On Tuesday (09/14) the Solana (SOL) cryptocurrency had a fatal problem that paralyzed it for more than 16 hours. SOL was heavily criticized, but it wasn’t the only one that had similar problems, even bitcoin had its buggy days.
A near fatal night for Bitcoin
On the night of March 12, after 4 years of Bitcoin’s existence, the main cryptocurrency on the market accidentally split in two.
The fork (also called a fork) was introduced by a change to the database used to synchronize transactions and blocks. Edilson Osório, entrepreneur, developer and early adopter of Bitcoin in Brazil summed up the problem:
It was only after 6 hours that developers, us and miners were able to fix the problem, which caused the reversal of 40 blocks in the bitcoin blockchain.
At the time, bitcoin was extremely centralized compared to today and the BTC Guild pool could single-handedly roll back the combined mining power of “Bitcoin version 0.7”.
The pool even spoke with Bitcoin Core developer Pieter Wuille, who recommended a consensus with the rest of the community.
“I can single-handedly put 0.7 back to the majority’s hash power – I just need confirmation that this is what should be done,” the BTC Guild stated in a developer chat room.
The hack that made Ethereum go back in time
In June 2016, the young Ethereum network suffered one of its worst setbacks.
The decentralized investment organization The DAO was hacked, evaporating 3.6 million ethers ($50 million at the time) from smart contract portfolios.
The hack was so serious that most developers and miners supported the idea of a blockchain rollback. However, those who did not support the idea were responsible for the Ethereum Classic, seen by many as the real Ethereum.
Solana, BEAM and XRP
In addition to these more famous cases, others such as the Beam cryptocurrency and even the XRP made history. The privacy-oriented Beam cryptocurrency stopped working for 3 hours in 2019 due to a bug creating a block in the blockchain.
XRP lost the history of 32569 blocks, due to bugs and lack of decentralization.
Recently, Solana had to restart its network to get back up and running, coordinating block creators, developers and the community in search of a solution.
What to expect from buggy cryptocurrencies?
Despite the flaws, systems like Bitcoin are seen as more secure than those used by banks. This is due to a number of factors such as open source development, greater transparency in decision making, free audits for all, and strong encryption.
In the case of SOLANA, a cryptocurrency with a “CEO”, decision-making may initially be in the hands of a few people, however, if the network is really decentralized, anyone can make a successful fork.
One such case is the Monero cryptocurrency, which was a fork of the Bytecoin currency code, resulting in the cryptoactive BitMonero. However, Bitmonero was led by developers who didn’t listen to the community, resulting in the Monero fork – currently the most private cryptocurrency in the world.
Bugs and problems will continue in all software created by human beings, the big question is how we should treat them. Should we hide them like banks do or expose them like cryptocurrencies?
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Central Bank of Spain requires cryptocurrency companies to register in the country
The Bank of Spain (BDE) made available on Thursday (21) an electronic form for registering individuals and companies wishing to initiate or formalize operations with cryptocurrencies. The call comes a week after the agency formally sent a notice on the subject to the country’s financial institutions.
According to the BDE, registration is mandatory for companies operating in the cryptocurrency sector, regardless of whether they already have registration with the country’s central financial agency, that is, even banks. Such a requirement could confuse financial entities already licensed in Spain, as they are already directly supervised, Coindesk commented.
“The obligation to register in this form applies to all individuals or legal entities that provide exchange services between virtual and fiduciary currency and custody, regardless of whether they are also registered in other administrative records at the Bank of Spain or other competent authorities”, says a short excerpt from the BDE instructions.
Another point is what clarifies the BDE about the registration of individuals who work in the exchange service in Spain, such as P2Ps. Something that the central bank makes clear is that these actors must register “regardless of the location of the service recipients”. However, both individuals and corporations will have to adapt or revise their money laundering policy.
Entities now have one week to start the registration process and deliver documentation. The BDE advises that “it is advisable to submit all documents complete from the start to avoid delays in processing the order”.
Cryptocurrencies in Spain
About four months ago, the BDE said it would provide instructions and the necessary forms to apply for registration. But the instructions have only just arrived, with just 7 days to go before the registration deadline.
Another point of action by the BDE is the lack of clarity, since the entity works as the country’s central bank, but under the supervision of the European Central Bank (ECB).
The Spanish bank BBVA, for example, already has a bitcoin trading and custody service in Switzerland. CaixaBank, the third largest Spanish bank, is also preparing to explore the cryptocurrency sector with startup Onyze.
This Is What Jack Dorsey’s Cryptic ‘705742’ Tweet Might Mean
A simple but cryptic tweet from Jack Dorsey, Founder and CEO of Twitter and payments firm Square, has sparked a debate about the meaning of the post, and whether the well-known Bitcoin (BTC) advocate has any BTC-related plans that have yet to be announced.
As pointed out by many users replying to the thread, the tweet, saying just “705742,” likely refers to a block number on the Bitcoin blockchain. A block with that number was indeed mined on Tuesday at 20:14 UTC, but it is still unknown what else is special about the particular block.
Been updating block explorer for the last 7 minutes— Katie The Russian (@KatieTheRussian) October 19, 2021
Twitter users were quick to pull up the bitcoin block explorer to see if there was anything unusual about block 705742, which at that point had yet to be mined. However, little out of the ordinary could be found.
Others, meanwhile, joked that the number could be Dorsey’s “[end of year] price target for bitcoin,” or that it could be somehow related to “Moscow time,” – bitcoin slang for the value of 1 USD in satoshis.
Speculating further, one user on Reddit suggested that the block number could be the first block to be mined by a new mining system that Dorsey has proposed.
“Maybe the first block that Square mined as part of their [research & development] for a potential public mining platform,” the user wrote, before adding that it looks like the wallet that received the block reward already has both in and outbound transactions worth almost USD 2bn. “Seems like a plausible volume for Square/Cashapp,” the user added.
However, according to various Bitcoin blockchain explorers, the block in question included 2,787 transactions and was actually mined by the BTC.com pool. Moreover, the block was mined almost an hour after the tweet was published.
In either case, as reported, the latest tweet from the Twitter CEO followed another thread from last Friday, where Dorsey said that Square is considering building “a bitcoin mining system based on custom silicon and open source.”
“Mining needs to be more distributed” and it “should be as easy as plugging a rig into a power source,” Dorsey wrote, asking his followers what the biggest barriers are for people who want to run miners.
Facebook Finally Launches Digital Currency Wallet Novi but Senators Want to Close This Project
Amid the Facebook Novi launch, some federal legislators want the social media giant to discontinue the project.
Facebook Inc (NASDAQ: FB) has launched the pilot phase of its digital currency wallet Novi in the US and Guatemala using stablecoin Paxos. Facebook finally launches Novi and is going with Paxos’ USDP after its own native crypto Diem failed to secure regulatory approval. Furthermore, the social media giant heralded the pilot launch in a blog post on Tuesday.
Novi’s pilot launch is more than two years after it was first announced. The wallet will facilitate fast, secure, and free fund transfers between users via mobile smartphone apps. However, all users must register with government-issued identification.
For now, Paxos’ stablecoin will serve as Novi’s transactional currency, while powerhouse exchange Coinbase will provide custodial services. According to David Marcus, head of Facebook’s Novi wallet, this pilot phase will, “test core feature functions, and operational capabilities in customer care and compliance.” Furthermore, it will test the viability of stablecoins as a valid and sustainable form of payment.
Facebook Launches Novi to the Disapproval of US Congress
Amid the Facebook Novi launch, some federal legislators are calling for the social media giant to discontinue the project. Senate Democrats addressed a letter to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg on Tuesday questioning the company’s credibility with crypto. In their own words, Facebook “cannot be trusted to manage cryptocurrency”. The senators base this conviction on the social media company’s past inadequacies in handling cyber risks and keeping consumers protected. Signed by Senators Brian Schatz, Sherrod Brown, Elizabeth Warren, and others, the letter read:
“Facebook is once again pursuing digital currency plans on an aggressive timeline and has already launched a pilot for a payments infrastructure network, even though these plans are incompatible with the actual financial regulatory landscape — not only for Diem specifically, but also for stablecoins in general.”
Part of the Congress letter to Facebook further states:
“We urge you to immediately discontinue your Novi pilot and to commit that you will not bring Diem to market.”
Facebook responded to the Senators’ query through a spokesperson for Novi, suggesting that the company would address the issues raised therein.
Facebook Has a Long-Running History with Federal Lawmakers over Its Operational Practices
In recent times, Zuckerberg and Facebook have locked horns more frequently with Congress. Back in 2019, Congress summoned the Facebook CEO to provide testimony on the Diem project (then called Libra). Zuckerberg’s summoning was the culmination of weeks of tussling, between Facebook and the federal lawmakers, who were skeptical of the project. In addition, the Zuckerberg hearing came just a year after Facebook’s Cambridge Analytica scandal. This may have been another reason federal legislators were agitated against the company.
Another recent red flag raised against Facebook was earlier this month from whistleblower Frances Haugen. Haugen appeared before the Senate Commerce Committee to testify on the threat Facebook posed to users. Some of these include the usage of Facebook itself and other affiliated services, such as photo and video-sharing behemoth Instagram.