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Not sure which package to choose? Try full access for 4 weeks For 4 weeks receive unlimited Premium digital access to the FT's trusted, award-winning business news Be informed with the essential news and opinion MyFT track the topics most important to you FT Weekend full access to the weekend content Mobile & Tablet Apps download to read on the go Gift Article share up to 10 articles a month with family, friends and colleagues All the essentials plus deeper insights and analysis In-depth analysis on trade, emerging markets, M&A, investing and more ePaper a digital replica of the newspaper Gift Article share up to 20 articles a month with family, friends and colleagues FT Newspaper delivered daily plus unlimited digital access Select Purchase a Premium Digital + Newspaper subscription for $11.77 per week You will be billed $66.30 per month after the trial ends The FT delivered to your home or office Monday to Saturday, including the FT Weekend paper and supplements Continue reading >>

Japanese E-commerce Giant Rakuten Launching Own Cryptocurrency

Japanese E-commerce Giant Rakuten Launching Own Cryptocurrency

Rakuten is Japans largest e-commerce company, with a market capitalization of over $12.5 billion. According to TechChrunch now they are about to introduce their own Rakuten Coin based on blockchain technology. The company CEO and founder Hiroshi Mikitani made the announcement at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona on the 27th of February. He described the coin as a borderless currency however, there were no clear information on the planned launch of the currency. During his speech, Mikitani made it clear that Rakutens main vision is to differentiate itself from their competitors, such as Amazon or eBay. Basically, our concept is to recreate the network of retailers and merchants, he said. We do not want to disconnect [them from their customers] but function as a catalyst. That is our philosophy, how to empower society not just provide more convenience. To fully understand the concept, we must take a look at their loyalty system, called Rakuten Super Points. It was launched in 2003, and it has been a real success since its introduction. Whenever a customer makes a purchase, he is rewarded with points, which could be used as a discount in future purchases. The new idea is to integrate this loyalty program into a blockchain to attract and engage with more customers with the usage of Rakuten coin. The company believes that this can drive more transactions from people internationally, especially since the introduction of such coin could help eliminate some of the exchange rate fees and other issues that may occur when customers buy them with fiat currencies. On the other hand, they might ride the current popularity of the crypto world itself, as the current buzz around digital currencies could be a great unique selling point in general for people interested in cryptocurr Continue reading >>

14 Percent Of Japans Young Male Workforce Invest In Cryptocurrencies, Study Shows

14 Percent Of Japans Young Male Workforce Invest In Cryptocurrencies, Study Shows

14 Percent Of Japans Young Male Workforce Invest In Cryptocurrencies, Study Shows A survey conducted by a Japanese magazine for young businessman reports that 14 percent of surveyed respondents own cryptocurrencies. A survey of male employees in Japan from ages 25-30 shows that 14 percent of the participants own cryptocurrency, according to data published April 3 by Shin R25 , an online magazine for young businessmen. 4,734 men nationwide participated in the Shin R25 Questionnaire Survey on Virtual Currency from January 2018 to March 2018. According to the survey, over a quarter of respondents that owned crypto reported that it was their first investment experience. Of the young Japanese male employees that own crypto, 92 percent said that they entered the crypto markets for investment, 37.4 percent for the time being because it is a trend, and 19.9 percent due to acquaintance and media recommended information. In regards to the value of respondents holdings, 34.5 percent own less than 50,000 yen (about $469) of crypto, while only 10.2 percent owned 1 mln yen or more ($9,360 or more). The majority of respondents, 24.3 percent, bought their crypto assets between October and December 2017, while 15 percent bought them when the price fell sharply in 2018 or later. When asked about their future plans for their cryptocurrency investments, 47.1 percent reported that they would like to actively invest in the future and 35.4 percent that they do not intend to continue investing. Cointelegraph contributor Joseph Young tweeted about the survey results, noting his surprise at what he called a high adoption rate: A study found that 14% of employees in Japan aged 20~25 years already invested in or hold cryptocurrencies like bitcoin and Ethereum. This is a surprisingly high adoption Continue reading >>

Chinese Executive Arrested In Japan For Opening Cryptocurrency Account He Sold To Criminals

Chinese Executive Arrested In Japan For Opening Cryptocurrency Account He Sold To Criminals

Chinese executive arrested in Japan for opening cryptocurrency account he sold to criminals Chinese executive arrested in Japan for opening cryptocurrency account he sold to criminals Lin Xiaolin is believed to have opened six cryptocurrency accounts in total, police said PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 03 April, 2018, 1:48pm UPDATED : Tuesday, 03 April, 2018, 4:58pm Tianjin police size 600 bitcoin mining PCs after surge in power usage Japan police said Tuesday they arrested a Chinese man in Tokyo for allegedly opening a cryptocurrency account that he later sold to a criminal group. Lin Xiaolin, 30, a corporate executive living in Tokyo, was arrested on March 15 for allegedly opening the account at a virtual currency exchange in Tokyo by accessing its server from China using the name of a Vietnamese individual, they said. The police said the account was then immediately sold to the criminal group for about 100,000 yen (US$945). Lin is believed to have opened six cryptocurrency accounts in total, with at least three then used in illicit transactions, they said. Tokyo police said the criminal group illegally transferred cryptocurrency taken from a third party to the account. Investigators suspect he sold accounts and other tools used by criminal groups. According to the police, Lin messaged a Vietnamese acquaintance through Facebook and paid 30,000 yen to purchase the personal details, including the name, birthday and other information of another Vietnamese person. He then used the details to open the cryptocurrency account between July 6 and 9. Lins arrest came after the police arrested four Vietnamese people in February for selling information needed to open a cryptocurrency account to Lin, although prosecutors decided not to indict them last month. Continue reading >>

Japan Suspends Trading On Two Cryptocurrency Exchanges

Japan Suspends Trading On Two Cryptocurrency Exchanges

Japan Suspends Trading on Two Cryptocurrency Exchanges Seven exchanges lack proper internal controls and need to submit plans to improve operations, regulator says As bitcoin has emerged from the underground world of nerds and criminals to become a mainstream investment, the risk of hacks and scandals has also blossomed. What's a government to do? The WSJ's Steven Russolillo travels the world (sort of) to see how regulators are responding to the remarkable rise of cryptocurrencies. Video: Sharon Shi and Crystal Tai Japans financial regulator punished several cryptocurrency exchanges on Thursday, including suspending operations at two of them for a month, part of new restrictions following an apparent $530 million heist at one of its larger crypto platforms, Coincheck Inc. The Financial Services Agency said two of the countrys smaller exchanges, FSHO and Bit Station, had been ordered to halt operations for a month due to a lack of proper procedures to protect customers assets. The agency said the owner of Bit Station had improperly... Copyright 2018 Dow Jones & Company , Inc. All Rights Reserved.

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  • Coincheck Heist Sheds Light On Japans Rush To Create Cryptocurrency Rules

    Coincheck Heist Sheds Light On Japans Rush To Create Cryptocurrency Rules

    Coincheck heist sheds light on Japans rush to create cryptocurrency rules TOKYO (Reuters) After the Mt. Gox cryptocurrency exchange was stung by a half-billion dollar theft in 2014, Japanese regulators swung into action. Their goal was to craft rules that both protected traders and allowed a promising sector to flourish. By last April, thought they had arrived at a set of guidelines that did just that. Japans national system to oversee cryptocurrency trading was the worlds first, rolled out even as policymakers elsewhere grappled with how to deal with the sector. Under the Japanese framework, some exchanges would be allowed to operate even though they hadnt yet won regulatory approval. One of those was Coincheck Inc. Last month, hackers stole about $530 million from the Tokyo-based exchange, a theft rivaling Mt. Goxs as one of the biggest ever for digital currency. The Coincheck heist exposed flaws in Japans system. And for some experts, it raised questions over the countrys dash to regulate the industry a sharp contrast to clampdowns by countries like South Korea and China. Interviews with a dozen government officials, lawmakers and cryptocurrency industry leaders depict a regulator that opted for relatively loose rules to help nurture an industry largely populated by start-ups. Japans Financial Services Agency declined to comment. But proponents of its regulatory approach say the system and the hack were not connected. Its too much to say that the FSA or institutional design was lax because there was one hack, said former information technology vice-minister Mineyuki Fukuda, previously a supporter in parliament of promoting and regulating cryptocurrencies. In the wake of the Mt. Gox bankruptcy, Japan didnt know what to make of bitcoin or even who should be in charge. Continue reading >>

    Japan Toughens Oversight, Penalizes Cryptocurrency Exchanges

    Japan Toughens Oversight, Penalizes Cryptocurrency Exchanges

    Japan Toughens Oversight, Penalizes Cryptocurrency Exchanges In its most sweeping crackdown yet, a Japanese regulator has penalized seven cryptocurrency exchanges, requiring two to halt operations for one month. Japans Financial Services Agency (FSA) announced today, March 8, 2018, that it came down on the exchanges due to their failure to provide proper internal-control systems. All of the exchanges were ordered to step up efforts to improve security and prevent money laundering. Business suspension orders were issued for FSHO and Bit Station , effective today. The FSA said FSHO was not properly monitoring trades and employees at the exchange had not undergone proper training. The FSA also alleged that a senior employee at Bit Station had used customers bitcoin for personal use. The five other exchanges punished were GMO Coin , Tech Bureau , Mister Exchange , Increments and Coincheck . Coincheck was served with its second business improvement order since its security breach earlier this year, when $530 million worth of NEM (XEM) tokens were stolen . In a news conference today, Coincheck also announced that it will begin compensating users who had their cryptocurrency stolen, beginning as soon as next week. The exchange was hacked on January 26, 2018, after a hacker used malware to gain access to an employees computer. All of the 260,000 users impacted by the theft will be paid back in Japanese yen, based on NEM rates at the time of the theft, the Tokyo-based company said. At the root of the problem, the cryptocurrency exchange had been keeping all its NEM in a hot wallet connected to the internet. In contrast, at any one time, U.S.-based exchange Coinbase keeps 98 percent of its funds in a more secure cold wallet. The vice president of the NEM Foundation, Jeff McDonal Continue reading >>

    Yahoo Japan Rolls Out Plans For New Cryptocurrency Exchange - Ico Crowd The Disruptive Investors Magazine

    Yahoo Japan Rolls Out Plans For New Cryptocurrency Exchange - Ico Crowd The Disruptive Investors Magazine

    ICO CROWD The Disruptive Investors Magazine Yahoo Japan rolls out plans for new cryptocurrency exchange Yahoo Japan rolls out plans for new cryptocurrency exchange Yahoo Japan, the Japanese division of global media company Yahoo, has announced its intention to establish a cryptocurrency exchange, according to reports emerging today. The company is preparing to buy a 40% stake in BitARG Exchange Tokyo, in a move that would see Yahoo Japan embark on the initial development stages of a new exchange, to be developed on existing BitARG technology, Nikkei Asian Review reported. Analysts have suggested the move could lead to a wider realignment in the cryptocurrency exchange space in Japan, with the Yahoo model likely to become a significant operator in the space once a market-ready exchange is ultimately launched. Yahoo Japan confirms the plans would see development work begin in earnest, with a proposed timeline to launch of April 2019 at the earliest. The news follows denials earlier in the week from BitARG that a deal had already been signed. The agreement will see Yahoo Japan take a 40% stake in the firm at a cost of around JPY2 billion (US$19 million). The share purchase is to be facilitated through Yahoos forex transaction platform YJFX, and looks set to be concluded next month. BitARG is accredited Japans Financial Services Agency, which would enable Yahoo Japan to get more immediate access to the market without working through the licensing process in their own right. It is expected that Yahoo Japan will also provide further investment for the project in the months to come. Registration is particularly significant in light of the recent warnings issued by the regulator to competing firm Binance, which remains unregulated in Japan. Similarly, this comes at a time of i Continue reading >>

    5 Cryptocurrency Experts To Follow On Social Media

    5 Cryptocurrency Experts To Follow On Social Media

    5 Cryptocurrency Experts To Follow On Social Media Joel Comm is the author of 12 books, a professional speaker, a futurist, and an influencer. With more than 20 years of doing business online, Comm has found success in online marketing, blogging, podcasting, video creation, social media, software development, and mobile applications. As a consultant, he regularly works with small businesses and Fortune 500 companies. Like any industry the cryptocurrency sector is led by a small group of visionaries and pioneers. They're the people who work on the blockchain every day and they're the people with the greatest insight into the latest Bitcoin movement or the effect of some new regulation. Unlike other industries, however, these cryptocurrency leaders are also on social media where they explain what's happening behind the scenes. For anyone investing in cryptocurrencies, they're people to follow. Vitalik Buterin is the creator of Ethereum, the technology that opened the blockchain to any business that wants to create their own cryptocurrency. Don't expect to find any strong investment tips here. Instead, take a look at the way that the developers behind cryptocurrencies think. You might not understand it but you can't help but be impressed by it and reassured that there are some strong minds guiding the development of digital coins. Charlie Lee is the creator of Litecoin, one of the first alternatives to Bitcoin. While Satoshi Nakamoto's cryptocurrency focused on large payments sent across international borders, Litecoin was always meant to be for smaller payments. In line with that approach, Lee's tweets are very down to earth. He talks about changes he wants to see in cryptocurrencies, retweets advice and compares the benefits of Litecoin with other coins. Jed McCaleb was Continue reading >>

    Fintech & Cryptocurrency Trends In Japan

    Fintech & Cryptocurrency Trends In Japan

    To hear about FinTech and cryptocurrencies in Japan, this month Finance Monthly reached out to Kenji Hoki, Deputy Head of FinTech Promotion Support Office at KPMG Japan, who provides advisory services on financial regulations to financial institutions, as well as FinTech start-ups in Japan. What have been the hottest topics in relation to FinTech in Japan in the past 12 months? Not only in Japan, but globally, cryptocurrencies or virtual currencies have been what everyones been talking about recently. In Japan, they have been in the spotlight for a broad range of parties, including retail investors, FinTech start-ups, major financial institutions and authorities like financial regulators and central banks, while attitudes towards cryptocurrencies are varied across the sectors. Retail Investors in Japan who trade cryptocurrencies are rapidly increasing and expanding their investments. FinTech start-ups like a provider of personal financial management and marketplace to trade goods between users are seeking opportunities to incorporate cryptocurrencies as a mean of payment in enhancing their competitiveness. Critical characteristic of the cryptocurrencies, when compared to traditional banks, is bypassing bank accounts to transfer money and the potential to disrupt their position in the financial industry. Large banks in Japan have plans to issue their own digital money, which can keep money flow via the account. In this context, Bank of Japan is conducting joint research with ECB on cryptocurrencies. Japan has taken a very unique approach to emerging cryptocurrencies and has become the first country to give them legal status. The amendment of Payment Services Act (PSA) came into effect in April 2017, introducing new regulations that require virtual currency exchangers to Continue reading >>

    This Is What Happens When Bitcoin Miners Take Over Your Town

    This Is What Happens When Bitcoin Miners Take Over Your Town

    The Friday Cover is POLITICO Magazine's email of the week's best, delivered to your inbox every Friday morning. By signing up you agree to receive email newsletters or alerts from POLITICO. You can unsubscribe at any time. Patrick Cavan Brown for Politico Magazine This Is What Happens When Bitcoin Miners Take Over Your Town Eastern Washington had cheap power and tons of space. Then the suitcases of cash started arriving. EAST WENATCHEE, WashingtonHands on the wheel, eyes squinting against the winter sun, Lauren Miehe eases his Land Rover down the main drag and tells me how he used to spot promising sites to build a bitcoin mine, back in 2013, when he was a freshly arrived techie from Seattle and had just discovered this sleepy rural community. The attraction then, as now, was the Columbia River, which we can glimpse a few blocks to our left. Bitcoin miningthe complex process in which computers solve a complicated math puzzle to win a stack of virtual currencyuses an inordinate amount of electricity, and thanks to five hydroelectric dams that straddle this stretch of the river, about three hours east of Seattle, miners could buy that power more cheaply here than anywhere else in the nation. Long before locals had even heard the words cryptocurrency or blockchain, Miehe and his peers realized that this semi-arid agricultural region known as the Mid-Columbia Basin was the best place to mine bitcoin in Americaand maybe the world. The trick, though, was finding a location where you could put all that cheap power to work. You needed an existing building, because in those days, when bitcoin was trading for just a few dollars, no one could afford to build something new. You needed space for a few hundred high-speed computer servers, and also for the heavy-duty cooling system t Continue reading >>

    New Data On Cryptocurrency Trading Underscores Japan As A Major Hub

    New Data On Cryptocurrency Trading Underscores Japan As A Major Hub

    New Data on Cryptocurrency Trading Underscores Japan as a Major Hub For the first time, Japans financial watchdog has released data about the cryptocurrency trading boom in the country, substantiating its status as a leading bitcoin hub. At least 3.5 million people were trading cryptocurrency on Japans 17 domestic exchanges as of the end of March this year, according to Coindesks translation of statistics from the countrys Financial Services Agency (FSA). The vast majority, 84%, are between the ages of 20 and 40. The regulatory body also revealed that the trading volume of bitcoin in Japan swelled from $22 million in March 2014 to $97 billion in March 2017. Meanwhile, trading on margins, credit and futures of bitcoin as an underlying asset soared from $2 million in 2014 to $543 billion in 2017. The data windfall comes amid Japans push to increase transparency around cryptocurrency trading. The country has remained one of the epicenters of bitcoin and other cryptocurrency trading even as regulators around the region crack down. The trading hype has persisted despite a massive hack of Tokyo-based exchange Coincheck in January that resulted in losses of about 58 billion yen ($533 million) worth of virtual currency, according to Coindesk. Separately Tokyos Mt. Gox, which once handled around 80% of the global bitcoin trades, filed for bankruptcy in 2014, after losing some 850,000 bitcoins, Reuters reported. Continue reading >>

    Coincheck Cybertheft Sparks Japan Cryptocurrency Overhaul

    Coincheck Cybertheft Sparks Japan Cryptocurrency Overhaul

    Coincheck Cybertheft Sparks Japan Cryptocurrency Overhaul The theft of $540 million in NEM coins has Japan rushing to implement oversight of the cryptocurrency industry. Last Friday, Kyodo News reports, Japans Financial Services Agency announced a probe into a further 15 cryptocurrency companies still undergoing government registration in order to assess customer protection systems after Coincheck Inc. reported the largest theft of NEM coins in history. The financial services watchdog swooped down on Coincheck days after a hacking attack saw 580 billion yen ($540 million) worth of NEM coins illicitly siphoned out in a breach of security affecting 260,000 investors almost all of Coinchecks members. On January 26, in the early hours of the morning, 523 million NEM coins worth approximately one dollar each were scammed from Coincheck. It comes as a major blow to Japan, one of the first countries that has sought to implement innovative cryptocurrency regulation since the Mt. Gox bitcoin theft in Japan unfolded in 2014. During this earlier hacking scandal 850,000 bitcoins went missing worth $450,000 and the money has not been recovered since. Enjoying this article? Click here to subscribe for full access. Just $5 a month. While grappling with the unprecedented cryptocurrency heist, the Financial Services Agency is also reeling from having developed a leading regulatory framework that has gone wrong overnight. At a cabinet press conference, Finance Minister Taro Aso vowed to inspect all virtual currency firms undergoing mid-registration by launching an on-site investigation plan. He said it was pivotal to securing customer protection and trust. The inspection will assess whether proper risk management systems are being prioritized while authorities also analyze the contents Continue reading >>

    Cryptocurrency This Week: The $20 Tn Bitcoin Blunder In Japan; Sbis Shilly-shally Moments And More

    Cryptocurrency This Week: The $20 Tn Bitcoin Blunder In Japan; Sbis Shilly-shally Moments And More

    Cryptocurrency This Week: The $20 Tn Bitcoin Blunder In Japan; SBIs Shilly-Shally Moments And More Suprita Anupam February 24, 2018 8 min read Google Pinterest Reddit Pocket Hackernews While Satoshi Nakamoto made the world transition to a whole new P2P electronic payment system with Bitcoin, the Dogecoin, which was started as a joke has gone on to add $2 Bn market cap, thereby adding another layer to the inception. Sufficing to the Solaris effect, the world of cryptocurrency is changing on a faster pace, as some of the West-sanctioned states like Russia, Venezuela and now Iran plan to introduce their own fiat cryptocurrency, perhaps to respond resiliently. In India, while the recent bill Banning of Unregulated Deposit Schemes will curb the uses of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies in deposit schemes happening in different parts of the country, major cryptocurrency exchanges Zebpay, Unocoin and Koinex have expanded their offerings. Meanwhile, SBI, Indias largest public sector bank cautioned users using credit cards as a means to trade cryptocurrencies. However, the news that rocked the Bitcoin world was yet again from Japan, the worlds largest cryptocurrency market. After Japanese exchange Coincheck witnessed the worlds biggest hack ever last month, now Osaka-based Zaif is caught under a $20 Tn Bitcoin glitch. Lets take a look at the recent developments from the world of Cryptocurrency! India: Banning Of Unregulated Deposit Bill Does Not Mandate A Ban On Cryptocurrency While the newly Cabinet-approved bill on Banning of Unregulated Deposit Schemes may directly or indirectly affect some cryptocurrency users in India, the bill does not mandate a ban on cryptocurrencies in India. Speaking to Inc42, the man supervising the bill-draft, R. N. Dubey, Economic Adviser, Departm Continue reading >>

    Salon Is Right To Hijack Your Laptop To Mine Cryptocurrency While You Read It - Business Insider

    Salon Is Right To Hijack Your Laptop To Mine Cryptocurrency While You Read It - Business Insider

    A vertical stack of three evenly spaced horizontal lines. * Copyright 2018 Business Insider Inc. All rights reserved. Registration on or use of this site constitutes acceptance of our Salon is mining cryptocurrency via the web browser of any reader who refuses to turn off their adblocker. The liberal web magazine is being totally upfront about it, and readers have a choice: They can turn their adblockers off. This is a cunning solution to the problem of people who think the web should be free. Salon, the liberal, San Francisco-based web magazine, has a new adblocking policy: Either turn off your adblocker to read the site, or you can keep it and let Salon take the unused computing power on your machine to mine cryptocurrency . The decision is, needless to say, controversial. When I tweeted about it yesterday I was surprised by how many of my followers thought this was a good idea. That got me thinking: This is a good idea. If you use an adblocker, this is your fault You see, Salon isn't a charity. There is no ethical or legal requirement for Salon to provide you with free news and opinions. Websites are in no way "free." Someone has to pay to publish them, to maintain them and keep them on the net. If you've ever tried running even the smallest web site you'll know that the monthly costs of keeping one alive start to mount pretty quickly. Any company that publishes news that you can read for "free" is, in fact, paying thousands of dollars to keep it "free." And yet there is this weird belief, seemingly held by 90% of people on the internet, that there is a requirement for media companies to pay your internet server, and publishing costs, in order to provide you with information free of charge. Most media companies, obviously, pay for these costs by hosting advertisemen Continue reading >>

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