Bitcoins Worth $300,000 Recovered by ‘Breaking Zip Encryption’

Ursprünglich erschienen auf: https://thebitcoinnews.com/bitcoins-worth-300000-recovered-by-breaking-zip-encryption/

A cryptographer has posted an article discussing how he cracked an encrypted zip file to recover a lost hoard of Bitcoin keys. This story underscores the need to keep keys safe, and always remember passwords.

Bitcoin Private Keys Found By Cracking INFOZIP
The author, Mike Stay, has a Ph.D. in computer science and an extensive background in cryptography dating to the 1990s. He discusses how he was contacted and hired to crack an encrypted zip file from a man that read a paper he had written on the subject almost twenty years ago. The file contained the private keys to USD $300k worth of Bitcoins purchased in 2016, yet the man had forgotten the password.
He states:
Back in January of 2016, he had bought around $10K or $15K of Bitcoin and put the keys in an encrypted zip file. Now they were worth upwards of $300K and he couldn’t remember the password. Luckily, he still had the original laptop and knew exactly when the encryption took place. Because InfoZip seeds its entropy using the timestamp, that promised to reduce the work enormously—”only” 10 quintillion—and made it quite feasible, a matter of a couple of months on a medium GPU farm. We made a contract and I got to work.
Stay notes that he was able to re-learn his earlier skills, and with some help crack the zip file within a matter of days.
It is important to note that at no time did Stay crack the code to the keys themselves, nor did he compromise any other element of the Bitcoin protocol. Rather, he merely found the password to an encrypted zip file which could have contained any information.
Act Raises Security Concerns
Experts agree that the encryption behind Bitcoin and most other top altcoins is extremely secure, and attempts to crack private keys using presently-available techniques would be futile. Nevertheless, there remains a risk of theft or loss if such keys are not stored properly.
Unfortunately, all too often crypto investors store keys and passwords in unencrypted files, or they follow other lax procedures that put their coins at risk. Sometimes, as outlined in Stay’s story, they do not keep track of passwords. It is well known that almost all cryptocurrency theft and loss is due to user error.
It is impossible to know how many Bitcoins are now irretrievably lost. By some estimates, it is as high as 25% of all present in existence. Perhaps the most speculated upon are the more than one million Bitcoins known to be owned by Satoshi Nakamoto. These have remained unmoved for more than ten years. Craig Wright’s claims notwithstanding, one commonly believed theory is that Satoshi, whoever he is, can no longer access them.
Thus, it is crucially important to follow proper security guidelines when storing cryptocurrency. Passwords must be stored safely, and files encrypted using the latest techniques. Whereas there is no way to guarantee total security, improper personal handling is a very easy way to lose access to funds.
What do you think about this lost and found Bitcoin story? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

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COVID-19 Pandemic Could Speed Up Central Bank Crypto Adoption

Ursprünglich erschienen auf: https://thebitcoinnews.com/covid-19-pandemic-could-speed-up-central-bank-crypto-adoption/

The COVID-19 pandemic will bring the end of cash and speed up the adoption of digital banking services, including central bank crypto, according to Edwin Bautista, CEO of UnionBank.

Going Digital Is the Right Approach Amid Pandemic
In an interview with Euromoney, the head of UnionBank, the Philippines’ ninth-largest bank, said that this might be the beginning of the end of hard cash, at least for the Philippines, a country whose lockdown measures are challenging for the people living in over 2,000 islands. This is also difficult for the country’s central bank, which has to improve its ability to deliver banknotes to banks and ATMs dispersed across the islands. The most reasonable option is to bet on the digitization of the financial system to the point where people can use digital money for the day to day needs.
Bautista anticipates that ultimately the banks will be forced to test and issue digital cash and maybe even crypto. He said:
“One key realization here is that the longer the disruption, the more tenuous the traditional cash supply chain becomes. Thus I expect that banks will be more open to testing, developing and deploying digital cash and currencies, QR codes and maybe even crypto currencies and digital tokens.”
Bautista is proud that UnionBank is already among the most digitally advanced bank in the region. The bank launched several offsite command-and-control systems for its digital system and asked all non-frontline employees to work from home. Thus, 95% of the bank’s branches are currently open even though 75% of the staff is working remotely.
Last month, Union opened 7,000 new accounts that are fully digital, while 20,000 clients downloaded its digital app during the month. Last week, the company’s board members held their first fully digital meeting.
As for Filipino consumers, many of them turned to online banking given the current conditions.
Central Banks Might Speed Up Adoption of Central Bank Crypto
There is an increase of cash money even though it’s not clear whether they represent a real risk. In Singapore, the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), which acts as the central bank and the main financial regulator, is encouraging the public to use online and contactless payments like crypto and wash the hands after touching cash.
Ultimately, central banks around the world could turn to blockchain-powered currencies or crypto. Earlier this year, Bitcoinist reported that several major central banks formed a group to test central bank crypto assets(CBDCs).
Do you think the world will turn cashless and move to crypto soon? Share your expectations in the comments section!

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Coinbase Invests Over $1 Million into DeFi Sites

Ursprünglich erschienen auf: https://cryptocurrencynews.com/coinbase-invests-more-defi-sites/?utm_campaign=rss__ccn&utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss

One of the major reasons behind the rapid development of the cryptocurrency space is the presence of crypto exchanges, and Coinbase is one of the most influential exchanges in the world. On Wednesday, the company further strengthened its bets in the decentralized finance (DeFi) applications space by announcing a fresh round of investments.

Major Investment

Coinbase announced that it has decided to invest a total of $1.1 million in two separate projects through its USDC Bootstrap Fund. This is a major development for the DeFi space and for the crypto space at large. It remains to …

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Bitcoin.com Fires 50% of Staff Ahead of BCH Halving

Ursprünglich erschienen auf: https://thebitcoinnews.com/bitcoin-com-fires-50-of-staff-ahead-of-bch-halving/

It’s tough times ahead for BCH as Bitcoin.com prepares to work on a skeleton team. Just five days before the halving, the platform has allegedly fired half of its staff.

Bitcoin.com Lays Off 50% of Workforce
There’s been a ton of speculation leading up to the Bitcoin Halving over what will happen if the price doesn’t recover. In fact, after the savage sell-off last month that hammered all markets, the Bitcoin network adjusted its mining difficulty from 16.55TN to 13.91TN on March 26.
Bitcoinist reported last week that many miners began to move away from Bitcoin Cash to mine BTC instead. It seems that the miner capitulation from its network may have affected BCH badly.
Its price may be following a similar recovery right now in line with the leading cryptocurrency, but its creators and advocates aren’t sending out very bullish signs.
Tech professional network Candor compiled a list of companies that are either freezing hiring due to the coronavirus or that have actively laid off staff. According to its findings, not only is Bitcoin.com freezing on hiring but it has actually axed half its team.

Tough times for CEO of $BCH, @rogerkver.CEO of Bitcoincom left, they’re going for a “leaner” approach but according to a report on https://t.co/Sh1m9AaQIB they’ve fired 50% of the staff.Lets hope that he is forced to sell the bitcoin domain that he’s using to scam people soon. pic.twitter.com/CLK0HdRz5l
— WhalePanda (@WhalePanda) April 3, 2020

Bitcoinist was able to reach out and speak to sources familiar with the matter. They confirmed that the numbers sounded accurate.
Work in the Time of Coronavirus
It should be noted that Bitcoin.com isn’t the only company to be trimming costs. Bitfury is apparently also letting employees go and Ripple has currently imposed a hiring freeze.
Drastic times call for drastic measures. However, a downscaling of such magnitude doesn’t bode well for any company–not least one that is a protocol as well. Bitcoin Cash may be bigger than Bitcoin.com and larger than Roger Ver. But with miners already jumping ship before the BCH halving and such grim news to come out of this camp, the future of BCH looks a little uncertain.
What do you make of the Bitcoin.com lay-offs? Add your thoughts below!

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A REMINDER: The future and potential of Bitcoin, Cryptocurrency and Blockchain Technology

Ursprünglich erschienen auf: https://www.reddit.com/r/CryptoCurrency/comments/fueg4v/a_reminder_the_future_and_potential_of_bitcoin/

Bitcoin and cryptocurrency solves myriad problems in traditional finance . It allows person to person transactions without a middleman. Many of these transactions have nominal fees, some have near zero fees. cryptocurrency also allows anyone to become an investor , from all walks of life. In order to invest in traditional stocks there are numerous bottlenecks for everyday the man or woman . Cryptocurrency does not discriminate . It doesn’t care if you are rich or poor , or what country you are from. Everyone has a chance to invest in something they believe in and to make their situation better.

In my humble opinion , within the next 10 years cryptocurrency will be used worldwide by more than 25% of people on a daily basis for transactions , day to day or online . I believe that in Asia in particular, cryptocurrencies will catch on and be used mainstream for transactions and micro transactions before the rest of the world. In the next several years, a handful of cryptocurrencies will become the Coca-Cola and Pepsi of the ecosystem and will dominate the landscape , but bitcoin will always be #1 due to it’s first-mover advantage, it’s security, and it’s history. It is the gold standard that all other coins will be measured in.

Any nascent technology , that is exciting, has enormous potential , yet is widely misunderstood the market is going to be volatile. People are still determining its value . The media and huge powerful players that see the potential have a huge influence and incentive to make this market hyper volatile for a plethora of reasons. But, eventually, on a long enough timeline, I foresee, each satoshi being valued at 1 cent, which would mean 1 bitcoin is worth $1 million dollars. Whether, it is in 10 years, in 20 years, or more, I don’t know, but I truly believe at some point in our lifetimes this scenario is entirely possible.

In fact, on a long enough timeline, (20–30 years) fiat money could potentially fall by the wayside, with globalization. Think of Records>8-tracks>tapes>CDs>MP3s> now streaming . You have smart cars , smart homes , smart phones , this is smart money .

Although paper money would not be done away with completely and would still be accepted , this would simply be a glorified “update “ of our monetary system like an Apple iPhone update. With our current system how can you verify each dollar bill that is in your bank account and where it goes and if it’s really there? It’s just a number in your bank account due to our debt based banking system , one that can technically be erased , at any moment .

Think about it, if stuff really hit the fan, whether it be a major financial crisis (even worse than now, like global banks failing), war (God forbid), or something else, which significantly rendered many fiat currencies worthless or at least destabilized them significantly, what would governments all over the world look to use as a replacement, whether temporary or not? Not gold, because it is an impractical means of transaction on a mass scale, is heavy, and is essentially indivisible in real time. No, they would use bitcoin, which is the de facto global currency of the twenty-first century. You can’t argue that it’s not, it’s quite obvious at this point.

It is interesting to look at the front cover of The Economist from 1988, 20 years later, entitled "Get Ready for a World Currency".

We are on the brink of something truly momentous. Most of the world still does not know the power of blockchain technology, and how it can change everything. Blockchain is the next phase of the technological revolution, and as we know with technology, once a superior more efficient system, product, or service is created, the world does not take a step back. We advance. Blockchain technology is here to stay and it’s not going anywhere, in fact, it is just getting started.

This revolution will surprise everyone .

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