Top Crypto News – 30/11/2017

Dash: The secure cryptocurrency attracting attention

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The cryptocurrency boom relies on the development of blockchain, known as the technology of blocks, with different methods of payment. Although Bitcoin is the most famous of these currencies, it is not the only one. Dash is one of the many alternatives, but it has a particularly notable feature.

Dash is the first decentralised cryptocurrency which is becoming one of the most accepted forms of payments in the business world. This digital coin allows instant and private payments through its network and in brick and mortar outlets. Its currently accepted in most exchange bureaus.

Based on P2P (peer-to-peer), it is used in the network for the transcription of data of every type, and Dash offers a second level of security thanks to the ‘Masternode’, an evolution of conventional nodes used by Blockchain. The system requires a cryptographic test where users manage the nodes with at least 1,000 Dash. The system ensures the network against attacks known as ‘twins’ which makes them very difficult to operate. Converting the currency in the safest and most anonymous way.

Investments in currency markets can be especially volatile, which makes this type of investment very popular among investors that want quick results. However, most professional investors recommend diversifying between several type of instruments in order to manage risk levels.

Written by Digital Look

 

Wallet Demo Showcases Lightning-Like Network for Ethereum

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Two technologies designed for bitcoin and ethereum appear to be converging.

A new video demo released this week, presented by ETH Zurich researcher Arthur Gervais, shows how ethereum wallets might function with a mechanism like Lightning Network – a payments protocol originally designed to enhance bitcoin.

It’s a notable step, as off-chain payments networks have long been touted as scaling solutions for blockchains such as bitcoin and ethereum. And although the wallets are not yet ready for use, the demo, from Gervais’ new project, called Liquidity Network, signals that more people in the ethereum community are interested in adopting the technology.

To users, the wallet functions similarly to other ethereum wallets, in that it allows users to send and receive ether. But under the hood, the wallet is more complex, allowing users to connect to so-called “hubs” if they can’t connect directly.

In the demo, Gervais shows one user depositing 100 wei (a tiny division of ether) into a hub.

Since the connection can then be used to send payments to any other user connected to the same hub, Gervais instantly sends 50 wei payments to one user and 30 wei to another.

Liquidity Network is working on a relatively new off-chain network for ethereum, that could possibly provide an alternative to the well-known in-development network, Raiden.

However, Liquidity uses slightly different technology modeled after the Revive payment channel – a model first put forth by the Liquidity Network founders in a white paper in September.

Paint merging via Shutterstock

Infamous Discarded Hard Drive Holding 7,500 Bitcoins Would be Worth $80 Million Today

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During the summer of 2013, while cleaning out his desk, a Welsh man named James Howells threw away a hard drive from his broken Dell Laptop.

Unfortunately, he realized several months later that the drive held 7,500 Bitcoin mined back in 2009. At the time, with Bitcoin approaching and finally just exceeding $1,000 in price, the scrapped hard drive would have been worth over $7 mln.

The story created a lot of hype about the rising the value of Bitcoin and the fortunes – or misfortunes – of the currency’s first miners and investors. Many of them had dabbled with the currency while it was in its infancy, only to forget about it and fail to backup their wallets.

Howells, who essentially dumped $7.5 mln (£4 mln) onto a landfill in Newport, Wales was of course furious, disappointed and dumbstruck. Over the next few years, he may have come to terms with his loss, only to have old wounds reopened as the currency began its long climb this year. At press time, Bitcoin’s price stands at $10,700, giving that trashed hard drive a value of over $80 mln.

‘That’s a bad idea’

Howell had mined those 7,500 coins himself as a hobby back when Bitcoin was a mere plaything for the technologically inclined. Howells related:

“You know when you put something in the bin, and in your head, say to yourself ‘that’s a bad idea’? I really did have that.”

Howells explains how he stopped mining when his girlfriend complained about the noise from the laptop and the heat it was producing. When he spilled lemonade on the laptop the following year, he dismantled it for parts. He initially kept the hard drive for a few years before finally discarding it.

Back in 2013, Howells said:

“I’m at the point where it’s either laugh about it or cry about it. Why aren’t I out there with a shovel now? I think I’m just resigned to never being able to find it.”

Once can only imagine how the unfortunate Howells feels today.

“Don’t tell my Wife”

Howells isn’t the only person to experience the pain of such financial loss. An Australian man, who wishes to remain anonymous for fear of the wrath of his wife, has also come forward with a tale of thousands of missing Bitcoin.

Alex, as he wants to be called, describes how in 2009 he mined “thousands, plural” of Bitcoin as part of a novel new idea. Then when the program for mining got a little too big and cumbersome, he gave up, deleted the program, and stashed his Bitcoin on a cheap USB. He said:

“The thinking was that it’s offline, not on my PC, so in case something bad happened to the PC — [if] it blew up, or [was] hacked — I still had a backup.”

Around the end of 2013, when the Bitcoin price peaked at just over $1,000, he suddenly remembered his wallet:

“[I plugged] the USB stick back in to try and access the file, but the stick died. It was one of those cheap made-in-China ones.”

Just like Howells, Alex has had to watch the Bitcoin price balloon, counting the tens of millions of dollars he lost everytime a new milestone is reached.

“Worst mistake of my life. Never back up anything on a cheap Chinese-made disk or USB stick.”

Lost forever

Other stories of lost Bitcoins abound, including that of a Gizmodo editor who threw away a hard drive containing 1,400 Bitcoins in 2012. He paid $25 for the coins, at an average price of only 1.5 cents each. They would now be worth almost $15 mln.

These cases and others inspired a new study that has estimated that as many as four million Bitcoin are gone forever. The study puts the majority of the lost coins in the category of ‘out of circulation’ as of course, those coins still exist on the Blockchain, they just cannot be accessed.

One difficulty in estimating the number of “lost” Bitcoin is uncertainty over whether Satoshi is still alive and still has access to his private keys. The study’s numbers assume that Satoshi’s approximately one million Bitcoins are lost, but of course, nobody can be certain of that.

Keeping coins safe

One of the first rules for Bitcoin newbies is to keep your coins off exchanges where they are vulnerable to online threats. However, there are a number of offline threats that can also occur.

These two case studies show just how easy it is to lose a digital asset that is not stored online; from a broken hard drive to a corrupt USB, even misplacing the thing becomes a problem.

Matthew Unger, founder and CEO of iComply Investor Services Inc. suggested:

“Just like you keep some cash in your wallet, some in your bank account and perhaps the really valuable stuff in a safe, you need to manage digital currencies in the same way.”

Written by CoinTelegraph

 

Wall Street Journal: Nasdaq to Offer Bitcoin Futures in June 2018

 

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The Nasdaq exchange may begin to offer Bitcoin futures as early as June 2018, according to a report issued by the Wall Street Journal. The report indicates that the stock exchange will follow suit behind the two Chicago-based markets that have already indicated the specifics of their Bitcoin futures plans.

While regulatory approval is still pending, the reality that Bitcoin futures are an in-demand option has driven a number of exchanges to at least consider the possibility. According to John D’Agostino, a former Nymex executive and current exchange board member:

“Every research department of every regulated exchange is saying, ‘Can we do this?’ “The majority of costs associated with that are marketing. If people want to trade this thing, why wouldn’t you? This is a gift from the heavens.”

According to the report, the exchange would add the Bitcoin contract onto its existing Nasdaq Futures platform (NFX). The platform was launched in 2015 and has mainly focused on energy trading, but would now be potentially repurposed to include cryptocurrency contracts.

While CME Group has a much larger futures market than Nasdaq, the latter has greater name recognition among retail investors. Nasdaq’s imprimatur might make a significant difference for ordinary investors who might be on the fence about whether to buy digital currency.

Written by CoinTelegraph

 

Coinbase Wins Partial Victory Over IRS, Government Data Request Reduced

 

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Coinbase has won a partial victory in their ongoing legal battle with the IRS regarding the disclosure of private user information. According to Coinbase, the government initially sought records on over 500,000 users in their efforts to catch tax cheats. After months of legal wrangling, Coinbase announced that the IRS has reduced their records request to only 14,000 users, a 97% reduction.

Coinbase also announced that the amount of documentation requested by the IRS has been substantially reduced. The company’s blog post did not reveal the criteria used to determine the 14,000 “high volume” users the IRS is interested in. Nor did Coinbase reveal the extent of the documentation that the tax agency is now seeking.

Setting precedents

The partial win for the cryptocurrency exchange is an important step in general cryptocurrency tax consideration. According to Coinbase, most companies simply hand information over to the IRS, but they sought to maintain user privacy:

“Coinbase started this process more than 12 months ago, and while today’s result is not the complete victory we hoped for, it does represent a substantial and unprecedented victory for the industry and the hundreds of thousands of customers that would have been unfairly targeted if it weren’t for our action. Although we are disappointed not to be able to entirely defeat the summons, we are proud to fight for our customers and in the result we were able to achieve as a small company against a large government agency.”

The company promised that, should they be required to submit the requested information on the final 14,000 users, they would inform them before the actual disclosure takes place. The company’s legal staff is currently evaluating the order before proceeding.

Written by CoinTelegraph

 

 

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