Blockchain & IT Infrastructure
Advancements in blockchain technology have certainly had a major impact on the cryptocurrency market. As new tokens present alternatives to old financial systems, many people are perhaps overlooking the power of blockchain technology behind the projects themselves. Let’s take a look at some of the biggest blockchain projects on the market today and how they can potentially influence the future of IT infrastructure.
When most people think of file storage from a traditional standpoint, it seems like a binary system. Either you have enough storage or you don’t. Just a few decades ago, people had to rely upon CDs and floppy disks, which were slow and added very minimal amounts of memory. Of course, external hard drives improved this. Finally, today there are cloud storage solutions like Dropbox, OneDrive, iCloud, and others that offer some degree of improvement. While these solutions are better, they are still far from optimal.
Blockchain projects like Filecoin (FIL) and Storj (STORJ) could be the solutions that change the future of file storage. First of all, these solutions are considered to be much better than today’s most popular cloud storage products because they promise to have higher bandwidth and fewer unexpected outages. In addition, decentralized file storage applications also address the issue of privacy. Because traditional cloud storage products hold data in centralized databases, every user’s files are at risk of being hacked. In fact, this happened to Dropbox back in 2012 when 68 million users were hacked. The most alarming thing is that the company didn’t even report this issue until 2016. With decentralized file storage solutions, hacks are extremely more difficult to execute, and any data breach wouldn’t affect nearly as many users.
Another vital component driving the adoption of decentralized file storage is the fact that prices will be much lower than current solutions. That’s because files will be stored across a P2P network instead of via expensive database centers. This will likely be done by using cryptocurrency payments as incentives for individual users to join the network.
Check out our complete guide to decentralized file storage solutions.
Mesh networking has grown from a commercially-used technology to a consumer-level technology in just a few short years. Today’s products like Eero, Luma, and Google Wi-Fi all help to decrease wireless internet connection dead spots and boost connectivity levels for devices. Mesh networks work by adding nodes to Wi-FI network so that devices have multiple possible connection points, not just the single connection point offered by traditional routers and existing IT infrastructure.
Projects like Althea and SmartMesh (SMT) can be applied to solve internet connectivity problems in previously unconnected, remote places as well as those with high network congestion (i.e. sport stadiums and concert venues). Because data with SmartMesh, for example, doesn’t have to go through centralized networks and can instead remain within the mesh network, connection speeds are faster and electricity consumption is lower. Althea goes beyond just offering wireless internet to coffee shops and airports. It offers the ability for communities to create their own decentralized ISPs, which also make browsing private and neutral by default. Decentralized mesh network projects won’t just make the internet itself faster and more widely available but will also advance the capabilities of newer technologies like IoT and IoE.
While the computing power of regular computers is increasing every year, the capabilities of one machine are still no match for that of a supercomputer. That’s why projects like Golem (GNT) and iExec RLC (RLC) have become popular.
Allowing people to buy and sell computing power necessary to complete more complex tasks essentially allows anyone to create a supercomputer from using the power of multiple computers across the network. For now, Golem is focusing on a single use case: CGI rendering. However, as the projects like these continue to develop their technologies, it’s easy to see how this concept could also be applied to solve current computation limitations. For example, scientific modeling, data science, machine learning, and many more potential applications could all benefit from decentralized computation.
Decentralized computation will allow businesses to scale their IT infrastructure by giving them more computing power at lower costs. Instead of having to buy a supercomputer which could run in the millions or even billions of dollars, businesses could one day have access to a similar level of computing power at a fraction of the cost. The best part about this model is the flexibility it can offer for those needing extra computing power. Instead of having to buy a large amount of dedicated equipment, users would simply pay the network only when extra amounts of computation are required.
File storage, mesh networks, and computation will all see the benefits of advancements in blockchain technology. Even though the above-mentioned projects have already produced some promising results, there could very well be even more projects that will change these and other important sectors of IT. In the coming years for IT infrastructure, we will likely see increased security and privacy as well as decreasing costs.
Mexican narcos use bitcoin to ‘clean up’ revenue
Mexico City.- Criminal organizations such as the Jalisco Nueva Generación Cartel (CJNG) or the Beltrán Leyva launches illicit proceeds in the United States and the rest of the world through virtual currencies such as bitcoin, the Drug Enforcement Administration assures (DEA , for its acronym in English).
According to the report National Evaluation of Drug Threat 2017, China is a fixed center for money laundering through large shipments of products manufactured in that country, where cryptocurrency is very popular.
‘In previous years, the preferred methods were money transfer systems (…) Today bitcoin and other virtual currencies allow cartels to transfer illicit profits on an international scale,’ the document said.
Last Wednesday the Attorney General’s Office (PGR) and the DEA created a joint team to combat the financial networks of drug trafficking.
That same day, Alfonso Durazo, future secretary of Public Security, reported that the anti-crime strategy of the next government will prioritize combating the economic resources of drug trafficking over the capture of gang leaders.
The narco prefers bitcoin to wash
According to the DEA, for a couple of years the Mexican cartels have been buying virtual currencies, which they use to purchase products in China that they sell later in Latin America.
For a couple of years cryptocurrency, mainly bitcoin, has become one of the most effective digital platforms to launder drug money, and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) of the United States is looking for ways to stop this problem that grows every year.
According to the document National Evaluation of Drug Threat 2017, of which Excelsior has a copy, the transnational criminal organizations, where the Mexican women stand out as the Pacific cartel, the Beltrán-Leyva and the Jalisco Nueva Generación Cartel, are being well advised by brokers in the so-called deep web to use virtual currencies and launder illicit profits in the United States and other parts of the world.
‘In previous years, the preferred methods for moving and laundering illicit profits, that is, the smuggling of bulk money, was to use money transfer systems, money laundering based on commerce and the formal banking sector. Today the bitcoin and other virtual currencies allow the cartels to transfer, easily, illicit gains on an international scale, ‘said the document, which is signed by Chuck Rosenberg, who until the end of September 2017 headed the DEA, and then resigned due to friction with the President Donald Trump.
The data shown by the DEA for 2017 show that drug sales in the United States represent around 64 billion dollars, or 21% of the 300 billion dollars in illicit profits generated, currently, by all forms of crime in the United States. this country.
‘Drug trafficking is a very intensive cash enterprise, in dollars, so criminal organizations must overcome several obstacles to successfully launder and spend illicit profits,’ said the report declassified by the authority of that country.
For 2016, according to the analysis of the DEA, California, Georgia and Texas, three of the states with the largest seizures of dollars in bulk to drug trafficking reported seizures of 94.2 million dollars. This amount decreased significantly, by more than 50%, compared to the previous two years.
‘The decrease in seizures is indicative of the use of other more discrete methods of moving illicit money,’ he said.
According to the study Sex, Drugs, and Bitcoin: How Much Illegal Activity Is Financed Through Cryptocurrencies ?, published in January of this year, cryptocurrencies are among the largest unregulated markets in the world.
‘We found that approximately a quarter of the bitcoin users and half of the bitcoin transactions are associated with illegal drug trafficking activities. About 72 billion dollars of illegal activities per year involve bitcoin, which is close to the scale of the illegal drug markets in the United States and Europe. ‘
In 2016, the US authorities reported more than 2,800 incidents of bulk cash confiscation for drug trafficking issues totaling more than 336 million dollars. This meant a decrease of 27% compared to the 464.2 million dollars of the previous year in reported cash seizures.
Since 2010 there has been a steady decrease in the gross amount of bulk cash seizures throughout the United States. ‘This low could be indicative of the use of other more discrete methods to move illicit money such as cryptocurrencies, and could even explain the boom bitcoin has had in recent years,’ several analysts have suggested to the DEA.
Bitcoin: New way to launder income of Mexican cartels
Mexico City.- Some of Mexico’s main criminal organizations laundered their profits globally through the use of virtual currencies such as Bitcoin. The above according to the report National Evaluation of Drug Threat 2017, prepared by the Drug Control Administration (DEA).
In this regard, the institution noted that China has become a major center of money laundering, for which large shipments are used from the Asian country, where cryptocurrencies have become very popular currencies.
In previous years, the preferred methods were money transfer systems. Today bitcoin and other virtual currencies allow cartels to transfer illicit profits on an international scale, ‘the report says.
For this reason, the PGR and the DEA decided on Wednesday to form a joint team to combat the financial networks of drug trafficking, a strategy that promises to be more effective than capturing the leaders of criminal gangs.
In previous years, the preferred methods for moving and laundering illicit profits, ie the smuggling of bulk money, was to use money transfer systems, money laundering based on commerce and the formal banking sector. Today, bitcoin and other virtual currencies allow cartels to easily transfer illicit profits on an international scale, ‘the DEA informed.
He added that for 2017 the sale of drugs in the US, represented profits of 64 billion dollars, 21 percent of all illicit money generated in that country at present.
Meanwhile, a second study noted that currently half of the bitcoin transactions are linked to drug trafficking, which means a total of 72 billion dollars. This goes hand in hand with a decrease of 27 percent in cases of confiscation of cash money by drug trafficking.
Vault Coin (VLTC) Cryptocurrency Daily Volume at $1 as Price Down to $0.000064
The cryptocurrency market took a massive tumble in the week following the SEC’s announcement that it would postpone its ruling on whether to allow the listing of the Cboe VanEck/SolidX ETF backed by Bitcoin (BTC) to September 30. When all was said and done, the total market capitalization dropped to as low as $189 billion, levels not seen since November of last year.
However, since hitting that low on Tuesday, the market experienced a fairly sizeable altcoin bounce that brought back more than $35 billion in total capitalization. The relief rally intensified late in the week as major blockchain projects announced significant exchange listings, technological milestones, and system updates.
As we head into the next week, investors will likely be keeping their eye on the price action of BTC, as it has been denied by the $6,500-$6,600 range multiple times and currently sits at around 51% market dominance. How BTC acts here will likely be indicative to the next major movement.
Here’s the rest of the week in review:
Binance LCX, a joint venture between Binance and LCX, has announced the launch of an upcoming fiat-to-cryptocurrency exchange. Binance is set to provide and maintain the platform, while Binance LCX manages customer support, due diligence, legal requirements, KYC, AML and government communications. Binance LCX plans to build a team of roughly 10-15 individuals to fulfill the venture in their Lichtenstein office.
Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss, the founders of crypto exchange Gemini, aren’t overly fazed by the recent SEC decision. Instead, while they wait for Wall Street and the SEC to get on board with crypto, the company will focus on expanding its product offering focused on retail investors.
Toshi, the Ethereum mobile wallet, has recently been rebranded as Coinbase Wallet. The Coinbase-developed app has been revitalized with a new name as the service merges into a larger effort to invest in products set to define the future of the decentralized web.
Bitmain, a leading ASIC chip maker and crypto mining hardware manufacturer, has more than $570 million in Bitcoin Cash (BCH) holdings, according to a pre-IPO investor deck. According to the documents, Bitmain has 1,021,316 BCH, which it purchased at an average price of $869. While this represented a total holding of around $887 million at the time of the statement, BCH has since fallen in value to $573, which means that Bitmain has suffered a ~$317 million loss in a little over a quarter.
This week’s market recovery was primarily driven by gains in VeChain (VET), Ontology (ONT), and NANO (NANO). The AltDex 100 Index (ALT100), a benchmark index for the industry’s leading cryptocurrencies and tokens, finished flat this week and currently sits at 79.40.
Other cryptocurrency categories were relatively mixed over the last week. The AltDex Exchange Token Index (ALTEXC), a benchmark index for the industry’s leading exchange tokens, fell over 7% while the AltDex Privacy Coin Index (ALTPRV), which tracks tokens focused on privacy or security, is up around 2%. The new AltDex Masternode Index (ALTMSN), which tracks major masternode cryptocurrencies, dropped over 4%.