Bitcoin Ponzi Scheme Perpetrator Fined $40 Million

A Texas man charged with defrauding consumers through an illicit investment vehicle has been ordered to pay more than $40m in fines by a federal judge. The Thursday ruling brought to close a case launched last July that drew headlines at a time when many in the mainstream US media were only…

Newly Launched Cryptocurrency Enables Financial Transactions via Twitter

NEW YORK, NY, September 18, 2014 /24-7PressRelease/ — The cryptocurrency universe has broken new ground, thanks to an innovative coin known as SocialxBot ( The currency is the first in history to use a Twitter bot that lets users send or receive cryptocurrency funds on the Twitter social networking platform.

M Scott Maxwell’s insight:

The cryptocurrency technology will allow anyone with a twitter account to send and receive funds securely, relatively anonymously and In a way that does not force either party to trust the other.  The transactions also cannot be repudiated, giving certainty that payment will be honoured.

Socialxbot is working in fertile ground here.  Firstly, Twitter been looking for ways to promote direct on-platform ecommerce for some time, last month announcing the role of of direct buy-now from tweets.

Secondly, in an increasingly packed altcoin field, finding a reason for existing is becoming difficult.  Socialxbot is certainly putting forward an offer that many may find valuable.

And finally, of course, is the reach that the platform immediately provides both in terms of installed base and low barrier to entry.  The cryptocurrency does not require any further installations or tech knowledge to use, beyond the use of their website.

One to watch.

Russia set to ban “surrogate” cryptocurrencies by 2015

Russia is set to become the latest country to restrict virtual currencies such as Bitcoin, after a top official announced that a law will be passed banning their exchange into real money by next sprin

M Scott Maxwell’s insight:

This follows the Russian Central Bank’s recommendation that Russians be “wary” of using cryptocurrencies back in January.  The ban appears to outlaw the exchange of cryptocurrencies to Rubles rather than the use of unexchanged cryptocurrencies.  

“People can play with their chips, and they can call them money, but they can’t use these surrogate currencies as tender.”  
Deputy Finance Minister Aleksey Moiseev

Curiously, Russian law-makers are citing Europe as the thought-leaders, saying that they are taking their lead from the positions laid out by the Bundesbank and the European Central Bank.  However, neither have called for a law of this sort, stating instead that they had concerns and were holing a watching-brief.