SEC: Bitcoin Community Prone to Scamming
The Security Exchange Commission has some rather unflattering things to say about the Bitcoin community. In short, the regulatory commission believes that the Bitcoin system and Bitcoin users themselves are ripe for scammers. As the commission states, new technologies are prone to fraud and high risk investments that turn sour. Given the numerous Bitcoin scandals that have broken out, the regulatory agency would appear to have a point. Regardless, as the Bitcoin community continues to strengthen itself, it should become less vulnerable to such attacks.
China’s Central Bank Issues Another Warning
Only a few short months ago it appeared that China was ready to embrace Bitcoin. Prices were skyrocketing, the government offered occasional support in the form of tepid remarks, Bitcoin companies were sprouting up like daisies. Then December came. Fast forward a few months and it is nothing but warnings. The Chinese Central Bank has yet again warned banks, saying that those who failed to follow new guidelines will be publicly censored. Banks will now be required to set up special groups to monitor Bitcoin related transactions. Meanwhile, major Bitcoin exchanges have (temporarily?) suspended yuan deposits.
Bitcoin Startup Gets $4 Million in Venture Capital
Imagine what people would have thought three years ago if a venture capitalist invested $4 million dollars into a Bitcoin company. Most likely, that venture capitalist would have been getting his or her pants sued off by investors. Now-a-days? Doesn’t even raise an eyebrow. Startup Vaurum just got a cool $4 million cash injection from Battery Ventures. So what is Vaurum into? The company is building software that will allow traditional banks and financial institutions to host their own Bitcoin exchanges. If Bitcoin does move into the mainstream, interest from banks could skyrocket, so this could turn out to be an uber-profitable product.
DoD Looking at Bitcoin as Potential Terrorist Threat
The Department of Defense is looking into Bitcoin to see if it posses a possible terrorist threat. Of course, given that the DoD looks at just about everything as a possible terrorist threat, this should come as no surprise. A Pentagon team labeled the “Combating Terrorism Technical Support Office” has stated that virtual currencies like Bitcoin could make the global financial system more opaque. This, in turn, will make it easier and more efficient to launch terrorist attacks.
Bitcoin Paychecks? Some Companies Looking to Pay Employees in Bitcoin
Forget stock options, traditional paper paychecks, and direct deposits. That’s the paycheck of yesterday, or at least some companies are trying to place those payments in the trash heap of history. Some Bitcoin companies are now looking to pay their employees in Bitcoin. This could raise some serious issues, however, as Bitcoin is not a legally recognized currency in most countries. At the same time, Bitcoin is rather tricky from the taxation point of view and prices can swing wildly.