28%. Infostealer ranks third with a share of 16%, followed by mobile at 15%. Banking malware attacks rank fifth with a share of 14%. Ransomware accounted for the least form of attack at 5%.
In terms of regional distribution, cryptominers accounted for 19% of corporate malware attacks in the Americas. Europe, Middle East, and Africa (EMA) region saw cryptomining malware take up 21% of attacks. The Asia-Pacific region accounted for the highest cryptomining malware attacks on corporate networks at 26%.
Surging crypto sector value contributes to rising in cryptomining malware
The report overviews some of the contributing factors for cryptominers to occupy a significant share among corporate malware attacks. According to the research report:
“In 2020, digital assets remained resilient amid the economic meltdown occasioned by the coronavirus pandemic. The value of cryptocurrency began rising from the third quarter of 2020, led by bitcoin in return bolstering the amount of money hackers can rake in. In general, attackers took advantage of the price trend and increasingly spread malware to exploit other people’s computer resources for illegal mining activities.”
Cryptomining hackers are also advancing their act by focusing on anonymous digital assets, like Monero.
In general, they are going for assets that can hide transaction parties and amounts that cannot be linked to previous transactions and are designed for mining on ordinary computers.
Electronics Retailer Newegg now Accepts Dogecoin As Payment
After debuting Bitcoin payments back in 2014, online electronics retailer Newegg added a Dogecoin payment option.
American online electronics retailer Newegg has added Dogecoin (DOGE) as an official payment method amid the ongoing parabolic surge of meme-based cryptocurrency.
Newegg announced Tuesday that the company added the option through the crypto payment platform BitPay.
The firm said that the new feature was introduced in conjunction with Doge Day — a community crypto holiday pushed by DOGE proponents to be celebrated on April 20. According to online reports, Dogecoin advocates apparently hope to see DOGE hit $1 today.
Newegg’s senior brand manager Andrew Choi said that the growing momentum around cryptocurrency is “undeniable.” “The recent surge in Dogecoin value underscores the need to make it easier for customers to make purchases with this popular cryptocurrency,” he noted.
Newegg became one of the first major online shopping stores to accept Bitcoin (BTC) when the company partnered with BitPay back in 2014. Initially debuting the feature in the United States, the firm subsequently expanded the payment option to more than 70 countries.
“We’re committed to making it easy for our customers to shop however works best for them, and that means letting them complete transactions with the payment method that suits them best. To that end, we’re happy to give Dogecoin fans an easy way to shop online for tech,” Choi stated.
Newegg’s move into Dogecoin payments comes amid a catapulting DOGE price rally, with the altcoin gaining more than 480% over the past seven days at the time of writing. On April 19, DOGE market capitalization hit $50 billion for the first time in history, with the token hitting an all-time high of $0.45.
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