Crypto ATM Operator Postpones USDT Support Over Fraud Allegations

CoinFlip, a cryptocurrency ATM operator, has recently revealed it postponed support for Tether’s USDT stablecoin over the New York Attorney General’s fraud allegations regarding Bitfinex and Tether.

According to the firm’s announcement, CoinFlip was set to support Tron’s version of the stablecoin, adding to 180 of its automated teller machines throughout the US, meaning users would be able to buy the token at convenience stores, gas stations, and tobacco shops in the country.

Speaking to CoinDesk Daniel Polotsky, the founder and CEO of the crypto ATM startup, revealed the plan to support Tron’s USDT was postponed over the NYAG’s case involving Tether and crypto exchange Bitfinex, which share management, as the firm wants to “make sure” they’re operating “100% lawfully before offering their products” to its customers..

As CryptoGlobe covered, Bitfinex was last month accused by the NYAG of having an $850 million hole since late 2018, which it reportedly covered by borrowing millions from Tether. The hole came as Crypto Capital, a third-party payments processor, claims they were seized by authorities from various governments.

To cover the situation, Bitfinex is said to have gotten a $625 million transfer from Tether between November and March, which it returned. It then got a $900 million line of credit from the firm, secured by iFinex shares. Per the NYAG, both Bitfinex and Tether are engaged in fraud.

Notably in March Tether quietly diluted its USD reserve claims, and as a result of Bitfinex being unable to access hundreds of millions, the over 2.6 billion USDT tokens in circulations are now only 74% backed by cash and equivalents. This saw the Bitfinex and Tether premium surge.

Given the situation, Tron also postponed a $20 million rewards program designed to encourage the adoption of USDT. The program would work with exchanges like OKEx and Huobi to airdrop Tron-based USDT tokens to users.

Its goal would be to encourage users to move tokens from the Omni protocol where the stablecoin was originally issued to Tron.

India’s Finance Minister Says Countries Are 'Rushing' Into Cryptocurrency

  • India's Finance Minister and Reserve Bank Governor cautioned against countries rushing into digital currencies. 
  • IMF Director Kristalina Georgieva said the organization is taking a "balance approach" to regulation.

Reserve Bank of India Governor Shaktikanta Das and Minister of Finance Nirmala Sitharaman cautioned that countries are rushing into cryptoassets, in the wake of Facebook’s handling of libra. 

Das spoke on cryptoassets earlier in the week at the annual meeting for the International Monetary Fund and World Bank. Sitharaman told Indian reporters of the meeting, 

On our side, the Reserve Bank Governor spoke about it during our turn to intervene. I got the sense that many countries were cautioning on rushing into this.

Das continued, explaining how some officials took issue with libra being labeled a ‘stablecoin,’

Some of them [countries] of course even suggested that they shouldn't be using, all of us shouldn't be using the name stable currency because that's the expression they used. Many cautioned to the extent saying even the name should not be stable currency, it should relate to virtual currency or something of the kind.

Sitharaman said the general consensus was that countries need to show “extreme” caution in the handling of digital currencies. However, she also admitted there were discussions about the benefits of digital currencies, saying that "presentations were also highlighting the strenghts of such virtual currency."

IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva said the organization is taking a “very balanced approach” to crypto-assets while being “mindful” of the risks they pose for consumers. 

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