Binance and tech investor Sequoia Capital are reportedly still backing Tesla CEO Elon Musk’s $44 billion takeover bid of social media platform Twitter.
Sequoia Capital already committed $800 million to the deal back in April before Musk subsequently got cold feet. According to an unnamed source familiar with the matter, the firm will keep that capital allocation to support the deal now that the deal is reportedly back this month.
Binance has also indicated that it will carry on with its contribution of $500 million, with a representative telling Cointelegraph that “we’re still committed and nothing new to share at this moment” as they referred to Changpeng ”CZ” Zhao’s comments via Twitter from May:
“We hope to be able to play a role in bringing social media and Web3 together and broadening the use and adoption of crypto and blockchain technology.”
At the start of October, it was reported that Musk had pulled another abrupt U-turn by filing a notice with the Delaware Chancery Court on Oct. 3 indicating that he is ready to proceed with the “closing of the transaction contemplated by the April 25, 2022 Merger Agreement.”
If the deal goes through, the purchase will be for the initially agreed upon $54.20 per share for a total of $44 billion.
Sequoia Capital has a history of backing Musk’s endeavors, as it was an early-stage investor in what eventually became PayPal, the payments platform he co-founded that was sold for $1.5 billion in 2002. The firm also led a $675 million funding round for Musk’s Boring Company in April.
Binance has had a keen eye on big mainstream deals this year, previously placing a $200 million strategic investment into financial news outlet Forbes, intending to improve consumer understanding of crypto and blockchain.
Aside from the $500 million to support Musk’s Twitter takeover, Bloomberg reported last week that Binance has splurged $325 million on 67 projects this year. CZ has also stated the firm may spend more than $1 billion this year in commercial investments.
For the last two weeks, unknown hackers have been airdropping nonfungible tokens (NFTs) to Solana cryptocurrency users masquerading as a new Phantom wallet security update. However, instead of an update, it’s malware designed to steal their crypto.
According to BleepingComputer, the hackers are claiming to be from the Phantom team and using NFTS titled PHANTOMUPDATE.COM or UPDATEPHANTOM.COM.
After opening the NFT, users are told a new security update has been issued for the Phantom wallet and can be downloaded by using the enclosed link or the listed website.
To add urgency, the message claims that failing to download the fake security update, “may result in a loss of funds due to hackers exploiting the Solana network.”
The urgency piece is likely related to the Solana-based wallet hack, which saw roughly $8 million stolen from 8,000 wallets in August, including those of Phantom wallet users. The security exploit was later linked to vulnerabilities within the Solana-based Web3 wallet service Slope.
Should a victim follow the fake Phantom update instructions, the process ends with malware being downloaded from GitHub which attempts to steal browser information, history, cookies, passwords, SSH keys and other information from the user.
Users who may have inadvertently fallen prey to this scam are recommended to take security precautions such as scanning their computer with antivirus software, securing crypto assets and changing passwords on sensitive platforms such as bank accounts and crypto trading platforms.
In the past, similar malware-spreading campaigns have employed malware dubbed Mars Stealer to steal crypto from unsuspecting users.
An upgrade of the information-stealing Oski trojan of 2019, Mars Stealer targets more than 40 browser-based crypto wallets, along with popular two-factor authentication (2FA) extensions, with a grabber function that steals users’ private keys.
The Singapore-based arm of the United States cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase has received “in-principle approval” to provide crypto services in Singapore from its central bank, the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS).
Speaking to Cointelegraph, Hassan Ahmed, CEO of Coinbase Singapore and the exchanges’ regional director for Southeast Asia, said Singapore is a key institutional market for the exchange in Asia due to businesses there continuing to show interest in and gain exposure to crypto.
The city-state also serves as Coinbase’s Asia-Pacific tech hub, with an on-the-ground team of engineers responsible for its international expansion efforts and platform localization, said Ahmed.
Coinbase was already providing services including its institutional platform under an exemption granted by MAS, but Ahmed said it would look to partner with local platforms and expand its fiat capabilities with its new approval to provide Digital Payment Token services.
The exchange says it’s undertaking ongoing work with local Web3 community groups such as the Association of Crypto Currency Enterprises and Start-ups Singapore (ACCESS) and the Singapore Fintech Association (SFA).
Ahmed says it’s working with the local industry in Singapore to ensure fair laws from regulators and provide information to a youth-focused nonprofit, Advisory.sg.
“We collaborate with industry associations to promote dialogue with policymakers, and ensure balanced regulations, and a pragmatic approach to regulatory framework for digital assets,” said Ahmed, adding:
“On the employment side, crypto as an industry is exciting but often confusing, so we are working with career exploration non-profits like advisory.sg to provide guidance to their members.”
Coinbase has seen an interest in expanding through the Asia-Pacific region, with a local entity in Japan since August 2021 and an Oct. 5 expansion of its retail-focused services in Australia.
Ahmed said of Coinbase’s plans to offer services throughout Southeast Asia:
“We see Southeast Asia as a crypto-forward region with a lot of demand for holding and using crypto in markets such as the Philippines and Indonesia, as well as a hotbed of innovation for trends like Web3 gaming such as Vietnam.”
Coinbase’s vice president of international and business development Nana Murugesan previously said to Cointelegraph that the exchange would focus “more towards markets that have [regulatory] clarity” when planning to expand further into Asia.
This Daily Dose was brought to you by Cointelegraph.