Lightning Network developers accused of neglecting security
The Lightning Network (LN) team has refocused its priorities, placing less emphasis on security and more actively focusing on providing cash flow for its investors, Bitcoin Core developer Antoine Riard told Cointelegraph.
Last October, he identified a critical vulnerability in the network, and according to him, this new discovery of circular spoofing attacks put the protocol in an extremely risky position. At the same time, Riard decided to leave the development team. In his remarks, he emphasized that he is currently actively working to resolve the identified problem and encourages his former colleagues to follow his example.
Rear also noted that many LN-related projects risk compromising mission and safety in an effort to satisfy investor interests. This, in his opinion, is a classic case of the “tragedy of the commons,” where individuals and organizations with access to a common resource act solely in their own interests, and thereby threaten its stability and preservation.
Binance will stop supporting BUSD on December 15th
Binance will end support for BUSD in its products by December 15th. Paxos, in turn, will provide the ability to exchange BUSD for US dollars until at least February 2024. It is recommended that all Binance users make a withdrawal or convert their BUSD to other available currencies on the exchange.
Starting December 31st, the ability to withdraw BUSD on Binance will be disabled and all remaining funds in BUSD will be automatically converted to FDUSD at a 1:1 ratio. After December 31st, users will still be able to fund their Binance accounts using BUSD and convert to FDUSD until there is further notice of any changes to this process. These measures are being taken to ensure a smoother transition for users and maintain stability in the system.
New Binance CEO
On November 21, Richard Teng, who had previously led the company's regional markets, replaced Changpeng Zhao (CZ) as CEO, and a new phase began for the cryptocurrency exchange. On the same day, Binance decided to pay $4.3 billion as part of a deal with the US Department of Justice. CZ also agreed to resign as CEO and pay a $50 million fine.
The new CEO, Richard Teng, shared his plans in an interview with Fortune, outlining the important task of ensuring Binance's competitiveness in the face of pressure from US authorities. This also implies the introduction of stricter monitoring of the exchange's activities, in accordance with the terms of the transaction.
The new CEO compared Binance to a six-year-old about to start elementary school, and emphasized the need to transform the platform from a "runaway" tech startup to a regular financial company. The new head of the exchange also expressed gratitude for the trust that CZ and the entire team of employees with whom he has been working since 2021 have placed in him. He also stressed that his experience with regulators in Abu Dhabi and Singapore will help him effectively manage the company in the future.
Teng responded positively to a question about introducing a traditional corporate structure at Binance, including a board of directors, headquarters and financial transparency, which will contribute to a more sustainable development of the company.
Animoca Brands plans to become the largest validator of the TON network
The partnership between Animoca Brands and TON covers a variety of aspects, including financial support, research and the provision of an analytics platform for applications within the TON ecosystem. Although the exact amount of investment into TON remains a secret, it can be assumed that a significant portion of these funds were invested directly into the TON cryptocurrency, demonstrating a strong belief in its potential.
Animoca Brands conducted research and selected TON due to its unique ability to drive the development of cryptocurrencies and GameFi. This partnership opens up many opportunities for both companies to innovate and collaborate in creating the future of the digital world.
November holds the record for the number of hacks
Since the beginning of this year, the crypto industry has experienced as many as 296 incidents of hacking and fraud, and this alarming trend reached its apogee in November when losses from such incidents exceeded a staggering $343 million. This is a record figure for the entire current year, as follows from the latest Immunefi report. Compared to the previous month, October, the figure has increased by an incredible 15.4 times, which is a cause for serious concern. The total damage caused in 2023 has already reached a whopping $1.75 billion.
Interestingly, the main target of attacks in November was the CeFi sector, with 53.8% of the total losses. Hacks of centralized platforms such as Poloniex, HTX and Kronos Research are largely responsible for this growth, compared to DeFi. Hacker attacks were the leading cause of losses amounting to more than $335.5 million (accounting for 97.8% of total losses), while fraud accounted for a meager $7.5 million (2.2%).
If we talk about specific blockchains, the leadership in the number of incidents and damage was confidently taken by BNB Chain with 22 incidents and 53.7% of damage. Ethereum also did not stand aside, with 12 incidents and 29.3% losses. These numbers highlight the need for greater security efforts in the world of cryptocurrencies and blockchains.
Sam Altman returns to OpenAI as CEO
Sam Altman officially announced his return to OpenAI as CEO and presented the company's plans for the future. Altman credited Microsoft executives for their support during a difficult time, and an unidentified representative from the tech giant will join the board as a "non-voting observer."
OpenAI's top priority remains maintaining its "plan to research and invest in comprehensive security efforts." In addition, the company strives to improve its products so that users can experience the benefits and potential of artificial intelligence. Altman also emphasized the importance of cultivating a board with diverse perspectives.
The chairman of the new board, Bret Taylor, emphasized that management's primary focus will be on strengthening OpenAI's enterprise infrastructure. There will be a qualified and diverse board of distinguished individuals whose collective experience will reflect the broad spectrum of the company's mission.
Major bookmaker DraftKings makes money on Polygon
In early 2022, bookmaker DraftKings took over the role of Polygon network validator and set a 100% MATIC staking fee, as noted by a CoinDesk investigation.
In March, Polygon Labs announced a major step in the development of its technology infrastructure by entering into a strategic agreement with DraftKings. As part of this deal, the betting platform began using one of its network validators, marking the first time that a large public company was actively involved in blockchain governance. However, at that time, Polygon representatives kept silent about an important detail - the allocation of millions of MATIC DraftKings tokens for use.
According to blockchain data, in October 2021, after entering into another strategic blockchain agreement, the project fund sent 2.5 million MATIC to an address associated with the bookmaker. Thus, DraftKings became one of more than 100 validators on the Polygon network. Many of them charged staking fees of 5-10% of the reward, but the new protocol partner chose a different path.
DraftKings set the validator fee at 100%, which means that many small delegates did not receive a single token as a reward for staking. Over time, the DraftKings validator grew into one of the largest on the network, and Polygon itself became its main delegate, blocking a total of 60 million MATIC.