Analysis: The increasing scope of UK cryptocurrency regulation

Analysis With the price of Bitcoin rising past US$50,000 in February, the profile of - and investor interest in – cryptoassets continues to increase. With this, the global regulatory landscape is swiftly evolving with recent calls for cryptocurrency to be subject to tightened rules and HM Treasury releasing an important new consultation.

Less than three years ago, Parliament’s Treasury Committee referred to cryptoasset markets as a “Wild West”, in which consumers were...

Generation Z: How post-millennial young people are engaging with blockchain

Feature In 2019, Gen Z surpassed millennials and baby boomers to become the largest generation in the world, making up a third of the global population. This demographic dominance alone makes those born between 1995 and 2010, an important consideration for cryptocurrency markets and blockchain tech firms. What’s more, Gen Z’s comfort with and strong preference for digitised transactions makes them an even more important demographic in these...

KPMG, BitGo, and Coin Metrics launch combined offering for public blockchains

Global accounting firm KPMG has announced the launch of a suite of products and services designed to enable increased adoption of cryptoassets and public blockchains in a combined offering with digital asset firms BitGo and Coin Metrics.

The collaboration seeks to bring KPMG’s Chain Fusion services, capabilities and accelerators; BitGo’s custody technology; and Coin Metrics’ data and intelligence products to market through a deeply integrated offering.

The...

Tether and Bitfinex reach $18.5m settlement with New York’s Attorney General

Crypto firms Tether and Bitfinex have reached a settlement with the New York Attorney General’s (NYAG) Office over a controversial case that began in April 2019.

As part of the settlement, both firms must discontinue any trading activity with New York citizens and are also required to provide quarterly reports and public disclosures on core business functions. Finally, the firms are required to pay $18.5 million (£13.1m) in penalties to the NYAG.

In April 2019, the...

UPCO2 becomes first tradable carbon credit token listed on Bittrex Global

Universal Carbon (UPCO2) has become the first environmental crypto commodity to be listed on leading digital asset trading platform Bittrex Global.

UPCO2 is marketed as the world’s first tradable REDD+ carbon credit token and was launched on December 1 2020. As this publication reported last month, crypto broker Uphold noted the concept as one which “democratises access to millennials… 90% [of whom] now cite impact investing as their top strategy with climate change as the...

Mastercard to begin supporting payments in cryptocurrencies

Financial services giant Mastercard has announced that it will begin supporting a select number of cryptocurrencies on its payment network later this year.

In a recent blog post, the company stated that it is ‘preparing… for the future of crypto and payments’ as it becomes the latest major corporation to embrace the use of cryptocurrencies.

This innovation, which will facilitate direct payments of certain cryptocurrencies through the Mastercard network, will allow...

Charles Hoskinson, Founder, Cardano: On restoring trust through decentralisation

The Block spoke with Cardano founder Charles Hoskinson about the blockchain industry and restoring trust through decentralisation ahead of the platform’s upcoming launch of smart contracts.

Hoskinson co-founded the current decentralised app platform leader, Ethereum, but left the project following a dispute about accepting venture capital and the need for a more formal governing structure. He went on to found Cardano in 2015 and became the CEO of the project’s main developer,...

Chainalysis investigation shows connections between four notorious ransomware strains

Chainalysis, a blockchain analysis company, has released part of a report showing potential connections between four major ransomware cybercrime groups.

The company's 2021 Crypto Crime Report, which is due to be fully released in February, analyses blockchain ledgers to identify how cybercriminals are using cryptocurrencies.

Maze, Egregor, SunCrypt, and Doppelpaymer are the primary groups identified in the report.

Use of ransomware has massive increased in...

Featured: The Block’s list of innovative blockchain companies to look out for in 2021

Feature 2021 is going to be an exciting year for blockchain technologies. The launch of Ethereum 2.0, the ongoing volatility of Bitcoin and the intriguing use cases arising from DeFi will continue apace, while enterprise opportunities, from finance, to energy and sustainability, to the wider supply chain, remain.

The Block has selected seven companies to feature for 2021. Read their stories below:

Butterfly Protocol

Butterfly Protocol's goal is to provide a...

Tesla buys $1.5bn in Bitcoin, plans to begin accepting it as form of payment

Tesla announced on Monday that it has invested $1.5 billion (£1.1bn) into Bitcoin back in January, and that it plans to start accepting it as a form of payment soon.

The car firm, who has seen its share price soar in the past year, specified in a stock market filing on its forward-looking statements for 2021 that it has updated its investment policy to allow for ‘more flexibility to further diversify and maximise returns on cash that is not required to maintain adequate...