• According to new research from Chainalysis, a digital forensics firm that studies the bitcoin blockchain, 3.79 million bitcoins are already gone for good based on a high estimate—and 2.78 million based on a low one.
  • While others have speculated about the number of lost bitcoins, the Chainalysis findings are significant because they rely on a detailed empirical analysis of the blockchain, where all bitcoin transactions are recorded.
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  • North Korean engagement with bitcoin and cryptocurrency appears to be ever growing, with recent reports indicating that university students are now able to access courses on cryptocurrency in the Hermit Kingdom.
  • Despite mounting accusations that the North Korean administration has been actively stealing and mining bitcoins, the existence of the course is being cited as “the first hard evidence” of North Korea’s increasing fascination with cryptocurrency by media.
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  • The amount of energy used by computers “mining” bitcoin so far this year is greater than the annual usage of almost 160 countries, according to new research.
  • Research by energy tariff comparison service PowerCompare.co.uk shows that the amount of energy expended mining bitcoin globally has already exceeded the amount used on average by Ireland and most African nations.
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  • Swissquote Bank, an online banking service, has launched a bitcoin exchange-traded certificate that it claims will curb the cryptocurrency’s volatility.
  • Swissquote said in a statement: “Our strategy is focused on reducing volatility by increasing the amount of cash held during periods of uncertainty and downturns.
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  • The European Parliament has issued a report on odometer tampering which suggests that blockchain technology could be an effective means of combating the practice.
  • In November 2017, the Structural and Cohesion Policies Department (aka Policy Department B) of European Parliament’s Directorate-General for Internal Policies concluded a report on odometer tampering.
  • The document included blockchain technology in a list of possible remedies to the problem.
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  • Last week it emerged that a fake BTG wallet which had been promoted on the bitcoin gold website was fraudulent.
  • The team’s developers removed “mybtgwallet” once the scam came to light, but not before scores of innocent users had been duped.
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  • An obscure provision tucked into a defense spending bill could serve as a springboard for blockchain adoption across U.S. government agencies.
  • It authorizes agencies to use the working capital funds for modernization projects that fall into one of three buckets: cybersecurity, migrating legacy systems to the cloud and “other innovative platforms and technologies.”
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  • Exchange operator Nasdaq announced yesterday that it is developing an electronic shareholder voting system based on blockchain technology for the South African capital markets.
  • To be delivered to South African central securities depository Strate, Nasdaq’s blockchain solution aims to bring greater voting efficiencies and shareholder participation by offering a “secure and user-friendly” tool for remote participation, a press release says.
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  • This week the largest bitcoin exchange by volume in Europe, Bitstamp, decided to begin listing bitcoin cash between its popular currency pairs traded on the platform.
  • Right now there are 19 BCH wallets, 5 full node clients, and lots of other services and merchants who now accept bitcoin cash.
  • The Bitcoin Cash network has seen 26,730 blocks mined since the first hard fork on August 1, 2017.
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  • Tether, the company behind a dollar-pegged cryptocurrency widely used in the market’s exchange trade, is claiming that its systems have been hacked and that $30 million worth of its tokens have been stolen.
  • In a post on the project’s website (which has since been removed), Tether blamed a “malicious action by an external attacker” for the theft of $30,950,010 USDT yesterday.
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  • It’s possible bitcoin’s Lightning Network will fall short of its lofty ambition – at least, that’s what a group of researchers are arguing.
  • By proposing to push transactions off of the bitcoin blockchain, but keeping strong cryptographic guarantees intact, it’s believed by many developers to be the best way to increase the number of transactions the network can handle.
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  • The Bank of India (SBI), a -operated financial entity, announced it will explore blockchain technology as it can be applied to know-your-customer (KYC) protocols and EDCCs in a pair of beta programs scheduled to launch next month.
  • SBI is a founding member of BankChain, a FinTech alliance focused on the advancement of business logic-ready blockchain technology that encompasses 27 banks.
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  • The Smart Dubai Office (SDO) has won an award for its Dubai Blockchain Strategy initiative.
  • Dubai’s Blockchain Strategy was set up to move all of the government’s transactions online using blockchain tech by the year 2020.
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  • A group of major financial firms including JPMorgan Chase and Goldman Sachs has trialed the exchange of equity swaps over a distributed ledger (DLT) system.
  • By carrying out trades across a network where all parties use the same valuation data and share the same books, in theory, payments can be processed nearly instantaneously and disputes over transactions will be less likely.
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  • Developers who fork a cryptocurrency have no real monetary advantage, as they only implement a change to the protocol.
  • Saturating the market with different versions of Bitcoin is confusing to users and discredits the claim that there are a limited number of Bitcoins–since you can always fork it and double the supply.
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  • One space ripe for change is the freight and logistics industry, which commands roughly $8 trillion in annual revenues (2015), and is expected to reach a volume of over $15.5 trillion by 2023.
  • While clearly a massive and critical component of the modern world, the freight industry is still lagging years behind in terms of technological progress and operational productivity.
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  • A new European Commission report lays out some of the ways that the education sector can benefit from incorporating blockchain technology.
  • In November 2017, the Human Capital and Employment unit of the European Commission’s (EC) Joint Research Centre issued a report detailing possible blockchain use cases, which it describes as “still in their infancy,” in the education sector.
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  • Fallen figure Mark Karpeles wants to resurrect Mt Gox, which collapsed in 2014 with the loss of 850,000 bitcoins.
  • Karpeles may or may not be in line for a bumper payday, but whatever the outcome of the Mt Gox bankruptcy case, the Frenchman’s name will cause creditors to shudder forevermore.
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  • Entitled “Reclaiming of ether in common classes of stuck accounts,” EIP 156 has received renewed attention after more than 500,000 ether was frozen due to a bug in a library contract used by cryptocurrency wallet company Parity.
  • In a rationale section, Buterin explained that EIP 156 would allow users to withdraw assets from contracts that are mistakenly created without code.
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  • Hyosung have gotten in on the act by launching bitcoin ATM support.
  • Soon, customers of the firm’s ATM machines will be able to buy bitcoin at the push of a button.
  • Because the feature will be added to ATMs as a software upgrade, bitcoin compatibility should be rolled out quickly.
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