Victory Capital Holdings Inc. unveiled its plans to enter the cryptocurrency market Wednesday. Victory Capital is a diversified global asset management firm with $157.1 billion in assets under management as of April 30.
The firm provides specialized investment strategies to institutions, intermediaries, retirement platforms, and individual investors.
The company said that its wholly-owned investment adviser, Victory Capital Management Inc., “has established exclusive agreements” with Nasdaq and asset manager Hashdex Ltd. in advance of plans to enter the cryptocurrency market, adding:
“Victory Capital will be the exclusive sponsor of private placement funds and other vehicles for U.S. investors, based on the Nasdaq Crypto Index (NCI), a multi-coin crypto index co-developed by Nasdaq and Hashdex.”
Victory Capital plans to launch a private fund for accredited investors that will track the NCI. It will also offer private funds that track the Nasdaq Bitcoin Reference Price Index and the Nasdaq Ethereum Price Index.
Sean Wasserman, vice president and global head of Nasdaq’s Index and Advisor Solutions, commented:
“We have seen a developing maturity in the cryptocurrency ecosystem. Our work with industry partners such as Victory Capital and Hashdex furthers the innovation in the digital asset space.”
eNaira App Grosses 100,000 Downloads Despite Drops in Rating to 2.0 in 24 Hours
Barely 24 hours after the eNaira was launched, the eNaira speed wallet application (eNaira App) recorded over 100,000 downloads despite its rating plummeting to 2.0 on Google store as multiple users complained about glitches while using the eNaira app.
Apart from the Google store, the application can be downloaded from the Apple store, however, the number of downloads from this store is unclear as of now.
Users have to download the ‘speed wallet’ to access the eNaira. Downloading the speed wallet allows users to conduct transactions with speed and ease. It is the digital storage that holds the eNaira and is held and managed on a distributed ledger.
Users however complained of major glitches they experienced while using the app. A user said “Very poor user experience so far. It is a known fact that having an email address wasn’t a mandatory requirement when setting up BVN, now this app wants me to provide my BVN email address.”
Another user said “I am trying to sign up using my bank, but it keeps complaining of my name not matching. Later it says too many attempts have been made for my BVN. You people need to play along with other countries with this crypto matter. At least since I have provided my BVN, the app should be able to access my data automatically. Nigeria has made a great step, but it needs to be improved. Because what is the essence of inputting my BVN and NIN if it can not automatically access my data?”
And another user said “Telling me to contact my bank for email validation despite knowing that banks can make life miserable with things like this. In my opinion, it is best if you provide a place where someone can put preferable email on the app because that’s the beauty of using the app not ‘yeye’ old ways of the banking system.
A very big proportion of the complaints seem to be about email addresses and BVN. In a response to one of the email queries, the CBN said “Before you begin, you need a valid and active email address linked to your BVN profile”. The system fetches your BVN-linked email address based on the KYC info. You also need your correct personal information such as your first name and last name, state of origin, and date of birth associated with your BVN details.”
The eNaira speed merchant wallet which is designed for businesses and allows merchants to offer a convenient way to receive money fared better. The app had 10,000 downloads on the Google Playstore and a 2.8 rating.
CBN Releases Document on Roles of Players Regarding eNaira
Following the launching of eNaira by President Muhammadu Buhari and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), the central bank has now published Regulatory Guidelines on eNaira for all stakeholders.
In the document, which was signed by the Director of Financial Policy and Regulation, Chibuzo Efobi, the CBN provided step-by-step guidelines for all eNaira players, the roles of the Central Bank, Financial Institutions, Merchants, Ministries, Departments and Agencies and Customers.
According to the details of the document, the roles of the CBN regarding the eNaira include:
(1) Managing unresolved eNaira issues and complaints escalated from the Financial Institutions and disputes arising between Financial Institutions.
(2) Minting, issuing, distributing, redeeming and destroying the eNaira.
(3) Determining the technical, regulatory, and operational standards for the eNaira.
(4) Monitoring compliance with applicable regulations.
(5) Issuing directives and reviewing Guidelines on eNaira periodically as may be required.
The roles of Financial Institutions include:
(1) Facilitating eNaira speed wallet onboarding for bank customers (merchants and individuals) including sensitizing them on the need to familiarize themselves with details of their BVN particulars, especially Email addresses.
(2) Integrating the eNaira speed wallet feature into their electronic banking channels.
(3) Managing eNaira across its branches.
(4) Requesting eNaira from CBN for self and on behalf of its customers.
(5) Developing and/or updating reports and internal frameworks to ensure compliance with KYC and AML/CFT requirements.
(6) Receiving and resolving customers’ complaints on eNaira (including a prompt update of customers’ BVN particulars in NIBSS.)
(7) Ensuring that eNaira inquiries and complaints are included in the periodic reports to CBN.
The roles of merchants are:
(1) Providing cashback services for customers.
(2) Providing customers with alternative channels for making transactions using eNaira.
(3) Publicising the option of eNaira payment for transactions at merchant locations.
(4) Protecting their eNaira speed wallet credentials against fraudulent access.
The roles of Ministries, Departments and Agencies are:
(1) Receiving revenue in eNaira.
(2) Making payments in eNaira.
The roles of customers are:
(1) Utilising eNaira as an alternative payment option for legitimate transactions.
(2) Creating eNaira speed wallets and funding them.
(3) Creating eNaira speed wallets and funding them.
(4) Notifying financial institutions in the event of fraud/complaints/disputes.
Blockchain Hackers Have Stolen Over $1 Billion in Q3 2021
Blockchain technology and cryptocurrency hype have gotten a lot of attention in the past years.
According to the data presented by the Atlas VPN team, blockchain hackers have stolen over $1 billion worth of cryptocurrencies in the third quarter of 2021. While blockchain-related hacks and scams continue to rise, the Ethereum ecosystem suffered from the most significant number of hack events and lost the most money during attacks.
The Ethereum ecosystem suffered 20 hack events and lost over $800 million in the third quarter of 2021. One of the most significant hacks was the Poly Network heist, in which the hacker stole $610 million from the cryptocurrency platform.
Next up, cryptocurrency exchanges had 5 hack events in which they lost $114 million. A noteworthy hack happened to a Japanese cryptocurrency exchange, Liquid, as cybercriminals took away about $90 million worth of digital coins.
Other types of hacks and scams have accumulated 28 events, throughout them losing $193 million. Such events include attacks against smaller ecosystems or rug pull scams.
The success of blockchain-related hacks and scams is bringing more and more cybercriminals looking for a quick buck.
A significant increase in blockchain-related hacks happened in 2019 when 133 events were seen. It indicates a 58% percent growth since 2018 when 84 hack events took place.
Through three quarters of 2021, there were more hack events than over the past three years — 146. It signifies a 20% percent increase since last year when 122 hack events and scams were seen.
While comparing more statistics from now and 2020, the Ethereum ecosystem and cryptocurrency exchanges remain the primary targets for hackers.
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