Blockchain 2020: What’s Next?
Blockchain technology is becoming more mature as we enter 2020. Cryptocurrencies are settling down and becoming more mature. There are more coins and ledgers utilizing blockchain as a core technology for maximum security.
Transactional blockchain networks are also becoming more common. You can still pay for products using Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, and all payments are processed faster and more efficiently than ever.
It is, however, interesting to see where blockchain technology will be implemented next, especially in 2020. So, what’s next for blockchain?
Edutech on Blockchain
The most immediate trend of blockchain utilization is affecting the education industry. Top names such as Suffolk University are already making their programs available online. You can, for example, pursue healthcare management degrees through online MHA programs.
The availability of online programs and degrees means a switch to a blockchain-powered education network is only a step away. Since blockchain provides ledgers with high integrity, elements of the online courses (i.e. grades, exam results, assignments, etc.) can be stored in a blockchain network.
Blockchain may also influence other parts of the education landscape. Among the most popular scenarios of implementation are:
- Using blockchain to store grades and exam results for students in public and private schools
- Blockchain powering the distribution of course materials and entire online learning platforms
- Education information security being enhanced using blockchain’s distributed nature
- The implementation of blockchain to decentralize education entirely
These may seem like big steps for edutech, but they are steps that some have already taken. It is only a matter of time before blockchain becomes a crucial technology for education.
Blockchain for Healthcare
Blockchain has some characteristics that make it fit the healthcare industry perfectly. The decentralized nature, the particular attention to security, the way blockchain maintains the integrity of stored information, and the flexibility of blockchain networks make the technology the perfect solution for electronic medical recordkeeping.
Today, healthcare institutions rely on cloud servers or on-premise hardware to store EMRs. Unfortunately, despite the high HIPAA security standards, the approach still presents some serious and unmitigated security risks.
Blockchain eliminates those risks completely.
- Instead of being stored in a database, EMRs are stored in a network without a single point of failure
- Stored EMRs can be tracked down to the very first entry with blockchain’s ledgering approach
- Blockchain itself is more efficient, which means it will lower the cost of maintaining large volumes of EMRs over time
Blockchain-Based Single Identity
Speaking of EMRs and personal information, there are talks about using blockchain to power a single-identity system in several countries. Japan and South Korea are the closest to a real implementation, but other countries also consider the flexibility of blockchain as appealing.
The banking industry is looking at blockchain for the same reason. By establishing a single customer identity and using blockchain to log transactions, better data integrity can be maintained for years to come.
Which of these possible implementations are the most exciting to you? The possibilities are endless for blockchain as a technology. Expect to see 2020 as the year when blockchain becomes more common in more industries.
New Israeli Bill Proposes to Consider Bitcoin as a Currency and Not an Asset
A newly-proposed bill with the legislative branch of the Israeli government Knesset submitted several changes to Bitcoin’s taxation. Instead of viewing BTC as an asset and subjecting sales to capital gains tax of 25%, the new legislation plans to recognize it as a currency.
New Proposal: Bitcoin As a Currency Not An Asset
According to a local publication, four representatives from the Yisrael Beiteinu party have presented the new bill on Tuesday. It seeks to amend the taxation of activities related to cryptocurrencies by altering the Income Tax Ordinance to view them as currencies for tax purposes.
Currently considered and recognized as assets, the sales or conversions of digital assets such as Bitcoin subject them to capital gains tax (25%). It provides taxation relief on capital gains only for short-term lenders and certain bonds-related activities as they are taxed at 15%.
However, the four reps argued that the perception of virtual assets needs reexamination. They reasoned that while cryptocurrencies are a relatively new concept, the Income Tax Ordinance hasn’t been amended in years and is falling behind the emerging new digital reality.
The four reps urged Israel to be “among the leaders” of the virtual currency field, whose merits are emphasized during this period of uncertain economic future.
Amendment In Reporting Of Digital Assets
The Knesset saw another bill proposing changes in regards to cryptocurrencies. This one sought to enable reporting of digital assets once every six months or once a year.
If accepted, this would be a significant change from the current format that requires cryptocurrency sellers to submit a tax report to authorities within 30 days of the transaction. Additionally, people need to pay an advance on the tax rate applicable to the transaction’s capital gains.
The explanatory memorandum of the proposed bill reads that “the Minister of Finance, with the approval of the Knesset Finance Committee, may accept cases in which an annual or semi-annual reporting obligation applies to property types. The submission of the report will be paid in advance in the amount of tax applicable under the provisions of the Ordinance on capital gains due to a sale.”
Manny Rosenfeld, Chairman of the Israeli Bitcoin Association, asserted that these proposed bills could enable the country to surface as a global financial center and a leader in the cryptocurrency field.
Failed Bitcoin deal lands two Indians in police custody
Two Indian nationals, Ramesh Reddy and his friend Prabakaran are now in police custody. The duo was arrested for overreacting, to the extent of threatening and extortion, because of a failed Bitcoin deal. A local news outlet, New Indian Express, reported the incident on Thursday. Fake Bitcoin deals As the local police narrated in the […]
Two Indian nationals, Ramesh Reddy and his friend Prabakaran are now in police custody. The duo was arrested for overreacting, to the extent of threatening and extortion, because of a failed Bitcoin deal. A local news outlet, New Indian Express, reported the incident on Thursday.
Fake Bitcoin deals
As the local police narrated in the report, Ramesh, who is a distributor of Ayurvedic medicines in Bengaluru, was contacted by an alleged fraudster, who only introduced himself as Naresh. He claimed to be in possession of Bitcoins worth about $4.4 million (Rs 33 crore). However, he told Ramesh that those funds are in the United States, and will give him a commission if he could help him (Naresh) move down the funds to India.
Adyar DCP V Vikraman precisely noted that “he [Naresh] promised 50 percent of that money to Ramesh, only if he found a person who could convert the online currency into Indian Rupees.” At that point, Ramesh reached out to his real estate friend, Prabakaran, on how to execute the Bitcoin deal. They later contacted and persuaded a Chennai-based techie, Mohan, to help them withdraw the funds to Indian.
Ramesh and his friend promised Mohan a one percent commission (i.e., Rs 33 lakh or $44,656) to open an e-wallet through which Bitcoins will be transferred. The money couldn’t be transferred to Indian directly because since it was in the United States, so Mohan had to create an account in the UK to moved to withdraw the money from there. However, the whole effort to execute the Bitcoin deal went sour as the money suddenly vanished, without reaching the UK nor reverting.
A sad ending
Mohan then realized that the e-wallet accounts, ‘Swift Global Pay’ and ‘Insta Merchant Pay,’ were fraudulent. Naresh, who made this entire proposal, was a fraud.
the DCP added.
Both Ramesh and Prabakaran didn’t believe the outcome of the Bitcoin deal, so they began threatening Mohan, who had to repay them the missing money from the money he borrowed using his wife’s jewels. Even at that, the duo continued threatening Mohan, who later reported them to the police, leading to the arrest of Ramesh and his friend.
Bitcoin Could Remain Slow Until the November Election
Bitcoin is presently trading for about $10,500, which is roughly $100 more than where it’s stood over the past few days, but it’s not quite where we’d like it to be. The fact is that bitcoin hit $11,000 again about 72 hours ago and has failed to keep up that momentum.
Bitcoin Is Struggling as of Late
There are many things that appear to be affecting bitcoin, one being the correlation between it and the stock market. As stocks are taking massive tumbles, bitcoin is also suffering, and so long as company shares continue to drop, the bitcoin market is going to remain in a bearish state.
There’s also the current political scene. As we all know by now, 2020 is an election year. There is just a little over a month left to go before America selects its next president for the next four years. Will the democratic contender Joe Biden come out on top, or will Donald Trump emerge as the country’s president through 2024? Either way, the situation is leading to heavy uncertainty throughout the nation, and many people don’t quite know how to react.
In addition, the death of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg is also adding to the concern and worry that are allegedly permeating people’s thoughts regarding the economy. Guy Hirsch – the managing director for cryptocurrency exchange e-Toro – explained in a recent interview:
Uncertainty around the election and in the aftermath of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s death has caused a panic in equities markets. When traditional assets nosedive as they have today, traders will often liquidate a broad cross-section of holdings while they try to cover liabilities, thus leading bitcoin to drop even more sharply today than any of the major equity indices in the US.
John Todaro – the director of institutional research at Trade Block – appears to agree, though he commented further that the continual drop of standard assets could potentially help bitcoin’s reputation further. With everything else in the red, people may turn to bitcoin as a hedge tool, and bitcoin could potentially return to form in the coming months.
You are seeing this spread across markets, including in digital currencies. Despite this drop, especially if uncertainty continues and markets become even more nervous about how the US election will play out, it makes sense if bitcoin were to see a significant recovery as equities continue to experience downward momentum.
Will Things Fix Themselves Over the Next Few Months?
Joe DiPasquale – CEO of Bit Bull Capital – mentioned that while the correlation between stocks and crypto has grown, he’s confident bitcoin and digital currencies have what it takes to break away and potentially enter bullish territory all on their own. He says:
While bitcoin’s correlation with the S&P 500 grew notably in recent months, the digital asset space remains highly volatile and able to decouple from traditional assets equally fast.
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