IRS Plans to Ask Every American Worker if They Used Crypto in 2020

IRS or Internal Revenue Service of the United States has fastened its belts to trace every crypto transaction. If you’re an American and filing tax in 2020, watch out. IRS is using sophisticated software and other services to find out which American individual has used crypto.

If you’ve made any transaction in cryptocurrency, you better declare that into the tax filing or the complex methods of the IRS will find out on its own. Recently the IRS issued a draft mentioned that every tax filing individual will have to mandatory make it clear in the documentation.

The first page of the draft has a question that goes like this: “At any time during 2020, did you receive, sell, send, exchange, or otherwise acquire any financial interest in any virtual currency?”

The IRS form 1040 has a question regarding cryptocurrency. It means that the IRS is concerned about cryptocurrency and the taxes related to it. Earlier the IRS was giving hints about considering crypto into the upcoming taxation. But now it is official that everyone has to show the crypto transactions.

The first time when crypto came under the radar of the IRS was when the officials started to consider the stake as income. Everything was normal when cryptocurrencies were using the POW method. But due to its main disadvantage of consuming a lot of energy, some crypto miners have moved to the PoS system.

PoS or Proof of Stake system is being considered as a taxable income by the IRS. That’s why the IRS has started to take a few steps to disclose the crypto income of American investors.  The crypto traders or owners stake tokens and are also rewarded with tokens in return. These tokens are just monetary rewards and not actual returns.

A lot of debate is going on back and forth between the IRS and crypto professional groups to make it understand the model of cryptocurrency. The co-founder of crypto tax software, Cointracker, has spilled the beans on this new draft. He said, there should be specific information on which crypto asset is being taxed by the regulators. There should be new rules and definitions about the crypto taxation laws, added the co-founder of Cointracker. While the head of the tax strategy at Cointracker, Shehan Chandrasekera has advised staying cautious. According to the head of the tax strategy, the taxpayers should stay informed about the income they are receiving

How Much The Development In The Decentralized Finance Space Is Important?

In the upcoming years, the development of Decentralized finance is most likely to be the one to hold the greatest significance for the crypto community.

So, What would the Rapid-Growth of DeFi Do?

It will basically bring up various options, retail users are deficient in the financial system that exists today along with the demand rise, the width of offered services, and the betterment of the protocols. In addition to this, it will also make the institutions capable of moving real-world assets on the blockchain. This would actually generate untold money savings along with an improvement in the efficiencies.

However, this has to be kept in mind that it does not need to be a brutal revolution. Decentralized finance does not require to overthrow the obligatory system. Decentralized finance will most probably set off with conventional finance. Not only that, but it would also force it to be better and the most important thing. The grant for financial insertion of the world’s 1.7 billion unbanked finally.

It is firmly believed that two ecosystems can easily exist side by side. There is always a place for the conventional style along with the growing popularity of the crypto, Bitcoin (BTC) to be more specific along with others. Therefore, there will be a proper requirement for centralized exchanges.

C2C Trading is Getting the Spot

C2C or Customer to Customer trading is a very valuable and actually underused process of making deposits of fiat funds to crypto. But, why so? With this procedure, the retail clients will be capable of depositing funds with stablecoins very securely in a fully decentralized approach.

Hence, it is definitely a good option for many folks. C2C trading is actually showing much growth and also will become the upcoming most needful decree on the ramps for cryptocurrency.

DeFi For Changing Lives

The development that Decentralized finance space is showing has been nothing short of dramatic. For the users around the globe to be capable of accessing loans, earn interest on, and lend their crypto in P2P exchange is actually a reward worth unlimited value which holds the potential to change the lifestyle of every human being on this planet.

For the very first time, a major part of the population will start to sidestep banks and credit or debit directly from their mobiles. They would start living a life they have never imagined.

20 Top Universities Join Oasis Blockchain Network’s Data Program

Blockchain and data science are one of the hottest debate topics at present. Even students around the world are interested in getting knowledge about these topics.

Students from the world’s prestigious universities like Oxford University and Cornell University have joined the blockchain infrastructure provider Bison Trails as the founder member of the Oasis University Program.

The program was recently inaugurated on August 13, and the primary goal is to highlight the oasis program within the student’s society. Students’ interest in these areas of the blockchain network can be seen as a hint for a bright future for blockchain.

What is an oasis network?

Oasis network is a proof-of-stake blockchain that has been designed to help in the tokenization of data. Thus, the process will enable users to maintain and have control over the data that is shared. Therefore, users will get the ability to control how their information is being shared and access their data. 

How will this data program work?

Series of seminars will be conducted, and students will get technical support to understand how to share data responsibly. In addition to this, university groups will also build apps, run validators, and engage in the oasis network

‘s governance.

The program’s main aim will be to foster the growth of a substantive ecosystem that will be focused on building a responsible data economy.

Who are the founder members of this program?

The program’s founder members include blockchain societies from Oxford University, Cambridge University, Berkeley University, and other top universities from all around the globe.

Why are students and universities interested in this program?

As per Dr. Philip Sanders, the head of Frankfurt University thinks that the blockchain benefits added with the data privacy aspect encouraged his group. As per Dr. Philip Sanders, this will help run a node, participate in the use of the network, and practical research and practical education.

Blockchain and data science will be used for different applications worldwide. The step taken by Oasis Blockchain Network’s data program can be seen as a welcome step in the field of blockchain. The way students from top universities join the program can be seen as a milestone achieved by the program.

Let’s see how good this program will perform in the future.

Tel Aviv Stock Exchange Is Ready To Start Blockchain Securities Platform

“Tel Aviv Stock Exchange” (TASE) was inaugurated in Israel in September 1953. The main function of this establishment is playing the main role in the economy of Israel and availing a market infrastructure, focused on economic growth.

It is basically the “home-court” for the investment community of Israel offering investors with a trustworthy and understanding business platform. TASE is also considered as the “home-court” for various companies in Israel looking for raising capital to touch the liquidity and the growth objectives of them.

TASE Launching Blockchain Security Facilities

TASE or the Tel-Aviv Stock Exchange has come up with the idea of establishing its securities lending supply based on blockchain. An announcement was made on the 28th of July by TASE and it said that the institution would offer a crucial function in the capital markets of the nation that is short of a central system for funding securities, at present.

In contrast to the present scenario that is not successful to match the investors’ requirements, the current system based on blockchain will focus each and every activity of security lending at the same spot and activate straight up borrowing among the investors across the primary financial equipment range.

Strived and Trialed

In March 2020, the “Tel Aviv Stock Exchange” came up with a committed environment for testing for the platform which gave allowance to the members to run loan transactions. According to these results, the exchange is making adjustments with its approaches in the lead-in to November. The exchange made prominence in the value that blockchain technologies offered – peer to peer transaction support, smart contract operation along with uplifted transaction security for the unchangeable standard, to be very specific.

TASE also made the statement that this allows the exchange curators and customers to work at inexpensive prices along with a security level stronger than before. The director and the senior VP of TASE, Orly Greenfield stated that Blockchain technology would be making security lending businesses capable of the protection of data and giving complete support to the increment in the transaction counts.

TASE Partnered with Intel and Accenture

At first, the “Tel Aviv Stock Exchange” made this announcement about the building up of its very brand new platform in the month of May 2018 which was erected with the usage of Hyperledger Sawtooth. This specific exchange has made collaboration on the design with partners including companies like Intel, Accenture, and Israeli fintech The Floor.

Justin Sun Offers $1 Million Bounty in Exchange for Twitter Hackers

Justin Sun, one of the highly successful and popular tech entrepreneurs of recent times, known for founding TRON and heading BitTorrent, recently announced a bounty of $1 million for anyone who helps him find his Twitter account. Recently, hundreds of Twitter accounts of celebrities and popular figures were hacked by the anonymous hacker(s). Even though the accounts are retrieved now, it is not yet known as to who is responsible for such a large scale hack. 

Justin Sun says that he would readily give $1 million to the person or the group involved in causing this wide-scale Twitter hack. Justin Sun added that TRON is working closely with Twitter to analyze and resolve the issue and fill in the gaps that caused this incident. He added that the company is highly responsible for all the Twitter accounts it maintains, and are vigilant when it comes to handling and operating the accounts, safely and securely. Sun said that this event clearly highlights the fact that our society needs to incline towards using reliable software and services that are decentralized. 

On July 15, a large portion of Twitter accounts, including that of the famous personalities, business figures, public figures, and many major businesses, including that from the crypto space, were hacked. It is not yet clear as to who is responsible for this incident. Not only the businesses and people from the Crypto space were targeted, but Microsoft’s co-founder Bill Gates and Tesla’s founder Elon Musk’s Twitter accounts were also hacked. The hacks range from various kinds of false partnership announcements to hoax BTC giveaway and more. 

Some other popular names whose Twitter accounts were hacked, included Kanye West, Joe Biden, Mike Bloomberg, Jeff Bezos, and more. An advanced cryptocurrency tracking firm named Whale Alert provided data on how much the hacker(s) were able to collect through the mass Twitter hack that occurred on July 15. The firm revealed that even though it can be undoubtedly termed the hack of the year, the hacker(s) was only able to gather $58,000 so far. It is time and time reiterated by the crypto experts that when dealing in cryptocurrencies, the use of cold wallets or a smartphone is essential. It would ensure comprehensive security for the cryptocurrencies and prevent it from getting easily stolen by the hackers. 

The Justin Sun account was retrieved soon after it was hacked, but his company, TRON’s twitter account, is yet to be recovered. Twitter support said that even though it is not yet clear as to who is responsible for hacking 130 Twitter accounts on July 15, it is clear from the data currently available that it was a well-planned social engineering hack. Twitter has currently started an internal investigation as it was clear that the hack of such a scale is not possible without internal and restricted access. Moreover, additional security features and layers are being worked upon that the company plans to implement soon to protect its users’ security and privacy. 

South Korea Could Issue A Crypto Capital Tax As High As 20%

South Korean Parliament has submitted a bill for crypto profits to be taxed up to 20%.

A private member’s bill is recently put forward to increase the Capital Gain tax on crypto incomes that could be as high as 20%. It will also apply to all kinds of blockchain mining operations and ICOs. Whenever someone sells and gains on cryptocurrencies, they need to file return within two months from the last day of closest half. For non-residents, the cyptocurrency exchange withholds the tax.

Historically, South Korea has been one of the most active crypto trading and mining countries in the world. However, the authorities have been very reluctant to impose taxes or regulate digital assets because this would legitimize the sector as a whole. With the Crypto Transaction Bill’s decision, the nature of cryptocurrencies will foster a growing discussion with true value.

Yang Kyung Sook, a reputed and influential representative of South Korea’s Democratic Party, proposed reclassifying cryptocurrencies and other digital assets as “commodities” instead of ‘currency.’ He specifically explained that classifying the crypto assets as ‘goods’ or ‘commodities,’ instead of currency, is because of investors’ behavior. He believes that due to this, these assets qualify for a capital gain tax.

Addressing the Parliament, Yang said that, so far, no income tax was imposed on the virtual assets, and they were only recognized as a function of money. Recently these are being traded as commodities with actual property value. He added that after considering various aspects, like the recognition of digital assets with commodity value, the government’s attention and taxation of these cryptocurrencies have become very necessary. Soong Tae-Yoon, a Korean Yonsei University Economist, critically warned that taxing the cryptocurrency market may slow down the technology’s emerging capabilities.

However, the Financial Services Commission submitted data according to which, an average of US $1.10 billion make up the average cryptocurrency trade per day. Additionally, an average of 6.33 million US dollars crypto tradings took place in the first five months of 2020.

Many countries, including Japan and the United States, are taxing the cryptocurrencies because the sums being traded are huge, and the revenue can be incredible on taxation.

Therefore, after years of continuous discussions and deliberations about the virtual assets, the South Korean Government is all set to announce the taxing income’s final details to be generated from crypto transactions.

In April of 2020, South Korea’s central bank announced its intention to develop the Central Bank Digital Currency system, like other countries in the world. The bank made a six-man panel, including lawyers, focused on Fintech and professors of commercial laws to launch this process. The committee will be reviewing all the potential regulatory issues impeding this novel project with some additional staffing from the Bank of Korea’s legal policy office.

The committee has started working from early June with a timeline of May 2021. This committee’s work will play a crucial part in the 22-month project timeline set to launch CBDC.

HyperMate – The best hardware wallet of cryptocurrency

Today the craze for bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies is reaching sky high because millions of people are making great use of this electronic currency for numerous purposes. Though this concept of using digital currency came into existence in the year 2009, it gained high popularity in recent years. By seeing the demand for cryptocurrency, experts are coming up with many new options in the digital currency world to make it convenient for the people to use this electronic currency.

HyperMate is one of the best hardware wallets invented by experts to make cryptocurrency usage more convenient. Developed by HyperPay, a multi-ecological digital wallet, HyperMate adds bitcoin cash and has Litecoin Multi-Sig Support. BTC, ETH, BCH, LTC, HC, and ERC20 are some of the supported hardware multi-signature currencies of this hardware wallet (HyperMate).

How to operate HyperMate

One can connect HyperMate to a mobile phone via Bluetooth, which has to be conducted in HyperPay App. This app is the famous payment gateway of MENA and plays a major role in offering payment processing solutions for businesses of all sizes. This is proven as one of the best hardware wallets that we would ever need. The main concept of this app is to help both users and service providers to access, exchange, and make fund transaction. 

HyperPay App supports both Android and iOS. The best thing about this HyperPay App is it helps in conducting HyperMate without any problems like network risks and many others. To generate a payment in the HyperMate app, one needs to pair a mobile device with HyperMate and select the coin type that you want to spend and follow the instructions accordingly.

Why HyperMate added Litecoin multi-sig function support

HyperMate, one of the best and highly secure crypto hardware wallets, is looking to realize multi-signature within the cryptocurrency world. There are two different types of multi-signatures available in the cryptocurrency industry, namely, non-hardware multi-signature and hardware multi-signature, where the private key security is not guaranteed, which may cause danger.

Though multi-signature helps users to use the private key, it may get hacked. Though the cryptocurrency concept came into existence long back yet, there is no proper security yet. So to solve such problems and make it safe and secure for the customers to use their wallets without any hacking problem, HyperMate added Litecoin multi-signature function support to assist and ensure safety.

Process of using multi-sig function wallet

Multi-sig is a digital signature scheme that is highly used by cryptocurrency users, where it allows a group of users to sign a single document. It adds the best security for cryptocurrency transactions. The process of using a multi-sig wallet is very simple on HyperMate, where one needs to create a multi-sig wallet by setting a number of members. Once the wallet is created, it has to be generated and wait for other members to join. Once all the members are added system automatically generates a multi-sig address and sends it to all the members. To make transactions, simply connect to HyperMate, enter pin code, and when the signatures are fulfilled by all the members, the system will automatically pack the transaction and send it.

The most malicious ransomware demanding crypto to watch out for

Cyberattacks have become very common these days. Not only big companies but even individuals are at risk as attackers demand money for not exposing private data. You will be surprised to know that several companies ended up paying millions of dollars in the last year to have their important files secured after it was taken away by malware attackers. Those who use various digital payment options need to be more careful while using any platform as these fraudsters are technically smart and able to hack a device through which they can move to the secured data of the users and play with it as they wish.

During this coronavirus pandemic, things are taking a new turn as most companies are not in a position to pay the ransom. In this situation, attackers are getting smart and demanding payment in bitcoins and other cryptocurrencies to avoid detection. As many individuals have started working from home, it has also become difficult for attackers to get hold of big company data. For the authorities also it is not that easy to nab such scammers as in most cases they are not local. They operate from other states or countries and have various ways to penetrate the system, and hence for experts also it proves tough to keep them at bay. 

Let us check some of the most notorious ransomware demanding cryptocurrency payments in recent times.

WastedLocker ransomware

This was created by the infamous Evil Corp that has been active in cybercrimes for a decade. They are now targeting database services and cloud services by disrupting backup applications in the system. In this situation, the victims will not be able to recover their files even while having a backup in the system. The only way to prevent this situation is to have an offline backup of your critical data. The team was earlier involved in various large crimes involving major financial institutions.

DoppelPaymer ransomware

They target the important files and encrypt them in your system. Later they demand ransom to decrypt the files. This was developed by INDRIK SPIDER, and they were recently involved in an attack against the City of Torrance in the United States. They managed to steal about 200 GB of data and demanded 100 bitcoin in ransom. Apart from that, they had also attacked the information technology system of Alabama and asked for $300000 bitcoin. The city’s email system was brought down due to this attack.

Dridex ransomware

This malware is notorious for stealing bank credentials of victims, and they usually target the Microsoft Word macros or the entire Windows system. The problem with this malware is that it can be easily executed through email attacks, and many people become vulnerable to such attacks during the pandemic as they work from home and use personal computers that are not secured with firewalls and other safety measures.

Ryuk malware

This is well known for targeting hospitals and healthcare centers. They use spam emails to target computers and steal important data. Many attackers have successfully used this malware to extract bitcoins as ransom from various hospitals.

These are some of the most notorious malware programs that are demanding bitcoins and other cryptocurrencies as ransom in recent months. The trend is likely to continue as attackers find it easy to handle bitcoins and other cryptocurrencies. They cannot be traced in this way, and this offers them complete protection in the long run. However, in recent weeks, it is noticed that many victims are not paying the ransom, and this has forced the attackers to auction such data in the market.

U.S. Supreme Court Limits SEC’s Ability to Fine Crypto-Based Scammers

In a historic ruling by the United States Supreme Court recently, it has limited the powers governed by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission to impose punitive fines on the private cryptocurrency and blockchain-related firms. The historical intervention by the U.S. Supreme Court is unprecedented and has come as a breather in the blockchain sector. While the U.S. Supreme Court has not curtailed the ability to impose punitive fines completely, it has primarily created a threshold on the fines that can be imposed.

The setting for the ruling came from the case of Liu vs. SEC. In the Supreme Court’s ruling, it mentioned that the Securities and Exchange Commission could not impose a punitive fine that exceeds the profits that these companies make from any sort of illicit and illegal activities. The appeal was made in the Supreme Court by a couple based in California, namely Xin Wang and Charles Liu. The couple has been fighting a legal battle with the SEC since 2016. Initially, the SEC sued the California-based couple in the Federal Court. Still, eventually, the case was further pushed down to lower courts to sort out other legal issues associated with the case legally.

As per the case proceedings files, the SEC order Liu and Wang to cough out nearly $27 million in punitive fines for illegally and unethically duping foreign investors. The couple was accused of pocketing the funds that it received from the investors in the name of building a cancer treatment center. The Supreme Court, in its ruling, also mentioned that any fine imposed should solely be calculated and imposed on the basis of benefitting the victims and must not be taken to account for punitive damages. The SC ruling is applicable for all defendants irrespective of whether they belong to the crypto sector or not. The ruling by the Supreme Court is considered a pivotal victory considering SEC has been particularly strict with the crypto firms.

The decision was passed by the Supreme Court after an 8-1 vote and was anchored by Justice Sonia Sotomayor. The only dissenter in the vote was the conservative Justice Clarence Thomas, who claimed that imposing punitive fines is not an authorized solution in such cases.

In the last year itself, the Securities and Exchange Commission has collected nearly $1.5 billion in punitive fines and penalties. Of the fines collected by SEC, over $1.2 billion went to the investors who were duped in such fraudulent operations. The argument made by Liu and Wang circled around the fact that Congress has never authorized the SEC to impose disgorgements, which makes imposing fines is unruly by itself. It is well-known that SEC has been quite strict in the crypto sector. The regulations by SEC have stifled the growth of many crypto-based firms as well as promising Initial Coin Offerings. Many crypto-based investment opportunities have taken a hard hit due to SEC supervision and regulations.

The hard-line approach by SEC to counter and monitor any fraudulent activities in the crypto space has made even the legal activities move slowly. In April, the SEC charged another Houston based couple, who were accused of running a fraudulent operation and defrauding their investors of over $500,000. While the couple, pastor and his wife, ran many fraudulent operations, one of it was a crypto-based offering that was allegedly backed by packaged water business. The amount charged by SEC included not only the amount they collected but also the interest and the civil penalties. The final amount of punitive fines imposed came out to be much higher than the amount of fraudulent operation collected.

It is what is changed in the recent Supreme Court ruling. In other words, the SEC won’t have the authority anymore to impose a fine of more than $500,000 on the couple, which equals the amount they stole from their investors. The collected amount would go back to the investors. Also, the ruling ensures that in case any amount of water has been offered back to the investors for their money, such an amount would be deducted from the sum fined. The court ruling has provided some relief to the crypto space and would certainly help curb the hard-line approach of SEC it has been maintaining for a while now.

Will Trump’s Social Media Executive Order Help Against Crypto YouTube Bans?

The president of America, Donald Trump is known for his outspoken nature. He is often seen making comments about the latest happenings around the world. While US elections were taking place, he made a tweet that was soon deleted by Twitter.

Trump posted those tweets on the voting and ballots and hashtag was fact-check. This led to the deletion of this tweet that said, “Get the facts about mail-in ballots”. After the deletion of his tweet, Trump posted another tweet.

According to Twitter, his tweet could lead to corruption and fraud. To which Trump did not agree and mentioned in his tweet as well. Trump made it clear in his tweet that Twitter is interfering with the 2020 Presidential Election.

Crypto YouTubers Have Also Been Banned Recently

This is not the first time a social media platform has targeted an internet entity. The crypto YouTubers have also become the target of social media censorship. There are many YouTube channels and videos that were banned and flagged over the last six months.

YouTube has started to ban many successful and popular crypto channels. Many influencers were banned from the platform in December 2019. One such example is Ivan on Tech. Once he received a flag, it immediately made him alert and he shifted his videos on the private mode.

Another popular crypto content maker was Chris Dunn. Chris Dunn’s channel had more than 210, 000 subscribers. He suddenly noticed that YouTube has deleted every video that mentioned Cryptocurrency. According to YouTube, it was harmful to its users and mentioned the sale of unregulated goods. He was stunned at this and his anger exploded through a tweet on Twitter.

In the first quarter of 2020, another series of a ban was imposed on some popular crypto YouTubers. This time it hit a trading YouTuber, Tone Vays. One of the most common reason to ban such channels was links to external links that mentioned exchanges.

YouTube has not banned every crypto-related channel just the ones having external links. Some of the YouTube channels were also restored after a certain period. But the restoration period was not the same in every case. Some of the banned channels are running smoothly today.

Some channels continuously appealed to restore their content but all in vain. For instance, CryptosRus channel’s appeal was sidelined by YouTube even after multiple requests. This channel is still not active on the present day.

Some YouTubers are searching for other platforms to share their content and get paid. There are limited video sharing platforms that also allows its users to monetize their content. This by far the biggest reason for many YouTubers to join this platform.

Trump’s Social Media Executive Order And YouTube Bans

American president Donald Trump has signed Social Media Executive order. This order seems to be a relief for many social media entities who are using the platforms as a means of income.

Trump believes that America is a country where freedom of speech has been a talk of the town since the beginning. We are living in a world where every country has come even closer to each other through social media platforms.

There are a limited number of social media platforms that are being used by the American public regularly. The country relies on such platforms to stay up to date every day. These platforms have to become public-centric.

But a question has arisen in the favor of crypto YouTubers. Is it going to give the famous YouTubers a relief? Of course, it can. The social media executive has removed the authority of platforms to hide, ban, or remove a content that seems harmful.

This order can also be dangerous in the worst scenario of someone using it to spread fake news. But it has given crypto social media influencers an immunity. They can run their content within the limits of the platforms. There will be no over-censorship on any YouTuber as of now.

The blockchain giants, on the other hand, are working on creating a platform where there is no censorship on crypto-related content. Such a platform will be more useful because then crypto content makers will not have to worry about the constant threat of sudden removal of their videos or posts. Hence, it will solve the issue altogether.