North Korea / bitcoinnewsboards

North Korea may have made 200m over Bitcoins!

Priscilla Moriuchi, an ex-US National Security Agency officer, made the claim on a radio program called Radio Free Asia where she said North Korea was using ransomware to harvest cryptocurrency.

Here’s what she said: “I would bet that these coins are being turned into something – currency or physical goods – that are supporting North Korea’s nuclear and ballistic missile programme.”

Moriuchi believes North Korea’s hacking techniques could have reaped as many as 11,000 bitcoins.

She believes that during the cryptocurrency’s stratospheric December price rise, where the cost of a single Bitcoin shot up to $US 20,000, that haul could have been worth as much as $US 220m.

Moriuchi said North Korea operates from multiple bases across the world and not just from its home. “North Korea cyber operators sent to these foreign operations bases have two jobs. One, to conduct the operations that the North Korean regime tells them to conduct. And two, to earn money. The majority of that money, about 80 to 90 percent, is sent back to the regime, and only a small amount is for the operators themselves to keep,” she added.

As per certain security analysts, hacker cells have operational hubs in international locations. There are even inquiries on whether North Korea hackers are operational in other countries aside from China and India.

There also have been noted speculations that the North is possibility forming a state-sponsored army beyond the range of traditional banking systems to concentrate in the stealing of cryptocurrencies. South Korean cryptocurrency exchange was a target for North Korean criminals in December, swindling about $7 million worth of cryptocurrency and driving Youbit into bankruptcy.

Read this for more details: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2018/03/05/north-korea-may-have-made-much-200-million-bitcoin-according/

Previously, North Korea has already been accused of a number of cyber-related crimes, which has involved payment being made through bitcoin for the release of files. One example is the 2017 WannaCry ransomware attack, which affected more than 230,000 computers in over 150 countries. In December, the U.S. accused North Korea of the cyber attack, which saw malicious malware bringing businesses, schools, and hospitals to its knees.

The hacking at Coincheck has been the biggest recorded cryptocurrency theft so far. Tokyo-based Mt Gox filed for insolvency in 2014 after having lost $480m in a hack.

Eco/bitcoinnewsboards

Uber Co-Founder to launch a cryptocurrency(Eco)

Garrett Camp, best known for being the co-founder of Uber and founder of the venture fund Expa, is all set to launch his own cryptocurrency(Eco).

The cryptocurrency is called Eco, referring to the multiple facets of a monetary system like economics, ecosystem, and e-commerce.

The project is currently in the design stage with limited programming complete, and Uber Co-Founder Camp is looking for more field experts, scientists, and researchers to get involved in his initiative. He expects to initiate the test-net later this year.

The virtual currency system will be developed and operated by a new non-profit organization, the Eco Foundation. Camp, along with his partners at his startup accelerator Expa, plans to fund the Eco project with $10 million during the initial phase. So, Camp is planning to issue 1 trillion tokens in the initial stage. And from that sum, 50% will go to first billion people with verified accounts and 20% will be given to the universities running trusted nodes. Remaining 30% will be equally divided into advisors, strategic partners, and network’s creators and maintainers.

He believes that cryptocurrencies must serve their true purpose and that is “an instant, affordable, and borderless means of payment for the masses”, what other cryptos have failed to deliver.

Camp has said that ECO will become a truly digital currency that will be used as means of payment around the world and it will be utilized for routine transactions. According to Camp, “The more research I did, the more I was not really wanting to buy a large amount of any one of them. I realized it might be better to release a new project from a different philosophical standpoint with cooperation from a lot of universities, scientists, and research institutes—like the Internet.”

Eco also aims to be far more user-friendly than other cryptocurrencies. Another big roadblock to adoption of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies is that the process isn’t very easy. Eco plans to have simple apps, making the currency a viable option for people who aren’t tech-savvy.

Scalability is another major cryptocurrency roadblock, particularly for bitcoin. The bitcoin network can process just a handful of transactions per second, which can lead to major network delays. Eco plans to have an initial capacity of more than 1,000 transactions per second and to increase this to more than 100,000 per second within a few years.

Camp is one of a number of entrepreneurs who have thrown their hats into the cryptocurrency ring in recent months. Pavel Durav, the CEO, and founder of chat app Telegram, has been building buzz around a billion dollar initial coin offering. Other businesses like Overstock, Kodak, and chat app Kik have either held or intend to hold ICOs. Even Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s CEO, said that he planned to focus this year on fixing Facebook, a goal that included exploring “encryption and cryptocurrency.”

Read all the latest crypto-news right here: http://fortune.com/2018/03/03/bitcoin-crypto-jpmorgan-chase-goldman-sachs-crypto-uber/

 

Crypto/bitcoinnewsboards

The First Crypto Repo Trading platform, on its way!

A former Goldman Sachs employee Alex Grebnev wants to launch a Crypto Repo Trading platform allowing investors to operate with repurchase agreements based on cryptocurrencies and possibly moving the crypto market to the financial mainstream.

So, basically, what does this mean? And how will it work?

A repo is an agreement to sell securities and repurchase them on a specified future date (“maturity”) at a pre-agreed price. Repos facilitate the funding of long positions, the borrowing of assets to cover shorts, collateral re-usage, efficient portfolio management and safe (collateralized) cash investment. Oxygen is targeting a broad range of crypto asset holders with a variety of economic goals:

  • Token holders (including strategic investors and miners) seeking to post their assets as collateral to free up capital or earn income;
  • Speculators and market-makers aiming to benefit from price volatility and to capture arbitrage opportunities;
  • Early post-crowdsale entities with idle crypto assets, that could be lent against collateral, providing income generation;
  • Tokenomy-powered / Tokenomy-anchored businesses demanding liquidity and liquidity management tools to deploy liquidity surpluses, or to cover liquidity gaps;
  • Crypto investment funds seeking interest income through the lending of their portfolio assets (while retaining exposure);
  • Crypto exchanges looking to provide more trading options to their clients.

In а CryptoRepo transaction, one party borrows crypto assets from another party and commits to returning these assets with interest at a future date. The Borrower provides crypto assets to the Lender as collateral, creating a secured digital transaction using an Ethereum-based Smart Contract.

Cryptocurrency holders would generate profits from lending their coins through Oxygen to a second party. In return, they would receive another coin as collateral until their initial token is returned. The second party would use the borrowed coin for short-term trading or transactions and will have to pay a fee as part of the deal.

Alex Grebnev predicts the platform will stabilize the cost of borrowing cryptocurrencies, whose price fluctuations can deter investors who want to bet on falling prices, known as taking a short position. He expects repo agreements to be struck for periods ranging from hours to a year or two.

Here’s what he has to say about cryptocurrencies and its future: “The cryptocurrency market is developing very fast, but it should also be developing on a professional level, with the application of real-world concepts. There are already a number of users utilizing the market and in order for it to develop, real-world applications must be brought into the world. This is why we are applying the repo market to the crypto market – users can  profit without losing their assets.”

If the operation is successful, the crypto-space will move even further into the mainstream: This past December, Chicago-based exchanges CME Group and Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) launched Bitcoin futures contracts.

Let us wait for the First Crypto Repo Trading platform.

Read more of it, here: http://markets.businessinsider.com/news/stocks/ex-goldman-sachs-banker-creates-first-crypto-repo-platform-in-collaboration-with-exchange-changelly-6006533

Bill Gates/bitcoinnewsboards

Bill Gates is not a “fan” of cryptocurrencies.

“The main feature of cryptocurrencies is their anonymity,” Bill Gates said. “I don’t think this is a good thing. The Government’s ability to find money laundering and tax evasion and terrorist funding is a good thing. Right now cryptocurrencies are used for buying fentanyl and other drugs so it is a rare technology that has caused deaths in a fairly direct way. I think the speculative wave around ICOs and cryptocurrencies is super risky for those who go long.”

This is what he said in a session on Reddit, supposedly an “Ask Me Anything” session.

Even though the philanthropy under Bill Gates’ name has partnered with cryptocurrency firm Ripple in a bid to help the unbanked, the former Microsoft CEO said on Tuesday(27th Feb.) that the main feature of Bitcoin and its ilk is not a “good thing.”

When questioned regarding his views on cryptocurrencies in his sixth Reddit “Ask Me Anything” session, the billionaire focused instead on the downsides of Bitcoin and its peers. Namely, that the cryptocurrencies don’t reveal the name of their holders in the way a credit card statement might—making it easier for illegal transactions to fly under the radar.

When another Reddit user pointed out that plain cash can also be used for illicit activities, Gates said that crypto stands out because it can be easier to use. “Yes — anonymous cash is used for these kinds of things, but you have to be physically present to transfer it, which makes things like kidnapping payments more difficult,” he wrote.

Bill Gates also warned that the wave of speculation surrounding cryptocurrencies is “super risky for those who go long.”

He is not the only one here, speaking against the speculative assets. His close friend Warren Buffett also predicts a disappointing outcome. “In terms of cryptocurrencies, generally, I can say with almost certainty that they will come to a bad ending,” the chairman and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway said.

Bitcoin has also been used by hackers to install ransomware on victims’ computers to profit from their malicious activity.

The cryptocurrency is not entirely anonymous in its current state, but there are proposals for adding a better privacy system in the future.

Hence, in conclusion,

Billionaire philanthropist and Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates said no technology has “caused deaths in a fairly direct way” to the extent that cryptocurrencies have. He said that the ease with which people can anonymously buy drugs is a major problem, and suggested that cryptocurrencies are used to launder money and fund terrorist organizations. Gates also added that “the speculative wave” around initial coin offerings and cryptocurrencies is “super risky.”

Read more here: https://www.inverse.com/article/41719-bill-gates-is-not-a-fan-of-cryptocurrency

 

SEC/bitcoinnewsboards

SEC Launches Probe onto the Crypto-street.

The Securities and Exchange Commission, that is the SEC,  has issued dozens of subpoenas and information requests to technology companies and advisers involved in the red-hot market for cryptocurrencies.

Certain sources told Wall Street Journal that the regulatory agency has a currently unknown number of subpoenas and information requests to advisers and technology companies active in the United States’ cryptocurrency market.

Among the subpoenas from the top US securities regulatory agency, there are demands regarding the structure for sales and pre-sales for ICOs, which do not fall under the same rigorous scrutiny of public offerings. The increased pressure follows previous inquiries from the SEC, which have suggested that many token sales and ICOs may be violating securities laws.

Since the last few months, the SEC has asked for information from companies that have sold new virtual currencies to raise money for their projects, as well as advisory firms and lawyers who have helped with these sales, according to four people who have seen some of the subpoenas. The people asked not to be identified because the subpoenas are part of confidential legal negotiations. The demands for information began last year, and companies have continued receiving them in recent months, the four people said.

Previously, SEC Chairman Jay Clayton issued a statement Jan. 25, along with U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission Chairman J. Christopher Giancarlo, that said, in part: “In recent months, we have seen a wide range of market participants, including retail investors, seeking to invest in [distributed ledger technology, or DLT] initiatives, including through cryptocurrencies and so-called ICOs — initial coin offerings. Experience tells us that while some market participants may make fortunes, the risks to all investors are high. Caution is merited.”

With this news, the price of bitcoin steadied on Thursday, as the market kept a close eye on developments about a reported probe by the Securities and Exchange Commission into the initial-coin offering (ICO) industry.

However, earlier, the price fell sharply late Wednesday on the news that the SEC had issued scores of subpoenas and information requests to companies involved in the ICO market.

We know what an ICO is, it is a fundraising method in which a company issues its own cryptocurrency, often in exchange for bitcoin. The SEC has had its eye on the industry for a while. In December, a new cyber unit halted an allegedly fraudulent ICO. And now this news.

Read the journal here: https://www.wsj.com/articles/sec-launches-cryptocurrency-probe-1519856266

Steven Seagal/bitcoinnewsboards

Steven Seagal gives a thumbs-up to cryptocurrencies.

Yes, you heard it right. Steven Seagal himself, endorsing cryptocurrency Bitcoiin2Gen.

It is one of those times when you think things couldn’t get more interesting in the crypto world, but then it does. Steven Seagal is now a part of the up-and-down world of Bitcoiin and its cryptocurrency. The 1990s action movie star is officially endorsing the Bitcoiin2Gen cryptocurrency.

The actor hasn’t had a hit in 20 years and is currently known for churning out straight-to-DVD action films.

Seagal noted his new role as ambassador for the Bitcoiin2Gen cryptocurrency with a Tweet. Apparently, the worldview and ideology of Seagal mesh perfectly with those developing the new virtual currency.

For Bitcoiin2Gen, the choice of Zen Master, Steven Seagal is obvious as brand ambassador, this extends our long-term commitment towards the community.

Bitcoiin2Gen aims to make a superior or more advanced version of Original Bitcoin. Bitcoiin2Gen is a self-sustaining cryptocurrency that provides at launch its own ecosystem, its own wallet, its own mining machines and the ability to exchange the coin to popular altcoins or FIAT currencies.

Know more about this virtual currency here: https://bitcoiin.com/code/theme/default/pdf/Bitcoiin-Whitepaper-compressed2.pdf

The official announcement was as follows:

“As a Buddhist, Zen teacher, and healer, Steven lives by the principles that the development of the physical self is essential to protect the spiritual man. He believes that what he does in his life is about leading people into contemplation to wake them up and enlighten them in some manner. These are precisely the objectives of the Bitcoiin2Gen to empower the community by providing a decentralized P2P payment system with its own wallet, mining ecosystem and robust blockchain platform without the need of any third party.”

The Securities and Exchange Commission previously issued a statement warning people about the dangers of celebrity-backed ICOs.

It says, “Celebrities and others are using social media networks to encourage the public to purchase stocks and other investments,” the SEC warns in a statement in November 2017. “These endorsements may be unlawful if they do not disclose the nature, source, and amount of any compensation paid, directly or indirectly, by the company in exchange for the endorsement.”

There are 34 days left in Bitcoiin 2Gen’s ICO.

It’s also important to highlight warn potential investors that ‘Bitcoiin 2Gen’ isn’t actually part of Bitcoin. The spelling with an extra ‘i’ is intentionally dubious as it attempts to ride off the back of the successful Bitcoin name when it in actual fact is a token based the Ethereum blockchain.

The SEC urges caution when investing into cryptocurrencies that feature celebrity spokespersons, like what Bitcoiin is doing. It further advises that consumers should do a large amount of research on the subject before investing and that relying on the word of celebrities may not the best investing advice.

Bitcoin/bitcoinnewsboards

Bangladesh police hunts for Bitcoin users in the country!

What an average cryptocurrency investor worries, in the countries of Europe and North America, is about exchange rates, whether to sell off or hold and the prevailing ups and downs in the prices of these virtual currencies. Such is not the case in Bangladesh where the police are hunting Bitcoin users. At least, in the rest of the countries, we do not have to worry about the police coming down and knocking on our door, why? Because we have engaged in cryptocurrencies.

The officials of the central bank have warned all other commercial banks in the country to be wary of bitcoin users.

The Foreign Exchange Police Department and some other departments are being considered to be monitors of the currency, and a report will soon be sent to the Ministry of Home Affairs regarding cryptocurrencies, said a high-ranking official of Bangladesh Bank.

Investigators from Bangladesh Financial Intelligence Unit (BFIU) have already begun to look for bitcoin traders, and even the BTRC are involved. Officials from the aforementioned three organizations have already held four meetings on the matter.

Since Bitcoin is traded through an open source cryptographic protocol, negating the need for any financial organization or ban, there is no governing body for the currency anywhere in the world.

Previously, the government has warned people not to make any transactions with bitcoin. According to Bangladesh Bank, bitcoin is neither accepted nor considered legal tender anywhere in the world, and it is risky to use this currency. The trading of this currency might cause infringements of laws regarding money laundering or funding terrorism.

Amongst the statements we have:

An official of BFIU said: “Banks and other financial organizations of the country have been ordered to maintain a strict vigil on cryptocurrency trading. A circular will soon be sent out detailing the matter. There is no way to purchase these currencies legally through banking channels. Cybercrime investigators are working on the matter.”

At a recent seminar called “Digital World 2017” conference, advisor to the Bangladesh Bank S K Sur Chowdhury said, “A combined committee will be formed with officials from the central bank as well as government and non-government financial organizations. It will figure out how to create and implement Bangladesh’s digital currency.”

Catch the circular and related news here: http://www.dhakatribune.com/business/banks/2017/12/27/bangladesh-bank-ban-bitcoin/

Even though it hasn’t been accepted as a currency yet, the popularity of bitcoin continues to rise meteorically. As a result, the central banks of many countries are beginning to implement policies to control it.

But the bottom line is simple: Law enforcement must prioritize better. Before we start worrying about digital currency and its merely suggested potential for crime, let us fix the actual crimes which continue to plague our nation.

Atari/bitcoinnewsboards

Game maker Atari join hands with crypto-world!

Atari remains one of the legendary game maker with Pac-man and Pong being some of the games in their makings. So what’s its next plan? Cryptocurrency. Entering the crypto-street. Launching its own cryptocurrency. Yes, you heard that correctly, Atari is launching its own cryptocurrency called the “Atari Token.”

It is taking a stake in a company that’s building a blockchain-based digital entertainment platform and, as part of that agreement, it will create its own digital currency called Atari Token. The company is also expanding its online casino-gaming partnership with Pariplay Ltd. to allow gambling with digital currencies.

Here’s its CEO Fred Chesnais speaking about this idea: “Blockchain technology is poised to take a very important place in our environment and to transform, if not revolutionize, the current economic ecosystem, especially in the areas of the video game industry and online transactions. Given our technological strengths with the development studios and the global reputation of the  brand, we have the opportunity to position ourselves attractively in this sector. Our objective is to take strategic positions with a limited cash risk, in order to optimize the assets and the brand.”

He also says, “The second project in progress is the strengthening of the partnership with Pariplay, Ltd in the launch in 2018 of casino platforms allowing players to bet either in real money or with most crypto-currencies currently outstanding. These casino sites will offer many Atari games. To broaden the appeal of these new casinos, and once the Token available, Atari has the project to launch Pong Token, a second Token dedicated to crypto-casinos and usable on these gaming sites. The details of this launch of crypto-casinos will be announced soon.”

We also note that it isn’t the only company benefiting from the crypto boom. Two days after announcing it would partner with a blockchain company, Eastman Kodak Co.’s stock jumped 245-percent too.

Few things to note are:

  • Despite the lack of details, shares in Atari SA are up around 60 percent since the announcement.
  • The same happened in the market for similarly vague crypto-related announcements from Kodak, the Long Island Iced Tea Company, and a Hooters franchise.
  • This excitement seems undamped by the recent plunge in the prices of cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin.
  • If the name “Atari Token” sounds familiar, it might be because previously the firm used that name for its own cross-platform reward points system. This system could be used to fuel in-game microtransactions.
  • The company will actually launch two separate currencies: The Token, to be used on digital gaming platforms, and the Pong Token, for online casinos.

Read more about this news here: https://www.engadget.com/2018/02/16/atari-token-cryptocurrency/

Bitcoin/bitcoinnewsboards

Bitcoin price rises, thanks to a mystery trader!

In the recent past, the cryptocurrency industry nosedived, right at the beginning of 2018, which ironically was, weeks after Bitcoin reached an all-time high of around $19,500, as new regulations and security concerns triggered severe devaluation.

On Feb. 6, 2018, bitcoin was at $6,000. However, true to one speculator’s hunch, has now climbed back up over $10,000 – a gain of more than 60 percent.

This unknown trader made his purchase between Feb. 9 and 12, increasing his balance from 55,000 coins to over 96,000.

Going by a tweet, a bitcoin address bought almost $1 billion worth of bitcoin during a dip in its prices recently. The buyer first bought bitcoin worth $344 million between February 9th and February 12th, when its price traversed the range between $8,500 and $8,900. The buyer doubled down on bitcoin by purchasing 41,000 coins, just before its price hit $10,000.

The tweet will provide further ammunition to critics of the cryptocurrency. In the past, detractors have noted that despite bitcoin’s claims of being decentralized, its price is susceptible to being manipulated by “bitcoin whales,” or investors and traders who hold large stashes of the virtual currency.

Jeff Koyen, president of 360 Blockchain USA in his statements said,“In the meantime, the $400 million whale is fuel for the Telegram channels where traders lay out their conspiracy theories. However, I am willing to believe that, seeing bitcoin bottom around $6,000, Wall Street smelled blood and jumped back in.”

The price of bitcoin has increased more than 60% since trading under $6,000 on February 6, pushing back above $10,000, helped by signs of growing recognition of digital currencies from officials in Washington.

Alex Sunnarborg, Founding Partner of Tetras Capital said, “Not sure who that big buyer was but many have bought this dip and have added since the rebound and additional regulatory clarity in the U.S. and Asia.”

News of the purchase quickly spread on social media and chat forums, convincing other risk-takers that the cryptocurrency had hit its low and could only increase from there. Hence, leading to an increase in BTC prices.

Check this out for more about it: https://www.investopedia.com/news/anonymous-cryptocurrency-enthusiast-bought-400-million-bitcoin/

So, to conclude, the purchase comes as cryptocurrencies are making a comeback after a dreadful start to 2018. Major digital currencies lost as much as 50% to start the year as growing regulation and security fears crippled the market, seeing traders bail on their positions. However, the tide has turned.