Singapore Cryptocurrency News: HelloGold, G-BiT
Singapore-based fintech company HelloGold has received certification for its gold-backed virtual currency that entirely complies with Sharia law.
The company has been granted permission to operate its cryptocurrency product GOLDX by Malaysia-based Islamic finance consultancy Amanie Advisors. The new digital currency was introduced by HelloGold at the end of 2017.
Unlike other virtual currencies, GOLDX involves the issuance of a token backed by physical gold stored in a vault in Singapore, and transactions must be completed within a defined time period, according to chief marketing officer Manuel Ho as quoted by Reuters. The listed terms reportedly guarantee transparency, certainty and immediacy of transactions, which are the basic principles for Islamic financial contracts.
The step may boost the number of fintech corporations willing to expand into Islamic finance markets, opening up such regions as the Middle East and Southeast Asia.
Last year, HelloGold launched a blockchain-based mobile application in Malaysia. The app, which provides users with an opportunity to buy and sell physical, investment-grade gold, was also certified by Amanie Advisors. The company plans to extend its online gold platform in Thailand later this year, with the third market expected to emerge by the end of 2018.
HelloGold is also exploring other unspecified assets for its blockchain technology, which involves a shared electronic ledger that allows parties to track transaction information through a secure network.
In September, the head of Malaysia’s central bank said that the office was working on regulations for trading and exchanging cryptocurrencies. Muhammad bin Ibrahim stressed that enterprises converting cryptocurrencies into cash will be on the radar of Malaysia’s Bank Negara.
Missing out on bitcoin’s wild rally may not be the worst thing in the world. You could be sitting on a fortune unable to access it. Data shows up to 23 percent of bitcoins currently in circulation may be lost forever.
It is impossible to say exactly how many bitcoins are being hoarded and how many will never be recovered. According to estimates from blockchain analysis company Chainalysis, between 2.78 million and 3.79 million bitcoins worth up to $50 billion at current prices are already gone for good.
The findings were based on a detailed empirical analysis of the blockchain where all bitcoin transactions are recorded. Chainalysis used age and transaction metrics to work out which bitcoin hasn’t been moved in a very long time.
The firm also estimated that some two percent of all bitcoins traded throughout 2017 were lost. That accounts for a billion dollars’ worth of the digital currency.
Such losses are expected to continue, but they should gradually become rarer, Chainalysis said, explaining it that owners are taking added care of their cryptocurrency as its value spiked during the year.
Analysts say one of the main reasons behind the lost cryptocurrencies is forgotten passwords because storing bitcoins works in such a way they can’t be recovered without crucial information.
Having a cryptocurrency “wallet” on a hard drive or flash drive means it is protected from being stolen online. However, if the owner loses access to the device, the coins are also lost forever. Many early miners and investors have misplaced the currency before it was ever worth anything.
Experts from Chainalysis suggest around a million of the lost bitcoins could belong to the cryptocurrency’s mysterious inventor Satoshi Nakamoto. His fortune is thought to currently stand at over $17 billion and could turn him into the world’s first trillionaire. According to media reports, Nakamoto has never spent a single coin.
To recover their lost or forgotten passwords desperate bitcoin investors are turning to different methods, including hypnosis and ‘brute force’ attacks with a supercomputer. The so-called crypto-hypnotists say they could help people recall forgotten passwords or find misplaced storage devices.
Investor Philip Neumeier bought 15 bitcoins for roughly $260 in 2013 when he wanted to accept the virtual currency on his e-commerce site. Trying to recover the long-forgotten password to his cache, which has skyrocketed in value to nearly $200,000, the distraught investor considered hypnosis but decided instead to build a supercomputer to crack the code.
The editor of Wire and founder of the website Boing Boing, Mark Frauenfelder published a story on his four-month unsuccessful attempts to recover the password of a bitcoin wallet with the help of hypnosis. He finally got access to the wallet after appealing to hackers.
However, nothing could help James Howells, a British IT worker who claims he threw away a hard drive with 7,500 bitcoins on it in 2013. Worth $130 at the time, their value today – around $100 million.
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