HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC), the UK’s tax authority, is looking for a crypto analytics tool. But just how anonymous is Bitcoin?

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Earlier this week, news outlets reported that HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC), the UK’s tax authority, is looking for a blockchain analytics tool. The tax agency is offering £100,000 for software that can identify those who use crypto for purposes such as “tax evasion and money-laundering.”

“Many of these crypto-asset transactions are recorded publicly in a ledger known as a blockchain. Whilst the transactions are typically public, the participants undertaking them are not,” said HMRC.

“Crypto assets, such as Bitcoin and Ethereum, provide a means to transfer value between interacting parties,” they continue. “[…] These services are increasingly used for a range of purposes, from international money transfers, sales of digital services, paying staff, and tax evasion and money laundering.” …


Understand the CBDC hype.

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Earlier this week, Reuters reported that a number of major central banks are joining forces to explore the issues around developing their own digital currencies. The central banks of Britain, the euro zone, Japan, Sweden, Canada and Switzerland will make up the new group, which will assess economic, functional, and technical design choices, as well as cross-border interoperability.

The US Federal Reserve was absent from the recent discussions and we can’t say we’re surprised considering the country’s unstable political landscape at the moment. …


“Innovation is a mysteriously difficult thing to dictate. Technology seems to change by a sort of inexorable, evolutionary progress, which we probably cannot stop–or speed up much either.” Matt Ridley, The Wall Street Journal

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If the speed of technological advancement seems like it’s accelerating at an unprecedented pace, it’s because it is. By using newer technology to create and innovate, an increase in the quality and speed of these innovations are likely to follow. Think about your first mobile phone or computer and think about the ones you own today. …


Bitcoin’s hash rate has been in the news, reaching a number of record milestones. But what does it mean and does it matter?

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In case you’ve been living under a rock, or on Mars (and if that’s the case — what’s it like and how can we join you?) Bitcoin’s hash rate has been in the news.

In mid-September, the most popular cryptocurrency on Earth reached a huge milestone by surpassing a hash rate of over 100 quintillion hashes per second.


What’s the truth around Bitcoin mining energy consumption? And how is the industry working to minimise its energy usage?

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Bitcoin has been dealing with scepticism since its inception. Some theories are wilder than others, but arguably one of the most latched-onto debates has been around Bitcoin’s energy consumption and its alleged harmful level of emissions. Some have even gone so far as to claim that Bitcoin mining emissions could be responsible for a 2°C temperature increase in a decade’s time.

But is Bitcoin mining really as dangerous for the environment as some may have you believe? Do a quick Google search of Bitcoin’s energy consumption and you’ll be confounded by a variety of disparate views. …


Start your week off with an insight into how Bakkt could increase consumer adoption for digital currencies, what affect the Bitcoin halving could have on miners, how emerging markets are poised to snap up CBDCs, and more.

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Emerging markets open arms to CBDCs

Banks in emerging markets are reportedly mobilising to issue government-sponsored CBDCs (central bank digital currencies) before their established economy counterparts, according to a recent BIS (Bank of International Settlements) survey.

In the survey, 10% of 66 banks questioned, representing 75% of the world’s population and 90% of economic output, reported they would issue the first general-purpose CBDCs in the next three years. This represents 20% of the world’ population.

Himanshu Yadaz, co-founder and managing partner of Woodstock Fund, a multi-asset investment fund said: “As CBDCs are rolled out, more and more people will want to understand what a digital currency is. Some will ignore them, and some will explore them further, leading to a net positive gain in the cryptocurrency ecosystem. …


This week has seen much chatter about crypto’s future in relation to government regulation, interesting power plays from Ripple and another football club adds a fan token. All this and more below.

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Adios, Andrew

Democratic presidential candidate and crypto advocate, Andrew Yang ended his bid for the 2020 election after failing to resonate with voters. Yang is well known for his pragmatic and progressive stance on universal basic income and promoting nationwide crypto regulations as opposed to cumbersome state-by-state policies.

On his website, he explains the pitfalls of the current burdensome and complex landscape of crypto-related regulations: “Currently, different departments of the federal government consider digital assets as property, commodities, or securities. Some states have onerous regulations in the space, such as NY’s BitLicense. Navigating this has had a chilling effect on the US digital asset market. …


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The recent CES 2020 in Las Vegas saw startups and innovators present a host of new technologies, including several projects using crypto and blockchain.

Among these were a number built to cater for better supply chain management–an application of blockchain technology that has been long discussed, but which only now seems to be bearing fruit. But wi

The IBM Food Trust Project

Launched in August 2017, the IBM Food Trust Project enables farmers, grocers, chefs and everyone else involved in the food supply chain to track their produce from seed to plate. The project has already done valuable work. …


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Ditch your perceptions of ten people crammed like sardines in a converted garage, or job ads searching for “social media gurus” and “Wordpress wizards”. Startups are more than that, and roughly 300 million new businesses start up each year.

Working at a startup is most certainly not for everyone, but it does come with a set of unique perks that are sure to set you up for personal and professional success no matter your industry. A 2015 survey by Accenture indicated that only 15% millennials would prefer to work at a large corporation.

What’s so great about working at a startup? …


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Blockchain in gaming isn’t just a gimmick, it could play an important role in the growth of the ecosystem

In 2018, the video gaming market generated $131 billion in revenue, with mobile gaming accounting for more than both PC and console.

About

Team Luno

We write about all things crypto. Our articles convey the views of Luno and the many unique opinions and characters within our team. Tweet us @lunomoney

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