Bitcoin mining hardware manufacturer Bitmain came under fire this week when it was revealed their firmware contained code that could remotely shut down customers mining equipment. The affected miners check in to a central server at a random interval (between 1- 11 minutes) and transmits the miner serial number, MAC address and IP address. The Antbleed site stated that “Even without Bitmain being malicious, the API is unauthenticated and would allow any MITM, DNS or domain hijack to shutdown Antminers globally.” This is the second scandal to affect Bitmain in recent weeks since Greg Maxwell revealed the company had been using "ASICboost" to give themselves an unfair mining advantage of up to 20% over their customers.
The United States Security and Exchange Commission granted the Winklevii another review of their Bitcoin ETF, which was denied during it's first review.
Police in Mumbai arrested 18 individuals involved in the MLM altcorn Onecoin, and seized four bank accounts totaling $2.6 million USD.
Juan Benet (WOT: nonperson) announced he is working on vaporware called "Interplanetary File System" or IPFS which he hopes will allow users of such flaming-tires-in-shitpits as Ethereum and Zcash to access their scamcoins from one convenient location. (archived)
Welcome to the sex teens edition of the Qntra Not Quite News Roundup Xtend (TM)(R). The below events are alleged to have happened, but they are decidedly innocent of newsworthiness.
- Fidel Castro, the scion of a sugar industry fortune, has died of complications related to being 90 years old. Fidel leveraged his priviledged beginnings into a decades long reign as supreme leader of Cuba. As leader of Cuba Fidel was literally the Grinch, as he cancelled Christmas celebrations on the island for the 29 years between 1969 and 1998. After transferring supreme leadership of the island to his brother, Fidel lived long enough to see United States president Hussein Bahamas surrender to Cuba ending the Cold War.
- Wildfires ravaged much of the northern and central portions of Israel. 23 have been detained on suspicion of arson.
- The Green Party in the United States has been raising substantial sums this week under the guise of using it to petition for a ballot recount in the country's recent Presidential election. Jill Stein and the Green Party have raised more than 5 million United States dollars for the effort so far. Stein and the Green Party's presidential campaign only raised 3.51 million US dollars for their presidential campaign. Every time they have approached their fundraising goal they have raised it, under the guise of "expected costs", from an initial 2.5 million dollars to 7 million.
- Various socialist "idea people" are all supposing that members of the Electoral College deliver the United States presidency to someone other than the President Elect.Various appeals are being made to the popular vote, interview out take footage, and the questionable bits of constitutional trivia though the leading sobbing plea against their fellow Americans at the moment still appears to be "muh feels". The Electoral college convenes in each of the 50 state capitols on December 19th.
- On January 6th the newly elected GOP dominated House of Representatives gets to review the decision of the electoral college. The house may confer with the senate to reject the electoral votes of any state. Congress stripped Arkansas and Louisiana of their electoral votes in the 1872 presidential contest.
- The Bill Gates (WoT:nonperson) and Mark Zuckerburg (WoT:nonperson) funded Bridge International Academies in Uganda have been ordered to close for sanitary as well as life and safety violations.
- CNN did not show 30 minutes of pornography to Boston area cable subscribers, but this did not stop CNN from "admitting" that they did show the imaginary pornography.
- The R3 consortium is losing member banks now that the time for paying dues is coming around. One could say they have a Mike Hearnia. The consortium is also sending cease and desist letters to critics suggesting there is existing prior art against R3's fiat patent applications for various inventions. No applications for patent nor declarations of invention have been filed by any representative of R3 thus far in the only jurisdiction that matters.
- This weeks most under discussed altcoin is ModiCash, the failed rupee hardfork Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi advanced which would have rendered 86% of circulating Indian currency invalid. The rules of the program, which are changing several times a day, allow Indians a limited window to exchange their rupees for fully validated ModiBucks. The move has been framed as an effort to combat tax evasion and graft but is turning into an astounding opportunity to profit from tax evasion and graft. One point two billion times, Sorry for your loss.
- Fake news is becoming the meme of the US Democratic Party's loss. Having failed to find the serenity necessary to accept the will of their fellow Americans after having imposed 8 years of Hussein Bahamas, the lefter American left1 ranked all of the scapegoats they could lean on to scapegoat rather than accept their loss. Their list read Rednecks, Russians, and "Russian" fake news. With fears that the rednecks could beat them up, "Fake news" is their enemy number 1. "Fake news" to them means any outlet that wasn't certain Hillary had the election won, for the right reasons, all of they way from April through November 8th.
"Teen horniness is not a crime" – Krista Now
24 cattle died, and 20 more reported injured during a stampede that occurred at an Indian religious festival. Police of Uttar Pradesh said they only expected 3,000 cult members, however 70,000 showed up and started rumors along a packed bridge that led to the disaster. Taking a page from the Bitfinex playbook, the Indian Prime Minister is offering families of the dead 200`000 rupees as SFYL compensation. October has seen an increase in lulz featuring India on the pages of Qntra, with highlights being a telemarketing scam being busted and Preet Bharara's latest antics showing a trend in this behavior for the immediate future.
The India Times reports that the government is calling on banks to assist an attack on thousands of years of cultural tradition by assualting the beloved practice of open defecation in rural India (archived). This call comes despite the fact that many toilets stand unused or abandoned as they are rejected by defenders of this cultural heritage (archived). A report released in 2014 by the World Health Organization and UNICEF states that India has a 50% open defecation rate.
Pankaj 'escrow.ms' Bhardwaj was arrested by police for participating in a fraud ring that used cloned debit cards to withdraw money from other people's accounts at automated teller machines (archived). Under his forum username escrow.ms, Bhardwaj was a member of the "Default Trust" list used to seed the reputation ratings system on Theymos's Bitcointalk forum. He enjoyed a stellar reputation on that forum as evidenced by a thread on that forum discussing recent developments in the life and times of escrow.ms forum escrow, default trust member, and apparent fiat payment card cloner. Escrow.ms is not the first member of Bitcointalk's default trust list to undergo a sudden transition from trustiness to ignominy. Shortly after the creation of the default trust list, inaugural member member TradeFortress operated node.js based webwallet service Inputs.io for only a few short months before 4,100 Bitcoins disappeared from the service on November 7th, 2013.
A massive malware strike affecting three Indian banks and a pharmaceutical company has at a ransom of 1 Bitcoin per machine incurred a total ransom equivalent to multiple millions of United States dollars at fiat/Bitcoin interface reported exchange rates (archived). Apparently only select machines operated by executives had their ransoms paid, but as the source article notes even with the files decrypted malware may remain allowing for easier insertion for future penetrators. Paying ransomware demands is the recovery method officially endorsed by the United States Federal Bureau of Investigation.
The particular piece of ransomware used in this strike goes by the name LeChiffre (archived). It does not propagate automatically and its windows executable needs to be initiated manually. These means that to be deployed on this scale the entire network infrastructure of these enterprises was thoroughly penetrated and brought to submit to the ransomers.
Last week India imposed a 20% tariff on a number of hot rolled steel products to "safeguard" domestic production. According to the Business Standard this has lead domestic producers to drop their customarily negotiated discounts and begin charging customers according to their actual published price sheets (archived). Earlier this month the United States began an investigation (archived) into hot rolled steel products of their own and have just announced that based on early findings they intend to continue the investigation (archived) as imports appear to impose "harm" on US producers in their determination through low prices. The US can be expected to follow India in introducing protectionist tariffs on hot rolled steel soon. As a larger tend expect bureaucracy heavy states struggling to support domestic industry such as the United States and India to begin ramping up their imposition of protectionist tariffs in an effort to keep the remains of their domestic production capacity from being gutted.
Raghuram Rajan, who is the Governor for the Reserve Bank of India, spoke with Indian students in an hour long discussion put together by NDTV and hosted by Dr Prannoy Roy. Fielding questions from the audience, one student asked Rajan for his opinion on Bitcoin to which Rajan stated the security is an issue and that some features of Bitcoin are worrisome. Continue reading