In Ethereum Mist browser found a serious vulnerability

Representatives of the Ethereum Foundation reported that the Ethereum Mist browser, popular to view decentralized applications, may pose a threat to data leakage on private keys of users.

Identified a bug classified as representing “high severity” and affects all versions of the browser, although not for browser-compatible Ethereum Wallet. A vulnerability has been found in the underlying software of the Electron, due to the delay in the update which users of the browser have come under risks. To solve this problem, the developers propose to go on AT the Muon, which is a fork of Electron.

In this regard, users are recommended to refrain from placing questionable sites and install Ethereum Wallet as a primary means for the control means.

Recall that a critical vulnerability in smart contract cost users multisig wallets Parity $160 million, including $98 million of the project founder Gavin wood(Gavin Wood). And now the team is Parity Technologies calls for a hard forks Ethereum to unlock these funds.


Moscow does not refuse from plans to launch its own cryptocurrency

The government abandoned plans to create its own cryptocurrency and continues to discuss this issue. This was stated by the head of the Moscow Department of economic policy and development Vladimir Yefimov, according to RNS.

The official noted that the implementation of these plans will depend on regulatory rules set at the Federal level.

«We are on the subject I think. But, of course, before implementing such technologies in the city, you need an understanding of how this will be resolved at the Federal level. The discussion is not yet completed. When will a clear understanding of what can and can not where you can [use] and where we can, we will, of course, for it to adapt,» he said.

According to Efimov, a prototype cryptocurrency can be considered as points in loyalty programs.

«This can be called pseudocreativity because these points you can exchange, respectively, on something else. When we talk about cryptocurrency, it is implied by its more widely circulated, and not narrowly focused. The prototype already exists – everyone has points, some loyalty cards. Just a question, where and how to use it,» he said.

We will remind, in August, the head of VNESHECONOMBANK Sergey Gorkov has admitted that the Moscow authorities could in the future to issue its own cryptocurrency — Moscowcoin. However, the service of the Department of Finance said that this is impossible. The reason is that issues money issue are the responsibility of the Federal government.


SEC Thailand can equate some tokens to securities

The Commission on securities and exchange Commission Thailand (SEC Thailand) have published a new statement on the ICO, which reported that some tokens can fall under the definition of securities. SEC Thailand also expressed concern that the sale of tokens used for fraudulent schemes involving unsuspecting investors:

“The ICO has gained popularity among tech startups as a convenient and timely method of access to financing. Over the past few months the ICO has grown exponentially and has moved beyond venture capital financing at an early stage. As a result, financial regulators, including the SEC of Thailand is concerned that in some cases the ICO may be deliberately used as a tool for fraud or Scam”.

The statement marked a more conciliatory position in relation to the ICO in comparison with other jurisdictions. Especially with China, which this month introduced a ban on such funding model. The position of the regulator of Thailand closer to the stated last month the Canadian securities administrators (CSA).

“SEC Thailand promotes access to Finance for companies, including technology start-UPS, and understands the potential of the ICO, as a response to the need for investment. In cases where ICO is the offering of the securities, the Issuer will need to comply with applicable regulatory requirements in the competence of the SEC of Thailand,” the statement reads.

Thai regulator will continue the search for a balance between support for digital innovation and protecting investors from fraud. Comments and suggestions from businesses on how to approach the ICO welcomed, said SEC of Thailand.

Earlier, the regulators of the USA, UK, Dubai and Russia warned investors about the risks of ICO.


Why ban China ICO is rather good?

The second day of the cryptocurrency market shows different reaction to ban Chinese regulators holding ICO. While startups are counting on the attraction of means in such a manner, cancel or transfer your placement, but event organizers canceled the conference, the editors interviewed several experts the impact of this step on the market ICO, will the market and what regulation to expect from States?

Denis Dovgopolyi, President of the GrowthUP Fund

I think it will have a positive impact on non-Chinese ICO. Chinese wallets have a huge potential and is now part of the money will go for more flow in non-Chinese ICO.

I did not see special problems in regulation. It’s a parallel universe, and so there will always be a jurisdiction where it will be possible to conduct such transactions legally. Not to mention the fact that many ICO are held outside the jurisdiction even without establishing a legal entity. Yes, and the first company project in whose interests is ICO. Here bows ICO <> the account of the company will be increasingly subject to, but with the growth of liquidity of the cryptocurrency, the value of this will fall. Bottomline: in the short term will hurt and confusion on how a long time interval, it will appear as a fluctuation. From my point of view, the number of Scam when ICO and ignoring the KYC/AML have a more serious systemic consequences for the industry.

Sasha Borovik, CFO at CLOUDEO

ICO should be regulated carefully and leaving room to experiment. China not being a democratic country, reacts as is able – hard. Prior to that, China has established its domestic Internet, limiting their access to the www, FB banned and restricted Google. These actions cut off access to the mainstream, but the service remained available for geeks. They are trying to do the same with crypto. But the Blockchain today is geeks. To limit their access to the blockchain and international ICO is almost impossible. Yes, China will be less than ICO and crowdfunding. To do marketing in the country foreigners will be difficult. Otherwise little that will change. The ICO will continue. Will appear innovative and responsible regulation and the blockchain will find a new introduction. No, this is a good and logical development for blockchain – nonsense will be slightly less, international regulators will try to find a more sensible approach, so as not to be like China.

Orestes Havryliak, partner at Axon Partners

China is a country of paradoxes. And on yesterday’s news about the “ban ICO” it would be nice to say in context.

In China, the cryptocurrency is seen as a commodity (since 2013, among others), and websites related to Bitcoin (for example, cryptocurrency exchanges) must be registered in the Telecommunications office (Telecommunications Bureau). Taxation is carried out in accordance with the standard for goods rules. This, incidentally, means that the sale of crypto-currencies may be subject to value added tax (Value-added tax).

Despite the fact that the state closely (to put it mildly) is watching his and other people’s citizens, the blockchain-industry in the country is actively developing from year to year. No Chinese SIM cards can not, to buy and sell bitcoin on crypto exchanges (at least to foreigners), but also to connect to WiFi it is impossible. Like it is obvious that cryptocurrency and distributed technology will not be developed. But no, the conference and other events on bitcoin and decentralized technology, is visited by thousands of people, and krausel with a good marketing in China and prior agreement with the local investment funds and/or individual investors destined for success.

In early 2017 adopted new rules aimed at detailed regulation of the activities of cryptocurrency exchanges. These regulatory actions, however, were aimed at protecting the rights of users of the exchange and again I say that trading in securities without a license in China is prohibited. At the same time, the regulator promised to «keep a gentle attitude to cryptocurrency exchanges». In addition, 2017 was marked by the cessation of activities of several mining farms, but again because of problems with the illegal use of electricity, not the so-called ban on mining.

And now the people’s Bank of China in cooperation with other ministries issued a joint order that already conducted by the ICA and issued tokens violated several Chinese laws. According to regulators, the token sale is illegal fundraising, illegal or financing, or pyramid (depending on the nature of token, as I understand it). Accordingly, the regulator made it mandatory for all token sales cease and all collected on the token shop money – back. Banks and other financial institutions are required to cease any transactions related to the token shop and also inform the regulator of all transactions that have already been committed.

Well, I am sure that this decision will be followed by changes in legislation. According to the text of the order will be separately regulated virtual currency and, separately, the tokenization. And I suspect that the regulation will not be so hard: the order (based on the context, which I described above) is more like a muscle-flexing than the desire to deprive China of cryptobytes.


Experts: interest of hackers to cryptocotylar and ICO will grow

According to experts of the Positive Technologies company, is expected to increase the interest of hackers to cryptocurrency wallets and ICO, where users run the risk to say goodbye to millions of dollars in a matter of minutes.

In a published report the experts of the company noted that during the attack site, where the ICO, hackers replace the address of crypto. In the result of investors ‘ funds go directly to the account of the scammers. Such attacks were ICO held startups Enigma Catalyst and CoinDash, reminded the experts of Positive Technologies. And if in the first case, it lost about $500 thousand in the second, it was already about $9 million.

In addition, specialists of the companies specializing in cybersecurity, drew attention to the possibility of yet another threat related to the conduct of the ICO:

“We cannot rule out the possibility of the emergence of a new type of cybercrime is creating a deliberately dishonest blockchain startups to justify the loss of funds to the activities of hackers.”

Reminded the authors of the report and dissemination of the hidden hash — attackers upload on the victims ‘ cars malware, creating botnets, hackers mining for cryptocurrency. The report also mentioned one of the most expensive cyber attacks when vulnerability in the client Ethereum attackers stole about $ 30 million.

“The issue of security of web resources has never been greater, as in the case with the blockchain projects and ICO when unauthorized access to the site management and content means the loss of millions of dollars in a few minutes. Along with the growth in the number of new ICO to the end of the year, and rising attacks on the blockchain platform,” said analyst Positive Technologies Olga Zinenko.

We will remind, earlier experts of company Group-IB have noticed that hackers turn their attention from banks to kriptonyte — here successful attack brings significantly more money.


Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies in 2018: key events industry

Cryptoseal, death spiral, bloodbath – what only epithets are not awarded the cryptocurrency market in 2018. Whatever it was, the outgoing year can be considered as one of the most disappointing in the entire 10-year history of this industry from the point of view of price correlations. How we survived it all?! Remember 2018 in our review of the major events of the year.

January — euphoria smoothly into the hangover

In the first month of the year kriptonyte came on euphoria, which in December 2017 raised bitcoin, and with it the rest of the market to historical highs. When the exchange rate of bitcoin is about $14 000 as of January 1 of the startups had grandiose plans, glamorous Lambo and Silvie girls was seen as something expected by default, and easy correction with $20,000 – no more than a slight misunderstanding.

Beginning in late 2017, the rally raised to unprecedented heights and many altcoins. Ethereum, starting the year at $755, in the first week of January rose above $1200, and the good old Litecoin at some point traded above $300. And doubtless fashionable chip was XRP is a digital coin from the Ripple in this period increased in price 13 times, again forcing the media to talk about the latter-day billionaires and the birth of a new cryptolect.

An additional impetus to the growth of the market gave the news that mark Zuckerberg is interested in studying cryptocurrency and encryption technologies for possible integration into Facebook is the world’s largest social network.

During the first week of the year the bitcoin has increased to a level above $17 000, but by mid-January, the price fell below $12,000, and 1 February and below $10,000. It was assumed that January’s drop market in the first place provoked by the news from China, where the authorities finally decided to deal with cryptocurrency industry by blocking access to foreign and local platforms for centralized trading. The ridged rules of kryptonyte and South Korea — the authorities have obliged all cryptocurrency traders until end of the month to convert anonymous electronic account in the nominal in accordance with the rules of AML/KYC legislation.

In addition, the end of the month was marked by the first high-profile case of hacking of exchanges and the theft of large sums of money: he suffered one of the largest shopping sites of Japan’s Coincheck, which as a result of the actions of the hackers lost 58 billion yen ($533 million) in the cryptocurrency NEM (XEM).

2018 — the year of the hacker attacks

2018 is rightly called years of hacker attacks on exchange for the first six months there have been 11 biggest hacks over the past five years, and the total amount of the stolen funds before the end of the year could exceed $1 billion This caused a lot of discussion on current industry safety standards.

In the case of Coincheck hackers have successfully stolen funds for the reason that the exchange kept the NEM coins in the so-called «hot wallet», that is, a digital repository connected to the Internet. A more advanced method of storing money – in offline «cold wallets».

It is noteworthy that the NEM Foundation even offered to spend hardwork and roll back the transaction back, thus making the stolen coins are useless, but eventually settled on the option with their marking.

The second greatest incident of the year was the theft of more than $170 million in cryptocurrency XRB (Nano / RaiBlocks) with the Italian stock exchange BitGrail in February. However, unlike Coincheck, which operated strangers here from the very beginning there were serious suspicions that the theft involved the head of the platform Francesco “The Bomber” Pirano. In the end, June 5, authorities arrested all cryptocurrency assets BitGrail, which will remain under the control of the judiciary before making a final decision in the bankruptcy of the exchange.

The other most notable incidents were associated with smaller amounts, but also led to the fact that users have lost tens of millions of dollars. So, on June 10 as a result of hacking South Korean Coinrail was stolen more than more than 40 billion won (about $of 37.28 million), the exchange has managed to keep 70% of the assets that have been moved to cold storage for the period the safety audit.

After 10 days, hacking has been another South Korean stock exchange, this time Bithumb. The attack hackers stole 35 billion won (about $31 million). And although Bithumb returned to the user of the tool, these events forced the authorities to initiate stricter regulation of cryptocurrency exchanges and accelerate the implementation of the regulatory framework for the industry.

On 9 July as a result of breaking the Israeli platform Bancor was stolen $23.5 million in ETH, NPXS and native tokens of the BNT site. Unauthorized withdrawal BNT 3.2 million ($10 million), the project team, however, was able to freeze the Bancor Protocol provides a fast response to potential threats to minimize damage to the community.

Finally, in September there was a second major theft of the year – this time has affected Japanese Zaif, which was taken away about $60 million. it is Noteworthy that the exchange took at least four days to only detect the fact of tampering and begin to take some action. It is known that from belonging Zaif hot wallet was stolen 5966 BTC (37 million USD), also the attackers withdrew large sums in BCH and MONA.

The result of hacking Zaif was the further tightening of regulation of the cryptocurrency industry in Japan, and the exchange in November was transferred to the management company Fisco investment, which assumed the obligation for compensation to affected customers.

The extent of the losses due to the actions of hackers say data specializing in cybersecurity firm CipherTrace – in her estimation, only for the first nine months of 2018 was stolen $927 million, which is almost 250% more than just 2017, when totality had stolen $266 million

February — the first serious drawdown market

The first real alarm bells for the market was made in early February, when just over a day, the price of bitcoin has fallen by almost $2500, dropping close to $6000. This drop triggered a new message from China about the intention of the authorities to take additional measures to block any domestic and international platforms related to virtual currency trading, or ICO. In fact, it was about creating another «Great Chinese firewall», this time aimed at the cryptocurrency industry as a whole.

At the end of the month, the bitcoin price returned to values above $10 000 again inspiring hope for further market growth. This was facilitated by positive statements of the head of the Commission on urgent exchange trade of the USA (CFTC) and Christopher Giancarlo and his colleagues from the Commission on securities and exchange Commission (SEC) Jay Clayton. So, Giancarlo noted the great potential of the blockchain for the development of the economic sector, adding that this innovative technology would not be possible without bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.

At the same time about the inevitability of regulation of the cryptocurrency industry at the international level and the need to resist the use of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies for money laundering and terrorism financing, said the head of the International monetary Fund (IMF) Christine Lagarde.

Still one of the most notable events of this month was estimated at $400 million deal to sell the popular cryptocurrency exchange Poloniex — it became the new owner of the company Circle.

Unjustified hopes to launch a bitcoin ETF

2018 will definitely be remembered for numerous legislative initiatives of regulators worldwide. Because of their size and market influence in the foreground, however, was already mentioned above, the American authorities in the face of SEC and CTFC.

The Commission on securities and stock exchanges, in particular, made an effort to see and to avoid in this year’s running is tied to a bitcoin exchange-traded Fund (ETF). According to popular belief, the bitcoin ETF will be attracted to the cryptocurrency market a big investment and it will contribute to the growth of its capitalization, as well as the mass adoption of the new assets.

However, hopes for the emergence of this tool, despite all efforts by stakeholders in the face of companies like Proshares, VanEck and SolidX and the Chicago Board options exchange (CBOE), never came true. According to the latest information, the consideration of a decision on the application for the launch of a bitcoin ETF from VanEck, and SolidX will last until February 27, 2019.

His reluctance to go to meet the community of traders SEC explains a number of factors, including the possibility of price manipulation and the desire to protect individual investors. Whatever it was, the actions of the Agency a few times this year directly influenced the price of bitcoins, and unfortunately not in a positive sense. A striking example is the July refusal to launch a bitcoin ETF, which for several years sought the brothers Winklevoss. After that, the price of bitcoin has first gone below $8000 and above it is no longer rising.

The price of bitcoin went below $8,000 in the backdrop of repeated failure of the SEC to launch a bitcoin ETF brethren Winklevosses

Rhetoric CTFC to address the industry at this time was softer, but it is also not yet helped in the launch of another highly anticipated look of the product — futures on Ethereum exchange CBOE. It was assumed that they will appear before the end of the year, but, as we now know, that never happened.

The spring market decline

Returning to the chronological events, spring 2018 market met with new hopes for the restoration of the bitcoin at the time was trading above $10 000 and the total capitalization of cryptocurrencies exceeded $450 billion.

To maintain this level, however, has failed: despite a brief rally to $11 750, March 8 bitcoin again went below $10 000, and that was the last time the first cryptocurrency was trading above the psychological mark.

It happened on the background of statements by the SEC that in the case of cryptocurrency exchanges are traded tokens that fall under the definition of securities, such platform must be registered as a national securities exchange, alternative trading system or brokers in accordance with Federal law. This coincided with an attempted hacking of the exchange Binance, and although she was unsuccessful, the total pressure on the price was too high.

In addition, it became known that over the past six months, the head of the Board of Trustees of the infamous bitcoin exchange Mt. Gox, Nobuaki Kobayashi with the purpose of indemnification of losses to creditors actively sold available reserves of bitcoin and Bitcoin to Cash. In total he sold about 35,000 BTC at an average price of $10 100.

Unlikely to have added to investors of optimism and the March news that the largest search engine Google is going to ban advertising of «cryptocurrency and associated content, including ICO, cryptocurrency exchanges, cryptocurrency wallets and shopping recommendations.» This decision took effect in June, but earlier on a similar measure went to Facebook and Instagram. Later, Google made concessions in this policy, is to allow the exchange of cryptocurrency certified companies from the US and Japan.

Additional negative market gave the news that since June, Japan introduces a ban on anonymous crypto-currencies like Monero, zcash for and Dash. Zcash for, by the way, by the time he received the support of the exchange’s brothers Winklevoss Gemini.

In early may, the market made another unsuccessful attempt to storm the height of $10,000. Did not give a positive response and large and surrounded by hype Consensus conference in new York, which consisted of numerous partnerships and has made high-profile announcements. By the summer bitcoin was trading at around $7400, at the same time Ethereum was worth about $580, XRP – $0,60, Litecoin — $120, total market capitalization fell to $320 billion.

The weighted average rate of BTC in the period from 1 January to 31 may 2018

Ethereum – the downfall from the pedestal

A year ago, in the midst of the euphoria on the cryptocurrency market many predicted Ethereum first place in the CoinMarketCap list and the end of an era of domination of bitcoin. Run more new ICO projects, which each time collecting more and more money, creating a high demand for coins, Ethereum, and the developers of the platform have predicted her new boundless opportunities, which will give the transition to the algorithm Proof-of-Stake.

But against the background of rapid market correction of even the most ardent maximalists and skeptics hardly expect Ethereum will demonstrate such a steep dive, ignoring all the support levels drawn by the authors of technical analysis.

An annual schedule of course ETH

Many things do become clear only in retrospect. Should we blame people for what they wanted quick money? It is a question of philosophical nature, which can be discussed for hours. The truth is that in 2017 the world was shocked by the cryptocurrency fever, which was sometimes struck by the common sense and push to rash acts in pursuit of new gold. It is obvious that many do not even read the white paper projects, but just distributed funds in equal parts or in any certain ratio between the different ICO, not really realizing or not paying attention to the difference between utility tokens and security tokens.

The first real warning signals sounded at the beginning of the year, when the Commission on securities and exchange Commission (SEC) sent out dozens of subpoenas involved in ICO-industry companies and experts, and its head called all tokens in securities.

Oil poured into the fire, the former head of the Commission on urgent exchange trade of the USA (CFTC), Gary Gensler, said in April that from the point of view of regulators even Ethereum can be regarded as securities. The story the media news has become one of the main subjects of discussion in the crypto community. The threat hung not only over tokens on top of Ethereum, but also over the coin, which sharply aggravated the situation.

However, in June, the Commission on securities and exchange Commission (SEC) announced that it plans to classify any Ethereum or bitcoin as securities. As said the head of corporate Finance Department William Hinman, these assets are more characteristic of the characteristics of the product that, apparently, sends Ethereum to the jurisdiction of the Commission on urgent exchange trade of the USA (CFTC).

After this statement was made President of the Chicago Board options exchange (CBOE) Chris Concannon, according to which such an approach the Commission finally addresses the barriers to the potential launch of Ethereum futures.

But one of the biggest challenges for quotes Ethereum is that ICO-projects began to sell huge quantities of previously collected coins ETH and out of Fiat. So, in July and the first half of August, they could sell up to 100,000 ETH, and in the second half and September — 300 000 ETH. Another study, published in August, showed that the projects that attracted funds to the ICO, held at the time 3 330 390 ETH.

On 13 August the weighted average rate of ETH has updated 9-a monthly minimum, having fallen below the psychological level of $300 and a few days later another «low blow» caused the CEO of cryptocurrency exchange BitMEX, Arthur Hayes – he not only called Ethereum «shitkino», but also predicted the falling prices of the coins below $100. On December 7 his prediction has come true.

Moreover, later with Ethereum happened the same flippening, about which so much was said in 2017. However, this is not the air bypassed by the capitalization of the bitcoin, and he conceded the second place in the ranking of CoinMarketCap, which now takes the coin XRP.

It is important that all these have befallen the Ethereum ecosystem troubles occurred against the background of attempts to come to consensus on hard forks Constantinople — an important step on the way to transition to the algorithm of the Proof-Of-Stake. After numerous delays, the developers only in early December, was able to determine the unit hard forks and the approximate date of the meeting – in the period from 14 to 18 January 2019.

All this miloradovo picture was trying to dilute acne Buterin, announced at the conference in Prague Devcon4 the transition of the ecosystem to the stage of Ethereum 2.0 and even spoke about it in a somewhat unusual role for himself, performing with several other participants a humorous song about the way Ethereum developer. Its chorus refers to the need BUIDL (to build, to create, by analogy with the word HODL in the bitcoin community) and that the blockchain is a new kind of world order, and developers should work and not to engage in ICO.

However, the messages about vulnerabilities in virtual machine Ethereum, and also that due to the sharp reduction in the price of the coin GPU mining ether is no longer profitable, quickly returned many members of the community to the ground.

Summer’s attempts at recovery

After three summer months of bitcoin, occasionally falling, then rising, lost in the price about $500, while the total market capitalization for the period fell from $350 billion to $225 billion.

The weighted average rate of BTC in the period from 1 June to 31 August 2018

At the end of the first week of June, the price of bitcoin fell significantly below $7000, so dropping to two-month lows. On a number of assumptions, which occurred the collapse of the market could be a late reaction to the requirement of the Commission on urgent exchange trade of the USA (CFTC), advanced to the Coinbase, Kraken, Bitstamp and itBit, to provide data on trading operations on these markets after the launch of futures on bitcoin. However, an analyst at Fundstrat Global Advisors Tom Lee was convinced that the cause of such behavior of the market was the expiration of bitcoin futures on the Chicago Board options exchange (CBOE). He Zhu earlier in may predicted that by the end of the year bitcoin will be worth at least $25 000.

At the same time, there has been activity in other projects. So, June 14, after the holders of the 15% token EOS voted for 21 of the manufacturer of the blocks, took full advantage of the core network EOS. However, this does not happen only with a certain delay, since the network launch was expected earlier but was accompanied by a freezing of transactions at the global level.

Leading cryptocurrency exchange in USA Coinbase, meanwhile, announced support for Ethereum Classic, also launched the Coinbase Index Fund — focused on accredited investors index Fund, and the new York itBit announced support for Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Ethereum (ETH), Litecoin (LTC) and Stellar Lumen (XLM). Simultaneously, the sixth licensed to do business in the state of new York (Regulations) received a Swiss-based provider of bitcoin wallet Xapo.

On 22 June the price of bitcoin is updated at least 2018, reaching $5938. Earlier, the financial services Agency of Japan (FSA) has ordered cryptocurrency of the company, bitFlyer, QUOINE, BTC Box, Bit Bank, Tech Bureau and Bit Point to improve AML/KYC. According to some experts, this then had a negative impact on the market.

In parallel with this, the Tokyo district court decided to begin the process of civil rehabilitation of bitcoin exchange Mt. Gox. The good news was that the head of the Board of Trustees of Mt. Gox, Nobuaki Kobayashi was not able to sell more bitcoins and creditors of the exchange had the opportunity to claim damages in BTC equivalent.

Since the end of June, bitcoin started to show signs of recovery, but at the same time happened in the first year a significant reduction Hasrat network. It was assumed that it was caused by a flood that destroyed a large mining farm in China’s Sichuan province. In the end, Hasrat network of bitcoin dropped 30%, from 43 million to 30 million TH/s.

The key point that could have changed the course of events has been the rapid growth of bitcoin in the second half of July, however, having confidently overcome a mark in $8000, to stay on these heights the first bitcoin failed, and by mid-August returned to $6000.

This was largely due to another failure of the SEC to launch a bitcoin ETF brethren Winklevosses and deferral of several other similar applications, however, the most worrying moment was the fact that the market hardly reacted to the really big news about the work on the creation of a cryptocurrency platform Bakkt.

Hardwork Bitcoin Cash

In August was noticeable, but as it turned out, played a huge role in subsequent events in the news. It was about the company’s plans nChain on release of the Bitcoin client for SV full node Bitcoin Cash (BCH). As it was reported, the client is developed on request pool Coingeek and is created according to the «original vision» Satoshi Nakamoto.

In fact, the company, which is notorious Craig Wright, made it clear that it intends to create its own version of Bitcoin Cash, but to what it will lead to consequences, when few people knew existed. Understanding that the confrontation between developers can lead to the formation of two separate chains after November 15 hard forks, began to fall in late August.

In September, it became clear that Craig Wright and affiliated with them pools are set very seriously – at some point, they significantly increased their mining power, effectively gaining control of the Bitcoin network Cash. However, to accept such a position, the representatives of the other camp, which included Roger Ver and head Bitmain Jihan Wu, was not going. So, having at its disposal a large number of devices for the mining company Bitmain shortly before hard forks announced the intention to use for the extraction of BCH 90,000 devices Antminer S9.

In fact, it was the beginning of «war of Harrachov», during which the two sides after a hard forks tried to establish control over the network. Significant resources were transferred from the BTC to mining BCH, while production of both cryptocurrencies, that for convenience some of the time called Bitcoin Bitcoin ABC and SV, in order to achieve the illusive goal was conducted at a loss.

However, less than two weeks after the hard forks of Bitcoin command SV announced the waiver to the original chain Bitcoin Cash, and presented its own road map. Exchange returned the Ticker BCH, which designated the original Cash Bitcoin chain, Bitcoin and SV now leads a life of its own and finishing the year in the top ten CoinMarketCap.

All of these events had a huge impact on the market — after a relatively flat September and October (if you can say regarding the price drop about $1000) since 15 November, the bitcoin price went down sharply, pulling behind them and all the other cryptocurrencies.

Cryptocurrency winter

The approach of a crisis, which culminated in the second half of November / first half of December, has said in the September report of the analytical company Diar. In particular, the question was that for the first six months of 2018, the revenue of the bitcoin miners to a record $4.7 billion, however, the growing competition and the increasing complexity of the calculations make the first cryptocurrency less profitable and put at a disadvantage smaller players.

In combination with falling prices of basic cryptocurrency industry was indeed in a difficult situation – their Hasrat began to noticeably decline, which also led to a reduction in the complexity of mining. So, in early December, the bitcoin has undergone the second largest decline of complexity in its history – more than 15%. Simultaneously, it was possible to observe a surge of attacks 51% on a range of currencies with a small hasraton

Then the mining pool F2pool founder Mao Shenyang WorldStar reported that over the past few weeks in China has been disconnected from 600 000 to 800 000 bitcoin miners. According to him, most of the miners who had stopped working, most likely used older devices, such as T9 Antminer from Bitmain or AvalonMiner 741 from Canaan Creative. The productive capacity of these devices is around 10 TH/s, and estimated F2pool, under prevailing situation, their work was unprofitable. It was also reported that amid a sharp fall in the price of bitcoin to sell mining hardware started in Russia.

The combination of all these factors, including the impact of hard forks of Bitcoin Cash, led to the most depressed segment of the year, which came in the first two weeks of December. Bitcoin price falling rapidly, several times in a short period of time updated yearly lows, together with the first crypto currency rushed down the rest of the market.

December 15 will be remembered as the day when bitcoin has found its bottom this year point – $3191,30 according to CoinMarketCap. On some exchanges, for example, on Bitstamp, at the same time, the price dropped to $3120, and the total capitalization of the market at some point almost fell below the psychological mark of $100 billion.

The weighted average rate of BTC in the period from 1 September to 29 December 2018

From this point the market showed a slight recovery, however, to overcome resistance above the $4200 bitcoin could not. As of December 29, the first cryptocurrency was trading around $4000.

2018 — year tablconv

This year can rightly be called the year tablconv – the so-called «stable» coin began to spawn in large numbers, taking a tight enough niche in the market.

The first notable step in this direction was the statement Circle the intention to produce its own analogue licenzirovanie dollar Tether made in the closing round of financing of $110 million, headed by the Chinese company Bitmain. The company took several months to implement its plans, and in September took place the official presentation of the new stablon under the name USD Coin (USDC).

The other most known «stable coins», which was launched this year, became the Standard Paxos, Gemini Dollar (GUSD) and TrueUSD. Also in the second half of the year was regularly received reports about running other tablconv tied to gold, the Japanese yen, the British pound and other valuable assets or even compliant with Sharia.

That increased popularity tablconv, as suggested by some analysts, could be one of the reasons for the collapse of the cryptocurrency market in 2018. According to this version, it is in a steady coins many traders have seen «safe haven» in periods of uncertainty.

According to the analytical resource Diar, compared to September, in November, the transaction volume of new tablconv USDC, TUSD, GUSD and PAX grew by 1032%. In value terms, the total volume of transactions «new» tablconv in November reached $2.3 billion, and within three months the figure was $5 billion While the most popular PAX, transaction volumes, which is approximately two times exceeded the same indicator of the USDC.

Note that at the end of November the combined market tablconv created the largest trading volume, the exchange Binance, and after a week on the support of the USDC, True USD, Paxos and Gemini USD Bitfinex announced.

Despite the rapid growth of new stable coin, a veteran of the market Tether, despite all the claims that the token USDT has no actual cash money, held a monopoly in this segment and finishing the year in the top ten CoinMarketCap, with a market capitalization of $1.9 billion. moreover, at the end, there is growing evidence that the statements of the Issuer of the token company Limited Tether about its security were valid, and she seems to have decided available past problems with the banking service, confirming the collaboration with Deltec Bank, a small financial institution with the Bahamas.

Bitmain and the uncertain prospects for IPO

26 Sep mining company Bitmain has applied for an initial public offering (IPO) on the Hong Kong stock exchange (HKEX). However, after three months, confident that it will be approved, still there. Some sources claim that the reason why HKEX is not in a hurry to give a “green light” applications is the instability of the market, but also there is the assumption that the whole thing is in a deplorable financial situation of the company. Despite the fact that in the September report BitMEX said that, overall, Bitmain is a risky but skillful game, only in the third quarter of 2018 its losses, not counting the losses in the war of Harrachov during hard forks of Bitcoin Cash, estimated at $740 million.

In addition, in October there was information that a number of potential investors Bitmain was misled by news about the participation of firms DST Global and GIC Private Ltd. in the financing of the company, as at the end of the year, the Chinese giant has confirmed rumors of a large-scale reduction of staff. Anyway, Bitmain remains one of the largest companies in the industry. Whether it will keep this status in 2019?

ShapeShift — the end of an era

In early September, a popular platform for instant cryptocurrency exchange ShapeShift announced the launch of a membership program for users. Industry veteran ShapeShift has always been known for its business model, does not require registration, however, the new policy meant that registration and the provision of personal data will become mandatory. News became one of the most discussed in the community, and many directly blame the company and its CEO Eric Vorhees in the «betrayal» of the ideals and philosophy of bitcoin and actual implementation procedures, AML/KYC.

Eric himself Vorhes said that this step the company was forced to go including because of the unclear position of the regulators with respect to cryptocurrency exchanges and exchange platforms. Also, according to him, the introduction of procedures for the identification of the users allowed to ShapeShift to pre-empt possible legal risks. This statement is quite remarkable, especially in light of information that in the last two years through ShapeShift were laundered $9 million, allegedly linked to criminal activities. Eric Vorhes these allegations, of course, denied, but at least that new policy platform marked the end of an era not can not agree.

2018 — the year of establishment of infrastructure for institutional investors

One of the most hot topic of the year was the pending arrival in cryptocurrency institutional investors. For the first time in the industry began to be established in a large number of infrastructure solutions to large traders with wall street and other financial centers of the world.

In addition to the already mentioned platform Bakkt, it is possible to highlight the upcoming launch in early 2019 trading platform Fidelity Digital Assets that will provide services for storage and trade with bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. In addition, this year, specialized services for institutional investors launched leading cryptocurrency company Coinbase, US, her example was followed by the British Blockchain, as the beginning of work on a special infrastructure was announced by the Bitfinex team. Additional plans to launch a variable-crypto currency exchange for institutional investors, said the exchange Huobi, the introduction of a new type of account aimed at this category of customers, said Poloniex, the commercial release of a new API, which will complement the existing free version, announced analytical service CryptoCompare, and the California company BitGo has received a work permit as focused on the institutional clients of the custodian of digital assets.

Although the end of the year at the largest banks on wall street, according to reports in the mainstream media, some diminished optimism regarding the prospects for products based on bitcoin, it can be expected that in 2019 in this direction can occur a breakthrough. And if you remember some of the forecasts that the institutionalization of the industry and work products will allow the cryptocurrency to overtake traditional assets, events can be really interesting.

10th anniversary white paper by Satoshi Nakamoto

Summing up the year, it is impossible not to recall the 10-year anniversary from the date of publication of the bitcoin white paper – a document which provides a description and principles of operation of the first ever decentralized payment system, was released 31 Oct 2008.

The identity of Satoshi Nakamoto and motives of creating bitcoins still remain a mystery, they are trying to solve and outside the community. What a way to make bitcoin in the next 10 years and how it will change the world? The answer to this question is nobody knows, and this is probably the main intrigue and beauty of cryptocurrency.

Andrew Asmakov


Fundstrat: holders of cryptocurrency in the United States will pay $25 billion in taxes

According to estimates research firm Fundstrat, cryptocurrency boom last year led to tax obligations in the amount of US $25 billion.

In the short term, this will continue the pressure on the cryptocurrency market, as the massive outflow of funds from cryptocurrency to dollars will continue until April 15 — deadline for filing taxes this year, said the company in the report.

“We believe that the pressure on the selling cryptocurrency has been strengthened by increasing sales taxes on capital gains this year,” said Tom Lee (Tom Lee), and co-founder of Fundstrat head of research.

However, the company believes that the prospects of bitcoin should improve after April 15. Whether confirmed its target of mid-year in the amount of $20 thousand for BTC and forecast at year end is $25 thousand.

According to Fundstrat, capitalization of crypto-currencies led by bitcoin in 2017 increased by $590 billion (in 2016 $11 billion), with about 30% of holders of scriptaction are in the USA. The amount of their tax obligations, the company calculated based on projected taxable profit of $92 billion and the tax rate on capital gains to 20%.

Fundstrat also noted that the cryptocurrency exchanges have recorded record profits in November and December and are expected to have huge tax liabilities that should increase the sale of cryptocurrency. The research firm added that many exchanges in 2017 have net income in excess of $1 billion and its working capital is to be stored in bitcoin and Ethereum. Of these cryptocurrency exchanges will have to sell to pay off their tax liabilities, said Fundstrat.

We will remind that earlier the co-founder of BK Capital Management and capturador Brian Kelly (Brian Kelly) called the end of the tax season in the United States one of the drivers of the future of bitcoin prices rebound.


Cryptocurrency can now mine on iPhone

Developer breaks Limneos Elias (Elias Limneos) introduced the MobileMiner app that allows you to use your iPhone for bitcoin mining, Ethereum, Litecoin, Monero and Electroneum in the background.

Owners of jailbroken devices can also install designed version of the app.

MobileMiner support ARM64 processor architecture and is suitable for the iPhone 7, iPhone 8 and iPhone X battery which can operate in the mode of mining up to 3-4 hours.

According to some estimates mining crypto-currencies using this application can bring about $150, while Limneos will receive 1% of the profits of the miners.

Recall that Opera Software released a beta version of the Opera browser 50, which has a built-in protection from the crypto currency miners.


TRON closed the transaction on purchase BitTorrent

Blockchain-TRON project has closed a deal to takeover BitTorrent. According to a statement on the official website of the service, he will now work from the new TRON office in San Francisco.

«We are pleased to announce that TRON has officially closed the purchase BitTorrent. BitTorrent has over 100 million active users worldwide, one of the most popular apps in Google Play and other products, including BitTorrent Play (iOS), uTorrent, Web, and desktop clients for Windows and Mac. This unit will provide reliable support to the global development and partnerships TRON, at the same time realizing its vision for the world’s largest decentralized ecosystem,» the statement reads.

The path to unification of TRON and BitTorrent was rather thorny and complex. This story was speculation, violated the agreement and the lawsuit filed by the founder of TRON Justin San vs BitTorrent, changed its name to Rainberry.

According to Western media, this Saga began with the fact that the San sent a letter of intent to acquire Rainberry. The letter also contained a condition that during the validity of this treatment Rainberry had no right to discuss other deals on uptake.

However, Rainberry has violated the condition that led to the filing of a lawsuit against the company for breach of agreement. On the same day, when he expired letters, San registered company called Rainberry Acquisition Inc.

In the end, Rainberry Acquisition Inc. and Rainberry Inc. filed an application for merger to the Secretary of State of the state of California, what was the most convincing evidence that the company successfully merged into one. However, before publishing the above mentioned statements about the deal, virtually nothing was known.

According to experts, sale BitTorrent is, undoubtedly, an important event for TRON and its plans to build a decentralized Internet.

Through this transaction TRON finally captured his most coveted goal – network peer-to-peer technology BitTorrent. Although this technology initially gained fame thanks to the ability to share media, it represents an important piece of the puzzle, the collection of which TRON is busy trying to build a fully decentralized Internet based P2P connections.

BitTorrent, in turn, improve their services by attaching to the network TRON and explore the possibilities for decentralized communication outside of illegal file sharing.


The reserve Bank of Zimbabwe has banned financial organizations any operations with cryptocurrencies

The reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) decreed that all financial institutions in the country to stop transactions with cryptocurrencies. A circular letter was sent to all banks on Friday, the 11th.

The resolution contains the clarification that such radical measures of the Central Bank of Zimbabwe is trying to protect users and maintain the security of the financial system of the state. For the avoidance of doubt, the Registrar of banking institutions RBZ Mataruka Norman (Norman Mataruka) the Ordinance said:

«All financial organizations, including commercial banks and providers of mobile payment services, you must ensure that they do not use, do not sell, do not hold and do not do exchanges and transfers of cryptocurrency.

It is also unacceptable to the provision of any services using digital tokens, such as: account opening and maintenance, registration, clearing retail payments and transfers, issuing loans and accepting collateral.»

Additionally, the RBZ gave the order to terminate any existing relationships with cryptocurrency exchanges for up to 60 days to return them money.

In a separate statement, Bank Governor of Zimbabwe John Mangudya (John Mangudya) has warned the public about the insecurity of cryptocurrency trading:

«Anyone who buys, sells, and carries out any other transaction with digital currency do so at your own risk and without protection of the Reserve Bank».

Recall, doubts about the necessity of legalizing the cryptocurrency in the country, the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe expressed at the end of November last year. Norman Mataruka very categorically stated that the RBZ will do all they can to prevent bitcoin on the financial markets of the country.