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This week in FinTech, Bitcoin races Bank of America, blockchain makes its way into commuters’ lives across the globe, and YAM announces where it went wrong.

Over the weekend,

Bitcoin’s market cap was almost as big as that of Bank of America amid increasing prices. At $217 billion (on Saturday), it is only $9 billion shy of reaching BoA’s holding.

South Korea announced they will be implementing a blockchain-backed toll system. It is expected to be implemented by the end of 2020 and will use the Hana One Q mobile app.

On Monday,

Orbs, an Israeli blockchain startup, penned an open letter to French President Emmanuel Macron offering blockchain solutions to help distribute and track foreign aid to Beirut after the August 4th explosion. President Macron has been highly active in helping Lebanon after the tragic event.

Russian Railways, Russia’s national rail company, is looking to integrate blockchain technology in their systems to improve logistics across the country. Smart contracts could be used to manage container train maintenance and reduce operations for shipment and storage to decrease costs.

On Tuesday,

The mastermind behind the $300K XRP theft has been sentenced to 2 years in prison. Charged in 2018, she committed the crime by hacking into her victim’s email account.

Russia’s Federal Financial Monitoring Service is building an analytics platform to track crypto transactions through AI. Its purpose is to track, prevent, and fight illegal crypto activity.

On Wednesday,

Seongnam, South Korea will expand its blockchain payment program by adding digital gift certificates through the Chak mobile app. The gift certificates represent cash, check cards, and mobile cards and can be used in thousands of locations in the city.

The Bolivarian Council of Mayors of Venezuela signed a “National Tax Harmonization Agreement” to begin collecting taxes and sanctions. The law includes Petro as a method of payment and is being implemented in 305 municipalities through this digital system.

South Korea has issued over one million blockchain-powered drivers licenses. Users download the PASS app onto their smartphones to show a bar-code or a QR code as proof of identity.

On Thursday,

The United States Department of Justice seized million-dollar crypto funds from Al-Qaeda and ISIS. They described it as the largest operation in crypto terrorism funding they have ever run.

Lack of auditing one line of code in YAM.Finance led to its demise. In an effort to market the project as “high-demand” and in a“ground-floor entry stage”, the company forwent internal audits.

BitMEX announced it will begin KYCing all customers in a move to provide a more secure trading environment. They state it is a 5 minute process and will be hosting a competition for all verified users.

On Friday,

China’s Commerce Ministry announced that its CBDC trials will be expanded into Beijing, Tianjin, and Hebei. They have not provided a time frame yet.

The Oasis Foundation announced a University Program to “foster the growth of a broad and substantive ecosystem focused on building a responsible data economy”. 20 of the top universities around the world have joined.

Swipe, the wallet and crypto debit card company, integrated with ChainLink data oracles to provide more accurate token conversion prices for its users. The CEO, Joselito Lizarondo, states that this is a step to ensure greater transparency for customers and to continue moving toward system decentralization.

For more information on these stories, visit:

BTC BoA: https://cointelegraph.com/news/bitcoin-is-almost-as-big-as-bank-of-america

SK Tolls: https://www.pymnts.com/blockchain/bitcoin/2020/bitcoin-daily-south-korea-use-blockchain-collect-highway-tolls-polish-financial-watchdog-warns-fake-crypto-scams/

Orbs: https://www.orbs.com/how-president-macron-can-really-bring-change-to-foreign-aid/

Russian Railways: (Russian first hand source) https://gudok.ru/content/first_person/1528250/ | (English third hand publication) https://cointelegraph.com/news/russian-rail-network-could-join-the-blockchain-adoption-wave

XRP theft: https://www.coindesk.com/australian-woman-jailed-for-theft-of-more-than-100000-xrp

Russian crypto tracking: https://blockchain.news/news/russia-build-ai-software-remove-anonymity-users-crypto-transactions

SK gift certificates: https://cryptonews.com/news/south-korean-s-silicon-valley-turns-to-blockchain-powered-pa-7377.htm

Venezuelan taxes: https://www.newsbreak.com/news/1613384538730/bitcoin-daily-venezuela-may-collect-taxes-in-crypto-russian-agency-proposes-ai-to-track-crypto-transactions

Drivers licenses: https://btcmanager.com/million-south-korean-blockchain-drivers-license/

Terrorist funding: https://www.nytimes.com/2020/08/13/us/politics/bitcoin-terrorism.html

YAM: https://www.europeworldnews.com/how-one-line-of-code-killed-yam-finance/

Bitmex KYC: https://www.trendswide.com/bitmex-announces-that-users-have-six-months-to-finish-kyc/

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EQUOS is a cryptocurrency exchange focused on offering innovative product and services that are compliant, fair, and trusted.

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