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Articles by Anthonia Isichei

Polkadot (DOT) Soars 15% to New All-time High In Anticipation for Parachain Auctions

November 1, 2021

Heterogeneous multichain blockchain network Polkadot revealed the successful passage of a proposal to enable registration and crowd loans for developers. The network’s native token – DOT – is recording a new all-time high surpassing the $50 mark in response to the news.
Polkadot Council Approves Proposal
The Polkadot team announced the news via the official Twitter handle on Monday (November 1, 2021). According to details shared on the Polkassembly platform, a network upgrade proposal that would allow developers to register parachains and seek crowdloan funding for projects successfully passed the Polkadot Council.
The latest development comes less than a month after Polkadot announced that its parachains are ready to launch, with November 11, 2021, set as the date for the

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Vitalik Buterin Criticizes El Salvador President’s Mandatory Bitcoin Adoption Policy

October 10, 2021

Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin spoke out against President Nayib Bukele’s compulsory bitcoin usage for merchants and businesses, saying it was against cryptocurrency’s “ideals of freedom.”
Buterin commented in response to a Reddit article titled “Unpopular opinion: El Salvador President Mr. Nayab (Nayib)  Bukele should not be praised by Crypto community.”
The Ethereum co-founder did not fail to call out “Bitcoin Maximalists,” whom he believed praised the El Salvadoran President’s move without criticism.

“Shame on everyone (ok, fine, I’ll call out the main people responsible: shame on Bitcoin maximalists) who are uncritically praising him.”

Buterin further said Bitcoin maximalists were easy to please if a person in a position of authority did something or spoke in

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Binance Adds Former IRS-CI Expert to Head Global Intelligence and Investigations

September 30, 2021

The world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, Binance, continues to employ high-profile investigators as part of efforts to boost the company’s compliance measures.
New Audit and Investigations Lead for Binance
In an official press release on Thursday (September 30, 2021), Binance announced that Tigran Gambaryan will be the company’s new VP of Global Intelligence and Investigations. Gambaryan’s hire comes after working 10 years as a Special Agent with the US Internal Revenue Service.
According to the announcement, Gambaryan’s new position “will focus on external and internal investigations to prevent threats and financial losses.” In addition, the audit and investigations team, which will be co-headed by Jimmy Su, Binance’s Chief Security Officer, will also work with

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Axie Infinity Records Holders ATH: 420% Year to Date Growth

September 28, 2021

Popular non-fungible token (NFT) gaming platform Axie Infinity continues to see increased adoption from users, following exponential growth in the number of wallet addresses.
Axie Sees Surge in Address Holders
According to data provided by IntoTheBlock on Tuesday (September 28, 2021), Axie Infinity Shards (AXS) ownership is on the rise, with 17,480 address holders. This figure represents a new all-time high (ATH) and a 420% increase year-to-date (YTD). Meanwhile, this growth is indicative of the rising popularity of Axie Infinity and play-to-earn non-fungible token (NFT) gaming.
Back in July, CryptoPotato reported that the value of the AXS token skyrocketed nearly 400% within one month, leading to a market capitalization of over the $1 billion mark. Later in August, AXS

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Netflix Set to Premier Documentary About QuadrigaCX CEO in 2022

September 23, 2021

American online streaming giant Netflix is preparing to release a documentary, which focuses on the death of Gerald Cotten, founder and CEO of the now-defunct Canadian cryptocurrency exchange, QuadrigaCX.
Netflix made the announcement via Twitter on Thursday (September 23, 2021), with the documentary titled “Trust no One: The Hunt for the Crypto King.”
According to the synopsis, a group of QuadrigaCX investors who have become investigators will seek to uncover the suspicious death of Cotten and also the 250 CAD million belonging to investors that was allegedly stolen by the CEO.

THE PUPPER MASTER: HUNTING THE ULTIMATE CONMANThis three-part series coming in January tells the insane story of an audacious conman who was convicted in 2005. Then, in a shocking twist, the story

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EY Taps Polygon Network to Improve Enterprise Clients’ Experience 

September 18, 2021

Major multinational professional services company Ernst & Young (EY) announced the adoption of the Polygon protocol for the deployment of its blockchains to provide faster transactions and lower costs for its enterprise clients who transact on the Ethereum mainnet.
EY Clients Can Now Access Polygon Network
The “Big Four” consulting firm stated in the press release from earlier this week that it has integrated its flagship blockchain services such as EY Blockchain Analyzer and EY OpsChain into Polygon’s permissionless commit chain, making it easier for clients to access the latter’s network.
Increased transactions happening on the Ethereum network have led to congestion and higher costs. Meanwhile, EY believes that connecting to Polygon’s commit chain solutions will provide

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Fake News of Walmart Adopting Litecoin Causes Crypto Markets to Pump and Dump Billions in Minutes

September 13, 2021

The entire cryptocurrency market pumped when news that the US-based e-commerce giant Walmart, has inked a partnership deal with Litecoin to enable its customers to make payment with LTC broke out. Unfortunately, the news appeared to be fake, and the market dumped subsequently.
According to the fake press release on Monday (September 13, 2021), Walmart shoppers would have soon been able to start making payments with LTC across all eCommerce stores.
The story was quickly picked up by major news outlets, including Reuters and CNBC, which, ironically, had this in the body before editing it out:
“It was not immediately clear if the news release was actually authentic.”
Interestingly enough, the sites that picked up the story failed to notice that the impostor credited the press

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Buying The Dip: MicroStrategy Purchased $240M Worth of Bitcoin

September 13, 2021

Business intelligence company MicroStrategy, spearheaded by Michael Saylor, has purchased over 5,000 bitcoin worth $242.9 million. Thus, the firm’s total BTC holdings have increased to over 114,042.
MicroStrategy founder and CEO Michael Saylor announced the latest bitcoin purchase via Twitter on Monday, September 13th. According to the executive, the business intelligence firm purchased 5,050 BTC, at an average price of approximately $48,099 per bitcoin.

MicroStrategy has purchased an additional 5,050 bitcoins for ~$242.9 million in cash at an average price of ~$48,099 per #bitcoin. As of 9/12/21 we #hodl ~114,042 bitcoins acquired for ~$3.16 billion at an average price of ~$27,713 per bitcoin. $MSTR
— Michael Saylor⚡️ (@michael_saylor) September

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IOTA Foundation Selected to Participate in Europe’s Blockchain Infrastructure Project

September 8, 2021

The non-profit IOTA Foundation is among the seven projects chosen by the European Commission to partake in the first design phase of the European blockchain initiative.
A Milestone for IOTA
IOTA made the announcement in a blog post published on Tuesday (September 7, 2021). According to the blockchain project, IOTA would be involved in the initial stage of the pre-commercial procurement (PCP) process for the European Blockchain Services Infrastructure (EBSI).
The EBSI is a network of nodes designed to improve cross-border services across Europe between enterprises, governments, and citizens, using blockchain technology. The goal is to boost trust and efficiency in EU transactions while also reducing Europe’s environmental impact and support the expansion of tech hubs and

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Bitcoin Price to Hit $100,000 by End of 2021: Chainalysis CEO

September 4, 2021

The CEO of blockchain forensics firm Chainalysis is optimistic that the bitcoin price will rise above $100,000 before the end of 2021.
$100k by December 2021
In a Bloomberg interview on Thursday (September 3rd, 2021), Michael Gronager, who is also the co-founder of cryptocurrency exchange Kraken, asserted that bitcoin and the cryptocurrency market, in general, are still in a bull run state.
Earlier in August, Kraken CEO Jesse Powell noted that the market was still in the early bull cycle. Speaking on bitcoin’s price prediction at the time, Powell said
“We could see $100,000 plus per coin late this year, early next year.”
Meanwhile, the Chainalysis CEO seemed to agree with Powell’s BTC price prediction, when asked if he believed bitcoin’s value could skyrocket to over $100K

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Citi Awaits Regulatory Approval to Start Trading Bitcoin Futures on CME: Report

August 24, 2021

US multinational investment banking giant Citigroup is reportedly considering trading bitcoin futures, stating that it has witnessed an increased interest in BTC from its institutional clients.
CME Looking to Trade CME Bitcoin Futures
According to a report by CoinDesk on Tuesday (August 24th, 2021), an anonymous source within the bank revealed that Citi is working on receiving the regulatory green light to begin trading bitcoin futures on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME).
A statement via an email from a Citi spokesperson to the media outlet reads:

“Given the many questions around regulatory frameworks, supervisory expectations, and other factors, we are being very thoughtful about our approach. We are presently considering products such as futures for some of our

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MicroStrategy Acquires Nearly 4,000 Bitcoin for $177 Million

August 24, 2021

The US-based NASDAQ-listed business intelligence company MicroStrategy continues with its bitcoin acquisition spree, as the company recently purchased over 3,900 BTC. Consequently, the firm now holds nearly 109,000 bitcoins in total.
Tweeting on Tuesday (August 24th, 2021), MicroStrategy CEO Michael Saylor revealed that the firm has added 3,907 bitcoin to its stash, bought at an average price of approximately $45,294 per BTC.
According to Saylor, the bitcoin accumulated by the business intelligence giant cost approximately $177 million. The CEO said that the fund was gotten from proceeds made from ATM facility sales.
Subsequently, the current purchase brings the total number of BTC held by MicroStrategy to 108,992.
The latest development is a testament to Michael Saylor’s

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Substack Debuts Bitcoin Subscription Payments via the Lightning Network

August 23, 2021

San Francisco-based online publishing platform Substack has enabled support for bitcoin payments for subscriptions to publications through the use of the Lightning Network.
Substack has collaborated with OpenNode, a bitcoin payment processor, for the BTC payment option. OpenNode made the announcement via a press release on Monday (August 23rd, 2021).
With the latest development, readers would be able to pay with BTC for subscriptions on the Substack platform. However, this new payment option is available for a select number of cryptocurrency-focused publications.
Furthermore, the online publishing company will accept the primary digital asset both on-chain and on the Lightning Network, thereby making payments cheaper and faster.
OpenNode’s co-founder and CTO João Almeida

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CEO of Bitcoin Mixer Pleads Guilty to Laundering $300M in BTC

August 22, 2021

The owner of Bitcoin mixer Helix and resident of Ohio, Larry Dean Harmon, pleaded guilty to a one-count conspiracy to launder monetary instruments. Previously, US prosecutors alleged that the Bitcoin mixer laundered over $300 million.
Bitcoin Mixer Operator Pleads Guilty
Harmon pleaded guilty in the United States District Court for the District of Colombia on Wednesday (August 17th, 2021). According to a press release by the US Department of Justice (DoJ), the Ohio resident operated a darknet money laundering service.
The defendant started a bitcoin mixing service back in 2014, which was in operation until 2017. A Bitcoin mixer or tumbler obscures the source cryptocurrency transactions by mixing them with other ‘coins’, thereby making it difficult to trace.
Within the

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This Missouri Mayor Plans to Give $1,000 of Bitcoin to Every Inhabitant – With One Condition

August 20, 2021

The Mayor of Cool Valley, a city in Missouri, is planning to distribute bitcoin worth up to $1,000 to the inhabitants. However, there is a condition attached to such a plan.
Five-Year HODL Condition
According to a report by local news outlet KSDK on Thursday (August 19, 2021), Jayson Stewart has revealed intentions to give each of Cool Valley’s 1500 residents either $500 or $1000 worth of BTC.
Stewart, who also calls the crypto “digital gold,” believes that the cryptocurrency could transform the lives of the city’s inhabitants and make them wealthy.
The Cool Valley mayor further buttressed his reason for the idea, stating that there are people who have become multi-millionaires within a few years by holding bitcoin.

“I have friends whose lives have been completely

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Mastercard Unveils New Start Path Initiative for Blockchain and Cryptocurrency Companies

July 27, 2021

Global payment giant Mastercard has introduced a new Start Path startup engagement program for cryptocurrency and blockchain companies, with the aim of improving innovation and increasing crypto adoption.
Seven Crypto and Blockchain Companies Join Startup Program
In a press release on Tuesday (July 27, 2021) Mastercard revealed that seven cryptocurrency and blockchain startups have joined the company’s new Start Path program. Since the beginning of the startup initiative in 2014, over 250 startups have participated.
The new Start Path program targeting blockchain and cryptocurrency companies would make it safer and easier for institutions and retailers to trade and hold cryptocurrencies. Meanwhile, the seven startups participating in the initiative are Singapore-based

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Tether Executives Allegedly Under DOJ Investigation for Suspected Bank Fraud

July 26, 2021

Tether executives are reportedly facing a probe from the US Department of Justice (DOJ), as prosecutors are looking into the company’s past activities with its banking partners.
According to Bloomberg on Monday (July 26, 2021), the information came from three anonymous sources familiar with the matter. The DOJ is investigating whether banks were aware of the crypto-based transactions carried out by Tether.
USDT is the largest stablecoin by market capitalization. The total number of tokens in circulation is worth over $68 billion.
This fact alone carries worrying notes for the cryptocurrency market if the investigation goes through.
Meanwhile, Tether has been in the crosshairs of US regulators for years. After a long legal tussle between the company and the office of the

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Blockchain Startups Raised over $4 Billion in VC Funding in Q2 2021

July 24, 2021

Most blockchain-based startups have seen funding from venture backers, despite the current cryptocurrency market downturn, recording over $4 billion in Q2 alone.
This massive venture capital backing is in keeping with the established trend of VC funding for blockchain firms as investors look to be part of the new wave of disruption associated with decentralized finance.
VC Backers Continue to Dole Out Funding for Blockchain Startups
According to CNBC on Thursday (July 22, 2021), venture capital investors seem not to worry about the volatile nature associated with the crypto market, especially with the current slump in market prices. Bitcoin, which reached an all-time high )ATH) of over $63,000 back in April, is trading within the $33,000 range, losing over 50% of its ATH.

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Robinhood Says Low Crypto Trading Activity Could Cause Revenue Decline in Q3 2021

July 19, 2021

In its amended initial public filing (IPO) prospectus with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Popular stock trading platform Robinhood revealed that it is expecting its revenue to drop in Q3 2021 as a result of the cool-off in the trading activity of the cryptocurrency market. 
Robinhood Expecting Drop in Revenue
With Robinhood planning to go public this July, the trading app revealed in a revised SEC filing that a decrease in retail trading activity could result in the company recording low revenue in Q3 2021 compared to revenue generated in the second quarter. 
According to Robinhood, the company experienced a surge in trading activity in January and February 2021, which later returned “to levels more in line with prior periods during the last few weeks

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EOS Pumps 10% as Bullish Announces Planned NYSE Listing via SPAC Merger

July 9, 2021

Bullish Global, the cryptocurrency company operating under the hat of the blockchain software firm, has revealed plans to go public on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE).
Bullish made the announcement via a press release on Friday (July 9th, 2021). According to the publication, the firm plans to go public via a merger with a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) called Far Peak Acquisition Corporation.
The alliance between Bullish and Far Peak indicates a pro forma equity value of about $9 billion, subject to adjustment based on the value of crypto assets at the close of the transaction.
There were discussions about a SPAC merger back in June, with speculations that the alliance could see Bullish valued at $12 billion.
While the Boards of Directors of

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Coinbase to Launch a DApp Store After Getting Crypto Custody License from BaFin

June 30, 2021

Germany’s financial regulator, the Federal Financial Supervisory Authority, also known as BaFin, issued a license to Major U.S. cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase to enable its local subsidiary to carry out cryptocurrency custody business in the country.
BaFin announced the news of the approval via an official release on Monday (June 28, 2021). According to the German regulator, Coinbase was the first crypto exchange to get BaFin’s license to operate crypto custody services.
Back in 2019, German lawmakers passed a law, stating that platforms wishing to operate a legal crypto custody service must obtain a license from BaFin. In 2020, there were reports that a minimum of 40 banks already applied to receive such approval from BaFin.
With crypto custody license issuance being

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John McAfee’s Demise a Bottleneck for the U.S. Government’s Asset Recovery Efforts

June 30, 2021

With the death of the eccentric British-American computer programmer and cryptocurrency proponent, John McAfee, the U.S. government could find it difficult to confiscate funds belonging to the tech entrepreneur.
Absence of Death Certificate Stalling Further Process
As previously reported by CryptoPotato, McAfee was found dead after committing suicide in a prison in Barcelona, Spain. McAfee’s death happened a few hours after the Spanish authorities authorized the entrepreneur’s extradition to the U.S.
Meanwhile, almost a week after that, it seems that the U.S. government will have a hard time seizing the tech entrepreneur’s property or assets. According to a Bloomberg report, legal experts say that the recovery process could take a long time.
The likely way for authorities

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PayPal and Visa Lead $300M Funding for Blockchain Capital

June 22, 2021

Blockchain Capital remains a major tech backer in the DLT space with investments in numerous crypto and DLT projects.
Fund V with $300M Funding
According to a press release published on Monday (June 22, 2021), Blockchain Capital has closed funding for its Fund V LP. The capital raise reportedly drew participation from several high-profile backers including global payment giants Visa and PayPal.
Capped at $300 million, Blockchain Capital’s latest fund was oversubscribed likely pointing to the continued appetite for DLT-related funding despite the current crypto market downturn. Apart from Visa and PayPal, university endowments, hedge funds, family offices, and pension funds also participated in the capital raise.
Bart Stephens, co-founder and managing partner at Blockchain

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War on Illegal Bitcoin Mining: Iran Confiscates 7,000 BTC Mining Machines

June 22, 2021

Iranian authorities have confiscated about 7,000 cryptocurrency mining machines. The latest development is in line with Iran’s crackdown on illegal bitcoin mining activities.
According to Reuters on Tuesday (June 22, 2021), General Hossein Rahimi, Tehran police chief, revealed that the computer miners were found at an abandoned factory in Iran’s capital, which was used to carry out illegal cryptocurrency mining activities.
The latest seizure is the largest ever carried out by Iranian authorities. Back in January, the Iranian government confiscated over 1,500 unlicensed crypto mining farms. In the same month, authorities seized 45,000 bitcoin mining rigs.
Iran’s cheap electricity has seen an influx of bitcoin miners to the country. A study by Elliptic, a blockchain and

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Bitcoin Bear Market Fears Sparked by Institutional Outflows and Whale Capitulation

June 21, 2021

Now, on-chain analytics and reports from fund managers are showing significant Bitcoin outflows amid continued crypto restrictions in China.
Multiple Bitcoin Bear Market Signals
In its weekly report for the period ending June 21, 2021, published on Monday, digital asset investment outfit CoinShares revealed $79 million in outflows from institutional crypto investment funds.
This report marks the third consecutive seven-day period to see a negative balance on the flow of institutional crypto funds monitored by the firm for the first time since the bear market of 2018.
Monday’s report likely offers another signal of bearish sentiments in the crypto space, at least in the short term. Beginning in February 2018, CoinShares recorded seven consecutive weeks of outflows from

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El Salvador Considers Paying Workers Salaries in Bitcoin

June 15, 2021

Following the adoption of bitcoin as the country’s second legal tender, El Salvador’s government is discussing if companies would pay their employees in bitcoin.
In a tweet by a local radio station 107.7 Fuego on Tuesday (June 15, 2021), three government ministries were considering the possibility of companies’ workers receiving their wages in BTC. This was revealed by the Minister of Labor, Rolando Castro.
According to Castro, the decision to pay salaries in bitcoin will come after the bitcoin’s legal tender status becomes law. The Ministry of Labour is working with the Ministries of the Economy Finance to analyze the decision.
As reported by CryptoPotato earlier in June, a supermajority of El Salvador’s Congress voted in favor of President Nayib Bukele’s bitcoin plan.

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Central American Financial Institution to Help El Salvador Implement its Bitcoin Legalization 

June 14, 2021

The Central American Bank for Economic Integration (CABEI), an international multilateral development bank headquartered in Honduras, said that it will work with the El Salvadoran government to implement bitcoin as the country’s second legal tender.
According to Reuters, on Monday (June 14, 2021), the executive president of CABEI, Dante Mossi, revealed the bank’s plans at a new conference. Mossi said that the major financial institution would offer technical assistance to El Salvador to assist the country in legalizing bitcoin.
The CABEI head also said that it would create a team in collaboration with El Salvador’s Ministry of Finance and the Central Reserve Bank of El Salvador, the country’s central bank, to help implement bitcoin as a legal tender.
Meanwhile, the latest

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JPMorgan Implies that El Salvador’s Bitcoin Move Has no Economic Benefits 

June 13, 2021

Following El Salvador’s move to adopt bitcoin as a legal tender in the country, Wall Street giant JPMorgan seems not to be impressed by such a monumental decision from the Central American nation.
JPMorgan Comments on El Salvador’s Bitcoin Move
In a recent note to investors, as tweeted by Financial Times correspondent Robin Wigglesworth, JPMorgan commented that the recent move made by El Salvador to make bitcoin legal tender was growth-oriented. However, the American investment bank seemed to imply that the decision by the country had no economic benefit, adding that it could hinder its negotiations with the International Monetary Fund (IMF)
According to a statement from JPMorgan:

“It is difficult to see any tangible economic benefits associated with adopting bitcoin as a

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Crypto Exposure Protocols on the Agenda for Global Banking Regulator

June 9, 2021

The global banking body is seeking stakeholder opinions on the best course of action on the issue of banks interacting with crypto assets. From central banks and other regulators to intergovernmental working bodies, legacy finance gatekeepers seem to be paying greater attention to the emerging cryptocurrency market.
Public Consultation on Crypto Assets
According to a communique issued by the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) on Monday (June 7, 2021), the Basel Committee is turning its attention to cryptocurrencies. The move is part of a wider post-crisis study amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
Detailing its crypto-related plans, the Basel Committee, which is the primary global standard on matters concerning banking regulation and supervision, agreed to hold a

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U.S. DOJ Retrieves Over $2.1 Million in Bitcoin Paid as Ransom by Colonial Pipeline

June 8, 2021

The United States Department of Justice said that it recovered over $2 million worth of bitcoin, which was the majority of the ransom paid by the U.S. oil pipeline giant Colonial Pipeline to cybercriminal group DarkSide.
DoJ Recovers 63.7 BTC
The DoJ made the announcement in a press release on Monday (June 7, 2021). According to it, the department retrieved 63.7 bitcoins, worth $2.1 million, at the time. The operation was undertaken by the Ransomware and Digital Extortion Task Force, a unit created by the Justice Department in April to combat ransomware attacks.
Back in May, Colonial Pipeline suffered a ransomware attack from a criminal hacking group known as DarkSide, thereby crippling the company’s operations. Colonial Pipeline halted operations for almost a week due to

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