Intel has posted a job announcement for a new researcher to join its special innovation projects group to investigate decentralized ledgers, Ukraine will block the Bitcoin accounts of separatists in the country’s east, and more top stories for March 20.

Intel Joins the Blockchain Technology Race, Forms Special Research Group

Seemingly following IBM's lead in considering to adopt blockchain technology, Intel has now posted a job announcement for a new researcher to join its special innovation projects group to investigate the performance, robustness, and scalability of open, decentralized ledgers. According to Intel, the selected applicant will focus on the development of cutting-edge, cryptographic algorithms for improving the robustness and assurance of transaction verification within an open, decentralized ledger.

Ukraine To Shut Down Separatists’ Bitcoin ‘Accounts’

Ukraine will block the Bitcoin accounts of separatists in the country’s east, according to head of the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU), Valentyn Nalyvaychenko. The SBU and the State Financial Monitoring Service will put special focus on cards and bank accounts, while Bitcoin was also listed among the payment instruments subject to control.

Valentin Nalyvaychenko:

“Another aspect of the joint work of the SBU and SCFM, as well as the Ministry of Internal Affairs, where necessary, is the blocking of accounts, cards, various ‘bitcoins’ and so on, where the separatists are trying to funnel money.”

Ukraine To Shut Down Separatists’ Bitcoin ‘Accounts’

Chamber of Digital Commerce to Host Webinar on the Regulation of Cryptocurrencies

The Chamber of Digital Commerce, an authoritative representative for the digital commerce industry in Washington, is organizing a webinar today that will bring together players in the cryptocurrency community and other interested groups together to discuss the future of cryptocurrency regulation. The webinar comes in the wake of proposed rules coming from California, New York and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau or CFPB.

Perianne Boring, president of the Chamber of Digital Commerce on the issue of cryptocurrency regulation, said:

“We’re putting together this webinar to provide a platform for the industry to come together and assess how these proposals may impact our industry. […] During our webinar on Friday we’re discussing the NY DFS proposed BitLicense regulations, CFPB’s prepaid ruling and California’s AB-1326.”

Coinbase Was Vulnerable to Authy 2FA Exploit

Authy, a two-factor authentication protocol used by several Bitcoin platforms – including Coinbase – was prone to a bypass attack, which could give unauthorized parties access to user accounts. Luckily for Bitcoin users, the Authy vulnerability has been fixed already, and this trick no longer works. But it goes to show you how vulnerable these login systems can be when relying on third-party API calls...

Airbitz Invents First ‘One-Touch 2-Factor Authentication’ for Mobile Wallet

Airbitz has developed a way to make two-factor authentication (2FA) “dirt simple” for everyone. The mobile wallet provider has invented a one-step process that merges the functionality of an app like Google Authenticator directly into their Bitcoin wallet. CEO Paul Puey:

“We believe even the slightly technical people will understand the benefits of 2FA. As a bitcoin evangelist, I wanted to recommend 2FA to people, but knew they would be turned off by it. With this level of simplicity, I have no hesitation anymore.”

Airbitz Invents First ‘One-Touch 2-Factor Authentication’ for Mobile Wallet

Changetip to Abandon Centralization, Move Tipping to Sidechain or Payment Channels

Changetip CEO Nick Sullivan has stated that he is trying to find lower trust options for online tipping via bitcoin. After providing an explanation of why Changetip uses off-chain transactions, Sullivan claimed that the company is willing to contribute development resources to finding a solution that brings tipping back to the blockchain:

“[There’s] a tremendous amount of potential [with sidechains], and we’re aligned with [Blockstream] to help execute. We’re willing to donate resources, and we’re willing to use Changetip as a notable first use case.”

Newnote acquires Bitcoin exchange, other assets for US$1.2 million

Cryptocurrency and Bitcoin related software products and services provider Newnote Financial has acquired Canadian based Bitcoin exchange, the CoinZero Point-of-Sale System and ATM machines in London & Tokyo among other assets for US$1.2 million in cash and stock. The deal makes Newnote the world's first and only publicly traded Bitcoin exchange listed on three stock exchanges.

Chief executive officer of Newnote Paul Dickson:

"This transaction positions Newnote as the de-facto leader in the cryptocurrency space in Canada., CoinZero and the ATM network offer our shareholders direct exposure to the primary revenue generators in the digital currency space.”

Bitreserve Tool Lets You Watch Bitcoin Transactions in Real-Time

Bitreserve has launched, a real-time visualization tool to show its users how money is held, used and transferred on its platform. The microsite enables users to filter the results by currencies and plots the data on a 3D interactive globe, offering behind-the-scenes insight into activities. Halsey Minor, founder and CEO, said that he hoped would help more people understand the power and potential of digital money, adding:

"Change money and the unbanked can become banked. Immigrants and the working poor can keep more of their hard-earned pay. Small businesses and startups can compete on a level payments playing field against corporate giants."

OSU Student’s Bitcoin Exchange Doubles Trading Volume During Silicon Valley Accelerator

BitQuick LLC, the bitcoin exchange on which buyers can obtain bitcoin in three hours and that can serve the unbanked, doubled its daily trading volume in the first month of a Adam Draper's Boost VC accelerator program for bitcoin companies. Jad Mubaslat, who started the exchange as an Ohio State University student, said:

“Some key advice [Boost CEO] Adam [Draper] gave us was to hyper-focus on our U.S. market […] Even though the price of bitcoin has increased, the average size of the transaction on our platform remains at US$300. We’re simply gaining new customers.”

An Estimated US$12 Million in Bitcoin Disappears in Dark Market Scam

On Tuesday, the leaders of Evolution - one of the largest online drug markets - shuttered the drug market and ran off with all user funds, an estimated US$12 million in bitcoin. This could even be a major reason the price of bitcoin took a nosedive from around the US$290 mark to around US$255, some say.

An Estimated US$12 Million in Bitcoin Disappears in Dark Market Scam

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