PureFi Introduces SafeTransact to Enhance Web3 Security

The Web3 technology has fundamentally altered the manner in which financial exchanges are carried out by removing the need for middlemen while also enabling decentralized and protected peer-to-peer transactions. Despite this, Web3 comes with its own set of unique security issues and concerns, such as the possibility of hacking attacks to blockchain networks. Web 3 security businesses are continually inventing and creating new methods to safeguard Web 3 transactions in order to overcome the problems that have been outlined above.

SafeTransact is a brand new approach that has been proposed by PureFi, a decentralized finance (DeFi) protocol for cryptocurrency onboarding. Its purpose is to increase the level of security that Web3 transactions have. In order to offer an extra degree of security that is focused on prevention, SafeTransact analyzes blockchain transactions and immediately warns users of any questionable behaviors that it discovers. This solution was developed with the intention of integrating with AMLSafe, which is a multi-crypto wallet that is part of the same ecosystem.

In order to determine the level of risk associated with permitted transactions, the SafeTransact system evaluates a number of characteristics, including the token address, sender address, spender address, and amount. The risk levels associated with token transfer transactions are determined by the system after conducting an analysis of the input data, which includes addresses for “from,” “to,” and “amount.” For the purpose of providing a thorough risk assessment, it examines decentralized exchange addresses, the senders of funds, the tokens that come into and leave the exchange, and the quantities that are transmitted.

Because of the proliferation of DeFi and Web3, security has emerged as one of the most important concerns. The necessity for increased security measures was brought to light by a research that was recently published by Chainalysis. The analysis found that the DeFi sector was the one that saw the most attacks and data breaches in 2022. Audits of Web3 apps are carried out by security organizations in order to discover possible vulnerabilities and hazards. In addition, these businesses offer blockchain-specific security solutions that may assist in the detection and prevention of attacks on blockchain networks.

Enhancing Web3’s level of security has been made easier thanks to the SafeTransact technology. It is possible to reduce the risk of potential hackers and data breaches by conducting an analysis of blockchain transactions and identifying suspicious behaviors. Additionally, the connection with AMLSafe offers an extra layer of protection, making it possible to confirm that all financial dealings are in accordance with the anti-money laundering legislation.

In conclusion, Web3 security businesses play a crucial part in assuring the safety of blockchain-based platforms and apps by providing a range of services. Because of the one-of-a-kind problems and dangers that are related with blockchain-based transactions, security organizations are constantly researching and implementing novel strategies in order to secure Web3 transactions. The incorporation of SafeTransact into the global crypto security arsenal by PureFi is a step in the right direction and exemplifies the efforts that are still being made to make Web3 more secure.


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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.


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Ethereum Projects Launch MEV Blocker to Minimize Invisible Tax

Over 27 prominent Ethereum projects have come together to launch MEV Blocker, a solution that aims to tackle and minimize the amount of value extracted from their users. MEV, or maximally extractable value, is a tax imposed on decentralized finance (DeFi) users on transactions. MEV bots can hijack transactions midway, such as Ether (ETH) trades, nonfungible token (NFT) purchases, and ENS registrations, and inflate prices for the users.

MEV Blocker was jointly developed by CoW Swap, Agnostic Relay, and Beaver Build as a free and censorship-resistant tool to counter this “$1.3 billion dollar problem” persistent across the Ethereum ecosystem. In total, 27 Ethereum projects joined the initiative as launch partners, including Balancer, Gnosis DAO, Shapeshift, and StakeDAO, to name a few.

Explaining the intention behind launching MEV Blocker, Martin Köppelmann, CEO of Gnosis stated: “With the launch of MEV Blocker, users can profit from the backrunning opportunities they create. Today all of that money is taken by the searcher, but why shouldn’t it be split with the people who create the value?”

MEV Blocker can be added as a custom RPC endpoint to a crypto wallet, which, in turn, can protect users from frontrunning and sandwiching when using any Ethereum DApp. According to the official announcement, MEV Blocker sends at least 90% of the profits from winning bids back to users and 10% to validators as a reward — thus giving “power back to Ethereum users.”

This initiative comes at a time when entrepreneurs are attempting to reduce the taxation on users. Despite this, the excitement around the upcoming Shanghai and Capella upgrades resulted in a bull sprint for ETH. On April 5, Ether breached $1,900 for the first time in over seven months.

While MEV Blocker is a step towards mitigating the impact of MEV on DeFi users, it is important to note that the price of ETH dropped sharply following the execution of the Merge on Sept. 15, 2022. This highlights the complexity of the Ethereum ecosystem and the need for ongoing solutions to address the challenges it faces.

In conclusion, the launch of MEV Blocker by 27 Ethereum projects is a welcome development for DeFi users. It has the potential to significantly reduce the impact of MEV and give power back to Ethereum users. However, it is important to continue developing solutions that address the complexities of the Ethereum ecosystem and ensure its continued growth and success.


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Uniswap V3 Protocol License Expires, Allowing Developers to Fork Code

Uniswap, the biggest automated market maker in the decentralized finance (DeFi) space, has opened up its code for developers to fork after the expiration of its Business Source License (BSL) on April 1, according to the protocol’s documentation. The two-year BSL license was created to protect the author’s right to profit from their creations, preventing the code from being used for commercial purposes. The expiration of the BSL license now allows developers to deploy their own decentralized exchange (DEX) using the Uniswap V3 protocol.

Uniswap V3’s new license, the “General Public License,” now applies to the protocol. Developers who want to fork the code will need to use an “Additional Use Grant,” which is a production exemption that is meant to accommodate the needs of both open-source and commercial developers.

Uniswap is widely used by traders, token creators, and liquidity providers in the DeFi space for swapping tokens. Its native token, UNI, is popular among investors looking to gain exposure to the DeFi market. Earlier this month, Uniswap officially went live on the BNB Chain, Binance’s smart contract blockchain, after over 55 million UNI tokenholders voted in favor of a governance proposal by 0x Plasma Labs to deploy the protocol on the BNB Chain. This move allows Uniswap users to access BNB Chain’s ecosystem for trading and swapping tokens, as well as tap into a liquidity pool with BNB Chain’s DeFi developer community.

Uniswap’s decision to make its code available for forking is significant for the DeFi ecosystem, as it allows developers to create new and innovative DEXs that can integrate with the Uniswap V3 protocol. This move is expected to result in a proliferation of DEXs, each with its own unique features, contributing to the growth and maturity of the DeFi space.

While the expiration of the BSL license is a welcome development for developers, it also underscores the need for blockchain projects to carefully consider the licenses they choose to use. The BSL license has been criticized by some in the open-source community for its restrictive nature, and it remains to be seen whether other projects will follow Uniswap’s lead in using the license. Nonetheless, the expiration of the BSL license is a positive development for the Uniswap community, as it opens up new avenues for innovation and growth.


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AllianceBlock and Crunchbase Partner to Enhance Decentralized Business Data

In a move that is set to enhance the availability of decentralized business data, AllianceBlock has partnered with Crunchbase to make its data available to users of the AllianceBlock Data Tunnel. The partnership will enable blockchain businesses and developers to create a range of applications, including default probability models, customer acquisition profiles, and maps of untapped markets, using Crunchbase’s investment and funding information, industry trends, and news data.

The Data Tunnel is a platform that serves both conventional institutions and individuals who typically rely on multiple sources of information to make well-informed decisions about their assets. By allowing users to share, study, and combine information without intermediaries, the Data Tunnel offers a decentralized solution to data sharing and management.

AllianceBlock launched the Data Tunnel in October 2022 as a public marketplace for standardized data. The platform aims to democratize data access and provide a one-stop-shop for data needs across a range of industries.

In 2021, AllianceBlock announced its integration with Avalanche, an up-and-coming “Internet of Finance” protocol. The integration allows users to access AllianceBlock’s DeFi Investment Terminal, peer-to-peer financial services, non-fungible token capabilities, and Know Your Customer solutions directly on Avalanche. The partnership also includes development work with Ava Labs, the developers behind Avalanche.

Furthermore, in the same year, AllianceBlock teamed up with Flare, a fellow blockchain tech entity that seeks to enable blockchains to access real-world data in smart contract execution. The two companies aimed to improve their blockchains with each other’s technology, from cross-chain bridges to decentralized exchanges to oracle networks.

Overall, the partnership between AllianceBlock and Crunchbase will provide a wealth of business data to blockchain businesses and developers, further enhancing the capabilities of decentralized finance solutions. The AllianceBlock Data Tunnel’s public marketplace for standardized data will continue to drive the democratization of data access and sharing, paving the way for new innovations and applications in a range of industries.


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European Crypto Startups See Record VC Investment in 2022

The year 2022 was a tumultuous one for the cryptocurrency industry, with an ongoing bear market and the high-profile collapses of some of its most prominent players, such as Terra and FTX. However, despite these setbacks, venture capital (VC) investors remained steadfast in their support for crypto startups, with a new study released by European investment firm RockawayX revealing that VC investment in European crypto startups reached an all-time high of $5.7 billion in 2022.

This marks a significant increase from the previous year’s investment of $2.2 billion, indicating a strong appetite for innovation and growth in the European crypto space. Notably, decentralized finance startups saw a 120% increase in investments, reaching a total of $1.2 billion in 2022.

Viktor Fischer, the CEO of RockawayX, emphasized that the crypto market is cyclical and that startup funding activity can hold steady even during a market downturn. He pointed to the 2018 winter, when “the total digital asset market cap fell by 80%, but startup funding activity held steady.” Investments made during such periods can lead to tech and usage traction alongside “bull market” price recoveries.

Europe is home to the highest number of crypto startups globally, with 3,977 startups based in the region, according to headquarters location. However, it lags behind the United States in the number of unicorns and startups with over $1 million in funding.

Top global investors in European startups include Animoca Brands, Coinbase, Blockchain Capital, and the Digital Currency Group. In Europe, investment in startups that provide financial services made up more than half (52%) of all investments, with infrastructure and Web3 making up 32% and 16%, respectively.

Compared to 2021, investment in financial service-based startups declined by 19%, while investment in infrastructure grew by 24%. This shift in investment focus reflects a growing interest in the underlying technology and infrastructure of the crypto industry.

Europe’s rising prominence as a crypto-friendly region comes as lawmakers in the European Union (EU) finalize the Markets in Crypto-Assets (MiCA) regulations. These regulations have been delayed twice due to translation issues, as laws passed in the EU must be translated into all 24 official languages of the member states.

If passed, MiCA will provide a regulatory framework for crypto-assets, including stablecoins, and establish requirements for issuers and service providers. The final vote on the regulations is set for April 2023, and their adoption is expected to provide greater clarity and stability for the European crypto industry.

In conclusion, despite the challenges faced by the crypto industry in 2022, European crypto startups continued to attract significant VC investment. As the industry continues to evolve and mature, investment focus is shifting towards infrastructure and Web3, reflecting a growing interest in the underlying technology of the crypto ecosystem. 


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Synthetix Secures $20M Investment from DWF Labs

Synthetix is a tokenized asset issuance platform that allows users to create Synths by locking tokens into a smart contract and minting derivatives that provide exposure to a range of different assets. The platform’s V2 has surpassed $400 million in perpetual swap daily trade volume, and the collaboration with liquidity provider Curve Finance saw a surge in daily fees, increasing the SNX token value by over 100%.

Synthetix has announced a $20 million investment through a new partnership with Web3 investment and quantitative trading firm DWF Labs. DWF Labs has acquired $15 million worth of Synthetix’ native token SNX paid for with USD Coin (USDC) in March 2023, and has committed to purchasing another $5 million worth of SNX tokens once the integration of Synthetix’ services has been completed.

As part of the deal, DWF Labs will be responsible for increasing SNX token liquidity and market making across centralized and decentralized exchanges. Synthetix’ perpetual futures will also be integrated into DWF Labs’ trading business. Holding SNX tokens allows users to create Synths by locking tokens into a smart contract and minting derivatives that provide exposure to a range of different assets. Users can trade Synths using Synthetix’ pooled collateral model, with trades between Synths generating fees for SNX collateral providers.

The creation of on-chain synthetic assets tracks the value of real-world assets, which includes synthetic fiat currencies or commodities like Gold and financial instruments like equity indices. DWF Labs managing partner Andrei Grachev believes the partnership will provide streamlined trading mechanisms in the Decentralized Finance (DeFi) space, allowing for innovative hedging strategies and unique use cases.

Synthetix’ V2 platform has surpassed $400 million in perpetual swap daily trade volume according to data from Dune Analytics. The partnership with liquidity provider Curve Finance saw a surge in daily fees in June 2022, increasing the SNX token value by over 100% during the depths of the prolonged cryptocurrency bear market.

Overall, the investment from DWF Labs is expected to increase Synthetix’ market reach and liquidity, while also providing streamlined trading mechanisms for users in the DeFi space.


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Aave Freezes Stablecoin Trading Amid Price Volatility

Aave, a popular lending protocol in the decentralized finance (DeFi) space, has taken action to mitigate the impact of recent price volatility in the stablecoin market. On March 11, the price of USD Coin (USDC), a commonly used stablecoin, depegged, leading to concerns over the stability of other stablecoins. In response, Aave has temporarily frozen trading of stablecoins and set the loan-to-value (LTV) ratio to zero.

The decision to freeze trading was based on an analysis by Gauntlet Network, a DeFi risk management firm, which recommended a temporary pause of all v2 and v3 markets. Aave’s governance forum noted that setting the LTV ratio to zero would “discount the borrowing power of the asset” without affecting the health factor (HF) of any user position. The HF is a measure of the risk associated with a user’s position on the Aave platform.

The LTV ratio is an important metric for determining the amount of credit that can be secured using crypto as collateral. When a user borrows funds on the Aave platform, they must put up collateral in the form of crypto assets. The LTV ratio is calculated by dividing the amount of credit borrowed by the value of the collateral. A higher LTV ratio means that a user can borrow more funds with less collateral, but it also increases the risk of liquidation if the value of the collateral decreases.

By setting the LTV ratio to zero, Aave has effectively suspended all borrowing against stablecoins. This move is designed to protect users from the risk of liquidation during a period of heightened volatility. However, it also means that users who have already borrowed funds using stablecoins as collateral will need to find alternative sources of collateral or risk having their positions liquidated.

The decision to freeze trading of stablecoins on Aave also highlights the growing importance of stablecoins in the DeFi ecosystem. Stablecoins are designed to maintain a stable value relative to a particular currency or asset, such as the US dollar or gold. They are commonly used as a form of collateral on DeFi platforms, allowing users to borrow and lend funds without being exposed to the volatility of other cryptocurrencies.

However, as the recent depegging of USDC demonstrates, stablecoins are not immune to price volatility. This can create risks for users who rely on stablecoins as collateral, as a sudden drop in value can trigger liquidations and result in the loss of funds. Aave’s decision to freeze trading of stablecoins and set the LTV ratio to zero highlights the need for greater risk management measures in the DeFi ecosystem.

In conclusion, Aave’s decision to freeze stablecoin trading and set the LTV ratio to zero is a response to the recent price volatility in the stablecoin market. The move is designed to protect users from the risk of liquidation during a period of heightened volatility but also means that users who have already borrowed funds using stablecoins as collateral will need to find alternative sources of collateral. This decision underscores the importance of stablecoins in the DeFi ecosystem and the need for effective risk management measures to protect users. Stablecoins play a crucial role in DeFi by providing a stable asset that can be used as collateral for loans and other financial activities. However, as Aave’s decision demonstrates, stablecoins are not immune to price volatility and can create risks for users if their value suddenly drops.

To address these risks, DeFi platforms like Aave need to implement effective risk management measures that can help protect users from the impact of market volatility. This includes setting appropriate LTV ratios that balance the need for collateral with the risk of liquidation, as well as monitoring the market for signs of instability.

In addition to risk management measures, there is also a need for greater transparency and accountability in the DeFi ecosystem. Users need to be able to trust that the platforms they are using are safe and secure, and that their funds are protected from theft or other forms of loss. This requires clear and transparent reporting of platform performance, as well as robust security measures to prevent hacks and other forms of cyber-attacks.

Overall, the recent decision by Aave to freeze stablecoin trading and set the LTV ratio to zero is a reminder of the risks associated with stablecoins in the DeFi ecosystem. While stablecoins can provide a stable asset for collateral, they are not immune to market volatility and can create risks for users. To address these risks, DeFi platforms must implement effective risk management measures and ensure transparency and accountability in their operations. By doing so, they can help build trust and confidence in the DeFi ecosystem and promote its continued growth and development.


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Crypto Industry Continues to Experience Hacks and Exploits: Can Increased Security Measures Help?

The crypto industry has been plagued with hacks, fraud, scams, and rug pulls in the past year, with losses totaling approximately $4 billion in 2022 alone. The largest crypto hack of 2022 was the Axie Infinity’s Ronin blockchain hack, which saw hackers make off with about $625 million worth of Ethereum and USDC. Despite the prevalence of hacks and exploits, some projects have been able to track down attackers and even recover some stolen funds with the help of on-chain sleuths.

Recent news of the successful retrieval of $140 million worth of tokens involved in the Wormhole cross-chain bridge hack is a positive development for the crypto industry. The coordinated effort between Jump Crypto and Oasis, which developed multi-signature wallet software, is a testament to the importance of collaboration and increased security measures. However, it is clear that more needs to be done to prevent such attacks in the future.

One way to increase security measures in the crypto industry is through the implementation of decentralized finance (DeFi) protocols. DeFi protocols offer an alternative to traditional financial systems by using blockchain technology to enable peer-to-peer transactions, without the need for intermediaries such as banks. This creates a more secure and transparent system that is less susceptible to hacks and exploits.

Another potential solution is to increase the use of multi-signature wallets, which require multiple parties to sign off on transactions before they are approved. This would add an additional layer of security and make it more difficult for attackers to gain access to funds.

In conclusion, while the successful retrieval of funds from the Wormhole cross-chain bridge hack is a positive development for the crypto industry, it is clear that increased security measures are needed to prevent future attacks. The implementation of DeFi protocols and multi-signature wallets are just two of the ways in which the industry can become more secure and protect the investments of its users.


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Solana price ‘bear flag’ paints $50 target as Wormhole hack exposes security hole

Solana (SOL) became one of the worst performers among the top cryptocurrencies on Feb. 3 as traders assessed its links with the second-biggest hack to date.

$325M worth of wETH gone

SOL price dropped by 5.50% to below $96.50 as Wormhole, a bridge between Solana and Ethereum blockchains, reportedly lost $325 million worth of Wrapped Ethereum (wETH) due to a technical vulnerability.

Prior to the hack on Wednesday, SOL was trading as high as $112.

In detail, hackers tricked a series of Solana’s smart contracts into signing illicit transactions digitally posing as “guardians,” reported blockchain researcher Kelvin Fichter Wednesday night after the hack. He wrote:

“The attacker made it look like the guardians had signed off on a 120k deposit into Wormhole on Solana, even though they hadn’t. All the attacker needed to do now was to make their “play” money real by withdrawing it back to Ethereum.”

Wormhole said that it would add Ethereum’s native token Ether (ETH) “over the next hours” to back wETH on the Solana network on a 1:1 basis. However, the project did not clarify the source of the funds that would be used to buy ETH tokens.

Bear flag triggered

The selloff in the Solana market across the last 24 hours came closer to triggering a bearish continuation setup that may send the SOL price down by another 50%.

Dubbed “bear flag,” the pattern emerges when the price consolidates sideways/higher after a strong downside move, called “flagpole.” In a perfect world, the price eventually breaks below the consolidation range and falls by as much as the flagpole’s length.

So far, SOL/USD has been forming the same bear flag pattern, as shown in the chart below.

SOL/USD daily price chart featuring bear flag setup. Source: TradingView

The downside target put forth by Solana’s bear flag sits near $50, almost halfway down where the SOL price has been trading on Thursday.

Related: Report crowns Solana for using least energy per transaction, but there’s a catch

Last year, Solana sprinted into the top-ten cryptocurrencies by market cap with SOL rising by more than 11,000% as investors bet on the growth of decentralized finance (DeFi) and nonfungible token (NFT) sectors.

However, entering 2022, the SOL price has fallen sharply, wiping almost half Solana’s market capitalization amid a broader crypto market decline — that also battered Bitcoin (BTC), Ether, and other top-ranking digital assets.

The views and opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cointelegraph.com. Every investment and trading move involves risk, you should conduct your own research when making a decision.