Backdoor Could Allow Company To Shut Down 70% of All Bitcoin Mining Operations

Backdoor Could Allow Company To Shut Down 70% of All Bitcoin Mining Operations

An anonymous reader writes: “An anonymous security researcher has published details on a vulnerability named “Antbleed,” which the author claims is a remote backdoor affecting Bitcoin mining equipment sold by Bitmain, the largest vendor of crypto-currency mining hardware on the market,” reports Bleeping Computer. The backdoor code works by reporting mining equipment details to Bitmain servers, who can reply by instructing the customer’s equipment to shut down. Supposedly introduced as a crude DRM to control illegal equipment, the company forgot to tell anyone about it, and even ignored a user who reported it last fall. One of the Bitcoin Core developers claims that if such command would ever be sent, it could potentially brick the customer’s device for good. Bitmain is today’s most popular seller of Bitcoin mining hardware, and its products account for 70% of the entire Bitcoin mining market. If someone hijack’s the domain where this backdoor reports, he could be in the position to shut down Bitcoin mining operations all over the world, which are nothing more than the computations that verify Bitcoin transactions, effectively shutting down the entire Bitcoin ecosystem. Fortunately, there’s a way to mitigate the backdoor’s actions using local hosts files.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Bitcoin spikes after Japan says it’s a legal payment method

Bitcoin spikes after Japan says it’s a legal payment method

Bitcoin trades up 2.8% at $1,133 a coin as of 7:08 a.m. ET on Monday. The cryptocurrency’s gains come after Japan announced on Friday that bitcoin would be accepted as a legal payment method beginning on April 1, 2017.

It’s the first bit of good news for bitcoin in quite some time. Recent chatter in the market has centered around developers threatening a “hard fork” that would split the currency in two.

Additionally, the US Securities and Exchange Commission rejected two bitcoin ETFs in March, saying that it did not find the proposals “to be consistent with Section 6(b)(5) of the Exchange Act, which requires, among other things, that the rules of a national securities exchange be designed to prevent fraudulent and manipulative acts and practices and to protect investors and the public interest.”

Bitcoin has gained more than 19% so far in 2017. It has been the top-performing currency every year since 2010, except for 2014. 

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98% of Bitcoin trading volume over the past six months was in Chinese Renminbi

98% of Bitcoin trading volume over the past six months was in Chinese Renminbi

In case you were wondering why Bitcoin experienced a crazy spike recently: China’s economy is a hyperinflated bubble, poised to burst and the Chinese central bank is depreciating the Renminbi — so China’s wealthy are getting their cash out of the country as fast as they can, using any means necessary: suing themselves, spending huge whacks of cash while on vacation, and converting it to Bitcoin (this is especially urgent now that the Canadian real-estate money laundry is shutting down) — this is just the latest salvo in the Chinese capital flight story.