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John McAfee Doubles Down on $1M 2020 Price Prediction for Bitcoin

American entrepreneur and vocal crypto advocate John McAfee has doubled down on his $1 million by 2020 price prediction for Bitcoin.

American entrepreneur and vocal crypto advocate John McAfee has doubled down on his $1 million by 2020 prediction for Bitcoin (BTC).

Taking stock of community sentiment in light of Bitcoin’s recent price fluctuations, McAfee wrote on July 15 that he was “laughing his f—— ass off” at the seemingly overblown negativity:

“Bitcoin is at the mid 10’s and people worry. LMFAO!! Why do you pay attention to weekly fluctuations? Look at the past few months FFS! It’s rising drastically. I’m still positive about my $1 mil BTC price by the end of 2020. Alt coins like MTC and Apollo will rise ten times more.”

As of press time, Bitcoin has indeed lost a round 9% on the week — almost 4% on the day — according to Cointelegraph’s Bitcoin Price Index, and is trading just north of $10,300. 

Yet on the month, the coin’s chart shows a 23% gain — and caps a 100% gain over the three-month period to press time.

Bitcoin 3-month price chart

Bitcoin 3-month price chart. Source: Cointelegraph Bitcoin Price Index

This summer, a Wall Street Journal report had revealed that the dizzying returns from Grayscale Investments’ Bitcoin Trust — which is up almost 300% on the year — had secured its spot as the best-performing fund in the market. 

In a recent interview with Cointelegraph, McAfee predicted than 10 years from now, “there’ll be no fiat anywhere in the world […] everything will be cryptocurrency.” 

A passionate, anti-government crusader whose charisma has secured him a presumably welcome degree of notoriety, McAfee is currently in exile in Cuba., due to alleged U.S. income tax evasion charges — and is running his second campaign for the American presidency.

Fellow Bitcoin bull Anthony Pompliano — co-founder of Morgan Creek Digital Assets — recently predicted the coin would hit $100,000 by the end of 2021.

In contrast to McAfee’s bullish view of alts like Marinecoin (MTC) and Apollo (APL), American broadcaster Max Keiser has predicted that the altcoin phenomenon is over and all value will flow into bitcoin in the latest crypto bull market.

The stakes of McAfee’s forecast could not be higher: two years ago, he pledged to eat his dick on national television if Bitcoin didn’t hit $500,000 by 2020. Follow the countdown here.

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McAfee on BTC, Exile & the US: ‘No Way the Current System Can Survive’

John McAfee speaks with Cointelegraph about Facebook’s Libra, the importance of privacy and why he hasn’t paid U.S. taxes in eight years.

When people outside of crypto think of John McAfee, they think computers, cybersecurity, anti-virus software. But in the world of crypto and blockchain, you think of a yacht in tropical waters, passionate — and sometimes, admittedly, inebriated — tweets on tech and crypto… and an enviable amount of partying. 

When I called McAfee to talk on record, he was sitting at a table outside a cafe in Cuba with palm trees and patches of blue sky behind him. 

We talked about McAfee’s presidential campaign in the United States, his relationship with the U.S. government, cryptocurrency mass adoption and why he’s actually a patriot in exile. 

Olivia Capozzalo: You tweeted recently that Libra is a “grotesque distortion of the original intent of Cryptocurrency — economic freedom.” 

John McAfee: Libra is a universal, digital identification that’s going to be rolled into the cryptocurrency, meaning that everything that you do with that currency can be monitored and traced back to you. 

Now, I’m a firm believer in privacy and even anonymity when it comes to our financial transactions. 

We each have the right to earn a living and to do what we wish with the money that we earn. I mean, if not, then we are still under the control of the financial system we’re trying to escape from.

That is the purpose of digital currency: to give control of currency back to the people rather than to governments and institutions that can control the currency that we use. 

Watch our interview with John McAfee here:

And you need to understand how important currency is. If we don’t have freedom of currency, we don’t have freedom of anything.

To get that freedom, we have to have a decentralized system, and we have to have a system that provides a degree of privacy — because without privacy, then we still are controlled.

The reverse of privacy is a system where everything that you do is known. This is what Facebook has produced.

Please God, we cannot tolerate this. Now, they can produce it, but we do not have to use it.

Please understand that using Facebook is the abdication of everything that we have worked for for almost 10 years. So understand what it is, let them do what they want, but please, God, do not accept it as your standard of currency.

It will be the end of your freedom and the end of your privacy.

Exile in Cuba

OC: So, you’re in Cuba right now. Are you getting a sense of cryptocurrency use there or people’s relationship to crypto or blockchain.

JM: Well, keep in mind Cuba is a very unique country. It’s the only communist country in the Caribbean area — the closest communist country to America. Cryptocurrency has had very little impact on the economy here, on the people. And very few people understand it or know anything about it. 

For safety reasons, I’m trying to keep my mouth shut here and talk about crypto in other parts of the world because I really have no choice of anywhere else to go.

But, I can’t go anywhere. I was run out of America; I went to the Bahamas. I went to the Bahamas because America was charging me with income tax violations. 

Well, it’s true. I haven’t paid taxes in eight years, and I never intend to pay them again. 

To me, they are unconstitutional in America and they’re illegal. 

I went to the Bahamas because they have no income tax at all. According to international law, you cannot extradite someone from a country where the crime that you are extraditing them for is not a crime in that country. So, if you have no income tax, not paying it is not a crime. 

So, the U.S. then manufactured a bunch of other things — murder, money laundering and racketeering — which every country would have to extradite me for.

Their intent was to drop those charges as soon as they collected me and delivered me to America, and then continue to prosecute me on income tax. Now, I don’t want to play those games, so I came to Cuba. 

Cuba has never extradited an American citizen and if they extradite me, it would be an extraordinary exception.

OC: Can you explain your stance a little bit more about income tax? Why do you say it’s illegal in the U.S.?

JM:

Our constitution states very clearly, Congress shall pass no laws to inhibit, restrict or in any way hinder an individual’s ability to earn a living. 

Now, if you’re taking 25% of my money, if you’re making me work for you — the government — for one quarter or one third of the year, I insist that is inhibiting my ability to make a living. 

OC: So, you’re running your presidential campaign in exile. And the base of your campaign and your personal ideals is economic freedom, as you’ve been describing.

But on the other hand, Cuba is actually very low on the economic freedom index. I’m wondering if you see any contradiction in that.

JM: Well, not in the least. Let me ask you who creates that index? Is Cuba asked about it? Do people come to Cuba and actually study what’s happening here? Let me tell you something: This is the most entrepreneurial society I have ever been in. 

Yes, the government does restrict absolutely everything in terms of your making a living. However, there is an undercurrent just below that. There is an economic, entrepreneurial system, which I have never seen before. It’s the same thing in every communist country — in Russia, it was the same. 

So, you know people are making $20 a month, and yet, they’re buying cars that cost $60,000. Now, how do you do that? Ask simple questions, right? They’re doing it by being creative, by adhering to the laws of the government and at the same time, managing to make a good living. 

Keep in mind, America has strangled the Cuban economy for 63 years through embargoes. They can’t get building materials, they can’t get paint to paint their frigging houses. They can’t get parts to maintain their cars. 

One of the first days I was here, I bought a Bic lighter and along the bottom were seven tiny, little holes. And I asked the person: What is this? He said, “Oh it’s been refilled.” They will refill a throw away lighter seven-10 times until the flint wears out. It costs $0.10 to have them refilled, rather than $2 to buy a new one. I’ve never seen creativity like that before. 

So, people all band together to figure out how they can live. Jesus, I’ve never seen anything more entrepreneurial. 

So, do not buy America’s garbage propaganda, because I promise you: All those indexes, they have to pass the U.S. government’s approval. 

They have the airplanes, the bombs, the battleships. They tell the world what to do. They think they are the world’s policeman. So, don’t buy all this s— about being that low on the index. How do you know? Come here and take a look. I promise you: You will be startled.

Running for U.S. president

OC: I want to ask a little bit more about your plan to run for president of the U.S. If you were president, what would the role of cryptocurrency be in the U.S.?

JM: Okay, let me start off by saying this is my second run. I ran in 2016 under the Libertarian Party. I lost to Governor Johnson for the primary nomination. I did not want to win in 2016. 

In 2016, I thought the largest problem America faced was it was lagging behind in cybersecurity. So, I spoke on the national stage for a year about that and that’s all I talked about. 

Now, I could not possibly be president even if I had a platform, even if I wanted to, if I dressed in a business suit and didn’t curse. No matter what I did, I can’t be president. Jesus, God — I’m John McAfee. However, I can certainly run for president. 

So, let’s not talk about what I would do the first day in office. Let’s talk about what I’m going to do while running, which is to raise awareness — not just in the U.S., but around the world. 

I want to educate people about how fiat currencies are their prison and the means that governments use to make a society of slaves.

This is a terrible situation. You have a prison of the mind — certainly in America. And this is what I want to educate people about. We take control first of our economy, of our currency, of our ability to survive, buy food, clothes and shelter. Without the currency, you cannot do that. That is how you’re controlled. So, this is what I’ll be talking about.

McAfee vs. the U.S. Government

OC: Last month, you tweeted about having terabytes of incriminating data on corruption in governments. Could you go into a little more detail about what kind of data we’re talking about and how you got the data? Can you share some of it or reveal some of it?

JM: Let me give you an example of the kind of data. I was in the Bahamas. The U.S. government had manufactured these charges against me to get me extradited from the Bahamas so they could try me for the IRS crimes. The people who operate illegally with the U.S. government in the Bahamas were the head of the police force and the head of the armed forces in the Bahamas.

So, I outed those people. They both had secret bank accounts. I published the name of the bank, the account numbers on the secret accounts. The deposits that came in to these accounts, the dates, the amount and from who and the withdrawals in cash totaling many times their annual salary. So, now I’m wanted in the Bahamas.

This is hard data that I have on almost everybody in the world. Why? Because people tell me everything. When someone finds out a piece of information, I’m probably the first person they gave it to. I have it on everybody, Okay? I don’t want to bring anything down. I’ve never had a problem with the CIA other than that they keep harassing me. 

The CIA is as fragmented as any other element of our government, there are decent people and there are crooks. 

And believe me, I could bring down the U.S. government, like I almost brought down the Bahamian government. 

OC: How does the CIA harass you? Have you seen people following you?

JM: Oh, my security sees them all the time. They alert me to them: “Oh, this car is following us,” and I say, “Well, get the license number.” I have it checked out and it’s always owned by some obscure element of the U.S. government. 

Of course they’re following me — God almighty, I am a rebel. I’m an outrage to the stability of the U.S. corrupt government. Not the whole government, good Lord. There are some decent people there. But unfortunately, there are many indecent people. James Comey of the FBI. Jesus, God. One of the most corrupt individuals in the world — a total scumbag.

I mean there are many people in high positions that can control what’s going on. Now, I haven’t released anything. However, if anything happens to me… absolutely. I’ve got dead man switches everywhere. Within a day of my disappearance or untimely death, there will be every newspaper in the world pouring through more documents than they could have 100 people pour through in 100 years. 

So, no — it will be chaos. But right now, I just want to be able to live happily, try to make a better world for my children and grandchildren and fish from time to time.

OC: It sounds like you’re succeeding at the moment.

Promo in the crypto industry

OC: You’ve openly spoken about promoting projects, and often on your Twitter, you’ll do a video about a particular company. Can you talk a little bit about your vetting process for these companies, given our industry is known for seeing a large number of scams?

JM: Well the first thing I do is I have the company checked out.

I would say 90% of what’s happening in crypto is a scam.

The problem with that is, since it is, trolls and others can point to anything and say, “That’s a scam,” and people will believe it. It’s a very complex and subtle interchange of energies. But the first thing I do is I say, “Are you real? Are you people real?” and have the people checked out. It’s a very trivial thing: Have you ever been in jail? Have you ever run out on another company and left people hanging? It’s simple.

But before I even do that, it has to be a project that appeals to me. 

Then, I do my thing. And people call them scams — or I don’t care what they call them. I’ve checked them out. They’re doing the best they can. They don’t all succeed. There is not a universal success rate for anything in life. But they all attempt it. They all try and they all have good developers and — for whatever reason — if they do not, it’s not because there was a scam or because they weren’t trying. It’s simply because it didn’t work. 

OC: Do you generally invest in the companies that you promote?

JM:  No, I do not. I wish I was in a position to invest. Keep in mind, especially now that the IRS has shut down all my banks, I’m living hand-to-mouth. So, no. But what I invest is my time and my advice. 

I think my advice — you know, coming from a 74-year-old man who’s been in business since he was 23 — is worth something. And people generally take my advice. 

People do stupid things — I don’t know why. They’re looking for the money before they build the product. It doesn’t work that way: You’re not going to sell something that doesn’t exist. Or, they won’t put the product out soon, so they can get the money now rather than making sure it doesn’t have bugs. 

Listen, you have to have a solid product, because if you put something out and you promoted it and it’s got a bug, then everybody fails. You’re dead in the water after all of this work. Wait another two months. Advice like this is just invaluable to young people.

Mass adoption of crypto

OC: What needs to happen for people to use cryptocurrency on a mass scale?

JM: We have to have more friendly user interfaces. You’re not going to get the average plumber and give him a crypto wallet and say, “This 150-digit number is an address. It means something. You must copy it somehow or take a picture of this.” 

No. Please, God. That scares people. We need something that has a name. Frank Smith. Okay, I want to send Frank Smith 50 Bitcoins or five or a fifth or whatever. That’s cool. By the way, I don’t think crypto trading is the end-all for crypto. I mean, that might be the entry point, but the end-all is where we f—ing buy things with the crypto that we have, for heaven’s sake, rather than trading it constantly. But that’s coming… that will come. 

I think in 10 years there’ll be no fiat anywhere in the world. Everything will be electronic, everything will be cryptocurrency. 

In five years, I think the majority of people will be using crypto for the majority of their purchases. I mean, already you can buy houses, cars, almost everything with crypto — some services even. 

You can even buy prostitutes — both male and female — with crypto these days. I think in two years time, we’re going to see a quadrupling of both the number of businesses that accept crypto and the number of people that are using it not to trade, but to actually buy and sell.

OC: But people also need to be convinced that cryptocurrency is better for them to use than fiat currency.  

JM: Here’s an example — and if this doesn’t sell you, nothing will. Let’s say I’m doing business with somebody in England or Germany — in another country — and in order to get started, I’ve got to make a down payment. All right, so I’ve got to get out of bed, get dressed, hop in my car, drive to the bank, fill out a bunch of forms, sign them, get approval from the bank and they will say, “Well, within 24 hours, it’ll be there.” 

Or I can not get out of bed, grab my smartphone — even if I do have to copy and paste a 150-character string — push send and go back to sleep. I’ve got 60 seconds versus an entire hour. 

Which would you rather do? This is one example. Please, God. It’s so superior to our current system that there is no way the current system can survive. 

Bitcoin price predictions

OC: Recently, crypto analyst Mati Greenspan pointed out that there is an 86% chance that Bitcoin will be worth less than 50K by 2020. Are you concerned about the bet that you made?

JM: No, good Lord. Listen, anybody with common sense, and who can add and subtract and multiply, actually can count the total transactions in the world every year. And look at the number of dollars and yen and British pounds and euros and Chinese yuan. So, that’s about $2,000 trillion. There’s only 21 million Bitcoins and actually 7 million of those are lost forever. 

If Bitcoin were the only currency, it would be worth a trillion dollars per Bitcoin. Now, it’s not the only currency.

Take the growth at this point, the number of users and the fact that it’s going to be three times as large by the end of 2020. If it’s not worth a million dollars, then something’s wrong with math. 

I can’t lose this bet. It’s not possible mathematically. Understand, the market is an artificial thing right now. As Bitcoin gets more and more utility, it will be less artificial and more real. And it’s getting that way right now. So, to those that go “nah, that’s impossible,” please go back to school and take fourth grade math — that’s all you need. Figure it out.

OC: All right. Well, I think that’s all I have for today. Thank you so much for your time.

JM: Thank you very much.

This interview has been edited and condensed.

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John McAfee To Roll Out ‘Freedom Coin’ Cryptocurrency This Fall

John McAfee is releasing a cryptocurrency this fall which purports to be independent from fiat currencies, crypto exchanges and traditional backing assets.

Crypto enthusiast, bitcoin (BTC) bull, antivirus software namesake and 2020 United States presidential campaigner John McAfee is releasing his own independent cryptocurrency, according to an official Twitter post on May 29.

According to his website on the announced cryptocurrency, the “McAfee Freedom Coin” will roll out some time this fall. The McAfee Freedom Coin appears to aim for total isolation and independence from traditional currencies, assets and exchanges in an effort to reach “the Holy Grail of cryptocurrency — economic freedom.”

According to McAfee, these are the desired properties of the new cryptocurrency:

“What is needed is a coin disconnected from fiat currencies and from other crypto currencies alike — a coin with zero cash-in value, yet accepted universally … It is not based on any commodity nor is it connected to the value or behavior of any external item or entity. The value of the coin will always be zero in relation to any other currency yet it’s natural market value is free, completely, to grow.”

As previously reported on Cointelegraph, McAfee has said he plans to run for President of the United States in 2020 on a boat in international waters, since he has purportedly been indicted by the U.S. Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

McAfee has reportedly made no secret of his tax evasion, saying that he has not filed taxes for eight years. His presidential campaign is also not a serious bid for the office, but rather a stated attempt to promote cryptocurrencies as a means to securing personal freedom for citizens.

In recent news, McAfee said that he has discovered the identity of the mysterious Bitcoin creator Satoshi Nakamoto, who is purportedly a man living in the U.S. McAfee apparently was planning to out Nakamoto’s identity, but has put his plan on pause per advice from his extradition lawyer:

“The US extradition request to the Bahamas  is imminent. I met with Mario Gray, my extradition lawyer, and it is now clear … that releasing the identity of Satoshi at this time could influence the trial and risk my extradition. I cannot risk that. I’ll wait.”

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Bitcoin (BTC) Can’t Be Less Than $1M In Two Years: McAfee Doubles Down On Crypto Prediction

John McAfee Doubles-Down On $1 Million Bitcoin Call

In late-2017, when BTC was surpassing key levels each and every day, we reported that technology guru John McAfee made a prediction that Bitcoin would hit $1 million by the end of 2020. He put his manhood on the line. And while the cryptocurrency has evidently fallen drastically since then, he recently doubled-down on this ambitious forecast in a tweet. 

Responding to an article that postulated that Bitcoin may hit $400,000 within two years, McAfee remarked that this is nonsensical not because the prediction was ludicrously high, but because it was well too low. In fact, he remarked that “anyone who can add and subtract,” and harness “point-set topology” knows that BTC “can’t be less than” $1 million in two years’ time. In a bid to accentuate his point, he asked, rhetorically, “does no one study math anymore?”

This quip was made seemingly in reference to his theory that Bitcoin’s market valuation will soon be determined by its on-chain statistics, not purely by speculative pressures. And with the number of Bitcoin transactions continuing to swell, cementing that adoption is occurring, McAfee believes it would be hard to argue that BTC won’t naturally move higher with ample time.

And interestingly, some would agree that $1 million is inbound, to some extent anyway.

In a recent interview, Jesse Lund, the head of IBM’s blockchain division, revealed that Bitcoin trading at $1,000,000 isn’t an illogical scenario in his eyes. Fundamentally, he notes that a seven-figure valuation would give Bitcoin $20 trillion in network liquidity, making corporate payments on the blockchain a possibility. While he has high hopes for BTC, he noted that speculators are currently holding back the asset. Lund explained that this subset of investors are “thinking about it wrong,” likely regarding the argument that BTC is much more than a speculative asset, as it can be programmed for a wide array of use cases.

Wences Casares, who is dubbed the “Patient Zero” of Bitcoin adoption, recently released a piece titled “The case for a small allocation to Bitcoin.” The title may sound innocuous, but the information contained in the essay-esque article blew socks off the feet of investors across the industry.

Casares, who heads Xapo, claimed that while Bitcoin has a 20% chance of failure from his perspective, citing the fact that it remains an experiment, he is more than 50% sure that the cryptocurrency will succeed beyond our wildest dreams. He looks to the fact that BTC has existed for 10 years with (basically) zero interruption/immutability concerns, and that Bitcoin has a rapidly growing user base and an active transactional use case. Casares adds that if Bitcoin succeeds it may be valued at a drastically higher price than it is now. As reported by Ethereum World News previously, a BTC that succeeded, in the eyes of the investor, could be valued at $1 million apiece, 200 times higher than current prices, and all this could be accomplished within the next ten years.

With this in mind, he noted that it is nonsensical not to own Bitcoin, calling it a “unique opportunity for a non-material exposure to produce a material outcome.” He added that not owning any of the digital assets may very well be almost “irresponsible.” In conclusion, Casares explains:

In today’s world where every asset seems priced for perfection, it is hard, if not impossible, to find an asset that is so mispriced and where the possible outcomes are so asymmetrical.

Title Image Courtesy of Andre Francois Mckenzie Via Unsplash 

The post Bitcoin (BTC) Can’t Be Less Than $1M In Two Years: McAfee Doubles Down On Crypto Prediction appeared first on Ethereum World News.

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Bitcoin (BTC) Founder, Satoshi Operates from The Eastern Coast of USA, Sleep Pattern Analysis Reveal

Bitcoin BTC

It’s all about Satoshi Nakamoto. The brains behind the world’s most valuable coin in Bitcoin. Exchanging hands at $5,423 and with a daily trade volume of $19,123 million while commanding a market cap of $95,792 million, everybody—even governments and detectives, but more so the blockchain and Bitcoin community want to know who the genius was. Despite efforts and countless hours of detective work, Satoshi has been largely successful in becoming elusive. Fortunately, determined blockchain “detectives” are closing in and Jameson Lopp believe Nakamoto is an individual who coordinated his activities from either the East Coast of the US or From Western South America thanks to his standard sleeping patterns.

We Need Decentralization

Even so, it is for good reasons.
Considering the level of decentralization minus reference figure heads that
other networks so heavily rely for guidance, the absence of Satoshi is indeed a
good thing for the autonomy of the network. After all, before he disappeared, he
kind-off handed over “powers” to early adopters like Gavin Andresen and other developers
he worked with, believers of what he was doing, of what technology represents
and what it meant to roll out a solution that will decentralize the way money
moves around without third parties.

All the same, Jensen has deviated from Satoshi
Vision supporting a splinter group in Bitcoin Cash which recently hard forked
to Satoshi Vision under the guidance of Craig Wright, a controversial and vocal
supporter claiming to advance Satoshi’s ambition.

Factoring in John McAfee Claims

Nonetheless, detectives like John McAfee
are back. John is perma-bull, a technologist and a founder of a successful
antivirus firm widely used across the globe. But that won’t stop him from being
controversial as he has had a few brushes with the law forcing him to operate
from the Bahamas.

 A
few days back, he claimed to know who Satoshi was and as a matter of fact,
would “out” him. That, apparently didn’t go well with Satoshi—whom he claims to
be in contact with. John says Satoshi is furious and unhappy at his efforts to
uncover him, ten years after the first block went live.

Even if this is true, it will no doubt
promise to be a cinematic and even a riveting sequence of events as the whole thing
unfolds. Pinning Satoshi means unlocking the 1 million BTCs under his custody
and that means there is a possibility that all these coins would be somehow
spent, heaping pressure on Bitcoin prices reeling from 13-month slide. Here’s
what John said when he talked with Bloomberg:

“I’ve spoken with him, and he is not a happy camper about my attempt to out him. People forget that I am a technologist. I am one of the best. Releasing the identity of Satoshi at this time could influence the trial and risk my extradition. I cannot risk that. I’ll wait.”

Jameson Lopp Findings

However, new analysis from Jameson Lopp, a cyberpunk and the
CTO of CasaHODL, reveal that Satoshi Nakamoto is an individual—not a group, a
male living either in the US or South America. His study reveal that that
person is not Craig Wright—because at the time, Craig operated from Australia. This
was brought to light thanks to an in-depth study of his sleeping patterns because
after all, timestamps tell a story. Here’s what he tweeted:

“If you assume
standard sleeping patterns then it appears Satoshi resided in eastern North
America or western South America while Wright’s posts line up with eastern
Australia.”

And he Lopp has support from other curious observers:

“You don’t even have
to *assume* standard sleeping patterns for Craig. He lived in Australia during
this time, and the data *shows* he had a fairly standard sleeping pattern.”

The post Bitcoin (BTC) Founder, Satoshi Operates from The Eastern Coast of USA, Sleep Pattern Analysis Reveal appeared first on Ethereum World News.

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Bloomberg: John McAfee Pauses Plan to Out Satoshi Nakomoto’s Identity, Fearing Lawsuit

John McAfee says he is holding back on plans to reveal the real identity of bitcoin’s creator for fear it will expose him to further lawsuits.

American entrepreneur and stalwart crypto advocate John McAfee says he is holding back on plans to reveal the real identity of bitcoin (BTC) creator Satoshi Nakamoto, for fear it will expose him to further lawsuits as he fights potential extradition to the United States. The news was reported by Bloomberg on April 24.

McAfee — who founded the pioneering anti-virus firm McAfee Associates in 1987 — claims his technology expertise has helped him track down the real Satoshi. According to Bloomberg, McAfee said he had communicated with Nakamoto in recent days, alleging that the mystery figure is in fact a man living in the U.S. He reportedly stated:

“My entire life I’ve been tracking people who are the best in the world, and hiding their identity. Finding Satoshi was a piece of cake for me.”

McAfee reportedly further noted that the alleged Nakamoto “is not a happy camper about my attempt to out him.” Bloomberg adds that while McAfee had at first told the news agency he would make his disclosure within a week, he is now holding back over concerns that the move could make him the target of multiple lawsuits.

Himself no stranger to controversy, McAfee has allegedly been indicted by the U.S. Internal Revenue Service (IRS) over self-avowed tax avoidance, and could thus face potential extradition from the Bahamas, where he currently resides.

In a tweet on April 23, McAfee said he was reluctant to wage a battle on multiple fronts, and would thus heed his lawyer’s advice to pull the brake on imminent plans to out Nakamoto:

“The US extradition request to the Bahamas  is imminent. I met with Mario Gray, my extradition lawyer, and it is now clear […] that releasing the identity of Satoshi at this time could influence the trial and risk my extradition. I cannot risk that. I’ll wait.”

As widely reported, Nakamoto’s sudden disappearance in late 2010 has spawned a myth almost as famous as the cryptocurrency he, she or they invented on October 31, 2008 with the publication of the bitcoin white paper.

Parallel to McAfee’s recent claims, controversially self-proclaimed “Nakamoto” Craig Wright has recently published a blog on April 23, alluding to the widespread criticism he has faced in regard to his position and vowing to continue to develop crypto innovations that will place his team “in advance of any other player in the industry”:

“By the end of this year I hope that we will have around 1,000 patents published […] As you have been hiding and calling me names, I’ve been building and creating.”

Bloomberg notes that McAfee told the agency that Wright is emphatically not the man he has tracked and identified as bitcoin’s creator.

As Cointelegraph has reported, McAfee is meanwhile also planning to run for president in the 2020 United States elections as part of his crypto advocacy efforts. In light of his ongoing legal battles, he has pledged to run his campaign in exile from a boat in international waters.

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Research Team Demonstrates Hard Wallets Vulnerabilities, Trezor Promises Firmware Update

Software security researchers have reportedly been able to extract private keys from the Trezor One hardware wallets.

Researchers have reportedly shown how they were able to hack the Trezor One, Ledger Nano S and Ledger Blue at the 35C3 Refreshing Memories conference. The demonstration of the hacks was published in a video on Dec. 27.

The research team behind the dubbed “Wallet.fail” hacking project is made up of hardware designer and security researcher Dmitry Nedospasov, software developer Thomas Roth and security researcher and former submarine officer Josh Datko.

During the conference, the researchers announced that they have been able to extract the private key out of a Trezor One hardware wallet after flashing — overwriting existing data — a custom firmware. However, they pointed out that this exploit only works if the user didn’t set a passphrase.

Pavol Rusnak, CTO of SatoshiLabs (the company behind Trezor), commented on Twitter that they were not notified through their Responsible Disclosure program prior to the demonstration, and that they will address the reported vulnerabilities through a firmware update at the end of January.

Moreover, the same group of hacker researchers also claimed during the talk that they were able to install any firmware on a Ledger Nano S, a leading hardware wallet. While the team used this vulnerability to play the game Snake on the device, one member of the team that found the exploit claimed:

“We can send malicious transactions to the ST31 [the secure chip] and even confirm it ourselves [via software,] or we can even go and show a different transaction [not the one that is actually being sent] on the screen.”

The team also demonstrated that they found a vulnerability in the Ledger Blue, the most expensive hardware wallet produced by the company, that comes with a color touchscreen. The signals are transported to the screen by an unusually long trace on the motherboard, the researcher explained, which is why it leaks those signals as radio waves.

When a USB cable is attached to the device, the aforementioned leaked signals get strong enough that, according to the researchers, they could be easily received from several meters.

Employing an artificial intelligence (AI) software deployed on the cloud, the team has been reportedly able to obtain the pin of the device from a dump of the leaked radio signal from the moment when the pin has been entered.

When asked about BitFi, the hardware wallet promoted as being “unhackable” by crypto advocate John McAfee in July, a team member said that “we only talk about somewhat secure wallets” before concluding that “we didn’t want to use a Chinese phone in this talk.”

As Cointelegraph reported in August, a teenage hacker claimed to have compromised the BitFi device. The producer has since denied that the device has been hacked since no coins have been extracted.

Moreover, also in August, a group of researchers declared to have successfully sent signed transactions from the BitFi wallet, claiming to meet the conditions of the bounty program.

As of press time, neither Ledger nor Trezor have responded to Cointelegraph’s request for comments.

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BitFi Removes “Unhackable” Claims, Closes Bounty Program and Hires New Security Manager.

In a tweet published on the official account of Bitfi, the controversial hardware wallet marketed by Mr John McAfee as unhackable, The development team commented that they would withdraw such claim and at the same time close the bounty program in which 100k USD were offered to every person who could hack the wallet:

“Effective immediately, we are closing the current bounty programs which have caused understandable anger and frustration among researchers. We acknowledge and greatly appreciate[their] work and effort …
Effective immediately, we will be removing the “Unhackable” claim from our branding which has caused a significant amount of controversy.”

The decision to ” retract ” was followed by a change of personnel. The team commented that they had hired a new Security Manager, without mentioning the name of the new expert who would be joining the Bitfi ranks.

The Un-hackable Hacked Wallet

The Bitfi team commented that they acknowledged the existence of “vulnerabilities” but refrained from commenting on the various hacks published on social networks.

Several hackers have been able to exploit different vulnerabilities in this wallet; however, Mr. John McAfee apparently used a pun to avoid paying the various cybersecurity experts for their successful efforts.

From rooting the wallet and running Doom, to effectively getting the passphrase revealed, Mr. McAfee does not give credit to these hackers. Bitfi said these actions were the efforts of an “army of trolls” hired by other companies like Ledger and Trezor.

In a statement to The Next Web, a Bitfi spokesperson commented:

“Please understand that the Bitfi wallet is a major threat to Ledger and Trezor because it renders their technology obsolete … So they hired an army of trolls to try to ruin our reputation (which is ok because the truth always prevails)… All these trolls can do is talk smack all day, but they can’t hack the wallet if their life depends on it.”

Bitfi has been widely criticized for having no security features that make it better than other hardware wallets. After disassembling it, it was found that its processor is a MediaTek MT6580, a brand of inexpensive components. Such news raised doubts about the price of the wallet, which did not offer any special encryption hardware or any sign of an internal cold storage option.

In a final effort to check for security flaws, Saleem Rashid a young hacker managed to film a cold boot attack in which he obtained Bitfi’s passphrase, ensuring that the same attack could be made from an Android device.

So far Mr. McAfee has not issued any comments; however, the Bitfi team assured that they would issue a more elaborate official statement next week.

Girl in a jacket

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