This Week in Fintech ending 25 February 2022

This week our experts brought you the following insights based on their experience as investors, entrepreneurs & executives.

Monday Ilias Hatzis our Greece-based crypto entrepreneur (Founder & CEO at Kryptonio, a “keyless” non-custodial bitcoin and cryptocurrency wallet, that lets users manage bitcoin and crypto without private keys or passwords.) @iliashatzis wrote Laundering crypto is not a walk in the park

Crypto crimes are on the rise. Last year, scammers took home a record $14 billion in cryptocurrency. Criminals laundered $8.6 billion worth of cryptocurrency in 2021, up by 30% from the previous year, based on a report by Chainalysis. On February 8, the Justice Department announced that it seized more than $3.6 billion in stolen cryptocurrency linked to the 2016 hack of Bitfinex. The authorities arrested a New York couple, Ilya Lichtenstein and his wife Heather Morgan, on charges they were conspiring to launder billions of dollars in bitcoin. Money laundering is one of the most prominent activities in the crypto market. While these activities are on the rise, laundering crypto is not something new. Moving illicit funds to a safe place, so they can eventually be “cleaned”, has been the common goal for the majority of the cybercriminals dealing in cryptocurrency. But unlike traditional bank robberies with criminals anonymously moving cash and re-entering it back into the system in different ways, bitcoin never leaves the system, and transactions are publicly visible, so moving stolen coins poses a risk of revealing who is behind the heist.

Editor note: Ilias looks at the arms race between crypto laundering operators and law enforcement using data analytics. 

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Bernard Lunn, CEO of Daily Fintech and author of The Blockchain Economy wrote: Web3 Part 4 Hype waves go through a lot of turbulence

Inevitable does not mean imminent. It is inevitable that the decentralized Web3 will replace the centralized Web2, but nobody knows when this will happen – it is not imminent. Amaras law is still true; I have deep conviction on direction of travel, but I have no idea on the speed of travel.

Editor note: When all the chatter about Web3 is negative ie at trough of disillusionment, it may be time to buy your favourite crypto token. When everyone falls out of love with a sector, that can be the time to invest.

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Wednesday Alan Scott Managing Director EMEA at 24 Exchange @Alan_SmartMoney wrote his weekly snapshot of the news that matters in the Stablecoin market.

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Thursday

Rintu Patnaik, an Insurtech expert based in India, wrote: Life Insurance Corporation’s Initial Public Listing Is India’s Largest Ever

In 2019, Saudi Arabian Oil Co (Aramco) launched the world’s biggest Initial Public Offering (IPO). This enabled the Saudi government to raise $25.6 billion while diluting just 1.5% stake, at a valuation of $1.7 trillion. Soon, the Indian government plans to divest 5% equity for $8.7 billion in the insurance giant Life Insurance Corporation (LIC). LIC’s IPO is being viewed as India’s Aramco moment.

Editor note: India’s Aramco moment is a big deal because India’s equivalent to oil is brainpower.

Christian Dreyer @x3er, our Swiss based CFA who focusses on how XBRL changes our world wrote his weekly snapshot of the news that matters in the XBRL market.

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Friday Howard Tolman, a well-known banker, technologist and entrepreneur in London. wrote: his weekly snapshot of the news that matters in the Alt Lending market.

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Your Editor is Bernard Lunn. He is also the CEO of Daily Fintech and author of The Blockchain Economy and occasional opinion columnist.

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