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Binance is the largest crypto-exchange by trading volume, however, on 7th March, its users got affected by a hack of third-party software, and as a result, unauthorized transactions were made from their user’s accounts.
Since then, Binance’s CEO, Changpeng Zhao has claimed that the exchange is working normally and the funds of users are safe as well. Many users have shown their concern and complained by using social media platforms; Twitter and Reddit, that without their permission, their altcoins had been converted into Bitcoin and most of them didn’t even logged into their accounts.
binance hacked
There were many posts on Reddit, claiming that hackers have used their bitcoins for buying VIA coins for 0.025 BTC each. Without attracting any attention, hackers managed to withdrew the bitcoins in small amounts. It’s claimed by a Reddit user, Profetu, that Binance’s administration took actions to the complaints of their users by freezing their accounts in one hour. Furthermore, the user suggested;

“The hacker accumulated VIA in advance (from Binance or other exchange and sent to Binance) then he set a huge sell order at 0.025BTC. Then using API made some account sell alts and buy VIA with that BTC, [and then withdrew] BTC.”

Another user wrote;

“Same happened to me. I had 100% USDT worth $1548. Today I logged in so I can buy some xrp, but my account balance is $200 out of $1548, and apparently I bought 5 VIA coins and exchanged my USDT to BTC while I was in the gym?”

Few traders have presented a theory that the attack was linked with compromised API keys which had been requested by Binance’s users to further use inside the range of other applications such as; chart in monitoring services and trading bots. This theory also explains how the attackers have managed to pass over the two-factor authentication. But at the same time, it fails to explain why this attack affected the users who never requested API keys.

A user asked;

“Do you use any trading bots like profittrailer or gunbot? Do you have any API opened for any kind of services?” – Bonnie_channel

Another Reddit user wrote;

“That is what I am wondering! I never gave permission for this API key to be created. That is why I think it’s an issue on [Binance’s] end”.

Later, a tweet was posted by Binance, saying that deposits and withdrawals are now in a working condition and all illegitimate trades have been rebounded. Changpeng Zhao also said that a phishing website has been used by hackers to get the login information and to divert users from the authentic Binance website.

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One thought on “Binance Hack – What Is Confusing Its Users?

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Monero Security – 3 Main Techniques Behind Monero Anonymity Explained

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Along with being accessible through networks such as Tor and I2P, Monero implements various cryptography techniques to unlock an extensive level of security and privacy:

1. Untraceable Stealth Address

As we all know, reusing the same address for bitcoin transactions is a common privacy issue of Bitcoin. Receiving or sending multiple transactions to the same address can allow anyone who knows your address to track its activity. Thus, bitcoin is not a tool that should be used on the darknet, especially for privacy purposes.

On the other hand, Monero has no such privacy concerns. Monero’s blockchain is secured in such a way that only the sender and receiver are able to identify the destination address. Only a unique cryptographic hash is provided, to each and every transaction that can be decoded by just the send or receiver to disclose the real address. These encrypted addresses are called “stealth addresses.”

Related: Bitcoin’s current price

2. Unique Separated Transaction Units

When you send XMR to any address, it arrives as several separate payment units. Basically, each unit would appear on the Monero blockchain as being transferred to its appointed and distinct stealth address. This process is applied to the sender as well as the miners when any fees are paid to them. This makes tracking of any transactions far more complicated.

3. Undetectable Ring Signature Payments

Ring Signatures is another technique that adds up to the cryptographic system behind Monero’s blockchain.

Just to be clear, similar to Bitcoin, Monero also consists of a public and private key in order to engage in buying or selling of XMR.

For example, if you are to send 18 XMR to a shop, the XMR get sub-divided into 10,5 and 3 XMR streams, these flow into distinct Monero addresses of the ship.  The private key that authorizes any 10, 5 and 3 streams sent across the network, becomes a possible signatory to the transaction. The number of possible signatories is dependent on the “mixing depth” you set. As your transaction splits into units, ring signatures guarantee that transactions can’t be stalked back to any system’s IP address.

In the end, it’s almost impossible to track or identify Monero users

These 3 techniques provide maximum privacy and prevention from roaming trackers. Monero’s code ensures the anonymity of every user and leaves barely any possibility of a linkage to take place.

Related: Read more about Altcoins

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BEST VPN FOR DARK WEB

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The Dark Web

The dark web is basically a concealed portion of the world wide web that can be accessed only using TOR or any other anonymous network such as Project Freenet. People use these mediums in order to access services, products, and content that cannot be accessible on the normal web. You can find videos, music, pictures, books and various other illegal items here. A very well-known dark web marketplace that goes by the name of Silk Road, has everything you can think of.

Related: Read more about TOR

Now, when you use TOR it is recommended that you use a VPN and route your traffic through it.  What happens is that your ISP is unable to find out if you are accessing the Dark web and even if your IP address happens to leak due to some security flaw, it is not your actual IP address but of the VPN server you are routing your connection through.

All in all, a VPN is that extra layer of security you need to avoid any feds banging on your door at 4 AM.

However, not all VPN service providers are genuine and could land you in trouble. Here are the safest options you could go for:

NordVPN:

 

 

With NordVPN, you can be assured that your anonymity remains no matter what. It does not keep any logs so there are no chances of any data leakage or exposure online. Along with this, it has a peer-to-peer friendly VPN service and you can use up to 6 devices simultaneously. Bitcoin is accepted here and NordVPN operates from the Panama.

Besides a few glitches in the performance and variations in the speed at peak hours, there aren’t many drawbacks of this.

 

Perfect Privacy:

The headquarters of Perfect Privacy’s servers are located in New Zealand. They ensure that no logs are stored to avoid any risks in the future. Forget data breaches as Perfect Privacy is ready to put its company at stake for your privacy. Also, it doesn’t require any third-party tools, which decreases any chances of issues. It even provides you server-based-Ad and malware filters to ensure you maintain a secure browsing experience.

However, one setback is that it takes quite some time to set it up initially.

 

Torguard:

Similar to a fellow VPN service provider, Torguard also operates from the United States. But they’re known to have privacy as their main aim which means they would even consider relocating if it were ever necessary. Torguard as well does not keep any logs which is essential for safe browsing of the dark web.

Also, Torguard has an impressive amount of servers located worldwide making it a tough competitor.

 

ExpressVPN:

ExpressVPN allows you to conduct any peer-to-peer activities while ensuring that no logs are kept. It’s also known for its fast downloading speed, which makes it so much easier to browse the dark web.

The only drawback is that you can use only two devices at a time and you have to separately log in to each device.

 

IPVanish:

Don’t be alarmed that IPVanish is located in the United States as this does not make it unsafe as a VPN option. Similarly, it accepts Bitcoin as well. No logs are stored and the OpenVPNsecurity protocol along with the 256-bit AES encryption allows you to browse the web without any issues.

A drawback is that only two devices can be used simultaneously.

 

The Choice is Yours:

We’ve outlined the top 5 VPN service providers that include all the specifications for safe and secure web browsing. It is your choice to experiment with whatever that seems suitable for you as the five companies mentioned above have you covered!

Let us know in the comments section below if you try any of these out. Also, check out this list of Darknet marketplaces you can visit with the help of the above-mentioned VPN service providers.

 

Story Credits: vpncomparison.org

Image Credits: vpnguru.com

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Bitcoin Market Cap Hits $52 billion for the First Time Ever

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Bitcoin investors get apprehensive as Bitcoin’s value surpasses $3000, hitting a new record within a week after the split.

According to CoinDesk.com, Bitcoin climbed to $3,360.87 on Saturday and by Sunday, it had settled down to $3,286.87 while pushing bitcoin’s market capitalization past $50 billion for the first time ever. It’s market cap now lies at $52.3 billion at press time.

The reason behind these price jumps is the launch of Bitcoin Cash, which is a new version of the cryptocurrency. While Bitcoin’s price did have a 5% drop during the initial days of the new currency, it rapidly recovered. Previously in June, Bitcoin had hit the $3000 however, it fell 20% soon after.

As expected, market volumes have increased along with the price due to the increase in trade volume within the past couple of days and by the looks of it, Bitcoin is back and better than ever.

 

bitcoin image via atlanticbase.com

rocket image via Science Learning Hub

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Coinbase Buy Bitcoin: Bitcoin Cash Launch Delays Because Of Overwhelming Demand from Buyers

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Coinbase is a secure online platform for buying, selling, storing and transferring digital currency and it’s the most popular way to buy and sell Bitcoin, Ethereum and Litecoin.

Last month, few issues have been experienced on Bitcoin’s GDAX exchange during the launch of Bitcoin cash trading. Coinbase has blamed exceptional demand from buyers for these issues. On 20th December, the firm added support for bitcoin cash, however, Coinbase moved to disable trading of its newest assets after this unexpected news.

Adam White, who’s the manager of GDAX said in a blog post that they did their best efforts for creating a fair and orderly market, however, the launch of bitcoin cash didn’t go well and they also understand why the customers are so upset. He also said that they’ll share a detailed timeline of events and other additional information about the decisions for improving the future launches.

He added, that on 3rd August 2017, it was announced that customers could withdraw their bitcoin cash (BCH) balances by the 1st January 2018. Later, the decision was deferred. After monitoring the Bitcoin Cash network, some factors were observed such as; developer support and network security. And in the end, it was concluded that the bitcoin cash met the standards of Digital Asset Framework so it could be traded on GDAX.

Coinbase buy bitcoin

According to the blog post, in the 2 minutes and 40 seconds after BCH/USD trading started, almost 4,000 orders were placed, in which 3,461 matches occurred, and trading volume got to $15.5 million. Furthermore, he added, the low cash flow also triggered the price of the cryptocurrency to leap as high as $9,500, a lot higher than listed on other exchanges.

The constant liquidity complications made the relaunch of BCH/BTC and BCH/EUR books to be postponed until the end of winter holidays, when there would be higher possibility of meeting liquidity standards that are needed to enable trading. White accepted that regardless of the firm’s best efforts to create an impartial and methodical market, the launch did not go as it was expected.

On 13th November 2017, employees were informed about the decision to support BCH trading and were overtly verboten from buying and selling BCH. All employees were also forbidden from sharing this information with anyone else outside of the Coinbase. Coinbase has also announced that it will start an inquiry if any of the employees have desecrated its insider trading rules.

It’s not the first time that price movements have seemed to anticipate changes in the exchange to list new cryptocurrencies. According to an information from Coinmarketcap, the prices of the cryptocurrency began increasing at least a day in advance. Only four assets have been listed by Coinbase on its GDAX exchange, which offers order, bitcoin cash ether, order books for bitcoin, and litecoin.

Well, the move to list bitcoin cash was different and unique, as it effectually gave all the customers of Coinbase’s GDAX exchange an amount of bitcoin cash equivalent to the amount of bitcoin they detained on the exchange at the time, when the new cryptocurrency network was formed and Coinbase has also specified that it will definitely look for relaunching bitcoin cash trading later.

 

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