Russian Smelting Giant Begins Testing Digital Trading Platform

Russian mining and smelting giant Nornickel has commenced testing its digital platform for metals trading. As Bloomberg reported on Dec. 5, Nornickel began trialing its platform for digital metal tokens in collaboration with physical commodities trading group Trafigura Group Ltd., metals finance and logistics firm Traxys SA and materials technology and recycling group Umicore SA. Specifically, the platform is designed to enable clients to purchase digital tokens backed by metals and then trade them for physical supplies. Big plans Commenting on the product rollout, Nornickel CEO Vladimir Potanin said that…

Researchers Detect New North Korea-Linked MacOS Malware on Crypto Trading Site

Security researchers have discovered a new cryptocurrency-related macOS malware believed to be the product of North Korean hackers at the Lazarus Group. As tech-focused publication Bleeping Computer reported on Dec. 4, malware researcher Dinesh Devadoss encountered a malicious software on a website called “unioncrypto.vip,” that advertised a “smart cryptocurrency arbitrage trading platform.” The website did not cite any download links, but hosted a malware package under the name “UnionCryptoTrader.” Linkage to North Korean hackers According to the researchers, the malware can retrieve a payload from a remote location and run…

Danish Court Upholds Nordea’s Push to Bar Employees from Trading Bitcoin

Nordea Bank, a financial institution in Denmark that’s part of the largest financial group in Scandinavia, has been given the go-ahead by a Danish court to continue restricting its employees from owning or trading Bitcoin (BTC). The court says the volatility associated with cryptos justifies the ban, according to a BNN report on December 3, 2019. Court Rules in Favor of Nordea Bank Per sources close to the matter, the legal battle between Nordea, a highly reputed bank headquartered in Finland and  Denmark’s union for financial industry employees has finally…

SoFi Obtains BitLicense to Offer Crypto Trading Services in New York

California-based financial firm SoFi has acquired a BitLicense from the New York State Department of Financial Services (NYDFS), the regulator said in a statement on Dec. 3. SoFi is now one of 24 crypto-related firms that have obtained a BitLicense since 2015, Bloomberg Law’s crypto reporter Lydia Beyoud tweeted the same day. Specifically, SoFi has acquired two licenses — a virtual currency license (BitLicense) and a money transmitter license — that will allow SoFi Digital Assets to offer crypto trading services to its New York customers.  According to the announcement,…

Binance Crypto Exchange Adds Four Trading Pairs for Russian Ruble

Major cryptocurrency exchange Binance listed four Russian ruble trading pairs, according to an announcement on Dec. 2. The first trading pairs featuring the ruble include Binance Coin (BNB), Bitcoin (BTC), Ether (ETH) and XRP. Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao commented on the development in a tweet sent the same day. Binance’s addition of trading pairs follows the introduction of ruble trading on the platform in late October when Zhao announced that users could then deposit and withdraw fiat funds in rubles.  Zhao has previously lauded Russia’s position as an important jurisdiction…

Largest Indian State to Pilot Blockchain-Based Solar Energy Trading

The Indian state of Uttar Pradesh (UP) will pilot a peer-to-peer (P2P) solar power trading project in partnership with Australian blockchain energy company Power Ledger. The state power utility UP Power Corporation Limited and UP New and Renewable Energy Development Agency have partnered with Power Ledger to launch a trial of P2P solar energy trading to examine its practicability, according to a Nov. 28 press release. The first phase of the project is set to be completed by March 2020. During the trial, Power Ledger will integrate its blockchain-based platform…