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Shanghai Man: $130M hack raises suspicions, Chinese miners head to Laos, Huobi’s moon mission

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Shanghai Man: $130M hack raises suspicions, Chinese miners head to Laos, Huobi’s moon mission

This weekly roundup of news from Mainland China, Taiwan, and Hong Kong attempts to curate the industry’s most important news, including influential projects, changes in the regulatory landscape, and enterprise blockchain integrations.  

It was a quiet week in the mainland as much of the Chinese crypto community was either lying low, off in Lisbon, or recovering from a week-long hangover following the Shanghai Blockchain Week that concluded over last weekend.

The largest blockchain-related news was the $130 million hack of DeFi platform Boy X Highspeed, or BXH for short. BXH is a decentralized exchange running on BSC, Ethereum, HECO, and OKEx.

🚨🚨We are sorry to announce that BXH was attacked on #BinanceChain. Other chains assets are safe.
We are cooperating with BSC and Peckshield to follow up and trace.#BXH @HECO_Chain @BinanceChain @AnyswapNetwork @O3Swap @renprotocol @cz_binance @peckshield pic.twitter.com/jNo8C53DM0

— BXH (@BXH_Blockchain) October 30, 2021

Even more peculiar than the platform’s name itself is the nature of the hack. It appears that the attacker somehow gained access to the admin key, which leads to plenty of questions about the security and decentralization of the project.

Based on this and the fact that the Chinese project claims to have enlisted the help of Chinese law enforcement, there are suspicions it could be the result of an inside job. BXH has offered a large bounty of up to $10 million for those who can help return the funds. 

This reward announcement was later announced on the BXH Twitter

Huobi not giving up on moon mission

Volumes on Huobi continued to drop, at times falling behind Coinbase Pro and Korean exchange Upbit. Last week Huobi was roughly 60% of the volume on FTX, but it sat on Wednesday at around 40%. It’s also around one-third the volume of major competitor OKEx. Huobi is now less than two months away from its own deadline to close accounts belonging to Chinese users. Huobi will need to dramatically reshuffle to win back the market share it has slowly lost to exchanges with fewer regulatory risks. 

Even with falling volume, it’s hard to bet against the longstanding giant of CeFi

In a strong marketing push, Huobi has announced a contest to send one user into space onboard a private spacecraft. Not all the details were given, but this announcement comes as the exchange celebrates its eigth anniversary, making it one of the older trading institutions in the sector. 

PlatOn claims a partnership with Google Cloud

One of China’s more low-key public chains announced on Twitter it is partnering with the large cloud service provider Google Cloud:

“We will work together to provide basic application technology and enterprise-level platform services for global users, as well as the research and development in blockchain technology, privacy protection, and ecosystem building.”

The announcement didn’t gain much attention, as it’s unclear how much actual reciprocation is happening from Google Cloud’s end. Despite the announcement, the token was down around 6% on Thursday. 

Mining in Southeast Asia

The Southeast Asia country of Laos is exploring cryptocurrency mining in the aftermath of China’s mining crackdown. A pilot project between the government and the private sector is expected to bring in roughly $194 million towards the country’s total domestic revenue projected for 2022.

Laos shares a small southern border with China’s Yunnan province, an area where a lot of miners are still leaving following the announcement from the Energy Administration of Yunnan in June that clarified the national policy would apply to Yunnan itself.

Contacts report that though a lot of miners have left China already, a portion has been laying low, waiting to see if the regulatory environment changes or a better opportunity presents itself. Countries like Laos are interesting potential destinations as regulations are still quite ambiguous. Traditionally, Southeast Asia has been home to a lot of China’s “offshore” businesses, such as gambling or casino games seeking to avoid regulations or law enforcement. 

CBDC gaining traction

China’s central bank is once again boasting about the traction of its centralized digital currency, the e-CNY.  Announcements at Hong Kong’s Fintech week revealed that now more than 140 million people have access to accounts, with over 62 billion transactions processed.

This is a large jump from the previous year and should come as little surprise considering the amount of trial programs that have been rolled out around the country. Many franchise restaurants and retailers are already advertising e-CNY at point of sale devices throughout the country.

It seems likely that number will continue to rise, challenging private apps Alipay and WeChat, both of which claim over 1 billion users each. Supplanting those two will be a difficult task, mainly due to the feature-rich nature of the super-apps. However, the central bank currency surely has a lot more patience and the advantage of regulatory policy-makers that can tilt the market in its favor. 

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Korean Police Ask Crypto Exchanges to Freeze Luna Foundation Guard’s Assets

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Korean Police Ask Crypto Exchanges to Freeze Luna Foundation Guard’s Assets

Korean Police Ask Crypto Exchanges to Freeze Luna Foundation Guard's Assets

The South Korean police have reportedly launched an investigation into possible embezzlement involving an employee of Terraform Labs. To prevent fund transfers, the police have requested crypto exchanges to freeze the Luna Foundation Guard’s accounts.

Embezzlement Investigation and Asset Freeze

The Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency’s Cybercrime ​​Investigation Unit announced Monday that it has launched an investigation into possible embezzlement by an employee of Terraform Labs, local media reported.

An official from the Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency was quoted by Chosun as saying:

We have received information that there is a person suspected of embezzling corporate funds who is believed to be an employee of Terraform Labs.

The police received reports of the alleged embezzlement in the middle of this month and have been looking into the case. As part of the investigation, the police plan to check the details of cash and crypto transactions of Terraform Labs and the Luna Foundation Guard (LFG).

The police explained that there is evidence that embezzled funds had flowed into the Luna Foundation Guard’s accounts. The cybercrime unit has therefore requested major domestic cryptocurrency exchanges, such as Upbit and Bithumb, to “urgently” freeze the accounts belonging to the Luna Foundation Guard to prevent withdrawals of funds held at crypto exchanges.

However, the police’s freeze request is not a compulsory matter according to Korean laws and regulations but a matter that needs to be arbitrarily performed by each crypto exchange. Therefore, it has not been confirmed whether the freeze requests have been carried out, the publication conveyed.

Cryptocurrency terra (LUNA) and stablecoin terrausd (UST) collapsed earlier this month after UST lost its peg to the U.S. dollar.

Following the collapse, the Korean government launched an emergency investigation into the two coins and met with representatives of the country’s top crypto exchanges to discuss measures to prevent similar incidents from happening.

Last week, a number of victims filed a lawsuit against Terraform Labs CEO Kwon Do-hyung (aka Do Kwon) with the Seoul Southern District Prosecutors Office on charges of violating the Act on the Aggravated Punishment of Specific Economic Crimes (fraud) and the Act on the Regulation of Similar Receipts.

In addition, Do Kwon dissolved Terraform Labs Korea days before the collapse of LUNA and UST. While many suspected foul play, Kwon claimed that the timing was just “coincidental.” He also claims that his company does not owe the Korean government any taxes.

What do you think about this case? Let us know in the comments section below.

Kevin Helms

A student of Austrian Economics, Kevin found Bitcoin in 2011 and has been an evangelist ever since. His interests lie in Bitcoin security, open-source systems, network effects and the intersection between economics and cryptography.

Image Credits: Shutterstock, Pixabay, Wiki Commons

Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only. It is not a direct offer or solicitation of an offer to buy or sell, or a recommendation or endorsement of any products, services, or companies. Bitcoin.com does not provide investment, tax, legal, or accounting advice. Neither the company nor the author is responsible, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on any content, goods or services mentioned in this article.

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Registration For The Upcoming VERSE Token By Bitcoin․com Is Now Open

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Registration For The Upcoming VERSE Token By Bitcoin․com Is Now Open

press release

Registrations are now open for the VERSE token sale, which will begin in the later part of June 2022. Interested parties who register can participate in the token sale immediately upon launch.

Miami, Florida – May 23rd, 2022 – VERSE is the rewards and utility token distributed to holders who participate in the Bitcoin.com ecosystem. Bitcoin.com is a global leader in introducing newcomers to cryptocurrency and is the go-to platform for educational resources, news, and more. Bitcoin.com’s ecosystem includes 30 million wallets and more than five million monthly active users across various products and services.

The VERSE token will reward users who engage in buying, selling, spending, swapping, and staying informed about cryptocurrency. Rewards will be allocated by interacting with the Verse DEX, staking VERSE, cashback paid in VERSE, and using VERSE as collateral in various lending pools. Additionally, token holders will receive access to exclusive products and services.

VERSE is a cross-chain token using the ERC-20 token standard on the Ethereum blockchain. The Verse team will actively explore opportunities to expand the token into low-fee Ethereum Virtual Machine-compatible networks to provide an optimal user experience.

The VERSE supply is fixed at 210 billion tokens, distributed over seven years through a block-to-block approach. A further breakdown looks as follows:

  • 10% sold during Sale A (completed in May 2022)
  • 6% being sold during Sale B (coming in June 2022)
  • 15% allocated to the team
  • 35% set aside for ecosystem incentives
  • 34% will be used for funding future development of Verse and its ecosystem

The first token sale raised $33.6 million last month from notable market participants such as Blockchain.com, KuCoin, and Digital Strategies along with thought leaders like Roger Ver, Jihan Wu, and David Wachsman.

“We were honored to see such outspoken support during our first token sale round. Furthermore, we could not be more excited about bringing our second token sale to the public and providing more people with access to VERSE. This new utility token marks a crucial milestone for the Bitcoin.com ecosystem. It will enable us to enhance the mainstream appeal of cryptocurrency and blockchain through our buy/sell services, news coverage, and educational tools” said Dennis Jarvis, CEO Bitcoin.com.

To participate in the upcoming VERSE token sale, interested parties need to register on the Verse website. They will be the first to know when the VERSE token sale is live.

Registrants need an Ethereum wallet – such as the Bitcoin.com Wallet – to receive the VERSE tokens. Payment for the token sale is possible with Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, USDT, and USDC.

The Verse community already counts over twenty-five thousand participants combined across Telegram and Discord. VERSE tokens will be minted following the conclusion of the Verse public sale in July.

The VERSE token sale is not available to U.S. purchasers.

Bitcoin.com

Bitcoin.com is your premier source for everything Bitcoin-related. We can help you buy bitcoins and choose a bitcoin wallet. You can also read the latest news, or engage with the community on our Bitcoin Forum. Please keep in mind that this is a commercial website that lists wallets, exchanges and other Bitcoin-related companies.

Image Credits: Shutterstock, Pixabay, Wiki Commons

Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only. It is not a direct offer or solicitation of an offer to buy or sell, or a recommendation or endorsement of any products, services, or companies. Bitcoin.com does not provide investment, tax, legal, or accounting advice. Neither the company nor the author is responsible, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on any content, goods or services mentioned in this article.

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Popular Radio Presenter Suspended for Alleged Ties to Bitcoin Scam

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Popular Radio Presenter Suspended for Alleged Ties to Bitcoin Scam

South Africa’s national broadcaster has suspended one of its employees that is accused of convincing unsuspecting people, including pensioners, to invest in a cryptocurrency scam. More than 100 people are believed to have fallen victim to promises of very high returns to investors in the bitcoin investment scheme.

300% Return on Investment

The South African state broadcaster recently suspended one of its radio presenters, Sebasa Mogale, after a media exposé suggested he may have been part of a cryptocurrency scam outfit that reportedly promised a 300% return on investment.

The decision to suspend the popular broadcaster, who also plays a role in South Africa’s popular television series Skeem Saam, was made after an investigative report by the media outlet Carte Blanche identified him as one of the masterminds behind the scam that allegedly fleeced more than 100 people.

Reports of Mogale’s suspension were confirmed by Gugu Ntuli, the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) group executive responsible for corporate affairs and marketing. In a statement, the executive said:

Thobela FM has taken a decision to unschedule Sebasa Mogale, (Ntshirogele) Afternoon Drive presenter, following the Carte Blanche exposé. Mr Mogale is being afforded an opportunity to resolve the issues raised in the recent broadcast which pertain to his personal business dealings involving cryptocurrency.

Ntuli added that the SABC will “leave no stone unturned” in its own probe into Mogale’s role in the scam.

A Confidence Trickster

According to an exposé by Carte Blanche, Mogale had used his celebrity status to lure some listeners of his radio show to invest. The media outlet’s report said investors with no training in personal finance management had “cashed in their pensions and savings policies.” However, in the end, Mogale’s promises turned out to be empty.

“But for at least 140 people the man they trusted to guide them through the crypto maze appears to have been little more than a confidence trickster,” reads part of Carte Blanche’s summary of the exposé.

Following news of Mogale’s suspension, some of the victims of the scam have come forward to reveal their losses. Sello Bonoko is quoted in another report explaining he became a victim after he listened to Mogale’s bitcoin investment pitch that “sounded convincing.” He also said he trusted Mogale’s promises primarily because these were made on national radio. Bonoko said he lost more than $14,500 (R230,000).

Meanwhile, a spokesman for the South African police is quoted in the report telling Mogale’s victims to file reports with law enforcement. He said the police can only act after formally receiving the complaints.

What are your thoughts on this story? Tell us what you think in the comments section below.

Terence Zimwara

Terence Zimwara is a Zimbabwe award-winning journalist, author and writer. He has written extensively about the economic troubles of some African countries as well as how digital currencies can provide Africans with an escape route.

Image Credits: Shutterstock, Pixabay, Wiki Commons

Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only. It is not a direct offer or solicitation of an offer to buy or sell, or a recommendation or endorsement of any products, services, or companies. Bitcoin.com does not provide investment, tax, legal, or accounting advice. Neither the company nor the author is responsible, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on any content, goods or services mentioned in this article.

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