Asia and Australia

Welcome to another weekly blockchain news roundup from around the world. Here, we present to you all the latest Bitcoin news, continent by continent and country by country.

Japan

Government Swamped with New Exchange Applications as Year’s End Approaches: Top Japanese financial watchdog Financial Supervisory Authority (FSA) has announced that it has received over 190 applications from potential exchanges in 2019 alone with many of them being filed in the recent months.

The move happened after the FSA gave the local cryptocurrency exchange union called Japanese Virtual Currencies Association (JVCEA) the authority to self-regulate the industry. The agency also stepped up in the classification of different tokens being traded on the market and distributed them into three categories; 1. Virtual currencies with no issuers (Bitcoin, etc), 2. Virtual currencies with issuers and 3. Currencies with issuers who also distribute profits among the investors.

Japan is currently among the most innovative and open countries when it comes to cryptocurrencies and blockchain development. One of the reasons why Japan is progressing so well is its flexible laws that are currently enforced on the industry.

South Korea

Cryptocurrency Exchange Acquitted by South Korean Court: Korean cryptocurrency exchange Bithumb has been cleared of all charges by a Korean court in a case filed by one of its affected users whose assets were stolen in one of the biggest crypto hacks of the current year.

According to the lawsuit, the user alleged that the exchange and its below-par security features were to be blamed for the hack that resulted in almost $355,000 worth of stolen funds from his account. The lawsuit was dismissed because the judge ruled that the company had fulfilled its obligation by sending confirmation messages to his phone. Still, this might not be the end of Bithumb’s legal issues.

Business School Reportedly Offering Crypto and Blockchain MBA Program: A major South Korean business school will now reportedly offer a cryptocurrency focused business degree program with crypto-specific courses including Bitcoin, Ethereum, Smart contracts, Game Theory, and App Development.

The new program will help the development of valuable human resource needed in the sector.

China

40% Chinese Willing to Invest in Cryptocurrencies: A recent survey in China shows that over 40% of the public would still be interested in investing in cryptocurrencies despite the price slump of 2018 that may well go into the year 2019 too.

According to a recent survey by a Chinese cryptocurrency media outlet PANews, out of 4980 participants, around 40% believed that they would still invest in cryptocurrencies. Astonishingly, 14.2 % had already invested in cryptocurrencies despite the blanket ban in mainland China. More than 98.2% of the populace had already heard about cryptocurrencies.

Chinese Taipei (Taiwan)

Miner Hit with $3 Million Power Theft Scandal: A Taiwan-based miner has been charged by the police for mining $14 million worth of cryptocurrencies from $3 million worth of stolen power. Known only as Yang, the miner will face charges in a local court.

According to police sources, Yang used rewiring to reroute electricity for mining purposes which is illegal and considered theft of essential commodity.

India

New Indian Committee may be Favourable to Bitcoin: India may have banned cryptocurrencies in the latest move but a new governmental committee in the parliament may have pro-crypto leanings according to latest reports.

According to a member of the committee, the government may be looking to partially legalize cryptocurrencies because there is a general consensus that cryptocurrencies cannot be deemed as completely “illegal” as the central bank has declared them to be.

Australia

Anti-Encryption Bill May Affect Operations of Blockchain Companies: A new law passed by the Australian parliament may affect the blockchain startups operating in the country.

The new bill named Telecommunications and Other Legislation Amendment Assistance and Access Bill 2018 will tighten the laws on privacy and will give government sweeping powers that they can use at their will. The move is similar to the law passed in the US named “Warrant Canary” that gave more powers to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).

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