Fake Video of ECB President Lagarde Admitting to Digital Euro Control

A video of European Central Bank (ECB) President Christine Lagarde has been making the rounds on social media, with many believing it to be real. In the video, Lagarde appears to be admitting that a digital euro will be used to control payments in a limited manner. However, it has since been revealed that the video was a fake.

The video was initially shared by the breaking news account Watcher Guru on April 6, and it generated a significant amount of social media chatter. In the video, Lagarde is heard saying that she does not want to rely on an “unfriendly countries currency” or a currency provided by a “private corporate entity like Facebook or like Google.” She goes on to say that she is “personally convinced that we have to move ahead” with the digital euro.

It has since been revealed that the video was taken from a prank video created by a group of individuals who have had similar conversations with other public figures. Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling and former United States President George W. Bush have also fallen victim to similar hoaxes.

The ECB has not yet announced any concrete plans for the development or implementation of a digital euro. However, the idea of a central bank digital currency has been gaining traction in recent years, with many countries exploring the potential benefits and drawbacks of such a system.

A digital euro could potentially provide a number of benefits, including increased financial inclusion, lower transaction costs, and greater security and privacy. However, there are also concerns about the potential risks and challenges associated with such a system, including the possibility of cyber attacks and the need to balance privacy concerns with the need for transparency and accountability.

In light of the recent hoax video, it is important to exercise caution when consuming news and information online. Misinformation and fake news can spread quickly, and it is important to verify the authenticity of sources and information before sharing or acting on it. The ECB has not made any official announcements regarding the use of a digital euro, and any news or rumors should be taken with a grain of salt until confirmed by credible sources.


Tagged : / / / / /

IOSCO to Consult on Crypto Regulation

The International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) has announced that it will launch a consultation on its regulation report for crypto assets in the second quarter of 2023. This consultation will be followed by the publication of the final recommendations by the end of the year.

The dates for the consultation and final report are included in IOSCO’s work program for 2023-24. The Fintech Task Force plan of IOSCO includes two major workflows dedicated to decentralized assets. The first workflow focuses on crypto and digital assets, and the second workflow focuses on decentralized finance (DeFi).

The IOSCO’s report will provide recommendations on how to regulate crypto assets, including digital currencies and tokens. These recommendations will be based on consultations with relevant stakeholders, including regulators, industry players, and investors. The report will also analyze the risks and opportunities of crypto assets and how they fit within the existing regulatory framework.

The consultation on decentralized finance (DeFi) will begin in the third quarter of 2023. The DeFi market has grown significantly in recent years, and regulators are increasingly focusing on its potential risks and challenges. IOSCO’s consultation will seek input on how to regulate DeFi platforms, decentralized exchanges, and other DeFi applications.

The Fintech Task Force plan of IOSCO reflects the increasing importance of digital assets and decentralized finance in the global financial system. IOSCO recognizes the need for regulatory clarity and consistency to ensure investor protection and market integrity. The organization aims to provide a framework that balances innovation and risk management in the fast-evolving digital asset landscape.

The IOSCO’s consultation on crypto regulation and DeFi will be closely watched by the industry and the regulatory community. It will be interesting to see how IOSCO addresses the complex and evolving issues related to digital assets, such as custody, trading, and market manipulation. The consultations will provide an opportunity for stakeholders to share their views and concerns on the regulatory approach to crypto assets and DeFi.

In conclusion, IOSCO’s consultation on crypto assets and DeFi is a significant step towards establishing a coherent and effective regulatory framework for digital assets. The recommendations and guidelines from the organization will help to promote investor confidence and foster innovation in the rapidly evolving digital asset market.


Tagged : / / / / /

Unreleased Version of David Bowie’s “Let’s Dance” Surfaces as NFT

A previously unreleased version of David Bowie’s 1983 hit song “Let’s Dance” has surfaced as part of a limited edition collection of non-fungible tokens (NFTs). Gala Music, a subsidiary of Web3 startup Gala Games, has partnered with music producer Larry Dvoskin and publisher Warner Chappell Music to launch a collection of NFTs featuring Bowie-inspired artwork, which will also grant exclusive access to the unreleased version of “Let’s Dance.”

David Bowie, a legendary singer-songwriter, created an impressive discography that included 27 studio albums, 11 live albums, four soundtracks, and 128 singles during his lifetime. Despite his passing in 2016, Bowie still has at least one unheard track, and Gala Music plans to release it to the world through NFTs.

The NFTs, which will be available for purchase on a “pay-what-you-wish” basis, will grant their owners exclusive access to the unreleased version of “Let’s Dance,” which Dvoskin co-produced with Bowie in 2002. Gala Music plans to launch 3,003 NFTs on April 14, four decades after the original release of the song.

The initial profits from the sales of the NFTs will go towards supporting MusiCares, a charity that offers health and human services to individuals in the music industry. This charitable component adds a meaningful dimension to the release of the NFTs, as Bowie was known for his philanthropy and dedication to social causes.

This is not the first time that the Bowie estate has ventured into blockchain technology. In September 2022, the estate collaborated with OpenSea NFT marketplace to introduce a collection of NFTs called “Bowie on the Blockchain,” which aimed to raise funds for charity. However, the collection faced significant criticism from Bowie’s supporters, who viewed the foray into blockchain as contradictory to the artist’s principles and beliefs.

Gala Games, primarily known for its Web3 gaming initiatives that allow developers to create play-to-earn crypto and NFT games, has expanded its interests to include music and film. The company’s partnership with Dvoskin and Warner Chappell Music represents its latest foray into the music industry, and the exclusive release of an unreleased Bowie track as part of the NFT collection is sure to generate significant interest among Bowie fans and NFT collectors alike.

Overall, the release of an unreleased David Bowie track through NFTs is a fascinating development that highlights the evolving relationship between music and blockchain technology. The charitable component of the release adds a meaningful dimension, reflecting Bowie’s legacy as an artist and humanitarian. As the popularity of NFTs continues to grow, it will be interesting to see how other musicians and artists explore the potential of blockchain technology to release and monetize their work.


Tagged : / / / / / /

Mt. Gox Updates Creditors on Repayment Progress

Mt. Gox, once the largest cryptocurrency exchange, has been embroiled in a lengthy process of repaying its creditors since it was forced to shut down in 2014 after a massive hack that resulted in the loss of 850,000 Bitcoin (BTC). Despite subsequent high-profile crypto thefts, Mt. Gox’s demise remains the greatest cryptocurrency robbery in history.

In 2018, a Japanese court approved a compensation plan, but delays have continued to surround the repayment of funds to those affected. In March 2020, Nobuaki Kobayashi, the rehabilitation trustee for Mt. Gox, announced a new system for the remaining funds to be claimed by creditors through proof of claim via bank statements, transaction records, and identification documents.

The deadline for submitting claims was initially set for October 2020 but was later pushed back to December. After all claims were received, the total amount owed to creditors was nearly $16 billion, more than what was available for repayments.

On April 7, 2023, the company released a statement from Nobuaki Kobayashi, announcing that the deadline for creditors to provide their repayment information had passed. The statement also provided an update on the repayment process, stating that “base repayment, intermediate repayment, and early lump-sum repayments” will be carried out until October 31, 2023, with the possibility of an extension with the permission of the Tokyo District Court.

The statement further indicated that the trustee would carry out the necessary preparations for the repayments, including confirming the selections for repayment and sharing the information with banks, fund transfer providers, cryptocurrency exchanges, or any other custodian involved in the repayment.

However, due to the necessary preparations, the statement also noted that it is expected to take some time before the repayment is commenced. This news may disappoint some creditors who have been waiting for several years for their funds to be returned.

It is worth noting that in February 2023, the Mt. Gox Investment Fund, the largest creditor, decided to go for the option of an early payout in BTC for 90% of what is owed instead of waiting longer for a larger payment. This decision may have been driven by the uncertainty surrounding the repayment process and the desire to secure some form of payment sooner rather than later.

In conclusion, the saga of the Mt. Gox cryptocurrency exchange and the repayment of its creditors continues to drag on, with no clear end in sight. While the recent update provides some information on the repayment process, it is clear that it will take some time before the repayments are actually carried out. In the meantime, creditors will have to remain patient and hope that the process eventually comes to a satisfactory conclusion.


Tagged : / / / / /

South Korean prosecutors trace millions in illicit funds tied to Terra co-founder

South Korean prosecutors are actively tracing illicit funds linked to Terraform Labs co-founder Do Kwon and his associates. A recent investigation identified 414.5 billion won ($314.2 million) in illegal assets, with approximately 91.4 billion won ($69 million) of that amount directly linked to Kwon. Despite the large sum of money tied to Kwon, the South Korean authorities are unable to recover any of the assets due to Kwon’s reported conversion of the funds into Bitcoin using overseas exchanges.

According to a report published by KBS, a local media outlet, Kwon converted most of the illicit funds into Bitcoin instead of investing in physical assets. This has made it difficult for the South Korean authorities to recover the assets since they are not under their jurisdiction. The investigation into Terra’s collapse by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) revealed that Kwon siphoned nearly $100 million worth of Bitcoin from Terra after the collapse.

Further reports based on an SEC interview with former Terraform Labs revealed that Kwon was accused of siphoning $80 million a month before the collapse of the Terra ecosystem. This has led South Korean prosecutors to actively trace properties associated with Terraform Labs executives to recover some of the illicit funds from the Terra debacle.

In their pursuit of justice, South Korean prosecutors have seized homes and other assets to stop former Terra employees from selling assets that might be tied to legal cases. Among the assets seized are residences in Seoul owned by former CEO Shin Hyun-seong and others. The prosecutors also filed foreclosure actions against foreign-registered vehicles, lands in Hwaseong and Gapyeong in Gyeonggi-do, and Taean in South Chungcheong Province.

Terra was a booming crypto ecosystem until its $40 billion collapse in May 2022 due to fraud, with Kwon at the epicenter. Initially thought to be a market-triggered event, the investigation revealed that Terraform Labs had dumped over $450 million of UST on the open market in the three weeks leading up to the depeg of the TerraUSD (UST) stablecoin. Four days after the last sale, UST started collapsing. Despite an arrest warrant from South Korean authorities and an Interpol red notice against his name, Kwon evaded arrest for nearly a year before being caught on March 23 in Montenegro.

In conclusion, the South Korean authorities are actively pursuing justice in the Terra debacle by tracing illicit funds and recovering assets tied to Terraform Labs executives. The investigation revealed the scale of the fraud committed by Do Kwon and Terraform Labs, leading to the collapse of the crypto ecosystem. Although most of the illicit funds have been converted into Bitcoin, the authorities remain vigilant in their efforts to recover the assets and bring those responsible to justice.


Tagged : / / / / /

Crypto Hacks in Q1 2023

In the first quarter of 2023, hackers accessed over $320 million in the crypto industry through a variety of incidents, according to the quarterly report from blockchain security firm CertiK. While this amount is significantly lower than the $1.3 billion and $950 million lost in the first and fourth quarters of 2022 respectively, it is still a substantial sum.

CertiK notes that off-chain events may have played a role in the lower amount of losses seen in Q1 2023. For example, issues with Silvergate Bank and the depegging of USD Coin (USDC) may have had a broader impact on the crypto industry. However, despite these challenges, hackers still managed to exploit vulnerabilities in the system.

Out of the funds stolen within the quarter, over $31 million was lost to 90 exit scams, while more than $222 million was lost in 52 flash loan and oracle manipulation exploits. BNB Chain had the greatest number of incidents for the quarter, with 139 in total. Meanwhile, Ethereum had the most significant loss, with over $221 million lost.

Despite the lower numbers overall, Q1 2023 was still marked by substantial losses. 60% of the funds lost were due to the Euler Finance hack on March 13, where hackers exploited a flash loan to access over $195 million. However, negotiations with the hacker allowed Euler Finance to recover around 90% of the lost funds by April 4.

The trend of recovering funds through negotiations with hackers has become increasingly common in the crypto industry. Lending protocol Sentiment also recovered around $870,000 in April after giving a bounty of $95,000 to those responsible for taking almost a million dollars from the platform.

While it is encouraging to see funds being recovered in this way, it also highlights the need for continued vigilance in the industry. As long as there are vulnerabilities that can be exploited, hackers will continue to find ways to access funds. It is up to those in the industry to remain vigilant and take steps to ensure the safety and security of their platforms and assets.


Tagged : / / / / /

Thai Political Party Proposes Digital Currency Stimulus

The Pheu Thai Party, a major political party in opposition to the current prime minister’s party, has proposed a significant stimulus project using blockchain technology in Thailand. At an April 5 campaign event, the party announced plans to provide all Thai residents over the age of 16 with a stipend of 10,000 Thai baht, or roughly $300, in digital currency. The party’s candidate for prime minister, Srettha Thavisin, touted the initiative as a way to help the local economy, and said that blockchain technology would be used to facilitate the distribution of funds.

The plan is similar to the universal basic income initiative proposed by U.S. presidential candidate Andrew Yang in the 2020 elections, which aimed to provide eligible people in the United States with $1,000 every month. The Pheu Thai Party’s initiative would provide a one-time payment of $300 to roughly 50-60 million Thai residents over the age of 16, which could cost the government between $14 billion and $18 billion.

Thailand’s Securities and Exchange Commission has been considering a ban on staking and lending services, and has established stricter rules for crypto custody providers, despite crypto exchanges and trading generally being permissible in the country. Additionally, the country’s central bank has warned investors about stablecoins pegged to the baht. However, the Pheu Thai Party’s digital currency stimulus project has the potential to boost adoption of cryptocurrencies in Thailand, and could pave the way for further developments in the country’s blockchain industry.

Thailand’s next general election is scheduled for May 14, with all 500 seats in the country’s House of Representatives up for grabs. Current Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha is eligible to hold his position until 2025, following a decision from Thailand’s Constitutional Court regarding his term limit. The Pheu Thai Party’s proposal could have a significant impact on the election, and could influence voters to support the party’s pro-crypto stance.


Tagged : / / / / /

Meta offers lucrative pay packages for metaverse developers

Meta, the parent company of Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp, has been actively pursuing expansion into the metaverse, despite facing challenges and significant losses. The company’s metaverse-building division, Reality Labs, reportedly lost a staggering $13.7 billion in 2022, the largest yearly loss recorded for the division. Despite this setback, Meta has continued to offer lucrative pay packages to its metaverse developers, with compensation ranging from $600,000 to almost $1 million, according to anonymous sources familiar with the matter, as reported by The Wall Street Journal.

The move to attract top talent to work on its virtual reality suite comes at a time when Meta has been facing legal challenges. The company was served with a lawsuit from the Federal Trade Commission against Meta and CEO Mark Zuckerberg, in an attempt to block “its ultimate goal of owning the entire ‘metaverse.'” However, a judge in the United States approved Meta’s acquisition of a virtual reality company at the beginning of February 2023, indicating the company’s commitment to its long-term vision for the metaverse.

Despite concerns raised by U.S. senators in a letter addressed to Zuckerberg urging the Meta CEO not to allow teenagers access to the metaverse platform Horizon Worlds, citing “serious risks” and a “digital space rife with potential harms,” Zuckerberg has remained committed to the company’s vision for the metaverse.

Meta’s recent decision to slowly stop its support for non-fungible tokens (NFTs) on Facebook and Instagram was made to “focus on other ways to support creators, people, and businesses,” according to the head of commerce and financial technologies at Meta in a tweet on March 13. The move may be a signal that the company is exploring other ways to monetize its products and services, in addition to NFTs.

As Meta continues to invest in the development of the metaverse, the company’s ability to attract and retain top talent will be crucial to its success. With salaries ranging from $600,000 to almost $1 million, the company is offering its metaverse developers some of the most competitive compensation packages in the industry. Despite significant losses, Meta’s commitment to its vision for the metaverse remains steadfast, and it will be interesting to see how the company navigates the legal and regulatory challenges that lie ahead.


Tagged : / / / / /

Crypto Lender Celsius to Proceed with Chapter 11 Restructuring Plan

In a bid to restructure and move forward with its operations, Celsius Network has announced that it will proceed with its Chapter 11 plan. The plan is designed to provide the crypto lender with a path to financial stability after facing bankruptcy. Celsius has stated that it will file a disclosure statement on April 12, containing information that will be used by claim holders to vote on the proposed restructuring plan.

The Chapter 11 restructuring plan is aimed at ensuring that the crypto lender can operate in a financially sustainable manner while also addressing the concerns of its creditors. NovaWulf, a company that invests in distressed assets, has sponsored the proposed restructuring plan.

According to a court filing made on March 31 in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York, the disclosure statement aims to provide “adequate information” to claim holders to allow them to vote on the proposed restructuring plan. The statement is expected to contain a detailed analysis of Celsius Network’s operations, finances, and proposed plan for restructuring.

Celsius Network’s bankruptcy has been a significant event in the crypto world, as it was one of the first major crypto lenders to face financial difficulties. The company had attracted significant attention in the crypto community due to its high interest rates on deposits and loans. However, the bankruptcy has raised concerns about the sustainability of the business model and the risks involved in crypto lending.

The Chapter 11 restructuring plan represents a significant step forward for Celsius Network and the crypto lending industry as a whole. If successful, the plan could provide a roadmap for other struggling crypto lenders to follow. However, the success of the plan is far from guaranteed, and there are still significant risks involved in the crypto lending space.

As this is a developing story, more information about Celsius Network’s restructuring plan and its impact on the crypto lending industry is expected to emerge in the coming days and weeks.


Tagged : / / / / /

Twitter Disables Interactions with Substack Links

On April 7, Twitter users on both mobile and web platforms discovered that they were unable to interact with tweets containing links to Substack pages. Many users attempting to like, retweet or reply to posts containing Substack links received an error message indicating that “some actions on this tweet have been disabled by Twitter.” In some cases, users reported that while the interface seemed to register their likes or retweets, these interactions were not being counted or displayed.

At present, it is unclear whether the issue is a bug or an intended feature. However, it is worth noting that on April 6, Twitter appeared to have cut off the ability for Substack users to embed tweets in their posts. According to The Verge, a spokesperson for Substack did not clarify whether they believed the issue involved a change to the Twitter API or a bug. Nonetheless, the inability of Twitter users to interact with tweets containing Substack links seems to have begun around the same time, indicating a likely connection between the two problems.

This development comes in the wake of several recent, mysterious changes to Twitter. For example, the platform recently featured a Doge image in place of Twitter’s bird logo for several days, causing confusion among users. Additionally, the nonprofit media organization National Public Radio (NPR) received a “state media” label, which many people found questionable.

It is also worth noting that Substack announced the launch of “Notes” on April 5, which is a Twitter-like posting application that allows users to share short thoughts and updates. This application can be seen as a potential competitor to Twitter, particularly as Substack is often regarded as a place for expert-level bloggers to share their thoughts with like-minded communities. The crypto community, in particular, has taken advantage of Substack to a relatively large degree.

Given all of these developments, it remains to be seen whether Twitter’s disabling of interactions with Substack links is a temporary bug or a deliberate move to counter competition from Substack. Either way, this issue is likely to be of concern to users who rely on both platforms for networking and community building. As of this writing, there has been no official statement from Twitter or Substack regarding the matter, and it is unclear when a resolution might be forthcoming.


Tagged : / / / / /
Bitcoin (BTC) $ 26,618.13 0.29%
Ethereum (ETH) $ 1,595.40 0.20%
Litecoin (LTC) $ 65.18 1.07%
Bitcoin Cash (BCH) $ 209.34 1.11%