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Third Chinese tech giant Baidu to open NFT marketplace

Baidu is airdropping over 20,000 non-fungible tokens (NFTs) of nostalgic Chinese cartoon characters ahead of its upcoming marketplace launch by the end of March. See related article: Tencent calls dibs on metaverse virtual concerts in patent application Fast facts See related article: Alibaba NFT marketplace suspends users for massage gun rapid clicks

ICON surges 60% as South Korea elects new president

ICON surged more than 60% in less than half a day as South Korea’s incoming president Yoon Suk-yeol won election on Thursday morning. See related article: Crypto investors are being wooed in South Korea’s tight presidential election Fast facts In a startup forum last December, Yoon minted his signature as a non-fungible token (NFT) on […]

Binance eyes gaming, e-commerce in upcoming acquisition spree

Binance is eyeing opportunities in non-crypto industries with plans to go on an acquisition spree, the Financial Times reported. See related article: UK regulator may cancel Eqonex’s registration over Binance, Bifinity ties Fast facts Binance founder and CEO Changpeng Zhao told the Financial Times that the crypto exchange is targeting industries such as retail, e-commerce […]

India’s crypto tax will incur losses for government, says WazirX CEO

India’s plans for a 1% tax deducted at source (TDS) on every crypto transaction will result in huge losses for the government, Indian crypto exchange WazirX founder Nischal Shetty said on Wednesday.  See related article: Indians see future in crypto, government sees revenue, FM says Fast facts Shetty argued more revenue is to be expected […]

EU says crypto included in sanctions against Russia and Belarus

The European Union (EU) said on Wednesday that crypto assets fall under the scope of “transferable securities” in its sanctions imposed on Russia and Belarus. See related article: Russian banks turn to China’s UnionPay as Visa, Mastercard pull plug Fast facts The EU is extending its sanctions to Belarus for its involvement in Russia’s invasion […]

Biden pushes the U.S. on CBDCs in sweeping crypto executive order

President Joe Biden on Wednesday urged the federal government to research and develop a digital dollar in an executive order describing broader directives for a coordinated and comprehensive U.S. approach to digital assets. See related article: CBDC tracker shows U.S. falling further behind Fast facts “My Administration places the highest urgency on research and development […]

Russia faces crypto freeze as exchanges toe line on sanctions

Top blockchain and crypto news: Moscow faces crypto winter. DeFi doyen quits Fantom. China mulls metaverse moves.

Alibaba NFT marketplace suspends users for massage gun rapid clicks

Alibaba’s non-fungible token (NFT) marketplace Jingtan issued one-year suspensions to more than 680 accounts for using computer programs and massage guns to make instant purchases as soon as items hit the market. See related article: Ant Group’s NFT arm punishes users for digital collectible resales Fast facts See related article: Why Asia is poised to […]

Fans celebrate NFT artist Alotta Money’s life at Cryptovoxels metaverse 

The crypto and non-fungible token (NFT) community organized a tribute for French NFT artist Alotta Money at the Cryptovoxels metaverse on March 5, two days after he lost his battle with cancer and a day after what would have been his 50th birthday.  See related article: S.Korean presidential hopefuls campaign to avatars in the metaverse […]

Thailand eases crypto tax burden until 2023 to promote industry

Thailand crypto investor tax burdens are being relaxed from April 2022 until the end of 2023, according to the results of a finance ministry cabinet meeting on Tuesday.  See related article: Thailand to regulate cryptocurrency as payment method Fast facts The cabinet approved tax relief measures, including the exemption of a 7% value-added tax (VAT) […]

China busts crypto mining rigs disguised as EV charging ports

Local authorities have seized 1,106 mining rigs from two cities in China’s southeastern province of Guangdong.  See related article: China customs seizes 49 second-hand crypto mining rigs for export Fast facts The Guangdong Provincial Development and Reform Commission announced on Tuesday that it had uncovered a mining farm in Guangzhou disguised as electric vehicle (EV) […]

Indians see future in crypto, government sees revenue, FM says

Indian finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman said on Tuesday the government will discuss its position on cryptocurrencies after completing an ongoing consultation process. See related article: India government, central bank in ‘complete harmony’ on crypto: FM Fast facts Sitharaman said many Indians see a future in cryptocurrencies and the government sees opportunities for revenue in the […]

UK regulator may cancel Eqonex’s registration over Binance, Bifinity ties

The U.K. financial regulator has warned that it can suspend or cancel a firm’s crypto asset registration after noticing Binance’s new payment venture Bifinity’s partnership with Eqonex. See related article: Binance launches fiat-to-crypto service Bifinity Fast facts The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) said on Monday that individuals or entities from Binance may have become beneficial […]

S.Korean presidential hopefuls campaign to avatars in the metaverse

The two leading candidates to become South Korea’s next president entered the metaverse to answer questions from avatars believed to be controlled by voters in their 20s and 30s. See related article: S.Korean presidential candidate issues over 22,000 NFTs Fast facts Ruling Democratic Party candidate Lee Jae-myung and opposing conservative People’s Power Party candidate Yoon […]

Public will boycott crypto firms serving Russians: Ukraine minister

Cryptocurrency exchanges will face public backlash if they continue to operate in Russia, Alex Bornyakov, Ukraine deputy minister of digital transformation, said in an interview with Reuters on Tuesday, reiterating his call for a blanket ban on Russian crypto traders. See related article: Coinbase blocks 25,000 Russian crypto wallet addresses Fast facts “Private business decides […]

How will digital money play into banking’s future?

Blockchain technology is rapidly transforming the finance sector. DBS Bank CEO Piyush Gupta offers an insider’s look at what’s coming next.

CoinDCX chimes in on India’s growing blockchain education needs

CoinDCX has partnered with the Birla Institute of Technology & Science Pilani for crypto research, development and innovation among students, the crypto exchange said in a statement on Tuesday. See related article: India’s blockchain courses ramp up to meet demand for learning Fast facts Over 100 students are expected to be trained in blockchain technology […]

SCMP remakes Hong Kong’s Star Ferry Pier on the metaverse

The South China Morning Post (SCMP) has announced the launch of Hong Kong’s landmark Star Ferry Pier in The Sandbox metaverse, where visitors can experience historic moments through in-game quests. See related article: Covid shuts cinema but Hong Kong gets backup from the metaverse Fast facts The Star Ferry Pier in The Sandbox presents Hong […]

China plans crackdown on illegal fundraising in metaverse, NFTs

China Supreme People’s Procuratorate warned of “severe punishment” for financial crimes such as illegal fundraising and money laundering in a work report released on Tuesday.  See related article: ‘Metaverse’ enters government radar at China’s Two Sessions Fast facts China’s highest procuratorate has taken note of rising financial crimes deemed illegal fundraising, disguised as metaverse, non-fungible […]

Binance launches fiat-to-crypto service Bifinity

Binance has launched its own fiat-to-crypto service provider Bifinity to improve on-ramps and encourage more merchants to take crypto payments. See related article: Israel added to Binance’s list of global regulatory trouble spots Fast facts Bifinity offers over 50 cryptocurrencies and supports major payment methods, including Visa and Mastercard. Crypto business aggregator Coinmap has tracked […]

Why NFT scams are on the rise — and how to stop them

‘Lazy minting’ may seem affordable but heightens the risk of NFT theft, writes Anthem Blanchard of Herasoft. Is storing NFTs on-chain the solution?

NFT startup Immutable valued at $2.5 billion in Temasek-led financing

Australian non-fungible tokens (NFTs) startup Immutable has raised fresh funding in a round led by Singapore’s Temasek, bringing its valuation to US$2.5 billion, the company said in a statement on Monday.  See related article: Jump in NFT demand reflects crypto prices, right? Wrong Fast facts Immutable raised US$200 million in a Series C funding led […]

Coinbase blocks 25,000 Russian crypto wallet addresses

Nasdaq-listed Coinbase has blocked over 25,000 crypto wallet addresses believed to be associated with Russian individuals and entities engaging in illicit activities.  See related article: US asks crypto exchanges to comply with Russian sanctions: report Fast facts Coinbase, the largest U.S. crypto exchange, said it will not impose a blanket ban on all Russian wallet […]

Aid for Ukraine: why a stranded founder turned to DAO and crypto

Stranded away from home, Web 3.0 company Everstake founder Sergey Vasylchuck realized he could still help his war-torn homeland Ukraine by raising funds through a DAO.
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Burned out on crypto? Pro tips on finding calm in a bear market

The crypto market never sleeps, but you should take a breather, advises Ben Armstrong, aka BitBoy Crypto. Here’s how to recharge and fill your cup.

DeFi wizard Cronje’s departure sends TVL sinking 

Decentralized finance (DeFi) total value locked (TVL) is taking a significant dip after pioneer and founder of Yearn Finance Andre Cronje quit crypto with his colleague and senior developer at the Fantom Foundation, Anton Nell, who announced their farewell on Sunday.  See related article: Fantom overtakes Binance Smart Chain in DeFi TVL Fast facts The […]

‘Metaverse’ enters government radar at China’s Two Sessions

Regulation is urgently needed to govern data security and curb speculation as the metaverse industry develops, delegates say.
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S.Korean presidential candidate issues over 22,000 NFTs

The conservative candidate for South Korea’s March 9 presidential election, Yoon Suk-yeol, issued non-fungible tokens (NFTs) featuring images and videos of himself on Monday in an attempt to sway younger voters at the final stages of his campaign.  See related article: Crypto investors are being wooed in South Korea’s tight presidential election Fast facts Yoon […]

PBOC branch chief seeks clarity on digital yuan as legal tender

People’s Bank of China (PBOC) Nanjing branch president Guo Xinming proposed amendments to the administrative law to clarify the digital yuan’s status as legal tender at China’s annual plenary session on Saturday.   See related article: Digital yuan scams emerge across China as central bank readies e-CNY Fast facts See related article: Zhejiang urges its cities […]

Russian banks turn to China’s UnionPay as Visa, Mastercard pull plug

Russian banks may begin issuing credit cards with China’s UnionPay after Visa and Mastercard announced the suspension of their Russian operations due to the invasion of Ukraine, according to media reports citing the Russian central bank. See related article: Four more South Korean crypto exchanges block Russian IPs Fast facts Russian banks are also leaning […]

Singapore prohibits crypto, NFT transactions in sanctions against Russia

The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) has prohibited transactions involving digital assets such as cryptocurrencies and non-fungible tokens (NFTs) in its sanctions against Russian banks and entities, the central bank said in a statement.  See related article: USDT-RUB volume outpaces Bitcoin pair as Russia sanctions pile Fast facts Following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, MAS will […]

Conflict currency: How crypto has become enmeshed in the war in Ukraine

Bitcoin and other cryptos are being used on both sides of the fight, raising ethical issues that cut to the core of decentralization, says AAX’s Ben Caselin

Anchor boosts Terra DeFi amid minor crypto market dip

The crypto market slightly dipped on Friday but the decentralized finance (DeFi) ecosystem in Terra continues to grow with Anchor Protocol leading the way.  See related article: Terra bullish trend continues; rest of crypto top 10 in red Fast facts Bitcoin and Ethereum have fallen by 4.7% and 6.2% respectively in the past 24 hours, […]

Covid shuts cinema but Hong Kong gets backup from the metaverse

Hong Kong-based film production company National Arts Entertainment Group announced it is building a simulation of the Xiqiao Shan filmmaking studio in the metaverse while cinemas remain shut due to local Covid restrictions.  See related article: Who are the biggest players in the metaverse today? Fast facts Xiqiao Shan filmmaking studio is known for its […]

OpenSea blocks Iranian users, citing US sanctions list

OpenSea users based in Iran claim their accounts have been suspended from the U.S.-based non-fungible token (NFT) marketplace, in a growing list of users experiencing restrictions from cryptocurrency-related service providers due to sanctions against the Iranian government, CoinDesk reported.  Fast facts See related article: Binance may join sanctions imposed on Russian targets Many OpenSea users […]

China still has 10% of global Bitcoin transactions, PBOC says

China’s share in global Bitcoin transactions has now dropped to 10% from more than 90%, the People’s Bank of China (PBOC), the central bank, said on Thursday. See related article: Crypto traders in China may serve over 10 years in prison Fast facts Last September, China enforced a blanket ban on crypto transactions and mining. […]

Four more South Korean crypto exchanges block Russian IPs

Upbit, Bithumb, Coinone, and Korbit announced restrictions to block Russian IP addresses on Thursday, bringing the total to five in the nation.  See related article: S.Korean crypto exchange freezes around 20 Russian accounts Fast facts Gopax was the first crypto exchange in South Korea to publicize the restriction, citing efforts to align with Western sanctions […]

The future is decentralized: How Web3 can reshape the world

As the public tires of Big Tech’s privacy abuses, Web3’s premise of decentralization has never looked better, writes Edward Chen of Huobi.

At least 3M Aussies own some form of crypto asset

Australia estimates at least three million Aussies, or 11% of its people, own some form of crypto asset, according to a government-backed report published on Wednesday. See related article: Australia announces biggest overhaul to payments in 25 years — eyes now set on crypto Fast facts Crypto has been on Australia’s radar, with the Senate […]

Can crypto cushion Russia from the pain of sanctions?

War-mongering Russia is finding itself increasingly isolated. What if the rogue state tries to regain its financial footing via cryptocurrency?
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China’s Two Sessions: what to expect for blockchain

Look for progress reports on e-CNY, blockchain technology, new digital infrastructure, and subtle mentions of the international sanctions against Russia.

Ukraine government’s crypto wallets near $40M in donations

Crypto donations raised by the Ukrainian government alone since the Russian invasion topped US$38.8 million on Thursday, as funds flowing into alternative channels bring total contributions to at least US$60 million.  See related article: Ukraine crypto donations top $36M amid Russian invasion Fast facts Aid for Ukraine, a decentralized autonomous organization set up by the […]

S.Korean crypto exchange freezes around 20 Russian accounts

South Korean cryptocurrency exchange Gopax announced on Wednesday that it has frozen and blocked Russian accounts and IP addresses from its platform. See related article: Russian ruble plunges; Ukraine DAO aids civilians Fast facts According to local media, the exchange has blocked around 20 accounts belonging to Russian users. Gopax said its restrictions align with […]

Nomura Holdings plans new digital assets company

Nomura Holdings will restructure its Future Innovation Company into a newly established company to leverage the rise of digital assets, effective April 1.  Fast facts See related article: IBM, Nomura to use blockchain for plastics recycling in new consortium The Japanese financial services giant revealed in a statement its plans to expand its private markets […]

Tencent calls dibs on metaverse virtual concerts in patent application

Chinese tech giant Tencent is applying for a virtual concerts patent, as conglomerates race for the first-mover advantage in the metaverse industry, business tracker Qichacha’s data shows. See related article: 16,000 metaverse trademark applications filed, unlikely to pass in China Fast facts The Shenzhen-based social and gaming giant’s patent application involves a computing approach and […]

NFTs enter ‘mini-bear market’ as buyers drop to three-month low

The number of unique non-fungible token (NFT) buyers in February dropped to 843,000, in what data aggregator CryptoSlam calls a “mini-bear market.” See related article: Wash trading in NFT marketplace LooksRare can inflate prices: analysts Fast facts February’s NFT market had a 7% month-over-month drop in buyers from the all-time high set in January. February […]

Ukraine DAO NFT sells for $6.5M (2,173.6 ETH)

The Ukrainian flag non-fungible token (NFT) auctioned by Ukraine DAO was sold to a pool of donors for  2,173.6 ETH (US$6.534 million) on Wednesday, as proceeds are expected to support Ukrainians affected by the invasion.  See related article: ‘We don’t have time’ for traditional fundraising, crypto is most efficient: Ukraine DAO Fast fact The NFT […]

Bitcoin shores up Ukraine fighters amid Moscow’s money meltdown

Top blockchain and crypto news: Digital currency battling Russian invasion. Ethereum remains NFT projects’ chain of choice. China to lock up crypto traders.

Animoca Brands halts services to Russians: report

Hong Kong-based Animoca Brands has shuttered its services to Russian users saying it is relying on legal advice that equates Western sanctions against Russian entities to the blanket sanctions against North Korea, Bloomberg reported on Wednesday. See related article: Binance may join sanctions imposed on Russian targets Fast facts “The legal advice we’ve been receiving […]

Over half of S.Korea crypto traders are in their 30s and 40s

South Korea’s financial regulator revealed Tuesday that 58% of the country’s 5.58 million cryptocurrency traders are in their 30s and 40s. See related article: S.Korea crypto market growing but needs promotion, not just regulation: BCG Fast facts South Korea’s Financial Intelligence Unit released its first report on the local US$45.8 billion crypto market. South Korea […]

Nvidia hackers threaten to unleash Ethereum mining limiter disabler

The ransomware outfit behind Nvidia’s data breach last week is looking to sell what it claims to be a driver that unlocks Ethereum mining limitations on the chipmaker’s graphic cards. See related article: China customs seizes 49 second-hand crypto mining rigs for export Fast facts The hacker group Lapsus$ allegedly stole 1TB of data from […]

Bitcoin, proof-of-work ban removed from European Union’s MiCA

The European parliament has scrapped wording from proposed legislation that would have banned cryptocurrencies that rely on the proof-of-work (PoW) consensus mechanism, like Bitcoin. See related article: How serious is the threat of Bitcoin mining to the environment? Fast facts The European Parliament member in charge of spearheading the bill known as the Markets in […]

‘We don’t have time’ for traditional fundraising, crypto is most efficient: Ukraine DAO

With limited access to donations through traditional crowdfunding, cryptocurrencies and NFTs offer immediate help, Trippy Labs tells Forkast.

USDT-RUB volume outpaces Bitcoin pair as Russia sanctions pile

The trading volume of the USDT-RUB pair spiked to a 10-month high and outpaced the ruble’s Bitcoin pair as international sanctions against Russia shake local financial stability.  See related article: US asks crypto exchanges to comply with Russian sanctions: report Fast facts The daily trading volume of the BTC-RUB pair surged to over 3 billion […]

How the market is evolving from GameFi to SocialFi — and what comes next

A blockchain is a database that can record all transactions and transfers for the entire world. All users can use public blockchain explorers to verify all data is correct.  Blockchain facilitates transactions of virtual currencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum. Transactions that take place are fast, cheap, tamper-proof and irreversible.  But blockchain technology is not limited […]

Ukrainian Bitcoin ATM producer eyes Asia expansion

Ukrainian Bitcoin ATM developer Intellogate is expanding its services to Asia through a new partnership with two South Korean firms. See related article: Singapore crypto ATMs shut down to comply with central bank rules Fast facts South Korean blockchain service provider Publish and kiosk producer Lincrux signed a memorandum of cooperation with Intellogate to leverage […]

US asks crypto exchanges to comply with Russian sanctions: report

The U.S. is asking crypto exchanges around the world to prevent Russia from skirting sanctions imposed after it invaded Ukraine last week, Bloomberg reported. See related article: Binance may join sanctions imposed on Russian targets Fast facts The Biden administration is concerned that cryptocurrencies can be used to evade heavily regulated traditional financial systems. The […]

Crypto market gained $200B in the last 12 hours

The global cryptocurrency market cap recovered above US$2 trillion since dropping below the mark in mid-February, in a US$200 billion 12-hour run.  See related article: Bitcoin, crypto market tank as Putin declares war on Ukraine Fast facts Bitcoin’s price jumped over US$2,000 in a 10-minute window from 6:30 am HKT Tuesday to mark a ceiling […]

Who are the biggest players in the metaverse today?

The multi-faceted metaverse provides new channels for gaming, socialization, art exhibitions and more. Who’s leading the race and how?

Will Bitcoin and Ethereum make a comeback in 2022?

Russia’s war on Ukraine is battering crypto prices, but what does the more distant future hold for BTC and ETH? Fintech experts offer predictions.

Ukraine crypto donations top $36M amid Russian invasion

Cryptocurrency donations to Ukraine through government and private channels have topped US$36 million as contributions continue to mount throughout the Russian invasion.  See related article: Binance may join sanctions imposed on Russian targets Fast facts The Ukrainian government has received 113 BTC and 2,001 ETH, totaling almost US$10 million, as of press time. Binance has […]

Ethereum reaches 1 million NFT buyers as gas fees sink

The total number of unique non-fungible token (NFT) buyers on the Ethereum blockchain crossed the 1 million customers milestone on Sunday as the network’s gas fees slid to its lowest since August.  See related article: Ethereum price expected to hit $7,609 in 2022: report Fast facts NFT sales on Ethereum increased by 36.06% in the […]

Russian soldiers offered Bitcoin in exchange for white flag

Russian soldiers surrendering to Ukraine will receive 5 million rubles worth of crypto or cash, according to Masha Efrosinina, local TV host and honorary ambassador of the United Nations Population Fund in Ukraine.  See related article: Ukraine’s crypto demand soars; Russian sanctions tighten Fast facts Efrosinina said in an Instagram post that surrendering soldiers of […]

South Korea places $185M bet on the metaverse

South Korea’s Ministry of Science and ICT announced Sunday a KRW 223.7 billion (US$185 million) investment to build the nation’s metaverse ecosystem. See related article: South Korea wants to be the physical home of the metaverse Fast facts The ministry will use its war chest to develop the decentralized creator economy, nurture talents, and support […]

India top court queries crypto legality over $2.6B Bitcoin scam

The Supreme Court of India has sought clarification from the government on the legality of cryptocurrencies in the country in the wake of surging Bitcoin scams, local media reported. See related article: Indian crypto scam investigated Fast facts A bench comprising Justices D Y Chandrachud and Surya Kant asked additional solicitor general (ASG) Aishwarya Bhati […]

Binance may join sanctions imposed on Russian targets

Binance is working to comply with sanctions on Russia imposed by Western governments following the invasion of Ukraine. See related article: Bitcoin donations for Ukraine military surpass $1M Fast facts “We have assembled a dedicated global compliance task force, including world-renowned sanctions experts, and are taking the steps necessary to ensure we take action against […]

Top NFT game Axie Infinity generated $1.3B in revenue last year

Top non-fungible token (NFT) game Axie Infinity generated US$1.3 billion in revenue over the past year, reaching a daily peak of US$17.5 million on Aug. 6, 2021, according to a new report from blockchain analytics firm Nansen. See related article: Axie Infinity becomes first NFT series to break $4B in sales Fast facts Axie Infinity […]

Russia unlikely to turn to crypto if SWIFT sanction is imposed

Measures to detect sanctioned entities’ crypto transactions can come into play, experts say.

Play to live: GameFi drives a Southeast Asian crush on crypto

More people in the region are in thrall to play-to-earn gaming as it adapts to offer real-world uses, says Infinity Ventures Crypto founding partner Brian Lu.

Bitcoin donations for Ukraine military surpass $1M

A charitable fundraising page for the Ukrainian military shut down on Patreon, while donations to the organization’s Bitcoin wallet accelerated to surpass US$1 million on Friday.  See related article: Putin’s attack triples Ukrainian crypto exchange’s trading volume Fast facts Come Back Alive, a Kyiv-based nonprofit organization established in 2014, says funds will be used to […]

BitMEX founders Hayes, Delo fined $10M each, plead guilty to AML violations

BitMEX founders Arthur Hayes and Benjamin Delo pleaded guilty to violating the Bank Secrecy Act’s anti-money-laundering provisions, the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Manhattan said on Thursday. See related article: BitMEX pays US$100M to settle AML, KYC compliance breach charges Fast facts Under the terms of the plea agreement, Hayes and Delo will each pay US$10 […]

Putin’s attack triples Ukrainian crypto exchange’s trading volume

Trading volume in Ukrainian crypto exchange Kuna has more than tripled by Friday since Russia invaded the Eastern European nation, according to CoinGecko data.  See related article: Bitcoin, crypto market tank as Putin declares war on Ukraine Fast facts The 24-hour trading volume at Kuna was at around US$1.5 million on Thursday morning Asia time, […]