News Headlines (25th JAN 2024)

Bitcoin (BTC) looked to establish a foothold above $40,000 during Thursday’s European trading hours, with the dollar index trading flat ahead of the highly-anticipated U.S. fourth-quarter gross domestic product (GDP) data.

At 09:38 UTC, the leading cryptocurrency by market value changed hands at $40,100, having tested dip demand near $38,500 early this week. The dollar index, which gauges the greenback’s value against major fiat currencies, consolidated near 103.70, down from highs around 103.82 reached Monday.

Popular stocks that give investors Bitcoin exposure have continued their slide as the leading cryptocurrency’s price plunges following the highly anticipated launch of spot crypto exchange-traded funds (ETFs) in the United States.

The major stocks of public companies that hold Bitcoin—such as MicroStrategy, Tesla, and Coinbase—are down significantly over the past month.

Such equities allow investors to have skin in the crypto game—without actually buying and digital assets themselves. But since Bitcoin, the largest and oldest digital coin, has taken a beating this month, so have crypto stocks.

The research and intelligence arm of Blackberry, a tech giant previously dominating the cellphone market, identified and alerted about a financially motivated attacker targetting numerous high-net-worth Mexican cryptocurrency exchanges and banks.

Blackberry’s report identified an attack that attempted to steal sensitive user information from banks and crypto trading services using an open-source remote access tool named AllaKore RAT. The threat aims to install the tool in company-run computers and databases, often bypassing employees’ suspicion by hiding behind official naming schemes and links. The report added:

“The AllaKore RAT payload is heavily modified to allow the threat actors to send stolen banking credentials and unique authentication information back to a command-and-control (C2) server for the purposes of financial fraud.”

According to Foresight News, South Korean blockchain technology company Ozys has accused its former Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) of deliberately weakening the company’s firewall before a security breach that led to an $81.5 million hack of its cross-chain protocol Orbit Bridge. In a blog post published on Thursday, the company revealed that it has filed a lawsuit against the former CISO for damages and submitted a petition requesting local police to investigate any potential connection between the former employee and the hacking incident.

According to the announcement, Solana-based token extensions are designed to cater to a wide range of industries, including stablecoins, real-world assets (RWAs), and payments. These extensions offer features like transfer hooks, transfer fees, confidential transfers, permanent delegate authority, and non-transferability. Each of these features serves a specific purpose, from providing control over token interactions to ensuring compliance with regulatory frameworks.

Anatoly Yakovenko, co-founder and CEO of Solana Labs, highlighted the significance of this development. “Token extensions build on the characteristics that make Solana the ideal destination for developers,” Yakovenko stated. “Solana is the first network to offer this level of integrated developer and user experience in a single token program. We’re already seeing the potential to build using token extensions via deployments from some of the most recognizable names in crypto.”

Crypto asset manager Bitwise on Wednesday became the first of the ten spot bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) issuers to share its digital wallet address with the public.

The San Francisco-based firm tweeted a screenshot showing the Bitwise Bitcoin ETF’s (BITB) bitcoin address along with holdings (11,858 bitcoin) as of January 23. “Anyone can now verify the fund’s holdings and flows directly on the blockchain,” said the company.

“Onchain transparency is core to bitcoin’s ethos,” Bitwise continued. “We’re proud to walk the walk with BITB. Publishing on-chain addresses is a first step toward increasing public transparency As infrastructure evolves, we hope to do more, such as working with firms like Hoeski to provide real-time cryptographic attestations.”

Popular Solana meme coin Dogwifhat (WIF) has soared over 30% in the past day on news that it will be listed on crypto exchange Bitget.

Currently the price of WIF stands at $0.3181, up 30.4% on the day, according to data from CoinGecko.

Trading for Dogwifhat on Bitget began at 9 a.m. UTC today, according to the company. WIF is starting as an offering in the Bitget Innovation Zone, according to a news release.

“Bitget Innovation Zone is mainly for trending tokens (initial) listing. A 60-day valuation period will be given for all the newly listed pairs in the zone,” the company wrote. “Trading pairs will be delisted if the trading pairs do not meet the criteria (eg: Market Depth).”

IOActive chief technology officer Gunter Ollman said that through the vulnerabilities, attackers could steal users’ Bitcoin through the ATM.

ATM machines after a team of ethical hackers took full control of the devices, highlighting some of its flaws.

In 2023, security researchers from IOActive attempted to hijack several ATMs issued by Lamassu. As they worked to access the machines, the research team identified several vulnerabilities that they managed to exploit to gain access to the ATMs.

According to CryptoPotato, Canadian musician Aubrey Drake Graham, better known as Drake, lost $700,000 worth of Bitcoin (BTC) after betting on a UFC fight over the weekend. He used the crypto platform Stake to place his bet, predicting that Sean Strickland would beat Dricus du Plessis, with an estimated profit of over $650,000 in BTC. However, Strickland lost the fight after a split decision from the judges.

This is not the first time Drake has experienced betting losses in sports. The trend of athletes and teams experiencing losses after Drake’s bets has been termed ‘the Drake curse,’ with examples spanning multiple sports. In 2022, he wagered $234,000 in Bitcoin on Ferrari’s driver Charles Leclerc to win the Spanish Grand Prix, only to see Max Verstappen finish first. Later that year, Drake bet $600,000 worth of cryptocurrency on the English soccer team Arsenal to beat Leeds United and FC Barcelona to win its biggest derby against Real Madrid, but the team from Spain’s capital won the match known as ‘El Clasico.’ In 2023, Drake lost $400,000 in BTC after YouTuber Jake Paul lost his fight against Tommy Fury, the younger half-brother of world heavyweight champion Tyson Fury.

Hashkey Capital revealed it has entered into a collaborative agreement with FTSE Russell, renowned for its benchmarks, analytics, and multi-asset data solutions. Together, they have introduced three indices dedicated to monitoring the performance of crypto assets.

Starting Jan. 24, 2024, these indices will be available on the FTSE Russell website. Additionally, there are plans to extend their accessibility to various data providers, including Bloomberg, Factset, LSEG Data and Analytics, Morningstar, and S&P Capital IQ in the future.

“We are excited to have collaborated with HashKey Capital in the development of these new custom indices,” FTSE Russell’s head of Asia-Pacific, Index Investments Group, Chris Williamson remarked during the announcement.