The crypto markets have certainly not been silent for the past months. New records are constantly broken followed by major corrective movements, while different altcoins battle for their place in the spotlight. Now even the top 3 of cryptocurrencies has changed, which is a rather rare event.
This week we will discuss these things as well as other phenomena. According to a fresh study, Bitcoin could work as an excellent collateral asset for bank loans. In turn, a paper wallet provider believed to be safe appears to have turned to the dark side of the Force.
On top of all this we have a dystopian prophecy predicting that You, esteemed bitcoin owners, will in the future be an elite controlling all money and living like lords in high castles. Terrible, isn’t it?
Last week’s news archive can be found here.
Ada rose to become the third biggest cryptocurrency
The ranks of cryptocurrencies have seen significant rearrangements. The Cardano blockchain’s native cryptocurrency Ada recently rose to become the world’s third biggest cryptocurrency counted by its total market cap.
The shift was sudden as Ada’s price rapidly soared 27% at the end of last week, surpassing Tether and remaining roughly $5 billion dollars above it at the time of writing. Thereafter Ada’s price has turned downward, but still persists in the top three right after bitcoin and Ethereum’s ether.
Cardano is a blockchain based on open code with the aim of providing highly developed smart contract options. Unlike Bitcoin and most other successful blockchain projects, Cardano does not use proof-of-work verification, as its security is instead based on proof-of-stake verification.
Proof-of-stake can in theory provide better security than proof-of-work with much lighter power consumption. However, it has not yet been tested on such a wide scale as proof-of-work.
Bitcoin could become loan collateral
In the future up to five percent of all bitcoins could be used as collateral for bank loans and similar agreements. The estimate is based on a recent report published by Arcane Research and crypto exchange Bitstamp.
According to the report, cryptocurrencies and particularly bitcoin are increasingly used as collateral assets for loans. If the course continues, around four million BTC could be locked up as collateral by the year 2023.
In 2019 roughly 200 000 BTC were used as collateral, growing to 419 070 in 2020. By 2023 the number is estimated to double as bitcoin use grows more mainstream.
Google Finance adds crypto tab
Google’s subservice Google Finance has now introduced a new crypto data tab. Google users can use the tab to follow cryptocurrency prices and find other basic data related to them.
At the moment Google Finance only lists a few cryptocurrencies, namely Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin and Bitcoin Cash. In turn many other significant altcoins, such as Cardano’s Ada and Ripple’s XRP are missing from the service.
The addition to Google Finance does in itself not significantly improve the position or visibility of cryptocurrencies. However, it does showcase how crypto has become a growing part of mainstream finance.
Millions stolen from BitcoinPaperWallet
BitcoinPaperWallet, one of the most popular sites used for making bitcoin paper wallets, seems to suffer from serious security problems. As a result, several wallets created through the site have been compromised with millions of dollars worth in BTC swept away.
The reason appears to be a backdoor hidden in the site’s code. This vulnerability was exploited to steal the bitcoins of several users, which blockchain analysis reveals were then transferred to the exchanges Binance and Poloniex.
At least half a dozen victims have been targeted by the theft. In total the victims have lost several millions of dollars worth in BTC.
The earliest hacks seem to date as far back as 2018. Back then BitcoinPaperWallet was sold to new owners, after which reports of lost funds began to surface. Paper wallets created prior to 2018 are seemingly still safe, though this is far from certain.
As one might conclude, using BitcoinPaperWallet is not recommended for anyone at the moment.
YouTube temporarily silenced CoinDesk
YouTube removed the channel of popular Bitcoin media Coindesk last Thursday, citing “severe or repeated violations” of community guidelines as a reason. At the same time YouTube also cut off a live stream of Coindesk’s All About Bitcoin program.
” Content that encourages illegal activities or incites users to violate YouTube’s guidelines is not allowed,” YouTube replied vaguely without specifying details.
YouTube has also earlier removed Bitcoin and cryptocurrency-related channels without clear reasons. Usually the actions have been motivated by articles about illegal or harmful content.
Nonetheless, YouTube decided to reinstate Coindesk’s channel last Saturday after several requests to correct the issue. YouTube has refrained from commenting further on the case.
Economist envisions dystopia ruled by crypto kings
Jon Danielsson from the London School of Economics has envisioned a dark crypto dystopia, which he expects to happen if Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies succeed in their goal and become mainstream. Danielsson believes this would lead to a world in which most people would not want to live.
“To begin with, the current owners of bitcoin will become the wealthiest people in the world, rivalling the kings and emperors that ruled over empires in centuries past. They literally will own all the money. They can buy anything they want. There aren’t that many of them,” Danielsson speculates.
According to Danielsson, states and governments would be forced to protect this new upper class of super-wealthy crypto holders, who achieved their status simply by being early adopters. Danielsson claims they would not provide anything useful for society, but merely sit on its top.
On the other hand Danielsson also asserts such a future is not possible. He believes bitcoin will eventually plunge to zero, because it has no intrinsic value and its price fluctuates so heavily. These appear to echo the same arguments that the mainstream media and Bitcoin skeptics have been voicing while waiting for Bitcoin’s impending death for over a decade now.