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Global Malware Campaign WannaCry is Affecting Bitcoin’s Price

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As CCN earlier reported, WannaCry has infected more than 36 000 computers. Users of affected machines are prompted with the following screen:

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The malware WannaCry automatically encrypts files on the computer and demands the user to send $300 in bitcoin to a particular bitcoin address.

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For the last weeks, we have seen a dramatic surge in cyptocurrency prices with bitcoin leading the way. The first thing I reacted to when I read other news articles about WannaCry was the press’ immediate “conclusion” that this is a targeted attack on multiple governments (even Russia is hit).

I do not believe that’s the case. I believe that the guys (and girls) behind this massive Windows-attack might be interested in one thing only, money (or rather bitcoins). I do not believe for one second that they have targeted specific companies nor countries. They have money on their mind.

Was the bitcoin price surge a part of the attack?

Then I started to wonder, what if these “hackers” are so sophisticated and powerful that they have been able to manipulate cryptocurrency prices? And then started the attack once they were satisfied with their gains? What you should consider is that bitcoin and ethereum are still small compared to other stocks and commodities; it’s much easier to manipulate cryptocurrencies than e.g. Gold.

I find it strange that the hackers have given users of the infected computers such a short timeframe to unlock the malware. There are two reasons I can think of:

  1. They want to create chaos and uncertainty for cryptocurrency holders
  2. They want to dump their coins fast

I cannot believe they want bitcoins sent to their addresses and expect “ordinary people” with no understanding of bitcoin to be able to buy and send them bitcoins within the respected timeframe. The attack seem to have started on May 12th (a Friday) and banks are closed during the weekend. It just doesn’t make any sense to me.

As you can see from the graph above, the Bitcoin price was negatively affected by the announcement of WannaCry. My guess is that there are some that have made a lot of money by shorting Bitcoin the last couple of days.

What will happen with the bitcoin price next?

I’m afraid that we have seen the highest high for bitcoin this year. I could be very wrong (and I hope I am), but something tells me these last couple of weeks have been “fishy”. There could be some very adverse effects for bitcoin and cryptocurrencies in general caused by the massive malware campaign WannaCry. Politicians and police authorities can put their combined effort into preventing malware attacks like WannaCry by implementing stronger regulations on cryptocurrencies (exchanges and withdrawals). In the worst cases, banks may be banned from accepting deposits or withdrawals from bitcoin exchanges. If they see that bitcoin can harm their economies, they will throw everything they got towards blocking and making bitcoin illegal.

Yes, I do know that cryptocurrencies will survive either way, but mass adoption might be much tougher to accomplish.

These are just my thoughts, I believe the following week(s) will give us a better idea what this major attack will do to cryptocurrencies in general.

If you got a lot of funds in bitcoin, ethereum or any other cryptocurrency, I would take my profits and wait with entering the market again until the dust settles. Be aware; I like to play it safe (and I could be wrong). At least secure some profits for now (ensure you won’t lose it all).

Important: Never invest (trade with) money you can't afford to comfortably lose. Always do your own research and due diligence before placing a trade. Read our Terms & Conditions here. Trade recommendations and analysis are written by our analysts which might have different opinions. Read my 6 Golden Steps to Financial Freedom here. Best regards, Jonas Borchgrevink.

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4.2 stars on average, based on 52 rated postsFounder of Hacked.com and CryptoCoinsNews




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9 Comments

9 Comments

  1. knightofone

    May 13, 2017 at 6:31 pm

    This isn’t the first ransomware, i don’t see why it would affect the crypto space this much this time

    • Jonas Borchgrevink

      May 13, 2017 at 6:34 pm

      Hello, It’s probably the largest to date. But yeah, you might be right. It might not affect the price more than it already has..

  2. eko6321

    May 13, 2017 at 6:53 pm

    I think weekdays we will know more better results but your article make a sense.

  3. dano5050

    May 13, 2017 at 9:09 pm

    Trying to impute this or that price movement to this or that event is so contrived. If the price of bitcoin had gone up you would have said that all the folks having to rescue their computers had put upward pressure on prices.

    And then “I’m afraid that we have seen the highest high for bitcoin this year”. Really? Based on what analysis?

    Come on. We’re actually paying to read this. Try harder.

    • Jonas Borchgrevink

      May 13, 2017 at 10:26 pm

      As I explained, these are my thoughts. I’ve been into this game since 2013, I’ve seen ups and downs. Let’s see what happens the coming months. Would you buy me a beer if I’m correct? 🙂

  4. jacobcanfield

    May 14, 2017 at 1:15 am

    What do you think of all the server issues that Poloniex and Kraken are having? Do you have any recommendations for where to move my funds to? I have been following your blog very closely and saw the trend patterns for Stellar and Ripple as well and it seems like it’s consolidating and following the pattern, but the lows only seem to happen with website crashes. Does it matter if the sell offs occur from a website crash or natural course of action according to your technical charting? If so, could you do another analysis in the next few days?

    Thanks!

  5. Gabriel

    May 14, 2017 at 5:00 am

    Interesting take. My first reaction was to see it as a risk that people would associate bitcoin with illegal activities and be put off. But then, malware and ransomware have been around for a long time now, and the problem is not really the medium of payment but rather poor computer security across the board.

    • Jonas Borchgrevink

      May 14, 2017 at 11:35 am

      Yes, you might be right! Let’s see what happens the coming week.

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Altcoins

Bitcoin, Ethereum Lead Cryptocurrency Market Lower as Trade Volumes Plunge to Six-Week Lows

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Cryptocurrencies continued lower on Sunday after a stalled recovery limited gains to the low single digits, as weak trading volumes kept prices locked in a downtrend.

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Crypto Market Price Update

Digital currency prices were down across the board Sunday, with bitcoin and Ethereum leading the declines.

Bitcoin bottomed at $7,243.90, its lowest since April 11. BTC values recovered at $7,348, having lost more than 2% over the past 24 hours. The world’s largest cryptocurrency has lost more than $17 billion in market cap compared with last week.

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Ether prices bottomed at $562.23 over the weekend, giving back more than $200 from its most recent high three weeks ago. Ethereum is down nearly 20% in value over the past seven days. It was last seen trading around $569.63.

Bitcoin cash dipped below $1,000 after climbing back above the psychological threshold on Friday. At last check, it was valued at $995.88.

Stellar Lumens was down more than 5% to $0.276.

The crypto market cap is down more than $10 billion over the past 24 hours with total coin values hovering north of $326 billion. The market bottomed at $320 billion on Thursday.

Trading volumes have declined sharply over the past five days, with the market turning over just $13.1 billion on Sunday. That was the lowest turnover in six weeks.

The Bullish Case for Bitcoin

The latest market drama is once again forcing investors to think long and hard about their existing crypto holdings. Though the altcoin universe offers plenty of stellar projects, the bullish case for bitcoin remains stronger than ever, especially at current price levels. That’s because a growing number of use cases and increased institutional adoption make BTC an attractive long-term hold.

Though some have speculated that institutionalizing bitcoin is responsible for its marked decline since December, wider adoption is a net positive for the digital currency. Institutions today are exploring ways to offer bitcoin to their clients and developing new custody platforms that are designed to make holdings more secure.

Another interesting tidbit: bitcoin’s fees on Saturday briefly fell below rival bitcoin cash. Data from fork.lol show that BTC’s transaction costs were  lower over a six-hour period, with the discount widening over a three-hour stretch.

By Sunday, the picture had reverted back to the norm with bitcoin transactions costing more than its rival.

Though it’s not entirely clear why bitcoin’s transaction costs declined so sharply on Saturday, the average tx fee for the world’s largest cryptocurrency is extremely erratic. The fee on bitcoin cash, on the other hand, is usually much more stable.

Disclaimer: The author owns bitcoin, Ethereum and other cryptocurrencies. He holds investment positions in the coins, but does not engage in short-term or day-trading.

Featured image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Important: Never invest (trade with) money you can't afford to comfortably lose. Always do your own research and due diligence before placing a trade. Read our Terms & Conditions here. Trade recommendations and analysis are written by our analysts which might have different opinions. Read my 6 Golden Steps to Financial Freedom here. Best regards, Jonas Borchgrevink.

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4.5 stars on average, based on 418 rated postsSam Bourgi is Chief Editor to Hacked.com, where he specializes in cryptocurrency, economics and the broader financial markets. Sam has nearly eight years of progressive experience as an analyst, writer and financial market commentator where he has contributed to the world's foremost newscasts.




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Blockchain

Justin Sun Plans To Buy BitTorrent

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Justin Sun, the CEO of TRON, is finalizing an agreement to buy BitTorrent, inc. Most people know BitTorrent as the creator of the popular torrenting client, uTorrent, which at its peak had over 100 million users.

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According to Torrentfreak.com, BitTorrent has been in a steady decline to some poor decisions and potentially illegal missteps by their management.

In an interview with BitTorrent founder Bram Cohen, the management was painted by Cohen as incompetent narcissists who had no business plan and no idea what they were doing besides chasing some nebulous idea of celebrity endorsement.

This can be seen in Cohen’s statement, “They were just incompetent fuckups. I mean they’re losers. Basically, Accel took their share in BitTorrent and pretty much just gave it away to these total strangers who they didn’t know. And not only gave away their stock but gave away control of the company.

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Human beings are a bunch of starfuckers, right? The United States has become this celebrity-obsessed culture, and everyone’s all about, oh, we’ll gain access. That’ll be great, and we’ll make money off of it, everybody thinks this.”

It is against this backdrop that Sun’s alleged acquisition is taking place. The TRON projects alleged goal is to “decentralize the web.” Owning one of the most recognizable brands aligned with these goals would be a major coup for the ambitious CEO.

This is due to the fact that the most likely use case of uTorrent by TRON would be to simply parlay its user base into usage of the TRON blockchain.

Since a huge part of TRON’s model relies on advanced content search for media files, simply making use of the uTorrent brand but integrating it with Tron’s decentralized search would instantly transform TRON into one of the most actively utilized blockchains on earth.

The information stems from the fact that BitTorrent changed their company name recently to Rainberry according to their chief product officer. “Rainberry Inc is the official name of the company; it was changed right around the start of 2017.” He stressed that it was a purely corporate decision and that none of the existing product brands would change.

Despite this blanket denial, it seems like the acquisition was proceeding swiftly, and was even overcoming some initial hurdles. BitTorrent had already tried to find a better acquisition offer during the first round of negotiations, to the point that Justin Sun took them to court in an attempt to stop them from negotiating with other buyers.

However, it seems that these initial roadblocks have been overcome, as a new company called Rainberry Acquisition, (BitTorrent recently changed their official company name to Rainberry) was formed and registered directly to Justin Sun. How Sun plans to integrate the platform with Tron is an open question, but it is likely to result in some interesting synergies.

Featured image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Important: Never invest (trade with) money you can't afford to comfortably lose. Always do your own research and due diligence before placing a trade. Read our Terms & Conditions here. Trade recommendations and analysis are written by our analysts which might have different opinions. Read my 6 Golden Steps to Financial Freedom here. Best regards, Jonas Borchgrevink.

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Analysis

Long-Term Cryptocurrency Analysis: Correction Deepens but Leaders Remain Stable

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As the major cryptocurrencies got hit hard this week, losing around 20% on average, the long-term picture in the segment got close to an entry point for investors. The overbought readings that developed during the late-April rally are now cleared and although the short-term trends are still clearly negative, we still expect the coins to resume the recovery. With that in mind, long-term investors could start accumulating the relatively stronger coins.

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On a negative note, even the leaders violated key support levels during this week’s selloff, but the secular long-term trends are not yet in danger. The prior leaders Ethereum, EOS, and IOTA are still in the center of attention, as we expect them to form a bottom soon. Bitcoin and the other relatively weak coins, like Litecoin, Monero, Dash, and NEO are still lagging the form a technical perspective, but they are also well above the support levels that would indicate an end of the secular bull market.

BTC/USD, Daily Chart Analysis

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Bitcoin is below the key $7650-$7800 support level and it remains the biggest drag on the market, despite a brief period of relative strength this week. The upper boundary of the base pattern that we identified in April is found near $6150, with a weaker zone around $6500, and with the short-term trend clearly being negative, the latter might be tested before a bottom forms. Further resistance is ahead at $8400, $8700, and between $9000 and $9200, and traders and investors still shouldn’t enter positions here.

ETH/USD, Daily Chart Analysis

Ethereum is testing the $555-$575 support zone after violating the $625-$645 range, with the declining short-term pattern being intact. A bottom near the $500 would still keep the recovery intact, but the correction low might already be in, and investors could already add to their holdings here. Further resistance zones are ahead between $735 and $780 and near $845, while support is found near $450.

(more…)

Important: Never invest (trade with) money you can't afford to comfortably lose. Always do your own research and due diligence before placing a trade. Read our Terms & Conditions here. Trade recommendations and analysis are written by our analysts which might have different opinions. Read my 6 Golden Steps to Financial Freedom here. Best regards, Jonas Borchgrevink.

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4.6 stars on average, based on 257 rated postsTrader and financial analyst, with 10 years of experience in the field. An expert in technical analysis and risk management, but also an avid practitioner of value investment and passive strategies, with a passion towards anything that is connected to the market.




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