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Finally, the cryptocurrency market has surpassed $400 billion in valuation after such a long correction and since 10th February, the market has been recovering really fast; however, it’s still not ready to instigate strong rallies.

Speedy Recovery:

At this time, all cryptocurrencies in the market have the market valuation of $418 billion as a whole, and the price of Ethereum has leaped over $840, whereas the price of bitcoin has hit $8,525. The price of native cryptocurrency of the Ethereum network “Ether” fell to $820 recently and is now following the same trend as bitcoin over the past few weeks.

Generally, we can say that the whole market has been following the trend of major cryptocurrencies, which includes both Bitcoin and Ethereum because in times of extreme instability, the cryptocurrencies that have huge market caps tend to work as stand-by currencies of the market.

In the past corrections, the cryptocurrency market recovered really fast because the casual investors and newcomers still had hope that the market would recover within a short period of time. This correction was quite different from the previous ones and the media also reported many stories that focused only on the investors who lost their money, rather than the positive developments within the cryptocurrency sector. South Korea continued to show sanguinity throughout 2017 however, it was still hit with a bear market recently due to the negative press.

As the cryptocurrency market has got negative press all around it, even with the fervent approach of regulators, as it’s been seen in US CFTC (Commodities and Futures Trading Commission) and US SEC (Securities and Exchange Commission) congress hearing, few more weeks will be still required for the market to recuperate and the major cryptocurrencies like Ripple, Ethereum, and Bitcoin to regain their absolute thresholds at $10,000, $1,000, $1 individually.

Market Will Soon Bounce Back:

According to the CEO of Pantera Capital, Dan Morehead, within few weeks, the cryptocurrency market could start assembling. He added, he’s certainly aware that it’s a very speculative market and is volatile on the downside for the past 52 days. He thinks that in a couple of weeks, everything will get back to normal and the price of bitcoin will start to grow back once again.

Morehead highlighted that bitcoin is still “under-owned” by the retail traders and if the institutional investors adopt the asset class, the market could grow really quickly.

 

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Bitcoin Hacked 2017, Who To Blame?

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Bitcoin trading was started since 2010 which is the source of Bitcoin’s universal myths or discussions. When a Bitcoin exchanged gets hacked, financial media considers this hack a result of the flaws of cryptocurrencies. Until now, Bitcoin protocol has never been hacked. Due to its next level encryption, hackers do not attack Bitcoin directly. Instead, they manipulate the weaknesses of Bitcoin exchanges.

Are Bitcoin Exchanges Vulnerable To Hacking?

According to the report of the U.S Department of Homeland Security, one-third of Bitcoin exchanges were hacked between 2010-2015.

A South Korean exchange ‘Bithumb’ was hacked last month with 30,000 customer’s data on it. The hackers were able to steal $1million worth of bitcoins. As a result, the price of Bitcoin dropped about 3.5% during the following two days of the event.

Bithumb revealed that employee’s computers which provide the access to customer’s data were targeted during the attack.

In August 2016, Hackers successfully took 120,000 Bitcoins, worth $65million from Bitfinex exchange. In that case “Hot wallet” feature was the weak link. These frequent Bitcoin exchange hacks are no doubt concerning, but this should not be a reason to dismiss Bitcoin usage.

For example, if a diamond jewelry shop is successfully robbed, it’s not the diamonds’ fault, rather the security management that was hired by the owner. Same is the case with the Bitcoin code users.

Why Has Bitcoin Itself Never Been Hacked?  

Bitcoin codes use a network security protocol known as SHA-256. SHA: Secure Hash Algorithm. This is the prime reason why Bitcoin is known as a cryptocurrency. SHA-256 is widely used by the government and financial sector of the Bitcoin and was designed by the National Security Agency.

Crypto experts and programmers believe that SHA-256 is unbreakable by the currently available technology. Chris Wilmer, founder of Blockchain-Focused said, “Bitcoin itself, and most of the other cryptocurrencies, have never been hacked or even really had any downtime.”

Due to the fact that Bitcoin uses SHA-256, and that its transactions are broadcasted to the network for confirmation, Bitcoin is the securest form of currency ever created.

Just think about it, if you have fiat money and it gets stolen or snatched by someone, it becomes incredibly difficult to trace it. In addition, a stolen bag exposes your data including bank’s check book, debit/credit card to untrusted parties and takes a whole lot of months to resolve the issue.

Besides, credit/debit is an old fashioned payment system. Considering the tools available these days, hackers could get an easy approach to this old form of digital money.

Today, the Credit card breaches have become a daily routine. The hits at Target Corp. (NYSE: TGT) and (NYSE: HD) occurred a couple years ago. Neiman Marcus and Wendy’s Co. (Nasdaq: WEN) breach is another example which just happened in 2016. The most recent ones are Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc. (NYSE: CMG), Arby’s Restaurant Group, and Kmart Corp, which happened in 2017.

Whereas, bitcoins are safe at your Bitcoin exchanges and provide maximum security against breaches. Don’t let one or two incidents define the whole currency and start your Bitcoin venture right now!

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Bitcoin vs. Ethereum- 2017 Edition

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There are various warriors out there fighting for the cryptocurrency crown, but the lead runners are Bitcoin and Ethereum and both have serious backing. Due to the increase in competition, it is important for investors to understand the similarities and differences between the two.

What is Bitcoin

Bitcoin is the first form of digital currency which was created by Satoshi Nakamoto. Since everything is shown on the public ledger, the blockchain, you can be confident that the transaction is legitimate. Bitcoin offers lower transaction fees than traditional online payment mechanisms and has no interference of banks. Also, it is used to buy things electronically. In that sense, it’s like conventional dollars, euros, or yen, which are also trading digitally at the moment.

What is Ethereum

Ethereum is meant to be much more than a payment system. It is also based on blockchain technology and was introduced to supplement decentralized applications.

It even features smart contracts and the Ethereum Virtual Machine. Firstly, Ethereum’s smart contracts allow contract negotiation and facilitation using an app which provides a decentralized way to verify and enforce them. It is powered by the Ethereum cryptocurrency Ether, which is held in the Ethereum wallet. Their aim is to provide greater security than normal contracts and bring down the associated cost. Also, the Ethereum Virtual Machine helps to create blockchain applications in a much easier and efficient way, enabling people to run any program.

Bitcoin vs. Ethereum:

In Bitcoin blockchain, miners mine to earn bitcoins and two-thirds of all available bitcoins have already been mined. The reward for mining halves about every four years and it’s current value is at 12.5 bitcoins with average block time as 10 minutes. Due to this block time, Bitcoin is suffering from slow transaction speeds thus, vendors and purchasers are choosing to shift.

On the other hand, Ethereum rewards its miners with ethers, which is a kind of token that fuels the network. You earn 5 ethers given for each block and unlike Bitcoin, Ethereum’s block time is 12 seconds. Ethereum’s GHOST protocol enables quick block time. The faster the block time, the quicker the confirmations. However, there are also more orphaned blocks. Ethereum gives application developers the opportunity to create all sorts of applications that carry out their own set of operations, which have never been seen before. While smart contracts are set up to be unchanging and trustworthy, they are still ultimately a creation of humans who are capable of error.

Another major difference is the supply of Bitcoin, which is exceedingly low, with just 16.24 million left from 21 million. Whereas, Ethereum has over 89,752,192 coins currently existing. This is an advantage for Ethereum since Bitcoin might be left behind due to its low supply.

Furthermore, both Ethereum and bitcoin use different hashing algorithms. While Bitcoin uses SHA-256 algorithm that produces a number in hexadecimal format, Ethereum uses Ethash algorithm.

Here’s a table representing all the differences between Bitcoin and Ethereum:

 

The future of Bitcoin and Ether

As we glance into the future, it’s hard to get a grip on who exactly is going to be on top of the chain. Over the years, Bitcoin has become more and more popular, there has been a steady increase in volume since the beginning of 2017. It now represents a technological breakthrough that has the potential to change the way the world banks. Now standing on $2209, for the first time in history, surpassing even the price of gold.

However, as high as Bitcoin pushes, it is going to drag Ethereum with it as well, which is now trading at $175. While the future of Ether is more uncertain than the future of Bitcoin, the potential gains are also much greater.

Both digital currencies continue to push all-time highs for almost every available metric and show no or very little signs of slowing down.

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Longfin Stock Value Drops Below 30% After SEC Announces Investigation

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After the US SEC (Securities and Exchanges Commission) announced that it’s starting an investigation, the stock value of Longfin (fintech firm) has dropped below 30%.

According to a report, on 2nd April, Longfin divulged the investigation in a public 10-K filing to the Securities and Exchanges Commission. Longfin is among the NASDAQ-listed fintech companies and its market cap shot-up above 1,000 percent in last December, within only 2-days.

Investigation By SEC

On 5th March, Longfin was informed by the Division of Enforcement of SEC that they will be investigating transactions in the company’s shares and also demanded the documents related to its IPO and acquisition of Ziddu.com. Ziddu.com is a firm that focuses on smart contracts and micro-lending via blockchain technology.

In the 10-K filing, Longfin showed that its aim is to cooperate with the SEC investigations. The document says:

“We are in the process of responding to this document request and will cooperate with the SEC in connection with its investigation. While the SEC is trying to determine whether there have been any violations of the federal securities laws, the investigation does not mean that the SEC has concluded that anyone has violated the law.”

What does Venkat Meenavalli have to say about it?

CEO of Longfin, Venkat Meenavalli also acknowledged this gigantic spike in stock value last December, as he stated:

“This market cap is not justified. I valued my IPO pricing at $5.” He also added:

“We are a profitable company… We have nothing to do with this euphoric mania.”

The stock value plunged really quick after an adverse tweet was posted by a well-known short-seller, Andrew Left’s Citron Research and news that the FTSE Russell was considering to eradicate Longfin from its benchmark Russell indexes due to inadequate free-floating shares.

As for the negative view of Citron, Meenavalli said:

“We are going to take legal action after we file the 10-K” and added, “The company is a profitable company, making revenue.”

Also, at the beginning of this year, the SEC reported that it’s going to start an investigation on companies that are using public enthusiasm and blockchain technology to deploy their stock prices.

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A Guide on Accepting Bitcoin Donations Through Your Blog/Website

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Bitcoin is a relatively new digital currency which is used in making online transactions between two individuals. The currency is considered to be the most efficient and safest form of online payments. (Learn how to pay with Bitcoin online)

Bitcoin can be used as a method of payment on several platforms but is most popular on the gambling websites.

Bitcoin functions not only in the form of payments but you can also make earnings through Bitcoin donations if you run a website/blog.

Nonetheless, when it comes Bitcoin donations, the most frequently asked question is: “How to accept Bitcoin donations” because accepting Bitcoin website donations is becoming more troublesome as the number of individuals shifting to online payment methods keeps on growing each day.

How to Accept Bitcoin Donations?

You can accept Bitcoin donations in the form of your local currency, such as USD, Euro, etc. The donations are similar to those of fiat currency. The only difference is that Bitcoin only exists virtually, while the traditional currency can be directly sent to your bank account or handed to you in person.

Currently, there are only 12 million bitcoins in circulation, most of which are held by the businessmen.

Also, there are plenty of efficient tools that convert traditional payments into Bitcoin. For this, all you require is a Bitcoin extension.

What Are the Methods in Which You Can Accept Bitcoin?

Normally, there are three ways to accept Bitcoin donations. The methods are discussed below briefly.

  1. You can make/accept variable amounts of donations using an image link. The link supports a specific donation and a Bitcoin blog link. Then you will need to place a Bitcoin QR code on your website which will allow users to make donations using their smartphones. To ensure a Bitcoin donation, you must maintain a secure environment.
  1. An alternate option to accept Bitcoin donations on your site is a donation counter. The counter helps your visitors how many donations you have received so far as part of the campaign. The counter can also be used to indicate a time frame and a standard amount of the donations a user might wish to place.
  1. Another way to accept Bitcoin donations is to add payment buttons on your site. A visitor who clicks on the payment button is taken to an interface which can be controlled until the bitcoin payment is received.

Last Word:

Bitcoin donations must take place under a safe environment, so make sure your site is safe while trying to make a Bitcoin transaction. The standard website security requires you to have complete control over all the transactions made through the website.

Bitcoin addresses are vulnerable to security threats. Lack of security could result in a donation being directed to an unwanted party.

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