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Hacker Confesses To 100,000 XRP Fraud

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Hacker ConfessesTo 100,000 XRP Fraud
Hacker Confesses To 100,000 XRP Fraud

Hacker Confesses To 100,000 XRP Fraud

Katherine Nguyen is the first-ever Australian resident to plead guilty for cryptocurrency fraud after stealing 100,000 XRP. In 2018, twenty-four-year-old Nguyen hijacked the email account of an elderly man of the same surname for two days before handing back access.

It’s unclear where the XRP was held, however, two days was more than enough for Ms. Nguyen to drain the account of all funds.  Detectives conducted a ten-month investigation following the theft that left digital crumbs to Chinese exchanges. 

Cryptocurrency scams are a common occurrence these days. Their pervasiveness has fuelled the flames over the safety and legitimacy of digital currencies as an alternative form of money.  Ironically, this landmark decision may bolster crypto’s utility. As Nguyen was leaving the court, 7News Correspondent Evan Batten asked her:

“Did you think you were going to get away with it because it just wasn’t real money?”

Last year the Sydney Morning Herald reported that the theft was the first of its kind in Australia. Detective Superintendent of the New South Wales Cybercrime unit, Arthur Katsogiannis, explained:

“It’s a very significant crime and it’s the first we know of its type in Australia where an individual has been arrested and charged for the technology-enabled theft of cryptocurrency.”

The landmark case suggests that Australian authorities, if nothing else, consider cryptocurrency a major store of value.

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CFTC Hires Former Coinbase Executive As Their Director of Market Oversight

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CFTC Hires Former Coinbase Executive As Their Director of Market Oversight
CFTC Hires Former Coinbase Executive As Their Director of Market Oversight

Coinbase’s vice president Dorothy D. DeWitt will now serve as director of the division of market oversight at the United States Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC).

The U.S. CFTC Chairman Heath P. Tarbert announced on Sept. 17 that DeWitt will take responsibility for the CFTC’s oversight over derivatives platforms and swap data repositories, as well as other new platform-traded products.

Before joining the CFTC, DeWitt served as vice president and general counsel for business lines and markets at U.S.-based cryptocurrency exchange and wallet provider Coinbase. DeWitt also held positions as a partner and portfolio manager at asset management firm Cadogan Management, and served at asset management group GAM, among other positions. Commenting on the appointment, Tarbert said:

“I am excited Dorothy will soon be joining our team. She brings to the CFTC more than 20 years of private sector experience in the financial services and legal fields. Her strong investment, risk, legal, and compliance background and familiarity with distributed ledger technology, including crypto assets, will be invaluable as the agency looks to develop a holistic approach to regulating 21st-century commodities.”

DeWitt is not the first Coinbase’s officer who has transitioned to the CFTC. In July, the agency announced that it was hiring Andrew L. Ridenour as senior counsel to the chairman. Ridenour joined the CFTC from Coinbase where he worked as counsel for institutional products.

Tarbert became chairman of the CFTC in mid-July. His predecessor J. Christopher Giancarlo’s five-year tenure saw the rise of cryptocurrency derivatives as an object of regulatory oversight. 

Widely regarded as the crypto industry’s ally, Giancarlo — known as “Crypto Dad” — superintended the historic launch of regulated Bitcoin futures and advocated for a “do no harm” approach to blockchain regulation in his testimony before the U.S. Congress.

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Regulation News

Chinese Regulators Warn Crypto Miners In Mongolia

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Chinese Regulators Warn Crypto Miners In Mongolia
Chinese Regulators Warn Crypto Miners In Mongolia

Chinese authorities have issued a notice to ministries within the autonomous province of Inner Mongolia to crackdown on cryptocurrency mining in the region.

Five ministries and commissions in Inner Mongolia have been issued a warning to clean up cryptocurrency mining, which is heavily regulated under Chinese law. The document refers to crypto mining as “pseudo-financial innovation” that exists outside of the regular economy, 

“The virtual currency ‘mining’ industry belongs to the pseudo-financial innovation unrelated to the real economy, and should not be supported.”

The crackdown will be carried out in two phases, according to details in the report. Phase I will occur from Sept. 3 to Sept. 25, allowing the ministries in question time for “self-examination and self-correction” in regards to crypto mining. 

The second phase, which is set to begin on Sept. 30, will involve supervision and rectification by a joint inspection team to thoroughly review any ongoing crypto operations. 

While some miners in the region have feared greater pressure from the Chinese government, other members of the crypto community remain skeptical. Dovey wan, co-founder of Primitive Ventures and regular crypto pundit responded to the news by predicting that it would have little impact.

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Regulation News

Libra Association Looking To Get Swiss Payments License

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Libra Association Looking To Get Swiss Payments License
Libra Association Looking To Get Swiss Payments License

Facebook is seeking a payment system license under Switzerland’s Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA) for its planned stablecoin project. 

In an official statement today, the Switzerland-registered Libra Association — a not-for-profit membership organization established to govern the Libra network — explained its choice to coordinate a regulatory framework with the Swiss watchdog:

“Switzerland offers a pathway for responsible financial services innovation harmonized with global financial norms and strong oversight. We are engaging in constructive dialogue with FINMA and are encouraged to see a feasible pathway for an open-source blockchain network to become a regulated, low-friction, high-security payment system.”

FINMA has notably this summer released guidance on regulatory requirements for payments on the blockchain, which applies to blockchain service providers including exchanges, wallet providers and trading platforms. 

The guidance adheres to the framework for digital asset regulation issued this June by the intergovernmental Financial Action Task Force (FATF), which includes provisions for Anti Money Laundering (AML) measures, Know Your Customer compliance, risk-monitoring systems and more. FINMA has gone a step further than the FATF’s provisions in refusing to exempt payments that involve unregulated wallet providers from its oversight.

Earlier this week, a United States Treasury official had told reporters in Geneva that it was imperative that the Libra project satisfy the highest standards for combating money laundering and countering terrorism financing if it is to be approved by regulators and lawmakers. 

At a hearing before U.S. representatives in mid-July, David Marcus — chief of Facebook’s Calibra wallet service — had claimed that the choice had “nothing to do with evading regulations or oversight,” arguing instead that the jurisdiction is an international hub conducive to doing business.

In August, U.S. lawmakers visited Switzerland to meet with local financial regulators and government officials about Libra, expressing their persistent “concerns […] with allowing a large tech company to create a privately controlled, alternative global currency.” On Sept. 5, Swiss National Bank President Thomas Jordan said that stablecoins pegged to foreign currencies could — in some circumstances — adversely impact Switzerland’s monetary policy.

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