tungfa

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  1. http://uk.businessinsider.com/cryptocurrency-market-coin-trends-cap-value-2017-9?r=US&IR=T Rise of cryptocurrency We live in a dynamic business world, which is constantly evolving with newer innovations and technologies disrupting the traditional methodologies of living our day-to-day lives. When the world becomes comfortable with one technology, a newer and better technology often comes to play, breaking the routine and bringing about drastic changes. Be it drones for commercial deliveries, voice paymentsfor businesses, or the use of cryptocurrencies for our daily transactions, ground-breaking innovations are paving the way for the rapidly changing 21st century. Invention converts into an innovation when it couples with mass commercialization and adoption. Cryptocurrency is the result of an invention, which is now poised to become the next big innovation in the fintech industry. Cryptocurrency refers to any digital currency that employs principles of cryptography (communication that is secure from view of third parties) to ensure security, privacy, and anonymity. All types of cryptocurrencies are decentralized -- they operate independently and are not coined or regulated by a single central authority. Consequently, the value of a cryptocurrency is not set by anyone other than market participants, who engage in the process of buying and selling on an exchange platform. Cryptocurrencies are often referred to as electronic or digital currencies as they all share the same inherent qualities of encryption. In this article by Business Insider's premium research service, BI Intelligence has explored the megatrend of the cryptocurrencies, their rise, and the future of the financial phenomenon. Cryptocurrency market trends "The Future Currency of International Business," "Next-Generation Gold," "A Permission-less Innovation," "The era of a cashless society," and "A Carry-less Movement." Global cryptocurrency enthusiasts, users, and promoters have given different names and titles to cryptocurrency and its era. The nomenclature given to the digital currency by its promoters depends on their sentiment towards this groundbreaking financial innovation. Over the past few years, cryptocurrency has triggered interest regarding ‘alternative money’ among masses and has grown exponentially.Bitcoin is the most popular and the most traded cryptocurrency in the world. It is the world’s first decentralized, peer-to-peer digital currency, which has gained mixed reactions over time. Advocates for Bitcoin consider it as a superior payment mechanism, one that operates outside the control of governments, is global in scope, is more secure than the traditional payments systems, and which brings about a much-needed revolution in the almost ‘static and stagnant’ global financial industry in terms of money. At the same time, the growth of this unregulated payment mechanism has led to heightened concerns about it’s usage, legality, accountability, and control. FILE PHOTO: A Bitcoin (virtual currency) coin is seen in an illustration picture taken at La Maison du Bitcoin in ParisThomson Reuters Cryptocurrencies & their market caps Over the years since Bitcoin’s birth, hundreds of digital ‘coins’ have taken to the crypto marketplace, reaching up to a mark of almost 900 cryptocurrenciesavailable on the web's digital currency bazaar. By market capitalization, Bitcoin is currently the largest blockchain network, followed by Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash, Ripple and Litecoin. The top 10 cryptocurrencies as of this writing according to Crypto Currency Chart are: Bitcoin (BTC): Currently trading at more than $4,000, the market capitalization of the world’s first decentralized cryptocurrency is more than $67 billion. Ethereum (ETH): Ethereum is a decentralized platform that runs smart contracts: applications that run exactly as programmed without any possibility of downtime, censorship, fraud or third party interference. Currently trading at nearly $300, market capitalization of Ethereum is almost at $28 billion USD. Bitcoin Cash (BCH2): Since its launch this August, the infant cryptocurrency had at one point doubled in value from $300 to a price touching $600, and investors are now wondering if its popularity poses a serious threat to the Bitcoin throne. Currently trading at almost $475, market capitalization of Bitcoin Cash is almost at $8 billion. Bitcoin Cash is essentially a clone of the existing Bitcoin blockchain with one important feature of additional block size capacity. Ripple (XRP): This cryptocurrency claims to be the world’s only enterprise blockchain solution for global payments, connecting banks, payment providers, digital asset exchanges and corporates via RippleNet to provide a frictionless experience to send money globally. Though Ripple is trading at just $0.19, its market capitalization is at more than $9 billion. Litecoin (LTC): Litecoin is an open-source, peer-to-peer Internet currency that enables instant, near-zero cost payments to anyone in the world. Currently trading at more than $55, market capitalization of Litecoin is almost at $3 billion. Dash (DASH): Although having similar features to Bitcoin, the only additional characteristics that set Dash apart from Bitcoin are instant transactions (InstantSend), private transactions (PrivateSend) and decentralized governance (DGBB). Dash's decentralized governance and budgeting system makes it the first decentralized autonomous organization. Currently trading at more than $330, market capitalization of Dash is at more than $2.5 billion. NEM (XEM): NEM or the New Economy Movement is the world's first Smart Asset blockchain. Though trading at a mere $0.24, market capitalization of NEM is more than $2.1 billion. IOTA (IOT): IOTA calls itself the ‘backbone of IoT’ with its core invention of the ‘blockless Tangle’, which is a revolutionary new blockless distributed ledger. Though the IOTA is trading at a mere $0.60, market capitalization of IOTA is more than $1.6 billion. Monero (XMR): Monero is an open-source, privacy-oriented digital currency that is secure, private, and untraceable. Currently trading at more than $100, market capitalization of Monero is almost $1.5 billion. OmiseGo (OMG) : OmiseGo is a public Ethereum-based tech for use in mainstream digital wallets. Scheduled for launch in the fourth quarter of 2017, OmiseGo is designed to enable real-time, peer-to-peer value exchange and payment. Currently trading at more than $10, market capitalization of OmiseGo is more than $1 billion. For live charting, Cryptowatch is a cryptocurrency live charting and trading platform owned by Kraken, one of the leading online Bitcoin exchanges in the world. Future of cryptocurrency and blockchain technology Cryptocurrency is a booming segment of the global financial industry despite the cynicism and the negativity surrounding it. As an unusual and mysterious unregulated payment method, it has managed to penetrate the most unusual locales of our existing (online and offline) transactional world. Due to the evolving and yet unexplored nature of cryptocurrencies, investors and governments worry about the illegal undertakings and security concernsconnected with the usage of unregulated cryptocurrencies. Apart from populaces worrying about the vulnerability of the currency to susceptible fraud and theft, governments and central banks globally worry about loss of their control over money supply and regulation if digital currency were to become the norm. It would directly imply shifting of power from the hands of the government to the common man. Apart from the apprehensions, there are many factors that have made cryptocurrencies encroach on our daily lives and become a part of our new world economy in the 21st century. Blockchain technology is considered as the future of the sharing economy as the technology can help energize and unlock the sharing economy by making it cheaper to create and operate an online platform. Another potential outcome of the mass adoption of alternate payment systems, like Bitcoin, is to provide companies with the impetus to improve their services. Fees charged for transactions, excessive time involved in transferring funds internationally and clearing transactions etc. are some of the usual nuisances that come along with using traditional payment methods such as banks, credit and debit cards, and checks. Cryptocurrencies have the power to eliminate all of the above and many more associated annoyances. Power to the common man: Bitcoin is usually labeled as a digital currency, which is ‘BY the people, FOR the people, OF the people’. The decentralized nature along with anonymity and freedom, coupled with little to no fees is what attracts most loyalists. Cryptocurrencies are here to stay and grow through steady mass adoption. There are various other ‘possibilities’ of cryptocurrencies in alternating our financial world as we know it, and for a future with endless opportunities. A potential use of bitcoin could be in the world of the IoT (Internet of Things). IoT is the interconnection of unique computing devices within objects that might not otherwise have ever been connected to the Internet. Bitcoins could make SIM cards and paper passports obsolete. Cryptocurrencies have the potential of saving and storing such high-end sensitive data, all with maximized security that they have been posed to make ‘digital passports’ and digital IDs a thing of our very near future. Forecasts on the future of cryptocurrency ranges from outright failure as a temporary craze to filling a role of a new global currency. The answer probably lies somewhere between these extremes, and will depend on the legal and regulatory configuration that ends up defining the currency’s use in each country. Get the latest Bitcoin price here. More to Learn The cryptocurrency mega-trend is here to stay and grow. Seeing their adoption rates and widespread commercial interest, almost every industry and field will be affected by the presence and usage of cryptocurrencies in one way or the other. That's why BI Intelligence has put together two detailed reports on the blockchain: The Blockchain in the IoT Report and The Blockchain in Banking Report.
  2. https://www.coindesk.com/arizona-smart-contract-clarity-winning-startups/ Only in Arizona: How Smart Contract Clarity Is Winning Over Startups Sep 19, 2017 at 11:40 UTC by Aaron Stanley What happens when someone breaches a contract? If you've gone through all the rigmarole of developing a paper contract, the legal ramifications are clear. But paper contracts are not only inefficient but also prone to fraud, which is why a group of startups and developers are pushing digital "smart contract" systems tied to immutable blockchains. But what if someone breaches their smart contract? The answer, in most places throughout the world, is less clear. That is, unless you're in Arizona. Since passing a law in March that enshrined the validity and enforceability of digital signatures recorded on a blockchain, the Grand Canyon State has quietly emerged as a choice location for blockchain companies that develop applications based on the self-executing pieces of code. inRead invented by Teads For Sweetbridge, a Phoenix-based outfit building a blockchain supply chain finance platform, the law has afforded the company sufficient legal clarity and confidence to begin rolling out operations more aggressively. Caroline Lynch, Sweetbridge's public policy and legislative advisor, explained that the state's decision to elevate smart contracts to the same legal grounding as traditional contracts has been imperative to the company's growth. Lynch told CoinDesk: "It takes away that one potential area for dispute, if for no other reason than a party to a contract cannot argue that because it was executed through a digital ledger it lacks validity." Arizona's legal safe haven Stepping back, the law in March actually amended the Arizona Electronic Transactions Act (which already stated that records or signatures cannot be denied legal effect and enforceability based on the fact they're in electronic format) to include digital signatures recorded on a blockchain. It now states: "A signature that is secured through blockchain technology is considered to be in electronic form and to be an electronic signature ... A record or contract that is secured through blockchain technology is considered to be in an electronic form and to be an electronic record." As such, in the event of a dispute or breach of a smart contract, parties have full ability to seek legal recourse in the state's court system. And with this, business representatives from the state have wasted little time in using the newfound language as a means to lure companies that are flirting with smart contract applications in sectors such as finance, real estate, law, public records and insurance. According to Darryn Jones, director of business development at the Greater Phoenix Economic Council, because the law is technology neutral, it legitimizes smart contracts regardless of the blockchain on which they choose to build. Jones went on: "From a value proposition standpoint, as we go and recruit companies that are utilizing or developing smart contract software, we can say that this gives them a safe haven for operating in Arizona." The business of contracts For blockchain-based supply chain startups, this small change makes a big difference. Supply chains, at their core, are distribution channels involving transactions among numerous partners and entities, all with contracts that lay out how each is supposed to act. If those contracts cannot be enforced or accepted in a court of law, the entire viability of the relationship is put in doubt. "Eventually, the stuff that you implement and any smart contract code that you put in place to direct business processes or transactions has to stand on legal footing. It has to be enforceable. And if it's not, it's going to fall apart in a second," said Todd Taylor, chief executive of Aperio, another Phoenix-based blockchain supply chain startup, and a professor at Arizona State University. While states such as Vermont and Nevada have passed laws this year aimed to bring additional clarity to blockchain firms, Arizona remains the only state so far to have cemented the enforceability of smart contracts. Sweetbridge's Lynch, who previously served as chief counsel to the House Judiciary Committee in Washington, D.C., agreed with Taylor, saying the stability is of utmost importance as her company looks to build out its platform and carve its niche in the blockchain world. And Jones continued: "They wouldn't be able to do this in Arizona if we didn’t have this law. These companies would not be able to utilize their coins and their service as a smart contract platform if this enabling legislation was not passed." An unusually friendly climate But supply chain companies aren't the only ones seeing benefit in setting up shop in Arizona. For instance, Dash Core Team, which oversees the development of dash – the sixth-largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization – has established a hub in an incubator run by Arizona State University. Ryan Taylor, CEO of Dash Core Team, said his company has developed several successful partnerships with Phoenix-area businesses by way of city and state government officials making introductions. For example, Arizona State University launched a blockchain research lab in partnership with Dash, and is working on a blockchain certificate program for interested students. "They're connecting the dots actively; they're making this a priority," he said. "They're going to find ways to help the industry flourish, and that's huge, because I'd say, in most geographies, the politicians don't feel that same way and they don't even understand the technology." Observers say the law's passage is indicative of a surprising, if not rare, willingness among the state's political elites to overlook certain negative stereotypes in favor of how blockchain technology can be leveraged for economic development purposes. "The bill that was passed tees us up in a way that it's the start of many good things that we expect to come from our legislative bodies," said Rhonda Milligan, co-founder of Sweetbridge. Earlier this month, Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich announced his intent to establish the country's first regulatory sandbox for financial technology, a category many blockchain startups fall under. Dash's Taylor concluded: "I think that business groups and government officials could learn a lot from looking at what Arizona is doing to ensure that they have a seat at the table when it comes to this new emerging field."
  3. The Empire Strikes Back with a Coordinated War on Crypto https://hackernoon.com/the-empire-strikes-back-with-a-coordinated-war-on-crypto-bdd84fd2f854 SAN BENEDETTO DEL TRONTO, ITALY. MAY 16, 2015. Portrait of Darth Vader costume replica with grab hand and his sword. Care of ShutterStock for editorial use. On Sept 1 2017, Bitcoin roared to a new all-time high, touching the $5000 mark for the first time in history. And then the bottom fell out. While Twitterverse crypto enthusiasts called the sudden drop a natural correction, it quickly became clear there was nothing natural about it. Over the course of two weeks, Bitcoin and every other crypto faced a sustained assault of relentless negative press designed to crash the price, spread fear and destroy the trust in decentralized money. And it wasn’t random at all. It was a coordinated attack on crypto. To understand why you just have to know a little about the history of power in the world. The Empire Strikes Back David Smooke, the king of Hackernoon, called decentralized cryptocurrency “this decade’s iconic battle of government vs. business.” But it’s more than that. It’s not a battle between business and government. It’s a battle between the centralized empires of the world and a decentralized rebel alliance of every day people, an eternal battle. And it’s not just a battle. It’s a war. It’s been raging since humans first crawled out of the primordial swamp. It’s a battle of freedom versus control, power to the people versus the power of a select group of elites who’ve kept their jackboot on the face of humanity for thousands of years. Each generation must face the fight anew. Like a pendulum that swings back and forth forever and ever, when the world goes too far in one direction it must swing back in the other. Today, overcentralization is a disease. The pendulum only has one way to go. Gollum, the Return of the King, (copyright New Line Cinema.) But centralized empires don’t give up easily. Like Gollum clutching the dark ring, they’ll do anything to hold onto that precious power at all costs. It’s not even about what’s good or right. It’s about power for the sake of power. At first the Dark Lords of the world don’t pay much attention to rag-tag bands of rebels. They’re scattered and disconnected. But then they sack a trade ship or take a city and suddenly the Eye of Sauron turns. And now the Eye has turned towards cryptos. The Dark Lord’s playbook is simple but devastatingly effective: Co-opt, coerce, corrupt, outlaw, and kill. And many of these were on full display the last few weeks. Corrupt and Coerce It started with China. First they lashed out at ICOs, declaring them illegal fundraising. Of course, many applauded the move. While ICOs represent a revolutionary new way to crowdsource funding, moving beyond the straight-jacket of “accredited investors” and VC money, the space was rampant with scams and questionable projects. While the crypto market initially reacted with a short drop, very quickly the trading public saw the move as positive. Bitcoin bounced right back up. They assumed China would make the freeze only temporary and provide better guidance to protect investors with sensible legislation. But they were wrong. It was only the opening shot in a new wave of information warfare. Over the next few weeks, the news became a deliberate and coordinated drip of terrifying information, designed to derange the market and spread panic. Instead of the China regulatory news breaking all at once, like a normal story does, it kept dripping out in “leaks” and press releases and planted stories. Soon a story dropped in the Wall Street Journal, citing only “unnamed sources familiar with the matter” that China planned to shutter all crypto exchanges. Now the panic really set in. The sell-off started in earnest. Still, many pro traders were calling for HODL, aka holding your position, and waiting for the price to correct back up. Most traders, including me, took the rational position that China would never ban exchanges because it made no sense for them to do it. We should have known better. Leaks don’t just happen in authoritarian regimes. The regulatory groups and circles of power meet in secret, in smoke filled rooms, behind closed doors. The people in those circles are chosen carefully for clannishness and absolute loyalty. Real leaks get people killed. The only leaks are deliberate ones. While the rumors swirled, the big three exchanges reacted with caution, saying they had received no official word from the People’s Bank of China (PBOC). But the optimism wouldn’t last. Despite the fact that closing down crypto exchanges will only drive trading underground, rob the Chinese government of tax revenue and crater their ability to enforce KYC or “Know Your Customer” style laws, the PBOC moved swiftly to attack exchanges. Right on schedule with the stream of negative news, the PBOC released a statement attacking the exchanges for running without a license. Now suddenly those exchanges that ran for years without issues need a made-up license to operate. You see, Chinese law doesn’t work like western law. Although the Chinese Constitution provides legal, executive and judicial powers, they’re all subject to the whim of the Communist Party. The Party is supreme. Courts and regulatory bodies don’t need to follow any of those frameworks in deciding cases. China runs by rule of man (rén zhì 人治), not rule of law (fǎzhì 法治). Essentially, it means that regulators can change the rules whenever they feel likeand that’s exactly what they did here. In classic rule of man style, the statement was overly broad, vague and subject to interpretation any way they saw fit, a staple of bad law making (just drop it into Google Translate to see). Now the panic really set in as traders dumped faster and faster. Classic trader memes flowed fast and furious from top crypto Twitter accounts. A few days later the first of the major exchanges, BTCC, announced it would suspend trading. A day later, the other two, OkCoin and Huboi, said they would meet with regulators. The day after that, they announced their own suspensions by the end of October. All hell broke loose. Bitcoin posted the largest one day red candle in history, as traders everywhere sold everything as fast as they could in a stampede of panic. And if it was just China news driving the market, that wouldn’t be enough to call it a coordinated attack on crypto. The Chinese government has flirted with cracking down on Bitcoin in the past and even closed exchanges. But this time was different. Hot on the heels of the Chinese story, a storm of negative press flooded the interwebs. Out of nowhere, the CEO of JP Morgan, a company known for investing in blockchain technology, called Bitcoin a “fraud” that’s “worse than tulips.” A few days later, JP Morgan’s lead quant backed the attack calling cryptocurrencies “pyramid schemes”. Soon after, CNBC was trotting out economist Mohamed El-Erian to say “Bitcoin should be worth half” what it was trading at, and that it would never achieve “mainstream adoption”, essentially the same argument they used against the Internet, video games, eBooks and digital cameras. Bitcoin is 'disruptive technology' but pricing assumes massive adoption: Mohamed El-Erian I think it is going to exist because it is a peer-to-peer currency, says Mohamed El-Erian, Allianz chief economic…www.cnbc.com Now the price of every single crypto was circling the drain, driven down by the relentless assault of information warfare. Innovative Chinese platforms, like NEO, took some of the biggest beatings. But why now? On the surface none of this makes sense. The blockchain space has been booming. Investor money is flooding in. While there are certainly a number of useless projects out there, the space is filled with startups who will revolutionize everything from neighbors trading solar energy among themselves to supply chain management, with heavy hitters like IBM and the Apache Foundation backing the technology. But when looked at through the lens of the eternal war between centralization and decentralization, it becomes much clearer. Guerilla Warfare For years cryptocurrencies have ripped along, mostly under the radar. Classic Communist propaganda poster. Early verbal assaults on coins were weak and didn’t do much to dampen enthusiasm among adherents to the crypto creed. Back in 2013, when the first attacks started, the market cap of Bitcoin was tiny, a mere spec of the global economic pie. It traded at around $10–$20. Not much for a centralized empire to worry about at all. Those attacks were simple and straightforward, such as saying that only drug dealers and criminals used Bitcoin, usually by calling attention to Silk Road. Big government boot-licking economist Paul Krugman posted a now infamous missive in the New York Times called “Bitcoin is Evil” describing it as a weapon “intended to damage central banking and money issuing banks.” But the attacks didn’t stick. Bitcoin’s price continued to rise, despite laughable obituaries getting written almost weekly. The biggest heist before Mt Gox, as portrayed in the movie Goodfellas. In fact, the only thing that brought the mighty money badger’s rise to a grinding halt was an actual crime, the hacking of Mt. Gox, the most well known early exchange. Hackers made off with 850,000 Bitcoins, more than $450 million dollars at the time, making it one of the most audacious heists in history. Even with Bitcoin’s recent price slide, those coins are now worth upwards of $3.1 billion dollars. That’s a lot of money. And it was a serious blow. If exchanges can’t keep money secure, they’re unusable. That attack brought about the “crypto winter” and the prices of every major coin remained depressed for over a year. But they’ve been on a tear ever since rising from under $300 in the aftermath of Mt Gox to $5000 at its peak this year. New cryptocurrencies, like Ethereum, sprang onto the scene. They looked to address the shortcomings of the original crypto king, by providing Turing complete programming languages, smart contracts and more. This year, ICOs raised more than $1.5 billion dollars, outpacing VC money as the number one way to raise cash but doing it all from small investors like Kickstarter on steroids. Projects designed to do everything from decentralized DNS, to identity management and distributed storage started making waves, promising to upend the way we do just about everything in technology. Even the companies and governments that initially laughed at the ideas behind Bitcoin started to understand the breakthrough power of the technology behind it: the blockchain. No longer would you need to go to one of three central companies to get a web certificate or register a domain name, you could go to a decentralized web of trust that no one group controlled. Along the way, Chinese miners came to dominate Bitcoin. Today they make up half of the mining power on Earth. Their entrepreneurs built the fastest ASIC chips, designed to mine coins at astonishing rates, and filled up huge data centers to run them. At the Consensus Summit this year, an industry trade show, the halls were covered with familiar logos like IBM, and Deloitte Touche and JP Morgan. Wait, what? JP Morgan? Aren’t those the same guys that were ripping Bitcoin a few weeks ago? That’s right. While CEO Jaime Dimon was pissing on Bitcoin, his office was hosting crypto venture capitalists and crypto investors in San Francisco. And his analysts were lauding the technology in their own papers calling blockchain “the real deal”: “While the notion of blockchain may seem novel, the underlying technology is not new. It is the combination of proven, existing technologies: peer-to-peer networking, asymmetric cryptography and cryptographic hashing (see: In plain English). Bitcoin was the innovation that combined these technologies, offering the ability to transfer value, while preventing double- spend in a trustless, pseudonymous, publicly accessible system.” Oh yeah, and at Consensus, JP Morgan announced they would integrate the anonymity technology behind Zcash, another crypocurrency, into their own blockchain technology. “Monday, the company behind Zcash, the Zerocoin Electric Coin Company(ZECC) announces a partnership with JPMorgan Chase to add Zcash’s privacy technology to Quorum, an enterprise blockchain platform JPMorgan built on Ethereum, a network similar to bitcoin’s but focused on smart contracts.” Wait, JP Morgan has their own blockchain too? You bet’cha. So what the hell is going on here? How is it that China’s regime turned its back on a technology that its entrepreneurs dominate, while big banks like JP Morgan tout the power of the blockchain and the innovation of Bitcoin, only to try to destroy the technology that created it? Simple. It’s about power and control. Barbarians at the Gate For the first time the powers that be have started to realize that cryptocurrencies aren’t just a toy. As the Russian Minister said they’re now “impossible to ignore”. They’re also impossible for any one group or nation to control. And that’s just what the banks and authoritarian regimes of the world fear. J.P. Morgan himself, the original “fat cat” of big finance. You see, companies like JP Morgan have dominated finance for more than a hundred years. They’ve acted as the intermediary between us and our money. They’re so powerful that J.P. Morgan once bailed out the U.S. Treasury. That’s right, one company bailed out the entire U.S. Government. And when you act as the choke point that everyone has to go through to get to the most precious resource in the modern world, that’s not a power you let go of lightly. In fact, you’d do anything to keep that power. On the other side of the world, the Chinese government holds even more power than the big banks here. The Great Firewall maintains strict control over what their people can see and hear. Currency controls keep their rapidly growing middle class from taking too much money out of the country. The government employs more than two million censors to crush dissent online across social media. If you want to protest the millions of people who’ve disappeared with no trial into black jails, the censors will make sure you can’t say a word. And lately, they’ve cracked down even harder. They recently banned the use of VPNs that tech savvy Chinese citizens have always used to get around the ridiculous limits of the Great Firewall. All this is coming because China typically brings the hammer down on all dissent before its big five year meeting of top communist party leaders. They don’t want anyone protesting the rules they make for them without their consent. But this feels different than past years. This feels like fear. One of the most powerful companies in America and the most dominant force in all of Asia see cryptocurrencies as a major threat. They see them as a powerful, swiftly gathering storm that can level the playing field against their absolute stranglehold on every aspect of our lives. So they’ve gone on the attack. The Blueprint of Fear Both attacks fall squarely into the playbook of co-opt, coerce, corrupt, outlaw and kill. Let’s start with JP Morgan. Their attack is trivially simple. It’s a confidence game. They want to destroy faith in decentralized money to reaffirm faith in centralized money. And since money isn’t backed by anything but our faith in it, that’s a very powerful attack indeed and it’s been working for the last two weeks, driving down the price. JP Morgan CEO Jamie Dimon went on his epic rant after his own daughter dared to buy Bitcoin. It’s because he knows his job is obsolete. His company has acted as the middleman for a century. And now the jig is up. Clearly his daughter knows more about the future of money than he does right now. Good for her. And of course, the unbelievable arrogance of him calling Bitcoin a “fraud” boggles the mind considering that the number of times his company has been convicted of actual fraud is astonishing, amounting to billions and billions of dollars in settlements. The Big Short Lets also remember that his firm and their quants helped orchestrate the greatest and most devastating fraud in modern history, the Collateralized Debt Obligation scam, that brought the housing market to a screeching halt, destroyed millions of American lives, crashed the world economy and slamming us face first into the Great Recession. The scam was simple. Take a bunch of triple A rated mortgages, lump them together with some garbage mortgages and then sell them all as a derivative that is still rated triple A. Maybe you’re still under the impression that it wasn’t a scam at all, that it was just a natural cycle of boom to bust. Housing prices go up and housing prices go down. But let’s take a closer look to understand why that’s just not the case. You can check out the delightful Margot Robbie in The Big Short movie explaining it all in two minutes or less, but I’ve whipped up my own little analogy to help as well. Imagine that you have a box of deluxe chocolates. You could charge a premium for those candies, right? Put a pretty bow on the box and mark up the price. Those premium candies are like triple A rated mortgages because the people who took out that money to buy a house can pay the money back. You make money as an investor by buying up that debt ahead of time at a lower price, and then you can collect the mortgage money over many years at a higher price and come out way ahead. Now imagine that someone takes half the chocolates out of the box and plunks down dog shit in there instead. After that they paint up the turds with black ink to make them look like deluxe truffles. Then they charge you same price as the premium box. Still sound like a good deal? Those painted shit bags are the mortgages that will never get paid, because they were sold to people who couldn’t afford it, rolled in with the premium mortgages and sold at the same price as the deluxe box of chocolates, as if nothing had changed at all. If that sounds like fraud, it’s because it is. Actual, literal fraud. And they got away it. Not a single person went to jail for it. In fact, we gave them more money to make sure they didn’t go bankrupt for perpetrating this mass rip-off on the world. The tax payers, aka you and me, gave them $12 billion additional dollars for cheating us, crashing the economy and ratcheting up debt world wide to utterly unsustainable levels. Zero Hedge reports that global debt now stands at a record high $217 trillion dollars, more than 327% of GDP. Yes, that is trillion with a capital T. That’s a lot of unpaid bills and a lot of cans kicked down the road. The people who caused this looming humanitarian disaster are the same people who are telling you that Bitcoin is a “fraud”. The sheer audacity of it is utterly incredible. I guess you can admire their cojones though, right? I mean if you’re going to lie, just go all in with it. Oh and while they’re speaking with forked tongues about fraud, they’re also investing in the technology, which brings us to their second attack: Co-opt and corrupt. They’re building their own blockchains and their own coins. It doesn’t matter that a single company controlling an entire blockchain is utterly worthless. That’s not a blockchain, that’s a database. It provides absolutely no additional value whatsoever but they’re doing it anyway. As Navil Ravikant, founder of Angel List, says: Why is it nonsense? Because the true power of the blockchain comes from distributing trust across an entire ecosystem. Contrary to popular belief, trust is not a fixed concept. Trust is a moving concept. If we entrust all of the power to a single entity and that entity goes bad, we’re screwed. Just check out our good friends at Equifax, who couldn’t keep our data safe and managed to leak the personal information of half of the United States. Oh yeah and Equifax provides root certificates on the web as well. That’s why blockchains use a twist on the “web of trust” concept. They spread out trust so that untrustworthy central entities don’t get to keep our trust after repeatedly violating it again and again. They’re a check and balance on everyone in the chain, so that no one group can gain complete control over everyone else. If the bank, its shareholders, its regulators and all of its deposit holders hold the keys to the blockchain, then you have a true distribution of power. Only the rules that everyone can agree on will get passed. That’s the essence of democracy in action. Checks and balances. But a bank coin is owned by just the bank. That’s the same old broken trust model we’ve always had up until now. So why are they doing it? Because if a bank owns all the keys, they can do what they always do, change the game on a whim, defraud the public as they see fit and make you foot the bill for it, while laughing at you. They want centrally controlled “blockchains” because they can go on rigging the rules in their favor forever. And the Chinese government wants the exact same so let’s turn our attention across the sea for a few moments. The Chinese Dynasty Redux The very first emperor of China outlawed local currencies and made one coin to rule them all. He did that to make sure that nobody else could stand against him. China still uses a dynastic system, whether they call it that or not. A rose by any other name is still a rose. The dynasties of China never went away. They just transformed. The PRC is nothing but an extension of the same system that’s ruled China for the last five thousand years. One emperor or one party makes no difference. It’s the same. Either one guy makes all the rules or a thousand guys do. And its methods are the same too. While both China and JP Morgan’s assaults amount to an attack on confidence, designed to destroy faith in cryptocurrency, China takes it one step further. Their rulers just lept head first into using the law as a weapon. It started with banning ICOs under the guise of protecting the public, then banning the exchanges for being “unlicensed” even though no such license exists. That works because some people see the law as good no matter what. If the law says everyone has to jump off a bridge tomorrow, that’s the law and the law is good. Everyone better start jumping or else. But a law is only as good as the people who wield it. In a just society, the laws are just. In an unjust society, the laws are unjust too. That’s why every major atrocity in the history of man from the mass slaughter of Native Americans to the Holocaust was “legal”. Jihan Wu, owner of the biggest Bitcoin mine on the planet, jumped in to say that exchanges should retroactively require that made up license. I guess he better hope the government doesn’t decide to invent a license to run a Bitcoin mine too and then seize all his profits! First they came for the Bitcoin traders but I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a trader. Then they came for the Bitcoin users but I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t really a user either. Then they came for the miners and there was nobody left to speak up for me. China’s regime clearly recognize the disruptive power of the blockchain and they want to capture that power like lightning in a bottle. They want to make sure they don’t lose control of the money supply, because money is power. In other words, they want to make sure they don’t get disrupted too. That’s why they’re working with private companies like Deloitte Touche to build their own “state sponsored” cryptocurrency. If that sounds ominous, that’s because it is ominous, even though Deloitte put that on their website without a trace of irony. The Chairman knows how to cripple an economy and starve 45 million people! Trust him with making the next “state sponsored” crypto! What could go wrong? Just like American companies helped China build the Great Firewall, Deloitte’s consultants are helping China create a crypto with a backdoor into every transaction, which will help them monitor and control every aspect of their people’s lives. It will grant them the power to remotely turn off your money like turning out a light. And that would actually be a brand new power for China’s dynasties. There is an old Chinese proverb: 天高皇帝远 “Heaven is high and the Emperor is far away.” It means that the country is too vast and its people too scattered for the emperor to keep an eye on everything. Despite the iron fist of the Party and the other emperors before them, the Middle Kingdom is actually incredibly decentralized in many ways. The only way that the regime can keep a hold on their citizens is through a show of force. They can’t stop everything they hate, so they might pick a random group of people and punish them with a vicious show trial. They’ve mastered this charade in places like Tibet, where they put a professor in jail for life when they couldn’t get a handle on the constant wave of uprising in the far western Xinjiang province at the edge of the world. It’s a classic use of the violence hack, the one hack to rule them all. Pick a random person, kill or imprison him and you let everyone know it could happen to you too. Controlling all digital money would amount to an unprecedented new power in the hands of the PRC. If they’re successful, they’ll have a crippled, centrally controlled money system that spreads the power of the emperor across the land, putting the Eye of Sauron into every single pocket and smart phone, giving them a two-way lens into every aspect of their people’s lives. Think of it as Panopticon money. Eye of Sauron as depicted in the film version of LOTR. © New Line Cinema Inglorious Bastards If all of that sounds like a bunch of folks who don’t deserve a lick of trust trying to jam a false narrative down your throat, that’s because it is a bunch of untrustworthy bastards trying to jam a false narrative down your throat. Here’s the thing though: In the long run, none of these attacks will work. First off, nobody trusts the big banks not to lie to us. We’ve been burned too many times. They can crow all they want about fraud, but everyone knows the Emperor has no clothes. The collateralized debt obligation scam was their last get out of jail free card. The debt bubble is building again but it’s bigger than it was in 2008 by an order of magnitude. And when it pops this time, none of them are getting a bailout or escaping a cell. Cryptocurrencies are built to survive chaos. That’s why they thrive in failed states like Venezuela, where the people are starving and their money is worthless because of idiotic socialist rulers who failed them. In the last few years, billions and billions in smart money has poured into thousands and thousands of blockchain projects. Someone is out there right now, working on the killer app, the one that will make cryptocurrencies take off like a rocketship. And when we hit that Mozilla moment, traditional companies will rush to embrace it and to defend the powerful new marketplace of ideas because now they have something to lose if it goes away. And the countries that stand against the blockchain will have that mistake blow back on them with terrible fury. If China crushes the exchanges for good and cuts off mining, their historical enemies, like Japan, will simply embrace it with glee, as they already have today. Their citizens will only go underground with it and they’ll lose any hope they have of enforcing KYC and stopping massive capital flight, especially as their house of cards economy crumbles. The Chinese are masterful at faking GDP growth. They’ve taken “shovel and pour” contracts to an epic level. Each local party boss is tasked with a target growth rate every year, usually an insanely impossible 7% or more. There is simply no way to achieve it legitimately. What do you do when you don’t have enough entrepreneurial spirit to grow at a faster clip than Internet companies in the 1990’s bubble? Build a bunch of useless crap. China used more cement in the last three years than the US did in the last century. They build entire cities where nobody lives. They’re called Ghost Cities. That’s not real growth, that’s fake growth. And the worst irony is that if they go after their own miners, they’ll only end up crippling their most innovative real entrepreneurs. The biggest Bitcoin miner in China recently turned their chip designers loose on the power of AI, creating a deep learning ASIC. AI is a technology China wants to dominate in the coming years. If the government seizes their Bitcoin mines and cuts off their primary source of funding, that chip will never come to market and they’ll lose their chance to shape the future of all technology. Once again, an American firm or a European one will dominate chip making for decades. The Aftermath You may think this is the death knell for decentralized money. Think again. Cryptocurrencies are amazingly resilient. Already, the markets are shaking off the attacks. Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are bouncing back up fast. They move at video game speed. If a traditional market takes three years to recover, Bitcoin takes three months or a few weeks. That’s because bitcoin and cryptos are bigger than any one country or company. If someone doesn’t want to play nice, they won’t get to play in the sandbox at all. And if countries drive their citizens away from legitimate avenues to participate, they’ll only adopt illicit ones until that country realizes the terrible error of its ways. In the wake of the ongoing attack on crypto, privacy focused currencies like Monero, PIVX, Dash, and Zcash are looking hotter than ever. Lightweight mobile wallets will make them even better. Even Ethereum is looking to roll in the privacy tech behind Zcash, starting with their rapidly approaching Metropolis hard fork. Expect them to deliver a big return in the coming months if the wave of misinformation continues. The highly respected International Business Times just ran a story about the power of Monero to stop mega-data breaches like Equifax’s disastrous breakdown, which will cost Americans billions of dollars as hackers gleefully open credit cards in our names. If you’ve worked in computers for more than ten minutes you know the truth: No central company or country can keep our data secure. They have to play perfect defense and the hackers just need to score once. There is only one way to keep our data safe. Don’t keep that data at all. Privacy isn’t just a nice-to-have in a stable and secure society, it’s an absolute necessity. That’s why the Founding Fathers of the United States gave us the Fourth Amendment: “ The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.” If they were writing it today, they’d have included the right to be secure in our digital devices and papers too. That’s because they grew up in a totalitarian society, where the empire could make laws without their consent, put up soldiers in people’s houses and make them foot the bill and charge people in secret courts. Decentralized cryptocurrencies give people back privacy and control over their lives, while balancing the need for law and order. Every healthy society needs both. The only people who don’t get that are the same people who have never gotten it because they don’t care about anyone but themselves. The banks can keep their crappy shitcoins. Nobody will buy them. We’re not fooled. And countries like Venezuela can keep their hyperinflated money and socialist power mongers too. Today the banks and central powers have all our money, all our gold records and all our former hits. But we don’t need it anymore. They can go ahead and keep all that shit. Like Dr Dre, we’re moving on to bigger and better things. We’re taking back our lives and our money. The empire may have struck back. But the aftermath has only begun. ############################################ If you enjoyed this article, please feel free clap it up or email it off to a friend! Thanks much. ########################################### If you love the crypto space as much as I do, come on over and join DecStack, the Virtual Co-Working Spot for CryptoCurrency and Decentralized App Projects, where you can rub elbows with multiple projects in the space. It’s totally free forever. Just come on in and socialize, work together, share code and ideas. Make your ideas better through feedback. Find new friends. Meet your new family. ########################################### Photo credit A bit about me: I’m an author, engineer and serial entrepreneur. During the last two decades, I’ve covered a broad range of tech from Linux to virtualization and containers. You can check out my latest novel,an epic Chinese sci-fi civil war saga where China throws off the chains of communism and becomes the world’s first direct democracy, running a highly advanced, artificially intelligent decentralized app platform with no leaders.
  4. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iGMHpb4rNTg&t=215s
  5. http://www.banklesstimes.com/2017/09/15/dash-now-listed-on-london-cryptocurrency-exchange/ Payments cryptocurrency Dash is now listed on London’s CEX.IO cryptocurrency exchange. It can also be bought and sold online with a linked bank account. CEX is a FinCEN-registered and PCI DSS-compliant exchange and broker that allows users to trade between different currency/fiat pairs and buy and sell digital currencies online with bank transfers or verified bank cards. It has more than one million registered users. “CEX.IO has a long and respected track record operating in the digital currency space,” Dash Core CEO Ryan Taylor said. “Their team is highly focused on the safety, stability, and legal compliance of its platform. For Dash users and traders, the integration into CEX.IO represents another great option for them to acquire Dash through bank transfers or with payment cards from a significant number of countries. Ryan Taylor “The site’s ‘Buy / Sell’ feature makes acquiring Dash as easy as making a typical online purchase. We are especially proud to see Dash added as the latest digital currency on CEX.IO’s platform, as they are very selective about the currencies they choose to add.” “We see Dash as a top rated digital currency so it was really only a matter of time before we joined forces,” CEX.IO CEO Alex Lutskevych said. “We really respect the fact that Dash is based on a real decentralized ledger and has such a strong core team and growing community. Dash also features a two-tier architecture of PrivateSend, InstantSend, decentralized governance and a budget system. “It’s obvious that Dash matures fast. Most importantly, Dash’s InstantSend function is incredibly impressive; in my opinion it has already paved the way for and surpassed Bitcoin’s Lightning Network, which will allow for faster Bitcoin transactions to take place. Dash are true standard setters.”
  6. On September 7, the capital of Sweden hosted Blockchain & Bitcoin Conference Stockholm for the first time. The event brought together owners of businesses related to cryptocurrencies and blockchain-based solutions. It was attended by more than 350 participants and 19 speakers from 13 countries. [Note: This is a press release.] The conference took place at the Elite Hotel Marina Tower, the nineteenth-century majestic building near the city center. The hotel is known not only for its wonderful architecture and interiors but also by a high-end service. KEY PRESENTATIONS The event allowed to discuss the prospects and technical details of blockchain integration in businesses, legislative regulation of cryptocurrencies in Sweden and the world as well as the opportunities for investing in cryptocurrency crowdsales, mining, and cybersecurity. The keynote speaker of the conference – Mathias Sundin, Sweden Member of Parliament – said that the blockchain would help to prevent global financial crises. He revealed his viewpoint of society changes to be caused by bitcoin: authorities would no longer belong to state institutions but would shift to citizens. Frank Schuil, the CEO at Safello Stockholm cryptocurrency exchange, discussed the bitcoin opportunities and changes of society’s attitude to cryptocurrencies. Sofie Blakstad, the founder of Hiveonline, presented her vision of cryptocurrency future: “Within nearest 5-10 years, digital currencies will revolutionize financial markets.” The speaker talked about the risks and advantages of digital currencies issued by central banks for developing countries. Several presentations were dedicated to the popular ICO topic: Daniel Zakrisson, Natalia Tokar, Julian Hosp and Oleg Kudrenko told the audience how to choose a project for investing as well as revealed existing risks and ways to avoid them. They discussed in detail the ICO launch and legislative regulation of crowdsales. Martin Mischke, the СЕО at Brickblock, explained how the blockchain would make a real property purchase process faster and allow to reduce prices due to abandoning intermediaries’ services. Karolina Marzantowicz, IBM Distinguished Engineer, devoted her presentation to blockchain impact on energy and utilities. Robert Wiecko and Fernando Gutierrez presented the Dash project: an open payment system based on the blockchain with anonymized transactions. Vladislav Martynov, a co-founder of BlockGeeksLab, talked about the demands of modern economy in such cryptocurrency assets as stable coin and its connection to gold. The event also included the exhibition of blockchain projects. Seventeen companies from various countries presented their recent solutions. The conference was held by Smile-Expo, an organizer of the major international series of Blockchain & Bitcoin Conference events, taking place annually in Russia, Ukraine, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Kazakhstan, Malta and other countries. More information about company’s projects can be found on the website. http://bitcoinist.com/blockchain-bitcoin-conference-stockholm-brought-together-politicians-investors-developers/
  7. Dash now trading on new Japanese Exchange https://www.qryptos.com Disclaimer: QRYPTOS does not currently serve Japan residents. For Japan customers, please go to quoinex.com
  8. https://www.dashforcenews.com/dash-copay-multisig-wallet-first-step-evolution-heads-alpha-testing/ Dash Copay Multisig Wallet, First Step of Evolution, Heads to Alpha Testing Posted by Joël Valenzuela | Sep 13, 2017 | News | The Dash version of the Copay wallet, the base for the Evolution wallet, has entered its alpha testings phase. Copay is a multisignature (multisig) Bitcoin wallet designed by BitPay that allows users to set up joint accounts and put funds in control of multiple parties. The Dash Evolution team is working on a Dash version of this wallet, titled Dashpay, as a base for the Evolution upgrade, which will give a clean user-friendly experience and allow some advanced functions such as joint accounts, savings accounts, private cash accounts, recurring payments, and more. Joshua Seigler, Evolution frontend developer for Dash Core, is pleased with the experience so far: “Copay has a good reputation as a Bitcoin wallet, none of that solid feeling or great UX has been lost from what I’ve seen.” The wallet will undergo rigorous testing to support a large user base The wallet is undergoing rigorous alpha testing in order to be ready to easily support a large amount of users later this year and beyond. According to Chuck Williams, head of UI/UX development for Dash Core, the experience inherited from Copay has been stellar: “Implementing the Copay wallet for the Dash network has been a tremendous learning experience for our team. While there is some obvious technical debt in the inherited codebase provided by Bitpay, the functionality provided for multiplatform HD and multisignature wallets is probably one of the most user friendly experiences available from an open source bitcoin wallet.” Williams projects that by the end of the year, as many as 15,000 could be using the Dashpay wallet: “Our next steps is to harden the interface with some user testing while we prepare production environments for public launch. Currently it looks like mid-to-late October, or possibly early November before we’re production ready. Based on current estimates, we’re preparing to onboard 10-15 thousand users on this release before end of Q4, 2017.” Initial milestones for Evolution have begun to be hit With the initial testing of the Dashpay wallet, the first stages of Evolution’s are starting to see the light. Over the course of the rest of the year, the alpha of Evolution will be released to partners for additional testing. According to the roadmap, Evolution will see a livenet release in February, with a mainnet public release in June. The Evolution upgrade will be a multi-stage, multi-year process to support millions of users around the world.
  9. DASH and decentralized governance by blockchain DASH and decentralized governance by blockchain https://bitcoiner.today/en/dash-and-decentralized-governance-by-block-chain/ AltCoins DASH and decentralized governance by blockchain 7th September 2017 Jordi Carrera 0 Comments dash, decentraliced, governance, masternodes Decentralized governance: the consensus of blocks Dash is the first decentralized autonomous organization operating with a Sybil-tested decentralized governance and funding system. Decentralized governance by Blockchain (DGBB), referred to simply as the “treasury system”, is a means of reaching consensus on the proposed changes to the network and the development of Dash ecosystem finance. Ten percent of the block awards go to this “treasury” to pay for projects that benefit Dash. Treasury funding has been used to hire additional developers and other employees to fund conference attendance and to fund integrations with major exchanges and API providers. This is how Dash stands, without the need for external funds, everything is created in the DASH network. Each masternode operator receives one vote. Proposals are eligible for funding according to the following formula: (YES VOTES – NO VOTES)> (TOTAL NUMBER OF MASTERNODES * 0.1). If there are more proposals that meet this criterion than budget funds for the month, proposals with the highest net votes will be paid. Community interaction with proposal submitters is done through dash.org forums, or through community-driven websites such as DashCentral. These websites allow proposal submitters to submit several drafts and then press for community support before finally submitting their project to the network for a vote. After the sender has sufficient support, the network will automatically pay the necessary funds in the next super block, which occurs monthly. Governance and Financing The funding system has experienced revenue growth. In September 2015, the treasury system provided $ 14,000 in funds per month. Due to increases in the value of Dash, as of May 2017 the treasury system provides more than $ 650,000 per month in financing. An example of decentralized government, which also has the treasury system that has created a positive feedback loop, through which additional development increases the value of Dash, which increases the amount of funding provided by the budget system. It is impressive to see that the DASH network and the trust in a decentralized digital government are increasingly being strengthened, and it can be a milestone in the world of crypto-metadata of finance and sustainable economy totally consensuated without the need for totalitarian or authoritarian central governments. Masternodes: The Governance of Dash With increased confidence and consensus through network voting, many are already thinking of creating more master nodes to earn a percentage of all the mined blocks. If more nodes are created, the distribution must be fair and equal for all. Being more to share of the global percentage, it might be that it was not so interesting to disburse important capital for the creation of new nodes. Of course, everything depends on the supply-demand, leaving in the future a fixed percentage for all. What is expected in the future is a balance of nodes that support and is the basis of the Dash network, adding nodes when power grows and is necessary, creating a sustainable economy that would pay the expenses of the servers and have net benefits. Another novelty that is expected to be implemented in the portfolios of our computers is that each one can “freeze” a certain amount of DASH, 10-20-30 …. etc .. to encompass a complete node, yes, they can not touch if we want to receive a percentage of the reward, equal to what is saved for the node. In this way, many users of DASH portfolios will collaborate in the creation of these important nodes for the DASH crypto metric ecosystem and make it decentralized. Undoubtedly, it is a clear example and a huge open governance project, a decentralized “new way of governing” that is possible and real in a digital world.
  10. What banks can learn from a cryptocurrency's bug bounty program https://www.americanbanker.com/news/what-banks-can-learn-from-a-cryptocurrencys-bug-bounty-program What banks can learn from a cryptocurrency's bug bounty program By Brian Patrick Eha Published September 06 2017, 12:35pm EDT Print Email Reprints Share Financial institutions are prime targets for hackers, but there may be one species of prey even more appealing: digital currencies. The value not only of bitcoin but of the entire market for blockchain assets has exploded in the past six months, and one of the upstarts is taking no chances that its system can be compromised. The creators of Dash, a bitcoin rival, have hired the San Francisco-based security company Bugcrowd to run a "bug bounty" program on its behalf, enticing independent security researchers to pore over the cryptocurrency's code and paying them for every flaw they find. "As an open-source project, all of our code is available to be audited by anyone. But this will really bring a set of highly professional eyes to the code and make sure that it is as robust as possible," said Ryan Taylor, CEO of Dash's core team, which is run like a for-profit startup. Talk to cryptocurrency insiders like Taylor—individuals who have helped create and secure these unique pieces of software—and they will tell you that banks could learn a lot from open-source projects like Dash about how to build applications and secure their networks. After all, the time for pretending that it is possible to make an app or network impregnable from the get-go—if it ever existed—is long gone. The new security paradigm is one of "persistent threats," in which the safest assumption is that a malicious actor has already penetrated your system. Have at it "Rather than trying to hide the flaws," says Ryan Taylor of the Dash project, "we try to give as many people as possible the opportunity to find them and then fix them." Whether the code underlies a bank system or an internet currency, "vulnerabilities are inherent in how software is created," said Casey Ellis, chairman and chief technology officer of Bugcrowd. "They're a fact of life." This is so because people design things to do what they're meant to do, he said. Software developers aren't necessarily thinking about how to make their applications secure, merely effective. What Bugcrowd wants to do for the Dash team, as for all of its clients, Ellis said, is to "create a feedback loop between people who think like builders and people who think like breakers." From this process arises a resilient product. That resiliency has become ever more essential as Dash's value has skyrocketed. On Aug. 26 it set a record high of about $400 per coin, an increase of some 3,384% since Jan. 1. Dash's market capitalization briefly touched $3 billion over the weekend before settling back to about $2.8 billion in the early morning hours of Sunday. "Given that this is a financial product, it's extremely important that we explore all avenues possible in order to make the network as secure as possible," Taylor said. Dash is self-funded: The Dash community finances ongoing software and business development for the cryptocurrency with a portion of the new coins that are created at regular intervals through "block rewards." Dozens of developers and support staff are now on the team's payroll. As the cryptocurrency's value mounts, the block rewards become more lucrative. That made it easy to set aside $200,000 for the bug bounty pool. The money will be shared among any researchers who detect and report a bug. The more severe the impact of that vulnerability, the higher the reward—up to $10,000 for the most critical flaws. Bugcrowd plans to start small with the bounty program, initially revealing Dash's code only to a few dozen highly skilled security experts, before ramping it up over time. Ultimately, all of the 60,000 researchers in Bugcrowd's network will have a chance to participate. To bankers, accustomed to the demands of proprietary software, the approach can only seem a radical one. "Rather than trying to hide the flaws," Taylor said, "we try to give as many people as possible the opportunity to find them and then fix them." Lessons for banks This radical transparency has worked wonders for bitcoin. Although the digital currency's network hasn't been compromised in years, says Taylor, in August 2010 there was an incident in which a hacker exploited a flaw in the code to create 92 billion bitcoins out of thin air—massively inflating the supply of a currency that was supposed to have a hard cap of 21 million. Bitcoin's pseudonymous creator, Satoshi Nakamoto, was forced to do an emergency "fork" of the code to fix the issue. Since then, dozens of developers have improved upon and countless outsiders have examined the code. For a long time, Ellis himself was skeptical regarding bitcoin's security. He figured that a catastrophic exploit would be found sooner or later, and the cryptocurrency's value would drop to zero. But that never happened. "The result is pretty astounding when you think about it. Bitcoin is completely open-source, yet the last significant hack of it took place [seven] years ago," Taylor said. "You end up with a highly secure system despite not funding any firewalls, not funding any security staff to try to prevent people from accessing it, not funding any detection systems. None of that is necessary if you design it in a way where it's essentially hack-proof." While bitcoin wallets and bitcoin exchanges have been compromised many times, the network itself has proven to be a model of what the author Nassim Nicholas Taleb calls antifragility—it has become more resilient by withstanding attacks. This sort of design ethos is anathema to banks, which have traditionally relied on secrecy—keeping their code private, whether it was developed in-house or written by vendors such as Fiserv, FIS or Jack Henry—and trying to deny access to hackers in order to keep their systems secure. To be fair, this has been slowly changing in recent years as a number of banks, including Citigroup, BBVA, JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo and Capital One have opened up developer hubs that give third parties access to some of their code and data. Some large banks use bug bounty programs, though they don't like talking about them, and some are seriously testing and considering open-source blockchain technologies, including Hyperledger and Quorum, for certain purposes such as derivatives clearing. And there are a few open-source core banking initiatives, such as the Open Bank Project and Apache Fineract, though they haven't been widely adopted in the United States. Yet even if they can't, or won't, fully adopt the open-source mindset of security through transparency, financial institutions can learn from its best practices. One step might be to embrace wholeheartedly the practice of rewarding coders for finding and patching bugs. "Programmers like creating stuff," Taylor said. "It's far less sexy to comb through legacy code that has existed for years and attempt to find vulnerabilities in it. And it's unlikely that their bosses are going to pat them on the back for spending a chunk of time looking for bugs and not finding them. And if they do find them, [their managers] generally say, 'OK, great, good for you.' But there's no incentive there. If they fail to find anything, they're scolded; and if they do find something, it's viewed as luck." Building bug-hunting bonuses into the pay structure of engineers, for instance, would send the message that software quality is more important than quantity. "If you incentivize programmers to find and resolve bugs, it will change behavior," Taylor said. Banks could also start open-sourcing certain parts of their systems, suggested Alex Waters, a former bitcoin quality assurance engineer and the chief technology officer of the stealth startup GetKelvin. "There are aspects of their applications that probably should be open-source—things like authentication and communication," said Waters. "Which is not to say that they'd be open-sourcing the underlying data. Of course not. It's just they'd be making available for public review the methodology for authentication, for example." Taylor agrees, with the caveat that any software providing a true competitive advantage should be kept under wraps. But for commoditized functions and services, banks could actually reduce their security risks by using open-source software, he said. "And I don't think that is ever really a consideration for them. I think they blindly use closed-source, or commercial, software for everything." Nothing banks can't handle Waters, who has consulted for banks, is convinced of the open-source approach's benefits. "Generally speaking, large open-source projects are far more secure than in-house, private software," he said. "And within the realm of large open-source projects, cryptocurrencies—because of their inherent nature as being based on cryptography—tend to be the most secure, and security-conscious, groups." What, then, of banks working with cryptocurrencies themselves? Asked whether financial institutions are right to be wary of these new technologies, since by and large they can't be centrally controlled, Bugcrowd's Ellis says no. "I don't consider crypto to be a unique or a special case from a vulnerability standpoint," he said. Article Battle for the home screen As the phone replaces the … PARTNER INSIGHTS SPONSOR CONTENT FROM: BankingJuly 28 You can count on any software being attacked at some point, he clarified. What does make digital currency unique is that "the [monetary] value is inherent in the code," so major flaws in the code can be financially catastrophic. Extra care and attention is required, and that is where his company's crowdsourced security comes in. "You don't build a three-foot fence to defend against a 10-foot attacker, because that would be ineffective," he said. "But you also don't build a 10-foot fence to defend against a three-foot attacker, because that would be economically irrational." Ultimately, the security challenges posed by cryptocurrencies are nothing banks can't handle, Waters said, provided that they "apply everything they already know. What better industry to work on custody, settlement and clearing for cryptocurrencies than the banking industry, which has been doing [these things] for years? They're totally equipped to understand all of the various risks and how to mitigate them."
  11. Dash Community To Fund Max Keiser and Stephen Baldwin Road Trip https://bitsonline.com/dash-keiser-baldwin-roadtrip/?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=SocialWarfare Dash Community To Fund Max Keiser and Stephen Baldwin Road Trip 325 Views September 4, 2017 by Jon Southurst 0 Comments Fans of privacy-oriented cryptocurrency Dash are sponsoring a road trip across the U.S. by Max Keiser and Stephen Baldwin. The celebrity pair will produce a 16-episode reality show to record their journey. Also read: Hackers Still Targeting Hal Finney’s Family Over Satoshi Nakamoto The Dash network raised $500,000 worth of donations to sponsor Keiser’s show “The GAP: Great American Pilgrimage”, which will air on the RT network worldwide. It should be a great promotional opportunity for the coin — RT claims to have hundreds of millions of subscribers worldwide, and reaches a predominantly younger audience. Dash forum member Mark Mason announced a formal proposal (submitted by Jeff Smith) to sponsor the show in August. “With the recent price rise in Dash increasing the available treasury budget. It feels now would be the optimal time to pursue this,” he said. For its money, the Dash community gets branding wrap on Keiser and Baldwin’s RV, and the hosts will wear branded merchandise. They will mention Dash on the episodes, possibly interview a Core developer, and plug the cryptocurrency on other media appearances and publicity material. The “GAP” program itself isn’t explicitly about cryptocurrencies, but will likely contain economic themes. Keiser has also promised to “preach cryptocurrencies” along the way. He and Baldwin plan to travel across the United States in a bus, stopping in ordinary towns to “ask everyday Americans: what do you think America’s about?” Keiser Likes Dash Structure, Got Turned Down by Monero Keiser reportedly said he was approached by several blockchain-related projects to sponsor the show. He eventually chose Dash, he said, due to its enthusiastic community. He also liked the “Masternode” mining reward/voting model that allows the decentralized network to also make decisions like a large corporation. In fact, he first offered a sponsorship deal to Riccardo Spagni (a.k.a. “FluffyPony”), project leader of rival coin Monero, during a TV interview. However the ever non-commercial Spagni wasn’t interested. “It’s an open source project, we have no money,” he replied, as Keiser appeared flabbergasted. About Keiser and Baldwin Keiser is an economic iconoclast and entrepreneur who has hosted his show “The Keiser Report” on RT since 2009. He has also been associated with a number of cryptocurrency projects, most famously “Maxcoin” and the ill-fated Startcoin. Stephen Baldwin Baldwin is a Hollywood actor most famous for his 80s and 90s movies like The Usual Suspects, Threesome and Bio-Dome. He is the youngest of the four “Baldwin brothers”, all of whom are actors. In July, Baldwin appeared on FOX business show “Varney & Co.” to talk about his interest in Bitcoin, and friendship with Keiser. He referred to cryptocurrencies as “kinda like stocks… a little bit,” and “a great way to make money from home”. In that interview, he also added the Great American Pilgrimage show would “most likely be funded by one of these Bitcoin companies”. In the end, it wasn’t a Bitcoin company but Dash itself that won out. Other communities will likely be interested to see what the exposure brings. What do you think of this deal? Tell us about it in the comments.
  12. Digital Currency Meets Mixed Martial Arts as Renowned Coach Gives Away $20,000 in Dash https://cointelegraph.com/news/digital-currency-meets-mixed-martial-arts-as-renowned-coach-gives-away-20000-in-dash Digital currency and mixed martial arts are not two topics that naturally go together, but Firas Zahabi doesn’t see why they shouldn’t. Zahabi is the head coach of Tristar Gym and the trainer of MMA champion Georges St-Pierre. He’s also a digital currency enthusiast. Zahabi grabbed a great deal of attention last week when he offered $10,000 of the digital currency Dash to whoever predicted the precise outcome of the Mayweather-McGregor match. The winner, Mantas Šerpytis, was just announced this week, having predicted a Mayweather win in the 10th by TKO. As a bonus prize, Zahabi offered $100 in Dash to 100 random people who signed up for the contest. Cointelegraph had an opportunity to speak with Firas Zahabi and ask him about his interest in digital currency, and Dash in particular. The following transcript is lightly edited for clarity. Interview Cointelegraph: Firas, MMA and digital currency seem to be strange bedfellows. Most people think of digital currency in relation to finance and commerce. How is cryptocurrency relevant to your world? Firas Zahabi: Cryptocurrency is great for us because our viewers can send money very easily, especially with the new Dash app. It's really too easy. Also cryptocurrency is on the rise so when we receive cryptocurrency we are optimistic that the value will keep rising. CT: There are thousands of digital currencies, with heavyweights such as Bitcoin and Ethereum dominating the scene. Why choose Dash? FZ: We love Dash because of the new app. The transactions are instant and the fees are minimal. What more can you ask for? Many of us also still love Bitcoin and other crypto's, but Dash is the first to have such a great app. CT: I'm told you encourage your fighters to get paid in Dash. Can you talk a little more about that? FZ: We get paid in cryptocurrency, and especially Dash, because Dash and other cryptocurrencies are considered an asset and not a currency here in Canada. This allows us to compete and not fall under the category of prize fighting. Most important of all, cryptocurrency makes it really easy for our viewers to send the competitors money. Viewers can show their appreciation and reward competitors for their effort by simply scanning the competitors QR code on screen. Keep it simple According to Mark Mason, Director of Media & PR of Dash Force News: “What really impresses me about Firas is that he admits openly he is not great with technology, but due to the ease of use of Dash in comparison to Bitcoin he is introducing Dash Digital Cash to a whole new audience.” Zahabi actually takes the time to educate his viewers on how to use digital currency. Unlike others who just show a QR code and hope for the best, Zahabi takes things a step further. He actually does live demonstrations on his shows, teaching viewers how to use the Dash wallet app to send and receive money. Firas Zahabi has been interested in Dash since a random connection caused him to meet Jeff Smith, who works for the Dash Core Team. The two communicated for awhile, and the idea of a Dash giveaway was born.
  13. Update: Dash Team joining the Bitkan Beijing Conference 9th Sep - Ryan - Flare - Tungfa - nmarley - quantumexplorer - ... Update: Dash Team joining the Bitkan Beijing Conference 9th Sep - Ryan - Flare - Tungfa - nmarley - quantumexplorer - ...
  14. Danny from The Crypto Show is the BEST