• Daily Alpha - VEMP
  • Posts
  • ⚔️ SEC's war on crypto continues: Coinme, Up Global and Neil Bergquist fined for ICOs

⚔️ SEC's war on crypto continues: Coinme, Up Global and Neil Bergquist fined for ICOs

⚔️ SEC's war on crypto continues: Coinme, Up Global and Neil Bergquist fined for ICOs 🤝 Google Cloud launches program to support Web3 startups 🚩 Mastercard launched new web3 KYC solution to stop "bad actors" 

GM, frens. We've opened two FTM staking pools, and they're both pretty awesome. First, our $FTM Dual-yield pool allows you to contribute directly to the creation of on-chain games. It's a great way to get involved AND earn rewards for your contribution. Secondly, we've also opened up our signature $VEMP Pool on Fantom. With a fixed APR of 15%, anyone can stake their $VEMP and compound returns on the Fantom network. Check it out: https://app.vemp.xyz

But here's what recently happened in the space:

SEC's war on crypto continues: Coinme, Up Global and Neil Bergquist fined for ICO

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has issued Coinme, Up Global, and Neil Bergquist, who led both companies, with combined fines of nearly $4 million. This is yet another example of the ongoing battle between crypto industry and the SEC.

The fine relates to the initial coin offering (ICO) of a crypto asset called UpToken in 2017. Coinme and Up Global were accused by the SEC of deceiving investors in the ICO mentioned. The defendants agreed to pay the penalty but did not admit to any wrongdoing. Coinme and Up Global will pay a total of $3.77 million while Bergquist himself will pay $150,000.

Coinme is a crypto ATM company that allows customers to withdraw cash in exchange for Bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies. The firm used 1% of every transaction to purchase UpToken and then passed it on to customers as a 1% cashback reward.

The SEC is claiming that the defendants took steps to reduce Coinme’s need to purchase UpToken after the ICO, which would have inflated its value. The SEC also accused parties of “knowingly or recklessly” publicly inflating the amounts raised by the ICO.

Bergquist has also been barred from acting as a director of a public company for the next three years. This comes just a week after five parties were charged for market manipulation over HYDRO token, also by SEC. The war on crypto is now in full swing, with the SEC and other regulators taking steps to clamp down on anything they deem to be illegal activity.

Google Cloud launches program to support Web3 startups

Google Cloud has announced plans for Web3 startups and projects to get access to the same features that many Google Cloud customers enjoy. The “Google for Startups Cloud Program” will now include additional Web3-specific benefits such as up to $200,000 in Google Cloud credits over two years. This program will also offer technical and collaboration support to eligible Web3 projects.

In addition, Google Cloud is partnering with eleven big names within the Web3 community: Aptos, Celo, Flow, the HBAR Foundation, Near and the Solana Foundation as well as some others. Each of these partners will be offering grants up to $1 million exclusively to help accelerate the development of Web3 startups.

Google has been interested in web3 for years, in 2018, it added datasets for Bitcoin. Since then, it has forged several partnerships with industry leaders such as Coinbase and BNB Chain to offer Web3 startup infrastructures. The cloud program is the latest step taken by Google Cloud to foster the growth and development of Web3.

Mastercard launched new web3 KYC solution to stop "bad actors"

Mastercard is launching a new security solution to protect digital asset transactions and increase user verification standards. The solution is called "Mastercard Crypto Credential" which is, according to Mastercard, is designed specifically to reduce the chances of malicious actors in the space.

Each user is assigned a unique identifier that is connected to their Mastercard account. This identifier is used to confirm the address of every digital asset transaction. If a "bad actor" slips through the cracks, Mastercard can revoke their verification if they have been found to be engaging in suspicious activity.

The firm has announced the partners involved in developing the security solution. Mastercard has partnered with Bit2Me, Lirium, Mercado Bitcoin, and Uphold for the wallet side, while Aptos, Avalanche, Polygon, and Solana are the partners for the blockchain side. The community is divided on this one, as, for one the extensive verification standards are seen as a way to help legitimize the industry, but on the other hand, it may be viewed as an attempt by Mastercard to take over the space.

Not even to mention that the whole idea behind crypto was to get away from the likes of Mastercard, and not to have a centralized entity in charge of managing digital asset transactions. Nonetheless, as always, the market will decide what stays and what gets rejected.