Coinbase Seeks Patent for Security-Enhanced Bitcoin Payment System

Software giant IBM also has several under its belt, including one for “node characterization in blockchain,” which would allow a distributed ledger to …

U.S.-based digital currency exchange Coinbase has filed a patent on a new Bitcoin payment system designed to make cryptocurrency payments safer. The new platform will provide an added layer of security for users’ keys and allow them to make Bitcoin payments directly from their digital wallets.

A segment of the patent filing states, “It may be a security concern for users that the private keys of their Bitcoin addresses may be stolen from their wallets. Existing systems do not provide a solution for maintaining security over private keys while still allowing the users to checkout [sic] on a merchant page and making payments using their wallets.”

If approved, the system would work by allowing customers to encrypt their passphrases into a master key to create an additional buffer against theft. The master key encrypts customers’ private keys and whatever transactions are made. Once a transaction is complete, the master key is deleted, ensuring no outside party can gain access to the information. A new master key is created for each transaction.

Another novel element of the system is its “freeze logic,” which would allow administrators to suspend the system and prevent transactions from occurring in the event of a theft or cyberattack. The patent reads, “At any point in time after the master key is loaded, the system can be frozen. The system can be unfrozen after it has been frozen using keys from the key ceremony. The checkout process can be carried out when the system is frozen and when the system is unfrozen. The payment process can only be carried out when the system is unfrozen and not when the system is frozen.”

Lastly, the application proposes API integration capabilities, which would enable various websites to run versions of the payment system. The API uses a specific pair of keys – one of which is stored on the corresponding website, the other on Coinbase – that must match for a transaction to be approved and completed.

This is not the first time Coinbase has filed for such a patent. The company had tried for something similar nine times in 2015 alone, leading critics to accuse the exchange of trying to build a monopoly on bitcoin services. CEO Brian Armstrong denied this, saying that the company’s goal was to keep blockchain technology away from “patent trolls.”

“One of the best ways to defend against patent trolls is to build your own portfolio of patents, and this is exactly what we are doing, along with just about every other tech company out there,” he wrote in a blog post. “It is an unfortunate game we all must play, but we didn’t invent the rules.”

The company also filed a patent in 2016 to potentially secure Bitcoin-based private keys.

In addition to Coinbase, several traditional financial institutions have filed for blockchain-based patents. Bank of America filed approximately 50 live patents in the blockchain space, more than any other venture. Software giant IBM also has several under its belt, including one for “node characterization in blockchain,” which would allow a distributed ledger to house a series of nodes characterized by specific functions.

Last year in June, delivery company UPS also filed a blockchain patent for what it calls the “autonomous services selection system and distributed transportation database.” Whenever something is delivered from one point to another, it must go through multiple networks and segments before it reaches its destination. This makes it difficult for logistics services to coordinate with one another. The patented system would generate sets of transportation data that is then stored securely on a blockchain and easily tracked to ensure logistics companies meet handling requirements appropriately.

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Weekly Roundup, August 17: Wild Ride

An article in Forbes discovered his secret desire to “walk into a convenience store, get a card and start paying a small fee to start using Bitcoin Cash.

If you like roller coasters, you’ll love cryptocurrency. On this week’s ride, guests were treated to the whole gamut of thrill factors: terrifying plunges, nauseating lows, and vertical ascents.

We’ve tried to keep our minds off the markets with thoughtful coverage, like the SEC’s evolving position on cryptocurrencies or the new Coinbase wallet. We’ve even paged through the archives to look back on last year’s headlines.

But it’s hard to cover every story, especially when your finances are going through a zero-gravity plunge followed by a high-G loop-the-loop and a sudden and unexpected brake. Don’t worry, that’s just part of the ride….we think.

While we wait to catch our breaths, here are some of the other stories you may have missed:


Volatile Fiat Declines

First Venezuela and Iran, now Turkey. Annualized inflation on the Lira is now over 100%, and the Turkish currency lost 7% of its value in a single day.

Via TradingEconomics

Experts blame the currency crisis on four years of debt-fueled economic expansion, causing prices to rise. President Erdogan, who has previously used short-term policies to appease voters, attributed the crisis to a sparking trade war with the United States.

Economists predict that the crisis may spread to the country’s trading partners, which may mean further crises down the road in Europe and Asia. Citizens of those countries might soon find themselves desperately in need of a sound, government-proof international store of value, but we can’t imagine how that would work. Perhaps Paul Krugman has some ideas.


Vitalik Fuels Debate

If you measure your age in double digits, you’ve probably avoided the catfight between the two Bitcoins. But sometimes it’s hard not to look—like when a careless reporter forces the argument into public view.

Vitalik Buterin, the Patron Saint of Ethereum, recently outed himself as a Bcash shill in the pay of Roger Ver. An article in Forbes discovered his secret desire to “walk into a convenience store, get a card and start paying a small fee to start using Bitcoin Cash.” The story quickly went viral in pro-BCH news sites, and bounced back from the BTC echo chamber.

Except for the part where it was, well, wrong. On a second listen to the audio, Vitalik was clearly naming several top cryptocurrencies. It was one of many transcription errors in the Forbes article, which has since been corrected.One would expect that to be enough—but some old-school hodlers still haven’t forgiven Vitalik for calling it “Bitcoin Cash.”

Fair enough, but it wouldn’t be the first time though. 🤷‍♂️https://t.co/Lfdqdgbp2Phttps://t.co/3yKsFuStro

— WhalePanda (@WhalePanda) August 16, 2018


Bitcoin Used For Bail

Cryptocurrencies have a new adopter: the criminal justice system. An accused hacker was ordered by a San Francisco court to post his bail in cryptocurrency, according to Palo Alto’s Daily Post.

Martin Marsich, 25, was ordered to post $750,000 in “Bitcoin or any other cryptocurrency” as a condition for his release into a halfway house. Marsich is charged with hacking into Electronic Arts, which is considered a crime outside of the PC Gaming community.

The Post reports mixed feelings from within the legal community, with some professionals skeptical and others unsurprised. “The judge could order just about anything,” US District Attorney Abraham Simmons told the Post. “What the objective is is to get the defendant to comply with an order to appear later.”

But this raises big question about the wisdom, or otherwise, of trusting a court bond officer with very technical instruments.What if the court sends your bail to a Bitcoin Cash address, or they fail to use 2FA and lose everything?


AT&T Sued For a Quarter Billion

Speaking of two-factor authentication, one investor learned the hard way that Google is the way to go. Michael Terpin is suing AT&T, his mobile service provider, after an identity theft that allowed unknown hackers to make off with $24 million in cryptocurrency.

“AT&T does not improve its protections even though it knows from numerous incidents that some of its employees actively cooperate with hackers in SIM swap frauds by giving hackers direct access to customer information and by overriding AT&T’s security procedures,” Terpin’s lawyers wrote in the 69-page complaint. Terpin is pursuing $24 million in compensation, and $200 million in punitive damages.

The theft appears to be a version of SIM swapping, in which criminals trick phone providers into porting the victims’ phone numbers to new SIM cards.

These attacks appear to be on the rise among sophisticated hackers. Last month, police arrested a 20-year old college student for SIM hijacks that stole $5 million in cryptocurrency.

The best way to avoid such hacks is by using in-device authentication, like Authy, and hardening your mobile phone accounts.

The author is invested in Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, and Ethereum.

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US States Have Begun Requiring Cryptocurrency Bonds

The popularity of digital currencies is prompting several US states to require companies engaged in cryptocurrency trading to secure surety bonds to …

The popularity of digital currencies is prompting several US states to require companies engaged in cryptocurrency trading to secure surety bonds to enhance investor protection.

With a cryptocurrency surety bond, investors are given an extra layer of protection in case they become victims of fraud or scams. Under the rules set by these states, companies engaging in digital currency transmission should be backed by surety bonds, with the amount corresponding to the volume of transactions to protect the money transmitter clients.

“Cryptocurrencies have a lot of benefits that have become answered prayers for the adherents. One is the seamless and secure transaction that it provides,”

said Greg Rynerson of Surety Bond Authority.

“Eliminating identity theft is another. And since there are no third-parties involved, you don’t have to pay for any expensive fees, or wait days for approval, or worry about your cryptocurrency being seized.”

States that require crypto surety bonds

There are currently at least five states require surety bonds for some forms of trading in cryptocurrencies, according to a recent article. These states are Connecticut, New Hampshire, New York, North Carolina, and Washington. The bonds range from $10,000 to as high as $250,000, with the actual cost of the bond running as low as one percent of the premium.

In addition to surety bonds and licensing requirements, states can require additional conditions for virtual currency traders. Some states oblige crypto traders to maintain a trust fund that is handled by a custodian, while others require digital currency exchanges to be subjected to regular third-party security auditing.

While individuals selling cryptocurrencies would not be directly affected by the surety bond requirement, traders that specialize in brokering virtual currencies can expect to see these instruments wielded by regulators with increasing frequency.

In all, digital currency surety bonds want to make sure the industry is operating in a safe and secure environment, Rynerson added.

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10 of the Weirdest Cryptocurrencies on the Market

Most mainstream cryptocurrencies include BitCoin, Ethereum, and LiteCoin. But, as has been shown, there are dozens of cryptocurrencies available …

This article details 10 of the weirdest cryptocurrencies available on the market today. This, of course, includes dogecoin.

Most mainstream cryptocurrencies include BitCoin, Ethereum, and LiteCoin.

But, as has been shown, there are dozens of cryptocurrencies available for a wide variety of uses from buying skins in video games to buying bottle openers and keychains.

What are some of the weirdest cryptocurrencies available?

1. It’s That Thing From Avatar – Unobtanium

image of Unobtanium from James Cameron's Avatar for article 10 of the Weirdest Cryptocurrency on the Market
Unobtanium from James Cameron’s Avatar | 20th Century Fox via Silverwing.cgsociety.org

You might remember the immensely successful film Avatar from 2009. The one where humans invade a planet on a mining expedition and nearly kill everyone/everything.

The expedition wanted to invade the planet because it had large deposits of the most ridiculously named resource — “unobtanium.” Well, naturally, someone went and named a cryptocurrency the same thing…kind of. This currency is called “Uno”.

The intro to their website plays through an anecdote about how gold used to be the standard. Bitcoin, in this story, represents gold. But, much like in real life, there are substances better than gold like platinum. Unobtanium is the platinum.

“It’s rare and fair,” it says, appealing to everyone. The creators value low inflation, fair distribution, and scarcity. It was not pre-mined and, years after launch, remains “highly collectible”, though it isn’t immune from price swings in the short term.

It’s an ambitious business model they have: allowing only 250,000 Uno coins to be mined over the next 300 years. It makes one wonder if Uno will ever become a true currency with such a limited supply.

2. It Started as a Simple Meme – Dogecoin

image of the Dogecoin logo for article 10 of the Weirdest Cryptocurrency on the Market
Dogecoin via usethebitcoin.com

Inspired by the popular doge meme, this currency started as a total joke. Despite this, Dogecoin’s peak valuation reached around $2-billion USD as of January of this year and definitely holdest the title for the most successful coin of the weirdest cryptocurrencies.

Jackson Palmer, an Australian entrepreneur and technologist, created the currency as a joke. He thinks that the fact that his illegitimate currency reached such a high valuation signals endemic issues with cryptocurrency as a whole system.

Given that the current Bitcoin value is around $6,200 USD as opposed to its once-soaring value of near $20,000 USD, the issues may be dissipating or — to the dismay of many investors — the cryptocurrency bubble may soon pop.

3. Another Ether Rift – Useless Ethereum Token

There are many riffs on the AAA cryptocurrency Ethereum and this is one of them.

With a very clear take on the original, the logo sports a generally offensive hand gesture. The title of the currency maintains the theme, calling Ethereum tokens “useless”.

However, the ICO offers investors total transparency in its entirely value-less currency.

You’re going to give some random person on the internet money, and they’re going to take it and go buy stuff with it. Probably electronics, to be honest. Maybe even a big-screen television. Seriously, don’t buy these tokens…” states their website.

My favorite part of this parody-heavy currency branding is the phrase “Might be secure, definitely not audited.” More than a little shade thrown against the unregulated ICO market in that phrase.

The craziest thing about this is that they generated $98,864 USD in contributions.

If the currency gains traction, whoever wrote the website copy (presumably, the creator) said they will “use some of the ICO proceeds to constantly and incessantly manipulate the market.” The website also says that UET doesn’t need to return your money. Hilarious.

4. Iä! Iä! Cthulhu Fhtagn! – Cthulhu Offerings

image of the Cthulhu Offerings logo and tagline for article 10 of the Weirdest Cryptocurrency on the Market
Cthulhu Offerings logo and tagline | Cthulhu Offerings

Shout out to the center of the Venn diagram of H.P. Lovecraft fans and crypto traders.

This currency plays on the legendary mythos and its main character: Cthulhu.

For the uninitiated, Cthulhu is a giant sea monster/humanoid elder creature from another dimension. He sleeps under the Pacific Ocean, awaiting release by his loyal cultists. Of course, true Lovecraft fans know that there are bigger baddies to fear.

However, the strangest thing about this currency isn’t necessarily the inspiration.

It is the fact that the coins/tokens play a role in the “religion” surrounding Cthulhu. In fact, they are a part of the “ritual sacrifice” of the lore. Coins become offerings, users become cultists, and they conduct mining via sacrifices.

The currency utilizes OFF to generate coins slowly, just like Bitcoin.

5. A Russian Exclusive – Whoppercoin

image of a Burger King Whopper for article 10 of the Weirdest Cryptocurrency on the Market
A Burger King Whopper via Brand Eating

A food-based cryptocurrency seems like a total long shot. But the Russian sect of fast food chain Burger King thought a blockchain-based rewards program made sense.

So, they instituted a program where customers earn a Whoppercoin for every ruble they spend. When you get 1,700 Whoppercoins, you get a free burger.

So, if the cryptocurrency operates at a 1:1 ratio, that’s 1,700 rubles. When you plug that into a currency translator, it comes out to around $25 USD.

Seems legit.

6. Sadly Not Alien Related – UFOCoin

image of the UFO logo for article 10 of the Weirdest Cryptocurrency on the Market
UFO via cryptocurrencytalk.com

The title and graphic do not, in fact, relate to aliens or unidentified flying objects at all.

“UFO” stands for “Uniform Fiscal Object”. It uses neoscrypt technology for stronger encryption and extra network protection.

Essentially, this means that almost anyone with a desktop computer can mine UFO coins.

Of all the currencies on this list, however, this one seems the most cogent. They advertise their proof of work, 90 second block time, total coinage (around 4 billion), and how many coins come per block (625).

There is automatic checkpointing to protect from attacks and eHRC (enhanced Hashrate Calculation), as well. Check it out.

7. For Crypto Enthusiast Dentists – DentaCoin

Could cryptocurrency be the thing that changes modern dentistry forever?

DentaCoin sees itself as the solution to preventative dental care and improving cost-effectiveness for both patients and dentists.

The video mentions that DentaCoin is already traded on many exchanges, but doesn’t really explain how it works exactly. But the coin is supposed to do more than just offer tokens, however.

It is supposed to make it easier to share data and medical records, pay for procedures, and trade materials and products. There is a supporting app, health database, and “dentavox” — the online market research platform.

Unfortunately, it only has around 4,000 dentists supporting it in just 9 countries.

8. The Once Prominent, now Defunct – Coinye

image of the Coinye cryptocurrency coin for article 10 of the Weirdest Cryptocurrency on the Market
Coinye via The Guardian

Coinye started as quite the hilarious spoof ripping on the trend of creating the weirdest cryptocurrencies possible. The official logo design also featured some refreshing design. It isn’t technically in circulation today, but I couldn’t make a list of weird cryptocurrencies without including it.

Sadly, Kanye West and his estate was none too pleased with the association.

Coinye soon became swept up in a trademark infringement lawsuit. West’s estate disputed that, since he had no affiliation with the project, Coinye could not use his “likeness”.

As a result of the lawsuit, the creators abandoned the project. RIP.

9. Complete With a Programming Language – Mooncoin

image of the MoonCoin logo and tagline for article 10 of the Weirdest Cryptocurrency on the Market
Mooncoin via bitcointalk.org

Okay, this one is definitely one of the weirdest cryptocurrencies, but only because of the moon thing.

The currency is limited to as many coins as the average distance between the Earth and the moon. It is adjusted for micropayments, available for everyone, and, supposedly, faster than Bitcoin.

It even has its own programming language associated with it known as MoonWord. The creators designed it specifically for record-keeping and coding for Mooncoin blockchain. You can use it on the decentralized app (DApp), as well.

Neat.

10. Enhanced Anonymity on the Tor Network – DeepOnion

I have written about the TOR Network before as part of my Top VPN article.

DeepOnion offers the latest TOR integration along with instant confirmations, enhanced privacy, and multiple layers of protection.

Their website has these creepy animated avatars of their employees. But the network seems legitimate and it uses its own wallet for computers or mobile devices.

The company’s chief goal is user privacy, so much so that they guarantee anonymity and confidentiality for users. If you’re interested in it, you can find a complete review here.

This is an exciting time for new kinds of currency and the centralized vs decentralized debate, especially as an insight into the human imagination in creating the weirdest cryptocurrencies. However, you should still watch out for the many and varied cryptocurrency scams.

What are the weirdest cryptocurrencies you’ve found on your internet travels?

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Bitcoin Cash Analysis: Bitmain’s Wormhole Protocol to Boost BCH Adoption

Overly, Bitcoin Cash should be on its way to the moon if we base our analysis on fundamentals. Vitalik is recommending Bitcoin Cash for payment and …
Bitcoin Cash (BCH) Technical Analysis August 17th

Overly, Bitcoin Cash should be on its way to the moon if we base our analysis on fundamentals. Vitalik is recommending Bitcoin Cash for payment and Bitmain’s Wormhole protocol is due for implementation gifting the platform smart contracting capabilities. Regardless, BCH is down 13 percent on a week over week basis but is recovering adding two percent yesterday. Still, we remain net bearish as long as prices are below $600.

News Highlights

Because Bitcoin is Cash, Vitalik Buterin, Ethereum’s figurehead believes cryptocurrency should dominate regular and small scale form of payment—just like cash. After all, most cryptocurrencies were created solely to act as an alternative to fiat which continues to be plagued by calls of manipulation and even flat out deliberate depreciation through hyper-inflation or attacks—refer to Iranian situation and what happened in Zimbabwe for example.In his own conclusion he said the hype element is actually threatening the blurring the main objective of blockchain—which was user case, controls and privacy. At the moment, there are more people talking about price dips than there are using the coin.

Speaking in a private event Vitalik said allowing small time spending of crypto as Bitcoin Cash is not only valuable for the specific blockchain user case but its reverberation would spread beyond that. According to Vitalik, if there is a bridge of the user case gap and more people start spending cryptocurrencies, then the over-all market would likely balloon beyond the $200 billion mark it is at the moment.

Other than these supporting remarks from Vitalik, Bitcoin Cash is right on track and sooner or later we might see the implementation of the Wormhole protocol. This protocol was first proposed by Bitmain, the ASIC manufacturer and once it is live, the platform would have smart contract capabilities allowing for tokenization of assets.

Bitcoin Cash (BCH) Technical Analysis

Weekly Chart

Bitcoin Cash (BCH) Technical Analysis
Click here to see the full Bitcoin Cash Weekly Chart by Trading View

As seen from the chart, there is a little bit of resistance for lower lows but that doesn’t mean our sell projections have been quashed.

In fact, these kinds of price revivals are common place and happen often after periods of extended gains or losses. In our case, Bitcoin Cash printed as high as 35 percent week over week sometimes last week but encouragingly for coin holders, losses have been contained and compared to last week, prices are steady but down 13 percent.

Needless to say, we recommend shorting on highs in lower time frames with key resistance lines at $600. The reason for this stand is clear: BCH is trading below multi-level supports following that dip below the 12 month support trend line at around $750 and most recently that close below $600, the main support line and 2018 lows last week.

Daily Chart

Bitcoin Cash (BCH) Technical Analysis
Click here to see the full Bitcoin Cash Daily Chart by Trading View

The simple fact that prices are trading below our sell trigger line and main support line at $600 means our bear break out pattern set rolling by June 12 and 22 bear candlesticks is live.

Additionally, price action is now below the 30 day $250 trade range with lower limits at $600 meaning this is yet another break out trade.

Now, in line with our previous Bitcoin Cash analysis, I suggest selling on highs in lower time frames with first targets at $300 with stops at $600. Any price thrusts above $600 invalidate this trade plan.

Ethereum, Cardano, Ethereum Classic, Monero, Tron Technical Analysis August 17th


Disclaimer: Views and opinions expressed are those of the author and aren’t investment advice. Trading of any form involves risk and so do your due diligence before making a trading decision.

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