A roundup of the week’s crypto news, with regulators coming down hard on Tornado Cash, a date for the Ethereum Merge, and Mike Novogratz’s musings on his triumphantly horrific LUNA tattoo.
OFAC come down hard on Tornado Cash
One of the week’s biggest developments saw the US Office of Foreign Assets Control bring their highest level of sanctions down on Tornado Cash, accusing the currency mixer of helping North Korean hackers to launder stolen money. The ramifications of this move, even for individual traders that had only minor interactions with the protocol, are huge.
The (supposedly) decentralized derivatives exchange dYdX was one of the first protocols to block user funds that had any historical association with Tornado Cash, alongside fellow US-based crypto companies Circle and GitHub. The fallout on crypto Twitter has been preidctably ferocious, with arguments that the blacklisting of neutral lines of code constitutes an assault on freedom of speech.
In the latest developments, a 29-year old was arrested in Amsterdam this morning on suspicion of being a developer for Tornado Cash, and the Tornado Cash website is offline.
And in other regulation news, Coinbase confirmed in its quarterly report this week that the SEC has numerous investigations open against the company, including an inquiry into its staking products.
The week in Web3
In Web3 and development news, the Ethereum Merge now has a tentative date of September 15th. The last of a series of test runs has been successfully completed, so there’s a chance that the famously tardy “Ethereum 2.0” could actually stick to the date this time.
Galoy, a startup bridging a US dollar payment network to Lightning Network, has announced the introduction of Stablesats - a synthetic USD product backed by bitcoin. Stablesats-enabled wallets on Lightning will allow users to send and receive money in a USD account alongside their default Bitcoin account.
And the Cosmos ecosystem is expanding out into the multiverse, with 75 apps up and running on the network. Cosmos community member @Thyborg_ regularly updates a curated list of active projects that are building on the blockchain. Click here for our digest of some of the most promising Cosmos apps!
And finally…howlingly bad tattoos are there to teach us humility
Crypto perma-bull Mike Novogratz might regret his infamous LUNA tattoo, but he seemingly has no plans to remove it, saying that the descpicably kitsch artwork will serve as a constant reminder “that we’re not always right”.
Funnily enough, the tattoo, which Novogratz first posted on Jan 5th, almost perfectly coincided with the all-time market top for LUNA.
So if it should so happen that Microstrategy perma-bull Michael Saylor gets a tattoo of a topless Vitalik howling at the moon, it might be time to dump hard on your ETH.
The crypto markets may be risky, but they sure know how to blow a mean trumpet. Click here for our top 3 most overhyped cryptos ever.
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