Binance CEO CZ Alerts Users of Phishing Attacks Following Kroll Data Leak

Changpeng Zhao, widely recognized as CZ, the CEO of Binance, has recently brought to light a concerning issue on his Twitter platform. Users of notable cryptocurrency exchanges FTX, BlockFi, and Genesis are reportedly under the threat of new phishing attacks. This surge in malicious activities is believed to be directly linked to the Kroll data leak. Intriguingly, this leak seems to have its roots in a SIM swap conducted on an employee.

In his tweet, CZ stated, “New rounds of phishing attacks already underway for the poor users of FTX, BlockFi, Genesis, as a result of the Kroll data leak, which seems to be a result of a SIM swap on an employee.🤷‍♂️ Learn to protect yourself. Learn about phishing attacks👇” . 

Phishing attacks, which are deceptive maneuvers by malicious entities aiming to extract sensitive information by mimicking trustworthy sources, have been on the rise. This recent wave of attacks emphasizes the critical importance of cybersecurity awareness and the necessity for users to remain alert against potential threats.

In a bid to educate users, CZ shared an article detailing the nature of phishing. Phishing is a cyber attack where attackers pose as reputable entities to deceive individuals into revealing sensitive data. These attacks often use fraudulent emails directing users to deceptive websites. Within the cryptocurrency realm, attackers may spoof genuine sites, altering wallet addresses to misdirect funds.

Key phishing methods include clone phishing, spear phishing, and pharming. Users are advised to be skeptical of unexpected emails, verify content, avoid clicking on email links, and never share private keys. With the irreversible nature of cryptocurrency transactions, vigilance is paramount.

With the cryptocurrency sector’s exponential growth, the security and confidentiality of user data have never been more crucial. Users are encouraged to stay updated and exercise prudence when navigating digital platforms.

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Genesis hires a bankruptcy avoidance specialist

Recent reports say that Genesis Global Capital has hired a restructuring counsel to look into all of the possible outcomes, including but not limited to the possibility of filing for bankruptcy.

According to a report that was published by the New York Times on November 22, it is known that the company has recruited the investment banking firm Moelis & Company to investigate potential courses of action. However, people who are familiar with the situation have emphasized that no financial decisions have been made and that it is still possible for the company to avoid filing for bankruptcy.
It’s interesting to note that Moelis & Company was also one of the companies hired by Voyager Digital after the company temporarily halted withdrawals and deposits on July 1 in order to investigate “alternatives in terms of strategy.”
A few days later, Voyager Digital filed for bankruptcy under Chapter 11 with the Southern District of New York. This was part of a plan to restructure the company so that clients would get their money back.
But a Genesis spokeswoman said not too long ago that the company had no “imminent” plans to file for bankruptcy, even though a November 21 story from Bloomberg said otherwise.

“Genesis maintains a positive and productive dialogue with its creditors,”  the representative said.
People say that Genesis is trying to get anywhere from $500 million to $1 billion from investors to fill a gap caused by “unprecedented market turmoil” and the failure of the cryptocurrency exchange FTX.
According to a report that was published by Bloomberg on November 22, the financially troubled lending company has outstanding loans totaling $2.8 billion on its balance sheet. Approximately thirty percent of the company’s lending has been done to “related parties,” which includes both its parent company, Digital Currency Group, and its affiliate and lending unit, Genesis Global Trading.
In a letter that has been going around lately, the CEO of Digital Currency Group, Barry Silbert, claims that the company owes Genesis Global Capital $575 million, and that payment is due in May 2023.
Since FTX’s exchange was shut down on November 11, all attention has been focused on Genesis, Grayscale Investments, and their parent business, Digital Currency Group. People are afraid that these companies could be the next exchanges to fail because of the spread.
Over the last week, all three corporations have made efforts to allay the concerns of their investors.
In a tweet sent out on November 17, Grayscale Investments aimed to reassure investors by stating that “the safety and security of the holdings underlying Grayscale digital asset products are unaffected.” The tweet was in reference to the withdrawal halt implemented by Genesis Global Trading, and it added that the company’s products are still functioning normally.
In the meantime, Digital Currency Group CEO Barry Silbert’s most recent letter to investors eased investors’ worries by telling them that the company is on track to make $800 million in sales in 2022. 

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Genesis rejects bankruptcy plans

People had the impression that Genesis, a company that lends out cryptocurrencies, intended to file for bankruptcy “imminently” if it was unable to pay a deficit of $1 billion brought on by the collapse of the cryptocurrency exchange FTX. This deficit was caused by the collapse of FTX, which was a company that traded cryptocurrencies. After FTX went bankrupt, Genesis ran into financial difficulties and was unable to meet its obligations, which led to the accumulation of this deficit. This void was brought about as a direct consequence of the collapse of FTX. On the other hand, this is not the case, since the book of Genesis makes it quite clear throughout its text. On November 21, people who are familiar with the matter told Bloomberg that the company had problems collecting money for its lending section and that it advised investors that it would have to file for bankruptcy if the situation did not improve. Additionally, people who are familiar with the matter said that the company warned investors that it would have to file for bankruptcy if the situation did not improve. Furthermore, according to those who are aware with the issue, the business reportedly informed investors that it would have to file for bankruptcy if the situation did not improve.

Genesis has been in “imminently” conversations with its creditors, as suggested by a spokeswoman for the business, and the company does not have any “constructive” intentions to file for bankruptcy, as revealed by the spokeswoman for the company.

After the collapse of FTX on November 16, Genesis said that it has temporarily halted withdrawals of funds from its customers’ accounts. The business said that the temporary halt on withdrawals was necessary due to “unprecedented market turmoil” as the basis for the decision.

The company’s most recent statement, which was issued on November 10 and indicated that it had around 175 million dollars worth of cash locked in an FTX trading account, was made on that day.

According to some reports, the cryptocurrency exchange Binance is said to have been in discussions to perhaps save a lender that is controlled by Digital Currency Group. Binance is claimed to have apparently been in negotiations. According to the sources that were quoted in an article that was published by the Wall Street Journal on November 21, Binance reportedly made the decision not to complete the purchase because doing so would have led to a conflict of interest. This was stated by the sources that were mentioned in the article that was published.

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Grayscale Launches New Crypto Dealer as Genesis Got Incapacitated With 3AC Bankruptcy

Grayscale Investments, one of the largest asset managers in the digital currency ecosystem has launched a new broker-dealer dubbed Grayscale Securities, recent filings with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission show.

GRAYSCALE2.jpg

The firm has to launch this new outfit considering the fact that its sister firm, Genesis is battling a liquidity crisis following its huge exposure to the now bankrupt Three Arrows Capital (3AC). Genesis filed a $1.3 billion claim against 3AC, making some of the firm’s broker-dealer operations somewhat difficult to handle at this time.

 

As a dynamic investment manager, Grayscale requires a steady offshoot to handle its crypto trust products and fronting an in-house dealer will afford it the stability it so craves. Grayscale Securities has registered with the SEC as well as with FINRA and it will henceforth be able to source the required crypto holdings for the parent company’s trusts.

 

The transition from the dependence on Genesis as its broker-dealer to the integration of Grayscale Securities kickstarted on Monday, October 3rd. The transition is even more advised as Genesis has been seeing an exodus of its key officials with its current woes brought on by its exposure to 3AC.

 

Grayscale itself has been in the news lately especially with its recent legal spat with the United SEC over the failed conversion of its Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC) to a full-fledged Bitcoin Exchange Traded Fund (ETF) product. 

 

In its characteristic manner, the SEC rejected the application for the conversion of the product after many delays. With the belief that the SEC’s decision is not in the best interest of its clients and the broader investing community, Grayscale went ahead to onboard Donald Verrilli, a top solicitor during the Obama Administration to lead its lawsuit against the commission.

 

The case is still in its early stages and it comes off as one that may be stretched out like the ongoing SEC vs Ripple lawsuit.

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Crypto Broker Genesis Cuts 20% Workforce, CEO Michael Moro Stepping Down

Genesis, a major institutional digital asset market and a full-service digital currency prime brokerage based in New York, on Wednesday announced several leadership changes amid the company’s efforts to boost the next phase of its growth.

Genesis disclosed that its CEO Michael Moro is stepping down, and the firm is slashing 20% of its 260-person workforce. The cut of 20% equates to the loss of around 52 jobs.

The downsizing exercise comes a few months after Genesis reported huge losses tied to the collapse of Three Arrows Capital (3AC) in June.

Derar Islim, the Chief Operating Officer at Genesis, will take over as interim CEO while the firm searches for a permanent replacement.

The company said that Moro, who joined Genesis in 2015 and took over as CEO the following year, will stay on during the leadership transition.

Besides that, Genesis said it recently hired new executives as chief risk officer, chief compliance officer, and chief technology officer to strengthen its governance further and position the company for the future.

Genesis is a subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, a global enterprise that builds, purchases, and invests in blockchain firms worldwide.

Genesis started its crypto trading desk and lending business in 2013, when Bitcoin was trading just around $80. The New York-based firm is among the largest trading platforms in the crypto market.

Genesis facilitated significantly superior transactions last year when crypto markets were booming. The company’s loan originations soared more than sevenfold to $131 billion, and the firm increased its workforce by 22% to 170 employees. By mid this year, the company’s headcount rose to 260.

The rapid crash in the crypto market this year wiped out companies whose businesses were tied directly to the values of crypto assets. Firms, including Hedge fund Three Arrows Capital (3AC), Voyager Digital, and Celsius Networks, among others, filed for bankruptcy after facing financial challenges triggered by volatile market conditions.

Although Genesis weathered the storm better than other participants in the market, the company suffered massive losses due to its exposure to 3AC.

In July, Genesis filed a $1.2 billion claim against the now insolvent Three Arrows Capital because of breached loans.

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Crypto Broker Genesis Says Lending Business Declined in Q2

Genesis, a global institutional digital asset trading, lending, derivatives, custody and prime brokerage services company, on Wednesday, published its Q2 earning report with some interesting insight into crypto markets.

The report shows that crypto lending output at the company declined while OTC trading rocketed higher.

Genesis said it issued new loans worth $40 billion in the second quarter, a decrease of 9% from the first quarter, as cryptocurrency lending suffered a strong contraction in recent months. The firm stated that most of such loans occurred in April and May, as the entire crypto market capitalization shed more than 40%, from $2.2 trillion to less than $1.3 trillion.

Genesis further said the difficult crypto market conditions contributed to a 66% decline in active loans outstanding to $4.9 billion in the second quarter from $14.6 billion in the first quarter.

The company said its spot desk traded more than $17.2 billion OTC (over-the-counter trading) in the second quarter, an increase of over 51% quarter-over-quarter.

Genesis further mentioned that its derivatives desk traded $26.6 billion in notional value in the same period, a decrease of 4% from the first quarter.

The firm disclosed that Bitcoin contributed 56% of the traded volume, higher than the 48% witnessed in the first quarter. The firm said while its BTC loan weight increased from 28.7% to 30.4% quarter over quarter, its Ether’s weight declined from 16% in the first quarter to 11.4% at the end of June.

Lending Businesses Getting Squeezed

The recent volatility and extreme fall in valuations have tested crypto markets. Genesis had significant exposure to Three Arrows Capital (3AC), a crypto hedge fund firm, which became bankrupt because of excessive leverage. Genesis was fortunate as its parent company, Digital Currency Group, assumed the losses by migrating the assets over to their balance sheet, thus leaving Genesis free and clear of the disaster.

In June, Genesis said its balance sheet was strong. Its lending business continued to meet customer demands, a few days after rival lending firm Celsius Network suspended client withdrawals, citing difficult market conditions.

During that month, many other crypto lending firms such as Voyager Digital, Vauld, Hodlnaut, Zipmex, and Babel Finance froze withdrawals and transfers, citing “extreme” market conditions. Such tragic actions by these firms triggered the recent meltdown in markets and prompted warnings from U.S. regulators over crypto lending platforms.

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How To Add Bitcoin To The Balance Sheet For Corporations, With Saylor & Dorsey

Is your company ready to buy the Bitcoin dip? Saylor and Dorsey will give you the 411 for free.99. The MicroStrategy World annual conference goes live on February 1st. Learn directly from these two titans of the industry, who have definitely been among Bitcoin’s main proponents and promoters over the last few years. 

Michael Saylor has led by example, buying every dip, and is a constant presence in mainstream media. His interviews are more like classes and the attention they get is outstanding. Jack Dorsey, for his part, left Twitter to focus on Bitcoin. Since then, his Block company announced several projects that’ll definitely strengthen the Bitcoin network from every angle.

About the MicroStrategy World conference, the press release promises it’ll be “focused on Enterprise Analytics and Bitcoin for Corporations. World 2022 is 100% virtual, and—for the first time ever—access to all sections of the conference is free of charge.” That’s an unbeatable price.

5 BTC + 300 Free Spins for new players & 15 BTC + 35.000 Free Spins every month, only at mBitcasino. Play Now!

What Will Saylor And Dorsey Talk About?

The conference has two sides, two different events that showcase MicroStrategy’s duality:

“The Enterprise Analytics event will introduce bold new ways to think about analytics and business intelligence, and showcase organizations who’ve used data as a strategic differentiator. The Bitcoin for Corporations event will explore the various benefits of incorporating Bitcoin into corporate initiatives.”

As you might expect, NewsBTC will focus on the second event. It’s important to say that both Dorsey and Saylor’s companies have Bitcoin on their balance sheet. These two put their money where their mouth is, and then some. In any case, what does MicroStrategy World promise?

Get 110 USDT Futures Bonus for FREE!

“An in-depth discussion on Bitcoin between two visionary voices: Jack Dorsey, CEO of Block, Inc., and Michael Saylor, CEO of MicroStrategy Inc. This session will be followed by a discussion on Bitcoin Treasury with Phong Le (President and CFO, MicroStrategy). Bitcoin for Corporations will also feature live interviews with industry experts from Coinbase, Deloitte, Fidelity Digital Assets, Genesis, Jefferies, NYDIG, Paxos, and Silvergate Bank.”

It’s noteworthy that Fidelity Digital Assets recently shocked the world by predicting more countries and probably a Central Bank or two would add Bitcoin to their balance sheet in the next few years. Christine Sandler, Fidelity’s Head of Sales & Marketing, will represent the company at the conference. 

Saylor ’s Recent Bitcoin History

Since MicroStrategy first added Bitcoin to its balance sheet in August 2020, the company has increased the bet every few months. They issued common stock. They sold stocks. They bought, and bought, and bought, and bought. In a recent interview, Saylor explained the strategy and NewsBTC reported:

“Look, our long term strategy is kind of like Harvard University. We’re running a university but we have an endowment. MicroStrategy is selling enterprise software. We generate $100 million in cash flow a year – in a good year – and we are reinvesting that cash in our endowment. Our endowment is 100% bitcoin.”

Saylor adds that MicroStrategy plans to acquire and hold bitcoin as a balance sheet. As for the operations, the company will continue to sell its enterprise software everywhere in the world.”

Related to this, about MicroStrategy’s free conference, Saylor said:

“We have gained a wealth of experience and expertise innovating our treasury strategy and evolving our corporate bitcoin acquisition strategy. And we’re pleased to be in a position to share our knowledge—via this curated event—for corporations looking to pursue similar strategies and bold initiatives.”

Dorsey’s Recent Bitcoin History

For his part, Dorsey’s strategy is much different than Saylor’s. He’s working in infrastructure. He’s fortifying the network’s weak parts. Among other things, Block announced they’re building a decentralized Bitcoin exchange called tbDEX. Released the Lightning Development Kit. And announced they’re working in an open-source ASIC miner

On a personal level, Dorsey and rapper Jay-Z put 500 BTC in a blind trust to promote Bitcoin development in Africa and India. And created the Bitcoin Defense Legal Fund to protect developers from all kinds of lawsuits.

BTCUSD price chart for 01/21/2022 - TradingView

BTC price chart for 01/21/2022 on Gemini | Source: BTC/USD on TradingView.com

The Price Of Bitcoin

Despite Saylor’s and Dorsey’s efforts, Bitcoin is bleeding. On one hand, Proof-Of-Stake proponents straight up lied before U.S. Congress in a hearing about Proof-Of-Work’s environmental risks. On the other, there’s a rumor that Russia is considering banning Bitcoin in some capacity. Both of those situations caused panic in the market, and Bitcoin’s price is currently 40% lower than the ATH of $69K. 

Will Michael Saylor buy the dip? 

Featured Image: screenshot from the conference's website | Charts by TradingView

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Maple Finance Targets Institutional DeFi Market With Permissioned Pool Launch

Key Takeaways

  • Maple Finance has partnered with BlockTower Capital and Genesis to launch a permissioned lending pool.
  • Institutions must complete KYC procedures to participate in the pool.
  • Maple Finance is hoping to become DeFi’s go-to institutional lending platform.




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Maple Finance has launched a new lending pool in partnership with BlockTower Capital and Genesis.

Maple Finance Launches Permissioned DeFi Pool

Maple Finance is taking big steps to onboard institutions into DeFi. 

The Ethereum-based DeFi protocol, which describes itself as a corporate lending platform, announced the launch of a new permissioned pool Monday. It’s the first example of a DeFi lending pool that restricts participation to regulated entities. 


The new pool is the result of a partnership with BlockTower Capital and Genesis, two institutions operating in the digital assets space. BlockTower Capital is a longstanding creditor of Genesis, and it plans to grow the pool to up to $20 million in its first month. Sidney Powell, the CEO and co-founder of Maple Finance, said of the update: 

“Fully permissioned institutional lending enables regulated entities to facilitate on-chain uncollateralized lending for the first time. By building on the public blockchain, Maple gives institutions access to credit markets that operate on a single layer of infrastructure that is transparent, scalable, and secure.” 

Maple launched in May 2021 and has quickly grown as the DeFi space has attracted interest. Of the $105 billion locked in DeFi protocols on Ethereum today, Maple accounts for about $265 million. Maple already hosts two pools overseen by Orthogonal Trading and Maven 11, though this is the first time lenders and borrowers must be whitelisted to participate.



The BlockTower pool is expected to onboard more institutions that have completed the required KYC process in the next few months. Maple is hoping that the pool will pave the way for institutions to take advantage of the transparency and security of DeFi on Ethereum. 

The new pool is the first to enable uncollateralized lending for regulated bodies, though Maple isn’t the only DeFi project to target the institutional market. Aave, one of DeFi’s largest lending protocols, recently launched a permissioned service for institutions called Aave Pro. Maker, meanwhile, saw the French multinational bank Société Générale apply for a $20 million loan in September. As decentralized finance continues to grow, its leading projects will be looking for ways to onboard the next wave of adopters, institutions included. 

Disclosure: At the time of writing, the author of this feature owned ETH and AAVE. They also had exposure to MKR in a cryptocurrency index. 

This news was brought to you by Phemex, our preferred Derivatives Partner.

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Wall Street jinx? Traders weight ‘sell the news’ potential after Bitcoin ETF launch

Wall Street opened its doors for the first Bitcoin (BTC) exchange-traded fund (ETF) on Oct. 19, with the listing of ProShares Bitcoin Strategy (BITO) on the New York Stock Exchange. The fund attracted more than $1 billion in trading volume on its first day, while Bitcoin’s price rallied to a new record high of $67,000.

But the spot gains did not stay for too long, with BTC paring some gains going into the weekend.

Bitcoin’s price corrected by almost 11% from its all-time high to reach levels below $60,000 on Saturday, raising fears about selloffs that typically come after the launch of major crypto derivatives products on Wall Street.

Analysts call for wider BTC correction

Nunya Bizniz, an independent market analyst on Twitter, recalled two of such major events: the listing of the first Bitcoin futures on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME) and the debut of the crypto trading service Coinbase’s stock (COIN) on the Nasdaq stock exchange.

Notable Wall Street listings coincided with spot Bitcoin price tops. Source: TradingView

Notably, CME launched its Bitcoin futures product on Dec. 18, 2017, the date on which Bitcoin rallied toward its then-record high of around $20,000. But the launch also marked the beginning of one of Bitcoin’s longest bear cycles, which bottomed around $3,200 12 months later.

Similarly, the much-celebrated COIN’s debut on Wall Street on April 4, 2021, coincided with Bitcoin rallying to a new all-time high around $65,000 just 10 days later. Nonetheless, the upside move met a bout of strong selloffs, causing BTC to correct to as low as $28,800.

As a result, the recent ProShares Bitcoin ETF left Nunya Bizniz and many other analysts worried about the so-called “buy the rumor, sell the news” correction. For instance, analyst Lark Davis noted that he “wouldn’t be surprised” if Bitcoin’s price crashes following the ProShares ETF launch just like it did after the CME Bitcoin Futures launch.

Also, Dan Morehead, CEO and co-chief investment officer of Pantera Capital, wrote in a newsletter earlier this month that he “might want to take some chips off the table” ahead of the Bitcoin ETF launch.

Impressive debut for Bitcoin ETF

Despite historic bearishness associated with high-profile Wall Street crypto listings, some analysts believe the Bitcoin ETF’s impressive debut will result in limited downside moves in the spot BTC market.

Todd Rosenbluth, head of ETF and mutual fund research at CFRA, told the Financial Times that ProShare’s $1-billion debut is “a sign of the pent-up demand” among traditional finance companies looking to score a slice of the rising crypto industry.

JPMorgan Chase added that retail traders accounted for only 12%–15% of net inflows into BITO on the first two days of trading.

Related: Bitcoin decides fate of $60K as weekly close keeps BTC traders on their toes

That pointed to a significant interest in Bitcoin ETFs among institutions, with cash-marginated Bitcoin futures open interest rising by up to 79% month-to-date and CME basis going from negative in July to above 16% earlier this week.

Bitcoin futures open interest across all exchanges. Source: Bybt

Noelle Acheson, head of market insights at crypto trading firm Genesis, noted that Bitcoin’s perpetual futures rolling basis, a metric to gauge the demand for leverage, ticked up but was still only 13.08% compared to mid-April’s 34.6%.

High leverage remains a common factor across recent spot BTC market corrections. In other words, the neutral funding rates at the moment suggest that the chance of a big pullback is relatively low.

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.