Bitcoin price plummet sees investors swap cryptocurrency for solid gold

Bitcoin price plummet sees investors swap
cryptocurrency for solid gold

Jumpy bitcoin investors turned to traditionally safe assets such as gold

or register with your social account, would like to receive lunchtime headlines Monday – Friday plus breaking news alerts by email. Anxious bitcoin speculators have sought refuge in gold amid a price plunge in the cryptocurrency. Sales of gold coins surged fivefold last week at Frankfurt-based trader CoinInvest, with phones ringing off the hook and emails pouring in from nervous investors looking to cash out.

CoinInvest director Daniel Marburger told the Standard the surge in demand has continued. "It is a constant flow into gold," he said. Although bitcoin recovered to $11,700 (£8,430) on Monday morning after plunging to $10,000 (£7,187) last week, investors are still nervous, according to Mr Marburger. "Bitcoin could not make a clear counter-trend last week and gold is on a run at the moment with 7 per cent gains since its December lows," he said.

What is Bitcoin?

According to Mr Marburger, speculators are seeking safety from the "crazy volatility" of the cryptocurrency, whose value has collapsed 40 per cent in the past month. "Gold has a sustainable track record over decades and is an asset you actually hold in your hands. People are looking for something to touch rather than an investment where only the belief in it is the value," he said. "Bitcoin has proven one time more than it is based on speculation." Some experts maintained that the cryptocurrency will stabilise in the longer term.

Benjamin Dives, CEO of London Block Exchange, which plans to launch a direct sterling-to-bitcoin exchange, said bitcoin's volatile week was not a cause for concern. "[Some investors] may not be comfortable with the markets moving [downwards] and so are ‘cashing out’ to invest in traditionally stable assets, such as gold," he said. "These people are likely new to cryptocurrency exposure or, as is standard in the investment industry, were just ensuring profits in the short term. The result for cryptocurrencies is a dip in the market, which is natural and healthy."

He added that the exchanges actually prove the cryptocurrency's concrete value. "As the market matures, we can be sure of more stability in the future and that is when these investors will be looking for a re-entry point. Unfortunately for them, their transition to gold may cause them to miss out on the gold rush," he concluded. A year ago, in January 2017, one bitcoin was valued at £900. Many economists remain sceptical about its worth.

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Indian Banks Suspending Bitcoin Exchange Accountsmore

Indian Banks Suspending Bitcoin Exchange Accounts

Bitcoin exchanges are under fire in India,

as many of the nation’s top banks have suspended or greatly curtailed functionality on exchange accounts. State Bank of India (SBI), Axis Bank, HDFC Bank, ICICI Bank and Yes Bank have all taken strong action toward crypto exchanges, either closing accounts or severely limiting functionality. The banks cite the risk of dubious transactions, according to local reports.

The news follows the request of advocate Bivas Chatterjee who recently filed a public interest litigation (PIL) in Calcutta to impose immediate regulations on Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. Additionally, the Ministry of Finance referred to Bitcoin as a ponzi scheme before the end of last year. The international mood toward Bitcoin has continued to tighten, particularly with US Treasury secretary Steven Mnuchin stating that the G20 nations will begin working together to make sure that Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are properly regulated.

Bitcoin Laundering Less Than One Percent of All Transactions

A recent report from the joint Bitcoin analysis team of FDD and Ellicit,

a Bitcoin forensics company, indicates that less than one percent of all Bitcoin transactions involve money laundering. The report, written to help analyze the flow of funds and the danger of money laundering, has indicated that money laundering isn’t nearly the problem some critics of cryptocurrency believe.

The report states:

“The amount of observed Bitcoin laundering [is] small and darknet marketplaces such as Silk Road and, later, AlphaBay are [generally] the source of almost all of the illicit Bitcoins laundered through conversion services.”

The report also indicates that the vast majority of illicit transactions using Bitcoin were processed in Europe, receiving more than five times as many illicit transactions as North America.

AML processes must improve

The report suggests that the best way to combat such illicit activity is through more stringent anti-money laundering (AML) measures. The report states that the only way to manage the illicit transaction is for “Financial authorities in all jurisdictions [to] increase AML enforcement.”

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Keep Calm And Hodl? CNBC Guest Tells Bitcoin Critic to Piss Off’more

Keep Calm And Hodl? CNBC Guest Tells Bitcoin Critic to ‘Piss Off’

The mainstream media debate over Bitcoin

as a success or failure approached live comedy this week after a “brawl” broke out between guests on a CNBC panel. In an exchange which ended an edition of the network’s increasingly notorious Fast Money segment, regular contributor and RiskReversal.com editor Dan Nathan told Evercore ISI technician Rich Ross to “go piss off” after he criticized Bitcoin’s performance.

Ross had previously maintained that Bitcoin was a poor investment choice in the past few months due to its near-50% fall this week. Traditional stock investments, on the other hand, had allegedly fared better, with Ross giving the example of Boeing’s 200% gains since 2016. As Zerohedge notes, reproducing the unedited version of the exchange, Ross had failed to note Bitcoin’s annual gains of over 1000% in 2017 alone. Nathan labeled him “glib” to deride it. “You’ve been wrong, so don’t say that I’m glib,” Ross retorted before Nathan weighed in with the fateful remark:

“You don't know what I've done, you don't know what my call is, so go piss off, seriously.”

The episode continues Fast Money’s somewhat bizarre approach to Bitcoin reporting. In December, the segment made headlines for suddenly switching allegiances to become extremely bullish on altcoin Bitcoin Cash. At the time, its dedicated Twitter account began publishing material which strongly criticized Bitcoin, telling respondents to “deal with” the rise of Bitcoin Cash instead. That style of content has since not made a return.

Yale Prof. Shiller Thinks Bitcoin’s ‘Bubble’ Could Actually ‘Linger 100 Years

Yale economics professor and Nobel Laureate Robert Shiller has admitted

in an interview with CNBC Thursday, Jan. 18., that he now “doesn’t know what to make of Bitcoin ultimately” after earlier calling it “the best example of a bubble”. In fresh comments Thursday, several months after he told host Brian Kelly it was Bitcoin’s “story”  not its value that had sparked public interest in it, Shiller told reporters “it [Bitcoin] has no value at all unless there is some common consensus that it has value. Other things like gold would at least have some value if people didn't see it as an investment,” repeating a common narrative that investment in Bitcoin is like the 17th-century Tulip Mania. Though he admitted his uncertainty as to what Bitcoin’s fate will be, Shiller overall remains sceptical,

stating:

“[Bitcoin] might totally collapse and be forgotten and I think that's a good likely outcome but it could linger on for a good long time, it could be here in 100 years.”

Bitcoin’s two-day slump this week has partially recovered to challenge $12,000, making it worth over 160 percent more than when Shiller made his previous bubble claims in early September, 2017.

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How to make smart investments in cryptocurrency

How to make smart investments in cryptocurrency

The price of Bitcoin rose over 1000% in 2017,

meaning every $1 invested turned into $1000 in just 12 months. Bitcoin isn’t done yet, and other cryptocurrencies are now seeing similarly rapid growth. This bundle helps you make the most of this remarkable trend, even with a small initial investment. You’ve probably seen on the news recently that the value of Bitcoin has reached an all-time high. But many other digital currencies are expected to see even bigger growth in the coming years. The Complete Cryptocurrency Investment Bundle shows you how to make money from this trend with five in-depth courses. You can get the bundle now for $24 at the PopSci Shop.

The price of Bitcoin rose over 1000 percent in 2017, meaning every $1 invested turned into $1000 in just 12 months. Bitcoin isn’t done yet, and other cryptocurrencies are now seeing similarly rapid growth. This bundle helps you make the most of this remarkable trend, even with a small initial investment. Through concise video lessons, you learn about the underlying blockchain technology and how to purchase your first coins.

The courses also help you assess the market, store your coins securely, and invest in emerging currencies like Ethereum. The final course even shows you how to earn free coins with Steemit. Along with the video courses, the bundle includes an audiobook, meaning you can keep learning on your way to work.

Chuck Reynolds

Marketing Dept
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What Is Blockchain?

What Is Blockchain? 

All of a sudden, blockchain is everywhere.

The technology, which was invented in 2008 to power Bitcoin when it launched a year later, is being used for everything from copyright protection to sexual consent (yes, really).Considering the daily churn of news around blockchain, not to mention the skyrocketing value of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies that rely on the technology, you may be wondering what the hell blockchain actually is. It’s actually a pretty simple concept, though things quickly get more complicated the harder you look. With that in mind, here are a few different ways to wrap your head around blockchain, from straightforward definitions to far-reaching metaphors.

How Does Blockchain Work?

To start, here’s the simplest explanation with no metaphors or hyperbole. In the language of cryptocurrency, a block is a record of new transactions (that could mean the location of cryptocurrency, or medical data, or even voting records). Once each block is completed it’s added to the chain, creating a chain of blocks: a blockchain. Because cryptocurrencies are encrypted, processing any transactions means solving complicated math problems (and these problems become more difficult over time as the blockchain grows). People who solve these equations are rewarded with cryptocurrency in a process called “mining.”

If you’ve always wanted to own some cryptocurrency, a new app might be a good way to get your hands.f you own any cryptocurrency, what you really have is the private key (basically just a long password) to its address on the blockchain. With this key you can withdraw currency to spend, but if you lose the key there’s no way to get your money back. Each account also has a public key, which lets other people send cryptocurrency to your account. Information on the blockchain is also publicly available. It’s decentralized, meaning it doesn’t rely on a single computer or server to function. So any transactions are instantly visible to everyone. That brings us to our first metaphor: the public ledger.

Blockchain Is Like a Public Ledger

If you send Bitcoin (or some other cryptocurrency) to a friend, or sell it, that information is publicly available on the blockchain. Other people may not know your identity, but they know exactly how much value has been transferred from one person to another. Many people see blockchain as an alternative to traditional banking. Instead of needing a bank or some other institution to verify the transfer of money, you can use blockchain and eliminate the middle man.

“The Internet of Value”

Building off the idea of a public ledger, another popular way to describe blockchain is as the internet of value. The idea is pretty simple: the internet made it possible to freely distribute data online, blockchain does the same thing for money. Instead of relying on newspapers, television and radio (which are mainly controlled by big corporations), the internet gives everyone a voice—for better or worse. Blockchain and cryptocurrency make it just as easy to transfer money across the world by bypassing traditional middlemen like banks and even governments.So you’re ready to buy some cryptocurrency. Maybe you’ve been reading up on blockchain technology…

Blockchain Is Like Google Docs

Here’s a clever metaphor for blockchain from William Mougayar, the author of The Business Blockchain: blockchain is like Google Docs. Before Google Docs, if you wanted to collaborate on a piece of writing with someone online you had to create a Microsoft Word document, send it to them, and then ask them to edit it. Then you had to wait until they made those changes, saved the document, and sent it back to you.

Google Docs fixed that by making it possible for multiple people to view and edit a document at the same time. However, most databases today still work like Microsoft Word: only one person can make changes at a time, locking everyone else out until their done. Blockchain fixes that by instantly updating any changes for everyone to see. For banking, that means that any money transfers are simultaneously verified on both ends. Blockchain could also be used in the legal business or architecture planning— really any business where people need to collaborate on documents.

Blockchain Is Like a Row of Safes

Here’s another useful explanation from online forum Bitcoin Talk. This one does a really good job of explaining how public and private

keys work:

Imagine there are a bunch of safes lined up in a giant room somewhere. Each safe has a number on it identifying it, and each safe has a slot that allows people to drop money into it. The safes are all made of bulletproof glass, so anybody can see how much is in any given safe, and anybody can put money in any safe. When you open a bitcoin account, you are given an empty safe and the key to that safe. You take note of which number is on your safe, and when somebody wants to send you money, you tell them which safe is yours, and they can go drop money in the slot.

 

After rising from under $1,000 to almost $20,000 in the past year, Bitcoin crashed spectacularly…

Blockchain Is Like DNA

Finally, this one, from Robin Chauhan on Medium, is a little far out, but I like it. Blockchain is a record of transactions, spreading across the internet as more people use cryptocurrencies. Similarly, DNA is a record of genetic transactions and mutations that spread as life expanded across the earth. Both become more complicated over time as our DNA evolves and new blocks are added to the blockchain.

Each blockchain (Bitcoin, Ether, Ripple) is like as a distinct species (human, chimpanzee, etc.). A blockchain can also be forked (like with Bitcoin Cash) to create a competing currency in the same way that two distinct species can share common ancestor. Of course, changes to DNA don’t happen easily—scientists believe it takes about a million years for a genetic mutation to catch on—and building a blockchain isn’t easy, either. The process of evolution and natural selection is a little bit like mining, a complicated series of steps that creates something incredible.

Chuck Reynolds

Marketing Dept
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New Debit Card Helps to Unlock Your Digital Currency

New Debit Card Helps to Unlock
Your Digital Currency

The common question you hear from any doubter of digital currencies

and their future in our world is “what is the use case?” Often, people look at Bitcoin and see its shortcomings as a medium of transfer, and use that as their justification for being short digital currencies. Spending Bitcoin or any other digital currency is not currently all that easy. It takes time to convert back into fiat currency, and there is often a large fee. A Singapore-based company Paycent aims to make it easier for buyers and sellers to use their digital currency. Right now they are in the process of releasing the integrated debit card which gives customers the capability to unlock their funds instantly.

Bridging the gap between fiat and digital currencies

The overall goal of the company is to make it possible for mobile and cashless payments to be accepted anywhere. Blockchain is the underlying technology that enables this advancement, and the team has worked hard to bridge the gap between fiat and digital currencies. The new Paycent integrated debit card is the key to bringing digital currencies into our day-to-day life. It has no yearly maintenance fees if the card is active and in use. You don’t need to hold a PYN token to get it. A user will pay only one time fees for card activation and delivery with any digital currency.

Pre-registration for the debit card has started on Jan. 15, and only 20,000 cards will be delivered in this first batch. The selling point for many of the early users of this card will be the low fee of 1.5 percent, paid in PYN tokens, which is much superior to the current transaction fees on most digital currencies. The hybrid wallet along with the debit card is planned to be live in the first week of March and it is currently available for registration on the Paycent website. Once operational, the card will work at more than 36 mln points in over 200 countries. Users will be able to convert any digital currency to fiat in real time basis and can use it via Paycent card at online and offline stores and cash withdrawal at ATMs globally.

More money and better transparency

Paycent has set themselves apart in a few ways. One is the manner in which they are conducting their ICO. Rather than releasing all of their tokens at once, the team at Paycent decided to release them in eight phases. The company says, there are two major benefits to this method. First, it helps the protocol by proving the concept along the way, which would then result in more money being earned. It also increases transparency and aligns incentives within the network better. Users are motivated to buy earlier by giving bonus Paycent tokens (PYN) of varying amounts to each phase.

The ICO commenced in November and has proven to be a success. Phase one of the ICO was successful, with 80 percent of tokens distributed to over 14,000 different contributors. Paycent’s end goal is to help users worldwide enter the cashless world. The true potential of a company like this comes from the fact it can create an infrastructure that users who have never had access to banks will be able to engage with. In this regard, it is an inspiring goal with limitless market potential. The original mission of Bitcoin was to create a new financial system that wasn’t dependent upon any single authority, and this might finally be possible with Paycent.

Chuck Reynolds


Marketing Dept
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Gaming Blockchain Platform Helps Investors Find Best Project to Invest in

Gaming Blockchain Platform Helps Investors Find Best Project to Invest in

The gaming industry is experiencing a significant boom

as emerging innovations are causing people to spend more time on gaming platforms especially with multiple gamers systems. These developments and attractions are playing important roles in placing the gaming industry as one of the most advanced markets, with revenue exceeding $116 bln in 2017.

The bigger stage is opening for the industry with the popularity of decentralized technologies. One of the first who saw the opportunity are the creators of Game Machine.The project can be described as a global open platform where gamers, investors and developers can work together, complement each other and help the whole industry to grow faster. While developing the project team considered all the parties. For gamers, they offer in-game items for their favorite titles. As for the developers, the system will provide them an opportunity to focus on the segments of their target audience, raise funds for products and start an ICO. Also, the valuable project search for investors was simplified. Briefly summarizing, Game Machine unites all the participants of the market.

Analytics for investors

Focusing on the investment opportunities within the industry, a new project Game Machine implements Blockchain technology through its Proof-of-Authority (or Proof-of-Gamer) protocol. One of the best advantages for investors is that Game Machine token holders will be able to sell their tokens to gamers and developers for a better price. They also will get a chance to choose only high-quality products to invest as they can see how many users are really interested in the projects which are located on the crowdfunding platform.

Other benefits that accrue to investors within the project includes the opportunity of being invited to the special club with exclusive big discounts and sales for the majority of crowd sales from crowdfunding platform. Top-tier investors will be able to get a part of all tokens, released by every project. Game Machine already boasts of a working product with more than 60,000 registrations, having more than 40,000 in-game items withdrawn and over 500 mln GMC tokens mined. Hence the release of the Open Beta version which was being focused upon by the Game Machine team for several months. The platform consists of a miner and a store of items for popular games such as CS:GO and Dota 2. Gamers all over the world are showing great interest.

App release and token sale

Game Machine team is focused on releasing its first version of the app for advertisers and also for investors. The mobile version of Game Machine Client for Android is already out and the iOS version is in development now and is scheduled for launch in March 2018. Further, we will see the team set up a product for exchanging tokens and also the creation of an API for the third party resources for the platform. As you see, the Game Machine team is planning a serious work during this year. Also, the project is looking for the developers to join the crowdfunding platform and already has some agreements.

In its currently active token sale which runs until Jan. 31 2018. After the end of the tokensale, Game Machine is going to release its tokens on three grand exchanges. On this very moment project has raised $1.5 mln. The main aim of the team is to take a big segment in the growing game industry market and to unite all the participants.

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Tom Lee Says BTC Will Hit 25000 in 2018 Advises Aggressive’ Buying At Market Low

Tom Lee Says BTC Will Hit $25,000 in 2018, Advises ‘Aggressive’ Buying At Market Low

Co-founder and Fundstat strategist Tom Lee predicted

that Bitcoin (BTC) will hit $25,000 by the end of this year in an interview with CNBC today, Jan. 18. Lee had previously forecasted that BTC would only reach this mark by 2022. The Wall Street strategist told CNBC today that now by 2022 he sees BTC hitting the $125,000 mark. Lee’s predictions comes after a very volatile week in the crypto market, with BTC hitting below $10,000, dipping even lower than it did during the market crash Dec. 22. Just days before the December crash, Bitcoin had hit an all-time high over $20,000. Lee predicts that $9,000, or just below the lows seen this week, will be the price floor for BTC this year. He sees another market dip as an opportunity

for investors:

"We expect bitcoin's major low to be $9,000, and we would be aggressive buyers around that level […] We view this $9,000 as the biggest buying opportunity in 2018."

Lee also offered predictions for several altcoins, forecasting that Ethereum and Ethereum Classic would see about 90 percent growth by the end of the year, and NEO 50 percent. Today, the crypto market began its bounce back, with BTC up almost 15 percent and the top 20 altcoins up as much as 70 percent in the 24 hours to press time.

Bitcoin Backing Firms Feel

the Crypto Crash Pinch

With Bitcoin shedding 50 percent of its value in little under a month,

those firms who vocally rode the wave on the up are now feeling the terrify drop in terms of loss of their own market value. Companies such as Overstock, which has some of its fortunes locked up in the digital currency, as well as Square Payments, which announced plans to allow for some Bitcoin buying and selling, have been hit hard by this crash.

Taking a beating

While the numbers being tracked by these Bitcoin-backing firms are nothing compared to the actual losses being suffered by the cryptocurrencies, they are directly correlated. Square showed a loss of five percent or $90 mln, this week as the company which is led by Twitter’s CEO Jack Dorsey ended with a value of $15.1 bln. Overstock, a longtime supporter of Bitcoin going back to 2014, fell 11 percent ending with a value of $1.8 bln thanks to the roughly $200 mln loss. This latest drop in the crypto market has been put down to the uncertainty emanating from Korea with their apparent bank of cryptocurrencies on the cards. This pressure from regulators also adds teeth to the fears in dealing with cryptocurrencies in major firms.

Renaming regrets

There are also instances where companies who have tried to jump on the Bitcoin and Blockchain bandwagon have found that the wagon is currently in the shop for repairs. A number of firms have changed their focus, tact or simply their name, to profit from the hype and mania around cryptocurrencies. However, the other, ugly, side to this ecosystem is the violent volatility that needs to be stomached. Kodak, perhaps better known for their cameras, fell eight percent. The company has announced plans to offer a cryptocurrency known as KodakCoin at the end of the month, initially sending shares up 60 percent on the day of the announcement. Shares of Riot Blockchain, once a biotech firm dubbed Bioptix, shed 17 percent Tuesday, even shares of Long Blockchain, once Long Island Iced Tea, shed two percent.

Lessons up for grabs

While the future, as it always is, is uncertain for the crypto ecosystem, there are lessons to be learned in this latest Bitcoin ‘death.’ Bitcoin has been dead and buried countless times as its volatile nature is too much for some to take, sending them fleeing. However, it has shown stronger and stronger resistance and ability to bounce back over the years and the crashes. Something that companies that are facing unprecedented dips will need to be aware of. Bitcoin believer Max Keiser explains these movements in a graph he tweeted.. This pattern will repeat all the way to Bitcoin $100,000 and beyond..

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Wonders of Naming the Company Blockchain’ or Bitcoin’

Wonders of Naming the Company ‘Blockchain’ or ‘Bitcoin’

Bitcoin and Blockchain is all the rage

in more than just individual investors’ circles, and companies are trying to cash in on the craze. While some are launching their own ICOs, such as Kodak, others have merely tacked ‘Blockchain’ onto their name and seen success.In a move that seems dangerously similar to what happened in the 90s with the dot-com boom, the ‘Blockchain revolution’  taken on by some companies requires careful scrutiny as much of it is smoke and mirrors.Speaking of smoke, the cannabis revolution that followed its legalization in a few states also came with a similar warning from the SEC about business cashing in on that hype.

Bitcoin services

Among the host of companies trying to wrangle their way into the hyped market is the company formerly known as Tulip BioMed – now Bitcoin Services. This change in name and direction saw the company's stock increase by a massive 43,500 percent last year. To their credit, the name change came back in 2016 and only took off last year in November with the hype that came with the cryptocurrency market in the mainstream. Bitcoin Services financial filings from around that time offer few clues that the company was doing anything specific to justify the hysteria. The same can be said of its website, which generally lacks press releases and other investor information, apart from contact information.

Not alone

Bitcoin Services probably takes the top spot in terms of growth thanks to its name change, but there is a host of others that have made anywhere between 309 and 20,445 percent gains thanks to the change, as shown below.

Quick buck

Another worrying trend that is reminiscent of the dot-com boom is that these gains do not last long as people quickly catch on or regulators step in. Hong Kong-based UBI Blockchain Internet—previously known as JA Energy—soared more than 20,000 percent before regulators halted buying and selling.

Bubble signs?

Those who believe the entire cryptocurrency market is one big bubble often point to the similarities in hype between the dot-com bubble and these happen around companies taking advantage of the mania and speculation. It remains to be seen if the cryptocurrency market can weather this mania better than other similar bubbles.

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Bitcoin Virus Has Infected 30 Of Russian Devices’: Putin Advisor

Bitcoin Virus ‘Has Infected 30% Of Russian Devices’: Putin Advisor

 

Russia’s chief presidential advisor on the Internet

has stated a Bitcoin mining virus has infected up to 30 percent of Russian computers. Speaking in interviews with RNS and RBC, Herman Klimenko said that although infection rates varied by region and device, it involved at least 20 percent of machines. “In regions with lower bandwidth instances are reduced, but we’re looking at 20 to 30 percent of devices being infected – iPhones and Macs are less prone,” he commented.

The figures, if true, are alarming, yet Klimenko’s assessment has already come under public criticism. Speaking to RBC in light of the findings, Internet Ombudsman Dmitry Marinichev called them “rubbish.” “These viruses appear for example on devices of users who have given permission for them to start running,” he said, adding the issue was not about Bitcoin mining but stolen credit card details and similar characteristics. Klimenko, meanwhile, also chimed in on the motives of the hackers behind the recent international WannaCry cyberattack. “In the case of WannaCry, the perpetrators managed to accrue around $50-100,000,”

he told RNS.

“I’m therefore convinced the perpetrators of WannaCry were children because they do not understand where they can earn money in the Internet sector.”

Earlier this month, Russian research lab Group-IB warned of a domestic Android virus circulating consumer devices which would gain access to and empty any associated bank accounts.

Bitcoin, Altcoins Meet London Art As ‘Gray’ Artsy Nets $50 Million
 

 

London’s “tradition-bound” Cork Street art empire is getting an innovation injection

as customers meet Bitcoin and even Monero as payment options. As the BBC reports Tuesday, one gallery, Dadiani Fine Arts, has begun accepting cryptocurrency in what its owner describes as an “intuitive” move. "This is not a demand-driven decision at all, it's intuitive based on the way things are going," Elena Dadiani told the publication. With the global art market worth around $60 bln and average purchase amounts high, the benefits of additional payment channels are obvious. The gallery is not stopping at Bitcoin; Ethereum, Ethereum Classic, Dash, Litecoin, and soon Monero will also be featured. "For me, the Blockchain is going to be the biggest thing since the Internet,” nonetheless hinting she intends to convert at least part of the payments to fiat currency as a matter of course.

Like Blockchain, meanwhile, the art industry itself is undergoing rapid change. Artsy, the online art marketplace seeing huge expansion, this week announced the closure of a $50 mln funding round, something already causing suspicion in a manner strikingly similar to some recent Ethereum-based ICOs. “The news has left many in the industry with two questions,” industry news resource Artnet reports describing the platform as a “gray market.” “First, since Artsy has chosen to keep its actual valuation pitch-black to the public, how much is the company really worth? Second, and just as important, how is that valuation justifiable?”

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