South Korean Cryptocurrency Exchange Collaborates with two Companies; Aims at Enhancing …

Both the companies will offer ‘public disclosure information’ and ‘smart contract audit information’ for digital currencies registered on Coinone.

The leading crypto exchange firm of South Korea, Coinone has teamed up with two companies, namely, CertiK-a cybersecurity audit company and Xangle – a disclosures firm to improve security and transparency attributes.

As per the Coinone announcement on August 7, the company has inked a deal on white paper with CertiK and Xangle. Both the companies will offer ‘public disclosure information’ and ‘smart contract audit information’ for digital currencies registered on Coinone.

As part of the collaboration, Xangle will function on project transparency and investor protection, and CertiK will monitor the security of the program, project information security, technology validation, screening process, and other.

The report for Xangle mentions that the company will offer security for crypto traders and also enhance the transparency of the projects. The disclosures might contain information about new tokens, investment stocks volatility, modifications in a project’s business framework, and token governance.

CertiK will examine projects at the code level and will carry audits of project registered on Coinone, according to the company announcement.

South Korea’s no.3 cryptocurrency exchange mentioned,

Coinone strives to establish a listing system and strengthen the public function of the exchange (market surveillance, disclosure, and internal listing) in order to harmonize the two goals of actively listing cryptocurrency and securing investor confidence.

The move comes after three major cryptocurrency firms. Namely, Bithumb, Upbit, and Korbit, along with Coinone, are facing difficulties in updating their bank accounts in the country. The South Korean banking organizations are now requesting for a demand standards from crypto exchanges, following the new guidelines of Financial Action Task Force (FATF). According to new FATF guidelines, it makes crypto exchanges officially responsible for any identified money laundering operations. The limitations are so strong that small scale crypto exchange firms might find it difficult to stand.

Recently, it was reported that the South Korean Financial Intelligence Unit of Financial Services Commission is considering monitoring of the crypto exchanges directly.

Coinone other Developments

Earlier, it was reported by a source, Coinone had revealed its plan to grow its business across Indonesia, in April 2018. The crypto exchange outlined to back six digital currencies in June after launches such as Bitcoin, Ether, Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin, Ethereum Classic, and Quantum.

On the other side, payment business of Coinone and Coinone Transfer- subsidiary cryptocurrency exchange has collaborated with SBI Ripple Asia to simplify blockchain remittance in the country. The new platform is named as ‘Cross’ that will enable customers to send remittances across 8 nations also in Thailand, the Philippines, and China.

According to the information, in the local South Korea press mentions that the main issue for Coinone is the risk that the coins would launch viruses by itself in the crypto exchange and enable to hack it.

About CertiK

CertiK – a US-based company, established in 2017. The company has two members and a co-founder, Ronghui Gu. The blockchain-based cybersecurity startup firm has received investment from Binance Labs and Consensus Labs. CertiK is already operating in South Korea. Back in June 2019, the firm reached a deal with the local blockchain platform, FLETA in order to improve the systems of the company and help protect other components of its system.

Apart from partnering with Coinone, CertiK also introduced a native blockchain on 22nd July.

About Xangle

Xangle is cryptocurrency disclosure firm, headquartered at Seoul. The company offers ‘tear-sheet-style’ details of tokens structure and fundamentals such as formal name, important people, registered address, pricing, and important events.

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Seoul Announces State Cryptocurrency for its Smart City Project

Seoul, South Korea’s capital and largest city, will have created its own virtual currency for its citizens by November. This is in line with the development …

Seoul, South Korea’s capital and largest city, will have created its own virtual currency for its citizens by November. This is in line with the development of a Seoul Smart City first announced in October last year by the city’s mayor, Park Won-Soon.

Seoul S-Coins

The city held a blockchain workshop sometime last month and announced the new S-Coin among other developments for a blockchain-powered smart city. The cryptocurrency will be used in many ways, including as an incentive for citizens to be a part of the governing system and also encourage transparency.

The city of Seoul will award its citizens with the coins, for various activities ranging from the use of public services to performing certain activity like payment of taxes and wilfully taking part in public opinion polls.

The S-Coin will be part of a city-wide rewards system and spending will be set by the government, for specific uses cases – detailing where it may or may not be spent as well as in what quantities or regularity.

The city will also allow the S-Coins be awarded to children by their parents however they deem fit. Parents will also be able to set the coins for spending at specific stores, meaning it will not be usable at others. The programming can also specify that the coins be used only by children, so service will be denied if possessed by an adult.

Another State-Issued Virtual Currency

Earlier in July, the city of Busan, South Korea’s second largest, announced that it was looking to create its own virtual currency in partnership with Busan Bank. The cryptocurrency will be a stablecoin and pegged to the local currency.

Image Credits: Stock Photo Secrets

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South Korea’s Ban on Crypto Will Choke The Special Blockchain Zone

According to local sources, the existing cryptocurrency ban in South Korea will the make the Busan blockchain regulation-free zone ‘ineffective’.
Korea blockchain cryptocurrencyNews


davitbabayan| Aug 07, 2019 | 12:00

According to local sources, the existing cryptocurrency ban in South Korea will the make the Busan blockchain regulation-free zone ‘ineffective’.

The South Korean Ministry of SMEs and Startups in 2018 designated 1 trillion KRW for growing their blockchain technology industry as part of a “Growth Through Innovation” plan. But the place is running dry of companies since they cannot launch private assets atop the ledgers they are creating. Those assets are what the world otherwise called native cryptocurrencies, which, according to local civil and commercial laws, remain banned in South Korea.

Cryptocurrency-enabled Startup Falters

Korea IT Times reported this Wednesday that the newly announced ‘blockchain-regulation free’ city of Busan is likely to be ‘ineffective’ as a result of the country’s existing strict regulations around cryptocurrencies and ICO’s.

According to Korea IT Times, a blockchain startup named OkayCoin Core had its screening rejected due to regulatory restrictions. The firm got excluded by a selection committee despite having nothing to do with decentralized or initial-coin-offering assets. It just created asset-backed securities – by merely combining cryptography with tokenization – that would flow seamlessly across wallets while their transactions getting stored automatically atop a ledger.

OkayCoin eventually fell short when it came to respecting the Korean Financial Services Commission’s anti-crypto directive. One promising company down, as a result.

The Busan Metropolitan Government, which has put its weight behind the blockchain exclusive zone, confirmed OkayCoin is their project, which was likely to begin by the end of this year. On regulatory roadblocks, the body commented that they would review the proposals about cryptocurrencies offered by relevant ministries, admitting that they have no authority to change the mind of anti-crypto lawmakers and regulators. Excerpts:

Busan should review the proposals when the relevant ministries give opinions on the special district participation such as acceptance or conditional acceptance. If the Korean Financial Services Commission keeps an unacceptable position for ‘the special regulation-free on cryptocurrency, the Ministry of SMEs and Startups cannot change it to acceptance.

Stuck Startups

The Busan blockchain-regulation free zone has been created to allow for work to be done in four key areas: logistics, tourism, public safety, and finance. Around 13 companies applied to open offices in the area, given its low cost and tax requirements. One of the firms, the Busan Bank, had even launched a cryptography-enabled currency to boost circulation atop its private blockchain. But it changed the term ‘cryptocurrency’ to ‘crypto voucher’ following the Korean Financial Services Commission’s ban on launching digital assets.

Busan Bank is among the only selected companies for the Busan Blockchain Special Zone, listed alongside BiPi & Solution, Busan Techno Park (Food & Water), Hyundai Pay, Korea Tour Pass (Tourism), Coinplug, Sarada (public safety).

The South Korean government wants to spend $1 trillion on the blockchain development in the coming years.

Do you think South Korea’s existing cryptocurrency laws will affect the new ‘special blockchain zone’? Add your thoughts below.

Images via Shutterstock

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South Korea reveals blockchain plans for defense and arms procurement

… Defense Technology Quality Agency, and Korea Defense Industry Promotion Association to build the distributed ledger technology (DLT) solution.

On the 29th July, South Korea’s state Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA) announced that it is working with multiple other agencies for an interoperable blockchain system. The arms procurement department hopes to create a more transparent and fair platform for military administration.

Three days before the announcement, DAPA made an agreement with the National Defense Science Institute, Defense Technology Quality Agency, and Korea Defense Industry Promotion Association to build the distributed ledger technology (DLT) solution.

They plan is to use blockchain to track the entire bidding process from the receipt of proposals to the evaluation of bids on defense contracts. Ultimate this should reduce the risk of fraud and increase efficiency by using one system between them. South Korea’s military funding programs will also be logged on the blockchain.

DAPA has selected firms Abydos and IBCT for the technology side of the project. Last week’s release claims it has been working with the companies since April when the organization first published its intent to use blockchain technology.

As revealed back then, the Defense Technology Quality Agency will indeed be part of a blockchain application for weapons logistics. Sensitive documents approving munitions being transported and delivered will be managed with DLT to protect against hacking and provide trustworthy data.

Kim Tae-gon, the Planning and Coordination Officer of the Defense Business Administration, stated: “We will continue to find ways to expand the blockchain through cooperation with the contracting organizations so that the [new technology] can be applied effectively and efficiently in the field of defense business.” (via Google Translate)

Last month KT, South Korea’s largest telecoms firm, announced a blockchain-based security service for connected devices via satellite. It appears the company is also hoping to apply blockchain in the military, for instance authenticating remote access to naval CCTV.

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Is South Korea the new safe haven for Indian Swiss bank account holders?

South Korean banks were even offering virtualcurrency accounts to clients. However, by 2018, the cryptocurrency boom went bust, with South Korea’s …

With Switzerland gearing up to share with India the information of Indian bank account holders, there seems to have been a massive exodus of Indian money to South Korea in the past year. Bank of International Standards (BIS) data show a 900 per cent spike in non-bank deposits in South Korean banks during 2018.

Non-bank deposits include corporate and individual deposits and exclude inter-bank transactions. These were the same deposits that were quoted by former finance minister Piyush Goyal in 2018 to defend the Narendra Modi government over Indians’ rising deposits in Swiss banks.

BIS data show that non-bank loans and deposits of Indian residents in South Korea stood at $904 million at the end of 2018. The previous year, Indians had held just $1 million in South Korean banks. Since the Modi government came to power for the first term in 2014, Indians barely held about $4 million in that country. By comparison, such deposits by Indians across the world was $9.5 billion in 2018 — $1 billion more than a year before. This astronomical rise seems to coincide with a surge in non-bank deposits in South Korea from across the world. Such deposits in South Korea from individuals across the world almost doubled in 2018 — from $19 billion a year before to $37 billion.

Even as South Korea has seen a stupendous surge in money held by Indians as non-bank deposits, there has been a gradual outflow of money from Swiss bank accounts and certain other tax havens traditionally used for stashing wealth to evade taxation. According to BIS, Indians held just about $85 million in non-bank deposits in Swiss banks in 2018, compared with $347 million in 2014. Swiss bank deposits fell every year during the tenure of the first Modi government.

The initial trend of an exodus from Switzerland and an influx into Hong Kong’s banks also seems to be cooling off. Indians’ deposits in Hong Kong touched a five-year high of $1.4 billion in 2015 but fell to almost $600 million in 2018.

There was also a significant fall in such deposits by Indians in other tax havens like Isle of Man and Jersey. The trend of post-recession increase in non-bank deposits by Indians in the United Kingdom (UK), meanwhile, continues to show an upward trend. In 2018, it touched a five-year high of $2.7 billion, the highest among all nations.

So, what explains the astonishing spike of deposits in South Korea? It coincides with the cryptocurrency boom of 2017 in that country. Reports had suggested at the time that South Koreans’ craze for cryptocurrencies had reached a crescendo by December 2017, with a third of that country’s workforce invested in cryptocurrencies like bitcoins and ethereum. While the spike in deposits gets reflected in bank accounts only in the first quarter of 2018, the money would have started flowing when the craze was at its peak in the latter half of 2017.

South Korean banks were even offering virtual-currency accounts to clients. However, by 2018, the cryptocurrency boom went bust, with South Korea’s Financial Services Commission (FSC) launching investigations against banks that provided virtual-currency accounts to handle cryptocurrencies. Surprisingly, despite the crypto story going bust in South Korea, Indians continued to deposit more money there. From January to April 2018, Indians’ deposits in South Korean banks swelled from $1 million to over $600 million. From April to July, this increased to $800 million. After remaining constant in the third quarter, there was another surge of $100 million from September to December. A Reuters report dated January 8, 2018, had quoted Choi Jong-Ku, the chairman of South Korea’s FSC, as saying: “Virtual currency is currently unable to function as a means of payment and it is being used for illegal purposes like money laundering, scams and fraudulent investor operations.”

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