• theswissroadtocryp

The 5 Most Important Crypto Developments in Febuary 2022

[00:00:00] So, uh, they're saying if you fear any intervention by your government, please remove your coin from our custody. That was the message basically.


[00:00:19] Yes, it makes sense. Right.


[00:00:20] Welcome to the Swiss road to crypto monthly review for the month of February, 2022. I am joined as usual by Alex Poltrack co-founder of Hodling SA and by and by Mauro Cappiello co-founder of Blockchain Innovation Group. Hodling SA offers a completely non-custodial multisignature wallet solution for storing large amounts of Bitcoin for institutional holders, family offices, and individuals. Blockchain Innovation Group, enables companies to run their business faster, cheaper, and safer by using technologies like blockchain and distributed ledger technology.


[00:01:04] . In this episode, we will review major headlines in the month of February, 2022, relating to the following subjects; Bitcoin and censorship resistant money. The subject appear then headlines relating to Afghanistan, Canada and Russia. Headlines relating to regulation, AOPP and the travel rule.


[00:01:25] The headline relating to the fact that the four main accounting firms have added Bitcoin and Ether to their balance sheets. And finally, on my two favorite whipping boys of crypto in other words, Binance and Facebook. So good afternoon, gentlemen. Good afternoon, Alex.


[00:01:41] Good But afternoon Didier.


[00:01:43] Good afternoon Mauro


[00:01:45] hi, Alex.


[00:01:47] Okay, so relating to the first headline of financial censorship, let me read to you three headlines. The first one, maybe many people didn't see is that the United States has confiscated billions of dollars of money from the reserves of the central bank of Afghanistan.


[00:02:05] This might seem surprising, but I Afghanistan, central bank reserves have been kept in various US-based financial institutions as approximately $7 billion worth of total assets that belong to the Afghan central bank, but are held in the U S. President Biden signed an executive order, compelling all us financial institutions to transfer this property into a consolidated account, held at the federal reserve bank of New York.


[00:02:37] Approximately three and a half billion of the $7 billion in assets will be routed back to Afghanistan with the hopes of helping Afghan citizens and the remaining three and a half billion dollars worth of assets will be held by US governement and earmarked for victims of nine 11 terrorist attacks.


[00:02:57] I find that surprising because I think 11 out of the 14 terrorists were from Saudi Arabia, but nobody taken money out of the Saudi Arabia and central bank. That's a that's for sure.


[00:03:07] Well, the amounts will be quite more serious.


[00:03:11] I'm sure they would be, uh, let me read the two other headlines relating to financial censorship, and then we'll comment on all three of them. Uh, one effect for people who don't realize today, we're recording this today that Russia has attacked the Ukraine, but Russia has said to recognize


[00:03:30] crypto as a form of currency. Authorities in Russia are set to recognize digital assets, the form of currency, according to local news reports, the government and the bank of Russia have reached an agreement on how to regulate cryptocurrencies, but it doesn't say which one, uh, they are now preparing a draft law expected for February 18th, which will define crypto as an analog of currencies


[00:03:56] rather than a digital financial asset. And we know that the U S government had threatened Russia to exclude Russian banks from the Swift network, if, Russia invaded Ukraine and they just have today. So we'll see what happens there. Okay. Finally the last headline before we get into comments is that as you know, I'm Canada, so maybe the best Bitcoin advertisement in the world is coming from Canada and unexpected source.


[00:04:22] Over the last few weeks, the government of Canada has been embattled with, with various truckers. I think the origin of the problems were various COVID and measures taken by the government and had many truckers and many average people in Canada, opposed those measures. And then the government tried to seize and freeze bank accounts related to various people with the protests.


[00:04:45] And so then , the people that related to the protest tried to raise money with Bitcoin. And then the Canada's federal police is now forcing the regulated financial firms to cease transacting with freedom convoy. I think that's the name of the association of the trackers. Canada's federal police is now demanding that regulated financial firms, cease transactions with freedom convoy, Bitcoin address.


[00:05:12] And the Canadian government has, has demanded that crypto exchange not promote self custodial wallets, which of course it's the funniest thing you've ever heard. And then, , yesterday. Ontario uh, superior court of justice, sent Nunchuck, which is a software provider on order to freeze and disclose information about assets involved with this, uh, hashtag freedom convoy, which is related to opposition to the government and this Nunchuck company gave a fantastic answer, which is Nunchuck is self custodial collaborative multisig, Bitcoin wallet.


[00:05:52] We are a software provider, not a a custodial financial intermediary. Our software is free to use. It allows people to eliminate single points of failure. And store Bitcoin in the safest way possible while preserving privacy. We do not collect any user information beyond email addresses. We do not hold any keys. Therefore we cannot freeze user assets. We cannot prevent them from being moved and we do not have knowledge of the existence nature value and the location of our user's assets. This is by design. So of course it makes one laugh because it shows that the Canadian government has no idea what Bitcoin is and how it works.


[00:06:32] And they just got a quick lesson. So, now that we've mentioned the three major headlines, there's a lot to discuss. So who would like to go first? Alex, would you like to start.


[00:06:42] I'll start.


[00:06:43] backwards from the, from the Canadian story. Uh, It's made my day, actually, when they, read the answer from Nunchuck, I was really laughing because yeah it shows first of all, how the government don't don't have any clue or like any understanding in that. And even like suggesting to exchanges, not to promote self custodial solutions was kind of crazy.


[00:07:11] so, you know, we've, with Hodling we provide a very similar service to Nunchuck. We, we also provide self custodial multisignature wallets, and we would probably have to reply something very similar that we don't even know the addresses of our customers. We don't know if they are using or not the solution.


[00:07:31] And we don't know how many coins, uh, they are on their, on their address. Because basically when we don't have this information. Now, the interesting thing that happened is that some good exchanges, like Kraken, issued uh, like I believe Kraken CTO tweeted, uh, to suggest to the user is not to store money on, on Kraken not to store the coin on Kraken and to withdraw them as soon as you finished trading with them to withdraw them into self custody.


[00:08:10] Because, uh, the, the explanation was that if the government ask them to collaborate. They will have no choice to collaborate because they're licensed, regulated financial intermediary. So, uh, they're saying if you fear any intervention by your government, please remove your coin from our custody. That was the message basically.


[00:08:39] Yes, it makes sense. Right. And has Kraken not started or had to move out to Canada because they, they actually didn't get to the last two that they want to, uh, the one in New York. So obviously they are friends, I mean, they know each other quite well, if I'm not mistaken, Alex.


[00:08:56] Right. Do you recall that they started in Canada, right? Or went to Canada?


[00:09:02] Uh,


[00:09:04] Yeah. And I think this is obviously a good question for you. Well, Financial intermediaries and fully understand what Kraken and or Coinbase and all of them. They just, you know, somebody goes to them, squeeze them, and then they have to deliver. Um, now with software fully agree, it's different right now. Um, technically, could they, uh, prevent, uh, somebody to use the app because you know, shorter, not every everything is, uh, is kind of.


[00:09:35] Self costal. Clearly it will have to key. And you use the key somewhere else in another tool, but, uh, I guess from a software point of view, you probably could prevent some movements or not at all.


[00:09:48] The. Difficult. So there are different, uh, non-custodial solutions. There are some that still require centralized software,


[00:10:00] Right,


[00:10:01] and then you can go to the central software provider, tell him to seize, immediately doing whatever he does. Uh, but, uh, for example, both Nunchuck and Hodling , the solution that we provide the whole software.


[00:10:18] Is a free software open source software that can be downloaded independently. We don't provide the the software. And moreover, the software is interoperable written with open standards. So even if one software provider was told to stop distributing their free software, you could take an, any other software that implements the same standard.


[00:10:46] And I think this is quite important. The other question is obviously cloud-based right. So if people, I think there's a little bit miss cost conception, and Alex, you tell me if I'm talking, you know, alternate, but a lot of people think, you know, in the blockchain space where say, if everything is decentralized, but then, you know, everybody's.


[00:11:06] Uh, installing software on the cloud, right? It, as you, as you said, you know, if you don't know exactly what's on the cloud, then these guys could go to the cloud providers and knock down the cloud cloud providers.


[00:11:19] Exactly. So you need to, you know, there, it's not just white or black, it's, uh, there are many shades of gray and you need to know how much independent are your. Uh,


[00:11:35] Components.


[00:11:35] operational setup for, for your wallet. So, um, like most people who has, who have a Bitcoin wallet, they don't run their own full node. They connect to some server that will relay their transaction.


[00:11:51] So you can go to that server and say, stop, stop relating these people's transactions. So. So, yeah, usually, usually people who understand that they may be subject to some political pressure. They run their own nodes and obviously they have their own keys.


[00:12:13] If I may just interject two things , one is, there's a podcast where Alex and his co-founder Darko Gasic is a podcast in the library where people can get to know Hodling better and see how it works. And number two, but sort of the main advantage of a multisig is that what's your protection.


[00:12:33] If somebody puts a gun to your head and says, send me a, okay, now go on your private Wallens and your BTC. Uh, well with the multisig, you need more than one signature. So if you need, I don't know, three out of five signatures and somebody puts a gun to your head. That's not going to be enough to move the coins.


[00:12:49] You need a unique two other signatories, to have a gun to their head as well. And that's not much less likely. So for that's the main advantage security is the main advantage of a multisig. So, uh, if you, if you feel that need for security, you can go listen to the other podcast and get to know Hodling SA better.


[00:13:10] Alex you have linked to Russia. Russia recognizing digital assets and digital currency, the form of payments. Do you have any insights there?


[00:13:19] It's , it's a lot of different, very different camps who have very different, uh, incentives, let's say in this, uh, in this regard. So, uh, for now, what they are trying to build is a regulation where. Uh, Russia is a country can use Bitcoin to like, to mine it and to pay and to have financial interaction with other countries that may also be on US sanction lists. So to have these kind of international settlement system, which is independent of anyone's control. So this is something they understand and want to use. But at the same time, they try to prevent their own people from, uh, using Bitcoin for doing the same, basically. So it's, I, I'm not sure how, how it will unfold, but technically, uh, the, the only way to do it is to regulate exchanges, brokers, banks, so hard that basically all transaction become KYC visible. And if you have no caraway seed coin, you have no way to use them within the country. Where it's not working is that the country itself need those kinds of anonymous coins to interact with other countries. So we will see how unfolds.


[00:14:52] You think if the country if Russia the sovereign, I dunno, central bank or something has some BTCs that are not really anonymized and they want to exchange with China,


[00:15:02] no, no, no. What I'm saying is that they need to source these coins somewhere.


[00:15:08] Yeah.


[00:15:08] They need to source them one way to source them is to, uh, mine. That's the, probably the,


[00:15:16] the easiest. Yeah, yeah, exactly. Then, then you need, then you may, as a country, like as a national bank to buy some Bitcoin from your citizen by allowing them to exchange, but then you need to make the process a kind of smooth. Otherwise, people will not sell to the government, if they understand that they may, uh, have some, some troubles


[00:15:44]


[00:15:44] Okay. That, because a, they sell their coins to the government. So it needs to equally.


[00:15:53] Well, I think what you're saying also as, so you're saying basically the government needs to do AML on all these coins they get.


[00:16:03] Yeah, Uh, so they, they don't really care about AML themselves,


[00:16:09] what they care is to source the coins. But if all the banks are, uh, using like super strict AML, it will be very difficult for the government to source, uh, any quantity of BTC. Uh, now on, on Afghanistan. Quite surprised not to hear more about that, about that story. And, uh, I guess that many, many countries should really take this as a warning sign


[00:16:43] And consider gaining some, some independence.


[00:16:47] I was actually thinking. And now I remember I was kind of lost a little bit before, so maybe some of the federal banks are now thinking about putting part of their assets into crypto, right. To save it from the U S


[00:17:03] Of course, that's the, uh, that's what, that's what we'll see. Absolutely. We know Russia, for example, for, for years now used to own a lot of US Treasuries they've sold it. They, they issue almost no debt or have very little, probably in us dollars. So the, the Russian sovereign, the country has been trying to disengage itself completely from dollars for awhile, because, they've already gotten sanctioned


[00:17:26] in the uh, so the other countries are learning the same thing. And of course, for people who like Bitcoin as a censorship resistant money that increases human rights. Uh, the funny thing is we're getting the best lesson in the world from this from Canada, which is the country that people would have least expected it from.


[00:17:44] My last podcast was, with Anita Posch and her impressions of Bitcoin. And then in El Salvador, some of her impressions are positive. Some of them are negative. She's also quite critical in many ways. And, uh, who would have thought that the best advertisement for non-custodial self sovereignty and so come from Canada.


[00:18:06] We didn't see that one coming. So, Okay, moving on to, uh, things related to regulation because this month is all about regulation. Um, a fuss started on Twitter because, hardware wallet provider Trezor said they were going to integrate a function called AOPP address ownership proof protocol, and it got people upset and address owner.


[00:18:32] Poof protocol is basically protocol that allows you to sign a message. With a private key, but the private key that is created or used to produce a public address. Uh, so the public address in Bitcoin. So by signing a message, you were apparently proving that you were the owner of. The public address that you are, that you were asking that you want, when you want to receive Bitcoin, you need to provide public address.


[00:19:03] And you're proving that you're the owner of that public address. And, uh, that's what the AOPP protocol allows. It simplifies the process of signing a message, would that say public private T. And a lot of people got upset because they, it resembles a bit like, uh, censorship and tracking people around. And so.


[00:19:25] The Trezor that their community was upset and said that they would drop, uh, drop this.


[00:19:31] Um, okay. Alex, would you like to say why, first probably is make any sense, even if you really want to track people at all, because,


[00:19:41] Well, I'm, I'm more, uh, More divided on these topics so that the idea itself is maybe a good idea. It was very badly pushed into the ecosystem and, uh, I mean really pushed. Uh, so it was, I don't know the word in English.


[00:20:06] Yeah. Yeah, or gauchly or poorly done? Poorly executed. Yeah, not.


[00:20:12] It was very poorly executed, unfortunately, but the main idea behind it. So let's go pre- travel times because these, these kinds of proofs already existed before travel rule and the need for them existed before travel-rule. So in Switzerland for example, in Switzerland, we have, uh, something unique in Europe.


[00:20:37] We have Bitcoin ATM machines who allows you to buy and sell Bitcoin up to some limit. Currently it's up to 1000 per day without any Okay. And the way it was legally possible. Uh, well, well, there is legal and technical. Uh, the legally it's possible because, uh, the law in Switzerland allows, uh, tri- party transactions.


[00:21:09] KYC-less with, up to 1000, uh, CHF per day. Actually for fiat , it's even 5,000 per day. So, uh, if you experienced a change in Euro to CHF in the physical money exchange, they don't ask you your ID or any information up to 5,000, they don't have the obligation to ask you. Uh, so this is on the, on the legal side, on the technical side to do that, you need to prove that the it's not a


[00:21:44] money transfer from you in front of the machine to someone else who is not in front of the machine, you need to prove that, uh, the mission receives money from you and give you money the exchange money back to you. And for the machine, it was proved by, by doing everything on paper. You, uh, put paper money in like 100 CHF and the machine prints you


[00:22:11] the paper with QR-code of the private key, where the Bitcoins are, and you need to scan that, uh, paper to, to use the money. So of course later you can do the transaction, but it's you doing the transaction, not the money exchange. So that was, uh, how these proof of ownership was used on paper, uh, to prove stuff. And, uh, Bity , a company like.


[00:22:37] Uh, regulated broker, in Neuchatel where I worked previously, they extended these two online and allowed people to exchange online without doing any KYC. And the way implemented this precisely through proof of ownership on the receiving key. So on the sending key, you send, so you sign a transaction, you already prove the ownership.


[00:23:06] And for receiving, you also need to prove that you're the same person, uh, who owns the receiving account. And this is technically what allowed the. Uh, people to use this KYC-less exchange. Now that the problem is that it's extremely, extremely technical. Well, not, not, not for me maybe, or for some like hardcore Bitcoiners, but for normal users, it's very complicated.


[00:23:36] You need to take your wallet to go in to sub sub sub sub menu to find where the. Uh, there is these hidden functionality of signing a message, a text message, and you need to find them the corresponding address and with the key of this address to sign the message. So it was very manual and the AOPP, uh, protocol allows to automate all of this and to make it user-friendly.


[00:24:07] So, in a way it's a. Uh, but it was really poorly, uh, pushed into, into the wild and also the naming and the selling arguments were unfortunately regulatory, arguments, and also very badly interpreted. So they try to push them into more area where needed. So, this is why the community pushed back really violently saying that we don't want these chips. Uh, but I think it will come back in a slightly modified form


[00:24:45] Yeah. say my, my argument was, well, I want to send money to somebody else, I just get the other person to sign the transaction first. And example, if I'm providing the address of somebody else, and then I have to prove that I'm the owner of the, that address by signing this message.


[00:25:02] I just asked the person who gave me the public address, to sign that message. So on the one hand you can say it's not even effective, uh,


[00:25:09] yeah, this is, this is interesting. And so, um, it's about there's several sub topics in there. So, uh, main topic, financial and, uh, financial institutions who are regulated. They have to check if the. This is the content of trouble rule. They have to check that the wallet that they are sending you the withdrawel you control, uh, that wallet.


[00:25:41] So that's their legal obligation and there are many ways to do it. Uh, the. Are not necessarily cryptographic way. For example, some companies just putting their contract, that the clients sign when onboarding with the financial intermediary, the contract says that you should normally be drove to your own addresses and that you promise to redraw only to your addresses.


[00:26:11] So if you cheat, the financial intermediary has a, has a protection. They have the. That kind of de-responsabilize them and put the responsibility on you who cheated. Um, the same would be, uh, like the case you just described. If you, if you want the exchange to send to me instead of you and you ask me to sign a message where it's written that I'm Didier Borel and blah, blah, blah, and all this stuff.


[00:26:41] So obviously I could sign this message because they want the money and it will work, but. It's it's you and me who cheated. It's not the financial intermediary. So yeah, it was kind of chasing the wrong, the wrong problem. My opinion.


[00:26:59] Yeah.


[00:27:00] There's always a solution for these kind of things. Right.


[00:27:02] So I would say like these, uh, the idea behind AOPP. Uh, is I think a useful idea that will somehow survive in some form. Unfortunately, the way it was pushed was a little bit too much opportunistic, like, uh, looking for a way to force by law by saying, oh, this is mandatory. You have to implement. Anyway, they will come to you, the government forcing you to implement it.


[00:27:40] So take our, our nice software solution. Um, so I guess now that it really already had a very bad impact and very bad image, we need to let the, the sun kind of go down And.


[00:27:58] then things are calm , again, we can rediscuss what's the useful part of the proposal and cherry pick from there.


[00:28:06]


[00:28:06] The next headline, a coalition of us crypto firms unveil the travel rule compliance platform.


[00:28:15] A coalition of some of the US' largest crypto firms is rolling out a solution to heightened anti money laundering standards. The so-called travel rule, travel rule, universal technology, or trust allows crypto firms to securely collect and transmit customer data in accordance with the travel rule, uh, travel rule.


[00:28:38] If you like, let me just quickly read to you what it is. It basically means that the. Client's information travels from one exchange to another. So it requires both financial institutions and crypto companies otherwise known as virtual assets, service providers to collect personal data on participants in transactions exceeding $1,000 or euros.


[00:29:00] For financial institution and crypto companies, this means gathering the names and account numbers of both senders and recipients and, uh, and sending it to the other exchange. So basically the client's information travels from one place to another.


[00:29:14] So,, makes the whole idea of AOPP a sort of normal, or,


[00:29:20] this sounds even worse. This sounds even worse, right?


[00:29:24] Well, for me, it's just, the exchange is creating a standard by which they're going


[00:29:28] and not sure if it's a coalition of US crypto firms on wheel traveler compliance platform. Right. So they're going to aggregate all this information. Is it going to be, is it going to be on blockchain or is it going to be somewhere central?


[00:29:44] Right. And this is


[00:29:44] exactly that.


[00:29:46] both cases are, are bad cases. Uh, I mean on chain, it would still make it all completely public. So, uh,


[00:29:57] For example, we saw earlier that the central bank, the fed confiscated money from Afghanistan. So is this going to lead us to a second sense situation like that down the road? It's a


[00:30:06] Maybe not at least trying, you know, they're gonna, they're basically gonna hold everybody's, uh, everybody's transaction, you know, they have done. Maybe they can do that anyway, but, uh, and they can link it to an a name. Right. Correct. Alex.


[00:30:21] Yeah. Yeah, exactly. So, uh, it kind of helps too. Uh, associate the on chain analysis to, to real names, to de-anonymize the pseudonymous accounts.. But you know, what, what they announced was, about exchanging data between the financial intermediaries. We've put the wallets is the big, different story. It's when you, so when you wire from one exchange to another exchange from one custodial to another custodial, it's kind of normal that you have to exchange all the information on the client and both parties are regulated parties. It's kind of normal. It was forever. Well, not forever, but for a long time, the case already with banking and traditional finance. But here, what, what is different is that when I withdraw to my own wallet to myself, custodial wallet, the exchange is facing the problem.


[00:31:29] They need to prove that it's me withdrawing to my personal wallet and not transferring to someone else. And the easiest way to do it is the signature thing. So what, uh, AOPP integration into wallet was supposed to facilitate is, uh, the withdrawel from exchanges to your own wallet, proviing that it's not a transfer money transfer, but only a withdraw of your own money from the exchange.


[00:32:04] Uh, people who send, like, for example, me personally, sending money, sending coins from my self custodial wallet to Mauro's self custodial wallet. We have no obligation for using these kinds of services.


[00:32:22] But you can imagine, you know, um, it's a collection of names versus keys, right? And so that also means you can go and explore on the blockchain, this address, right. And you can match it to that name, you know, in these databases.


[00:32:42] Yeah, but that's unfortunately the contradiction we live in. If you want to go to a regulated exchange, a regulated exchange is going to have a name and they're going to be able to match your.


[00:32:50] That's why I'm saying again, having something embedded into the protocol, which, you know, we, obviously, there was a reason why the, you know, the private keys and public keys were used and so forth. If, if that can an extended, maybe a certain, um, you know, anonymity can be retained, right. Potentially.


[00:33:12] But this is already within the protocol. What they are trying to do is clearly to put a name on an address. And that's definitely outside of the scope, the protocol. And I just want to circle back to the, to, to Russia. And what I said about Russia will have difficulty sourcing coins because of their regulation is precisely about that.


[00:33:40] So


[00:33:40] What did you mean mean it precisely by


[00:33:41] people will just go completely dark.


[00:33:45] Completely dark, like, uh, using mixers and, uh, to, to, to gain some anonymity. But then that money is kind of incompatible to go back to the state because otherwise you would be able to de-anonymize.. So, so you never send your tokens through the. Not as stock statements, not as,


[00:34:09] yeah, because then you can go and get the history.


[00:34:12] So we're going to have two sets of coins. So you


[00:34:14] So you would


[00:34:15] so you feel of going down the road or you will have two sets of coins. There's the, there's the anonymous ones over


[00:34:20] here. And the, the, the de-anonymized addresses on the, over here.


[00:34:24] We already, have that. And, uh, for example, I can tell you that, uh, money from, for example, the big hack from, uh, Bitfinex , 2016, that coins were kind of unusable you, you need to remix them, uh, through. Like tons of mixers and try to minimize it. And because the amount is so big, it takes years to re-anonymize these coins.


[00:34:55] And actually it was quite easily de - anonymized, like the full chain altogether.


[00:35:02] Okay, moving onto the next headline. I found this one. Well, interesting. It's probably up your alley Mauro. Big four accounting firms purchased Ethereum and Bitcoin and put it on their balance sheet. And, , they said having gone through this process ourselves, we are confident we can guide clients and prospective clients through the pro process of crypto assets, treasury allocation.


[00:35:26] Our investment allows us to share, our journey, our experiences, our challenges with them so that we can help them navigate the crypto asset world. . K P M G established a governance committee to provide oversight and approve the treasury allocation.


[00:35:41] So basically they're saying now they have, uh, they have expertise to help their clients use the crypto currencies and put cryptocurrencies on their balance sheet. Go ahead, Mauro , tell us


[00:35:53] what you think.


[00:35:53] you know, as you said, first thing, which came to my mind is pure business development. Right.


[00:35:58] Maybe they should say how much they have one Bitcoin or. two Ether, They have that, that would be interesting to understand how much they have, but for me, yeah, it's also true, you know, I don't, I don't see that in the wrong way.


[00:36:11] Yes, they are so involved. I can see that daily when I work with, uh, blockchain companies or, you know, crypto compass or. Bank accounts in Switzerland, right? Uh, these guys, uh, you know, the big four are involved in everything. Uh, if you don't want to go to FINMA you go to these four, they write you up, you know, many documents, uh, legal memos, the, you know, whatever they, uh, review your.


[00:36:38] Uh, token sale, all these kinds of things. So they are in the mix of it. And this is probably a huge business for them, right. To get even more into this. I also know that I think it's actually a KPMG who is working, um, with the funds in different industry, right? There's a project called forms, DLT, where they are a stakeholder, they provide services.


[00:37:01] So, you know, Don't just, you know, they're not just doing today's business, they're becoming consultants, they're becoming, you know, uh, all kinds of things in there. Big company, solid it's big business. I can see that they want to do that. Not saying it's bad, it's just a little bit, you know, I think it's a little bit too much business development talk.


[00:37:20] Yeah, they're selling their own, uh, they're selling


[00:37:22] their own soup that's for sure. I'm sure they're making money hand over


[00:37:25] fist.


[00:37:25] Yeah,


[00:37:26] absolutely. You


[00:37:26] know, They become the cleaning machine, actually, Alex, they become


[00:37:31] another cleaning machine. I could tell you.


[00:37:35] Yeah. Yeah. But you know what? I'm, I'm quite positive about this development, uh, and it will help to, to push the ecosystem even more because for example, in, in Switzerland, Uh, we have this model of FINMA and self-regulate to the organizations, and I believe only tour free. Axeman free of these self regulated organizations are somehow crypto friendly,


[00:38:06] Yeah.


[00:38:07] but beside of being creeped, they're friendly, they're definitely crypto incompetent.


[00:38:13] Like they're not competent to conduct au audit on crypto for example. They don't know how to verify the cryptographic signature. So now the most, uh, big of this SRO, they kind of stopped doing the audit themselves and they say, okay, if you are in crypto, you want to be audited by us. You choose one of these big four.


[00:38:38] Or if you other providers that we trust, they audit you on the crypto side and we audit their audit. So it already kind of helped because I remember 2014, the first regulator who started to work 13 or 14, the first self-regulated organization who started to work with crypto. At some point they, they ask the company to go away to leave this regulator and to go be regulated somewhere else because they understood that.


[00:39:14] They take responsibility that they, where they don't understand the risks or any kind of proof. So they were just blindly signing.


[00:39:26] , so I think these, uh, the, the big fours being able to. To consult on these kind of aspects and especially on the audit parts. And the accounting is very, very positive development.


[00:39:41] Okay. And finally, these for lighter headlines to end up the, the monthly wrap. Cause my sort of two favorite whipping boys in crypto. One is Binance and one is Facebook.


[00:39:54] They're my favorite whipping boys for two different reasons. So Binance, uh, the crypto exchange Binance to invest $200 million in for Forbes,


[00:40:03] the magazine. The crypto exchange operator Binance holding is making a $200 million investment in the publisher of the Forbes magazine


[00:40:12] an unusual tie up between a digital currency firm , and a traditional media outfit. So I get a kick out of this because I always have the impression that Binance is, so incredibly profitable and, uh, their, their valuation on the private markets was around 90 billion, apparently. So they've, they've been trying to do this IPO for a long time to finally cash in


[00:40:35] on their incredibly profitable business. But every regulator doesn't like them because every regulator has, has doubts about how clean their business is.. So every regulator says, no, no, you're not up to par here. You can't do the IPO here. And then they go to the next regulator and something happens. So I have the impression that a they're trying to buy some soft power by buying a publisher and they'll try to come in that door.


[00:40:59] So that's, that's the, you know, the, the only time, you know, CZ was in a tie is when he was going around trying to sell his IPO. So that always, I always get a kick out of that. And then my other favorite whipping boy was Facebook. So they've given up on Diem and they've sold them the sale of their crypto.


[00:41:17] Payment network to Silvergate.. , I have to say also get a kick out of Facebook calling themselves Meta , like as if they've discovered the metaverse, which is what cyber space, which is what the internet or the information highway it's like, they're just rebranding this old concept into something, you know, new.


[00:41:38] It's a bunch of shit, because basically all the young people are going off Tik Tok and nobody cares about Facebook anymore. So, so I don't know. I don't know if either of you have any other comments to make on those doing.


[00:41:50] Wait a second. I knew that they stopped and that they wanted to sell. And it was already funny. But you were saying that someone actually bought it acquired.


[00:42:01] Exactly what they bought and how much they paid. We don't also Silvergate capital corporation will acquire the Diem payment networks, intellectual property and other assets. But I, but I have no amount, so we don't know how much that's valued at. Okay.


[00:42:19] So anyway, the intellectual properties, like patents only waiting for expiration nobody will use them until then.


[00:42:27] Okay, gentlemen, thank you very much. It was a pleasure to speak to you again, and we'll


[00:42:31] meet


[00:42:31] again in


[00:42:32] Thank you. Thank you. Have a good one.


[00:42:34] You too.


[00:42:36] Bye-bye.


[00:42:37] See you. Bye.



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Didier Borel - 00:00:06: Welcome to The Swiss Road to Crypto monthly review for the month of August 2022. I'm joined, as usual, by Alex Poltorak, co-founder of Hodling SA and by Mauro Cappiello, co-fo