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Q&A: How Blockchain Could Transform the Art Industry

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4ARTechnologies

The art world has had a tough time lately. The coronavirus pandemic has forced many galleries and museums to close, with sales of premium pieces also affected.

But there could be a solution that helps the industry get back on its feet and achieve much-needed digitization: blockchain. Here, we talk to Niko Kipouros, founder and CEO of 4ARTechnologies, about how this technology could transform the way we purchase and own artwork — and even ensure that the provenance and authenticity of masterpieces are never doubted.

1. What are the biggest challenges facing the art industry right now?

The surge of the COVID-19 pandemic shuttered galleries and museums, while exhibitions, art fairs and auctions have either been postponed or moved online. The art world ground to a halt. It became immediately visible that all players in the art market are vulnerable to physical distancing measures implemented to slow down the spread of the pandemic. If people are not allowed to leave their homes or attend big events, then what is left of the business models of exhibitions, art fairs and auctions?

Everyone in the industry is now aware that the art market as we know it will never return. Digital tools can help us overcome restrictions on physical operations.

2. Can blockchain solve any of these issues? Does the art industry really need blockchain?

Blockchain opened the space within the existing art system. What blockchain brings to the art industry is unprecedented security and accountability, along with introducing decentralization on an institutional level.

Operating in the sphere of art, blockchain allows for the decentralized, immutable storage of data and documentation while enabling the automation of many daily art handling tasks.

The technology can’t do it alone, but it provides a secure, verified information foundation on which solutions and services can be built.

3. How does the tokenization of art work? Does this mean that an everyday consumer could partly own a renowned masterpiece?

The tokenization of an asset — in our case, an art piece — makes it available to be traded and handled digitally. Artworks can be tokenized in two different ways: either a single token per art object or multiple tokens to allow for fractionalized ownership.

The single token option is only relevant for art collectors and those who want to better manage their collection. Far more groups, from the arts as well as the finance industry, are exploring the creation of a larger number of tokens for a single artwork.

The excitement there is based on two important aspects. For one, it allows previously untradable artworks to be made available to the art market, which is especially beneficial to public institutions that continuously lack funding.

Even more interesting, an artwork can be owned by a large number of people through blockchain-based tokenization, making art and art collecting far more accessible and more democratic.

These digital frameworks also allow for completely new ways to own and enjoy art. 

In a pilot project of ours known as ARTCELS, tokenholders gain access to enjoy and share the tokenized collection in a virtual reality showroom within the 4ARTapp. We are seeing a surge in demand for these models, and we are certain that in the future, many collectors will only hold a portfolio of artwork tokens — a purely virtual collection.

Why have one piece of art on your wall when you can choose from the whole collection and enjoy it the same?

4. What else can be digitized in the art industry?

The art industry is ripe for digitization. Most of the business is still done as it was 30, 40, or even 50 years ago.

Registering artworks, creating artist catalogs, condition reporting, updating or transmitting documentation, and tracking movements: All the processes that are part of the logistics chain in the art industry can be digitized.

As we have seen in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, even major international exhibitions can be digitized. The art world is in urgent need and just waiting for creative solutions.

5. What about cryptocurrencies? Are they part of this digitization?

Cryptocurrencies offer qualities that a global market like the arts always requires: fast peer-to-peer transactions, little regard for borders and minimal losses. They also solve the double-spend problem to facilitate transactions that were previously secured by more complex, expensive escrow solutions. Or you can create automatic participation models for artists, content creators and communities so they get reimbursed for their efforts.

In the future, we will also support peer-to-peer 4ARTcoin transactions, including artwork purchases, within the 4ARTapp. Even more important are our campaigns to have other networks, galleries, museums, exhibitions and online platforms accept the 4ARTcoin. As with all of our efforts, while we may believe very strongly in its advantages, we require partners and like-minded innovators to make it happen.

6. Blockchain is difficult for many to understand. How does 4ARTechnologies plan to achieve mainstream adoption?

As with all new technologies, especially revolutionary ones, it is not necessary for users or customers to understand how they work in full detail. Very few know how most everyday devices really work, be it microwaves, cars, the internet or even currency.

What adopters of a technology are interested in are the benefits — how these innovations can provide new possibilities and solutions.

The technologies, including blockchain, that our company is deploying are cutting-edge and very complex, but the benefits — being able to store information and documents immutably, being able to automate and simplify daily tasks, and being able to communicate and transmit information securely — are easy to understand and will bring about mainstream adoption.

7. There used to be a plethora of blockchain projects in the art industry. Many of them have already disappeared. How do you set yourself apart from the competition?

Previous ventures had two major issues: a lack of reliable artwork identification and a small scope for their solutions. A digital certificate or document is essentially useless, with or without blockchain, if it cannot be directly and reliably linked to the physical artwork.

This is the first roadblock that kept other ventures from finding acceptance and success.

With the 4ARTapp, we have implemented this functionality in a way that can’t be manipulated and that does not require the object to be marked with a sticker or chip. 

If you have ever seen an art forger at work, these things would never stop them.

With our solution, we use the artwork itself as the key to its documentation and history.

To gain adoption within the art world, solutions need to be wide ranging and usable by many. Most have only focussed on the collector, and some on logistics, but essentially none on the artists. We offer benefits to all art world participants, with increasing value the more the 4ARTapp is used.

Connecting the global art community is the next big revolution, and we are happy to lead the way!

We are proud to say that 4ARTechnologies has been recognized for its vision in both the “CV VC Top 50 Report,” which lists top blockchain projects in Switzerland’s Crypto Valley, as well as in the “CV VC Global Report” as the number one blockchain project in the art industry. On Sept. 02, I will take part in a panel discussion organized byCV VC, which will be livestreamed, on the topic of how blockchain is shaping the art industry.

8. How does 4ARTechnologies’ plan for insurance work?

We have been in partnership with Munich Re, the world’s largest reinsurer, and its subsidiary Ergo Insurance for over a year. The goal of our pilot project is to create wholly new, purely digital solutions for artwork and transport insurance, based on our verification and condition reporting technologies.

Through their utilization, the individual or company looking to insure their artworks can do so quickly, easily and specific to their requirements. The insurer can significantly reduce the structural costs associated with art insurance and therefore offer far more attractive rates and services.

To give you a simple visual: An art collector uses their mobile device and the 4ARTapp to scan the microscopic surface structure of an artwork once per year. That detailed condition report, which takes mere minutes, is sent over to the insurer with all the relevant documentation within the 4ARTapp, quickly and highly securely.

The insurer does not have to use expensive experts to evaluate the condition and risk factors, rather they can do so automatically. The immense cost savings can be offered to the client in the form of favorable rates or other incentives.

The client has a better service at lower costs, and the insurer has far more accurate data on which to base its risk evaluation — a win-win situation through digitization.

9. Counterfeiting and establishing the authenticity of artworks have been big challenges for the art world. What does this platform do to address that?

The challenge of art forgery is what brought blockchain to the attention of the art world. However, without a secure link between the physical artwork and the digital information, blockchain alone cannot solve that challenge.

This is why we have developed our patented Augmented-Authentication-Technology. 

With our technology, everyone can easily and quickly create a digital fingerprint for an artwork, using nothing but a mobile device and the artwork itself.

With the identification being fast and absolutely tamper-proof, we can begin to use the capabilities provided by blockchain.

What we, or anyone, cannot solve is questionable authenticity for older artworks.

However, we have now initiated a new era of digital provenance, one where artists can register their works themselves and create a reliable, highly detailed, lossless history from the very first minute of the artwork’s existence.

For artists of today and tomorrow, the question of originality will no longer be relevant.

10. As blockchain and crypto become more widely used, where do you think the art industry will be in 10 years?

Blockchain offers a new platform for working with traditional art. This, to me, looks like a very promising partnership.

What’s more interesting and challenging is to think about what blockchain has to offer to contemporary and digital artists interested in code and data. How can it deal with new questions of authorship, copy, identity and so on?

Questions of society are always reflected and discussed in art. I am looking forward to trying to bridge this gap, and blockchain technology gives us the tools to do so.

Disclaimer. Cointelegraph does not endorse any content or product on this page. While we aim at providing you all important information that we could obtain, readers should do their own research before taking any actions related to the company and carry full responsibility for their decisions, nor this article can be considered as an investment advice.

Source: https://cointelegraph.com/news/qa-how-blockchain-could-transform-the-art-industry

Blockchain

Huobi Guide & Exchange Review: How to Trade Options, Futures, and Perpetual Swaps

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Founded all the way back in 2013, Huobi Group is one of the leading blockchain companies in the industry.

It’s safe to say that the company has come a long way since then and it’s currently offering a variety of services for its wide user base. Employing people globally, Huobi offers a myriad of crypto-related services, including digital asset trading, wallet, mining pool, incubation, research, proprietary investment, and so forth.

Cryptocurrency trading has surged in interest throughout the past few years and exchanges such as Huobi have worked hard to expand their offerings. Derivatives products, apart from traditional spot trading, have exploded in interest, and Huobi is doing its best to accommodate.

Among its popular trading products are the futures, perpetual swaps, and options platforms. In this guide, we will take a closer look at how these tools operate and provide a step-by-step explanation of how to use them.

Quick Navigation:

Huobi Futures

UI/UX 10.0
Security 9.2
Coin Variety 10.0
Liquidity 10.0

Pros

  • Simplified trading interface with a variety of features, veteran exchange
  • One stop shop for trading futures, options, and perpetual swaps
  • An abundance of trading pairs to choose from

Cons

  • Limited assets for perpetual swap trading
  • Verification is mandatory for Huobi Futures

How to Register on Huobi?

Before anything else, however, you’d first have to register for an account. The process is fairly simple. There’s no mandatory Know-Your-Customer (KYC) procedure for spot trading, but if you want to start using the derivatives platforms, the ID verification is obligatory.

This is how the registration screen looks like:

Huobi_1

All that is needed here is an email address that has to be verified through a verification code later on.

Once you have your account opened, it’s highly recommended to take a few additional security steps. First, it’s important to enable the Two-Factor Authentication (2FA), using the Google Authenticator app.

In addition, Huobi has taken a few extra steps that protect your account in the event of it being hacked such as email verification codes, phone verification codes, a designated fund password to ensure fiat asset security, and so forth.

If you want to trade on the derivatives platform, you’d have to go through an additional ID verification step which requires you to input your names, a government-issued passport, driving license or ID number, and upload a picture of it.

We’ve completed all the steps and, in our experience, the process was seamless and the KYC took no more than a few minutes to be completed and approved by Huobi’s team.

How to Deposit and Withdraw Funds?

Now that you have your account set up, it’s time to load it with some funds. Depositing is fairly straightforward and users can choose between a myriad of cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin, ETH, USDT, and many others.

From the top navigation bar, you need to hover over “Balances” and choose the account you wish to fund. Regardless of where you deposit initially, you can easily transfer the funds between the accounts – it’s instant.

Huobi_2

After you select the cryptocurrency you want to deposit, all you need to do is click on the “deposit” button, which will pull up this screen. In this case, we’ve deposited the stablecoin USDT.

Huobi_3

In any case, regardless of the cryptocurrency you deposit, make sure to correctly select the transaction network (when applicable) – in our case, we used USDT on Ethereum’s ERC-20 standard.

From here, you can make quick, zero-fees transfers between the different internal accounts and fund your derivatives one. All you need to do is open the account, select the currency that you want to transfer, specify the amount, and confirm the operation:

Huobi_4

Once this is done, you are ready to begin using the offered derivatives products. Let’s have a look at all of them.

How to Trade Bitcoin Options on Huobi?

Options contracts are one of the most popular derivatives, used constantly in traditional finance. Lately, there’s a huge demand for cryptocurrency options as well. However, keep in mind, derivatives and options are not recommended for beginners as they carry more risk.

Huobi Futures has a dedicated options platform where currently users can trade both Bitcoin and Ethereum options. In this guide, we will focus on Bitcoin.

By definition, an options contract represents an agreement between two parties to facilitate a transaction on the underlying asset (in this case – Bitcoin/USDT index), at a preset price (known as the Strike Price), prior to the expiration date.

Purchasing a CALL option means that the buyer has the right to buy BTC corresponding to the contract face value at the strike price. On the other hand, a PUT option means that the buyer has the right to sell BTC under the same conditions.

In the below example, we will show how you can buy a CALL contract on Bitcoin and all the necessary details. First, when you land on the Huobi Options trading platform, that’s what you will see: Huobi_5

In the top left corner is where you select the type of Bitcoin options contract you want to trade with. For this example, we’ve used the Weekly BTC contract with a strike price of $8,500 and expiry on September 18th, and a leverage level of 5x.

Below is the board where you can monitor the prices for the different contracts based on their strike price factor.

As can be seen in this example, our contract costs around $2,400 to buy (bid). Huobi uses a system where traders can open positions based on contracts, where one BTC options contract equals 0.001 BTC or about $10 at current rates, as of writing this guide.

The par-value for a contract of ETH option equals 0.01 ETH, or about $3 at current rates. Unlike other margin exchanges, users can join options trading on Huobi with fairly low entry barriers.

Now, let’s see how to open a CALL position, as we assume the price of Bitcoin will close above the strike price of $8,500 on September 18th.

Huobi_6

From the order menu, we’ve selected a price that we want to buy the contract at – it’s $2414 and the number of Contracts that we want to purchase, in this case, it’s the maximum amount of 25 contracts, which is about $250.

As soon as we hit the Buy Call button, our Limit order will be placed and when the Mark price of the contract reaches it, the order will be executed and we will have 25 Contracts ($10 each) giving us the right to buy Bitcoin at $8,500 (strike price) when the contract expires on September 18th.

If the price of Bitcoin is above $8,500, we will realize a profit, if it’s below that, we will lose the options premium.

Below is our open position – we managed to get in at a price of $2,459 – and we got 24 contracts open. Below the order box is where you can track your positions and their performance. Huobi_7

If you want to close the position, you can specify the price at which you want to close and the overall amount of your position that you want to close.

Now, in this example, we’ve only shown how to buy a CALL option for Bitcoin, but users can also buy PUT options and they can sell contracts as well. For detailed information on how to do those operations, you can check the official guide.

How to Trade Bitcoin Futures on Huobi?

Moving on, Bitcoin futures are also available on Huobi. Here, users can buy these contracts and speculate on whether or not the price of Bitcoin will be above or below the current price on a pre-set date.

Huobi_8
Huobi Futures interface

From the left pane, users can choose from a verity of the over 60 cryptocurrencies and the available futures contracts. For Bitcoin, Huobi offers weekly, bi-weekly, quarterly, and bi-quarterly contracts, and supports leverage up to 125x.

Basically, if you believe that the price of Bitcoin will be higher than the current price at the expiration date of a given contract, you should open a long (buy) position. If you think it’s going to be lower, you should open a short (sell) position.

How to Trade Bitcoin Perpetual Swaps

Perpetual swaps are probably the most popular cryptocurrency derivative instrument. They are like traditional futures with the exception that they don’t have an expiry date. In other words, traders can open and close them whenever they want to.

Huobi_9
Huobi Perpetual Swaps

It’s worth noting that Huobi even offers USDT/USD perpetual swaps with leverage of 1X -1000X, becoming the industry pioneer in USDT derivatives.

Besides, for the non-stablecoins,  traders can use perpetual swaps with extremely high leverage of up to 125X for BTC swaps and 75X for other swaps. In other words, you can open a position worth 125 times the amount you have in your account.

Huobi Futures offers different leverages such as 1x, 3x,5x,20x, 125x, and even 1000x. Users can choose freely according to their needs.

While this brings opportunities for big profits, please be aware that it’s also extremely risky as the slightest movement in the opposite direction of your position can liquidate your position, causing you to lose your capital. Using high leverage is definitely not recommended for inexperienced traders.

Customer Support

Huobi’s overall customer support is very satisfying. From our test experience, the team is very responsive and easy to communicate with.

Elsewhere, the KYC verification process is particularly quick. After we submitted the documents needed for the identity verification, the team took no more than a few minutes to have them checked and approved the account for trading.

Security: Is it Safe to Trade on Huobi Futures?

Huobi is one of the largest cryptocurrency exchanges in the world. It’s an established company with thousands of employees. While it’s never recommended to keep a large amount of crypto in an exchange, Huobi is regarded as being very safe to use.

The team has also added a myriad of additional security features that users can opt in to further protect their accounts. Of course, you should also beware of scam artists and phishing attacks.

Trading Fees on Huobi

When it comes to the trading fees, Huobi has various fees on its platforms, so let’s have a look at a detailed breakdown for individual traders:

  • Futures Trading Fees

Huobi_10

  • Huobi Perpetual Swaps Trading Fees

Huobi_11

  • Huobi Options Trading Fees

Huobi_12

It’s also worth mentioning that Huobi Futures also provides VIP Sharing Program and Market Maker Program to lower big user’s switching costs to Huobi. For example, Huobi options maker fee rebate is as high as 0.003 USDT per contract.

Conclusion

In general, Huobi is one of the most reputable exchanges out there and they live up to the statements. The customer support is quick and easy to communicate with, the exchange offers a range of different tools to accommodate the needs of various traders.

Their Bitcoin Options trading platform is convenient, rather intuitive, and easy to work with. There’s a range of different contracts with various leverage options and expiration dates.

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Source: https://cryptopotato.com/huobi-guide-review-how-to-trade-options-futures/

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Was This The 3rd Largest Hack In Crypto History? Data Shows $280 Million Drained From KuCoin

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Newly aggregated data suggests that the hackers that recently compromised KuCoin’s hot wallets may have taken more than the estimated $150 million, as per the exchange’s report. Considering the updated numbers, the KuCoin hack would be the third-largest in history, with approximately $280 million stolen.

The KuCoin Hack: $280M Taken Instead Of $150M?

As CryptoPotato reported over the weekend, an unknown group of hackers exploited the hot wallets of the popular cryptocurrency exchange KuCoin. The platform quickly issued an official statement informing that the total amount stolen equaled $150 million worth of various digital assets.

Furthermore, KuCoin guaranteed that the exchange’s insurance fund will fully reimburse users.

However, the stolen amount could be significantly higher, according to the popular cryptocurrency researcher Larry Cermak. By examining wallets “very likely” associated with KuCoin, he estimated that the amount is actually $280 million, instead of $150 million.

Funds Stolen From KuCoin. Source: Twitter
Funds Stolen From KuCoin. Source: Twitter
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He admitted that some of the tokens have been “frozen, forked, and blacklisted,” but the numbers he came up “don’t reflect that.” Consequently, Cermak questioned KuCoin’s ability to indeed cover the stolen funds from its insurance fund.

Cermak also offered a list of the coins “likely” to be recovered – Velo ($76 million), Tether ($22 million), Orion ($10 million), KardiaChain ($10 million), Ocean Protocol ($9 million), VIDT Datalink ($7 million), NOIA Network ($5 million), and Covesting ($600,000). This equals about 50% of all stolen funds.

Was This The Third-Largest Crypto Hack Ever?

If Cermak’s data is accurate, the KuCoin hack would be the third-largest to date in the cryptocurrency field.

The most significant one came in early January 2018. The victim was the Japanese digital asset exchange Coincheck.

After announcing that the platform has seized all NEM deposits, Coincheck later froze all NEM sales, purchases, and withdrawals. Later on, the exchange confirmed that perpetrators had swiped about $535 million worth of NEM. Interestingly, all stolen funds were grabbed again from the exchange’s hot wallets.

The second-largest hack occurred on maybe the most famous Bitcoin Japanese exchange – MT.GOX. In early 2014, the platform suspended all transactions, closed the site, and declared bankruptcy. A few months down the road, it became clear that MT.GOX was drained for about 850,000 Bitcoins – worth about $460 million at the time, and a lot more as of today’s BTC values.

According to a Tokyo-based security company that presented evidence in 2015, “most or all of the missing bitcoins were stolen straight out of the MT.GOX hot wallet over time.”

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Source: https://cryptopotato.com/was-this-the-3rd-largest-hack-in-crypto-history-data-shows-280-million-drained-from-kucoin/

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BTC Price Analysis: Is Bitcoin Ready To Break $11,000 As Crypto Market Cap Reclaims $350B?

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Bitcoin price has finally broken bullish out of a 3-day channel (orange) and making good progress towards the psychological $11,000 level above.

The return of $9 billion to the global crypto market today has allowed BTC to return above $10,900 for the first time in 7 days and caused over $9 million worth of short liquidations on BitMEX – according to Datamish figures.

Avast majority of altcoins are also enjoying positive returns as Bitcoin lifts the rest of the market.

Despite the breakout, bearish traders are still putting up a strong fight right now. The $10,900 price point is seeing a lot of selling pressure bear down on the uptrend and is hindering Bitcoin’s current throwback rally attempt.

Price Levels to Watch in the Short-term

On the weekly BTC/USD, we can see that bulls are battling to break above the previous weekly open at $10,920. This is the first major resistance standing in the way of bitcoin’s progress towards $11K. Above this price point, we also have the $10,970 level which should create some friction in the uptrend.

Looking at the price action more closely on the 4-hour timeframe, we can see that bulls are trying to launch off from the 0.382 Fibonacci level at $10,832, which recently flipped from resistance to support. This is our first major support as BTC tries to reclaim $11K. If bears succeed in overcoming this key level, then we should expect to see prices fall back on the former channel resistance at around $10,810, and potentially dip back inside on to the 200 EMA (red) at $10,780.

Beneath that, we have the channel median line (dashed line) at $10,730 and the 50 EMA (blue) at $10,695 as additional supports.

Should bulls manage to break the $11,000 mark and maintain momentum, then the next test will be to conquer the 0.5 Fibonacci level at $11,150. With BTC already at 63 on the 4-hour RSI indicator, it’s possible that reaching this area will push the leading crypto into the overbought region and cause a sharp correction – be aware.

Total market capital: $353 billion

Bitcoin market capital: $201 billion

Bitcoin dominance: 57.0%

*Data by Coingecko

Bitstamp BTC/USD Weekly Chart

Bitcoin trading
BTC/USD chart via Tradingview

Bitstamp BTC/USD 4-Hour Chart

bitcoin trading
BTC/USD chart via Tradingview
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Binance Futures 50 USDT FREE Voucher: Use this link to register & get 10% off fees and 50 USDT when trading 500 USDT (limited – first 200 sign-ups & exclusive to CryptoPotato).

Click here to start trading on BitMEX and receive 10% discount on fees for 6 months.

Disclaimer: Information found on CryptoPotato is those of writers quoted. It does not represent the opinions of CryptoPotato on whether to buy, sell, or hold any investments. You are advised to conduct your own research before making any investment decisions. Use provided information at your own risk. See Disclaimer for more information.

Cryptocurrency charts by TradingView.


Source: https://cryptopotato.com/btc-price-analysis-is-bitcoin-ready-to-break-11000-as-crypto-market-cap-reclaims-350b/

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