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Arun Srivastav

Articles by Arun Srivastav

Crypto Twitter Betting on ‘Hyperinflation’ Catapulting BTC to $1 Million in 3 Months 

6 days ago

Balaji Srinivasan, a venture capitalist and former CTO of Coinbase, claimed that the US economy would enter a phase of hyperinflation in 90 days, catapulting BTC to $ 1 million. 
Balaji, whose crypto venture was acquired by Coinbase in 2019, also offered to pay $1 million in BTC to the best 1,000 tweets that alert about stealth financial crisis.  
Balaji Bets BTC to be at $1 Million 

Yes. Just moving money for the bet. We can do it via smart contract, but for simplicity old-fashioned escrow may work.
The escrow person would need one BTC address and one ETH address (for the USDC). The assets would sit on chain for 90 days.
If BTC < $1M in 90 days after…
— Balaji (@balajis) March 18, 2023

“… I am putting up the BitSignal. $1M in BTC to

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Consumer Confidence in Crypto Strong Despite Turbulent 2022: Paxos Survey  

14 days ago

After a series of high-profile collapses and the ensuing regulatory heat in their wake, if you thought the crypto saga had hit a roadblock, you can’t be held wrong. However, a new survey by Paxos, the New York-headquartered blockchain technology company, offers a new spin to the tale.
It says 75% of consumers are confident about the future of cryptocurrencies. 
Neither Daunted Nor Deterred
As many as 72% of the respondents of Paxos’ Cryptocurrency Adoption & Purchasing Behavior Survey asserted that they were not concerned with the volatility seen in the crypto market in 2022.
Consumers’ trust in intermediaries such as crypto exchanges, mobile payment apps, and banks for crypto holding remains high at 89%. It hints that the series of recent implosions may not have subdued

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G20 Meeting of Financial Chiefs Takes A Step Forward Towards Crypto Regulations 

20 days ago

The G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors (FMCBG) Meeting on February 24-25 in Bengaluru, India, concluded with a strong commitment to regulations for the cryptocurrency sector. 
The International Monetary Fund (IMF), Bank for International Settlements (BIS), and Financial Stability Board (FSB) have been tasked to come up with recommendations and a roadmap for regulating the cryptocurrency sector.  
G20 Meeting of Financial Chiefs  
“We look forward to the IMF-FSB Synthesis Paper, which will support a coordinated and comprehensive policy approach to crypto-assets, by considering macroeconomic and regulatory perspectives, including the full range of risks posed by crypto assets,” The G20 Chair’s Summary and Outcome Document said.
Besides the finance ministers and

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These 3 Crypto Assets Account for 85% of $70M Crypto Donations to Ukraine: Report

26 days ago

It was on February 24, 2022, that Russia launched the military offensive on Ukraine. On the completion of one year of the war, Chainalysis came up with a report tracking crypto donations to both Russia and Ukraine.
The report says Ukraine received nearly $70 million and pro-Russian groups $5.4 million in crypto donations since the war broke out last year. 
Crypto Donations to Ukraine  
The donations to Ukraine came mostly in ETH, BTC, USDT, and USDC, with their shares being $28.9 million, $22.8 million, $11.5 million, and $1.2 million, respectively.  
Around 80% of the crypto donations came in the initial few months of the war. A Chainalysis report dated March 28, 2022, revealed that nearly $56 million worth of crypto was received by Ukraine by that time. 

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WazirX Shuts Down NFT Marketplace Due to Low Traction

29 days ago

Indian crypto exchange WazirX has wound up its NFT marketplace operations with immediate effect. Currently, the WazirX NFT site displays a message to this effect. 
WazirX NFT Sunsetted
“The WazirX NFT marketplace has been sunsetted. You can still trade your NFTs on OpenSea,” the message reads. 
In a statement on its site, Wazir said despite creating a “safe and secure” marketplace, the business “did not gain much traction.”        
“NFTs are decentralized, and owners have complete control over their assets, which is why they have become so popular. Our users can rest assured that they can continue to hold their NFTs in their wallets, and these can be sold in other marketplaces such as OpenSea,” the statement clarified. 
A report by Inc42 said that WazirX NFTs has 52,253

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Hong Kong’s Crypto Trading Launch Makes Coinbase CEO Question the US Position    

February 18, 2023

Hong Kong’s position as an upcoming hub of crypto businesses is being increasingly noticed and discussed in the relevant circles.
In a tweet, Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong referred to the city-state to stress that the United States may lose its position as the financial hub of the world for lacking crypto regulations.
Armstrong Calls for Regulations
“America risks losing it’s status as a financial hub long term, with no clear regs on crypto, and a hostile environment from regulators. Congress should act soon to pass clear legislation. Crypto is open to everyone in the world and others are leading. The EU, the UK, and now HK,” Armstrong said, retweeting a post saying Hong Kong will make it legal to sell, purchase, and trade crypto assets for all its citizens from June 1.

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Cathie Wood’s Ark Invest Buys $9.2M Worth of Coinbase’s COIN Amid Price Drops

February 14, 2023

Cathie Wood, Founder and CEO of Ark Invest, continues to be bullish on Coinbase, whose share price is down by nearly 85% from its all-time high of $348.98 on November 12, 2021.  
Making the third investment in two months and fourth since November, Ark Invest acquired $9.2 million worth of COIN shares on Friday, media reports asserted.  
A Bloomberg report from three months ago said Ark Invest made $56 million worth of Coinbase shares in November 2022 alone.
Ark Invest’s COIN Purchases  
In the latest round, the investment firm bought 162,325 COIN shares. In the previous two, on January 5 and January 12, the company accumulated Coinbase shares worth $5.8 million and $3.3 million, respectively. In December, it purchased $11.9 million worth of COIN. 
On January 5, the day Ark

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India’s Retail CBDC Pilot Onboards 50K Users, RBI to Continue with ‘Go Slow’ Approach

February 11, 2023

India’s retail CBDC pilot, launched on December 1, has onboarded 50,000 users and 5,000 merchants. In the two-month period, 0.77 million e-rupee transactions were carried out, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) said.
Right now, digital rupee (e-rupee) transactions are available in a closed group of banks, cities, and merchants.
India CBDC Plan will Go Slow
“We want the process to happen, but we want the process to happen gradually and slowly. We are in no hurry to make something happen so quickly,” T Rabi Sankar, Deputy Governor of RBI, said at post-policy press conference early this week.
He added that the RBI has its targets in terms of users and merchants, and it will go slowly.
Indian Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman officially announced in February 2022, during her

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WazirX’s Comeback on Denial of Wallet Services Threatens Binance with Legal Action

February 9, 2023

The opaque and intriguing ownership of the Indian crypto exchange WazirX continues to baffle investors and crypto honchos alike. Over the past two weeks, Binance and WazirX top executives once again came to blows over the issue.
In August 2022, Binance CEO Changpeng Zhoa and WazirX CEO Nischal Shetty publicly accused each other of lying about the latter’s ownership.
WazirX Threatens Binance With Legal Action
In the latest, WazirX described the allegations made by Binance’s February 3 statement, which gave its estranged Indian partner just a few hours to withdraw all its funds from its wallets and accounts, as “false and unsubstantiated.”
Responding to the deadline, WazirX tweeted later that day that it was “transferring assets to multi-sig wallets,” which it expected to

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Ripple CTO Describes XRP Buyback Theory as an ‘Awful’ Lot of ‘Scam’

February 6, 2023

Should the United States consider making XRP the reserve currency of the world and buy its entire holding from the market? 
Well, this speculative idea floated by Jimmy Vallee, Managing Director of Valhill Capital, in 2021 is once again doing rounds after he talked about it in a recent interview. 
But Ripple Lab’s CTO David Schwartz says he has not even looked at it closely. 
Sounds Like a Scam
The latest to rubbish Vallee’s speculative buyback theory is Ripple’s CTO, David Schwartz, who called it a scam in a tweet on Monday. 
“I haven’t looked at it very closely. But what I have seen looks an awful lot like a scam to me. If we’ve learned anything from 2012 and 2022 it’s that anyone promising high returns with low risk is almost certainly going to rob you,”

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Indian Minister Says Crypto Transactions Are Fine as Long as They Follow Laws 

January 22, 2023

In a significant development that indicates that the Indian government may not fully chime with the central bank’s overly hostile stance against cryptocurrencies, a junior minister explained that such activities are fine as long as they follow existing laws. 
This is in sharp contrast to the Reserve Bank of India’s (RBI) ban on crypto in 2018 and not fully opening up to the sector even when the Supreme Court scrapped the RBI order in 2022, calling it illegal.  
Crypto Is Fine 
“There is nothing today that outlaws crypto as long as you follow the legal process,” Rajeev Chandrasekhar, Minister of State for Information Technology and Electronics, told an event on Thursday.
These remarks assume significance as the Indian government will be presenting the annual budget for the

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El Salvador’s Alejandra Guajardo Walks Miss Universe Stage in Glowing Bitcoin Suit

January 15, 2023

The Miss Universe 2023 contest had various show-stopper moments during its National Costume Competition today. 
But for the cryptocurrency sector, it came when El Salvador’s Alejandra Guajardo sashayed the stage in a Bitcoin suit. 
Alejandra Guajardo. Source: RedditBTC on Miss Universe Stage 
The 27-year-old actress and model showcased the evolution of her country’s currency through a dress she wore at the Miss Universe contest. She came on stage in a golden bitcoin outfit, holding a scepter with a BTC logo.
In a striking resemblance to the BTC logo, her outfit had three prominent colors – gold, silver, and bronze. Guajardo sported a big coin model on the back, with her country’s name engraved on it.
Guajardo’s bitcoin outfit quickly became the talking point in the

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The PI Network Controversy: Here’s Everything You Need to Know

January 9, 2023

Smartphone-based blockchain mining project Pi Network has issued another clarification on the unauthorized listing of Pi coins, saying they are not available for trading yet.
Pi Network has been in existence since 2018 and launched its Pi coin for mining by its community members, called “Pioneers,” in March 2019. These assets can be traded once Pi Network upgrades to Open Mainnet.
Pi Network Disclaimer
Right now, the network is in the Enclosed Mainnet state, which makes its interaction with any third-party “technically impossible.”
The blockchain project issued a similar disclaimer on December 29, in which it said it was aware of reports that several unauthorized exchanges sought to list Pi or other products purported to be the native cryptocurrency.
“It is important to

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$3.8B of Cumulative Volume Moved Overseas Since Indian Crypto Taxes Kicked In

January 7, 2023

While Indian crypto exchanges lost a significant portion of their trading volume after new taxes for the sector came into force, the losses, so far, were referred to in percentage terms, with most estimates quoting them to be above 90%, compared to the previous year.
Now, a new study has quantified the value of cumulative trading that shifted from Indian to foreign crypto exchanges after the new taxes kicked in.
CryptoPotato reported earlier that Indian traders are flocking to foreign exchanges after the tax and regulatory environment in the country has become “unviable.”
$3.8 Billion Moved
Esya Centre, an Indian think tank on technology policy matters, in a report published on January 3, said that Rs. 32,000 crores ($3.85 billion) of cumulative trade volume shifted from

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Low TDS Collection on Crypto May Spur Indian Government to Reduce Transaction Tax

December 18, 2022

A junior finance minister told the Indian parliament on Tuesday that the government has collected about $7.4 million in TDS on crypto transfers since July 1. 
Given the low numbers, the government may consider the local crypto industry’s demand to reduce the tax to a reasonable level – in the range of 0.01% to 0.05%.
Low TDS Collection
In a written reply in the upper house of the Indian Parliament, Minister of State for Finance Pankaj Chaudhary informed that the Indian government collected Rs 60.46 crore (Approx. $7.4 million) as TDS on crypto transactions since July 1, 2022, media reports said.
He also informed that the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) conducts an awareness program for taxpayers and deductors. Additionally, it undertakes surveys, inquiries, and search

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Indian Crypto Association Seeks Relief from High Taxes

December 5, 2022

A prominent Indian cryptocurrency trade body – Bharat Web3 Association (BWA) – has red-flagged the high taxes and regulatory uncertainty in its draft of concerns and recommendations submitted to the Indian Finance Ministry, which is holding consultations in the run-up to the budget for 2023-24.
A meeting between the BWA representatives and the Indian finance ministry officials, particularly with officials of the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT), is expected to take place next week.
High Taxes Hurting Growth
As per media reports, BWA, which counts Coinbase, CoinDCX, CoinSwtich Kuber, and Polygon, among others, as founding members, has said unfriendly tax policies are hurting the growth of the crypto business in India.
“The BWA aims to highlight the impact of the

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Indian CBDC Fails to Impress Bankers in Initial Trials: Report

December 3, 2022

The initial excitement among Indian bankers over the launch of a central bank-sponsored digital rupee seems to be fizzling out. They find it adding to their paper and accounting work without bringing any significant benefits over the existing procedures.
Bankers point out that the real benefit of e-rupee may be in the retail and consumer sectors.
Bankers Not Enthused
It has been one month since the launch of the e-rupee for the wholesale segment, but bankers don’t seem to be excited by the entry of the digital alternative of the rupee, Reuters said in a report. They also pointed out some drawbacks.
With the e-rupee, the settlement has to be performed individually for each trade. In contrast, payments are netted off before sending them to the clearing agency for bulk

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Crypto Ransom Demanded to Restore Compromised Servers of Indian Hospital: Report 

November 29, 2022

India’s largest and most advanced government-run hospital, more popularly known by its acronym AIIMS (The All India Institute of Medical Sciences), suffered a hack of its servers on November 23. 
Even as they remained out of order for the sixth consecutive day, a new twist emerged in the ongoing multi-agency investigation and restoration effort. 
A leading news agency on Monday claimed that Rs 200 million ($25 million) in ransom has been asked by the attackers to restore nearly 50 servers that were down after the events.
Demand for $25 Million in Ransom
Press Trust of India (PTI) said in a report on Monday that hackers have demanded a ransom of Rs. 200 crores ($ 25 million) in cryptocurrency to restore the compromised servers. 
PTI broke this news on Twitter as well.

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Indian Crypto Companies’ Response to the FTX Collapse

November 27, 2022

The quick downfall of FTX with an $8-10 billion deficit in its balance sheet has left the broader cryptocurrency market reeling under its cascading effects.
Besides Proof of Reserves (PoR) and Reserves to Liability (R2L) Ratio data, Indian crypto exchanges, battling low volume caused by high taxation and an unfriendly regulatory environment, have responded to the evolving situation with some fresh initiatives.
Polygon CEO’s Self-Custody Buzz
Polygon CEO Sandeep Nailwal was the first to moot the idea of self-custody, which turned out to be the new benchmark of transparency and financial health in the crypto industry. In a 5-tweet thread on November 12, he blamed ignoring core fundamentals for the FTX’s collapse.
In particular, he referred to the failure to stick to

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Binance Has No Big Plans for India Due to High Taxation, Says CZ

November 18, 2022

Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao (CZ) has all but given up on India. Pointing out the 1% transaction tax that came into force on 1 July 2022, CZ said it makes crypto trading unviable in India.
Speaking at the TechCrunch Session: Crypto 2022 on November 17 in Miami, CZ further pointed out that Binance is engaged with blockchain associations and influential persons in India to present the industry’s stance before the policymakers, a TechCrunch report said.
CZ Red Flags 1% Transaction Tax
“If you are going to tax 1% on each transaction, there is not going to be that many transactions… To be honest, I don’t think India is a very crypto-friendly environment,” he said.
While CZ maintained his negative outlook on India, first publicly expressed during the Singapore Fintech Festival

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High Taxes Can Kill the Crypto Industry in India, CZ Cautions

November 4, 2022

India’s anti-crypto policy came into sharp focus at the prestigious Singapore Fintech Festival (2-4 November), where Binance CEO flagged high tax rates as undoing the fledgling crypto business in the country. 
With over 60,000 participants and 850 speakers representing top global financial services, banks, and policymaking bodies, Singapore Fintech Festival (SFF) is one of the most awaited events in the digital assets and fintech industry. 
CZ on Indian Crypto Taxes
Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao (CZ), during a panel discussion at SFF that was live-streamed, said, “India has high tax, which is probably going to kill the industry.” He was referring to new crypto taxes that became effective from April this year, media reports noted.  
India introduced a 30% capital gains tax and

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3 Indian Crypto Exchanges on Investigators’ Radar for $3.5B Illegal Drug Transactions

October 30, 2022

Indian investigation agencies are probing three crypto exchanges for their roles in illegal drug trade transactions after they were alerted by the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU), which has zeroed in on nearly 200 such transactions.
These financial dealings for suspected drug deals in Nigeria, the Cayman Islands, and the British Virgin Islands were reportedly carried out through three Indian digital asset management companies, a report in the Economic Times said. 
Illegal Drug Transactions
Enforcement Directorate (ED) and Income Tax Department, among other agencies, are probing the case.
“Digital currency was used to buy and sell drugs and some of these companies facilitated it…So far the agency has been able to track transactions worth Rs 28,000 crore [$3.5 billion],”

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Rapid Tech Adoption and Talents Make India a Key Player in Global Web3 Market: Study

October 24, 2022

A series of enabling factors places India at the forefront of global Web3 transformation, said a report by Nasscom, a no-profit apex body of the $227-billion Indian tech industry.
It identifies the rapid adoption of new technologies, vast talent pool, and robust startup ecosystem as the key drivers of the nation’s push for a key role in the global Web3 market. 
India Web3 Landscape
Launched in Bengaluru last week, the report – The India Web3 Startup Landscape: An Emerging Technology Leadership Frontier – has been prepared jointly by Nasscom and a Web3 venture capital firm, Hashed Emergent. 
It says India has 450 Web3 startups, and four of them are unicorns. Also, these entities received $1.3 billion of venture funding in two years, from 2020 to 2022.
Although 60% are

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Reports of Do Kwon Escaping Via Dubai ‘Not False,’ Says South Korean Prosecutor     

October 21, 2022

South Korean Prosecutors have confirmed that Do Kwon might have fled Singapore as he was believed to be in hiding there.
In a text message on Thursday, reported by Bloomberg, they said reports suggesting that Kown flew to Dubai for a possible stopover before escaping to an unknown destination are “not false.”
Hunt for Do Kwon 
Kwon left South Korea in April, and certain reports suggested he was in Singapore until the arrest warrant was issued against him. His family and key finance personnel also left the Eastern Asian country in May. as he disbanded Terraform’s local operations. 
The Singapore police argued last month that Kwon was not present in the city-state. Reacting to the arrest warrant, Kwon said he was not on the run but cooperating with watchdogs in different

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Idea of Tech-Driven Regulatory Framework Under G20 Receives Mixed Reactions  

October 19, 2022

A day after Indian Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman spoke about her plans to work towards a tech-driven regulatory framework for cryptocurrencies under the aegis of G20, industry leaders offered mixed reactions to her statements.    
Sitharaman spoke about crypto regulations to reporters on the sidelines of the fall meetings at IMF, World Bank, and G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governor (FMCBG) in Washington last week, media reports said. 
Positive but Contradictory 
India Blockchain Forum’s Co-founder Sharat Chandra said Sitharaman’s statement that technology should not suffer to uphold regulation has “sent a positive message to builders and entrepreneurs in the crypto-tech space. It’s a significant development for the digital asset and fintech industry,”

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India Police Launch Pilot Polygon-Based Complaint Registration Portal

October 15, 2022

An Indian district, Firozabad, about 40 km from Agra of Taj Mahal’s fame in the Indian province of Uttar Pradesh, would start the registration of complaints police complaints on the blockchain network. 
The district, with 2.4 million people and 21 police stations, aims to achieve immutability and transparency of complaints lodged by victims of crime by leveraging this emerging technology.   
Blockchain-Based Complaint Portal 
“Using emerging technologies like Blockchain, a pilot portal,, has been launched which is free of cost, dedicated to the city… The benefit of using Blockchain is that the complaints registered on it can’t be tampered with as data recorded is immutable and transparent,” Ashish Tiwari, Senior Superintendent of Police,

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Creditors Oppose Immunity From Future Bankruptcy Lawsuits Plans for Voyager Execs

October 14, 2022

Lawyers representing the Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors (UCC) of Voyager Digital have raised objections to sweeping legal immunity being planned for the firm’s senior executives.
Last month, the Sam Bankman-Fried (SBF)-led crypto exchange FTX won the bid for Voyager for $1.4 billion, beating Binance in the race. However, the Voyager management has reportedly added immunity from future lawsuits for its top executives as a precondition for the deal to get through. 
Creditor Group’s Objections  
In a filing with the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York on Wednesday, they said the “broad releases” being offered to Voyager’s top executives are, in effect, aimed at shielding those who are “principally responsible” for the financial

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India’s ED Freezes $1.6 Million in BTC of Accused in Gaming App Fraud

October 2, 2022

In a two-year-old gaming app fraud case, the top Indian financial crime investigating agency has frozen 85.9 bitcoins, equivalent to $1.6 million, held in an account on Binance. Separately, it also froze WRX, the native coin of WazirX, and USDT together, worth nearly $550,000.
Earlier this month, the agency raided several premises in Kolkata in this case and recovered Indian currency equivalent to $2.2 million. The accused in this estimated $8.5 million scam is 25-year-old Aamir Khan.
E-Nuggets Scam
E-Nuggets, which ran mainly during the Covid-19 lockdown, offered various games and an app wallet service for the participants to deposit their money and earn attractive incentives.
“Aamir Khan … launched a mobile gaming application, namely E-Nuggets, which was designed for the

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BIS Proclaims Success in Multi-CBDC Cross-Border Payment Pilot Project

October 1, 2022

The Bank for International Settlements (BIS) on Tuesday announced that a multi-jurisdiction CBDC pilot spearheaded by BIS Innovation Hub has been successful. The project saw 164 transactions worth nearly $22 million in real-value cross-border payments through a purpose-built multi-CBDC platform – mBridge.  
Apart from the central banks of Hong Kong, China, Thailand, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE), 20 commercial banks also participated in the project, which lasted a little over a month.
Multi-CBDC Cross-Border Payments  
Over $12 million worth of official digital assets (CBDC) was issued by the four participating central banks to the test platform, BIS said in a Linkedin post. 
“It took place from 15 August to 23 September on the mBridge Ledger, a custom-developed #DLT

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Hackers Breach Jason Falovitch’s Wallet and Steal NFTs, ETH Worth $150K

September 26, 2022

Controversial crypto entrepreneur Jason Falovitch on Sunday reported that hackers breached his crypto wallet on OpenSea and stole four NFTs and six ETH.
The value of the stolen assets is estimated to be in the range of $150,000, media reports said.
In a similar incident, earlier this month, famous American actor and comedian Bill Muray became a victim of hackers and lost 119.2 ETH worth $185,000 that he had just finished raising through his NFT action for a charity.  
Asking to fix responsibility on the wallet service provider, a user sued OpenSea for $1 million after he lost his Bored Ape NFT in a phishing attack. The plaintiff claimed that OpenSea must accept some responsibility for the heist.
Falovitch’s Loss       
The four NFTs that hackers illegally transferred out

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