Mooners & Shakers: Crypto ‘potential threat to US national security’

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Mooners & Shakers: Crypto ‘potential threat to US national security’

A high-level bureaucrat has told a US Senate committee cryptocurrency is “potentially a threat to national security” and demanded more regulation.

Meanwhile, it’s not a disaster, but not great news across crypto, with the majors taking manageable dips over the past 24 hours.

At the time of writing BTC is down 1.3 per cent, ETH is down 1.6 per cent and even Doge is falling, shedding 5.3 per cent after a solid run this week off the back of Twitter rumours that bear a distinct hint of Musk.

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EthereumPoW (ETHW) was the hardest charger over the past 24 hours, up a tidy 19.7 per cent at the time of writing.

None of that is surprising, considering that a look out the window will show you it’s still raining burning chunks of FTX – which is exactly why there are some serious-looking US regulation hawks, standing on the street corners trying to sell us all umbrellas.

They don’t accept Bitcoin, though. Cash only.

A clear and present danger

Just in case you weren’t 100 per cent sure that the people making the Difficult Decisions in the US of A are trying to stick their greedy little fingers into the steaming crypto pie that’s cooling on the windowsill, Commodities Futures Trading Commission chair Rostin Behnam has called on America to do just that.

Behnam, who is 100 per cent top of “Guys Who Definitely Look Like Supervillains” list, appeared before the Senate Agriculture Committee to talk about how crypto is “potentially a threat to national security”.

I know, I know … there’s a bit to unpack from that particular paragraph.

Behnam demanded stronger regulations in the wake of the FTX collapse.

“I strongly believe that we need to move quickly on a thoughtful regulatory approach to establish guardrails in these fast-growing markets of evolving risk, or they will remain an unsafe venture for customers and could present a growing risk to the broader financial system,” he said.

He said the CFTC lacked the authority to write rules and to oversee the crypto marketplace.

“Instead, we may only reach it through more limited authority activated when fraud or manipulation has already occurred,” he said.

“While we can and do hold perpetrators accountable when we find fraud or manipulation, for the victims of the scheme, it is already too late.

“But as I suggested over a year ago, the fraud that we are able to prosecute is likely a fraction of what exists in the shadows.

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“Limited enforcement authority is no substitute for comprehensive regulation in which trading platforms, dealers, custodians, and other critical infrastructure participants are required to be registered and subject to direct oversight by a regulator such as the CFTC.

“The CFTC has many tools at its disposal to try to make defrauded customers whole, but the process is long and arduous, and sometimes there is no way to return all of what was lost. “Comprehensive regulation protects customers on the front end by stopping fraud before it occurs.”

If you have 2.5 hours to spare (and it’s Friday, so who doesn’t, really?) you can watch Mr Benham get grilled by a bunch of people who are clearly struggling to understand what’s happening right here.

… but, that’s probably worth saving until later tonight, if you’re struggling to get off to sleep.

‘Cough up or sod off’: Apple

Look, we knew this was coming, and now that it’s here, it still sucks, but Apple’s decision to apply its 30 per cent fee (or ‘tax’ or ‘incredibly rude cash grab’ or whatever you want to call it) on gas fees paid on NFT transactions conducted on its platform has forced Coinbase to cripple that part of its Wallet iOS app.

“For anyone who understands how NFTs and blockchains work, this is clearly not possible. Apple’s proprietary In-App Purchase system does not support crypto so we couldn’t comply even if we tried,” Coinbase went on to say.

It’s not the first time Apple has been in spotlight over its “If you want to use it, here’s what it’s going to cost you” 30 per cent money-sucker protocol – and it certainly won’t be the last – but Coinbase says it’s willing to help Apple figure something out that is at least feasible.

But in the meantime, NFT trading is set to join Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Ethereum Classic (ETC), Ripple’s XRP Ledger (XRP) and Stellar (XLM) on the Coinbase Wallet scrap heap.

Top 10 overview

With the overall crypto market cap at $US891 billion, down 1 per cent since this time yesterday, here’s the current state of play among top 10 tokens – according to CoinGecko.

Uppers and downers: 11–100

Sweeping a market-cap range of about $US6.3 billion to about $US18 million in the rest of the top 100, let’s find some of the biggest 24-hour gainers and losers at press time.


  • EtheriumPoW (ETHW), (market cap: $US428 million) +19.7 per cent
  • Trust Wallet (TWT), (mc: $US110 million) +9.6 per cent
  • Tokenize Exchange (TKX), (mc: $US11 million) +6.3 per cent
  • Dash (DASH), (mc: $US79 million) +5.1 per cent
  • Radix (XRD), (mc: $US403,000) +4.2 per cent


  • BinaryX (BNX), (market cap: $US21 million) -7.9 per cent
  • BTSE Token (BTSE), (market cap: $US374,000) -5.4 per cent
  • Dogecoin (DOGE), (mc: $US1.35 billion) -5.3 per cent
  • Curve DAQ (CRV), (mc: $US46.8 million) -4.9 per cent
  • Theta Network (THETA), (mc: $US26.1 million) -4.3 per cent

(Stats accurate at time of publishing, based on data.)

Around the blocks

A selection of rumour, randomness and pertinence that stuck with us on our morning moves through the Crypto Twitterverse …

And if you ever wanted to lay the world’s easiest bet, here’s your chance on an absolute roughie for the FIFA World Cup, courtesy of someone who quite clearly has a bit too much money …

Honestly, with Japan sitting at around 51:1 odds to win the World Cup, you could save yourself about $6 for a whack at $300 right there …

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Originally published as Mooners & Shakers: Crypto sluggish as a homeless snail, while US calls for regulation. Again.

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