On this week’s Unhashed Podcast: Bryan upsets Charles Hoskinson with our shitcoin toilet paper, scammers are sending fake replacement devices to Ledger customers, China bans Bitcoin mining for real this time, Brock Pierce pretends to make headlines as the “official Bitcoin ambassador”, South Korea tightens up exchange regulations, and Somsen gets faced with last week’s Lightning round dilemma as he enters the grocery store without a mask!
Charles Hoskinson himself had something to say about our Toilet Paper while on @lexfridman’s Podcast. From the Founder and CEO of Cardano, “I was in Miami at a conference there, I had a toilet paper roll thrown at me that had shitcoin written on it”.
Scammers are sending fake replacement devices to Ledger customers exposed in a recent data breach that are used to steal cryptocurrency wallets. In a post on Reddit, a Ledger user shared a devious scam after receiving what looks like a Ledger Nano X device in the mail. The device came in an authentic looking packaging, with a poorly written letter explaining that the device was sent to replace their existing one as their customer information was leaked online on the RaidForum hacking forum.
China Bans Bitcoin (mining)! For real this time. From the Global Times (so you know its true), “Many Bitcoin mines in Southwest China’s Sichuan Province – one of China’s largest cryptocurrency mining bases – were closed as of Sunday, according to after local authorities ordered a halt to mining in the region on Friday amid an intensified nationwide crackdown against cryptocurrency mining. The ban also means that more than 90 percent of China’s Bitcoin mining capacity is estimated to be shut down, at least for the short term, as regulators in other key mining hubs in China’s north and southwest regions have taken similar harsh steps.” However, this time, it seems like there is some truth to the articles/rumors, as hash power has taken a dive (per estimated difficulty adjustments) over the last month. Blocktimes over the last 2 days have hit ~13.9 mins. Is this good for bitcoin?
Elsewhere in China, as reported by ABCnews, “China’s biggest banks promised Monday to refuse to help customers trade Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies after the central bank said executives were told to step up enforcement of a government ban. Regulators appear to worry that despite the 2013 ban on Chinese banks and other institutions handling cryptocurrencies, the state-run financial system might be indirectly exposed to risks. Beijing also worries users might evade efforts to monitor and control the financial system. The four major state-owned commercial banks and payment service Alipay promised to step up monitoring of customers and block use of their accounts to buy or trade crypto-currencies.” – https://abcnews.go.com/Business/wireStory/chinese-banks-promise-step-cryptocurrency-ban-78398255
Brock Pierce made “headlines” in more ways than one over the last week. He posted on this twitter feed that he was part of the “ official delegation of Bitcoin ambassadors” going to El Salvadore to meet with the president. Brock was rightfully taken to task for declaring there was any “official” bitcoin ambassadors. To make matters worse, Brock posted a screenshot of an article (including his photo above the fold on the front page) in the paper Noticia, however, internet sleuths were quick to point out that the article did not appear in either the print or digital version of the actual paper. Further sleuthing from Kim [email protected] revealed that a “new edition” was posted online several days after the delegation hit the ground and Brock posted the initial photo.
Bitcoin Magazine writes: “The Lightning Network, a Bitcoin Layer 2 scaling solution proposed in 2015 by Joseph Poon and Thaddeus Dryja, has grown a lot in just a few years. Now, the network has achieved a significant milestone of housing more than 1,500 BTC in its channels, roughly $56.55 million. Perhaps the most recent of the Lightning Network’s advancements toward wider adoption relates to bitcoin exchanges adding support for the protocol. Bitfinex was the first major one to do so, allowing its users to withdraw funds directly to Lightning in 2019. Others have since followed, including Hodl Hodl, River Financial and OKEx, also providing the benefits of instant deposits/withdrawals and relatively low fees to their users”. https://bitcoinmagazine.com/technical/lightning-network-over-1500-btc
Coindesk writes: “South Korea’s banks are reassessing their partnerships with domestic crypto exchanges to determine whether they’ll continue their current contracts. Currently, only four exchanges – Bithumb, Upbit, Coinone and Korbit – have established partnerships with banks. These are often referred to as the “Big 4.” According to South Korea’s Financial Transactions Reports Act (FTRA), crypto exchanges are required to register with financial authorities by Sept. 24 of this year. After the registration deadline, exchanges will fall under the FSC’s regulatory net and be subject to regular scrutiny. The banks associated with them will also be monitored to ensure that know-your-customer (KYC) and anti-money laundering (AML) protocols are being enforced. Upbit, the largest exchange in South Korea by volume, recently delisted 24 tokens and removed the fiat on-ramps for five tokens. Many view this move as an attempt by Upbit to remove any potential risk in its upcoming assessment by K Bank.” – https://www.coindesk.com/south-korea-banks-review-partnerships-crypto-exchange