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South Korean Exchange Suffers a Hack, Sending Crypto Markets Tumbling

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If you haven’t checked the cryptocurrency market in the past 24 hours, you may be in for a shock. Bitcoin has fallen the most that it has since May 23, as Bloomberg pointed out, and is currently hovering at $7,200, down 5%. The broader cryptocurrency market is in selloff mode too, with just about each of the top 100 coins trading in the red.

Source: CoinMarketCap

The culprit appears to be a security breach at South Korean cryptocurrency exchange Coinrail, which according to the exchange’s website occurred at dawn. Coinrail, which ranks at No. 94 for trading volume, has contacted local authorities and is currently picking up the pieces.

Coinrail pointed to “security intrusions” targeting a handful of altcoins, including NPXS, NPER and ATX digital currencies, all of which have since been frozen. The exchange has also directed about three-quarters of cryptocurrency funds to cold storage, which is an offline way of securing funds. An update on the Coinrail website said:

“Seventy-percent of your coin rail total coin/token reserves have been confirmed to be safely stored and moved to a cold wallet and are in storage,” according to a statement on Coinrail’s website.

Coinrail also provided an update on the trio of affected coins –

  •  NPXS and ATX: Frozen
  • NPER: Frozen “and additional to be issued”

All three coins are down sharply. Pundi X was down 9% at last check, ATX coin is down 27% and NPER is off 15%.

Three-percent of the Pundi X token supply was affected by the hack and was apparently sent to the IDEX exchange. Pundi X updated its Twitter followers that $NPXS transactions are halted at the direction of the Korean National Police Agency, adding they hope the Coinrail hack “can be resolved soon.”

 

Based on a tweet from NPER, they might have the hacker where they want them.

“While some NPER tokens appear to have been hacked from the exchange, the NPER team placed the hacker’s wallet address on a permanent “ Lock “ and made it impossible to move, according to NPER on Medium, urging its investors to remain “relaxed.”

Coinrail is ranked No. 94 among cryptocurrency exchanges for trading volume, with less than $3 million transacted over the most recent 24-hour period. While there’s never a good time for a security breach, the cryptocurrency markets were beginning to show some resilience, and despite some recent selling, bitcoin was within earshot of the $7,800 level. Now it will have to regain lost ground once again, serving as a reminder of just how fragile a market without formal regulation can be.

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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4.6 stars on average, based on 37 rated postsGerelyn has been covering ICOs and the cryptocurrency market since mid-2017. She's also reported on fintech more broadly in addition to asset management, having previously specialized in institutional investing. She owns some BTC and ETH.




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2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. sasikantsh

    June 10, 2018 at 8:12 pm

    What?! A tiny ass exchange somewhere in s korea with a puny $3 mil trade volume is causing this dip. Seems really unlikely.

  2. Monkeymantra

    June 10, 2018 at 10:28 pm

    You guys don’t seriously think this caused this dip do you??

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Why Investors Should Keep an Eye on DigiByte (DGB)

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DigiByte (DGB) has been around since early 2014 but like many altcoins only came to public and commercial prominence during the market ramp-up of 2017. In fact, between January of last year and now, DGB coins have grown over 9,400% in value – a figure that holds up even now in the midst of a market downturn.

Any coin price recorded during January’s spike shouldn’t be relied upon as an indicator of future performance, but the +50,000% growth recorded during the peak of January 7th is surely worthy of a mention.

DigiByte is self-described as the “Fastest, longest, most decentralized & secure UTXO blockchain in the world today.” Bold claims indeed, but do they stand up?

The Blockchain

DigiByte’s claims on being the longest blockchain might have something to do with the block times. DigiByte blocks come along every fifteen seconds, and for a blockchain that has been mined since 2014 this adds up to a very long chain of blocks – outnumbering the older but slower Bitcoin blockchain which produces blocks every ten minutes.

What about its claims on being the fastest? Well right now DigiByte can handle 560 transactions per second, which vastly outnumbers the seven and fifteen transactions per second handled by Bitcoin and Ethereum respectively. DigiByte intend for that number to rise, with a projected 280,000 tps targeted for 2035.

Placing future projections to one side, even the current tps rate of 560 is enough to grab attention. The speeds on the network are helped in no small part by the large number of node operators on the blockchain, with 70,000 at the time of writing.

Hence when DigiByte claim to be the most decentralized blockchain, they might once again have a point. Compare the DGB node count to Bitcoin’s 9,000 or Ethereum’s 16,000 and you see the difference.

As for its claims on being the most secure…

Multi-Algo

Miners of all stripes and colors can find something to do on DigiByte with five different mining algorithms employed in the production of DGB. ASIC miners are catered to with the presence of SHA256 and Scrypt mining; and Skein, Groestl and Qubit make up the CPU and GPU end of the spectrum.

Each of the five algorithms take a 20% share of the block rewards, with each algo having its difficulty adjusted automatically in relation to the strength of its respective mining pool. The splitting of the mining duties also helps secure the network against 51% attacks, since any attacker would have to control a majority of at least three of the algorithm groups.

The fifteen second block times mentioned above are achieved by having each of the five algorithms produce a block in constant succession. Thus, each of the five algorithms are cycled every minute and a half.

A Brief History

This all sounds well and good, and has been enough to carry DigiByte to within the top thirty ranked cryptocurrencies in the world, but this weren’t always so rosy for Jared Tate’s project.

In fact, when Tate launched DigiByte it was also intended to be used as a transactional currency within the gaming industry. If necessity is the mother of invention, then perhaps it was the hungry demands of a large-scale gaming industry which pushed DigiByte’s back-end evolution.

Ultimately the gaming focus failed. After finding integration on popular games such as Minecraft and League of Legends, the project collapsed in spring of 2017 due to ongoing technical issues and denial-of-service attacks.

A detailed history of DigiByte’s development can be viewed on their website, but the development team were instrumental in introducing the DigiShield technology which was eventually adopted by a host of other mainstream blockchains as a defence against mining attacks.

The blockchain has undergone four hardforks since its inception, with each introducing new updates in the form of the fairly self-describing Multi-Algo, Multi-Shield, DigiSpeed and the aforementioned DigiShield.

SegWit was also implemented on DigiByte in early 2017, via one of three softforks enacted on the blockchain thus far.

Notable Partners

Well, getting anywhere close to becoming bedfellows with the likes of Minecraft and League of Legends is no small feat, even if the association seems to have ended. But DigiByte also brushed shoulders with the likes of Microsoft when it was added to Azure back in 2016, although news from that front has been quieter in 2018.

In recent times DigiByte partnered up with Investa – a financial services provider which aims to incorporate DGB onto its ATM machines and debit cards.

Recent Performance

DigiByte is one of the few coins to have recorded higher lows and (almost) higher highs since January. Look at the chart below and see one of the few altcoins not to have completely disintegrated amid the bear market of the last eight months.

DigiByte sets itself up as a competitor to Bitcoin, not to other altcoins. It took a while for DGB to get going (possibly due to the purposeful lack of an ICO or whitepaper) but when it did it fired full-steam ahead almost immediately.

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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4.4 stars on average, based on 38 rated postsGreg Thomson is a full-time crypto writer and digital nomad. He eats ICOs for breakfast and bleeds altcoins. Wherever he lays his public key is his home.




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Why Investors Should Pay Attention to Golem

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Did you know most of us only use a fraction of our computers’ capacity? Thinking about it, you wouldn’t expect most of the tasks we do on a daily basis to take up much computing power. So what do you think happens to the rest of your capacity?

It sits idle, and nothing is done with it. Your computer is still on and consuming electricity and this power goes to waste. Based on this exact “problem” Golem has come up with a solution that ends up being a lot like AirBnb for your computer.

Golem has created a peer-to-peer system for sharing computing power across the network. The result is a flexible, scalable solution that aggregates idle resources and democratizes the payout to the millions of people on the network.

Golem’s Long Road to an ICO

It took 3 years, but Golem finally completed the sale of their GNT token in early April 2018. The platform is built on ETH and utilizes smart contracts to drastically bring down the cost of distributed computing. The sale was completed in under 20 minutes and raised 820,000 ETH ($340 million).

How it works is that suppliers have extra computing power and are willing to be paid GNT in exchange for their computers performing tasks for requesters.

The app is 100% secure and operates in the background, and you can also choose what fraction of your computing power to use, so there’s no worry about getting slowed down by its operation. Ideally, the only time you would notice it is when you earn some ETH for performing tasks for other users.

Golem’s Economics

The mechanics of the market are pretty simple. There is demand (requesters) and supply (providers). The supply is essential, because there are no central servers that are able to perform computations. Providers will come to the network with the goal of earning a few dollars a month in ETH, at virtually no cost to themselves.

On the demand side, you have users who buy GNT tokens in order to pay for providers to perform tasks for them. Requesters generally join the network because of its lower cost. They are able to set the maximum they will pay (their bid) and Golem distributes the tasks appropriately.

A final party to consider are the software developers who enjoy access to a distribution channel that helps them depoy and monetize new software. Golem has a store that enables this function and adds much more value to the network.

The obvious competitors to Golem are big cloud services like Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure. The fact is that these services are grossly overpriced because the companies have developed an oligopoly that allows them to collect high margins. This is crazy because computing power is not actually a scarce resource and this is the market inefficiency Golem aims to fix.

Golem’s Long Game

Golem is currently trading at a fraction of a dollar ($0.145) and is down from a high above $1.00. The same downturn has affected many companies in the blockchain space, and Golem has received extra flak for taking so long to release their product. At the same time, another way to look at this is as a major buying opportunity.

Most of this has to do not with ineptitude, but a complex framework (Ethereum) that isn’t perfectly designed for integration yet. However, in the long-run Golem still has huge potential. As more features are released (Clay Golem is next) and they scale to be able to help data centres, there is no limit to how far they can go. The size of the market has been proven by Amazon and Microsoft, and now it is up to Golem to see if they can get a piece of the pie.

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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Lisk Mainnet Launch Triggers 32% Surge with Bitcoin Trades Dominant

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The Lisk (LSK) team announced the imminent launch of their mainnet migration earlier today, as the coin price bounced to 32% gains in less than twelve hours. An official block date has been set for the migration, expected to arrive on August 29th.

Since the surge, Lisk’s momentum has begin to cool, and with nearly two weeks before the mainnet goes live, it will be interesting to see how long the bounce lasts.

Mainnet Triggers Lisk Surge

Late last night LSK was trading at a price of $2.73, before the surge took the coin to $3.62. For some context, the coin hadn’t found itself at a valuation in the $2.70 range since August of 2017.

After being saved from a yearly low the coin’s push evened out for a few hours but has just spiked again shortly before publication. The latest surge just saw 9.6% gains within the space of forty minutes, as the coin jumped from a valuation of $3.30 to $3.62, where it now stands.

The Lisk mainnet launch was announced earlier on Thursday, August 16th, with anticipation building in the days leading up. Looking back, the descent to the yearly low seems like a game of chicken, as investors waited for the opportune moment to ride the hype wave to the mainnet release.

Regardless, the team set out the date for the migration:

“#Lisk Core 1.0 is going to Mainnet! The migration will take place when we reach block height 6,901,027 at the end of round 68327. We expect this block height to arrive on Wednesday, August 29, no sooner than 11:00 AM CEST.”

The team reminded holders not to transact LSK within 24 hours of this time period, but conceded they couldn’t enforce such a rule:

“Please avoid making any transactions during the 24 hours prior to and after the migration. For exchanges, we also recommend not accepting withdrawals/deposits 24 hours prior to and after the migration as well. However, we cannot enforce this, as Lisk Network is fully decentralized and everyone in the community is free to post any transactions that they wish to at anytime.”

Bitcoin Dominance

BTC finds itself the prime mover in the majority of LSK’s market movements today, with over 90% of Lisk’s daily volume coming in the form of LSK/BTC trades.

Global Bitcoin dominance has been stuck on 53% for the last two days, after hitting 54.4% on August 14th. Despite fluctuations today which have seen BTC/USD valuations oscillate between daily peaks of $6,580 and daily lows of $6,270, Bitcoin is still in a stronger position relative to its digital competition, and finds itself represented on exchanges in proportion to its dominance.

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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4.4 stars on average, based on 38 rated postsGreg Thomson is a full-time crypto writer and digital nomad. He eats ICOs for breakfast and bleeds altcoins. Wherever he lays his public key is his home.




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