Dharma announced its new platform iteration in an official blog post on Aug. 29. According to the announcement, Dharma has partnered with the Ethereum-based money market Compound and will reportedly use its protocol as infrastructure for the new platform. Additionally, Dharma will now make its smart contracts open source prior to production, per the announcement.
San Francisco-based crypto lending and borrowing firm Dharma has announced the start of a closed beta for a new version of its platform.
Upcoming changes and short-term timeline
Dharma V2 is currently in closed beta, which means that it is only accessible to existing Dharma users. However, the company plans to open up the beta within weeks for further testing. Moreover, Dharma announced a number of new features they aim to push out including a non-custodial and multisig smart wallet, dedicated deposit addresses, and frictionless fiat on-ramps and off-ramps.
Previous issues and a new chapter
According to the announcement, Dharma decided to start from scratch on its platform due to technical issues and security concerns. The company reported that they were “plagued with reliability issues across the platform and had limited confidence in the security of the system”, although they note that the security of user funds were never compromised.
Dharma’s initial stated goal was to construct a “standardized, generic rails for peer-to-peer lending on Ethereum” with many user-requested features.
As previously reported by Cointelegraph, Dharma ultimately moved to halt new deposits and loans on its platform at the beginning of August, but promised that an exciting new chapter was coming soon. The company wrote:
“For now, we’re pausing new deposits and loans in Dharma. If you have an existing deposit or loan with Dharma, you’ll still be able to access your account and will have the option to withdraw any funds that are not currently locked up.”
Cryptocurrency Payments Processor BitPay Adds Support for Ether
Major cryptocurrency payment services provider BitPay has added support for the second-largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization, Ether (ETH).
Per a press release published on Sept. 16, companies that use BitPay for payment processing are now able to accept Ether for purchases without having to set up any enhancements. BitPay has also made it possible for users to store and use Ether in a BitPay wallet, and for BitPay Prepaid Visa Card holders to top up their debit cards.
Ether joins Bitcoin and Bitcoin Cash
Launched in 2011, BitPay processes payments with Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash (BCH) and now Ether. The system converts all currencies to digital money and vice versa. BitPay has purportedly processed nearly $3 billion in payments since 2011. Commenting on the development, Vitalik Buterin, a co-founder of Ethereum, said:
“It is exciting to see BitPay leading the way in integrating Ethereum into global payment systems. … This truly opens up a new world of possibilities for the Ethereum ecosystem, and together we can continue to be a leading innovator for real world use cases for cryptocurrencies.”
BitPay’s security measures and payment restrictions
BitPay has been stepping up its security measures in recent months. In late August, the company introduced new identity verification measures for certain high-value payments, refunds and payouts. The firm now requires that users undergo a one-time verification process that requires the input of data such as their Social Security or passport number, as well as a photo ID.
That same month, BitPay rejected a $100,000 donation to an Amazon rainforest charity as Amazon Watch’s maximum payment limit was set below $100,000. After BitPay advised staff to change it, however, they said that doing so was impossible automatically, and that they must submit separate documentation.
In September, Tom Grundy, founder of crowdfunded media outlet Hong Kong Free Press, claimed that BitPay blocked donations to Hong Kong for several weeks.