American FTC Tackles Pyramid Schemes
The US Federal Trade Commission has taken action against two businesses accusing them of running cryptocurrency pyramid schemes. The two companies are Bitcoin Funding Team and My7Network who both allegedly pay clients referral fees for new introductions to the schemes while claiming that returns of up to $80,000 a year could be earned with investments of under a $100.
According to the FTC, Bitcoin Funding Team and My7Network participants could only generate revenue by recruiting new participants and convincing them to also pay cryptocurrency. The number of people affected worldwide is over 30,000, with campaigns being run through YouTube and Twitter.
Additionally, the FTC charged the defendants for violating the FTC Act’s prohibition “against deceptive acts by misrepresenting the chain referral schemes as bona fide money-making opportunities and by falsely claiming that participants could earn substantial income by participating in the three schemes.” As requested by the FTC, the court has issued a temporary restraining order and frozen the defendants’ assets pending trial.
Florida State Employee Jailed for Crypto Mining
According to Local News, the IT manager of Florida State Department of Citrus, Matthew McDermott, has been arrested for allegedly using state computers to mine cryptocurrencies, with his bail being set at $5,000.
The Florida Department of Law Enforcement were alerted to unusual activities when the normal electricity bill had risen by 40% in a period from October last year through to January. Further investigations found the manager had used a state credit card to purchase over $22,000 worth of graphic processing units for mining.
Ukrainian Court Accepts Claim for Damages in Bitcoin
A court in Ukraine has accepted its first case where the plaintiff demanded compensation for moral damage in Bitcoin. The Ukrainian plaintiff has started the action in a Kyiv court against the national security services for moral damages suffered by an illegal entry and searching of the premises and is claiming damages of 1 Bitcoin. If the action is not challenged and allowed to continue through the system, it could be used as a precedent in Ukrainian law.
Twitter Reported as Ready to Ban Crypto Advertising
Rumor has it that Twitter could follow in the steps of Facebook and Google, as they appear to be preparing to ban all ICO- and cryptocurrency-related business adverts in two weeks or so. The measure seems to be in alignment with previous actions taken through the last few weeks that have definitely affected the price of Bitcoin. As of today, there has been no official confirmation from Twitter.
G20: Cryptos No Risk to World Financial Market
During the G20 summit in Argentina, the cryptocurrency subject was a matter up for discussion. After a few countries expressed their concern regarding cryptocurrencies, Japan asked for this matter to be discussed during the G20 summit in hopes of obtaining stronger resolutions to regulate the market. Although, when the matter was being discussed, the Financial Stability Board Chair Mark Carney told assembled world finance chiefs that at present cryptocurrencies do not pose a risk to the global financial system. He did, however, warn that this could change in the future and that all governments needed to work together to minimize risks from illegal activities through cryptocurrencies and that a joint approach would be necessary in order to develop better regulations. It appears to be that the G20 is supportive of the cryptocurrency market, as long as they become properly regulated.
Bitcoin Prices Tentatively Rise
Through the last seven days, Bitcoin prices started out over $9,000 and had a sudden drop over a day to below $8,000 as a result of the news that circulated the media, such as the recent ban imposed by Google on crypto-related ads.
In the days that followed, Bitcoin started to improve its market dominance and price slightly until the Twitter rumors and fear of what might happen at G20 hit during the weekend, taking prices down to $7,400. As the first good news from G20 hit, the prices climbed back up to $8,600 and at present the price for Bitcoin is $8,500.
There are remaining fears that the bear period still might have more surprises in store before real growth is obtained.