KW 3: China is working on a global blockchain system, British hospitals use blockchain to track Covid vaccines, Bitcoin alternative Ethereum reaches all-time high


China is working on a global blockchain system: China’s Blockchain-based Service Network (BSN) – a permissioned blockchain network for building decentralized applications and tokens – plans on releasing a beta central bank digital currency (CBDC) as early as the second half of 2021, according to a blog post. The Chinese-state-sanctioned BSN is currently designing a universal digital payment network over the next half-decade. CBDCs from different nations will be supported by the network, the blog claims.

British hospitals use blockchain to track Covid vaccines: Two hospitals, in central England’s Stratford-upon-Avon and Warwick, are expanding their use of a distributed ledger, an offshoot of blockchain, from tracking vaccines and chemotherapy drugs to monitoring fridges storing Covid-19 vaccines. The tech will bolster record-keeping and data-sharing across supply chains, said Everyware, which monitors vaccines and other treatments for Britain’s National Health Service (NHS), and Texas-based ledger Hedera, owned by firms including Alphabet’s Google and IBM, in a statement.

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Bitcoin alternative Ethereum reaches all-time high: Ethereum dropped 8% on Wednesday after shooting past 1,430 dollars a day earlier, hitting a new all-time high for the cryptocurrency powering the world’s largest smart contract platform. Ether, the native cryptocurrency of Ethereum’s blockchain network, has soared 33% year-to-date to reach its latest peak, only a couple of weeks after its crypto cousin Bitcoin reached a new high near 42,000 dollars. The cryptocurrency has always been the lesser known rival to Bitcoin for a mainstream audience, according to Samantha Yap Founder & CEO at YAP Global.

Russian company joins RSBN blockchain: Norilsk Nickel, a Russia-based metals company, has announced it backs IBM’s Responsible Sourcing Blockchain Network (RSBN), which supports responsible sourcing and production in mining. The Russian nickel and palladium mining company said it would use RSBN to share data with selected members and keep a supply chain record of mineral production. The agreement would include the creation of metal-backed tokens on the global Atomyze platform that represents physical assets in digital form.

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The world’s largest crypto hedge fund Grayscale now owns around 3% of all Bitcoin in circulation worldwide.


Cardano: blockchain platform without weaknesses? The cryptocurrency Cardano claims to be free of the weaknesses that have plagued conventional blockchains. Cardano says it is designed according to scientific knowledge and thus offers its users high security and performance. But what is it? Cardano is a decentralized smart contract blockchain that sets itself apart from competitors like Ethereum by only developing its own technology further if this is supported by scientific research and peer review. A specially developed algorithm called Ouroboros is used to find consensus when validating new blocks. This is meant to make the high level of security of the algorithm mathematically verifiable. A responsible stakeholder is also drawn for the development of each newer block. As a result, the administration of Cardano should remain distributed and decentralized.

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Insolvent wallet providers‘ rights and obligations: The Covid-19 pandemic has affected the fintech industry as well. Bankruptcies cannot be ruled out, something that Monedo, formerly Kreditech, had to experience firsthand. Token providers and private token owners should therefore be warned. But what actually happens when wallet providers or other crypto custodians go bankrupt? In this case, it becomes particularly risky for owners of security tokens. These act as capital investments, very similar to securities, but are not documented by the actor who brings them into circulation. This makes it challenging to even provide evidence in a legal dispute that you ever owned the token. The protection in the event of an insolvency should therefore be rated as poor, at least in some token areas. Nevertheless, disaster can be avoided: Both the German government and the EU recently developed draft laws on a legal framework for electronic securities.


„It’s still nothing more than digital play money. The risk of it imploding remains. In the event of a loss of trust, there is nothing that could slow such a development.“
Economic expert Frank Bofinger renews his criticism of the cryptocurrency Bitcoin.


Man offers Newport council £50m if it helps find bitcoins in landfill: A computer engineer who claims he accidentally threw away a hard drive containing a virtual currency worth tens of millions of pounds has promised to give a local council a quarter of the fortune if they help him dig it out of a landfill. James Howells says the hard drive of his old laptop contains bitcoins worth about 200 million pounds but is languishing in a landfill site in Newport, south Wales. Howells says both he and the council will benefit if they allow him to dig for it but the local authority is refusing, claiming an excavation would break licensing regulations and cause environmental damage.

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