The News Roundup’s usual author, Aryelle, is hard at work on a top secret KingsCrowd project. So this week’s edition is brought to you by Sean O’Reilly. Thanks Sean!
The Business Buzz
It’s the year of cyber attacks. Another one recently hit 18,000 small and medium-sized businesses. Unfortunately, there’s not enough intel to tell us who was directly impacted, culpable, or how to minimize future attacks. The White House is looking to impose sanctions on both Russia — for the SolarWinds hack last year — and China — for the most recent Microsoft attack.
Microsoft was quick to create a patch in response to the breach. But that doesn’t resolve the back-doors previously installed by the hackers. Exchange customers may be biting their nails for another inevitable event. But in the interim, their security teams are hard at work installing the patch.
Once the hackers knew the patch was pending, they changed their strategy from reading emails to creating footholds to stay in their victims’ network.
Thankfully, the US Government wasn’t impacted by the latest cyberattack. However, according to intelligence in the cybersecurity community, they’re not seeing any signs of things slowing down. The U.S. Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency tweeted out a message, “CISA urges ALL organizations across ALL sectors to follow guidance to address the widespread domestic and international exploitation of Microsoft Exchange Server product vulnerabilities.”
We’re hoping for the best but preparing for the worst.
The crypto game is exploding, and another acquisition is in the bag. This week PayPal acquired Tel-Aviv-based Crypto start-up Curv for an estimated $200 million. PayPal announced late last year that users would be able to buy and sell cryptocurrency through its platform. This acquisition signals that PayPal wants to up its crypto game even further. In the age of security breaches, Curv allows users to store their crypto assets securely through multi-step approval chains, and multiple secret public and private keys that are rotating consistently. Sign us up.
The Private Market
Mark your calendars. Monday, March 15th, will go down in history as the day Regulation Crowdfunding (Reg CF) enters the limelight as the alternative to traditional venture capital. As we first reported late last year, the SEC is increasing the annual limits for individual Reg CF funding rounds. The increase is a sign of how the market has proven to be a win-win for entrepreneurs and investors alike. Startups raising under Reg CF will be able to receive as much as $5 million a year from everyday investors. And as icing on the cake, the allowed max for Regulation A+ rounds will also be increased to a whopping $75 million.
This is just what was needed to push the Reg CF market towards $1 billion in annual investments! And it’s much sooner than one would have thought just 12 months ago. As further proof that the online private markets are the future, five new Reg CF funding platforms have been created in anticipation of the SEC’s increase.
Don’t change that dial. The Reg CF party is just getting started.
The Fun Stuff
Remember going places and seeing things? Yeah, I barely do too. But at least there’s the internet to remind us of what we’re missing. If cancelling the yearly camping and hiking trip bummed you out as much as it did me, you’ll appreciate the National Park Service’s beautiful Instagram account. And the captions are often educational — bonus!