Coinbase Launches Its Crypto Debit Card in Europe

Coinbase has officially launched its cryptocurrency debit card in Italy and five other European countries. Back in April the ‘Coinbase Card’ has already been launched in the UK.

Coinbase rolled out its credit card in order to allow its customers to make purchases directly with bitcoin and other major cryptocurrencies.

The ‘Coinbase Card’ works as any other similar card where crypto is being directly converted into cash when you make a purchase, which means that merchants do not actually have to deal with the volatile asset.

European users can either download the Coinbase Card app or order a physical card.

You can buy groceries on bitcoin and then coffee on litecoin right after,” Coinbase U.K. CEO Zeeshan Feroz commented. (Positive)

University of British Columbia will Add Blockchain Program in 2019

In January 2019, one of Canada’s leading research universities, the University of British Columbia, is launching a blockchain tech training path for graduate students.

According to the UBC, the program is a first in Canada. The track will focus on four areas: health and wellness, clean energy, regulatory technology and issues for Indigenous residents.

“The initiative will allow students to develop the skills around emerging technologies that are in high demand as well as drive economic growth as graduates fill the void in the industry,” said Victoria Lemieux, UBC iSchool associate professor and founder of [email protected]

UBC aims to train 139 students over six years, and build out services for existing master’s and PhD students in educationally adjacent areas. Interested students do not need to come to the program with blockchain experience.

The initiative is supported by 15 industry partners from a wide range of sectors, including Boehringer Ingelheim, a pharmaceutical company with net sales of around 17.5 billion euros in 2018.

Mitacs, a not-for-profit that works with federal and municipal governments to support industrial innovation, will also provide $1.324 million over six years. Additionally, the agency will fund 18 master’s and eight PhD internships in the field, representing a potential value of over $2.44 million for 156 internships and post-doctoral training projects over the course of the partnership. (Neutral)

BitMEX Reports Increase in Attacks on Accounts and Stresses Security Measures

On June 11, Hong Kong-based peer-to-peer (P2P) cryptocurrency exchange BitMEX has reported an influx of attacks on user account credentials, according to an official blog post

In addition to covering a litany of best practices for user security, the cryptocurrency exchange stressed the importance of using two-factor authentication (2FA) in particular.

According to BitMEX, research at Google has shown that virtually all attempts to steal account credentials can be prevented by enabling 2FA. BitMEX concurred that 2FA is the best way to prevent such attacks, and is considering making 2FA authentication mandatory on its platform.

BitMEX also noted that compromised accounts on the exchange are typically associated with weak or reused passwords, hacked emails, or computers infected with malware. Additionally, the exchange discovered some new tactics being deployed in these account hacks, and have updated its policies accordingly.

First, there is no longer an option to disable email notifications about account logins, since hackers were disabling these notifications in order to further hide their tracks. Second, withdrawal requests must now be verified by email, since attackers were making API keys with the hacked accounts, which could be used on their own to authenticate withdrawals. (Neutral)