Crypto Pundit McAfee Surveys the Community with Surprising Results

Social media plays a huge part in the cryptocurrency ecosystem. Blockchain companies themselves use the various platforms to communicate with their clients and investors and make announcements. Due to the ‘anything goes’ nature of social media it has also attracted a number of colourful characters, one of which is self-appointed crypto overlord John McAfee.

The anti-virus tech mogul has a big presence in crypto land, his once weekly altcoin shills resulted in no end of pump and dump action. McAfee has since moved on to ICOs, writing white papers, and is also conducting surveys. Over 400,000 votes were made in a nine part poll he ran on his Twitter feed over the past 24 hours. The results are quite revealing and give a good insight to the current climate in crypto land.

The first poll was on the ages of the crypto community and it came as no surprise that around half of the respondents were between 18 and 30. What was quite a shock though is that only 4% of those surveyed were over 50.

The second poll asked how often you buy and sell cryptocurrencies and 42% responded once a month or less indicating that they were hodling and investing rather than trading. Less than 20% of those that responded were trading cryptos daily.

The third question asked about the interest in the type of cryptocurrency and over 40% said that altcoins held the greatest interest for them. About a quarter each selected Bitcoin/Ethereum and all currencies and only 5% invested in ICOs.

When asked what percentage of your total assets were invested in crypto it was very surprising to see that almost a third of those surveyed had over 50% of their total savings in crypto. To balance that out 35% said it was less than 10% which is a more comfortable number. It seems that millennials like a big gamble.

58% answered that their primary use for cryptocurrencies were for investment purposes with 38% using them for both investment and as a currency. This balance is likely to change as global adoption increases and it becomes easier, faster and cheaper to transfer them.

When asked about their firm belief respondents largely agreed that crypto and fiat would co-exist. However 27% thought that crypto would eventually replace fiat.

It came as no surprise that 55% of those surveyed said that governments were the greatest threat to cryptocurrencies with 30% of the opinion that banks are.

When asked about barriers to trading or getting into crypto most people agreed that it was registering with exchanges. The only way crypto can truly thrive is when centralized profit making exchanges are done away with and the entire network is peer to peer.

Each poll had an average of around 44,000 respondents, of those surveyed almost a third of them were students with a quarter having a technical background.

Although this poll is very limited as it only includes Twitter users that have followed McAfee it does shed some light into the demographics of the crypto community. With 50% aged under 30, and a third of them being students, these guys are the future. This could go some ways into explaining why the institutional investing and banking dinosaurs that have already made their billions are so anti-crypto.


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Charlie Lee, the creator of cryptocurrency Litecoin, has taken to Twitter to voice his doubts over the current Chinese crypto-ban rumours.

In a series of Tweets from today, the mastermind behind Litecoin claimed to “have a trusted source that says that there’s no truth to China banning mining or network” and that “the FUD is propagated by large manipulators trying to make money shorting. They know that China ban FUD works and cannot be proven wrong.”

He then went on to explain that he had not used the information as the basis for any trades to improve his position, stating: “I have not traded this and have no plans to buy or sell in the near future.” He summed up by reaffirming that the exchange ban is still “absolutely true.”

Since the beginning of September, fear and uncertainty have been rife surrounding the entire cryptocurrency economy and China’s role within it. The extent and impact of the regulation that the Chinese government is seeking to impose are far from clear, and this has caused rumour to circulate wildly.

Lee joins John McAfee of MGT Capital in his skepticism over the claims made amongst the community that the regulation supposedly coming out of China in the near future will extend to mining.

McAfee posted on Twitter on September 18, 2017, that Jihan Wu of Bitmain had informed him that the Chinese executive had no intention of outlawing cryptocurrency mining. He then responded to his followers’ questions with positive answers. When asked if Wu told him “if China is planning to shut down mining”, he responded with, “they are not”. He went on to tell another user that Wu “is more connected than me or [you]” and used this as his reasoning behind believing what he has supposedly been told.

For now, there is no official source to back up either Lee or McAfee’s claim so just how far-reaching any Chinese crypto legislation will be is still completely unknown. It does, however, seem counter-productive for the nation to outlaw the mining of cryptos. The activity generates huge revenue that feeds directly into the pseudo-Communist state’s economy and a ban would likely cause said interests to leave for less hostile regulatory environments.

It looks like we have another interesting plot twist in the world of Bitcoin. A fake Twitter account claiming to be Craig Wright has been officially suspended by the social media company. Many people are confused about this, even though it isn’t his real account. It is unclear why the @realcraigwright handle is suspended from the platform, thought. The impersonation of a verified individual may have something to do with it.

Big was people’s surprise when the @realcragiwright Twitter account was suspended all of a sudden. To this day, many people believe the account belongs to Craig Wright. This man still claims to be Satoshi Nakamoto, yet has failed to provide any evidence thus far. The Twitter account in question always tweets about Bitcoin as well, but it is not his real account. Instead, that account can be found here.

Curtain Call for Fake Craig Wright Twitter Account

It doesn’t happen often such fake accounts are suspended from Twitter it is unclear what lead to this decision in the first place. Given the vast amount of followers this fake account has, it is likely someone reported it. Impersonating  a known individual is never  a good idea. Even though some tweets are posted as a jest, uneducated individuals would certainly consider it to be the real Craig Wright.

Although many people remain unconvinced Craig Wright is Satoshi Nakamoto, creating a fake social media account is something else entirely. While no harmful comments were made by this account, Twitter needs to take strong action against such operations. It is unclear if the account will ever come back or not, though. Suspensions of such accounts can last days, if not weeks or months. In most cases, the problem can be solved by proving the user is who they claim to be, but that will be pretty difficult in this case.

All things considered, this suspension will not affect Bitcoin in any way. People who want to follow Craig Wright need to keep an eye on his official Twitter profile. It is possible the fake account will return in the future, though. Never take anything coming from that person seriously by any means. Rest assured this incident will cause a fair bit of confusion for the foreseeable future.

Header image courtesy of Shutterstock

The increasing regulatory pressure on the Chinese Bitcoin market seems to have claimed its first victim. Samson Mow, the Chief Operating Officer at BTCC, one of the leading Chinese cryptocurrency exchanges, has announced his plans to quit the company.

The announcement was made by Samson on his Twitter channel earlier yesterday. The Tweet read,

“Today’s my last day at @YourBTCC. It’s been an incredibly eventful & exciting 2 years working with @bobbyclee to make #bitcoin great again.

As the cryptocurrency community continued to guess the reason behind Mow’s departure, the CEO of BTCC Bobby Lee cleared the air by tweeting the reason behind the COO’s recent decision. Bobby said,

“@Excellion has been our COO for 2 great years. I’m sad to announce that he will leave @YourBTCC this week to be with his family in Canada.”

It is quite possible for Mow’s decision to be influenced by the latest developments in the country’s regulatory atmosphere. But, there are no clear indications to support such speculations at the moment.

However, Samson Mow’s announcement has received a warm response from the Canadian Bitcoin community. Francis Pouliot from Bitcoin Embassy Canada has welcomed Mow to the North American nation by tweeting,

“…@YourBTCC your loss is our gain! Welcome back to Canada Samson!”

Amid the regulatory crisis, BTCC has extended the period of Bitcoin withdrawals on its platform. The company had announced that there would be a 72-hour holding period for any BTC and LTC withdrawal requests. Soon after, it was extended to 10 days, and now the platform has pushed it further, till March 15, 2017.

BTCC’s customers will no longer be able to access their cryptocurrency funds until the platform verifies all withdrawals. While the platform works on setting-up a verification system in place, users can continue depositing and withdrawing fiat currency on BTCC. The cryptocurrency withdrawals might get further delayed if the platform doesn’t implement the necessary changes in time.

Ref:  Twitter | Image: NewsBTC

Hackers have been wreaking havoc both within and beyond the Bitcoin community. The number of hacking incidents faced by Bitcoin platforms, banks, companies and other organizations and even individuals stands proof to that. KeepKey, the Bitcoin hardware wallet company has had a taste of it after some of their email and social media accounts got compromised.

On Reddit social platform, a user going by the username “dstanchfield” claiming to be “Darin from KeepKey” has informed the Bitcoin community about the breach. According to KeepKey’s CEO and founder Darin Stanchfield, his email account was first compromised by hackers. Once they gained access to this email account, they seem to have taken over all accounts and services that were associated with it.

Among the compromised accounts include the company’s Twitter handle. In the recent days, Twitter has turned into the main platform for communication between companies and their customers. By gaining control over KeepKey’s account they can potentially trick existing KeepKey users to divulge sensitive information that can compromise the security of their cryptocurrency holdings.

In order to prevent such a scenario from playing out, KeepKey’s Darin has forewarned the community about the loss of control over their official Twitter handle. The company is said to have updated Twitter about the situation and are awaiting their response. His statement on Reddit reads,

“My email tonight was compromised, as well as a few of our accounts with emails that were reset. Our twitter account is not under our control, and we have notified Twitter. We will provide more information as soon as it is available. All customer funds stored on KeepKey devices are safe!”

As per the latest update, KeepKey hasn’t yet regained control over its twitter account and once it does, Darin will be confirming it over GPG. He also stresses upon the safety of the customer’s funds in their respective hardware wallets. More updates are yet to follow as the situation develops.

Ref: Reddit | Image: NewsBTC

A recent tweet by Brian Armstrong, the co-founder and CEO of Coinbase on the upcoming Etheruem hard fork hasn’t been received well by the cryptocurrency community.

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Brian Armstrong, on his twitter channel, wrote — “If Ethereum pulls off this hard fork, very positive signal for them as a team. Shows they can listen to community, execute in time of crisis,” referring to the recent decision by the Ethereum Foundation to execute a hard fork to retrieve $60 million worth of DAOs that were siphoned off by an unknown developer. Armstrong was able to manage that by taking advantage of a critical flaw in the Ethereum/DAO network. But for many, his tweet has made him sound uninformed and clueless about what is happening with Ethereum.

Community members have taken to Reddit to criticize his Twitter statement. It is not just Brian Armstrong who is at the receiving end of the community’s ire, even Ethereum network is facing heat for its decision to hard fork the network as many Ethereum users are not convinced by the actions of the network and they fear that such an action may lead to Ethereum abandoning its principles and eventually fall out of favor in the cryptocurrency community.

Creating a hard fork on the Ethereum protocol will mean that the developers of Ethereum network will be forcibly taking decisions on behalf of the community, without them having a say in it. It is understandable that some people in the community may end up losing their money if the network doesn’t retrieve it, but many of those people had initially invested in DAO because they believed in the integrity of Ethereum protocol.  Many believe that the hard fork on Ethereum will lead the protocol one step closer to centralization.

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Also, Brian Armstrong’s comment seems to completely disagree with the opinions voiced by Fred Ehrsam, the other co-founder of Coinbase and Charlie Lee, the creator of Litecoin, who all believe that it is better to learn from the mistakes than trying to fix it by force to end up breaking the whole system instead.

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Few Ethereum mining pools have also conducted surveys to gauge the opinion of miners, to find out that there are many who are against the upcoming hard fork. In addition, a hard fork at the moment can kill Ethereum as businesses wouldn’t want to automate their operations using smart contracts that can stop working overnight if the developers decide to create a hard fork out of the blue.

Ethereum is in a catch-22 situation at the moment as the Ethereum Foundation and developers find themselves vulnerable to legal action if someone decides to file a lawsuit against them, claiming compensation. We don’t have to wait for long to know the outcome of the DAO debacle.

Ref: Reddit | Twitter | QZ |Image: NewsBTC

Seattle-based Bitcoin wallet service provider iPayYou has announced the launch of a service which enables users to send and receive Bitcoin payments on Twitter.

The service, called Pay-by-Twitter, allows all iPayYou wallet users to send Bitcoin payments to Twitter accounts or handles that are not associated with the iPayYou platform. The merit of sending payments via Twitter instead of email or bitcoin addresses is the anonymity it provides.

The iPayYou team further emphasized that the elimination of exchanging private information is beneficial for both the sending and receiving parties.

“Twitter is one of the most widely used social media networks worldwide and despite the speed of technological innovation in the 21st Century, no other full-service bitcoin wallet offered this feature until now,” announced iPayYou CEO Gene Kavner.

“With the new Pay-by-Twitter feature, iPayYou continues to offer consumers with easy ways to use Bitcoin as a payment method in everyday life, which has been our mission from the start,” he continued.

The method in sending and receiving iPayYou bitcoin payments through Twitter is similar to that of traditional online financial deposits, in the sense that Twitter accounts receive requests to withdraw the Bitcoin payment on the iPayYou platform. Users can make the choice to either open a bitcoin wallet account on the iPayYou platform or send the Bitcoin to another bitcoin wallet.

The startup believes that amongst many other applications that can be enabled by the Pay-by-Twitter service, donations or micropayments to organizations, content creators, or individuals will be made much simpler than conventional forms of payments.

For instance, Kavner explained that presidential candidates can receive donations or payments without providing any sort of private information. Donors or supporters can simply use the iPayYou platform to send bitcoin payments to certain Twitter accounts which can be claimed by the receiver with ease.

Bitcoin expert Roger Ver, who also is one of the investors of iPayYou stated that the Seattle-based startup is one of the most interesting consumer directed companies in the bitcoin industry because of its unique services.

“iPayYou is one of the most exciting new companies in the bitcoin industry which is directed at consumers. Their new Pay-by-Twitter feature is just one example of how iPayYou are paving the way to promote the mass adoption of bitcoin,” said Ver.

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Neo & Bee was a Cyprus-based bitcoin startup offering bitcoin savings and payment processing services. Founded by Danny Brewster, who also served as the CEO, Neo & Bee had an office in Nicosia and was targeting the European market with its bitcoin services. The company went bust in mid-2014 following the disappearance of Danny Brewster along with most of the funds belonging to the investors who bought the company’s shares from three exchanges including Havelock Investments.

The company had allegedly raised over 9000 BTC, all of it unaccounted for. Since his disappearance by the end of March 2014, he has tried to convince investors that he played no part in the demise of their funds on multiple platforms including Reddit and Bitcoin Talk, after which he was nowhere to be seen or heard from. Suddenly this new year, Danny Brewster has made an appearance on Twitter, with what sounds like renewed enthusiasm and optimism. He claims that the tables are turning, which is indeed cryptic for many Cypriots as well and others who are still waiting for Danny Brewster to pay what is due to them.

It is not just the investors, even many ex-employees of Neo & Bee still have their salaries due. Danny in one of the tweets claims that the investors will soon be getting their money back, and he will finally set the record straight after over a year and half of deception and hiding. On Danny Brewster’s twitter thread, one of the ‘Twitter peeps’ going by the Twitter handle @M0rgUK asks about a Bentley he bought and shipped to the UK. It is unclear whether he was referring to a recent purchase (as we have not managed to lay our hands on any such records) or the one Danny used to own in Cyprus before he did a ‘Houdini’ on everyone.

danny tweetWhile Danny has been offering self-contradictory statements regarding the fate of funds, it has been hard to zero in on the actual facts behind its disappearance so far. However, we do hope that whatever Danny Brewster has recently claimed on Twitter to be true and the investors in Neo & Bee do get their money back. We certainly hope that it was ‘Neo’ who was responsible for mismanagement of funds and Bee’ will set it right at least this year. After all, no one knows who Neo is! 
 
 
 
 
 

Another customer data breach is in the news, only this time, the results are worse than we’re used to. The breach occurred in the United Arab Emirates, and the attack is being labeled as the biggest in the country’s history.

According to Bitcoinist.net, Sharjah bank in the UAE was the victim of a massive hack that took place on November 18th of this year. Customer data was held by “Hacker Buba,” the alias of the alleged attacker. Buba leaked the information on social media outlets and explained that he wouldn’t stop until the bank agreed to pay the bitcoin ransom he had set forth.

The bank’s chief financial and operating officer explained:

“Yes, there was a data breach and we have been contacted by Hacker Buba. He is asking for money but I cannot reveal how much. This is blackmail. We have reported the matter to UAE Central Bank. The Telecom Regulatory Authority’s (TRA) Computer Emergency Response Team (aeCERT) is investigating… We won’t give in to any extortion threat. In any case there has been no financial loss. All what this man has is some customer information and he’s trying to use it as a bargaining chip.”

Following the initial attack, Twitter suspended Buba’s account, but it appears the hacker had a few tricks up his sleeve. The following day, Buba was back on Twitter, and in an act of revenge, had allegedly uploaded account statements of approximately 500 bank customers in a single tweet. He then went about texting and emailing the bank’s customers, telling them that their accounts were in his hands and that they’d better pay his ransom if they didn’t want their information released publicly online.

Thus far, the hacker’s whereabouts have been unknown, although regional director of MENA, Intel Security Hamed Diab recently explained:

“Hacker Buba’s Twitter location points to a county in Hungary, his previous posts are in Indonesian language while the SMS sent to customers were from a cellphone with a UK number.”