Kraken Security Labs reported an attack on the Trezor series of hardware wallets. Within 15 minutes, their security team was able to extract the private key from either a Trezor or Model T device. This would allow the theft of all coins contained by the wallet. The attack does require access to the device so the threat is neutralized with the use of a BIP39 passphrase combined with keeping your Trezor device in a secure place.
A British court has ordered crypto exchange, Bitfinex, to put a hold on about $860,000 worth of Bitcoin obtained via ransomware and deposited there. Blockchain analytics firm Chainalysis was able to trace the flow of funds from a victim.
Bitfinex also launched Tether Gold trading this week. This stablecoin is pegged to the price of gold and backed by physical gold reserves. This could represent an interesting way for gold traders to reduce their trading fees.
Zermatt, a small ski resort town in Switzerland, is now accepting tax payments in the form of Bitcoin. It is now the second region in Switzerland to do so. The Swiss city of Zug, known as “crypto valley”, started accepting Bitcoin for tax payments back in 2016.
Chainalysis, the blockchain analytics firm released a cybercrime report stating that 1.1% of all crypto transactions, roughly $11 billion were linked to cybercrime last year. Most of the criminal activity was related to darknet market transactions or terrorist funding.
Before we conclude, this week’s “Bitcoin quick question” is can Bitcoin be shut down?
While a certain government may declare Bitcoin as illegal which in turn will deter many people from using it, there’s no way to forcefully shut down Bitcoin as it doesn’t have any one central point of failure.
Each computer running the Bitcoin network, known as a node, holds a complete copy of the blockchain. In order to shut down Bitcoin completely, a government will need to locate and shut down all of these nodes simultaneously or ban Internet access completely on all of its citizens.
Today there are around 11,000 Bitcoin nodes spread around the world in over 100 countries. Any country seeking to shut down Bitcoin will have to work hand in hand with so many governments it seems almost impossible to imagine.
To view the complete Bitcoin node list worldwide click on the link in the description.
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That’s what’s happened this week in Bitcoin. See you next week.