Connect with us

Bitcoin

Dark web drug dealer pleads guilty, agrees to help track other dealers

Published

on

En route a world beard growing competition in Texas and caught as soon as he landed in Atlanta in August of 2017, Gal Valerius, a competitive beard grower and cyber whiz from the Brittany region of France, was confirmed to be ‘OxyMonster’.

On Tuesday at a hearing in Miami, he pleaded guilty for helping run a massive online drug market, overseeing the sales of kilos worth of coke, meth, heroin, fentanyl, and oxycodone. Accessing the dark web via TOR browser and using Bitcoin or its cousin altcoins for transactions virtually guarantees anonymity.

Under his plea agreement, Valerius would be cooperating with the Federal prosecutors and Drug Enforcement Administration, in the hope of reducing his life imprisonment sentence in exchange for his insider knowledge.

The arrest, back in 2017, was the end result of an investigation of multiple agencies – DEA, FBI, IRS, Homeland Security Investigations, and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service. He was accused of being a drug kingpin on the dark web, acting as an administrator for Dream Market, a marketplace for illegal narcotics including cocaine, heroin, and methamphetamines, and counterfeit consumer goods and stolen data.

He was traveling with his wife from France to Texas and landed in Atlanta, and upon landing his laptop was seized. The laptop revealed that he was the person behind the moniker ‘OxyMonster’, and also showed that he sat on a pile of Bitcoin worth $500,000.

Furthermore, Valerius was reported to have played the role of moderator on Dream Market, an online platform that allows drug buyers and sellers to anonymously strike deals throughout Europe and the US. It is more than just a marketplace for illicit drugs, providing technical assistance, resolving disputes and posting ratings of vendors on their platform. The authorities were only able to zero in on his identity because of the bitcoin address of ‘OxyMonster’ and analyzing the incoming and outgoing transactions from this address, the Miami Herald reports.

Cybersecurity firm ‘Recorded Futurehasve found that criminals on the dark web are using cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin for their illegitimate business transactions. However, the Bitcoin is much more expensive now, and charges more fees for transactions, than it once used to. This has lead the criminals to opt for Bitcoin’s alternatives, or altcoins, the most popular being Litecoin and Dash, which Recorded Future reports is a digital coin that 30% and 20% of dark web vendors accept, respectively.

Bitcoin

Bitcoin (BTC) Price Weekly Forecast: Slow And Steady Increase Likely

Published

on

  • There was a downside correction from the $10,954 swing high in bitcoin price against the US Dollar.
  • The price is holding the $10,000 support and it could bounce back in the near term.
  • There is a major bullish trend line forming with support near $10,140 on the 4-hours chart of the BTC/USD pair (data feed from Kraken).
  • The price could dip in the short term before it starts a fresh increase above $10,500 in the near term.

Bitcoin price is showing positive signs above $10,000 against the US Dollar. BTC could rise steadily as long as there is no close below the $10,000 support area.

Bitcoin Price Weekly Analysis (BTC)

In the last weekly forecast, we saw bitcoin price holding the key $10,000 support area against the US Dollar. The BTC/USD pair climbed higher and traded above the $10,000 resistance area. Moreover, there was a break above the $10,800 level and the 100 simple moving average (4-hours). However, the price failed to continue higher and topped below the $11,000 resistance.

A swing high was formed near $10,954 and recently the price started a fresh decline. It broke the key $10,500 support area and the 100 SMA. Moreover, the price spiked below the $10,000 support area. Finally, a swing low was formed near $9,903 and the price is currently correcting higher. It broke the 23.6% Fib retracement level of the last decline from the $10,954 high to $9,903 low.

However, the upward move is facing hurdles near the $10,400 and $10,500 levels. Additionally, the price is also struggling to climb above the 50% Fib retracement level of the last decline from the $10,954 high to $9,903 low. If there is a break above the $10,450 and $10,500 levels, the price could continue to rise. The next key resistance is near the $10,800 level.

On the downside, there are many supports near the $10,100 and $10,000 levels. Additionally, there is a major bullish trend line forming with support near $10,140 on the 4-hours chart of the BTC/USD pair. If there is a downside break below the trend line and the $10,000 support, the price could resume its decline.

Bitcoin Price Weekly Analysis (BTC) Chart

Looking at the chart, bitcoin price seems to be consolidating in a contracting range below the $10,500 resistance. It might soon break the $10,500 resistance and continue higher. Conversely, a downside break below $10,000 could start a strong decline in the coming sessions.

Technical indicators

4 hours MACD – The MACD for BTC/USD is slowly moving back into the bullish zone.

4 hours RSI (Relative Strength Index) – The RSI for BTC/USD is currently stable above the 50 level.

Major Support Level – $10,000

Major Resistance Level – $10,500

News Source

Continue Reading

Bitcoin

Bitcoin Price Stays Over $10K as Trader Warns Ethereum Chart Is ‘Ugly’

Published

on

Bitcoin (BTC) price was consolidating $10,000 support on Aug. 23 after successfully shunning four figures during the day’s trading.

Market visualization

Market visualization. Source: Coin360

Bitcoin delivers firm bounce off $10K

Data from Coin360 show a newly strengthened Bitcoin managing to stay above the $10,000 marker, which it had crossed four times over the course of the week. 

Currently in the upper end of a $300 trading corridor, BTC/USD circled $10,200 at press time, as analysts considered the opportunities ahead for fresh gains and less bearish volatility. 

Bitcoin 7-day price chart

Bitcoin 7-day price chart. Source: Coin360

“The trend toward stability, an essential ingredient in a median of exchange, is accelerating Bitcoin’s advancement as a digital form of gold,” Bloomberg quoted its own Intelligence analyst, Mike McGlone, as saying on Thursday.

Sentiment had waned earlier after Bitcoin appeared to be heading broadly lower. Analysts voiced concern about support, arguing a further loss could trigger dives to as low as $7,000.

“In the short term, I’m a little bit cautious,” CNBC’s active Bitcoin bug Brian Kelly told the network on Friday. He added that at future lower levels, the buying opportunity for BTC accumulators was unparalleled.

“When people start saying ‘Is Bitcoin dead again?’ — that’s when I get real bullish,” he added.

Altcoins rally but Ether worries loom large

A Bitcoin breakdown was also still on cards for regular commentator Josh Rager, but for the short term, it was top altcoin Ether (ETH) which presented more worries.

Heading a troubled altcoin market, ETH had circled multi-year lows against BTC before rising above 0.019 on Thursday. For Rager, however, the general trend is down, and he advised not to buy under current conditions.

“If BTC breaks down to $8ks, ETH will follow with a break under $150,” he summarized in a fresh update.

“ETH chart is ugly,” he added.

ETH/BTC briefly outperformed BTC/USD in daily progress Friday, rising 3.7% to $192 against the latter’s 2.8% gains. 

Ether 7-day price chart

Ether 7-day price chart. Source: Coin360

Other altcoins in the top twenty meanwhile delivered even stronger performances, such as Bitcoin Cash (BCH) on 5.35% and EOS (EOS) on 6.8% daily gains. 

The overall cryptocurrency market cap also staged a recovery versus Thursday, rising to $266 billion. Bitcoin’s share dipped slightly to 68.4%.

News Source

Continue Reading

Bitcoin

Crypto Inflation Figures Show Why Bitcoin is King Above Others Like ZEC and XRP

Published

on

The high inflation figures for altcoins like ZCash (ZEC) and XRP are providing yet another basis for the “bitcoin is king” argument.


Indiscriminate Dumping Hurting Altcoin Value

Tweeting on Friday (September 13, 2019), economic and crypto analyst, Alex Krüger highlighted the relationship between high inflation figures and poor price performance for certain altcoins.

Krüger’s tweet was based on figures published ViewBase — a platform that provides information on ‘coin’ dumps.

Whether by fixed or fluctuating schedules, altcoins like ZEC and XRP are showing significantly higher inflation figures. ZEC, for example, currently has an annualized inflation rate of more than 35%.

More than 7,000 ZEC tokens are ‘minted’ per day. This figure amounts to about 0.098% dilution of the circulating supply, much higher than cryptos with daily coin additions via mining.

Earlier in the year, Zcsh disclosed an inflation bug that was capable of creating an infinite number of tokens.

On the fixed inflation end of the spectrum, Ripple releases 1 billion XRP every quarter. XRP has an annualized inflation of close to 30%.

As previously reported by Bitcoinist, some XRP proponents have expressed displeasure with the constant dumping of the token by Ripple.

Earlier in the week, the company transferred 100 million XRP (about $26 million) to former CTO Jed McCaleb sparking fears of more sell-offs.

Bitcoin is Separate from the Rest

For bitcoin, the situation is completely different, with the top-ranked cryptocurrency sporting an inflation rate of 3.97%.

After the 2020 halving, this figure will be cut in half taking bitcoin’s inflation even lower than the current Federal Reserve interest rate.

Compared to bitcoin’s lean inflation figures, altcoins like ZEC and XRP seem like penny stocks whose value is constantly declining.

Bitcoin is up more than 170% since the start of the year while ZEC and XRP have moved over 25% in the opposite direction.

Together, XRP and ZEC are among some of the worst-performing cryptos of 2019. Altcoins, in general, have endured a miserable 2019, continuing the pains for bag holders from 2018’s bear market.

Meanwhile, commentators are calling a new all-time high (ATH) for bitcoin before the end of 2019. The emerging consensus is that the price action for the top-ranked crypto has entered another zone of parabolic advance.

Thus, a move for BTC towards its previous ATH would mean a further leg-up that could go as high as $30,000 in 2021.

News Source

Continue Reading
Open

Close