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BMW, General Motors, Ford to Start Testing Blockchain Payments in Cars

Tests of a blockchain car identification and payment system deployed by automakers Renault, BMW, General Motors, Ford and Honda will start next month. Five major automakers — BMW, General Motors, Ford, Renault and Honda — will start testing a blockchain car identification and payment system next month in the United States. Automakers envision self-paying cars, digital IDsNikkei Asian Review reported on Oct. 14 that the partnership aims to test the vehicle ID system developed under the Mobility Open Blockchain Initiative. As part of the project, cars are assigned digital IDs linked to ownership, service history and a wallet allowing the vehicle to automatically pay fees without specialized hardware. The alliance reportedly envisions the system being applied to connected electric vehicles so tolls, maintenance and rest stop purchases, for example, can be recorded and paid automatically when the car is plugged in to charge its battery. Mercedes also testing blockchain transactions in car..

BlackRock, Goldman Sachs Veteran Joins Blockchain as General Counsel

After serving over 25 years at two of the world’s largest financial institutions, Howard Surloff joins Blockchain.com as general counsel. BlackRock and Goldman Sachs veteran Howard Surloff has joined major crypto wallet provider Blockchain.com as general counsel. Over 25 years in traditional financeAfter serving over 25 years the two of the world’s largest and most respected financial institutions, Surloff will now be responsible for advancing Blockchain’s standard for legal, compliance and corporate governance within the crypto industry, the firm announced on Oct. 1. Prior to entering the crypto industry, Surloff worked at BlackRock for 12 years, the world’s largest exchange-traded fund provider, according to his LinkedIn page. At BlackRock, Surloff was long-serving Deputy General Counsel before he was appointed as Global Chief Operating Officer of BlackRock’s iShares and Index business, with over $4.4 trillion in assets and 800 employees globally, the report notes. Before joining Bl..

Bitfinex-NY Attorney General Case: Injunction Extended — What’s Next?

Good or bad sign? The New York attorney general’s injunction against Bitfinex has been extended. The saga continues. Despite everything that's been said about Tether and Bitfinex, defying all the scrutiny and suspicion, they continue to survive as a controversial pillar of the global crypto ecosystem. And in their ongoing legal battle with the New York State Office of the Attorney General (OAG), they continue to fight against the attempt to sue them and their parent company, iFinex. Against all the odds, they're doing a good job of holding their ground. This was underlined most clearly at the end of July, when Justice Joel M. Cohen of the New York Supreme Court (NYSC) ruled to extend the attorney general's preliminary injunction against iFinex and its subsidiaries. This was to provide the OAG with more time to investigate its case but also to provide the judge himself with more time to decide whether to accept or reject iFinex's appeal to have the case dismissed, b..

Japanese General Trading Company Backs Blockchain Platform for Wind, Solar

Marubeni Corp., a major Japanese general trading company, is backing Lithuania-based blockchain energy project WePower. Marubeni Corp., a major Japanese sōgō shōsha, or general trading company, is now backing a blockchain-based power trading platform. Per a report by Reuters on July 23, Marubeni has issued a loan to Lithuania-based blockchain project WePower. Per Reuters, the size of Marubeni’s stake in WePower after converting the loan is yet to be determined. WePower has reportedly developed a platform which allows small- and medium-sized enterprises to more easily buy power specifically from wind- and solar-based sources via standardized digital power purchase agreements. The platform aims to unlock tens of billions of dollars in power generation to smaller projects in the Australian electricity market which, according to Reuters, is running out of major power consumers that will buy large quantities over long periods of time. The blockchain-based platform purportedly allows for f..

Tether’s Trouble With New York Attorney General — Will Crypto Cope?

Tether vs. New York: Regardless of who wins or loses, crypto will keep growing. Are Bitfinex and Tether in trouble? Maybe, but the thing is, we don't know just how much trouble, because the stablecoin issuer has challenged the New York State Office of the Attorney General's (OAG) case against them. In claims filed in April, Attorney General Letitia James asserted that Bitfinex defrauded its customers, having lost $850 million in client and corporate funds, and then having attempted to cover up this loss by secretly helping itself to around $900 million of Tether's cash reserves. Serious charges, but they're denied by Bitfinex and Tether’s parent company, iFinex, which responded in April that the OAG's claims were "riddled with false assertions" and that the lost $850 million is being safeguarded, although it didn't specify whether this amount is being held by Crypto Capital Corp. (which initially received it) or by some other entity. Regardless, iFinex h..

New York Attorney General Fights Dismissal Motion in Bitfinex, Tether Case

The office of the New York Attorney General has filed a memorandum arguing that its case against Bitfinex and Tether should proceed. The office of the New York Attorney General (OAG) has claimed that crypto exchange Bitfinex and stablecoin firm Tether have been operating in New York into 2019, according to official documents filed in the New York State Courts on June 8. The OAG has submitted these documents to fight Bitfinex and Tether’s motion to dismiss the case, a motion filed in May. The defendants argued that the case should be thrown out because they were not operating their businesses in New York. They noted that the OAG had appealed to the Martin Act in bringing their case against the defendants, which is a securities and commodities law specific to New York State. In yesterdays string of filings, the OAG submitted almost 30 documents that allegedly demonstrate that the defendants have, in fact, been operating in New York. In an affirmation against the case dismissal, Assistan..

Square Rolls Out Bitcoin Deposits for Cash App to General Public

Square has just made bitcoin deposits available to the general public on its Cash App. San Francisco-based payments company Square has just made bitcoin (BTC) deposits available on its Cash App on June 26 Cash App users will now be able to deposit bitcoins from external wallets into their app bitcoin address. According to Square’s announcement, deposits are limited to $10,000 worth of bitcoin in a seven day period. It also notes that transfers could take several hours to be confirmed on the blockchain. As noted by Coindesk, Square apparently made bitcoin deposits previously available for some users. Twitter user and self-proclaimed “Bitcoin Permabull” Dennis Parker recently claimed on June 25 that BTC deposits were available, and podcaster Marty Bent posted what appears to be a screenshot of the deposit service back on June 18. As previously reported by Cointelegraph, Square’s founder Jack Dorsey, who is also the creator of social media giant Twitter, has been putting together a team..

General Motors Leads $23M Funding Round for Spring Labs Blockchain Firm

Blockchain startup Spring Labs recently raised $23 million in Seed A funding round, says funds will go towards security products built on its Spring Protocol blockchain platform. United States-based blockchain startup Spring Labs has raised $23 million in a Seed A funding round, according to a press release on June 12. Spring Labs will purportedly use the funds to improve its blockchain-based platform Spring Protocol and develop three new fraud protection products that are designed to combat fraud in the auto financing sector. According to the press release, the new products are Spring Verify, Spring Defense, and Spring Protect, which are designed for identity verification, fraud monitoring/mitigation, and loan stacking prevention, respectively. The products will purportedly provide information to lenders anonymously, for the purpose of financing activities such as unsecured consumer lending, small business lending, credit card issuance, and secured auto lending. According to the repo..

Legal & General Partners With Amazon to Use Blockchain for Pension...

Amazon partners with insurance agency Legal & General to make a bulk annuities transactions using blockchain technology Online retail giant Amazon has partnered with United Kingdom-based insurance agency Legal & General to create a blockchain system for managing corporate pension deals, according to a report by Reuters on June 11. Legal & General will reportedly make use of the Amazon Managed Blockchain for its bulk annuity transactions, which happen when companies transfer their pension schemes to Legal & General for insurance. According to an article by the Financial Times, companies make bulk annuity transactions to insurers like this so that they are not ultimately responsible for personally paying their employees’ pensions. CEO of Legal & General Reinsurance Thomas Olunloyo commented on how a blockchain solution is fitting given the longevity of annuities: “... it allows data and transactions to be signed, recorded and maintained in a permanent and secure nature over the lifetime..

Belarus General Prosecutor Warns About Cryptocurrency’s Use in Tax Evasion

Aleksandr Konyuk said cybercrime was impacting peoples’ everyday lives and jurisdictions should study areas such as crypto as a result. Belarus’ general prosecutor has raised concerns about the role cryptocurrency could be playing in tax evasion, local daily news outlet TUT.by reported on June 4. Speaking as Belarus hosted the International Prosecutors Association’s regional conference, Aleksandr Konyuk said the time had come for all attendants’ authorities to study cryptocurrency use. Belarus had become one of the first countries in the area to create formal legislation around bitcoin (BTC) and other cryptocurrencies, declaring them legal in 2017. “The relevance of cybercrime is obvious,” he told the conference, which saw representation from Russia, Georgia, Moldova, Poland, Kazakhstan and Latvia. Konyuk continued: “Multiple new understandings have emerged, and it is necessary to study the situation with bitcoin and cryptocurrency. These are things that are entering our lives. For ex..
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