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Latest phishing attempt on OpenSea, here’s what investors need to be wary of

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Latest phishing attempt on OpenSea, here’s what investors need to be wary of

OpenSea, one of the largest NFT marketplace saw an unprecedented surge since its inception. That said, this rise saw different hiccups on the way that did hinder its growth.

Why always me?

The official OpenSea Discord hacked and posted a link to a phishing site in partnership with YouTube. Scammers hacked the main OpenSea Discord server and started publishing fake collaboration announcements. This was followed by a link to a free version of the “YouTube Genesis Mint Pass.”

It read:

“We have partnered with YouTube to bring their community into the NFT Space, and we’re releasing a mint pass with them that will allow holders to mint their project for free along with getting other insane utilities for being a holder of it.”

The announcement further gave more details as highlighted by Wu blockchain, a famed news agency on 6 May tweet, to highlight this incident.

The official OpenSea Discord was hacked and posted a link to a phishing site in partnership with youtube. On April 1st, a large number of blue-chip NFT DISCORDs were hacked and posted phishing links. pic.twitter.com/uDbNklIgn3

— Wu Blockchain (@WuBlockchain) May 6, 2022

As per the official announcement, the team confirmed this incident. ‘We are currently investigating a potential vulnerability in our Discord, please do not click on any links in the Discord.’

After several tweets in regards to the incident, PeckShield confirmed that the Discord channel of the NFT marketplace had been exploited.

#PeckShieldAlert #phishing @opensea discord is exploited, youtubenft[.]art is the phishing site. Do *NOT* fall prey to it! https://t.co/RAcRjEfuub pic.twitter.com/rjqMpTnpjW

— PeckShieldAlert (@PeckShieldAlert) May 6, 2022

Although, there’s no official confirmation whether anyone fell prey to the scam. But, the event did create major concerns- here’s why. The giant NFT marketplace was exploited earlier this year as well. Reports claimed that the exploiter swiped $1.8 million worth of digital art. The company later promised to reimburse all affected users.

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Overall, the end of 2021 and early 2022 saw the marketplace breaking record after record in terms of monthly volumes and NFTs sold. But things have been going downhill since then.

Be careful 

Sadly, these kinds of attacks persist in the NFT space and some individuals continue to fall for them. The number of funds flowing into NFT projects made it a prime target for hackers. Clearly, they have had a lucrative time of it and so employ these tactics.

Shubham is a full-time journalist at AMBCrypto. A Master’s graduate in Accounting and Finance, Shubham’s writings mainly focus on crypto-regulations across the United States and Europe. Also, a die-hard Chelsea fan #KTBFFH.

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Analysis

These indicators show how the equities sell-off is influencing crypto prices to fall down

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These indicators show how the equities sell-off is influencing crypto prices to fall down

Bitcoin · Ethereum › Analysis

US Equities correlations with cryptocurrencies is at an historic peak while most BTC holders are holding at a loss

3 min read

Updated: May 20, 2022 at 4:05 am

Cover art/illustration via CryptoSlate

Cryptocurrencies experienced on May 10 a large market crash, losing over 10% in a single day of most of the coins. This is the second time in 2022 that most cryptocurrencies have suffered a price loss of over 10%. Over the last month, BTC has accumulated a 23.57% loss while Ethereum has a 26.32%. Meanwhile, US equities suffered slightly more moderated losses: S&P 500 a -11.07% while Nasdaq 100 a -14.93%:

Price performance comparison with US equities according to IntoTheBlock Capital Market Insights.

As seen in the chart above, cryptocurrencies continue experiencing worse sell-offs than capital markets. The actual macro context of rising interest rates leads to most investors becoming averse to risky assets, which cryptocurrencies are due to their nature of highly volatile price performance.

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The origins of the May 10 price drop came from US equities markets turning back on their short-lived recovery of last week. As has been seen in the previous months, the 30-day correlation between the cryptocurrencies markets and US equities indexes continues to grow, and this week achieved an all-time high for both BTC and ETH, with around 0.9 points both for S&P 500 or Nasdaq 100:

Correlation Matrix with US equities according to IntoTheBlock Capital Market Insights.

A correlation coefficient close to 1 implies a strong positive correlation between the two prices, meaning that the price of BTC or ETH and these indices have a highly statistically significant relationship, so they will tend to move in the same direction. Understanding how these relationships evolve is essential to understanding how macro markets affect the cryptocurrency market and where to look for leading indicators of crypto price movements.

It is valuable to look internally at how crypto holders are reacting to the recent price moves despite external factors. Bitcoin continues dominating the crypto market, so it is worth looking at what its on-chain data shows us.

As studied before, investors are sensitive to react when their investments turn around and stop being in a profiting position. BTC is recently reaching a critical position, where almost half (47.8%) of the addresses holding BTC would be losing money if they would sell at current prices. This is something not seen since the Covid crash of March 2020:

BTC Historical In/Out of the Money according to IntoTheBlock Bitcoin Indicators.

This indicator that provides the variation of holders’ profits over time also shows the percentage of addresses that would have made money or lost money if they had sold at a particular time. Addresses are classified based on if they are profiting (in the money), breaking even (at the money), or losing money (out of the money). 

Addresses are a good approximation to single investors, although there is always a chance that a small minority of users are using several addresses. If we look at how long the BTC investors have been holding, we can see that the vast majority (26.74M addresses) have been holding BTC for more than a year. A metric with no signs of slowing down so far (blue line): 

BTC Addresses by Time Held according to IntoTheBlock Bitcoin indicators.

This depicts how the amount of BTC holders with a long-term perspective grows despite the recent market turmoil and crypto’s weak price performance. It is quite the opposite for short-term holders (classified as Traders, orange line in the chart): their number increases when significant price movements occur, and speculation fuels the whole ecosystem.

After the worst start of the year for US equities in 83 years, it remains open to question if the current market situation could be presenting an attractive buying opportunity for those looking to the long term. Crypto’s next price moves will undoubtedly be heavily influenced by what US equities do, although so far, at least the majority of BTC holders remain unfazed.

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DeFi

Ethereum dev reveals date for ‘Merge’ testnet

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Ethereum dev reveals date for ‘Merge’ testnet

Ethereum › ETH 2.0

Following the disappointment of delays to the Merge last month, devs have announced a testnet date.

2 min read

Updated: May 20, 2022 at 4:23 am

Cover art/illustration via CryptoSlate

In a significant breakthrough for Ethereum, the Ropsten public testnet is scheduled for the “Merge” next month.

The “Merge” refers to merging the current Proof-of-Work (PoW) chain with the beacon chain Proof-of-Stake (PoS) system. It signals an end to PoW on Ethereum, leading to a new, more scalable, sustainable, and environmentally friendly future.

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According to Core Dev @preston_vanloon, the rollout is scheduled for June 8.

Ropsten testnet is getting merged on June 8!

Merging Ropsten is a huge testing milestone towards Ethereum’s mainnet merge later this year. 🎉 https://t.co/X7eLIMA72g

— prestonvanloon.eth @ Permissionless (@preston_vanloon) May 18, 2022

Ethereum

Ethereum devs previously said the mainnet Merge would happen in June, but in April, dev Tim Beiko announced on Twitter that the upgrade is being delayed to late 2022.

“It won’t be June, but likely in the few months after. No firm date yet, but we’re definitely in the final chapter of PoW on Ethereum.”

Beiko’s announcement was met with debate amongst the Ethereum community about when the Merge would happen. Based on code review and running test nodes, an unnamed pool operator gave a guestimate of early 2023.

Others — including the founder of Week in Ethereum News, Evan Van Ness — said the Merge was off schedule rather than delayed. Van Ness said switching over to PoS requires coordinating with “the bomb,” which is notoriously difficult to predict due to the volatile nature of hashrate and price.

The bomb refers to a process that makes mining progressively more challenging and more unprofitable over time. It is considered a transition phase to ween miners off the network to be replaced by validators under a PoS system.

All systems go

Van Ness added that the delay, which isn’t a delay, will be several weeks and not early 2023 as some had predicted. Given that the testnet Merge is scheduled for June 8, Van Ness’ call was proven accurate.

According to Van Loon, the testnet is a significant step forward to the mainnet Merge later this year.

“Merging Ropsten is a huge testing milestone towards Ethereum’s mainnet merge later this year.

Barring the discovery of critical bugs, the Merge will finally roll out in Q3/Q4. But no firm date is known at this time.

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Altcoins

Is Solana [SOL] NFT market in trouble? Here’s what you should definitely know

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Is Solana [SOL] NFT market in trouble? Here’s what you should definitely know

The crypto market has been reeling under bearish pressure for quite some time now. But a few altcoins have defied the current market structure. One such alt was Solana. In the last seven days, SOL was up by 16.06%. However, there still remain concerns related to some of its on-chain metrics.

What’s up with Solana?

The Solana NFT market seemed to be cruising as it entered May. With a very productive April, the NFT markets were also expected to boom through the mid-season. In fact, the NFT volume on Solana reached its all-time high at $446 million. The high- lofty expectations were brought down with the Terra crash. Consequently, Solana has not been able to maintain the high NFT sales with volume drying down after the Terra debacle.

Source: Santiment

The Solana TVL in DeFi has also decreased gradually with increasing aversion towards risk assets in the market. At press time, the total value on Solana stood at $4.22 billion which is the lowest since September 2021.

Interestingly, the Solana TVL stood at $11.22 billion at the start of the year. This means a massive loss of more than 60% has taken place indicating the worrisome state of the market.

Source: The Block

While NFT sales and DeFi TVL are expected to grow as the market stabilizes, network issues continue to persist on Solana. Notably, co-founder Anatoly Yakovenko recently proposed changes to fix network congestion.

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Solana releases the testate

After seeing network issues persist on the blockchain, the Solana Foundation released updates to fix the issues. Anatoly Yakovenko announced the features of the v1.10.15 testnet on Twitter. He believes, the latest testnet can significantly curb the transaction throughput issues at ease and radically improve the network.

The testnet is a threefold upgrade process allowing users to improve the network experience through a series of changes. The first upgrade is access to Quick UDP Internet Connection (QUIC) which will lead to a reduced latency on the network.

The second upgrade is the implementation of stake-weighted transactions “that should prevent unstaked or staked bots from eating up all the bandwidth.”

However, this implementation is still in its “rudimentary” stage and “will take time to get right.” The last upgrade is releasing fee prioritization for users. This is another upgrade in its early stages. The Foundation still wants to make sure that this feature does not lead to higher fees for all network users.

Kanav is a journalist at AMBCrypto. He has a Masters in Media and International Conflict and is interested in areas of digital society, crypto developments in the political sphere and the socio-cultural impact of a crypto-society.

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