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Ethereum 2.0 Deposit Contract Almost ready



Ethereum 2.0 Deposit Contract Almost ready

Ethereum 2.0 is soon to begin the process of launching, starting with the deposit contract which has “finished formal verification,” according to Danny Ryan, a coder coordinating eth 2.0.

They’re currently finishing standardization of what is called the Boneh–Lynn–Shacham (BLS) signature scheme.

This is the actual cryptography that makes ownership authentication possible with apparently quite a few new blockchain projects using it, so “it makes sense to adopt a common approach to facilitate interoperability in the future” says Ben Edgington of ConsenSys’ eth 2.0 client PegaSys.

To meet that standard, they had to make what looks like a small change to comply with the new hash to curve standard.

Edgington said last month he himself already implemented the new scheme in Java, while Kirk Baird of another eth2.0 client, Lighthouse by Sigma Prime, implemented it in Python.

However, “although the BLS Standardisation effort is nearing completion, we can’t deploy the contract until that signature scheme is deemed stable,” says Ryan.

Everything else seems to have been finished, with the deposit smart contract – which uses BLS for part of the validator registration process – written in Vyper.

Vyper, as you may know, is a smart contract programming language similar to Solidity, but more pythonic. Ryan says:

“After identifying and fixing a Vyper compiler bug, the deposit contract has finished formal verification and is ready to go when the standardization effort is completed.”

Last month Edgington said the BLS changes should take a few weeks to complete, but the deposit contract will now launch presumably shortly after Devcon which begins on Tuesday.

“This shouldn’t delay the planned start of the beacon chain in Q1 next year,” Edgington said.

The Ethereum 2.0 Upgrade

These BLS changes are unlikely to affect the time estimates for launch presumably because it depends more on just how quickly the eth is deposited to the contract, with 3 million eth needed to start off.

This eth is one-way transferred to the Beacon Chain where they can’t really move much further until storage sharding goes out in phase 1 sometime next year.

This eth on the Beacon Chain is instead to Proof of Stake (PoS) with Vitalik Buterin, ethereum’s co-founder, putting up some numbers last month to estimate earnings based on all sorts of conditions.

It’s a completely new chain which kind of has no relation to the Proof of Work (PoW) chain except that it can “read” it and next year might even be able to “write” to it by finalizing blocks.

Meaning there will be a new genesis block for the brand new blockchain. Its launch is first awaiting the multi-client testnet which too is expected to launch very soon.

That testnet is basically the new blockchain, but in lab conditions to find bugs and refine everything with crossed t-s and dotted is.

Presuming everything goes fine, then about three months of this public testnet which anyone can join should be sufficient.

So if the testnet goes out this month, they should be able to make it for January or around that time during winter.

Beacon and Stake

This year’s Devcon may well better be remembered as the Devcon Ethereum 2.0 as there will be much focus on it ahead of its launch.

We are therefore likely to learn quite a lot more about both beacon and stake as well as sharding and much else.

The numbers given by Buterin go some way towards giving a much better idea of what one can expect, but once the testnet launches, people will probably start building their staking “equipment” or maybe even template set-ups.

Some of them may have already begun because those that go first get more rewards. Like if it’s just 500,000 eth, they can get as much as 37%.

That’s 37% of 500,000. In regards to total supply, new issuance from staking is minuscule at about 0.2%.

In addition, the first eth doesn’t have the privilege. All eth are equal, whether first or last, but if in total it’s 2.5 million eth, they get 13% a year in eth. Even at 4.5 million eth it’s at 9.2%.

Since stalkers’ interest is that no other stakers join, the social dynamics can be interesting because one can expect current stakers to dissuade potential new stakers by exaggerating potential risks so that they don’t “dilute” their earnings.

In regards to pools too, they may face DDoS or other attacks, although that could be risky as punishment is based on how many stakers misbehave at the same time.

Yet one can clearly see the need for some “altruistic” or “official” easy step by step tutorial on how to set-up staking because those who stake obviously have stake, so from a network-wide social perspective, the more of them, you’d think the better.

Staking at the beginning however can be quite risky because it’s all-new, although there would have been the testnet period where everyone can experiment and learn.

In addition, any protocol level bugs are unlikely to lead to losses because changes would be made, but user-level “bugs” can lead to losses.

Just what sort, in what circumstances, and much else, maybe detailed further at Devcon where a lot more clarity might be reached as the entire ecosystem descends on Osaka ahead of the Proof of Stake launch.

Blockchain News

Fidelity Investments Launches Crypto Custody Service



Fidelity Investments Launches Crypto Custody Service
Fidelity Investments Launches Crypto Custody Service

American financial services company Fidelity Investments has fully launched its cryptocurrency custody service. Abigail Johnson, CEO of Fidelity Investments, revealed the development in an interview with the Financial Times published on Oct. 18. Johnson said that the company is ready to roll out its crypto custody business following a year-long preparation and accumulation of clients.

Last fall, Fidelity specifically indicated that it would provide an enterprise-grade crypto custody service to hedge funds, family offices, and financial advisors. Johnson called that kind of service nascent and not developed, but noted its potential, saying:

“There are people out there with significant amounts of wealth in cryptocurrencies, probably Bitcoin, and they’re looking for somebody to hold those coins for them because in the event of their passing — which is going to happen at some point or another — you’ve got to have a plan to be able to get those coins to somebody else.”

Speaking about Coinbase’s custody offering, Johnson argued that Coinbase “is still a company that most people had never heard of, and they don’t have the existing relationships with the independent advisers.”

As previously reported, Coinbase Custody was initially announced in November 2017 and launched in July 2018, to provide robust security of crypto assets, which according to Coinbase has been institutional investors’ “‘number one concern.” As of August, Coinbase Custody claimed to store assets on behalf of more than 120 clients in 14 different countries.

Recently, Kathleen Murphy, personal investing president of Fidelity Investments, said that the firm does not offer cryptocurrencies on retail trading platforms to protect its clients. When asked when she expects users to trade crypto “in a meaningful way” on Fidelity’s platform, Murphy replied:

“You know, we’re really careful about that. So while we embrace crypto in terms of trying to understand it and be innovative and thoughtful… We’re also very careful about where we offer those types of things, so they’re not offered broadly on the retail platform. We want to be very careful about making sure that investors who really aren’t institutional investors […] don’t make a mistake with cryptocurrency.”

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Blockchain News

Bitfinex Files for Subpoena in Bid to Recover $880 Million in Frozen Funds



Bitfinex Files for Subpoena in Bid to Recover $880 Million in Frozen Funds

Bitfinex has applied to a U.S. court to subpoena a former banking executive of a trusted company that the crypto exchange believes can help it recover over $850 million in frozen funds.

The exchange submitted a filing on Oct. 18 to a court in California for obtaining the permission to take the deposition testimony of Rondell “Rhon” Clyde Monroe, a former vice president of TCA Bancorp. It also seeks to obtain documentation of Monroe’s communication with Crypto Capital staffers.

Bitfinex alleges in the filing that Crypto Capital “has used one or more accounts held at TCA Bancorp to facilitate the transfer of funds” belonging to itself and believes Monroe has information and documents vital to their claims to over $850 million.

Bitfinex’s filing comes as part of the on-going proceedings where it seeks to recover $880 million of its funds held at its payment processor Crypto Capital that was said to be frozen by multiple government agencies.

Meanwhile, Bitfinex is also under investigation by the New York Attorney General’s Office for allegedly using a loan from its sister company Tether to cover up the frozen funds without disclosing to customers.

Bitfinex said in the filing that its relationship with Crypto Capital operated generally well until April last year when news emerged that funds at Crypto Capital had been seized by authorities in Poland due to money-laundering investigation.

Bitfinex said that in August 2018, Crypto Capital told it that about $500 million of its funds in both Poland and Portugal were being “held up” by regulators in the two countries. The exchange added that after being pressured to provide more information concerning the frozen banking accounts, Crypto Capital provided a reference letter signed by Monroe from TCA.

The letter presented the custody of a little over $300 million of Bitfinex’s funds at TCA on behalf of a customer called Global Trade Solutions AG (GTS), doing business as “Crypto Capital.”

As such, Bitfinex is applying to take deposition testimony of Monroe, as well as documentation of his communication with Ozzie Yosef, a principal at Crypto Capital; Yosef’s sister Ravid Yosef; Reginald Dennis Fowler, a sole shareholder of GTS; as well as Fowler’s son Trent Dennis Fowler, who is said to be the registered holder for at least one account used by Crypto Capital to receive deposits from Bitfinex customers.

Notably, Reginald Fowler and Ravid Yosef have been indicated by the U.S Department of Justice for alleged bank fraud charges in connection to a system for depositing funds to cryptocurrency exchanges.

Read the full application below:


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Bitcoin News

Cryptocurrency And Blockchain News Update 21st October 2019



Cryptocurrency And Blockchain News Update 21st October 2019

New York Court Postpones SEC Hearing About Telegram

The United States District Court for the Southern District of New York has postponed the hearing regarding the Securities and Exchange Commission’s injunction filing against Telegram Open Network (TON) and its Gram token to Feb. 18–19, 2020. Recently, the SEC has claimed that not only did Telegram violate the U.S. securities laws during its initial coin offering (ICO), but it also is seeking a preliminary injunction to prevent Telegram from further violations.

Tron CEO – Says He is Not Investing in Poloniex

Tron founder and CEO Justin Sun seemed to have refuted recent reports suggesting that he is leading an investment group behind the acquisition of cryptocurrency exchange Poloniex. In a recent statement Sun has claimed that he is “not buying anything,” noting that he is an investor and disclosing some of his crypto assets

Ethereum Based Token Created As An Incentive For Workers

Enterprise Ethereum Alliance has created a token system to encourage the active contribution of member organizations and their employees to the cooperative.  The tokens are powered by the EEA’s Off-chain Trusted Compute Specification and is said to be trustworthy enough for use both within and between different companies. The system was first demonstrated at the Devcon5 conference at the start of October in Osaka as part of an experiment conducted inside the EEA.

Bittrex Is Closing Operations In 31 Countries

Bittrex International, The Malta-based international unit of United States’ crypto exchange Bittrex, will cease operations in Venezuela and 30 other countries.  In an email to Venezuelan customers, Bittrex International announced that the exchange will halt account and trading access to users on Oct. 29, asking them to withdraw their funds with the exchange before that date.  But Venezuela is not the only country that is going to be parting ways with the exchange. Bittrex will be halting the service for, Afghanistan, Egypt, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Cambodia, the Central African Republic, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ivory Coast, Tunisia, Ethiopia, Uganda and Yemen, and others.

HTC Creates A Phone That Can Run A Bitcoin Node

The Taiwanese electronics giant HTC has launched its new smartphone which is called the Exodus 1s, This device enables users to run a full Bitcoin node on mobile. The phone was launched at a Lightning Conference in Berlin on Oct. 19 and started selling the first devices during the even using the Lightning payment network.

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