All about Blockchain, Cryptocurrency, Digital Transformation

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by Dr. AMK, Jan 7, 2018.

  1. hmscott

    hmscott Notebook Nobel Laureate

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    Feds ran a bitcoin-laundering sting for over a year
    Operation Dark Gold targeted dark-web drug dealers, offering cash in exchange for tainted cryptocurrency
    By Russell Brandom@russellbrandom Jun 27, 2018, 1:44pm EDT

    "More than 40 alleged dark-web drug dealers have been arrested as part of a sweeping federal effort described by the Department of Justice as “the first nationwide undercover operation targeting dark net vendors.” The core of the operation was an online money-laundering business seized by agents from Homeland Security Investigations and operated as a sting for over a year. By offering cash for bitcoin, HSI agents were able to identify specific drug dealers, ultimately tracing more than $20 million in drug-linked cryptocurrency transactions.

    “For the past year, undercover agents have been providing money-laundering services to these dark net vendors, specifically those involved in narcotics trafficking,” said HSI Special Agent in Charge Angel Melendez, in a press conference earlier today. Melendez led the operation from New York.

    The hijacked money-laundering service was offered across a number of different marketplaces, with agents claiming at least some presence on AlphaBay, Dream Market, Wall Street, and others. In the past, law enforcement efforts have focused on taking down marketplaces in full, most notably Silk Road, Silk Road 2.0, and AlphaBay. But Melendez says his office has shifted focus to the individual dealers, who often operate independent of any single site.

    “When we take down a dark net marketplace, these criminals will move to other marketplaces,” Melendez said. “So the focus of this operation was really the bad actors, the people utilizing the dark net to sell drugs.”

    So far, prosecutions have been launched across 19 states as a result of the operation, seizing more than $3.6 million in cash. The same raids seized large quantities of Schedule IV pharmaceuticals — including 100,000 tramadol pills and over 24 kilograms of Xanax — as is typical of trade on dark net markets. Agents also recovered more than 300 models of liquid synthetic opioids and roughly 100 grams of fentanyl. Further investigations are still ongoing.

    The success of the operation reflects the widespread adoption of anti-money-laundering practices among bitcoin wallet providers, which now typically require the same know-your-customer disclosures as a conventional bank. The largest bitcoin exchange to resist those measures, BTC-e, was shut down by an international law enforcement effort in July 2017, leaving drug vendors with few trusted options for converting drug-linked bitcoin wallets into hard cash.

    Melendez declined to give specifics on how the department had linked client wallets to drug transactions, saying simply, “there are tools and technologies that law enforcement uses to conduct blockchain analysis.” (Public records show that HSI’s parent agency spent more than $58,000 on Chainalysis tools in the months leading up to the investigation.)

    Still, Melendez emphasized that the open nature of the blockchain made it difficult to hide drug money. “The biggest selling point for the blockchain is that it’s transparent. Everybody can see it. And we can see it, too.”"
     
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  2. Dr. AMK

    Dr. AMK The Strategist

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    1.jpeg
     
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  3. hmscott

    hmscott Notebook Nobel Laureate

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    We must stand together and act (against #RBI) :- #JohnMcAfee
    https://www.reddit.com/r/Bitcoin/comments/8wdpyc/we_must_stand_together_and_act_against_rbi/
    [​IMG]

    JSkeezTheGreat 5 hours ago
    "Looks like somebody doesn't want to eat his own dick.."

    Mcaffee promise.JPG

    BITCOIN BLOCKADE
    India’s top court refuses to lift ban on cryptocurrency exchanges

    https://qz.com/1319985/rbi-ban-on-indias-cryptocurrency-exchanges-will-remain-top-court-rules/

    "India’s supreme court has refused to grant any interim relief to cryptocurrency exchanges against the Reserve Bank of India’s (RBI) crackdown on them.

    On April 05, the RBI had directed all banks to wind up within three months any existing banking relationships with virtual currency exchanges and traders. The ban kicks in from July 06.
    Jolted by the central bank’s diktat, a number of cryptocurrency exchanges had dragged the central bank to the supreme court in April. In May, the court had set the next date for the hearing of the case on July 20, two weeks after the ban would come into force. But the Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI), which counts bitcoin exchanges as its members, subsequently approached the court for an early hearing, which took place today (July 03).

    “This a win for the RBI and a big blow to virtual currency exchanges and traders. In our earlier request to the RBI as well, we had asked it to extend the deadline by a month after the July 20 hearing,” said Rashmi Deshpande, associate partner at Khaitan & Co, a law firm representing Kali Digital Eco-Systems, an Indian exchange planning to begin operations later this year.

    “However, now that the ban will continue, the banking route for the exchanges and its users will be completely choked,” Deshpande added.

    In the previous hearing on May 17, the apex court had asked these exchanges to submit their representation against the central bank. The firms had engaged with the RBI during the last week of May and early June.

    “We had submitted a detailed presentation that could have given RBI a clearer picture on what is blockchain, how the exchanges work, etc. But we hadn’t heard back from them yet,” said Nischal Shetty, founder and CEO of WazirX, another Indian cryptocurrency exchange that has challenged the ban. “Today, the supreme court has also directed the RBI to respond to those representations made by the firms in the next seven days.”

    Despite the court upholding the ban, the exchanges are hopeful. The Narendra Modi government is in the final stages of finalising the draft regulation on bitcoin and other currencies, according to a senior government official.

    “We have prepared a draft (on virtual currencies) that entails what parts of this businesses should be banned and what should be preserved. This should be discussed by the first week of July and we should wrap this up within in the first fortnight of July,” Subhash Chandra Garg, secretary in the department of economic affairs, who is heading a committee on cryptocurrency regulation, told television news channel ET Now last month.
    Now, all eyes are on the government and the next supreme court hearing on July 20."

    And, for those of you that want to keep informed:

    Will McAfee eat his own dick ?
    A simple website to track how McAfee's $500k $1M/Bitcoin in 3 years bet is going, 909 days left, and counting...
    https://diegorod.github.io/WillMcAfeeEatHisOwnDick/

    "Yes!
    $6508.37
    Bitcoin's current price index is
    -47.53%
    below McAfee's bet's price target.

    The price needs to increase to $12403.05 to be on target for $1M / Bitcoin by the three year deadline ending in 909 days."
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2018
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  4. hmscott

    hmscott Notebook Nobel Laureate

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    Tom Lee: I want to be clear, bitcoin is going to $25,000 by year end
    CNBC Television
    Published on Jul 5, 2018
    Bitcoin bull Tom Lee, Fundstrat, still believes the cryptocurrency will hit $25K by the end of this year. With CNBC's Melissa Lee and the Fast Money traders, Pete Najarian, Steve Grasso, Karen Finerman and Tim Seymour.
     
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  5. hmscott

    hmscott Notebook Nobel Laureate

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    Japanese cryptominer slapped with suspended sentence
    Said to have netted only £34...

    By John Leyden 6 Jul 2018 at 15:54
    https://www.theregister.co.uk/2018/07/06/coinhive_conviction_japan/


    "...
    "This is the first criminal case of cryptojacking in the world that I'm aware of," Troy Mursch, a security researcher active in tracking cryptojacking abuse, told El Reg. "Tracking down perpetrators can be difficult as Coinhive doesn't require any user identification verification. After the mined Monero is paid out to a wallet, it's basically untraceable beyond that."

    Adware, cracked games and pirated software have all been used by cybercriminals to secretly infect PCs with crypto-mining malware. Even more commonly, hackers plant code on compromised web pages so that the PCs of visiting surfers are press-ganged into mining, a practice most associated with the growing problem of cryptojacking.

    Japanese authorities last month arrested 16 cryptojacking suspects as part of a local clampdown, according to reports.

    Prosecutors reckon the 16 suspects hacked sites and inserted the Coinhive library into their code. The biggest earner among the 16 suspects allegedly made about 120,000 Japanese yen (£819, $1,085)."
     
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  6. Dr. AMK

    Dr. AMK The Strategist

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  7. Dr. AMK

    Dr. AMK The Strategist

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  8. Dr. AMK

    Dr. AMK The Strategist

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  9. hmscott

    hmscott Notebook Nobel Laureate

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    Blockchain Phone? :D:rolleyes:

    jonathan.huyghe
    Posted on Jul 11, 2018 | 3:28 PM
    "Banks don’t need blockchain for instant wire transfers, and so far they’ve done at most "proof of concept" projects and concluded in most cases that "yes, it works, but it’s not better than what we currently have and it probably won’t scale".

    For international payments, Transferwise is already doing low-fee, fast international transfers, without needing to use a blockchain.

    Estonia’s KSI ‘blockchain’ has existed since 2007, 2 years before bitcoin and before anyone even knew the word "blockchain". It’s been cynically rebranded and shares only a few characteristics with the actual decentralized blockchains like Ethereum.

    Humanitarian efforts too use permissioned blockchains which are basically just slow databases, and offer nothing new that didn’t exist before.

    There’s nothing stopping anyone from tracking the provenance of diamonds now, and in fact it’s been done for years.

    Even so, a blockchain doesn’t make this process any more trusted, since you’re still relying on people entering the right information in the blockchain, and no physical tampering happening at any step of the way.

    In short, there is no practical use case for blockchain that can’t be done with existing database and cryptography solutions. The only useful thing about it is that it makes boring back-end optimisations sound sexy and they might actually get done."

    The company behind this has a long reputation of stunts and events to raise money, $100M's, this all just seems like another stunt using all the possible buzzwords in geek speak to draw in more suckers. Read the article and the comments for fun.
    mashoq
    Posted on Jul 11, 2018 | 9:23 AM
    "You mentioned Messi twice but didn’t elaborate on how it
    "carries world football superstar Lionel Messi’s stamp of approval"
    Please explain"

    Stone Cold Dan Quinn
    Posted on Jul 11, 2018 | 9:43 AM
    "They paid him to say "sure" when someone asks if he approves/sponsors the phone."

    Vlad Savov Senior Vlad
    Posted on Jul 11, 2018 | 10:15 AM
    "This is correct."

    jdmp10
    Posted on Jul 11, 2018 | 12:17 PM
    "Sad when stars at Messi’s level are essentially advertisement billboards up for sale to the highest bidder with no integrity or moral compass to speak of, just a means of making the most money possible."

    R.S.D.
    Posted on Jul 11, 2018 | 8:47 PM
    ""When I’m cheating the Spanish government out of taxes, there is no better, more secure phone than the Finney"
    Es bueno?}

    Sir Terry
    Posted on Jul 11, 2018 | 9:39 AM
    "Soccer stars as security experts - Gooooooooaaaal!"

    Vlad Savov Senior Vlad
    Posted on Jul 11, 2018 | 10:17 AM
    "Oh, he posted something delightfully tragicomic on FB when his cheque cleared:

    "I am usually busy trying to decentralize defences and after digging deeper into Blockchain and decentralized systems, I’m excited to join SIRIN LABS as an ambassador to make blockchain more friendly with their upcoming operating system for smartphones.""
     
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  10. hmscott

    hmscott Notebook Nobel Laureate

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    "HTC isn’t gone just yet. Granted, it’s closer than it’s ever been before, with a headcount of fewer than 5,000 employees worldwide — that’s down from 19,000 in 2013. "

    Such a desperate move, it's sad to see HTC stoop to adding "Blockchain" to it's product name just to rouse up interest in their failing phone marketing...

    And, their headline use of "Blockchain" is "CrytoKitties", except it's also offered for everyone, included on HTC's U12+, so where's the uniqueness of "Blockchain" in the "Blockchain" phone??

    "What’s the big deal?
    CryptoKitties is one of the world’s first games to be built on blockchain technology—the same breakthrough that makes things like Bitcoin and Ethereum possible. Bitcoin and ether are cryptocurrencies but CryptoKitties are cryptocollectibles. You can buy, sell, or trade your CryptoKitty like it was a traditional collectible, secure in the knowledge that blockchain will track ownership securely."
    https://www.cryptokitties.co/

    Hmm, you know, as Objet d'art stored in blockchain, in the long run the "CryptoKitties" could end up being worth more than any "cryptocurrency" :D
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2018
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