Bitcoin near $2.5k; New Ransomware Appears

After suffering a sharp drop on Saturday and causing a short panic wave among investors, Bitcoin has recovered back near the $2.5k range.  Compared to last week, the USD/BTC price is still lower by $200 – a drop that was naturally reflected in other cryptocurrencies on the market as well. However, current market signals indicate that the steep fall is over, which is good news, although there is still some selling pressure evident on the charts.

In other news this week, Antony Murgio, the Florida man that was charged with operating the infamous Coin.mx Bitcoin exchange, has been sentenced to 5 ½ years in prison, Reuters reports. Murgio, who is 33, admitted he was guilty of operating the exchange which was tied to bank frauds, money laundering for cyber criminals, but also the JPMorgan Chase data breach.

Namely, according to evidence, the Coin.mx exchange was found to have processed large sums of money without a license during 2013-15 by using a credit union as a front, much of which was deposited by ransomware victims. The sentence was half of what was sought by the prosecutors involved in the case, while Murgio had reportedly expressed deep regret during the reading of the verdict.

Buyers Regroup

During the past week since our last update the price of Bitcoin went through a notable change as a strong selling pressure started forming on Saturday afternoon, dragging down the price with it. The highest point was hit on Friday night, when the price reached $2,708.17, while the lowest point was hit on Monday evening, when 1 Bitcoin was briefly sold for $2,329.94

Naturally, trading volume jumped significantly during the price decline and at one point, during its lowest value, even doubled in size. Currently, it is at $1,440,410,000 and going up, but this time the price is following suit. The market cap, on the other hand, is at $41.2 billion.

Our technical analysis shows that the market is now in a strong buying mood, with 10 out of 12 moving averages and 9 out of 12 oscillators showing a buying signal. However, the SMA 100 has also dropped down below the SMA 200 on this time-frame, showing that the downside is where the least resistance is. Thus, if a stronger selling pressure forms, we might see another correction. If not, your Bitcoins should be just fine. So, keep an eye on the market in the next few days, especially during the weekend.

New “GoldenEye” Ransomware Spreads

Not long after the “WannaCry” attack caused global chaos by locking up over 200,000 computers, a new ransomware attack known as “GoldenEye” appeared yesterday. The virus, which is a variation of the “Petya” ransomware, is hitting businesses and government bodies in Ukraine and Russia by locking up their files and asking for a ransom of $300 worth of Bitcoins to unlock the affected computers.

According to CNET, “GoldenEye” is a dangerous malware with dual encryption layers: one that encrypts the hard drive and another that encrypts files in affected computer. Once a system is infected and the malware finishes with the file encryption, it triggers an automatic reboot so that the ransom appears. And just like the “WannaCry” attack, this malware only targets Windows users.

Estimates are that more than 38 million computers on a global scale are now vulnerable to the virus, as it exploits various loopholes even with systems that have already updated their Windows OS. Thus far, over 50% of the targets were based in Ukraine, where government agencies, a power distributor, and financial institutions were attacked on Tuesday morning when the campaign began.

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