Blockchain 

Crypto-Ransomware Remains Most Prominent Cyber Attack

The European Union Agency for Law Enforcement Cooperation (Europol) released its 2019 Internet Organized Crime Threat Assessment (IOCTA) report. Crypto exchanges continue to be a magnet for hackers On Oct. 9, Europol presented its IOCTA report of the cybercrime threat landscape. According to the EU-focused law-enforcement organization, cybercrime must be approached in a holistic sense, saying: “Countering cybercrime is as much about its present forms as it is about future projections. New threats do not only arise from new technologies but, as is often demonstrated, come from known vulnerabilities in…

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Bitcoin 

German Programmer ‘Hacks Back’ After Bitcoin Ransomware Attack

German programmer Tobias Frömel (aka “battleck”) has “hacked back” the perpetrators of the Muhstik ransomware who forced him to pay 0.09 Bitcoin (BTC) to recover access to his files. In a Bleeping Computer forum post on Oct. 7, Frömel revealed that he had hacked the attackers’ database, sharing almost 3,000 decryption keys and a free decryptor with fellow victims. An illegal but sweet revenge Bleeping Computer previously reported that publicly exposed QNAP NAS devices have been targeted by ransomware dubbed Muhstik. The attackers extorted a fixed “fee” of 0.09 Bitcoin…

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Bitcoin 

Anti-51% Attack Measures Always Imply Centralization

Bitcoin Core developer Greg Maxwell has criticized the “attractive mystery” that fear of a 51% attack on Bitcoin (BTC) entails, arguing that it betrays a fundamental lack of understanding about the cryptocurrency. In a Reddit post published on Oct. 5, Maxwell argued that any mechanism cooked up to mitigate the threat of a 51% attack always implies centralization and represents a far greater threat to Bitcoin’s integrity. Bitcoin’s fundamental focus As Cointelegraph reported previously , a 51% attack can occur on blockchains that use a proof-of-work (PoW) algorithm and essentially…

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Bitcoin 

Bitcoin Futures Platform ‘SAFU’ After Attack False Alarm

The CEO of cryptocurrency exchange Binance has dispelled fears a bad actor had attacked its newly-launched Bitcoin futures platform. Technical error crashed Bitcoin price In a series of tweets on Sept. 16, Changpeng Zhao, also known as CZ, initially warned that the exchange’s futures were under attack from one of its own market makers.  The perpetrator allegedly crashed the BTC/USD order book from $10,324 to $10,024, in what Zhao said was the second such attempt at an attack.  Binance launched its futures platform in invite-only mode following a user testing period…

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Bitcoin 

Understanding Litecoin’s Dusting Attack: What Happened and Why

On Aug. 10, the Binance and Litecoin (LTC) community came to life as news of a potential “dusting attack” was announced through the official Binance Twitter account. In the tweet, the team explained that around 50 Binance Litecoin addresses received a fractional amount (0.00000546) of Litecoin, which the exchange’s security team identified as a part of large-scale dusting attack.  Related: Litecoin Halving Aftermath: LTC Price, Hash Rate, Community Reaction James Jager, project lead at Binance Academy and the person who first identified the attack, discussed the event with Cointelegraph: “It…

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Blockchain 

Coinbase Says It Prevented a Crafty Phishing Attack to Exfiltrate Keys

The security team at cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase has revealed how it countered a sophisticated phishing attack aiming to exfiltrate private keys and passwords.  In a blog post published on Aug. 8, the exchange outlined its discovery and reporting of the incident, which involved the exploitation of two 0-day vulnerabilities on Mozilla’s web browser Firefox. A “highly-targeted and thought-out” attack The first steps of the phishing scam, Coinbase reveals, date back to late May of this year, when over a dozen exchange employees received an email from an innocuous-seeming University of…

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Blockchain 

Spam Attack? Bitcoin Average Block Size Suddenly Spikes to Over 3MB

Blockchain validation platform VeriBlock produced almost 25% of on-chain Bitcoin (BTC) transactions in 24 hours July 14, the company confirmed on social media. VeriBlock, which uses its own ‘Proof-of-Proof’ protocol to validate blockchains using Bitcoin’s computing power, launched its mainnet implementation in March.  The service allows miners to compete for block rewards on altcoin blockchains, while tapping into Bitcoin’s superior levels of security due to the computing power sustaining its Proof-of-Work algorithm.  The roughly one-quarter figure signalled by VeriBlock this weekend equates to around 68,000 transactions.  Veriblock had previously generated…

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Blockchain 

Ethereum-Based Synthetic Asset Platform Loses Over 37M Tokens in Oracle Attack

The Ethereum-based synthetic asset issuance platform Synthetix has lost over 37 million synthetic ETH (sETH) in an oracle attack, according to a report by The Block on June 24. While the amount of sETH in question is known to be over 37 million, the price of this loss in U.S. dollars is reportedly unknown due to its relative illiquidity on secondary markets. Synthetix allows users to mint and trade synthetic currencies peer-to-peer (P2P) on the Ethereum blockchain. One such synthetic currency is the token sETH, which apparently tracks the price…

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Blockchain 

McAfee Trading Platform Suffers DOS Attack Upon Launch

Cryptocurrency enthusiast John McAfee’s crypto trading platform was immediately targeted by hackers with a denial of service (DOS) attack following its launch, according to an official Twitter post from McAfee on June 12. According to the post, the web servers for the “McAfeeMagic” trading platform, were hit with a cloaked High Orbit Ion Cannon (HOIC) DOS attack. Cybersecurity website Imperva describes an HOIC DOS attack as stressing a network by “flooding target systems with junk HTTP GET and POST requests.” However, McAffee tweeted the same day that the website was…

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Blockchain 

Two Miners Purportedly Execute 51% Attack on Bitcoin Cash Blockchain

Two miners have reportedly executed a 51% attack on the bitcoin cash (BCH) blockchain, according to tweets by Cryptoconomy Podcast host Guy Swann on May 24. A 51% attack occurs when someone controls the majority of mining power on a Proof-of-Work blockchain network. This means that the majority block verifier can prevent other users from mining and reverse transactions. While many have assumed that a 51% attack would be carried out with malicious intent, the above case happened as the two mining pools attempted to prevent an unidentified party from…

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