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Ripple Attains $10 Billion Valuation after $200 Million Series C

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ripple

Series C

Just yesterday, Ripple announced the successful completion of their Series C raise.  This capital generation event led to the blockchain company bringing in a total of $200 million in investments from various companies.

Valuation

By raising $200 million in this round, Ripple sees their current valuation sitting at, roughly, $10 billion.  This makes the company one of the most valuable to be involved in blockchain.

As companies continue to become increasingly invested in the Ripple, the likelihood of them failing lowers as a result.  This is because they are now able to leverage the capabilities of their strategic partners, as well as have the funds for quicker development of services, in addition to a much longer runway.

As these companies become so large, they can often ensure a successful product through sheer will alone.  While Ripple may not be there yet, they are on their way.

Participating Parties

This round, in particular, was led by a trio of companies with known interest in blockchain based endeavours.

  • Tetragon
    • U.S. based investment company with a net-asset-value (NAV) of $2.3 billion
  • SBI Holdings
    • A Japanese investment firm with ties to Securitize, Ripple, Boerse Stuttgart, and more
  • Route 66 Ventures
    • U.S. based private investment firm geared towards growth stage start-ups involved with FinTech and FinServ

No Fear

The announcement of this successful round of funding comes irrespective of the on-going legal woes which have enveloped Ripple’s future in uncertainty.

In an on-going case involving the SEC, there has been no decision on whether Ripple acted as an unlicensed broker in selling/distributing XRP as a security.

While the company, technically, remains independent of the open-source XRP, they control such a high percentage of the cryptocurrency, that it remains quite centralized.  This centralization results in the ability for Ripple to greatly influence events and markets surrounding XRP.

Investors, however, have shown no fear of the potential negative outcomes which may come from the situation – as made evident by this most recent round.

State of Affairs

As it currently stands, Ripple is soon due in court in an attempt to see the case against them dismissed.  The company has, notably, taken an interesting approach to the case, as their defense isn’t focused on whether they acted as an unlicensed broker.  Rather, they indicate that this is a moot point, as the allegations were levied far too late on the part of the plaintiff.

Commentary

As the world of blockchain continually comes in to focus, there has been an obvious ‘trimming of the fat’ among participating companies.  The reality is that the vast majority of the companies involved are fighting to become the ‘last man standing’ in a competitive pool of participants.  Ripple CEO, Brad Garlinghouse, took the time to comment, touching on that exact sentiment, and how this has benefited Ripple.

“We are in a strong financial position to execute against our vision. As others in the blockchain space have slowed their growth or even shut down, we have accelerated our momentum and industry leadership throughout 2019.”

Ripple

Operating out of San Francisco, Ripple is a blockchain based software company, which was founded in 2012.  The company has established itself as a leader within blockchain, through the development of its RippleNet platform, and vision for the future of payments.

CEO, Brad Garlinghouse, currently oversees company operations.

In Other News

For those that follow Ripple, and their on-going legal woes, it may feel as though it is a never ending saga.  More than a year ago, we were already reporting on the situation, as over 100 individuals at the time sued the outfit for $160 million in damages.  The following article looked at this situation, and the distinction needed to be made between Ripple and XRP.

Ripple files ‘Notice of Removal’

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Joshua Stoner is a multi-faceted working professional. He has a great interest in the revolutionary 'blockchain' technology. In addition to this, he is a licenced Paramedic in Nova Scotia, Canada. As such, he can provide emergency care/medicine to any situation necessitating it.

Cryptocurrency

Investing In Bitcoin (BTC) – Everything You Need to Know

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Bitcoin is an “electric peer-to-peer cash system” according to its anonymous creator, Satoshi Nakamoto. The goal behind Bitcoin’s creation was to create “a system for electronic transactions without relying on trust“. Bitcoin succeeded in this task through a combination of ingenuity, determination, and technological prowess.

It’s hard to imagine a world without Bitcoin. Today, the world’s first and most successful cryptocurrency is a household name. There have been countless TV shows, songs, tributes, artwork, and books dedicated to this revolutionary invention.

Despite all of this attention, most people in the world remain clueless as to how this protocol works, what gives it value, and why so many people are obsessed with it. At its core, Bitcoin is simplistic, you could even say elegant. This revolutionary program was built upon decades of previous developments in the virtual currency sector to create a decentralized currency that is censorship-resistant.

What Problems Does Bitcoin (BTC) Solve?

Bitcoin didn’t enter the market as just some random chance. It was directly built to combat some of the most pressing issues facing humanity at this time. There’s a fundamental core message at the center of Bitcoin. It provides the world with the ability to separate the state from monetary policies. A cryptic message located within the coding of Bitcoin’s Genesis block makes the goal of the project clear. Embedded in the coinbase of this block was the cryptic message:

“The Times 03/Jan/2009 Chancellor on brink of second bailout for banks.”

The message itself refers to a headline in The Times published on the same date listed. The creator of Bitcoin believed that bad monetary policy would lead the world into disaster. Perhaps this is why Bitcoin utilizes only sound financial principles to ensure its value and use.

Inflation

Bad monetary policy usually leads to runaway inflation. When countries experience inflation their currencies plummet in value. Inflation can destroy the local economy and cause citizens to be left in a state of crushing debt. Entire life savings are erased in days when inflation gets out of control. Inflation comes about when the amount of currency in the market exceeds the demand.

Fiat-currency has no maximum supply. Governments and the Federal Reserve can meet up and create new funding as they deem fit. The problem with this approach is that governments are notorious for letting the printers run wild to cover expenses such as infrastructure and wars.

Bitcoin Whitepaper

Bitcoin Whitepaper

Bitcoin doesn’t experience runaway inflation because it has a limited supply of only 21 million coins. This capped supply is introduced to the market in regularly timed intervals. In this way, Bitcoin provides the world with a global reserve currency that is far more predictive than the other systems in place.

Censorship

Censorship is another important issue that Bitcoin tackles head-on. Decentralized networks are historically hard to censor. For example, think of your favorite video streaming platform. That’s another form of a decentralized network. It simply allows you to meet other people online and trade data, regardless of what it is.

Bitcoin is similar in many ways. It allows anyone to meet up and exchange value. All Bitcoin transactions occur in a direct peer-to-peer process. Since there are no middlemen, regulators, or other parties involved, there is no-one to censor your right to spend your crypto as you choose.

Transparency

Bitcoin functions on a core protocol of transparency. Public blockchains allow everyone in the network to see every transaction in real-time. Not a single Bitcoin moves across the network without people having the ability to track it. This transparency allows Bitcoin to decouple from the other markets in the world. Bitcoin is the first truly decentralized market determined by supply and demand.

Privacy

While providing more transparency, Bitcoin is also able to provide more privacy. Bitcoin does away with account names and instead, you rely on two keys. The first key is your public key. This is the key that you give people to send you Bitcoin. The second key is your private key. This is how you can send Bitcoin. Never give this key to anyone. If you do, they can take all of your Bitcoin and you can do nothing about it.

How Does Bitcoin (BTC) Work

Bitcoin succeeded where previous virtual currencies failed because of the introduction of blockchain technology. A blockchain is a decentralized network of computers. This chain of computers leverages the entire computational power of the network to remain secure.

Bitcoin Trading - Analysis via CoinMarketCap

Bitcoin Trading – Analysis via CoinMarketCapBitcoin Trading – Analysis via CoinMarketCap

Bitcoin transactions get grouped into blocks. These are the blocks that create the chain of transactions, i.e. Blockchain. Blockchain currencies introduced a timestamp into their equation to make them unalterable. This timestamp is how Satoshi Nakamoto was able to defeat the age-old problem encountered by virtual currencies, double-spending.

Double Spend Quagmire

Previous attempts at virtual currencies came very close but ultimately failed because of the double-spend problem. The double-spend problem was how to stop hackers from spending a cryptocurrency twice during a transaction. In the material world, this isn’t a problem. Someone hands you the cash and they don’t have it and you do.

In the digital world, hackers can send you a virtual currency and while that transaction is processing, resend a similar transaction before the system recognizes the duplication. Nakamoto cleverly added a timestamp to each block of transactions. This timestamp is then used in the cryptographic code in the following block.

Mining Bitcoin (BTC)

Transactions on the Bitcoin blockchain receive approval from nodes, also known as “miners.” Once the block of transactions receives approval, it gets added to the chain of transactions to form the blockchain. Importantly, miners receive rewards for securing the network.

Originally, this reward was set at 50 Bitcoin. These rewards are set to half every 210,000 blocks. On average, this process takes around 4 years. In 2012 the first halfing occurred. It brought Bitcoin mining rewards down to 25 BTC. Then, in 2016 another one occurred. This left miners receiving 12.5BTC. The most recent halving was on 11 May 2020 and it took rewards down to 6.25BTC. Analysts predict at this rate, the final mining reward will occur sometime in 2140.

Why So Much Power

You often hear people complain that Bitcoin’s network is power-hungry. The reason that Bitcoin requires so much power has to do with its mining setup. In the Proof-of-Work (PoW) algorithm, only one miner can add the transaction to the blockchain. To determine what node gets this honor, every node competes to solve an advanced mathematical formula. This formula is known as the SHA-256 equation

SHA-256

SHA-256 is an extremely complex equation that requires computers to flex all their processing power. The equation is so difficult that it makes more sense for the computer to generate random guesses rather than attempt the equation directly. Notably, the answer to the equation must start with four zeros to be valid. It takes around 10 minutes for this process to complete.

Bitcoin Consensus Mechanism - SHA-256 - Blockchain Technology

Bitcoin Consensus Mechanism – SHA-256 – Blockchain Technology

Difficulty Adjustment

The more congestion on the Bitcoin network, the more difficult the equation becomes. This difficulty adjustment mechanism helps Bitcoin maintain its predictive monetary supply. Due to the introduction of high-end miners such as ASIC (Application Specific Integrated Circuits), Bitcoin mining difficulty has reached new heights. These chips are thousands of times faster than PCs at solving the SHA-256 equation. Keenly, the protocol will require more zeros at the beginning of the answer. This maneuver increases the difficulty of the equation.

Benefits of Bitcoin (BTC)

Bitcoin introduces some amazing benefits to the market. For one, Bitcoin is a safe ecosystem. Your transactions complete in a peer-to-peer fashion. The fewer intermediaries involved, the more cost-efficient and faster the transactions become. This is why Bitcoin is so much cheaper to send internationally than fiat currency.

You can send millions in Bitcoin in minutes and for a fraction of the cost of sending the same amount of value in fiat currency. Bitcoin streamlines international payments in a previously unimaginable way. Bitcoin remittance payment centers are a perfect example of how this cryptocurrency has helped benefit the world.

Bitcoin is not tied to any government and therefore is not beholden to any sanctions or other restrictions imposed on fiat currencies. People can spend their Bitcoin without politics in mind.  The decentralized nature of Bitcoin’s blockchain network makes it impossible for governments to shut down.

History of Bitcoin (BTC)

The official history of Bitcoin begins on August 18, 2008. That’s when Satoshi Nakamoto, Bitcoin’s anonymous creator registered the domain Bitcoin.org. Two months later, he published a link to his now-famous Bitcoin whitepaper. The paper was titled “Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System” in a Cypherpunk mailing list. The Cypherpunk community believes that privacy is crucial in today’s digital environment.

Bitcoin’s Genesis block was mined on January 3, 2009. This was the start of Bitcoin’s blockchain. As such, it’s also referred to as Block 0. Nakamoto also collected a reward of 50 Bitcoins for mining this first block. The same month the first open-source Bitcoin client entered the market via a post on SourceForge.

Early Transactions

In Bitcoin’s early days, the excitement was limited to just the virtual currency development sector. Notably, the well-known computer programmer, Hal Finney was the first person to receive a Bitcoin transaction. Hal had been in close contact with Nakamoto throughout the early days of Bitcoin. He received 10 Bitcoins from Nakamoto on January 12, 2009.

There are some other first supporters to the project that are still active today in the sector.  Wei Dai, the creator of Bitcoin predecessor b-money was a big part of these early days of testing. Also, Nick Szabo, the creator of another Bitcoin predecessor, Bitgold, was one of the first persons to take part in these decentralized transactions.

Nakamoto Mining and Disappearance

Nakamoto was very active in Bitcoin’s early days. He communicated often with the aforementioned developers and others in the space. He discussed his concept in various posts that are still up today.

During these days, he was actively made modifications and posted technical information on the Bitcoin forum as well. He also mined around 1 million Bitcoins according to expert studies. Then, without warning, he suddenly vanished. In his last post, he discusses some final changes he made to the “safe mode” feature and leaves a link to the builds.

Satoshi Nakamoto Last Forum Post via Bitcoin Forum

Satoshi Nakamoto Last Forum Post via Bitcoin Forum

He never states anything about leaving. However, in a post previous to the final one, he states that “It would have been nice to get this attention in any other context.  WikiLeaks has kicked the hornet’s nest, and the swarm is headed towards us.”  Ever since Nakamoto disappeared, developer Gavin Andresen has taken up the role of the lead developer at the Bitcoin Foundation.

Pizza Day

On May 22, 2010, a Bitcoin enthusiast by the name of Laszlo Hanyecz purchased two large Papa John’s Pizzas for 10,000 BTC. The transaction took place on the Bitcoin forums. In the posts, Hanyecz offers 10,000 BTC to whoever will pick up pizzas, pay for them, and deliver them to his house. Hilariously, he states he needs two pizza’s so he can “nibble” on some the next day.

A British man took up the offer and within the next hour, Hanyecz was munching on some delicious pizza and the delivery man was off with his 10,000 BTC. At the time, 10,000 BTC was only worth around $41. Today, these BTC are worth over $100,000,000.00.

Vulnerabilities Appear

In early August 2010, an attack vector became evident to the Bitcoin core developers. The coding error caused block verification issues to occur. Hackers could exploit these issues because they allowed users to bypass Bitcoin’s economic restrictions. In turn, a hacker could create an infinite number of Bitcoins.

Only a few days later, these risks became reality as 184 billion Bitcoins were generated in a single transaction. These newly minted coins were sent to two addresses on the network. Luckily, developers were already aware of the vulnerabilities. They choose to reverse the transactions and fork Bitcoin’s blockchain over to the updated secure version.

At the time, Bitcoin use was still exclusive to developers, so it wasn’t the issue it would be today. Critically, this was the only time that a Bitcoin transaction was reversed. No other security flaws have come to light since.

Crypto Market Emerges

The following year saw the introduction of other cryptocurrencies. This was the birth of the crypto market officially. Also, select firms began to accept Bitcoin as payment for services. The very first organization to do so was the Electronic Frontier Foundation. WikiLeaks was also among the first firms to accept Bitcoin donations.

In 2012, Bitcoin received its first cameo on a national television series. The cryptocurrency appeared on a CBS legal drama called The Good Wife.  This year also saw the Bitcoin Foundation launch. The founders of this group were Gavin Andresen, Jon Matonis, Patrick Murck, Charlie Shrem, and Peter Vessenes.

Their goal was to drive Bitcoin adoption to new heights. To accomplish this task, developers sought to push for more standardization, protection, and promotion of open-source protocols in the market. Today the Bitcoin Foundation still plays a vital role in Bitcoin’s expansion.

BitPay

In October of 2012, the popular Bitcoin Payment processor, BitPay celebrated a major milestone. The firm reached 1,000 merchants accepting Bitcoin. The same year, one of the largest hosting platforms in the world, WordPress started accepting Bitcoin payments. These developments would lead to an amazing next year for Bitcoin.

French President Emmanual Macron Showing Off A Ledger Bitcoin Hardware Wallet

French President Emmanual Macron Showing Off A Ledger Bitcoin Hardware Wallet

In 2013, Bitcoin made major strides. This was the year that the payment processor, Coinbase reported the successful sale of $1million BTC at an average of $22 per coin. It was also the year for Bitcoin’s first major market crash. In March, there was a massive sell-off as the Bitcoin community split for around six-hours.

Two Bitcoins

The technical mishap left the world with two separate Bitcoin blockchains for hours. The developers made the call to halt all transactions to figure out the problem. This caused investors to lose faith in the fledgling project. A selloff occurred with Bitcoin shedding value in minutes. Developers were able to stabilize the situation when they had all miners upgrade to version 0.7 as the new standard.

Bitcoin (BTC) Regulatory Concerns

This was also the year that regulators began to take notice of Bitcoin’s activities. Specifically, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) made a public statement in which it stated that miners selling their BTC rewards for fiat needed to register as Money Service Businesses or face consequences. This announcement caused a slight ripple through the market but it was just a drop in the bucket of what was to come.

In April, Bitcoin experienced a major crash unlike any it had before. The crash was brought on by increased processing delays experienced by the world’s largest exchange at the time, Mt.Gox, and the world’s premier Bitcoin payment processor, BitInstant. The crash saw Bitcoin prices free fall from $266 to $76.

Confiscations

This year was also the first time a government agency claimed to have seized Bitcoin. Specifically, the US Drug Enforcement Administration listed the seizure of 11.02 Bitcoins in a United States Department of Justice notice. At around the same time, authorities seized multiple accounts related to the Mt.Gox exchange.

Regulatory Concerns

Bitcoin went through some regulatory issues during this time as well. The Foreign Exchange Administration and Policy Department in Thailand made Bitcoin illegal in the country. Also, US Federal Judge Amos Mazzant of the Eastern District of Texas of the Fifth Circuit made a controversial ruling that Bitcoin is “a currency or a form of money.” Lastly, Germany’s Finance Ministry acknowledged the cryptocurrency as a financial instrument.

Silk Road

In October 2013, the FBI seized roughly 26,000 BTC from the website Silk Road. This was the largest Bitcoin seizure up until that time. The man behind the operation, Ross William Ulbricht, was found guilty of drug trafficking and sentenced to life in prison for his role in the creation of this decentralized marketplace. Many believe this sentence was too harsh and that he was charged as the dealers and not as the market place developer.

Ross William Ulbricht

Ross William Ulbricht

Bitcoin ATMs

Bitcoin ATMs began to pop up around the globe at this time also. Robocoin and Bitcoiniacs launched the world’s first Bitcoin ATM in October 2013. This historical ATM resides in Vancouver, Canada. The same month, the Chinese internet giant Baidu allowed clients of website security services to pay their invoices using Bitcoins. Also, BTC China overtook the Japan-based Mt. Gox as the largest Bitcoin trading exchange by trade volume in the world.

In December, executives from the popular online retailer Overstock.com announced plans to accept Bitcoin in the coming weeks. Shortly after, the market experienced another major loss. This one was brought on partly because the People’s Bank of China prohibited Chinese financial institutions from using Bitcoin. At the time, China controlled the majority of Bitcoin’s trading volume.

Bitcoin Comes to Vegas

In 2014, Bitcoin continued along its path to institutional adoption. This year saw both The D Las Vegas Casino Hotel and Golden Gate Hotel & Casino properties in downtown Las Vegas announced they would start accepting the cryptocurrency. This news helped bolster Bitcoin’s price. However, the boost was short-lived.

In February 2014, Bitcoin experienced the notorious Mt.Gox Hack occurred. The platform saw the loss of 744,000 Bitcoin during the attack. Less than a month later, the world’s largest Bitcoin exchange filed for bankruptcy. The market shed value following this revelation.

Major Achievement

In September, the market started to rebound. This was the month that the TeraExchange received approval from the CFTC to start offering various Bitcoin-based services. Specifically, the firm began to offer an over-the-counter swap product based on the price of a Bitcoin. This occurrence was a monumental achievement for the entire market because it was the first time a U.S. regulatory agency approved a Bitcoin financial product.

Bitcoin (BTC) Goes Mainstream

The year ended strong for Bitcoin as well. The computer giant, Microsoft began to accept Bitcoin from users in December. You can buy Xbox games and Windows software using Bitcoin. Also, the first Bitcoin documentary, The Rise and Rise of Bitcoin, was released.

By 2015 the Bitcoin market was starting to gain momentum. In January of that year, Coinbase raised $75 million in seed funding. That year also saw the popular exchange Bitstamp stop trading for a week due to a hack. According to company documents, the firm had 19,000 Bitcoins stolen during the incident. Impressively, the platform reopened and no users lost funds only days later.

New Heights

The following year saw Bitcoin’s network expand to new heights. The network reached a record network rate of over 1 exahash/sec. In March 2016, the Cabinet of Japan recognized virtual currencies as forms of payment. This helped to push market value and development in the region. Sadly, in August 2016, another major Bitcoin exchange, Bitfinex, was hacked and around 120,000 BTC were lost.

Bitcoin is Recognized in Japan

2017 saw Japan pass more Bitcoin-friendly legislation. In this go-around, Bitcoin was officially recognized as a legal payment method. This stance helped to push trading volumes to new heights. The market exploded. For example, between January and May 2017, the exchange Poloniex reported an increase of more than 600% active traders on its platform.

Scalability Concerns

These record highs led to more investors entering the market. All of these users created an enormous amount of congestion on the network. Soon, Bitcoin transactions were costing more and taking much longer to complete. The problem reached a boiling point when the Bitcoin community split over how to handle the problems. In the end, a new cryptocurrency named Bitcoin Cash emerged.

Bitcoin Congestion via WooBull

Bitcoin Congestion via WooBull

In 2018, South Korea took major action against Bitcoin when it banned anonymous transactions. This year also saw the off-chain payment solution, the Lightning Network take flight. The Lightning Network relies on private payment channels to prevent Bitcoin market congestion.

Bitcoin Banking

Bitcoin banking solutions began to enter the market as well this year. This time is when the emergence of Bitcoin debit cards and bank accounts began to gain popularity. Also, Bitcoin ATMs started to spring up in more locations as their prices dropped significantly and more manufacturers entered the sector.

By 2019, Bitcoin was already a household name. There were thousands of cryptocurrencies and the market was expanding. Additionally, this is the time that other major crypto projects began to spoke regulators. Specifically, Facebook’s Libra coin had regulators on edge.

This year, Bitcoin began to mature. You can do nearly anything with Bitcoin nowadays. You can pay taxes, travel, or even by food or gift cards. Additionally, the expansion of the DeFi sector has provided Bitcoin users with even more options in terms of Bitcoin storage and passive income streams.

Who Invented Bitcoin (BTC)?

While the name behind the Bitcoin whitepaper states Satoshi Nakamoto, there has been no one to step forward and prove they are indeed Bitcoin’s creator. Numerous individuals have stated they were Nakamoto, but no one has yet been able to move any of those original 1 million BTC mined by the developer in its early days. This lack of substantial evidence has led conspiracy theories to run a rift.

In one particular instance, a computer programmer and early Bitcoiner by the name of Craig Wright came forward claiming that he was Nakamoto. He even attempted to file a Copywrite on the Bitcoin name. However, when it came time to prove he was Nakamoto, he was unable to provide any evidence that linked him to those unmoved million BTCs.

There have also been instances where someone was mistaken for Nakamoto. Newsweek took a man’s life through the ringers after it incorrectly published that he was the creator of Bitcoin. This man, Dorian Nakamoto denied having anything to do with the project. Today, his face stands as a symbolic image representing Satoshi Nakamoto.

How to Buy Bitcoin (BTC)

You can get Bitcoin at any exchange. Binance offers direct Bitcoin fiat currency pairs. You just need to register for an account. Once your account is valid, you can load it with fiat currency. Luckily, Binance just added instant account loading this month. It used to take three days to load.

Once your fiat currency is on the exchange, you can simply select the BTC/USD trading pair and you are good to go. The entire process only takes a minute and is very straight forward. Notably, Binance is the world’s largest exchange.

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How to Store Bitcoin (BTC)

Storing your Bitcoin is easy. There are more options available to Bitcoin investors than ever thanks to the popularity of this coin. The easiest way to store BTC is on a mobile app. Mobile apps are easy to navigate and can be downloaded in seconds. Best of all, most are free to use.

Mobile BTC wallets such as JAXX have come a long way since the early days of the market. Today’s wallets are easy to use and can store a multitude of different cryptocurrencies. These platforms make it easy for you to diversify your investments and keep track of your portfolio.

Desktop

If you want a more secure option than a mobile wallet, you can always go with the Bitcoin desktop client. The desktop wallet is more secure because your computer is usually more secure than your Smartphone. Additionally, since the desktop wallet was developed by the core developers of the project, you know it’s a safer option to consider.

For those of you that intend to HODL large amounts of Bitcoin, or for anyone who believes security is the primary investment concern, a hardware wallet is the best move. Hardware wallets keep Bitcoin stored safely offline. This strategy keeps your crypt away from hackers and other malicious codes.

Hardware Wallet

Companies such as Ledger offer hardware wallets at affordable rates. These devices are small enough to store anywhere or bring with you. Many provide you with some advanced features such as the ability to connect your wallet directly to exchanges.

We recommend either the Ledger Nano X or the Trezor Model T.

The Future of Bitcoin

Bitcoin’s future looks bright. The world now recognizes the power of blockchain technology. Bitcoin continues to expand both its user base and functionalities. Analysts agree that it’s only a matter of time before Bitcoin becomes the world’s premier reserve currency.

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Investing In Kava – Everything You Need to Know

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What is Kava?

Kava is a next-generation decentralized lending platform that seeks to bring new flexibility to the market. The network is known for its cross-chain capabilities and unique lending strategy. Today, the platform offers a range of products with its two main being collateralized loans and stablecoins. To date, Kava has paid out $1,129,883.32 in interest payments to its users.

What Problems Does Kava Attempt to Fix?

Kava developers seek to streamline the decentralized lending sector via the integration of a variety of proprietary technologies. Developers specifically developed the system to provide stablecoins and decentralized lending against all major crypto assets in a more transparent and simplistic manner. Consequently, Kava is a pioneer in the DeFi sector that continues to draw international media attention.

How Kava Works

Users of the network can collateralize their crypto assets in exchange for USDX. USDX functions as Kava’s stablecoin in the network. To receive USDX loans, users just need to lock up their crypto in a smart contract on the platform. This locked up cryptocurrency serves as collateral against your loan.

Investing in KAVA

Users may take out multiple collateralized loans to create synthetic leverage for any supported crypto asset in the system. For example, you could choose to lock up your Bitcoin or XRP using the protocol. You would receive an equivalent amount of newly minted USDX to purchase more Bitcoin with. In this way, you gain a leveraged position in the market.

Kava also encompasses a wide variety of community-built applications. Each of these Dapps adds to the overall UX of the platform. This interoperability allows you to store your assets using a variety of hardware wallets and institutional-grade custodians. This flexibility is one of the main draws to Kava versus the competition.

Decentralized Loans and Leverage

The main product of the Kava platform is decentralized loans. All Kava users gain open access to loans, leverage, and stablecoins for hedging. In this way, Kava acts as a powerful tool for investors in the market.

Stablecoin Hedging + Interest:

Another unique feature of Kava is its stablecoin’s capabilities. You can stake and bond USDX stablecoin to start yielding a healthy passive income.

Expansion

Kava features a unique open architecture that enables future growth. The platform will support a wide range of new crypto assets and offerings in the coming months. These new synthetics and derivative products will push Kava adoption to new heights.

Dual Tokens

Kava utilizes a dual token strategy to ensure that each user gains the maximum flexibility and usability possible. Dual token platforms are more common than ever in the market. This strategy allows developers and users to maximize their functionality without detracting from either sector. The two coins that are critical to Kava are USDX and KAVA.

KAVA Tokens

KAVA is the native token for this blockchain. This coin functions as the governance token within the ecosystem. Users need these tokens to vote on critical parameters. These votes are what guide the network’s upgrades. They are also used for proposals and voting on specific parameters of the collateralized debt position (CDP) system.

Security

This crypto also plays an integral part in maintaining the network’s security. Users stake KAVA to accomplish this task. Notably, only the top 100 nodes in the network validate blocks in this system. The top token holders are determined using an algorithm that examines each user’s weighted bonded stake in KAVA tokens. For their effort, stakers earn crypto as block rewards.

Staking Asset

Stakers in the network hold a couple of responsibilities as well. Aside from securing the blockchain, these users can further stake their holdings utilizing bonding curves of network validators.  Malicious nodes can lose their Kava. Actions such as failing to ensure high uptime and double signing transactions are sure to get you removed from this network. Kava is known for its zero-tolerance of malicious nodes.

Last Resort Lender

KAVA can also function as a reserve currency for the network. If USDX becomes over collateralized, the network will mint new KAVA to utilize in the purchase of USDX. This allows Kava to ensure its stablecoin retains its value.

USDX- Kava

USDX is the stablecoin for the Kava network. This financial instrument is what you receive and pay back your loans in. It also functions as a general payment system. USDX features fast transaction times making it an ideal stablecoin for payroll and other corporate-related payment processes.

Margin trading/leverage

Kava users will also utilize USDX to purchase additional crypto assets on the platform. This strategy permits skilled investors to effectively leveraging their exposure in new ways.

Hedging with Interest

You can also hold USDX as a stable asset. In this way, USDX functions as a safe haven during times of market volatility. Keenly, when USDX holders bond their tokens, they receive accumulate interest equal to the current USDX savings rate.

COSMOS Blockchain

Kava resides on the futuristic Cosmos blockchain. Cosmos is a fourth-generation blockchain that seeks to help categorize and leverage the growing number of blockchains in the market. Specifically, the platform was built using Cosmos-SDK. This protocol is an open-source framework for building public Proof-of-Stake blockchains. Cosmos has a native token called ATOM.

Consensus

Kava operates with a Tendermint-based Proof-of-Stake (PoS) consensus mechanism. This upgraded PoS consensus mechanism utilizes a Byzantine Fault Tolerant consensus engine. Impressively, this mechanism is far more energy-efficient than early blockchains such as Bitcoin or Ethereum. In many ways, the network is similar to MakerDAO with the integration of CDPs. However, Kava better leverages the zones from Cosmos to add access to cryptocurrencies running on independent networks

KAVA Statistics

KAVA Statistics

Modularity

Cosmos is best known for its use of open-source modules. These protocols allow developers to quickly implement desirable functionalities into their Dapps. For example, Kava utilizes the Inter Blockchain Communication (IBC) module to provide the platform with the ability to communicate to all Cosmos-SDK blockchains.

Modules Used in Kava Ecosystem

There are four main modules in use within the Kava ecosystem. These modules help the network to function properly and provide users access to some unique financial tools.

Price-feed Module

The first module integrated into this network is a price feed mechanism. This module is a simple price oracle. Oracles are off-chain sensors that can provide data to blockchains. A group of white-listed oracles posts prices for various assets in the system. The protocol then determines the median price of all valid oracle prices. This data also determines the current price in the system.

Auction Module

The Auction Module allows users to utilize three types of auction protocols. The first option is the forward auction. This is a traditional auction where the buyer will solicit raising bids for an item. This strategy is employed whenever the platform sees a surplus in collected fees. This mechanism allows the system to convert the surplus into more stablecoins.

The next type of auction the network allows is reverse auctions. As the name implies, this auction consists of decreasing bids for a particular item or lot of items. Primarily, this protocol functions to sell governance tokens in order to mint new stable coins. This strategy is used to make up the difference between failed collateral auctions and debts.

CDP (Collateralized Debt Position) Module

The CDP module serves a critical function. It allows users to create, modify, and close CDPs for any collateral type. Additionally, this is the coding used to set the global parameters of the system. These settings cover items such as debt limits and the total circulation of stablecoins in the market.

Liquidator Module

The Liquidator Module is the repo man in the network. This is the protocol that is responsible for seizing collateral from CDPs whose collateralization ratio is below the threshold set for that collateral type. This module automatically tracks the status of CDPs to make determinations. The final decision of the module is based on prices received from the Price-feed module.

Seized Collateral

Any collateral that is seized by the liquidator module goes to the Auction module. Here, the collateral auctions for stablecoins using a forward-reverse auction. The goal of this process is to wipe out the debt held initially plus the addition of a small repo fee.

How to Buy Kava

There are a lot of platforms that offer KAVA currently. Binance currently shows the most trading volume. You will need to first register for these platforms to participate in trades. Once you are all set up, you just need to fund your account. Once you have Bitcoin in your wallet, you can simply go to the KAVA/BTC trading pair and select the amount you wish to trade. The entire process is quick and painless.

Fees

0.1%

Per Trade

Fees

0.09%

Per Trade

Fees

0.1%

Per Trade

Account Minimum

None

Account Minimums

None

Account Minimums

None

Promotions

10% Cashback

Discount Code: EE59L0QP

Promotions

None

Promotions

Free Airdrops

Exclusive to Securities.io

How to Store Kava

You have three options to consider when storing Kava. The first is a PC-based network wallet. You can download the Kava application for free. It’s secure and easy-to-use. There is also a multitude of mobile wallet options available. Make sure your mobile wallet supports staking rewards such as the JAXX wallet available on iOS and Android.

For serious investors, a hardware wallet is the best move. The Ledger Nano S is one of the most popular hardware wallets in the world and it allows users to earn their staking rewards. Hardware wallets are safer than other options because your crypto remains offline. This method of storage also goes by the name “cold storage.”

Kava – More Opportunity for Rewards

The latest DeFi craze has made the crypto sector even more profitable than initially imagined. Regular users are earning hefty rewards via these platforms. Protocols such as Kava make it possible for anyone to enjoy a reliable passive income. For these reasons, Kava is sure to be a major contender in the DeFi sector moving forward.

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Cryptocurrency

Investing in NEO – Everything You Need to Know

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NEO is one of the top cryptocurrencies in the world. This coin managed to capture the imagination of the Asian markets, even during times of regulatory uncertainty. Today, the NEO ecosystem is more vibrant than ever thanks to the hard work of developers and participation from the community.

What is NEO?

NEO is a non-profit community-based blockchain project that entered the market to provide Dapp developers with an easy-to-utilize platform. Specifically, NEO is an open-source blockchain and cryptocurrency. According to the company’s whitepaper, NEO functions as a “distributed network for the smart economy.” Notably, NEO translates to new and young in Greek. The name is appropriate when you consider that the platform is seen by many as a newer and younger version of Ethereum.

NEO- Twitter

NEO- Twitter

Chinese Support

NEO was China’s first blockchain project to receive a nod of approval from regulators. Interestingly, the Chinese government has embraced the project, even after shuttering exchanges in the country. The firm is one of only a select few cryptocurrencies allowed to operate in China at this time. This support and the nationalistic feeling behind the project have led many to call the project “Chinese Ethereum.”

What Problems Does NEO Correct

NEO seeks to tackle a multitude of issues facing the market. Primarily, NEO is meant to act as a more flexible alternative to Ethereum. The company utilizes a philosophy that evaluates design choices on a multivariate spectrum. In this way, Neo can adjust its market approach accordingly.

For example, NEO developers can decide based on each particular use case what level of decentralization/centralization is most appropriate for a project. They can also make similar judgments on other important issues such as the level of on-chain/off-chain governance. These options provide NEO with more use case scenarios for large scale adoption in both the commercial and governmental sectors

How NEO Works

The NEO blockchain can accommodate a wide variety of digital assets. For example, the network features full support for blockchain assets, digital identity, and smart contracts. The platform can support decentralized apps (dApp) of all types, tokenization of real-world assets, and initial coin offerings.

Two Heads

NEO is a public platform that also leverages the Onchain network to create an optimal governance scenario. The interoperability of the networks extends the platform’s reach to new heights. It also combines these project’s communities to leverage developments across the network.

Onchain

Onchain was founded in 2014 in China. This private blockchain company is best known for its focus on government and large enterprises. The platform is well-known for its Decentralized Network Architecture (DNA) tech. This protocol simplifies the creation of public and private blockchains.

Two-Tokens

NEO utilizes a two-tiered system to provide the network with more flexibility for users and developers. The ecosystem relies on both NEO and GAS tokens. In total, the firm will issue 100 million of each token. There are currently 70,538,831 NEO in circulation.

NEO Tokens

NEO is the cryptocurrency of the NEO blockchain. This crypto represents a share of ownership in the NEO blockchain. This crypto also plays a role in governance. It allows the community to create blocks and manage the network. Interestingly, NEO has indivisible units and cannot be divided like other coins such as Ethereum. The reasoning behind this decision is that each coin is meant to act as a single share in the NEO blockchain. Just like stocks, these coins cannot break down into smaller units.

NEO - CoinMarketCap

NEO – CoinMarketCap

Gas Tokens

GAS is the utility token for the NEO network. This token was formerly known as ANC- Antcoins. In the ecosystem, GAS functions like Ether in the Ethereum network. Developers use GAS for transactions in the network. Additionally, users receive rewards in GAS tokens.

GAS generates at a rate of eight GAS per block. The network automatically reduces the number of rewards per block after two million confirmed blocks. Users have options with GAS. You can trade GAS for other cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, Litecoin, or Ethereum. You can also convert your GAS to NEO directly. In this way, GAS  pricing remains decoupled.

Coding Smart Contracts

NEO provides developers access to a powerful virtual machine that simplifies the most critical components of smart contract programming. For example, developers don’t need to learn a new coding language to use the platform. The network allows smart contracts in C#, Java, Python, plus a wide variety of other coding languages. In this way, the network can accommodate developers from across the industry.

Consensus

NEO introduces the world to the Delegated Byzantine Fault Tolerance (dBFT) consensus mechanism. In this mechanism, there are certain nodes known as Bookkeepers. These digital accountants do the actual block verifications. The data is broadcast on the blockchain. Only when two-thirds of the nodes on the network agree with a bookkeeper’s version of the blockchain is consensus achieved.

Delegated Byzantine Fault Tolerance (dBFT) - vtce

Delegated Byzantine Fault Tolerance (dBFT) – vtce

Faster Throughput

The dBFT consensus mechanism is fast, really fast. It can handle more than 1,000 transactions per second. In comparison, Bitcoin handles around six transactions per second (tps). Ethereum can handle a whopping 12 tps. Impressively, NEO seeks to push its tps rate to new heights with their next upgraded. The goal of the update is to take the network to an insane 10,000 transactions per second.

Governance Upgrade

In May 2020 the developers behind NEO proposed a major upgrade to the network. The upgrade would introduce a new governance model. The new strategy enables coin holders to vote for a committee of 21 governing members. These members hold the responsibility of representing the community. They gain the ability to vote on various modifiable parameters of the blockchain and other changes to the network’s coding.

The proposal suggests that people that vote for these members receive extra GAS rewards. This reward is a means of thanking members for their participation in the governance process. The proposal states that out of the 21 chosen governing members, seven will also become consensus nodes.

As a consensus node, their responsibilities will extend to validating blocks. Additionally, these seven members gain veto powers. To make a veto decision, the consensus nodes must obtain two-thirds support from the community.

History of NEO

NEO entered the market as Antshares back in February 2014. This firm is the brainchild of two longtime blockchain enthusiasts, Erik Zhang and Da Hongfei. During this time, the actual cryptocurrency went under Antshares (ANS). In 2014, the two developers expanded their vision with the creation of Onchain.

In April 2016, NEO releases its whitepaper officially. The paper highlighted the benefits and technical aspects of the delegated Byzantine Fault Tolerance. At the time, this was the first Chinese born consensus mechanism. As such, it received heavy media coverage in the region.

In August 2016, NEO entered the market via an ICO. The event was a major success with the project securing over $4.5 million in funding. These funds went to the further expansion of NEO’s strategy in the region. In September of the same year, Onchain established a Technology Strategic Partnership with Microsoft. The agreement inked cooperation on multiple projects.

In June 2017, Antshares rebranded to NEO officially. The crypto also received its first US-based support this year. Specifically, the coin saw a listing on Bittrex. The next year, the digital ID platform VALID announced a strategic partnership with the firm.

NEO3

This year saw the announcement of a major upgrade. The NEO3 upgrade is set to be the company’s largest to date. In addition to the introduction of the new governance models, the upgrade will bring more interoperability into the sector. Specifically, the platform will gain more cross-chain capabilities. Currently, developers are experimenting with these protocols. They have set up Testnets with Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Ontology.

Tokenization

The upgrade will also simplify the tokenization process. Specifically, developers want to make it easier to create and issue Non-fungible tokens. Non-fungible tokens are unique digital representations of an asset. Some examples of non-fungible tokens include the tokenization of:

  • Security Tokens
  • Stocks
  • REITs
  • Art
  • Cars
  • Event Tickets
  • Other Physical Assets

How to Buy NEO

NEO is not hard to find in the market. Most major exchanges have NEO/Bitcoin trading pairs. To utilize these platforms you will just need to register for an account. Once your account is live, load it with fiat currency or Bitcoin directly. From there, you just need to locate the NEO/BTC trading pair. The entire process is quick and easy once you complete your registration.

Fees

0.1%

Per Trade

Fees

0.09%

Per Trade

Fees

0.1%

Per Trade

Account Minimum

None

Account Minimums

None

Account Minimums

None

Promotions

10% Cashback

Discount Code: EE59L0QP

Promotions

None

Promotions

Free Airdrops

Exclusive to Securities.io

How to Store NEO

There are a few ways to store your NEO. The important thing to remember is that you only want to store your crypto in a wallet that allows you to earn your GAS rewards. The NEON wallet is one of the best options for investors seeking to earn their rewards.

Impressively, you can also earn GAS rewards using a hardware wallet. The Ledger Nano S is able to connect to your NEON wallet directly. You can then send, receive, and get your rewards from one safe wallet platform Notably, NEON is not the core wallet for the network but it has received unmatched community support and has the blessings of the developers.

Summary

Given NEO’s unique stance in the Asian markets, it’s hard to imagine anything but success for this platform. These developers continually upgrade the network with NEO3 set to release in the coming months. For now, NEO shares a top spot in the crypto market as one of the premier Dapp development platforms available.

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This risk is  higher with Cryptocurrencies due to markets being decentralized and non-regulated. You should be aware that you may lose a significant portion of your portfolio.

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