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International Tax Authorities Form Coalition to Fight Cryptocurrency Tax Crimes

International Tax Authorities Form Coalition to Fight Cryptocurrency Tax Crimes

In a press release published on the IRS website this week, it was revealed that the US tax agency had joined a coalition with its counterparts in from Australia, Canada, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom to form the Joint Chiefs of Global Tax Enforcement (J5). The coalition will be working with the OECD to tackle crimes involving offshore structures and financial instruments used to launder money and commit tax crimes, which will include the growing threat posed by cryptocurrencies and cybercrime to tax administrations. IRS Chief of Criminal Investigation Don Fort said that they decided to take an international […]

Viber to Launch Cryptocurrency Next Year in Russia

Viber to Launch Cryptocurrency Next Year in Russia

The parent company of cross-platform messaging app Viber revealed this week that it studying the possibility of launching a cryptocurrency called Rakuten Coin which they are targeting to launch in Russia by next year. Viber CEO Djamel Agaoua said that they will be using the app, which already has over one billion users, as a platform for Rakuten’s cryptocurrency. The Japanese multinational company previously announced that it will be rolling out a $9 billion loyalty program into their blockchain-based cryptocurrency. Agaoua also said that the company will be launching an ecommerce platform in Russia as early as the fourth quarter […]

Social Media Apps Deliberately Being Made to be Addictive, Insiders Say

Social Media Apps Deliberately Being Made to be Addictive, Insiders Say

Silicon Valley insiders recently revealed in an interview that tech companies are intentionally engineering their apps to be as addictive as possible. Aza Raskin, a former Mozilla and Jawbone employee, likened it to “behavioural cocaine” which tech firms sprinkle all over the interface so that the user keeps coming back and back and back. Raskin formerly worked at Humanized, a computer UI consultancy and is also the inventor of the infinite scroll feature used in most apps today. Likewise, co-inventor of Facebook’s Like button Leah Pearlman said that she began depending on Facebook for validation and to stave off loneliness […]

ZTE Drops More Executives, Gets Temporary Reprieve from US Govt

ZTE Drops More Executives, Gets Temporary Reprieve from US Govt

The US government this week reportedly granted temporary reprieve to China’s ZTE Corp, allowing it to conduct business needed to maintain existing networks and equipment while working to lift the supplier ban that was imposed on it. Reuters said that the U.S. Commerce Department’s Bureau of Industry and Services authorization runs from July 2 until Aug. 1. ZTE also revealed in exchange filings last Tuesday that one other senior executive had left. However, a source said that seven other, including the vice presidents of legal, finance and supply chain departments had been removed in a radical overhaul of its management. […]

Cybersecurity Fund Sees 30 Percent Returns After Equifax Breach

Cybersecurity Fund Sees 30 Percent Returns After Equifax Breach

Despite the heightened trade rhetoric that caused the stock market to struggle and issues that have dampened the performance of the tech stocks in recent months, it was observed that the cybersecurity sub-sector is going in the opposite direction, with popular exchange-traded fund gaining as much as 31% since the Equifax data breach.   The ETFMG Prime Cyber Security ETF (HACK), which was launched in November 2014, is now up 18% this year. Included in the fund are companies such as Palo Alto Networks, Fortinet, FireEye, Juniper Networks, CyberArk Software, Symantec and Cisco. According to Gartner, cybersecurity spending is expected […]

Trump Admin to Block China Mobile from Entering US Market

Trump Admin to Block China Mobile from Entering US Market

The US government recommended this week that China Mobile be prevented to enter into the US telecommunications market, saying that the company may pose a national security risk. David Redl, assistant secretary for communications and information at the U.S. Department of Commerce, said that they were unable to resolve concerns on risk to US law enforcement and national security interests even after a significant amount of engagement with the company. China Mobile, currently the world’s largest telecom carrier with 899 million subscribers, is largely owned by China Mobile Communications Corporation, a Chinese government-controlled firm.   Source: Reuters

Federal Probe into Facebook Scandal Widens

Federal Probe into Facebook Scandal Widens

The Washington Post reported Monday that the investigation into Facebook’s data breach involving Cambridge Analytica is being broadened to focus on the statements and actions of the tech giant. The investigation, which involves the Securities and Exchange Commission, will look into the information that Facebook had already publicly disclosed, and whether it agrees with the underlying facts. The authorities will also probe whether Facebook had made the disclosures to their investors and the public in a complete and timely manner. A Facebook representative said that they are already fully cooperating with officials in the US and other countries and have […]

Facebook Bug Unblocks Users, Affects 800,000

Facebook Bug Unblocks Users, Affects 800,000

Facebook revealed last Monday that a bug on its platform had temporarily unblocked previously blocked users, allowing them to send unwelcome messages and exposing hidden messages as well. The bug, which was estimated to have affected 800,000 users, was quickly fixed. However, it marks another misstep for the social network which is already under heavy scrutiny for its string of privacy errors. Facebook, however said that only one person on a user’s block list was temporarily unblocked. In a blog post, Facebook’s chief privacy officer apologized and said that the company knows that the ability to block a user is […]

US Fund Managers Position Ports to Shield Against US-Sino Trade War

US Fund Managers Position Ports to Shield Against US-Sino Trade War

A number of fund managers in the US are reportedly buying up shares of companies that could potentially shield them from disruptions resulting from the escalating trade war between the US and China. Managers from Baron Funds, Thornburg Investment Management, and James Advantage Funds were seen to have bought cloud-based companies such as Salesforce.com, and those that get the majority of its revenue domestically like Just Eat Plc. Meanwhile, Janus Henderson Global Technology fund was seen to have been selling off semiconductor companies overall while buying up more Chinese internet companies such as Tencent Holdings Ltd and Alibaba Group Holdings […]

Over 800 Cryptocurrencies Dead as Bitcoin Plunges 70 Percent from All Time High

Over 800 Cryptocurrencies Dead as Bitcoin Plunges 70 Percent from All Time High

It has been estimated that around 800 cryptocurrency projects that have been created from the proliferation of initial coin offerings in the last 18 months are now dead. The discontinued cryptocurrencies are listed on a website called Dead Coins where most now trade less than a cent. Most of the projects were killed off because they were scams, joke projects, or had products that failed to materialize. Analysts have also said that Bitcoin’s almost 70% fall from its record high contributed significantly to the bearish sentiment surrounding cryptocurrencies.       Source: CNBC