Chinese Company Lost $23 Million Allegedly Mining Cryptocurrency in Secret

A subsidiary of Chinese firm Huatie has been sold off at 10 percent of its initial value following losses from suspected secret cryptocurrency mining activities amounting to about $23 million.


90 Percent Value Plunged Probably Due to 2018 Bear Market

According to Chinese crypto media outlet 8BTC, Huatie HengAn, a subsidiary of Huatie has been sold for $2 million. Reports indicate that the company’s value plunged by about 90 percent from an initial valuation of $25 million, all in the space of one year.

Huatie HengAn originally a construction company reportedly purchased 36,500 units of hardware listed as “servers” from Canaan and Ebang in 2018.

Given that both companies don’t sell servers but instead sell crypto mining hardware, the suspicion is that Huatie HengAn pivoted from construction to cryptocurrency mining.

Back in December 2018, Huatie’s end-of-year financial report showed losses of about $14 million for its subsidiary firm. By February 2018, the total net loss had risen to $23 million.

With the total loss just $2 million off from its initial $25 million investment into the business, it appears the parent company decided to count its losses and sell the business.

If Huatie HengAn was indeed engaging in cryptocurrency mining, it would be the latest in a growing list of businesses affected by the 2018 bear market.

During the year-long bear period, the entire cryptocurrency market fell by an average of more than 80 percent across the board.

2018 – A Dreadful Year for Mining Companies

For the first half of 2018, it appeared as though mining companies were immune to the hemorrhaging prices in the cryptocurrency market. However, by Q3 2018 reports of difficult financial situations began to emerge.

Cloud mining services like Hashflare were the first to shut down citing lack of profitability. Then reports began to emerge of massive losses for mining giant Bitmain – a situation further worsened by a bet on Bitcoin Cash that ultimately backfired.

The fallout from the suspected losses has seen the company downsize its workforce, firing entire departments. Bitmain has also appointed a new CEO.

Ebang, Bitmain, and Canaan abandoned plans for massive initial public offerings (IPO). GMO also incurred losses of $12 million forcing the company to shut down its mining hardware enterprise.

Even companies like Nvidia that sold hardware for miners weren’t left out as the company is reportedly trying to offload unsold inventory as demand shrunk in 2018.

Do you think Huatie HengAn was secretly mining cryptocurrencies under the guise of could computing? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.


Images via 8BTC and Twitter (@btcinchina), Shutterstock

The post Chinese Company Lost $23 Million Allegedly Mining Cryptocurrency in Secret appeared first on Bitcoinist.com.

Source: Bitcoininst

Russia Adopts Law to Isolate Runet From the Internet

Russia Adopts Law to Isolate Runet From the Internet

Runet, the Russian segment of the internet, is about to be isolated from the rest of the web. A new law adopted by the State Duma aims to do so in order to supposedly protect it from external threats and turn it into a “sovereign” space. Russian taxpayers and end users will pay the bill for the extra security that is likely to affect internet businesses including crypto platforms.

Also read: Lithuania to Adopt Crypto Regulations Even Stricter Than the EU’s

Is Moscow Building Russia’s Great Firewall?

This week, the lower house of the Russian parliament adopted on third and final reading a draft known as the “Digital Economy National Program.” The legislation still needs the approval of the Federation Council – the upper house – before it’s signed by President Putin but the decisive support in the Duma, where over two thirds of the deputies voted in favor, is a strong indication of the political will to pass and implement the law.

Some of its key provisions include the introduction of a system that will channel Russian internet traffic through government-controlled routing points as well as granting unlimited powers to Roskomnadzor, which will be able to cut off non-complying internet providers. The country’s telecom watchdog will set up a monitoring center that will detect threats and issue instructions. Roskomnadzor will also create and maintain a national domain name system (DNS).

Russia Adopts Law to Isolate Runet From the Internet

The new legislation is designed to ensure that online data transfers between Russian citizens, businesses and organizations are executed within the country instead of being routed internationally. Russia, which has been threatened by the West with sanctions over alleged cyber attacks, wants to build its own DNS system which will remain operational even if links to the servers based abroad are interrupted.

The Runet law is scheduled to enter into force in November this year, with the rules governing Russian domains and cryptographic protection of information expected to be introduced on January 1, 2021. The bill has already attracted criticism from different corners of Russian society, not least because its implementation has been estimated to cost the state budget at least 30 billion rubles (almost $500 million). There’s also a strong suspicion that Moscow intends to use the system for censorship purposes. Some have already likened it to China’s Great Firewall and protests have been held against it.

All Depends on the Opposition to the Law

Roskomsvoboda is one of the organizations that have voiced serious concerns regarding the adoption of the Runet law. It is fighting internet censorship while promoting freedom of information and self-regulation in the online space. Roskomsvoboda was established in 2012 when Russian authorities created a banned websites register. It is constantly monitoring the government’s legislative activities regarding internet regulation including restrictions imposed on web-based sources. News.Bitcoin.com contacted the project’s leader Artem Kozlyuk for his opinion on the upcoming changes.

“Of course we, like many other public organizations and internet companies, oppose the adoption of this absurd legal act,” he said noting that lawmakers assess “external threats” inadequately without defining them and prescribing counteractions. Kozlyuk believes Russian internet infrastructure will become more centralized under the new regulations, which will actually increase cyber risks. “Any decentralized system is always more robust against external influences, but the initiators of the bill are unwilling to realize that,” he added.

Russia Adopts Law to Isolate Runet From the Internet

The activist emphasized that the legal texts are quite unclear and the sponsors of the draft want to put everything under government control, from domain names and cryptography to traffic filtering and routing. All this will create multiple threats – economic, technical and legal. On top of that, the government’s working group on IT and communications has estimated that the annual costs of maintaining the sovereign Runet will reach 134 billion rubles (over $2 billion).

“If these expenses fall on the shoulders of telecom operators, that will lead to increased internet costs for Russians. Internet connection can also be slower and constantly failing due to the filtering equipment through which all traffic will be passing,” Kozlyuk elaborated. There’s also a risk of monopolizing the internet services market and regional shutdowns and disconnections will likely be much more common.

At the same time, Roskomsvoboda’s founder thinks that it would be very hard to completely disable the rest of the internet in Russia. According to Artem Kozlyuk, the effectiveness of the blockade will depend on the position of internet providers and their readiness to resist censorship. “If they do that, then I am sure that internet resources like Telegram will continue to be accessible to Russians. Many VPN services have already refused to redirect traffic to Roskomnadzor and this is encouraging,” he commented.

Russian Crypto Industry to Be Affected

The Runet law is likely to negatively affect crypto businesses in Russia, some of which have already started looking for better regulatory climates for this and many other reasons. Russian lawmakers have been postponing the adoption of a package of bills meant to regulate digital financial assets and related matters since last year. The Duma is now expected to adopt them on third reading this spring.

Russia Adopts Law to Isolate Runet From the Internet

“Currently, cryptocurrencies in our country are in the gray zone and crypto portals are often being prosecuted. But we have cases when our lawyers successfully challenged their illegal blocking,” remarked Artem Kozlyuk. Nevertheless, prosecutors continue to refer to Russian courts requesting the prohibition of one platform or another.

“Of course, in such conditions it’s difficult to provide these services and Russian developers have been looking towards other markets, where there are fewer risks of this kind and authorities demonstrate a more positive interest in this space,” said Kozlyuk.

What consequences do you expect from the new law isolating the Russian internet from the global web? Share your thoughts on the subject in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock.


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The post Russia Adopts Law to Isolate Runet From the Internet appeared first on Bitcoin News.

Source: Bitcoinnews.com

Russian Secret Service Demanded $1M Bitcoin Bribe From Media Mogul

russia police bitcoin

Bitcoin hit the headlines in Russia again this week after it emerged the country’s law enforcement had tried to extract a bitcoin bribe worth $1 million.


FSB Illegally Sought $1.02 Million

As local cryptocurrency news media outlet Coinspot.io reported April 17, a scandal involving Russia’s secret police and the ex-head of one of the country’s biggest newspapers has boiled over, with both parties now finding themselves under arrest.

According to an ongoing court case, up to 15 members of Russia’s FSB secret service may have tried to squeeze 65 million rubles ($1.02 million) out of the estate of a media mogul in return for his freedom.

The suspect, Izvestiya ex-CEO Erast Galumov, is allegedly wanted on charges of fraud involving 43 million rubles ($670,000). Lawyers continue to query whether any wrongdoing ever took place.

According to events which have now come to light, members of an FSB bureau in Moscow, charged with investigating IT-related crimes, ended up using a pseudonym to threaten Galimov’s family.

In return for Galimov’s freedom and their safety, they said, the family would have to transfer ransom money exclusively in Bitcoin to an arranged recipient.

One of the two figures in charge of the operation, an agent by the name of Kolbov, orchestrated the bribe under the name Mikhail, also telling Gamilov’s son he should leave Russia to avoid “doing time for his father.”

In the event, several instalments of the bribe reached Kolbov and fellow perpetrator, agent Sergey Belorusov, as part of a sting operation.

A Moscow court is now determining the fate of the agents, while Galimov will nonetheless still have to protest his innocence as his own legal battle continues.

kremlin

Bitcoin, Regulation And Government Impotence

The embarrassment adds further fuel to the fire regarding Russia’s increasingly erratic attempts to control cryptocurrency use.

As Bitcoinist reported Friday, lawmakers appear unable to get to grips with the nature of decentralized networks, reflected in their latest plans to impose investment limits on Bitcoin and altcoins.

Russia has long sought to introduce hard-and-fast regulation of crypto, the expectation being that new laws will come into effect in Q4 this year. The language of the bills, critics say, nonetheless remains overly broad and fails to describe the nature of the phenomenon adequately.

Earlier in April, Bitcoinist also noted a surprising claim by a Kremlin economist that the Russian government has been covertly amassing Bitcoin worth $8.6 billion.

Last week, meanwhile, the same economist ridiculed plans by Russia and China to launch a gold-backed cryptocurrency, saying it would be automatically inferior to Bitcoin.

What do you think about the Russian police bribe scandal? Let us know in the comments below!


Images via Shutterstock

The post Russian Secret Service Demanded $1M Bitcoin Bribe From Media Mogul appeared first on Bitcoinist.com.

Source: Bitcoininst

Without a True Two-Way Peg No ‘Real’ Sidechain Exists, Says Drivechain Creator

On April 17, the founder of the Drivechain project, Paul Sztorc, published a new blog post concerning the validity of today’s so-called ‘production sidechains.’ Sztorc has declared on multiple occasions that true sidechain technology hasn’t been invented yet and even Blockstream’s Liquid protocol, dubbed “the first production sidechain,” in a critical sense is not a ‘real’ sidechain.

Also read: Statistics Show Bitcoin Cash Is a Strong Contender After Crypto Winter

Paul Sztorc Questions the Validity of the Supposed ‘First Production Sidechain’

Over the last year, there’s been a lot of discussion concerning sidechain technology and the conversation intensified when Blockstream released its Liquid protocol. The project is considered to be a sidechain that’s interoperable with the BTC network, but since the day it was launched has been criticized for its method of consensus called ‘federated distribution.’ Critics believe the federated distribution model is not really ‘peer to peer’ as it relies on a large group of exchanges and fancy multi-signature technology in order to provide trust.

Without a True Two-Way Peg No 'Real' Sidechain Exists, Says Drivechain Creator
There have been many criticisms aimed at Blockstream’s Liquid project.

Because of the injected orthogonal trust Blockstream created, Liquid critics believe there’s nothing new or exciting to a consortium of exchanges acting as the custodians for an entire sidechain system. Paul Sztorc is a critic of Liquid and he’s also the creator of an alternative sidechain project called Drivechain. On Wednesday, Sztorc wrote a blog post that questions the validity of Liquid being a ‘real’ sidechain, adding that a recent quote from Blockstream developer Greg Maxwell solidifies his argument.

“Blockstream markets Liquid as ‘the first production sidechain,’” Sztorc details, sharing multiple links where this statement is highlighted on the web. But I think that something in that phrase has to be false. Either Liquid isn’t a sidechain; or else (if sidechain is redefined) then Liquid isn’t “the first” of that thing.”

RSK chief scientist Sergio Demian Lerner stated in 2015 that a federated peg with multi-sig is the best they have right now. This is still the case to this day.

The reason Sztorc feels Liquid is not really a sidechain is because a two-way peg is a fundamental feature of sidechain technology and since Liquid never invented a two-way peg technique, Sztorc has “never seen it as a real sidechain.” One key factor that shows Liquid’s lack of this feature is the fact that Liquid does not enable the ability for third parties to develop a permissionless sidechain.

Sztorc’s paper explains that an individual couldn’t create a sidechain token similar to Bitcoin Cash and Rootstock cannot use Liquid to create an Ethereum clone. Moreover, the Drivechain developer says that the technology used in Liquid is old tech that’s been on the go for years. For instance, multi-signature has been used for thousands of years, Sztorc’s blog post highlights, and not only that, but multi-sig has been applied to BTC since 2012. Additionally, the researcher notes that other features found in Liquid have also been used in the past by other projects. Sztorc’s post continues:

I struggle to understand the claim “first production sidechain” — On one hand, it suggests novelty and innovation. But the reality is that Liquid is not particularly novel (even if there is a lot of engineering behind it).

The issue people have with Drivechain is one of trust with miners, who are ironically the very actors who secure the network.

Liquid Does Not Use a ‘True’ Two-Way Peg so in a Critical Sense It’s Not a ‘Real’ Sidechain

In addition to Sztorc’s critique, his argument is bolstered by Greg Maxwell’s own words. Sztorc underlines a specific quote made by Maxwell during a presentation on the subject of sidechains. “We describe this mechanism called a federated peg, that is a sort of step-in alternative to the true two-way peg mechanism, that works without any changes at all in the hosting network,” Maxwell stated during the presentation. In Sztorc’s opinion, Maxwell’s words make it “crystal clear” that the federated peg is “undesirable.” It seems the federated model was the easiest way for Blockstream to produce the interoperable chain design but Liquid is still forced to add a second layer of trust that’s provided by a group of ‘trusted’ exchanges. The “not your keys, not your bitcoin” adage underscores the idea that Liquid’s model and others like it look no different than custodial solutions with some clever multi-signature technology.

“The only reason [a federated peg] is used, is because of a lack of “native support” for “true two-way peg” technology,” Sztorc’s paper concludes. “Since the Fed Peg is an alternative to a “true” two-way peg, then what is it? A non-true two-way peg — a false two-way peg — So, Liquid does not use a “true” two-way peg and in that critical sense is not a “real” sidechain.”

Drivechain Development

The Drivechain (DC) developer and a group of other blockchain engineers have been steadily developing the DC project and recently released the Drive Net 22. A key difference between DC and a federated method is the project uses the trust model that already resides within the bitcoin network — mining consensus. Sztorc and other DC proponents believe that blind merge miners acting as custodians would be the least problematic solution. One way to look at it is with every block mined, merge miners vote on the sound state of the secondary chain.

This contrasts sharply with a federated two-way peg model that some believe is no different than EOS or XRP. DC supporters think that Drivechain would alleviate threats to the main chain by lessening the need for hard forks and altcoins. Hashrate would essentially remain consistent and there would be less fear of miners leaving the main chain. Moreover, the main chain could essentially scale to handle the entire globe and be able to experiment with new features without affecting the main chain.

Critics think that Liquid, on the other hand, cannot offer these features of experimental sidechains and the business model seems to be more focused on speedy transfers between exchanges, wrapped assets, and purported confidential transactions. Even so, the company seems hellbent on providing this type of interoperable chain, even though engineers have told them the security model may encounter issues in the future. The fact is, federated pegged funds can most definitely be breached if any members of the federation are compromised. If, for instance, ‘X=7’ keys are attacked then funds can be stolen which makes a group of ‘trusted functionaries’ no different than the current banking system used today.

What do you think about Sztorc’s criticism of Liquid? Do you think Liquid is a real sidechain? Let us know what you think about this project in the comments section below.


Image credits: Shutterstock, and Twitter.


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The post Without a True Two-Way Peg No ‘Real’ Sidechain Exists, Says Drivechain Creator appeared first on Bitcoin News.

Source: Bitcoinnews.com

First ‘Trustless’ P2P Bitcoin Derivatives Transaction Made By Blockstream

bitcoin contract p2p derivative

Blockstream has announced the success of a “trustless” Bitcoin forward contract transaction with Crypto Garage. The Bitcoin infrastructure developer says the news marks a watershed moment in the actualization of decentralized trading and settlement infrastructure for BTC derivatives.


Details of the Transaction

In a blog post published by Blockstream on Friday (April 19, 2019), the company said it successfully carried out a peer-to-peer (P2P) Bitcoin forward contract with Crypto Garage.

Forward contracts (forwards) are private agreements between two entities – buyer and seller, that allows the purchase and sale of an asset based on an agreed-upon future set price. Unlike futures contracts, forwards do not require a third-party intermediary.

Both parties began the trade on Tuesday (April 9, 2019) with each participant declaring collateral of 0.16 BTC each. Based on the terms of the contract, which stipulated settlement within the hour after midnight on April 16, both parties concluded the contract at a price of $5,032.

The test BTC forward contract used the price displayed on the ICE Cryptocurrency Data Feed. Blockstream says it earned about $230 on its bet to go short on BTC.

P2P Bitcoin Derivatives Trading

For Blockstream the success of this transaction indicates the possibility of creating a platform for ‘trustless’ BTC derivates trading. Presently, Bitcoin futures trading occurs on centralized platforms like BitMEX and the CME.

Blockstream argues that the partial-collateralization of futures contracts opens is a double-edged sword that opens up the possibility of huge losses.

Back in 2018, Bitcoinist reported on OKEx having to perform a $9 million clawback to cover losses from an over-leveraged $416 million BTC futures bet that went wrong.

Instead, Blockstream argues that the trustless nature of Bitcoin forwards will eliminate any counterparty risks. All each party has to do is post their maximum profit and loss exposure with the trusted price oracle doing the rest.

However, some online commentators have criticized the ‘trustless’ label put on the product by Blockstream. This is because bitcoin forwards are actually based on the use of a “trusted price feed.”

Possible Future Liquid Bitcoin Implementation

According to the blog post, the BTC forwards contract settlement took place on the Bitcoin blockchain. The company says there are plans to take the settlement process off-chain, via its Liquid Network.

Both Blockstream and Crypto Garage already have a prior partnership which saw the launch of the SETTLENET suite.

Will P2P Bitcoin forwards significantly reduce counterparty risks associated with BTC derivates trading? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.


Images via Twitter (@ercwl), Shutterstock

The post First ‘Trustless’ P2P Bitcoin Derivatives Transaction Made By Blockstream appeared first on Bitcoinist.com.

Source: Bitcoininst

Big Data Drives Agriculture, and It’ll Drive the Cannabis Industry Too

I watched a lot of Little House on the Prairie growing up. The reruns were on when I got home from school. And I could watch unsupervised because my parents deemed the show “kid friendly” – even if the very first episode features Doc Baker uttering the words “quicker than scat.”

Ma and Pa Ingalls were my reference point for the American farmer – hardworking souls who got up at the crack of dawn to till the soil, plant crops and eventually harvest them for sale. Their lives – and livelihoods – depended on their work ethic, resourcefulness and Mother Nature.

Farmers, at least in the show, could control their work ethic and ingenuity. But they couldn’t control nature. The amount of sunlight and water their crops received was out of their hands. They couldn’t protect their crops from diseases or freak weather events either.

It almost seemed unfair. America’s hardest-working people had no control over their fate.

As I grew older, I learned that farming had changed significantly from the days of Little House on the Prairie. Farming was big business now – not homesteaders going to the general store to buy seed and plows on credit. Massive machines had replaced horse-drawn plows. Farms were sophisticated operations yielding more grain and produce than they ever had before.

Intellectually, I knew farms were big businesses that were always trying to be more efficient. But emotionally, I still clung to the notion that farming was as simple as planting things and then picking the yield from the ground (or trees) to sell to customers – and that farmers had little control over what they produced.

Even my first college roommate couldn’t convince me otherwise. Wally was a senior studying turf management at Michigan State University. I had never even heard of turf management at the time. So the very existence of this major blew my mind.

Wally wanted to run golf courses (another career option I didn’t know existed). So he was studying how to grow, tend to and repair different types of grass. There is a fair amount of science involved in the process. So I should have realized there is a lot more to farming than planting and harvesting, but for some reason the lightbulb never clicked.

It wasn’t until last week that I finally accepted there’s a lot more to farming – and agriculture – than meets the eye.

What happened last week? The Cannabis Science Conference. I spent the bulk of my time in the conference’s cultivation track. And it was an eye-opening experience.

When we talk about marijuana, we spend so much time focused on THC, CBD, terpenes, medical marijuana potential, regulations, legalization, taxation, compliance, edibles, vapes and so much more that we forget cannabis is fundamentally an agricultural product. It all starts with the plant.

The amount of science that goes into growing the plant is incredible. Sensors measure everything from leaf temperature to humidity, airflow and light intensity. The microbes in the soil are closely analyzed. Blue light is shined on the plant toward the end of the grow cycle to increase terpene levels. Professional grow operators try to measure and control every variable that can affect the marijuana plant. They leave nothing to chance.

The science behind growing marijuana is relatively new. Because pot is illegal at the federal level, researchers haven’t been able to effectively study it until recently. The effects of this lack of research are more profoundly felt on the medical side of the industry. Just imagine the millions of lives that could be helped if medical marijuana treatments for pain, epilepsy, Parkinson’s disease and other ailments were widely tested and available right now.

The marijuana research gap affects the cultivation of marijuana as well. Growers are still experimenting and learning the best way to grow the plant – and the best way to create plants with different mixes of THC, CBD and terpene levels. And they’re using other plants to get some help.

For example, you might already know marijuana is a “high light” plant. It needs high levels of light to grow. In that respect, marijuana plants are similar to tomatoes. Since tomatoes and marijuana share some of the same growing characteristics, the extensive research done on growing tomatoes could ultimately help the marijuana industry.

Hearing that at the Cannabis Science Conference was my aha! moment. For the first time, I truly understood. There’s nothing warm and fuzzy about growing plants, vegetables and produce anymore. Growing crops is as data-driven as building and manufacturing cars or managing supply chains.

Big data already shapes industry, agriculture, sports and even stock trading in ways we don’t think about or necessarily appreciate today. And big data is about to take over the cannabis industry.

That’s a good thing. But I kind of wish I still believed that people planted things… those things grew… and then they got harvested. It’s a simpler way to view the world. And I’m going to miss it.

Good investing,

Vin Narayanan

Senior Managing Editor, Early Investing

The post Big Data Drives Agriculture, and It’ll Drive the Cannabis Industry Too appeared first on Early Investing.

Source: Early Investing

US Presidential Candidate Yang Promises ‘Clear’ Bitcoin Regulation

andrew yang bitcoin cryptocurrency

2020 US Presidential hopeful Andrew Yang has given the clearest sign yet that he welcomes Bitcoin, releasing a dedicated statement on cryptocurrency regulation this week.


Yang Highlights ‘Vast Potential’

Yang, whose pitch revolves around radical economic policy such as installing a Universal Basic Income (UBI), said that he would create “clear” legislation on crypto, using pro-industry legal schemes such as that of Wyoming as role models.

“Investment in cryptocurrencies and digital assets has far outpaced our regulatory frameworks in the US,” he summarized.

We should let investors, companies, and individuals know what the landscape and treatment will be moving forward to support innovation and development. The blockchain has vast potential.

As Bitcoinist has often noted, the US currently operates a patchwork approach to crypto regulation which varies from one state to another.

The implications of the policy have been significant, with businesses complaining of impossible barriers to entry and many entities barring US users from their services.

Yang agrees, saying that the absence of a standardized national policy will only end up to the country’s disadvantage.

“…[S]tates have come up with a patchwork of varying regulations that make it difficult for the US cryptocurrency markets to compete with those in other jurisdictions, especially China and Europe,” his statement continues.

…It’s time for the federal government to create clear guidelines as to how cryptocurrencies/digital asset markets will be treated and regulated so that investment can proceed with all relevant information.

Get Rid Of ‘Onerous’ BitLicense

Specific scorn came in for New York’s BitLicense, which Yang describes as “onerous.” The notoriously inefficient scheme has frequently come in for public scrutiny from users and businesses alike, all of whom complain that it fails comprehensively in its objectives to formalize the industry.

BitLicense Revisions

Instead of relying on legacy lawmakers’ perspective, Yang pledges to use efforts already underway to give crypto breathing space in the US as the basis for his entire policy.

Specifically, he would “work with the sponsors of the Token Taxonomy Act and Wyoming legislators to promote” favorable conditions, these being “largely modeled after their work.”

The complex regulation-sharing status quo between two US regulators – the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) – would also come under review.

For investors worried about the reporting requirements imposed by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), Yang would likewise “clarify” tax policy, without giving specific information.

The candidate himself has accepted Bitcoin donations for his presidential campaign since July last year.

What do you think about Andrew Yang’s cryptocurrency policy statement? Let us know in the comments below!


Images via Shutterstock

The post US Presidential Candidate Yang Promises ‘Clear’ Bitcoin Regulation appeared first on Bitcoinist.com.

Source: Bitcoininst

Every Crypto That’s Migrating to Binance Chain is Pumping

Binance rocket launch binance chain

Cryptocurrencies who are making the move to the new Binance Chain DEX are seeing some impressive price gains, which could open the floogates for many more to follow. 


Chain Migrations Are So Hot Right Now

Shortly after announcing the launch of its mainnet yesterday, as well as the details for the BNB swap, Binance revealed that Mithril (MITH) will be the first project to see its token migrated on Binance Chain.

“MITH will be one of the first projects to migrate tokens onto Binance_DEX. Our community, thank you for your support!” said Changpeng Zhao, Binance CEO.

Additionally, the cryptocurrency exchange also announced that they will be adding support for MITH/USDT trading pairs today, April 19th.

As a result, MITH price 00 surged. At the time of this writing, MITH is up more than 69 percent against the USD over the last 24 hours.

As seen in the above chart, MITH is doing very well when trading against BTC as well. Over the past day, it has marked an increase of about 57 percent.

Binance Midas Touch

While Mithril was the first project to announce its migration to Binance Chain, others are now following in its footsteps.

Red Pulse, a market intelligence platform which covers China’s economy and capital markets, has also revealed that it will be migrating to Binance’s blockchain.

Just as MITH, the price of Red Pulse’s token, PHX 00 has also surged following the announcement.

Against BTC, the token surged more than 36 percent. However, its price has since pulled back a bit as PHX is up about 20 percent up at press time.

Another token ENJIN 00, belonging to Enjin wallet, is also seeing considerable gains after announcing it would support Binance chain alongside the ENJ/USDT ticker being listed on the Binance exchange.

Incentive to Pump Price

Sudden increases in the prices of different altcoins following their migration to Binance’s blockchain surely remind of Ethereum and the ICO craze that saw prices saw to record highs when the total cryptocurrency market cap surpasses $800 billion.

Back then, a lot of newly issued tokens on the Ethereum network used to skyrocket in value following their initial coin offering, netting those who invested in them notable returns.

Of course, we have yet to see if Binance will become the new ‘token factory.’ But it will be interesting to see if more coins follow suit to Binance chain, particularly if it comes at the expense of Ethereum.

Admittedly, the incentive to pump their value after a 15-month bear market is certainly palpable at the moment.

What do you think of Binance’s blockchain and DEX? Don’t hesitate to let us know in the comments below!


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, TradingView

The post Every Crypto That’s Migrating to Binance Chain is Pumping appeared first on Bitcoinist.com.

Source: Bitcoininst

BAT Records Decent 90% Monthly Gains. What’s Next? Basic Attention Token Price Analysis

Basic Attention Token (BAT) has risen by a further 7% over the past 24 hours of trading, bringing the price of the coin up to around $0.37. The cryptocurrency has had an impressive run during April and the rest of 2019: an increase of almost 100% over the past 30 days and a further impressive 200% over the past 90 days.

BAT is currently placed as the 22nd place in the top cryptocurrencies by market cap value as it currently holds a $463 million market cap. The unique browser is currently trading at a value 57% lower than its all-time high price.

Looking at the BAT/USD 1-Day Chart:

  • Against the USD, we can see that the market has had a remarkable recovery during 2019, as a part of the Altcoin Season. The coin had managed to break above the 100 days moving average during February 2019 and has been surging ever since. BNB/USD has now climbed above the November highest at $0.34 and has recently met resistance at $0.3815 where lies a 1.272 Fibonacci Extension level.
  • From above: The nearest level of resistance above $0.39 lies between $0.3950 and $0.40. Further resistance above can then be expected at $0.4125 and $0.4313. Before reaching the July 2018 high at $0.4499, and at $0.4571 where lies the 1.618 Fibonacci Extension level.
  • From below: Initial support now lies at $0.36, $0.34 and 0.32$. Further support can then be found at $0.30 and $0.2784.
  • The trading volume has started to show signs of increasing over the past few days which is a good sign for the bullish momentum.
  • The RSI indicates that the bulls have managed to remain in control of the momentum which is steadily increasing toward the bullish favor.

bat_usd_19apr19-min

Looking at the BAT/BTC 1-Day Chart:

  • BAT has also been creating fresh highs against BTC during 2019: The coin had broken above the 100-days moving average line during the end of February and has recently surged into resistance at 7114 SAT where lies a 1.272 Fibonacci Extension level.
  • From above: If the buyers break above 7114 SAT, initial resistance lies at 7660 SAT along with the 1.414 Fibonacci Extension level. Above lies resistance at 8000 SAT, and 8500 SAT along with the 1.618 Fibonacci Extension level.
  • From below: The nearest level of support lies at 6772 SAT. Beneath this, further support is expected at 6422 SAT and 6000 SAT. Below, further support lies at 5662 SAT and 5172 SAT.
  • The trading volume has also spiked higher recently during the bullish surge.
  • The RSI has broken back above the 50 level as the bulls resume control of the momentum. However, the Stochastic RSI is about to cross over at the overbought area.

bat_btc_19apr19-min

The post BAT Records Decent 90% Monthly Gains. What’s Next? Basic Attention Token Price Analysis appeared first on CryptoPotato.

Source: Crypto Potato

Five Simple Ways to Increase Your Privacy When Using Cryptocurrency

Five Simple Ways to Increase Your Privacy When Using Cryptocurrency

Cryptocurrency without privacy is pointless. If your coins aren’t fungible, you lose much of the benefits of using cryptocurrency in the first place. Privacy isn’t just won and lost onchain though. In fact, much of the privacy gains to be made when it comes to sending, spending and trading crypto occur offchain, as you go about your business on the web.

Also read: Wasabi’s Privacy-Focused BTC Wallet Aims to Make Bitcoin Fungible Again

The Never-Ending Quest for Privacy

Privacy is like fitness: a way of life rather than a task that can be ticked off. Just as it takes time, perseverance and focus on different muscle groups to build a better body in the gym, strengthening your privacy calls for undertaking regular exercises to stem the flow of doxable information. Every time you perform an action online, you’re hemorrhaging a trove of data. This can be particularly damaging for cryptocurrency users, whose onchain actions will be recorded indefinitely.

When paired with offchain data points such as IP, email address, and cell number, it’s possible for an adversary to build a complete picture of their target. Given the ever-increasing capabilities of three-letter agencies, it’s safe to assume that in the near future, the state will be able to construct a highly detailed picture of the activities of today’s cryptocurrency users.

tl;dr: privacy matters. Here are five ways to up yours.

Use a VPN

There’s an assumption that using a VPN requires a degree of technical knowledge, and is for privacy zealots only. In fact, the majority of VPNs are foolproof and can be up and silently running in a couple of clicks – no manual port reconfiguration necessary. Opera even offers a VPN now in its desktop and Android browsers. “Enhanced online privacy is a right for everyone,” claim Opera. They’re right. A VPN will provide an added layer of privacy when logging into exchanges as well as masking the IP address associated with Bitcoin transaction relays.

Five Simple Ways to Increase Your Privacy When Using Cryptocurrency

Separate Your Regular Email From Your Crypto Email

Creating a separate email account for every cryptocurrency service you need to log into is impractical. You can, though, segment all of your crypto-related emails into a single account. This will yield twin benefits: if your main account is compromised, the hacker will have no information on or access to your crypto activities. Secondly, if you choose a fully encrypted email account such as Tutanota, prying eyes at border control and other government agencies will have no insight into your penchant for trading obscure shitcoins.

Stop Reusing Addresses

More than half of all bitcoin transactions involve addresses that have previously been used. Creating a new bitcoin address is free, instant, and provides an immediate privacy boost. If the wallet or platform you’re using doesn’t allow you to create a new address at will, stop using it. There’s a wealth of competing services out there, and switching to a more privacy-minded alternative can be done in a matter of minutes. Unless you’re transacting solely in privacy coins like monero, or are using an account-based, rather than UTXO-based, system like ethereum, you should aim for a fresh address every time.

Five Simple Ways to Increase Your Privacy When Using Cryptocurrency

Keep Your Keys and Codes Offline

Where do you store the backup 2FA codes for your trading accounts and the private keys to your crypto wallets? Are they written down, split into parts and stashed offline in a series of very safe places? Or are they hidden in plaintext in a folder on your laptop marked “anime”? You’d be surprised how many people go with the latter. Even if you’ve encrypted the folder containing your keys and codes, it’s dangerous to assume it can’t be cracked by a determined attacker since, statistically speaking, you almost certainly recycle passwords – you and 10 million others.

Keeping your private keys offline will protect you in the event of your computer being physically or digitally compromised. Even if you can’t afford a bank vault or strongbox, separating your key into parts and storing it in multiple locations – with duplicates, to ensure redundancy – will work just as well.

Always Be Shuffling

Coin mixers aren’t for the ultra-paranoid and the ultra-shady: they’re for everyone. If more people ran their coins through tumblers before withdrawing them to hardware wallets, bitcoin would become significantly more fungible, and blockchain forensics companies would suffer a major blow. Even if you can’t be motivated to mix your coins for the greater good, do it for your own. Services such as Cashshuffle for BCH make it easier than ever to obfuscate the origin of your coins, while Coinjoin, incorporated into pro-privacy wallets like Wasabi, do the same for BTC.

Five Simple Ways to Increase Your Privacy When Using Cryptocurrency

There’s something extremely comfortable about having a stash of cryptocurrency that can’t be linked to your identity safely stored in a hardware wallet that’s been backed up. It’s the digital equivalent of having a backyard bunker filled with canned goods and ammo in readiness for the apocalypse. Treat yourself to a privacy makeover and see how good it feels.

What other privacy tips do you recommend? Let us know in the comments section below.


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Source: Bitcoinnews.com