Cryptocurrency Highlights Of The Week

The Ethereum hard fork was a success, and the ECB is taking aim at Bitcoin. Here are the cryptocurrency highlights of week 42:

  • Ethereum successfully hard forked at the start of the week in a bid to stop denial of service (DoS) attacks that had been ongoing for about a month. The hard fork repriced certain network functions, making it harder for the attacker to slow down the network. The attacker did manage to find a way to do (less severe) attacks using another mispriced opcode. The latter will now be addressed in a second hard fork, which was already planned in order to remove empty accounts the attacker created to bloat the blockchain.

  • Ethereum Classic will be replicating Ethereum’s fork on October 25. The network has been experiencing attacks similar to those on Ethereum, as both platforms are running the same code and therefore share vulnerabilities. The plans the fork Ethereum Classic recently caused a lot of controversy in the community, as some consider it a “violation of immutability”.

  • The European Central Bank (ECB) has proposed a directive of the European Parliament and of the Council stating that ‘virtual currencies do not qualify as currencies from a Union perspective,’ and wants digital currencies to be explicitly defined as not legal currencies or money. According to the ECB, the use of digital currencies, such as bitcoin, pose a threat as terrorists and criminal groups are able to transfer money within digital currency networks with a certain level of anonymity. The ECB believes that as digital currencies aren’t required to be exchanged into legally established currencies they can be utilized as for illegal activities.

  • Bitfinex is seeking to strike a deal with the hacker or hackers who stole $65m in bitcoin from the exchange back in August. In a blog post titled “Message to the individual responsible for the Bitfinex security incident of August 2, 2016” Bitfinex states it would like the “opportunity to securely communicate” with the hacker, with the goal of reaching a “mutually agreeable arrangement in exchange for an enormous bug bounty (payable through a more privacy-centric and anonymous way)”. The exchange has set up an email address, PGP key and public key server, while it is also offering instructions on why it believes the technical tools would enable the hacker to securely, and anonymously, contact the exchange.

  • The price of Bitcoin increased by almost three percent this week to a current rate of about $658 per BTC. The price of Ethereum gained almost two percent, taking Ether to a rate of $12.08 per ETH. Ethereum Classic gained more than five percent, taking the price to $1.05 per ETC. Monero lost another two percent of its value. XMR is now trading at a rate of $6.47 per coin.
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