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The world of cryptocurrency is in many ways still the wild west, it’s a world filled with misinformation with the intention of funneling funds from unsuspecting investors. Our team receives 1 to 5 emails per day asking about various companies or people that they believe are intending to or have successfully fleeced them. All of the examples below are from people who have contacted us.

Most of these scams are fairly easy to identify with a little bit of research and due diligence. Below are some ways to easily identify these scams.

Guaranteed Returns

If something sounds too good to be true it probably is, and this is no different in the world of cryptocurrency. It is impossible for anyone to guarantee any type of return to anyone who is investing in bitcoin, or cryptocurrency.

While it is extremely possible that the cryptocurrency that you purchase moves up 20% or even 50%, it is just as likely that it goes down this identical amount. If anywhere advertises guaranteed daily, weekly, monthly, or annual returns then you should simply move on. The risk is simply too high. Let’s give an example of a former website promising these type of returns that was successful with funneling $15 Million USD from investors.

Below is another example of a company that promises guaranteed returns with a domain name that should be an indicator that this company is not legitimate: https://www.standard-optimumminer.com/

The promised returns are 20% profit per week, based on compound interest if they simply invested their own money this would be an annual return of 1,310,363.1% per year. Obviously this is not a sustainable or realistic return.

Cloud Mining Scams

While there are some legitimate bitcoin cloud mining operators they are few and far in-between. We decline advertising by any cloud mining company due to the high risk of fraud. If you are interested in Bitcoin, you are better off buying Bitcoin directly from a regulated exchange than to “invest” in cloud mining companies.

How cloud mining works is “investors” buy or lease hash rates from a third-party cloud provider, investors are then compensated with a percentage of the mined bitcoin. This sounds great in theory, but there are no guarantees from the cloud mining operator that they will continue to payout once they have collected your money. It’s also the most common type of scam, as the fraudulent operator can collect money for several months before unsuspecting customers begin asking where their bitcoin is, and by then the fraudulent operator can shut down the website, and start a new one.

Unless you are intimately familiar with the cryptocurrency industry, you should just avoid anything cloud mining.

This example website below https://coinlite.io/ was successful in stealing funds, even when they were unable to spell “mining” properly all over the website.

ICOs (Initial Coin Offerings)

These were popular during the ICO boom in 2017, but they have lost popularity and have since been replaced by IEOs (Initial Exchange Offerings), STOs (Security Token Offerings) and other types of funding. Unless you have some type of information from a reputable contact you should avoid investing in ICOs. If you plan on investing in an ICO, never do so by clicking on a link advertised in social media, or anyone advertising on Google. Unfortunately, Google has a reputation for accepting ads from fraudulent companies, as they perform zero due diligence. Google does have an automated system to refuse certain types of cryptocurrency ads, but it’s very easy to bypass by using non-trigger keywords in the ad itself.

The reason to avoid ICOs is that it is next to impossible to identify whether or not an ICO is legitimate. If you want to invest in cryptocurrency it makes more sense to purchase the tokens on a legitimate exchange than to risk buying from an unknown ICO.

Depending on the report that is reviewed, anywhere between 70 to 90% of ICOs during 2017 and 2018 were scams. Investing in ICOs is simply playing with fire.

Social Media

The most common way unsuspecting investors are fleeced is by social media and YouTube. Twitter and Reddit are the most popular platforms for predatorial behavior.

These type of scams are quite obvious to anyone in the industry but they are still shockingly successful. How these normally operate is they find a celebrity, most often a politician or someone who has in the past tweeted positively about cryptocurrency, and they create a fake promotion.

This promotion is designed to appear to be from the celebrity, but in reality it’s simply made to deceive users, and there is no actual endorsement by the celebrity and the celebrity is certainly not receiving the funds.

Never partificipate in any type of promotion where you need to send cryptocurrency to receive some back. The BTC address that is provided is often controlled by a con artist in the Ukraine, Russia, North Korea, or some other overseas jurisdiction which ensures that it is unlikely for you to recover stolen funds.

If there is anything that you should learn is to never buy crypto from anyone that you find on social media, and never send your crypto to anyone on social media. It takes 30 seconds to create a Twitter account, and there is no KYC performed by any social media platform.

This leads us to our next section, how to quickly identify fraudulent operators.

Branding/Logos/Domain Names

Legitimate companies invest in designing brandable logos and easy to remember domain names. They also invest in themselves. Let’s take a look at the screenshot of this scam website https://bitcoinminingexchange1.com.

This website raises so many redflags it’s difficult to know where to start. Let’s begin with the domain name, bitcoinminingexchange1.com is not a domain name that any legitimate operator would ever use as it is impossible to brand. This is known as a throwaway domain, it’s for people who do not care about building a brand, instead they launch a website with the intention of not holding on to it for long. Once they are done with the website/domain name, they clone it and start a new one.

The logo is also a huge red flag, it looks like it took 30 seconds to design. Another red flag is they claim to be a “cloud mining” operator but the images on the website are related to forex trading, something that is completely unrelated to cryptocurrency, yet less cloud mining.

This website is easy to pick apart, and while it screams SCAM it was still successful at funneling money from a large pool of unsuspecting investors.

Typos/Misspellings

One of the common identifiers of a scam website is when a company cannot be bothered to take the time to proofread the copy on their website. Let’s take this scam website https://cctg.io/ as an example, it seems difficult to believe that any legitimate operator would misspell the same word 8 times in a row. In this case they misspelled “up to” wrong 8 times, and then misspelled “average” wrong 8 times, and this is only in this example screenshot. We have highlighted in white the typos.

Due Diligence

What are some due diligence steps that you can take? First of all, ask yourself if this was not a cryptocurrency website would you trust it? Would you trust a stock broker to have a website that looks like the website you are analyzing? If not, then why take the risk? If there’s even a 1% possibility of losing your funds then the risk is too high and you should simply move on.

Here are some basic due diligence steps:

  1. Review the website for spelling mistakes or amateur errors. Often scammers are based out of the Ukraine or Russia, and English is not their first language.
  2. Review the website for logos, or images, that look like they may have been copied from other websites.
  3. Review the “About Us”, or “Meet the Team” page. The profiles of Founders/Owners/Executives generally should link to LinkedIn, or other social media. Click on these social media accounts and perform some research.
  4. Make sure the LinkedIn profiles actually have details regarding the business you are reviewing, this is to avoid the case when a fraudster simply adds someone’s profile, without the person even being aware of it. (Yes, this is common especially with ICO scams).
  5. Review when the domain name was registered and cross-check this with the “About Us” or “Meet the Team” page. You can see when a domain name was registered by using a “Who Is” service such as this one here. A Who Is simply verifies when a domain name was registered and gives some basic information about ownership. Most of the information in a Who Is can be faked, the important detail you are searching for is the registration date. There should be no discrepancy between what they are claiming on the website and when the domain name was registered. For instance if they claim to have been in business for 3 years, but the domain name was registered last year then you have an issue.
  6. Search for the domain name or brand + scam in Google, for example:  “BitConnect Scam”.
  7. If you heard about the great new crypto, ICO, or cloud mining company from Twitter, or Reddit, odds are it’s a scam. These are generally bots that auto-reply to related posts, and most victims are found on these two social media giants. Facebook is a close third.
  8. Pressure Tactics: If you are told you have a limited period of time to capitalize on a new buzzword crypto, or people are trying to capitalizing on your FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) simply move on.
  9. Phone Calls: No legitimate company or broker will ever cold call you to invest.
  10. Follow your gut, do not let greed betray you. Often we know when something feels wrong, if you have this feeling, simply move on. There will always be other opportunities.

Naabiae Nenu-B is a Medical Health Student and an SEO Specialist dedicated to flushing the web off fake news and scam scandals. He aims at being "Africa's Best Leak and Review Blogger" and that's the unwavering stand of Xycinews Media.

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Fx Analysis

Canada’s Crypto Landscape Today

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The Crypto Landscape Today

The Canadian cryptocurrency market is currently one of the most advanced in the world, despite crypto still only being regarded as an emerging technology.

The Canadian government has proactively participated in formulating regulations to govern the market’s operations and protect its investing citizens. As a result, it appears that the future of cryptocurrency in Canada is bright, among both investors and miners.

The country is spearheading the ascent of cryptocurrencies in both domestic and foreign assets. As a result, Canada became the first country globally to pass a law on digital currencies, which inevitably made a real statement in the cryptocurrency space.

As cryptocurrency prices fluctuate and are expected to rise over the coming months, many more Canadians are looking to buy and invest in Bitcoin through platforms such as MyBTC.ca.

According to Statista, Bitcoin is still by far the leading cryptocurrency for Canadians to invest in with Ethereum, Ripple, and Litecon some way behind. Bitcoin is also more widely accepted in Canada, with all the big cities accepting cryptocurrency to some capacity in exchange for goods and services.

The Canadian cities that notably appear more crypto-friendly are Vancouver, Toronto, and Ottawa with a wide range of businesses accepting cryptocurrencies in each of these cities. In their role as regulators, the Canadian government remains optimistic about crypto and actively invests in research projects for leveraging the technology.

Conducive Environment for Crypto

Canada, unlike most countries, generally has a friendlier approach with certain policies towards crypto. Its policies encourage individuals to participate in crypto-related activities and these have been a key driver for Canada’s innovation in the crypto sector.

Rather than let crypto become the wild wild west, Canada’s active involvement in the sector brings a sense of orderliness to this fast-expanding industry. While other countries outrightly outlaw or impose strict regulations against crypto operations, Canada’s friendlier stance makes the country stand out from the crowd internationally in a unique way.

Primarily, cryptocurrencies are regulated as securities, with the regulators striving to protect the public. The Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) frequently issue directives on cryptocurrency operations across Canada. In one of the latest notices, CSA and the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC) outlined the steps for crypto-asset trading platforms (CTPs) to comply with relevant regulations.

The Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) also partners with fintech firms to ensure all digital asset innovations remain compliant with the country’s regulations. In a recent case, the OSC went on an offensive against cryptocurrency exchanges that allegedly failed to comply with securities law. This onslaught saw Binance Exchange exit the Ontario market.

Canada’s Crypto Regulatory Framework

Surprisingly, not many countries have been as quick and proactive as Canada in setting up regulatory frameworks for the crypto sector. For many investors, regulating cryptocurrency operations is critical as the technology it features favors its use in facilitating illegal or malicious financial transactions.

Some crypto proponents and developers detest an overly regulated sector that may hurt crypto adoption and innovation in the industry. Striking a balance between both situations is a significant step for Canada in ensuring a thriving and secure crypto environment. So, how is Canada working towards this goal?

Canada passed the Proceeds of Crime (Money Laundering) and Terrorist Financing Act (PCMLTFA) in 2014 (later amended in 2019) to set up a framework for handling virtual currencies. This act treats entities dealing with cryptocurrencies as money service businesses (MSBs). Like MSBs dealing with fiat currencies, crypto MSBs are subject to keeping records, verifying procedures, and reporting suspicious transactions. The MSBs must also register with the Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada (FINTRAC).

This legislation adds a layer of security to the crypto environment in Canada by pushing out non-compliant operators from the market. Consequently, investors are less likely to fall victim to illicit activities prevalent in crypto markets. What’s more, a confident public will invest more in crypto and drive adoption and crypto use cases. This new industry, which is speculative, has the potential to grow and have crypto as a competing store of value against existing methods for storing value.

Bank of Canada’s Position

The Bank of Canada has often stated it has no plans of issuing a Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) as long as cash usage hasn’t fallen significantly.

The COVID-19 pandemic saw an uptake of cryptocurrencies and this triggered the Bank of Canada to accelerate its work on a CBDC. Despite a skeptic attitude towards cryptocurrencies, in an address, the bank’s deputy governor regards stablecoins as having a higher potential for adoption. In creating its CBDC, the bank has stated that it considers the environmental impacts to ensure the currencies operate with excellent energy efficiency.

The bank has also called out risks associated with stablecoins, stating that if widely adopted, they could disrupt the bank’s monetary policy mechanisms. So, the bank prefers that stablecoins in the Canadian crypto market be backed by the Canadian dollar. Considering the Bank of Canada’s position and the potential of crypto to render such institutions obsolete, it’s rather stern stance on cryptocurrencies is expected. However, unlike many other central banks worldwide, the bank’s stance is more welcoming.

Bitcoin ETFs and other ETFs

A cryptocurrency exchange-traded fund (ETF) is a type of security that tracks or mimics the price of a digital currency and can be traded on a stock exchange.

Most mainstream investors experience difficulty investing in crypto, which goes through multiple security procedures and crypto exchanges to hold the cryptocurrencies. Therefore, an ETF simplifies cryptocurrency trading for investors. Canada became the first country to launch a Bitcoin ETF in North America with OSC’s approval of Purpose Bitcoin ETF (BTCC) at the start of 2021. The ETF is traded on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX). Others include Evolve Bitcoin ETF (EBIT) and CI Galaxy Bitcoin ETF (BTCX), all trading on TSX.

Apart from BTC ETFs, Canada also has ETFs for Etheruem’s Ether (ETH). ETH ETFs, like BTC, increase investors’ exposure to ETH. The top ETH ETFs are issued by Purpose Investments, CI Global Asset Management, and Evolve. The presence of ETFs for Canadians illustrates the strides taken by Canadian regulators in embracing the sector.

Big NFT Market Player

The top-performing product in the blockchain sector this year is the non-fungible token, or NFT. These unique digital collectibles have expanded the possibilities for blockchain applications in distributing physical or digital items like artwork or music.

One of the top NFT collections during the NFT craze was the NBA Top Shot. The collection comprises tokenized video highlights of memorable moments from NBA games. The NFT studio behind NBA Top Shot is Vancouver-based Dapper Labs. The studio is also the creator of CryptoKitties, the virtual cat collectibles that sparked the first NFT craze back in 2017.

The NFT space has gained significant input from Canada’s innovative developers. This innovation can be attributed partly to the comparably favorable environment for crypto in the country.

Canada’s Cryptocurrency Mining

The latest fall in crypto prices this year has been partly due to concerns about the environmental impact of cryptocurrency mining. China previously accounted for the largest portion of Bitcoin mining worldwide, but the country has recently started to crack down on miners which has impacted the overall crypto price.

The majority of these miners are now looking for new locations to set up shop. In North American, Canada is a top destination for cryptocurrency mining firms as more miners look to relocate to a country in North America that is more crypto-friendly.

Canada boasts less-hostile policies, affordable power rates, and a favorable climate. Since the mining hardware requires constant cooling, Canada’s cool weather slightly eases the cooling energy consumption.

During the crackdown, Canada’s BTC mining firms have experienced a jump in their overall output. Publicly traded BTC mining firm, Bitfarms, reported a 50% jump in BTC mined in one month alone. Bitfarms deploys hydroelectric power for its mining activities, which makes up 99% renewable energy for its operations. As the push for sustainability in the crypto sector continues, Bitfarms’ output will likely increase throughout the year.

Canada’s commitment to sustainability has seen the government invest in renewable energy sources. This will be a product in high demand by many cryptocurrency mining companies in the future.

Learning from the Not So Perfect

Canada’s crypto sector hasn’t been all perfect and the industry has had to learn from harsh past experiences.

One such event was when Canadian crypto exchange QuadrigaCX’s founder Gerald Cotten reportedly died in India. The death resulted in a US $190 million loss of users’ assets as Cotten had kept the assets in a cold (offline) storage, and only he knew the keys. A similar case was with Einstein Exchange, where users reported they could not access their assets, worth millions of dollars.

Both cases occurred in the same year and led to tighter measures to protect users against similar events in the future. Regulators have put up stricter policies, cracking down on non-compliant firms.

Canada’s crypto market has evolved since then, with exchanges deploying multi-sig wallets to prevent QuadrigaCX-like losses. In June 2021, OSC listed one of the world’s top five exchanges by trading volume, Bybit, as operating an unregistered crypto asset trading platform.

The Future of Crypto in Canada

The crypto landscape in Canada has a bright future given the more structured regulations regarding the sector’s operations.

Canada’s innovation in the industry has put it up among the top-performing environments for the crypto sectors worldwide. The crypto industry is still emerging, and regulatory frameworks must constantly adapt favorably to the market needs if Canada is to remain a top crypto destination.

The future impact of 5G in Canada will likely be transformative for crypto too. The execution of 5G will increase styles of administration influencing how mining is assembled and what Defi applications can be developed.

At the moment, ensuring the sustainability of cryptocurrency operations is among the top issues Canada will have to handle. As challenges evolve, Canada’s swift response will come in handy to establish a solid future for crypto in the country.

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Fx Analysis

Twitter CEO Reveals What Inspires Him to Support Bitcoin

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Jack Dorsey, the CEO of Square and Twitter, is one of several billionaires that supports and advocates for the crypto industry. In the past, Dorsey has shown signs of support by adding a Bitcoin emoji on Twitter, using Square to launch a Bitcoin hardware wallet, and he even made plans to move to Africa and work with its IT experts to make use of crypto and other technologies to start the process that will transform the continent.

This time, however, he decided to reveal some details about things regarding Bitcoin that are making him so supportive of the world’s largest cryptocurrency.

Dorsey speaks of Bitcoin during The B Word conference

Dorsey spoke about Bitcoin during a popular crypto conference known as The B Word. This is a well-known event hosted by the Crypto Council for Innovation, and it has attracted many influential speakers.

Dorsey said that the thing that really drove his thinking — the thing that drives his passion behind it — is a single question – “if the internet has a chance to get a native currency, what would that be?”

For Dorsey, the answer can only be Bitcoin. Bitcoin’s principles, resilience, use cases (such as helping the unbanked and supporting entire communities) are what makes him believe in Bitcoin and its potential. But, above all, Dorsey said that what shaped his view of Bitcoin and what made him so supportive of it is its network and its community. In fact, he said that the crypto community reminds him of the early days of the internet.

Why is Dorsey so supportive of Bitcoin?

This is also rather easy to see and understand. Many still remember the early days of the internet quite well, where talented developers were coming together to make this new thing a place that will offer an easy way for people around the world to connect, share ideas, information, and work for the betterment of the society as a whole. A similar thing is now happening with crypto, only this time, it is all about using the power of the community to help those who are financially struggling.

Billions of people around the world live in poverty, abandoned by banks just because they don’t offer institutions the ability to earn from them. The crypto industry is about empowering people like that. This is one of the reasons why Satoshi Nakamoto created Bitcoin in the first place, and this single goal has remained in the heart of the crypto industry to this day. Empowering people who do not wish to depend on the banks is what allowed DeFi to explode last year while empowering artists and collectors alike is what allowed NFTs to blow up in 2021.

This single goal is still pushing the industry forward, and Dorsey is completely fascinated by it. He said it himself, explaining that “It’s deeply principled, it’s weird as hell, it’s always evolving. It just reminded me of the internet as a kid.”

It is safe to say that Dorsey believes in the future of crypto, and he has high hopes for it. He even hopes that cryptocurrencies could help create world peace. He is aware that this won’t happen overnight — it is a long-term mission, but he still thinks it is possible.

He has been saying similar things for years now. One example is the Bitcoin 2021 Conference that took place only last month when he said that Bitcoin can change everything and that he honestly doesn’t think there is anything more important in his lifetime to work on. It is this thinking that inspired him to use Square to buy $50 million in BTC last year. He even announced that Square is continuing to push deeper into the crypto industry by creating a new business that will revolve around using Bitcoin to offer decentralized finance services.

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Fx Analysis

Chart Art: Trend Continuation Setups on USD/CAD and GBP/JPY

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Ready to start catching pips this week?

I’ve got a treat for ya as we explore not one, but TWO swing trend plays today.

Check them out!

GBP/JPY 4-Hour Forex Chart
GBP/JPY 4-Hour Forex Chart

I know we literally just talked about GBP/JPY’s downtrend last Friday but I thought y’all might want to know that the pound has hit a key resistance zone.

I’m talkin’ about the channel resistance, yo! Guppy has seen its first bearish candlestick after consolidating at the 152.00 major psychological area and 100 SMA.

Is a GBP/JPY a sell? Selling at current prices is a good bet if you think that the bearish divergence on the 4-hour chart will lead to GBP/JPY extending its months-long downtrend.

If the yen cross starts giving weird volatile moves, though, then you should be ready for a breakout that would take GBP/JPY to the 200 SMA or the 153.50 and 154.00 previous areas of interest.

USD/CAD 4-Hour Forex Chart
USD/CAD 4-Hour Forex Chart

Fib traders gather ’round! USD/CAD is consolidating around the 1.2575 zone that lines up with the 61.8% Fib retracement of July’s main upswing.

And if that’s not enough to get you writing trading plans, then you should know that USD/CAD’s current levels are also near the 4-hour chart’s 100 SMA and a trend line support that has been around since the start of June.

Is USD/CAD a good buy? Dollar bulls can buy at current levels and target July’s highs for a sweet risk ratio. Of course, the more conservative buyers can also load up on them longs as soon as we see a couple more bullish candlesticks.

If you’re not convinced that the dollar can extend its uptrend against the Loonie, then you can also wait for a clear break below the trend line support and then target previous areas of interest like 1.2440 or 1.2325.

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