The Chinese government took a notably harsher stance on Monday, after it was widely reported local bitcoin exchanges would be shut down by authorities. This saw the price hit a low of $4,108 Monday.

On Tuesday bitcoin recovered somewhat, and was trading at $4,342 at 1pm London time, up 3.66 percent.

“As bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies have increased in value in the last year, nation states are beginning to take notice,” Luke McNamara, senior cyber threat intelligence analyst at FireEye, wrote in the report.

Several governments have shown increasing interest in virtual currencies as they move out of the periphery and into the mainstream. The U.S. government for instance has signaled that securities law could apply to ICOs. Meanwhile, Estonia has said it wants to launch its own cryptocurrency, called “estcoin”, via a state-backed ICO.

Australia has also proposed legislation which would bring digital currency exchange providers under the remit of its government financial intelligence agency, in an effort to clamp down on money laundering and other illicit activities.

“Consequently, it should be no surprise that cryptocurrencies, as an emerging asset class, are becoming a target of interest by a regime that operates in many ways like a criminal enterprise,” McNamara added.

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