Morning News: G20’s Crypto Wishlist, Coincheck Hack Celeb Refunded
Report: G20 to Call for More Crypto Monitoring Celebrity Who Lost Everything in Coincheck Hack Gets Full Refund S Korean District Court Makes Potentially Game-changing Crypto Ruling Bithumb Launches New Advertising Offensive
Catch up on the most essential cryptocurrency and blockchain news stories breaking in Asia and the Americas while the rest of the world was asleep.
Report: G20 to Call for More Crypto Monitoring
News agency Reuters says it has seen a draft G20 communiqué ahead of March 19-20’s crunch meeting of the world’s leading finance ministers in Buenos Aires. Participants are expected to say that cryptocurrencies pose tax evasion risks, and speak of how they have been used in money laundering and terrorist financing schemes. Per the communiqué, the ministers will also discuss potential financial stability issues surrounding crypto. Ministers may also agree that international standard-setting bodies should monitor and potentially intervene in crypto trading matters. When finance ministers and central bank governors of the world’s 20 biggest economies sit down and discuss matters relating to cryptocurrencies, you can expect a quite negative mood, as reported by Cryptonews.com.
Celebrity Who Lost Everything in Coincheck Hack Gets Full Refund
Japanese celebrity Toki, one half of comedy duo Fujisaki Market, says he has received a full yen refund from beleaguered cryptocurrency exchange Coincheck. The comedian had invested his life savings in the NEM cryptocurrency, stored in a Coincheck account, and lost the lot when hackers made off with USD 400 million in NEM in January this year. He became the poster child for disaffected Japanese crypto investors everywhere when, in the wake of the attack, he posted an Instagram picture of himself lying face down on the floor of his apartment saying he could not sleep and was about to drink himself into a stupor. However, Toki’s latest Tweet has lightened the mood among angry investors. The comedian wrote, “My NEM’s been returned, I converted it to yen. It all came back when I was asleep! It’s amazing!”
S Korean District Court Makes Potentially Game-changing Crypto Ruling
A district court in the South Korean city of Suwon has made a potentially significant ruling that may affect the legal status of cryptocurrencies in the country. Per media outlet Law Times, the court heard that a man charged with posting banner ads for illegal pornography and gambling sites had accrued his earnings in bitcoin (totaling 216 BTC). The defense argued that as the government does not consider cryptocurrency holdings to be financial assets, the accused was not obliged to hand over his earnings. However, the prosecution successfully argued that the court should recognize digital assets and retain the right to seize them. The court said that as in-game currencies used to trade items in online games were subject to VAT law in South Korea, bitcoin holdings should also be legally recognized. The judge also cited the case of a New York district court’s seizure of 144,000 BTC in a similar case. The ramifications are diverse for South Korea, whose government has, until recently maintained that cryptocurrencies have no monetary value or legal status.
Bithumb Launches New Advertising Offensive
South Korean cryptocurrency exchange platform Bithumb has had an action-packed week. Fresh from a slew of new product launches, the platform has now launched a new advertising campaign. The company says its campaign, which consists of three video advertisements and a brochure, is aimed at “boosting security” among users and “creating a safe trading environment.” The new ads warn against the dangers of voice phishing and hacking, and remind users to change their passwords regularly, delete suspicious emails and enable one-time password (OTP) authentication. The company says it will continue to “invest” in developing its role as a “model cryptocurrency exchange.” Analysts say the move represents a tentative testing of the waters for crypto exchanges as Seoul begins to slowly relax its stance toward cryptocurrency trading.