SCMP’s Bitcoin Morning Report: All eyes on Mt Gox
Mt Gox to reveal all
All eyes will be focused on Japan-based Mt Gox – due to release a trading statement later today.
On Friday, it temporarily suspended Bitcoin withdrawals on its exchanges citing “technical issues” related to a surge in customer requests for its BTCs. Global Bitcoin prices plunged some 20 per cent on the news.
Evolution of anger - iPhone assault
The fallout surrounding Apple’s decision to remove the last Bitcoin-based digital wallet from its iOS App Store on Thursday has reached all-time delirium. When app creators, Blockchain, broke the news, bitcoin users called for a revolution. Then Bloomberg reported that upset users would ditch their iPhones for rival smartphones – tipped to be Android-based systems. This was until the Financial Times reported that the iPhones were being smashed in a device “mutilating-fury” driven rage – a reflection of how upset the digital currency community is.
Russia’s not-so gold medal winning decision
While all attention was tuned to the opening ceremony of the 22nd Winter Olympics, Russian authorities have banned the use of Bitcoin in the country.
According to Reuters: "Systems for anonymous payments and cyber currencies that have gained considerable circulation - including the most well-known, Bitcoin - are money substitutes and cannot be used by individuals or legal entities."
Russia Today (RT) adds: “Russia’s official currency is the ruble. The introduction of other types of currencies and the issue of money surrogates are banned.”
Moscow’s top law enforcement agencies and the central bank are committed to intervening to prevent illegal acts, according to the Prosecutor General's Office. The meeting is seen to head off a credible threat to its currency system and the move aims to shore up consumer rights. After the China crackdown on Bitcoins, Russia has risen to the second most popular market for bitcoin software, knocking Beijing off its perch.
First jail threat for Floridian pair over Bitcoin use
Two South Florida men could be the first state law prosecutions over the use of Bitcoins. Pascal Reid, 29, and Michel Abner Espinoza, 30, were arrested last week under laws designed to outlaw money laundering. According to Bloomberg, the pair face two counts of money laundering and one count of engaging in an unlicensed money servicing business.
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