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/r/business [spam filtered] The Secret Online Weapons Store That'll Sell Anyone Anything -- Reporter visits The Armory, secretive online arms bazaar. Access via TOR, bring Bitcoins to pay

/business [spam filtered] The Secret Online Weapons Store That'll Sell Anyone Anything -- Reporter visits The Armory, secretive online arms bazaar. Access via TOR, bring Bitcoins to pay submitted by ModerationLog to ModerationLog [link] [comments]

Is Bitcoin failing on its main objective?

I've been looking for ways to store/send/receive bitcoins independently and other than operating a full node myself it seems there isnt a way to do it.
Bitcoins main goal was to provide decentralised money and the ability to send/receive it without the need for a third party. But atm third parties like coinbase, electrum, armory etc etc are required. Running a full node is clearly unrealistic for regular users, so this means users are still bound to 3rd parties.
I dont mean to single electrum out here, but after googling a little bit I see numerous hacks on electrum that have resulted in lots of lost BTC for its users.
Personally I wouldnt feel secure holding large amounts of bitcoins in a wallet that is operated by any third party, be that electrum, trezor, coinbase or any other, as you can never know when a clever hacker might come up with something that results in you losing some or all of your coins.
Of course if I had control of my own coins, I would need to keep them safe from attackers myself, but at least that would be my own responsibility and fault if they were lost/stolen. I would much rather lose my coins because of an error that I'd made, than going online 1 day, learning that my third party wallet provider has been hacked and all my coins are gone.
So as the title asks - Is Bitcoin failing on its main objective?
submitted by Re-Mix-It to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

I'm an Undercover FBI Agent on the Deep Web

Part one
My name is Special Agent “Barry Allen” . (Not my real name of course) It's actually my code name. Given to me by my colleagues. You may recognize this name from the comic book character “The Flash”. I was given this name due to my quickness to obtain IP addresses , bypass firewalls and hack into certain deep web sites and shut them down. That is my area of expertise.
However, I've also been assigned to a Joint Task Force before which tracked and arrested drug runners, firearms dealers and human trafficking rings. Believe it or not. The federal government is everywhere. Social media, Reddit, YouTube. You name it. We have our guys on it. We monitor everything. That being said, the FBI only has jurisdiction to operate within the borders of the United States.
In this new digital age we find ourselves living, Cybercrime is much more of a direct threat. Now more than ever…
Yes in the past we feared as a nation, biological and chemical warfare. As an example, right after 9/11 the United States had an Anthrax attack. In the FBI, it was known as “Amerithrax” Letters were mailed containing anthrax spores to several news media offices and to Democratic Senators Tom Daschle and Patrick Leahy, killing 5 people and infecting 17 others. Once the victim opened the letters they would immediately be exposed to the spores. Inhaling them is the most deadly form of the attacks. And it quickly destroys your immune and respiratory system's.Back then there were no known cures and it was difficult to treat as the symptoms often times confused doctors. The death rate once exposed was nearly 95% .No one was ever officially arrested or tried as the primary suspect for this horrific crime. If you ask me though, the scariest part of this investigation is where it led us….To a lab on an Army base. Essentially the US Army was weaponizing Anthrax using independent scientists specializing in microbiological warfare.
Of course though, if you wanted to bring down Western Civilization today , all you'd have to do is manipulate or destroy our satellites and we would be back in the dark ages. Computers, banks , grocery stores and cell phones, power plants, even the water filtration system runs with electronics and the ability to communicate with satellites.
Essentially, our world now depends on this. It's scary to think about. Especially when 14 year olds are hacking into the largest banks in the world from their mother's basement. Somehow they are able to bypass the best security systems we know of. (I personally believe they are using password skimmers) We joke in my department that in order to work for us, you simply only need to be smarter than a teenager.
My background is in IT while in the military. While serving i also obtained several certifications and degrees in my field..
I worked alongside someone i never thought i would. Turns out the federal government often times hires former hackers to “consult” for them. In fact they have an army of internet soldiers at their disposal. I was actually trained by a convicted felon. It's been said he is one of the best hackers in the world. Eventually i was put in contact with men in the FBI. Essentially went through a series of rigorous “tests” to determine my operating field of work. After seeing our skills, they then placed myself and the felon on the Cyber Anti-Terrorism unit (or CAT as we call it) .
Our first assignment was to locate a man on the Deep Web known only as “Captain Death” He runs this anonymous site in which the viewers would donate bitcoin to watch unspeakable acts of torture, mutilation and murder. Often times called “Red Rooms”. After searching for a while, clicking on every single link given to us, we found the exact link which directed us to the host site.We visited the website. For a moment the page was completely black. So we waited a few moments. Suddenly a bright red colored text appears across the top of the screen. “Welcome! To the house of pain, tonight's events will commence in 2 minutes. Enjoy” Looking over at my colleague, Jeff begins penetrating the sites security systems attempting to find the IP address of the hosts location. Viewing the site still with my eyes locked onto the screen. Using my laptop separate from Jeffs. The monitor goes black, Then a video attempts to load. Buffering now for several minutes. “Any luck Jeff”? I ask. “I'm searching for a weakness in the security firewall. Give me a minute” he responds. Frustrated i say, “We may not have a minute” Using access control, Jeff was able to find and manipulate the users login information bringing down the video before the it began. Believe it or not. One of the weakest points to a website can often times be it's login feature. Jeff found a vulnerability in the source codes software and exploited it. Still haven't found the guy. As that process is much more difficult. For now, we can rest a little bit easier knowing his account is compromised.
The best hack is when you can invade a security system and not ever be noticed. This was not one of those instances. “Who are you” appears on Jeff's computer screen. He responds quickly “The Dark Knight” in bold green text as he looks over the offenders account. Attempting to track down banking information. Recent transactions. Even bitcoin exchange.
Searching over the vast amount of data pouring into the site. Seems they have gone through great lengths to keep themselves hidden from the public. The Identity of the perp is still unknown. Patting Jeff on the shoulder i thank him for saving my eyes from witnessing god only knows what. I suppose for now it's a small victory. “Let's take a break Jeff” I urge. Shutting down our laptops we exit the dark cold room we sat in with monitors, computers, servers and many other electronic components all around us. One thing to remember, heat is the enemy of electronics. and for some strange reason, we enjoy freezing our asses off while hacking.
Walking outside Jeff lights up a cigarette and takes a drag. Putting on his sunglasses “Want one?” He asks “No thanks, they really break my concentration, I don't seem to function well with that in my system” i reply… he scoffs and quietly whispers (amateur) while choking and coughing. I smile and look up “Yeah well at least I can breathe” I say laughing. (A smile forming on ny face) We begin walking to a nearby restaurant. My phone lights up and rings loudly. It's my supervisor. “Go for Barry” I speak confidently. My boss is breathing heavily into the phone and says sternly “What's the News on Captain Death”? I begin to inform him on our progress and our struggles. “Keep me posted Barry, good work.” He says. (Not telling him Jeff did most of the work, i feel bad for taking credit for this one)
Reaching the doors of the bar and grill, I notice a man sitting in the corner of the restaurant with his family. Jumping back quickly while peering around the corner. Jeff gives me a strange look as I inform him that man is a fugitive from an earlier investigation. I call in for back up and sit back in our unmarked unit waiting for the Cavalry to arrive as he is armed and extremely dangerous. 15 minutes pass as back up swarms the parking lot. We exit the vehicle and surround the building. Rushing in 12 men strong, guns drawn we make the arrest. Fortunately, he did not resist. No civilians were harmed on the takedown.This man has been on the run for months moving from state to state. I had previously set up a sting operation to illegally buy stolen guns from the man which had been arranged through the deep web. However , this particular sting was an in-person arms deal. He appeared very spooked and got away from us before the transaction was made. After searching his panel van today we found an entire armory of weapons. A few days pass and we now have a search warrant issued by the judge for his last known address. Confiscating all of his computers, hard drives and weapons. My partner and I found a hidden room below the living room floor boards with $1.4 million dollars in it. It also had passports and other documents. He was ready to flee the country for sure. Why he was out in public is beyond me. Though often times, men like him feel they are untouchable and above the law.
It's several weeks later and work has been slow. (Not sure if that is good or bad) Until today that is, I began chatting on forums and meeting interesting characters in chat rooms. On the clear net and deep web. Today I met a dark shadowy figure online. He claims to have worked with a group of hackers who specializes in debit and credit card theft online. (Playing the part ask in a private chat) “How much does this pay?” Moments pass with no answer. I sit and wait for a response. A message appears with a link and a phone number. “Contact him for a trial run, if you do well. He'll set you up with further work” he writes. (Thinking for a moment, finally an adversary worth hunting) Typing quickly I say “Who is he, do you know him personally”? He responds rapidly and the text box closes after he writes “Rule number one, no names!” Fortunately I was able to copy the link and phone number before my computer screen went completely blank.
Reaching for the burner phone i recently acquired i begin dialing the number provided. It rings several times. No answer. So i check out the link i copied. Right before i click on it. My phone lights up and rings beside me forcing me to jump out of my seat. Startled i look at the cell phone. Mildly confused as it reads 'unknown number’. Quickly i answer the phone. A man on the other end speaks. “How did you find this number”? he asks. I inform him i was searching online for a while. Im new and im looking for work. “I was told you're the man to call if i wanted some action, i need the money” i implore. “Competition is next week, meet at this address, winner gets a spot on my team, if you think you're up for the test, be on time” he demands. I thank him and abruptly hang up.
Jeff comes over to my place. He has some info on low level guys in the fraudulent/stolen debit card scheme. Using an unmarked and totally not suspicious surveillance van. We follow a few men on their day to day operations. For the most part, this portion of our job is the worst. Very daunting and boring. Sitting and waiting isn't exactly glamourous as the movies depict it to be.
From what we can tell so far these men are using credit card skimmers. Victims of credit card skimming are completely blindsided by the theft. They notice fraudulent charges on their accounts or money withdrawn from their accounts, but their credit and debit cards never left their possession. How did the theft happen?
You may be wondering, what exactly is this? Credit card skimming is a type of credit card theft where crooks use a small device to steal credit card information in an otherwise legitimate credit or debit card transaction. When a credit or debit card is swiped through a skimmer, the device captures and stores all the details stored in the card's magnetic stripe. The stripe contains the credit card number and expiration date and the credit card holder's full name. Thieves use the stolen data to make fraudulent charges either online or with a counterfeit credit card.
These men have been using these small devices all over the local area and surrounding states as well. Targeting the nicer areas of town. Attaching the devices to the ATMs. Sitting a short distance away in their cars watching each victim approaching. Laughing all the way to the bank...so to speak. After several days of stake-outs. Out team makes the arrests. Finding blank cards, machines and large sums of cash on hand. After hours of interrogations we learn a much bigger scheme is in the works. The men inform us that they were merely a distraction for a much larger crime. My supervisor gives us clearance to make a deal with them. Lessening their charges if they are willing to cooperate. Speaking with the men for 3 more hours we learn what's really going on. The next few days are extremely tense as our offices try to warn all the banks and even get the media involved.
Calling every bank, big and small we alert them of the situation that cybercriminals are poised to carry out an “ATM cash-out,” an operation that gives thieves access to untold sums of money by bypassing security measures on an ATM. If successful, the operation has the potential to be a heist unlike any we’ve ever seen.
The FBI has obtained unspecified reporting indicating cyber criminals are planning to conduct a global Automated Teller Machine (ATM) cash-out scheme in the coming days, likely associated with an unknown card issuer breach and commonly referred to as an ‘unlimited operation‘.
These unlimited operations compromise financial institutions or payment processors by installing malware that allows hackers to exploit network access, allowing admin-level access. Once inside, they can disable fraud protection, raise maximum ATM withdrawal amounts (and transaction limits) and withdraw large sums of money. Millions, potentially.
All they’ll need to carry out the attack are debit and credit card numbers found on the dark web, and dummy cards, also known as “blanks,” to attach the numbers to.
The cyber criminals typically create fraudulent copies of legitimate cards by sending stolen card data to co-conspirators who imprint the data on reusable magnetic strip cards, such as gift cards purchased at retail stores. At a pre-determined time, the co-conspirators withdraw account funds from ATMs using these cards.
It's nearly a week later and im preparing for my tests. I have my laptop ready in its case. Im extremely nervous.The information given to me is that i am to meet at this very strange building on the outskirts of town. I have no idea what to expect. I must come in first place to become a member of the team and ultimately take down the leader of this cybercrime domestic terrorist.
If things go according to his plan.He could potentially put the entire country on its knees and our banking systems would completely collapse.Chaos and madness will spread like wildfires. Millions of people unable to access their money will riot and destroy stores. Stealing food and everything they can get their hands on. The police will be overrun and unable to do anything about it. The military would most certainly be called in an attempt to regain order. Mass hysteria ensues. To the extremes we have never seen before. I must stop him. Before its too late….
Part 2
The day has come and I just received the call I've long avoided. It is time. The competition for top tier hackers are meeting at this building in which i believed to have been abandoned. We are in the surveillance van. Heading towards our destination. Our equipment is all packed up. Wearing a wire on my chest. (Hopefully they don't pat me down upon entry) Jeff is driving recklessly, as he has a bad habit of being late. Testing the audio in the back of the van. Generally this is done days before an operation. However, we are rather short on time. (Not pointing any fingers)
Leaving the city limits, we now enter a heavily wooded area. There is only one way in. The road is turning into rubble. Small rocks are shooting from our tires .Lights are fading behind us as we venture further into the forest. Jeff now using high beams. We notice it's grown quiet. Other than hearing the tires on the gravel road. There seems to be less and less wildlife in the area. I got this feeling like we are being watched.
Checking my cell phone, we have lost all signal. (Is this a trap)? i thought . Our other equipment seems to work just fine. I can begin to see dim lights in the distance. We must be nearing the competition. “You ready for this?” (Jeff asks while blowing smoke out the window) I start to swat the backdraft of the smoke billowing back into my window. “Yeah, I'm ready, you should really consider cutting back on the smokes.” I utter. Just then, a pack of Marlboros are hurled in my direction. “We're here , Barry. Make sure you have everything.” (Jeff commands) “I'm all set.” I reply.
Jeff stops the Van on the gravel. Exiting the vehicle, i grab my backpack while adjusting my clothes. (I found some glasses with regular lens in them, so as to ‘look the part’) Walking towards the building i speak quietly into my chest microphone. “Test, test chest mic, how do you read me” i ask. (Jeffs growly voice comes into my earpiece) “Loud and clear, good luck” he responds.
One odd thing i notice right away as my feet kick up against the rocks on the ground is that there is only one vehicle other than ours. A large bus. Slightly confused, i look in every direction while also investigating the bus. Seems as though it's empty. (Later i would learn everyone else met up at a different location and they all took the bus to get here).
Reaching the suspicious looking building, i reach for the door handle. As the door opens with little force, loud music hits me as well as bright flashing lights. What the hell? Walking around i find what i was looking for in a back room. “You're late , take your seat.” a well dressed man says (Seeing one empty seat left) Grabbing my laptop from the bag. Booting it up and joining the their local area network. Connection established. A strange software automatically downloads on my laptop.
The man who greeted me walks over to examine my screen. “We will wait until this participant is ready” (he tells everyone else) Minutes pass and the program has finished installing. What's on my screen is a D O D login showing the user name and password empty fields. “Ok everyone, your first task will be to crack the code and gain entry into this system. You have ten minutes to access the servers and find the login information. The first 10 people who accomplish this task will advance to the next round, good luck, your time starts now!” he explained.
A voice come over my earpiece once more .“Ok Barry, i'm linked up with your laptop, i can see everything you see. I will now control everything remotely. How do you read”? Jeff says quietly. “I hear you, I'll let you take over from here.” I reply. My colleague begins typing away like mad. It's been said he can type up to 153 words per minute. Looking at my screen, the computer is changing rapidly, each window appearing with different streams of code. (Almost like what you seen in the movie The Matrix) Which i suppose is a foreign language to most people. It can seem overwhelming at times. Normally. I would be doing this.
Jeff is far better and faster than i. It's not worth the risk. This task is far too important. There is much at stake here. As he continues going in through the firewall. More boxes open and close all over the screen. I appear as if im typing away. As there is a man walking around watching each potential hacker perform their duties. Not sure if it's the leader of this anonymous group. He is in a dark suit and all i can see is the flashes of light from each monitor.
Maybe it's just my paranoia but i feel like he keeps shooting me these awfully suspicious looks. Have to stay focused. Come on Barry. You need this. Concentrate! Keep your head in the game. I can't lose myself in the moment. Oh wait a minute, i just now remembered. I'm not even in control of my machine. Jeff, i sure as hell hope you know what you're doing…
“Barry, you DO know i just heard everything you said, right? Now shut the hell up and let me work. We only have 4 minutes left!!” Jeff urges. “Well then hurry up you lung cancer having prick, I'm dying in here. Must be 90 degrees” i whisper. Just then (Access granted) appears on my screen. The login information has been hacked. Instantly i jump up as if I've just won in BINGO. “I'm in!!!” I yell loudly to the man. He nods and another man comes over to confirm the legitimacy of my claim.
After confirmation is given a few moments later. Myself and several others are ushered to another room not first seen when you enter the building. First we are taken down a flight of unkempt stairs creaking and groaning with every step. Feeling as it could give out at any moment. Our group reaches the bottom of the stairs and are now on a platform. A mechanical whirring is heard as we now are being lowered even further underground. “Where the hell are we going”? One man asks in fear. “Silence fool”!! (Says the man in a nice dark suit) Finally the platform stops as i would approximate we are at least 80 feet underground.
A long dark hallway is before us. Lit dimly by low hanging lights. Which never seem to end as far as we can see. Walking for several minutes i no longer hear my associate in my ear piece. So i remove it quickly before anyone notices. There is a musty smell that has disturbed me immediately coming down here. It grows stronger the closer we get to the direction we are headed. Im last in line only in front of what i assess is a hired goon.
Stopping for a moment im pushed forward on my upper back near my shoulders. (I swear if i wasn't trying to save the world right now, I'd just take out my service pistol and blow this cocksucker away. No one would miss him) We reach a large old wooden door with absolutely no handle or markings of any kind. The leader pushes up against the wall near the door and it opens slowly. Everyone pours in single file line. There is a large wooden table with chairs almost like a conference room. “Take your seats please” the leader addresses. “You're all probably wondering what the hell we are doing down here, well you're here for a job. Also i didn't want any interference of any kind. Just in case the government is watching us. There's no way they could possibly hear what's being said this far underground.” He explains.
“Congratulations to each of you that has moved on to the next round. You 10 have been chosen to advance to the next stage in the competition. This following task will include various stages of difficulty. You will be chosen at random by a computer so it's completely fair. Each of you are to hack into some the world's largest banks and bring down their servers. Please come back to this location. Your names have been taken down and we shall contact you if anything changes. I expect to see all of you back with us .Same time next week. 6 days from now. That is all for now, thank you.”
The leader finishes and leaves the room first. Each man muttering and chatting loudly. I can hear only bits and pieces as everyone is talking loudly. Minutes pass and we are escorted out of the building. Everyone begins walking towards the bus. I veer towards my van and am stopped by the same man who pushed me earlier. “Just where the hell do you think you're going”? He asks. “Oh i didn't get the meet up spot, i had to drive here.” I respond while swatting away his hand from my shoulder. The man reaches in his pocket pulling out a card. “Be at this location and be on time or we will find someone else” the man urges. I snatch the card and stuff it into my wallet.
Reaching the van, i hop in and drive away. “What the hell happened in there”? Jeff demands. I begin informing him of everything that took place and explained the situation. He nods and tells me good work. Wait a minute, this doesn't look right. Jeff looks at me puzzled. Something is off. I don't remember any of this. Now there's a fork in the road. Is this the way we came? I thought i remembered it being only a one way in and one way out. “You went off the gravel road, move over,let me drive.” Jeff says. Hey sorry man, I'm a hacker. Not a tracker. Just get us the hell out of here. I'm more lost than Atlantis.
About an hour passes and Jeff somehow gets us out of the woods and back to the main road. We head back towards my house. But suddenly he makes a detour. “Screw this man. After all that i need a damn drink. You down”? Jeff asks. “Well in the words of my father, If you have time to think, you have time to drink” i utter proudly. (Then again dad was a major alcoholic, so perhaps that's bad advice) “Well alright then” jeff says as he floors the gas pedal.
Roughly 20 minutes later we arrive at his favourite bar where he immediately opens up a tab. I'm worried as I've heard he drinks like a fish. Not to mention we are both armed in a bar. (Yes that's illegal but screw you i am F B I. Remember folks, laws are made to be broken, otherwise, I'd be out of a job)
Crap i think i have lost my colleague. I begin walking around the establishment and am stunned to see this gorgeous blonde woman cross my path. We strike up a conversation and i soon forget about Jeff. (Meh oh well he is a grown man, i am sure he will be fine) She asks what i do for work and of course i lie. Never know when you need to run a background check on someone. Besides telling the whole world you're an undercover FBI agent isn't exactly the best idea. Or so the Bureau instructed us.
We continue chatting for a while and eventually part ways as it began to get late into the night we exchange numbers and she leaves gracefully. I walk outside to see the van still parked in the same spot. A bit puzzled i go over to inspect the van thinking maybe he just passed out in the front seat. I arrive at the driver's side door and open it to find all of our equipment gone and jeff is nowhere to be found. Freaking out i run back into the bar searching all over even behind the bar next to the register.
The bathrooms are empty and it's closing time. I have no idea where he went.. Did he leave with some one or was he was abducted possibly, either way i am completely dead if my supervisor finds out about this. I have to find him and the equipment. And who the hell was that girl, could she have something to do with this? I need answers. Oh no. I just realized, my laptop is also missing. If that information gets in the wrong hands. It could have catastrophic consequences…...
submitted by BeardedVeteran to DrCreepensVault [link] [comments]

I'm an Undercover FBI Agent on the Deep Web.

Part one
My name is Special Agent “Barry Allen” . (Not my real name of course) It's actually my code name. Given to me by my colleagues. You may recognize this name from the comic book character “The Flash”. I was given this name due to my quickness to obtain IP addresses , bypass firewalls and hack into certain deep web sites and shut them down. That is my area of expertise.
However, I've also been assigned to a Joint Task Force before which tracked and arrested drug runners, firearms dealers and human trafficking rings. Believe it or not. The federal government is everywhere. Social media, Reddit, YouTube. You name it. We have our guys on it. We monitor everything. That being said, the FBI only has jurisdiction to operate within the borders of the United States.
In this new digital age we find ourselves living, Cybercrime is much more of a direct threat. Now more than ever…
Yes in the past we feared as a nation, biological and chemical warfare. As an example, right after 9/11 the United States had an Anthrax attack. In the FBI, it was known as “Amerithrax” Letters were mailed containing anthrax spores to several news media offices and to Democratic Senators Tom Daschle and Patrick Leahy, killing 5 people and infecting 17 others. Once the victim opened the letters they would immediately be exposed to the spores. Inhaling them is the most deadly form of the attacks. And it quickly destroys your immune and respiratory system's.Back then there were no known cures and it was difficult to treat as the symptoms often times confused doctors. The death rate once exposed was nearly 95% .No one was ever officially arrested or tried as the primary suspect for this horrific crime. If you ask me though, the scariest part of this investigation is where it led us….To a lab on an Army base. Essentially the US Army was weaponizing Anthrax using independent scientists specializing in microbiological warfare.
Of course though, if you wanted to bring down Western Civilization today , all you'd have to do is manipulate or destroy our satellites and we would be back in the dark ages. Computers, banks , grocery stores and cell phones, power plants, even the water filtration system runs with electronics and the ability to communicate with satellites.
Essentially, our world now depends on this. It's scary to think about. Especially when 14 year olds are hacking into the largest banks in the world from their mother's basement. Somehow they are able to bypass the best security systems we know of. (I personally believe they are using password skimmers) We joke in my department that in order to work for us, you simply only need to be smarter than a teenager.
My background is in IT while in the military. While serving i also obtained several certifications and degrees in my field..
I worked alongside someone i never thought i would. Turns out the federal government often times hires former hackers to “consult” for them. In fact they have an army of internet soldiers at their disposal. I was actually trained by a convicted felon. It's been said he is one of the best hackers in the world. Eventually i was put in contact with men in the FBI. Essentially went through a series of rigorous “tests” to determine my operating field of work. After seeing our skills, they then placed myself and the felon on the Cyber Anti-Terrorism unit (or CAT as we call it) .
Our first assignment was to locate a man on the Deep Web known only as “Captain Death” He runs this anonymous site in which the viewers would donate bitcoin to watch unspeakable acts of torture, mutilation and murder. Often times called “Red Rooms”. After searching for a while, clicking on every single link given to us, we found the exact link which directed us to the host site.We visited the website. For a moment the page was completely black. So we waited a few moments. Suddenly a bright red colored text appears across the top of the screen. “Welcome! To the house of pain, tonight's events will commence in 2 minutes. Enjoy” Looking over at my colleague, Jeff begins penetrating the sites security systems attempting to find the IP address of the hosts location. Viewing the site still with my eyes locked onto the screen. Using my laptop separate from Jeffs. The monitor goes black, Then a video attempts to load. Buffering now for several minutes. “Any luck Jeff”? I ask. “I'm searching for a weakness in the security firewall. Give me a minute” he responds. Frustrated i say, “We may not have a minute” Using access control, Jeff was able to find and manipulate the users login information bringing down the video before the it began. Believe it or not. One of the weakest points to a website can often times be it's login feature. Jeff found a vulnerability in the source codes software and exploited it. Still haven't found the guy. As that process is much more difficult. For now, we can rest a little bit easier knowing his account is compromised.
The best hack is when you can invade a security system and not ever be noticed. This was not one of those instances. “Who are you” appears on Jeff's computer screen. He responds quickly “The Dark Knight” in bold green text as he looks over the offenders account. Attempting to track down banking information. Recent transactions. Even bitcoin exchange.
Searching over the vast amount of data pouring into the site. Seems they have gone through great lengths to keep themselves hidden from the public. The Identity of the perp is still unknown. Patting Jeff on the shoulder i thank him for saving my eyes from witnessing god only knows what. I suppose for now it's a small victory. “Let's take a break Jeff” I urge. Shutting down our laptops we exit the dark cold room we sat in with monitors, computers, servers and many other electronic components all around us. One thing to remember, heat is the enemy of electronics. and for some strange reason, we enjoy freezing our asses off while hacking.
Walking outside Jeff lights up a cigarette and takes a drag. Putting on his sunglasses “Want one?” He asks “No thanks, they really break my concentration, I don't seem to function well with that in my system” i reply… he scoffs and quietly whispers (amateur) while choking and coughing. I smile and look up “Yeah well at least I can breathe” I say laughing. (A smile forming on ny face) We begin walking to a nearby restaurant. My phone lights up and rings loudly. It's my supervisor. “Go for Barry” I speak confidently. My boss is breathing heavily into the phone and says sternly “What's the News on Captain Death”? I begin to inform him on our progress and our struggles. “Keep me posted Barry, good work.” He says. (Not telling him Jeff did most of the work, i feel bad for taking credit for this one)
Reaching the doors of the bar and grill, I notice a man sitting in the corner of the restaurant with his family. Jumping back quickly while peering around the corner. Jeff gives me a strange look as I inform him that man is a fugitive from an earlier investigation. I call in for back up and sit back in our unmarked unit waiting for the Cavalry to arrive as he is armed and extremely dangerous. 15 minutes pass as back up swarms the parking lot. We exit the vehicle and surround the building. Rushing in 12 men strong, guns drawn we make the arrest. Fortunately, he did not resist. No civilians were harmed on the takedown.This man has been on the run for months moving from state to state. I had previously set up a sting operation to illegally buy stolen guns from the man which had been arranged through the deep web. However , this particular sting was an in-person arms deal. He appeared very spooked and got away from us before the transaction was made. After searching his panel van today we found an entire armory of weapons. A few days pass and we now have a search warrant issued by the judge for his last known address. Confiscating all of his computers, hard drives and weapons. My partner and I found a hidden room below the living room floor boards with $1.4 million dollars in it. It also had passports and other documents. He was ready to flee the country for sure. Why he was out in public is beyond me. Though often times, men like him feel they are untouchable and above the law.
It's several weeks later and work has been slow. (Not sure if that is good or bad) Until today that is, I began chatting on forums and meeting interesting characters in chat rooms. On the clear net and deep web. Today I met a dark shadowy figure online. He claims to have worked with a group of hackers who specializes in debit and credit card theft online. (Playing the part ask in a private chat) “How much does this pay?” Moments pass with no answer. I sit and wait for a response. A message appears with a link and a phone number. “Contact him for a trial run, if you do well. He'll set you up with further work” he writes. (Thinking for a moment, finally an adversary worth hunting) Typing quickly I say “Who is he, do you know him personally”? He responds rapidly and the text box closes after he writes “Rule number one, no names!” Fortunately I was able to copy the link and phone number before my computer screen went completely blank.
Reaching for the burner phone i recently acquired i begin dialing the number provided. It rings several times. No answer. So i check out the link i copied. Right before i click on it. My phone lights up and rings beside me forcing me to jump out of my seat. Startled i look at the cell phone. Mildly confused as it reads 'unknown number’. Quickly i answer the phone. A man on the other end speaks. “How did you find this number”? he asks. I inform him i was searching online for a while. Im new and im looking for work. “I was told you're the man to call if i wanted some action, i need the money” i implore. “Competition is next week, meet at this address, winner gets a spot on my team, if you think you're up for the test, be on time” he demands. I thank him and abruptly hang up.
Jeff comes over to my place. He has some info on low level guys in the fraudulent/stolen debit card scheme. Using an unmarked and totally not suspicious surveillance van. We follow a few men on their day to day operations. For the most part, this portion of our job is the worst. Very daunting and boring. Sitting and waiting isn't exactly glamourous as the movies depict it to be.
From what we can tell so far these men are using credit card skimmers. Victims of credit card skimming are completely blindsided by the theft. They notice fraudulent charges on their accounts or money withdrawn from their accounts, but their credit and debit cards never left their possession. How did the theft happen?
You may be wondering, what exactly is this? Credit card skimming is a type of credit card theft where crooks use a small device to steal credit card information in an otherwise legitimate credit or debit card transaction. When a credit or debit card is swiped through a skimmer, the device captures and stores all the details stored in the card's magnetic stripe. The stripe contains the credit card number and expiration date and the credit card holder's full name. Thieves use the stolen data to make fraudulent charges either online or with a counterfeit credit card.
These men have been using these small devices all over the local area and surrounding states as well. Targeting the nicer areas of town. Attaching the devices to the ATMs. Sitting a short distance away in their cars watching each victim approaching. Laughing all the way to the bank...so to speak. After several days of stake-outs. Out team makes the arrests. Finding blank cards, machines and large sums of cash on hand. After hours of interrogations we learn a much bigger scheme is in the works. The men inform us that they were merely a distraction for a much larger crime. My supervisor gives us clearance to make a deal with them. Lessening their charges if they are willing to cooperate. Speaking with the men for 3 more hours we learn what's really going on. The next few days are extremely tense as our offices try to warn all the banks and even get the media involved.
Calling every bank, big and small we alert them of the situation that cybercriminals are poised to carry out an “ATM cash-out,” an operation that gives thieves access to untold sums of money by bypassing security measures on an ATM. If successful, the operation has the potential to be a heist unlike any we’ve ever seen.
The FBI has obtained unspecified reporting indicating cyber criminals are planning to conduct a global Automated Teller Machine (ATM) cash-out scheme in the coming days, likely associated with an unknown card issuer breach and commonly referred to as an ‘unlimited operation‘.
These unlimited operations compromise financial institutions or payment processors by installing malware that allows hackers to exploit network access, allowing admin-level access. Once inside, they can disable fraud protection, raise maximum ATM withdrawal amounts (and transaction limits) and withdraw large sums of money. Millions, potentially.
All they’ll need to carry out the attack are debit and credit card numbers found on the dark web, and dummy cards, also known as “blanks,” to attach the numbers to.
The cyber criminals typically create fraudulent copies of legitimate cards by sending stolen card data to co-conspirators who imprint the data on reusable magnetic strip cards, such as gift cards purchased at retail stores. At a pre-determined time, the co-conspirators withdraw account funds from ATMs using these cards.
It's nearly a week later and im preparing for my tests. I have my laptop ready in its case. Im extremely nervous.The information given to me is that i am to meet at this very strange building on the outskirts of town. I have no idea what to expect. I must come in first place to become a member of the team and ultimately take down the leader of this cybercrime domestic terrorist.
If things go according to his plan.He could potentially put the entire country on its knees and our banking systems would completely collapse.Chaos and madness will spread like wildfires. Millions of people unable to access their money will riot and destroy stores. Stealing food and everything they can get their hands on. The police will be overrun and unable to do anything about it. The military would most certainly be called in an attempt to regain order. Mass hysteria ensues. To the extremes we have never seen before. I must stop him. Before its too late….
Part 2
The day has come and I just received the call I've long avoided. It is time. The competition for top tier hackers are meeting at this building in which i believed to have been abandoned. We are in the surveillance van. Heading towards our destination. Our equipment is all packed up. Wearing a wire on my chest. (Hopefully they don't pat me down upon entry) Jeff is driving recklessly, as he has a bad habit of being late. Testing the audio in the back of the van. Generally this is done days before an operation. However, we are rather short on time. (Not pointing any fingers)
Leaving the city limits, we now enter a heavily wooded area. There is only one way in. The road is turning into rubble. Small rocks are shooting from our tires .Lights are fading behind us as we venture further into the forest. Jeff now using high beams. We notice it's grown quiet. Other than hearing the tires on the gravel road. There seems to be less and less wildlife in the area. I got this feeling like we are being watched.
Checking my cell phone, we have lost all signal. (Is this a trap)? i thought . Our other equipment seems to work just fine. I can begin to see dim lights in the distance. We must be nearing the competition. “You ready for this?” (Jeff asks while blowing smoke out the window) I start to swat the backdraft of the smoke billowing back into my window. “Yeah, I'm ready, you should really consider cutting back on the smokes.” I utter. Just then, a pack of Marlboros are hurled in my direction. “We're here , Barry. Make sure you have everything.” (Jeff commands) “I'm all set.” I reply.
Jeff stops the Van on the gravel. Exiting the vehicle, i grab my backpack while adjusting my clothes. (I found some glasses with regular lens in them, so as to ‘look the part’) Walking towards the building i speak quietly into my chest microphone. “Test, test chest mic, how do you read me” i ask. (Jeffs growly voice comes into my earpiece) “Loud and clear, good luck” he responds.
One odd thing i notice right away as my feet kick up against the rocks on the ground is that there is only one vehicle other than ours. A large bus. Slightly confused, i look in every direction while also investigating the bus. Seems as though it's empty. (Later i would learn everyone else met up at a different location and they all took the bus to get here).
Reaching the suspicious looking building, i reach for the door handle. As the door opens with little force, loud music hits me as well as bright flashing lights. What the hell? Walking around i find what i was looking for in a back room. “You're late , take your seat.” a well dressed man says (Seeing one empty seat left) Grabbing my laptop from the bag. Booting it up and joining the their local area network. Connection established. A strange software automatically downloads on my laptop.
The man who greeted me walks over to examine my screen. “We will wait until this participant is ready” (he tells everyone else) Minutes pass and the program has finished installing. What's on my screen is a D O D login showing the user name and password empty fields. “Ok everyone, your first task will be to crack the code and gain entry into this system. You have ten minutes to access the servers and find the login information. The first 10 people who accomplish this task will advance to the next round, good luck, your time starts now!” he explained.
A voice come over my earpiece once more .“Ok Barry, i'm linked up with your laptop, i can see everything you see. I will now control everything remotely. How do you read”? Jeff says quietly. “I hear you, I'll let you take over from here.” I reply. My colleague begins typing away like mad. It's been said he can type up to 153 words per minute. Looking at my screen, the computer is changing rapidly, each window appearing with different streams of code. (Almost like what you seen in the movie The Matrix) Which i suppose is a foreign language to most people. It can seem overwhelming at times. Normally. I would be doing this.
Jeff is far better and faster than i. It's not worth the risk. This task is far too important. There is much at stake here. As he continues going in through the firewall. More boxes open and close all over the screen. I appear as if im typing away. As there is a man walking around watching each potential hacker perform their duties. Not sure if it's the leader of this anonymous group. He is in a dark suit and all i can see is the flashes of light from each monitor.
Maybe it's just my paranoia but i feel like he keeps shooting me these awfully suspicious looks. Have to stay focused. Come on Barry. You need this. Concentrate! Keep your head in the game. I can't lose myself in the moment. Oh wait a minute, i just now remembered. I'm not even in control of my machine. Jeff, i sure as hell hope you know what you're doing…
“Barry, you DO know i just heard everything you said, right? Now shut the hell up and let me work. We only have 4 minutes left!!” Jeff urges. “Well then hurry up you lung cancer having prick, I'm dying in here. Must be 90 degrees” i whisper. Just then (Access granted) appears on my screen. The login information has been hacked. Instantly i jump up as if I've just won in BINGO. “I'm in!!!” I yell loudly to the man. He nods and another man comes over to confirm the legitimacy of my claim.
After confirmation is given a few moments later. Myself and several others are ushered to another room not first seen when you enter the building. First we are taken down a flight of unkempt stairs creaking and groaning with every step. Feeling as it could give out at any moment. Our group reaches the bottom of the stairs and are now on a platform. A mechanical whirring is heard as we now are being lowered even further underground. “Where the hell are we going”? One man asks in fear. “Silence fool”!! (Says the man in a nice dark suit) Finally the platform stops as i would approximate we are at least 80 feet underground.
A long dark hallway is before us. Lit dimly by low hanging lights. Which never seem to end as far as we can see. Walking for several minutes i no longer hear my associate in my ear piece. So i remove it quickly before anyone notices. There is a musty smell that has disturbed me immediately coming down here. It grows stronger the closer we get to the direction we are headed. Im last in line only in front of what i assess is a hired goon.
Stopping for a moment im pushed forward on my upper back near my shoulders. (I swear if i wasn't trying to save the world right now, I'd just take out my service pistol and blow this cocksucker away. No one would miss him) We reach a large old wooden door with absolutely no handle or markings of any kind. The leader pushes up against the wall near the door and it opens slowly. Everyone pours in single file line. There is a large wooden table with chairs almost like a conference room. “Take your seats please” the leader addresses. “You're all probably wondering what the hell we are doing down here, well you're here for a job. Also i didn't want any interference of any kind. Just in case the government is watching us. There's no way they could possibly hear what's being said this far underground.” He explains.
“Congratulations to each of you that has moved on to the next round. You 10 have been chosen to advance to the next stage in the competition. This following task will include various stages of difficulty. You will be chosen at random by a computer so it's completely fair. Each of you are to hack into some the world's largest banks and bring down their servers. Please come back to this location. Your names have been taken down and we shall contact you if anything changes. I expect to see all of you back with us .Same time next week. 6 days from now. That is all for now, thank you.”
The leader finishes and leaves the room first. Each man muttering and chatting loudly. I can hear only bits and pieces as everyone is talking loudly. Minutes pass and we are escorted out of the building. Everyone begins walking towards the bus. I veer towards my van and am stopped by the same man who pushed me earlier. “Just where the hell do you think you're going”? He asks. “Oh i didn't get the meet up spot, i had to drive here.” I respond while swatting away his hand from my shoulder. The man reaches in his pocket pulling out a card. “Be at this location and be on time or we will find someone else” the man urges. I snatch the card and stuff it into my wallet.
Reaching the van, i hop in and drive away. “What the hell happened in there”? Jeff demands. I begin informing him of everything that took place and explained the situation. He nods and tells me good work. Wait a minute, this doesn't look right. Jeff looks at me puzzled. Something is off. I don't remember any of this. Now there's a fork in the road. Is this the way we came? I thought i remembered it being only a one way in and one way out. “You went off the gravel road, move over,let me drive.” Jeff says. Hey sorry man, I'm a hacker. Not a tracker. Just get us the hell out of here. I'm more lost than Atlantis.
About an hour passes and Jeff somehow gets us out of the woods and back to the main road. We head back towards my house. But suddenly he makes a detour. “Screw this man. After all that i need a damn drink. You down”? Jeff asks. “Well in the words of my father, If you have time to think, you have time to drink” i utter proudly. (Then again dad was a major alcoholic, so perhaps that's bad advice) “Well alright then” jeff says as he floors the gas pedal.
Roughly 20 minutes later we arrive at his favourite bar where he immediately opens up a tab. I'm worried as I've heard he drinks like a fish. Not to mention we are both armed in a bar. (Yes that's illegal but screw you i am F B I. Remember folks, laws are made to be broken, otherwise, I'd be out of a job)
Crap i think i have lost my colleague. I begin walking around the establishment and am stunned to see this gorgeous blonde woman cross my path. We strike up a conversation and i soon forget about Jeff. (Meh oh well he is a grown man, i am sure he will be fine) She asks what i do for work and of course i lie. Never know when you need to run a background check on someone. Besides telling the whole world you're an undercover FBI agent isn't exactly the best idea. Or so the Bureau instructed us.
We continue chatting for a while and eventually part ways as it began to get late into the night we exchange numbers and she leaves gracefully. I walk outside to see the van still parked in the same spot. A bit puzzled i go over to inspect the van thinking maybe he just passed out in the front seat. I arrive at the driver's side door and open it to find all of our equipment gone and jeff is nowhere to be found. Freaking out i run back into the bar searching all over even behind the bar next to the register.
The bathrooms are empty and it's closing time. I have no idea where he went.. Did he leave with some one or was he was abducted possibly, either way i am completely dead if my supervisor finds out about this. I have to find him and the equipment. And who the hell was that girl, could she have something to do with this? I need answers. Oh no. I just realized, my laptop is also missing. If that information gets in the wrong hands. It could have catastrophic consequences…...
submitted by BeardedVeteran to mrcreeps [link] [comments]

Just had the most terrifying day... and you fuckers are the only people I can share it with.

  1. blockchain.info's MyWallet offline decrypt.html did not work for two different wallets (rejected second password)
  2. re-download both wallet backups
  3. offline decrypt fails again
  4. Try second password in web interface on 1st account (fails)
  5. Try second password in web interface on 2nd account (fails)
  6. sudden fear sets in...
  7. re-download mywallet decrypt html
Repeat step 1 thru 5 multiple times (tried copy/pasting and graphical keyboard)
Even deeper fear sets in. Consider dave at walletrecoverywhatever, started scouring stackexchange, reddit, bitcointalk. Start researching obscure javascript code I couldn't even begin to understand let alone implement. Hysterical laugh-crying. Chain-smoking cigarettes (indoors which I never do). Girlfriend is scared I'm not answering my phone. Order $20 worth of takeout which gets cold in the bag after sitting there for 5 hours because I am sick at the prospect of losing this btc. I basically got to the "acceptance" point in that whole grief scale you hear about when someone dies. I got really calm.
10 minutes ago I tried one more time through the web interface and.... the second password worked. I now have access to both accounts......
I am 100% POSITIVE I was rejected after entering the correct second password in MyWallet via the browser.
Offline decrypt still doesn't work with correct password...
What the fuck happened? I'm going to bed now.
TL;DR Spent 16 hours thinking I lost my coins, went insane. It sucked.
UPDATE: Thanks to pinhead26 for pointing out that the decrypt.html DOES NOT WORK if you have a second password in place. To make matters worse, it STILL GIVES YOU THE OPTION to enter a second password. So whether you type your correct password or total gibberish it will return "NULL" for your private keys, I find the logic behind this completely insane. Its bad enough that the wallet.html doesn't work as intended, but its an extra "fuck you" that it asks you for the password anyway...
submitted by stressed_da_fuq_out to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

Critique my cold storage procedure..

It's really overdue that I move my Bitcoin offline. It's a nerve wrecking thought but needs to be done. Before I go through it though I wrote down my procedure and I am asking the community for help in finding any vulnerabilities or tips on what I can do better.
Thanks
Bitcoin Cold Storage Procedure
  1. Bought new $200 toshiba laptop from Best buy. It's only purpose will be Bitcoin Wallet management
  2. Bought 4 USB sticks (each from a different manufacturer)
  3. Download Armory onto 1 of the 4 USB drives from an online computer
  4. Turn on new (offline) computer, Go through set up procedure and Disable Wifi
  5. Install Armory onto New (offline) computer (windows 8 OS) from USB drive
  6. Create encrypted Wallet
  7. Create Fragmented Paper Back up (w/ Secure Print) with cable connected printer
  8. Create Personal Paper Back up (w /Secure Print) with cable connected printer
  9. Test the paper Backups
  10. Back up encrypted wallets to the other (3) USB sticks.
  11. 1 USB stick goes in a safe, 1 goes to a family member, 1 stays accessible to me
  12. Create watching only wallet from offline computer and transfer it to USB stick I used to install armory client
  13. Import watching only copy onto online computer, Wait for synch
  14. Send a test amount of BTC to an address generated by offline wallet
  15. confirm it transferred successfully by checking watching only wallet and on Blockchain.info
  16. Send the rest of Bitcoin to cold storage Wallet
  17. Again confirm it’s been transferred
  18. Pass out Fragmented Back ups to trusted Friends/Family
  19. Personal back up also in safe with 1 of the USB sticks.
submitted by cryptotraveler to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

Bitcoin Armory, got BTC deposited into my wallet but it is OFFLINE, NEED HELP GETTING IT ONLINE!!!!

as the title said, i got a deposit into my bitcoin armory wallet, and its offline, i think cold storage is the word used. I am looking for help getting it back online as i am not a computer guy in the slightest. its all very very new and scary to me, ive moved it to my D:/ drive for more space, did the little that I could. I would greatly appreciate any help and figured this is the place to do it. Ive found out the company is dissolved and it is maintained by the community so i figured why not come to the biggest community in the world!
submitted by Burdmayne23 to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

Cold Storage

What Is Cold Storage?
Cold storage is an offline wallet provided for storing bitcoins. With cold storage, is stored on a platform that is not connected to the internet, thereby, protecting the wallet from unauthorized access, cyber hacks, and other vulnerabilities that a system connected to the internet is susceptible to.

Cold Storage Explained

When a checking, savings, account with a traditional bank has been compromised, the bank is able to refund the lost or stolen money back to the account holder. However, if your account or wallet has been compromised and your bitcoins stolen, the owner would be unable to recover his coins. Hence, the need for a safe and secure medium of storage
Stores the private keys of a bitcoin owner. The private key given to any bitcoin user is a unique string of alphanumeric characters required to access the user’s address. The address is the user’s unique ID that is required to make transactions and receive bitcoins from a sender. Two people making a transaction with bitcoin, where one is a seller and the other a buyer, will have to share their addresses with each other in order to complete the transaction. The buyer of the commodity or service sends the required number of bitcoins to the seller’s divulged address as payment, and the verifies the validity of the transaction and confirms that the buyer or sender really has those funds to send. Once the payment has been delivered to the address, the seller or receiver can only access the funds through his or her private key. It is, therefore, imperative for private keys to be kept secure because if stolen, the user’s bitcoins or altcoins could be unlocked and accessed from the address without authorization.

Protection From Theft

Private keys stored on a wallet connected to the internet are vulnerable to network-based theft. These wallets are known as hot wallets. With a hot wallet, all the functions required to complete a transaction are made from a single online device. The wallet generates and stores private keys; digitally signs transactions using private keys; and broadcasts the signed transaction to the network. The problem is that once the signed transactions have been broadcasted online, an attacker crawling the networks may become privy to the private key which was used to sign the transaction.
Cold storage resolves this issue by signing the transaction with the private keys in an offline environment. Any transaction initiated online is temporarily transferred to an offline wallet kept on a device such as a USB, CD, hard drive, paper, or offline computer, where it is then digitally signed before it is transmitted to the online network. Because the private key does not come into contact with a server connected online during the signing process, even if an online hacker comes across the transaction, s/he would not be able to access the private key used for it.
A paper wallet is simply a document that has the public and private keys written on it. The document is printed from the bitcoin paper wallet tool online with an offline printer. The paper wallet or document usually embedded on it so that it can easily be scanned and signed to make a transaction. The drawback to this medium is that if the paper is lost, rendered illegible or destroyed, the user will never be able to access his address where his funds are.
Another form of cold storage is a hardware wallet which uses an offline device or smartcard to generate private keys offline. The Ledger USB Wallet is an example of a hardware wallet that uses a smartcard to secure private keys. The device looks and functions like a USB, and a computer and chrome-based app are required to store the private keys offline. Like a paper wallet, it is essential to store this USB device and smartcard in a safe place, as any damage or loss could terminate access to the user’s bitcoins. Two other popular hardware wallets include TREZOR and KeepKey.
Finally, users looking for cold storage options can also opt for offline software wallets, which are quite similar to hardware wallets but are a more complex process for less technical users. An offline software wallet splits a wallet into two accessible platforms – an offline wallet which contains the private keys and an online wallet which has the public keys stored. The online wallet generates new unsigned transactions and sends the address of the user to the receiver or sender on the other end of the transaction. The unsigned transaction is moved to the offline wallet and signed with the private key. The signed transaction is then moved back to the online wallet which broadcasts it to the network. Because the offline wallet never gets connected to the internet, its stored private keys remain secure. Electrum and Armory are often quoted as the best offline software wallets in the cryptoeconomy.
Cryptocurrency users should ensure that the wallet of their choice is compatible with the coins they transact or trade in, as not all wallets support all cryptocurrencies.

Cold Storage: The Preferred Choice

Cold storage is the preferred storage method for everyone from long-term hodlers and Bitcoin proponents to institutional custody services like Ledger Vault — who holds millions of dollars in funds.Storage through a hardware wallet is the mechanism of choice because of the physical security layer afforded by decoupling the encrypted USB devices from the Internet. Malicious entities would need to have physical access to the device and subsequently bypass numerous protections like passphrases, PINs, and tampering authenticity signatures on the device. Not readily available with fiat currencies. Additionally, cold wallets are improvements over similar non-custodial wallets like software wallets . Despite a crowded field of competition, a few hardware wallet providers have stood out from the crowd — particularly Ledger. Ledger provides several of the most popular hardware devices. Depending on your storage, interface, and cost preferences, both are standards from which other cold wallet products can adequately be compared to give users context on the cold storage wallet market.
submitted by Avra11 to u/Avra11 [link] [comments]

Beginner's Guide to Trading Crypto. Part 11

Beginner's Guide to Trading Crypto. Part 11

Money Loves Security And So Do Cryptos: A Brief Guide Down Crypto Wallet Lane

Since time immemorial people have been keeping their money and valuables in safe places. Be they purses, clay pots full of coins buried in their backyards or treasure chests hidden in caves with piles of bones strewn around to keep unwanted visitors at bay, they means conceived for safekeeping hoarded valuables are just as creative as they are limitless.
The advent of cryptocurrencies as a new class of valuables and assets instantly spawned the need to keep them safe from the clammy hands of criminals. The logical solution was to develop wallets that would be used to keep cryptos safe. As a result, a multitude of wallets have emerged offering all kinds of added services to their users while remaining means of storage at heart.
There is a huge variety of wallets available: Coinomi, GreenAddress, Blockchain.info, Atomic, Exodus, Jaxx, Electrum, Copay, Bread, Airbitz, Armory, Mycelium, Blockchain Wallet and dozens of others, each offering their services to suit any taste.
https://preview.redd.it/tai1ax5q3u341.jpg?width=1200&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=0a33622327c7e52eea02e77f7c843423e6aeba12

Types Of Wallets

There are several types of wallets available to users and everyone must decide for themselves which one suits their needs best.
Hardware wallets: These are the most secure and reliable wallets available, since they are not connected to the internet at all. Hardware wallets are like flash memory cards that store the user’s cryptocurrencies and access offline. A bright example is the Trezor wallet, which is deemed to be impermeable to hackers. Unless the user loses the device itself, it is safe to assume that the cryptos will stay on it indefinitely and no one will ever gain access to them.
Online, Web or Hot wallets: These are online services, or online wallets that offer to store the user’s cryptos online with direct access to the internet at any time. In essence, online wallets are online accounts in which users store their funds. The risks are very high, since exchange wallets are routinely being hacked and the cryptos stored therein stolen.
Desktop wallets: Desktop wallets are software programs that can be downloaded and installed on a PC and will only be accessible from the device they were downloaded onto. The risks are the same as with hot wallets and another added inconvenience is that loss of the device or loss of access to it means loss of all cryptos stored on it.
Mobile wallets: Mobile wallets are software programs that can be downloaded onto a mobile device, such as a phone or a tablet. There are wallets for Android and iPhones and all of them bear even greater risks than hot wallets. Since mobile devices are susceptible to theft and a variety of viruses, it is extremely risky to store cryptos on them. Though access to the cryptos without private keys is impossible, unless the user stores them on the device, loss of all cryptos with the mobile device is guaranteed.
Paper wallets: Paper wallets are offline cold storage for cryptocurrencies. This is by far the safest means of storing cryptos, which includes printing the public and private keys on a piece of paper and storing it in a safe place. The keys are printed in the form of QR codes for convenience. With paper wallets, the user has complete control over their funds and the only risk lies in losing the piece of paper with the keys.
Other types of wallets: Apart from the five main types of wallets, there were attempts at creating other types of services, such as atomic wallets using atomic swap technology and even combinations of mobile/hot/cold wallets. Despite limited success, hybrids models of wallets did not become popular.

Main Pros And Cons

When looking at wallets and their main advantages and disadvantages, it is easiest to speak of the division between cold and hot wallets.
When speaking of cold wallets, such as the Trezor Bitcoin wallet and Ledger Nano S or X, the same issue will be observed, and that is the fact that such wallets can be physically lost. Though anyone who ever finds them will never be able to gain access to the stored cryptos without the private keys (unless they are pasted on the device), loss of all cryptos on the device is guaranteed. In addition, cold wallets can be difficult to install and are inconvenient for frequent use.
https://preview.redd.it/ff2dukdx3u341.png?width=1021&format=png&auto=webp&s=f36cdc26b13f33433c5124f5e5a67c0e40f9dbf4
Hot wallets are far more susceptible to risk than their cold counterparts. Though hot storage is much faster and convenient with a wide variety of options from Coinbase to Blockchain.info, the risk of cybercrime runs high. Mobile or desktop storage is also considered to be hot storage and is also risky, if the device is damaged or destroyed.

Bitcoin Problems

Bitcoin, as the firstborn cryptocurrency, was born with a number of defects. One of the main problems of the king of cryptos is the yet unsolved scalability problem. This refers to the limit on the amount of transactions the Bitcoin network can process due to the limited size of and frequency of blocks in the Bitcoin blockchain.
Said problem poses some difficulties to all Bitcoin users and leads to what is known as backlog in the blockchain. The backlog leads to long queues of transactions in the system. With the average transaction time in the Bitcoin blockchain being around 7 transactions per second and the theoretical maximum standing at 27, it is not difficult to understand how long users of the blockchain have to wait for their transactions to pass in times of heightened demand – the time is in the hours and sometimes even days.

Bitcoin Wallets Review

Since Bitcoin is the most popular cryptocurrency on the market, it is logical to judge wallets by their support of the first cryptocurrency. As such, the following will be a brief review of some of the best and most popular Bitcoin wallets on the market.
Online Bitcoin Wallets
Online or web wallets are the most popular ones out there and the best Bitcoin wallet overall is widely considered to be Blockchain.info, which is easily accessible and convenient for everyday use with good security. As an anonymous Bitcoin wallet, Coinbase follows in the lead with its ability to store a multitude of various coins, but with the same security risks that are inherent to all hot wallets.
Android Bitcoin Wallets
Android is the most popular mobile system in the world and plays host to a number of good mobile wallets. The best Android Bitcoin wallet is widely considered to be the Electrum Bitcoin wallet with its excellent reputation, good security and convenience. Though Electrum has some occasional glitches, they are never critical. Another excellent wallet for Android is the Coinomi wallet with its support for a wide variety of cryptos and excellent user support, which even allows for restore options using special phrases. Coinomi has its issues as well, such as occasional exchange glitches, but the many pros outweigh the cons.
Bitcoin Hardware Wallets
The undisputed leaders as the best hardware wallets for Bitcoin are Ledger Nano X and S, Trezor T and Trezor One, and Keepkey. Bitcoin hardware wallets are comparable in their security, accessibility and usability. The difference is mainly in the price, which ranges from $165 for Trzeor T to $59 for the Ledger Nano S model. In fact, the Ledger Bitcoin wallet is often called the king of hardware wallets. The KeepKey Bitcoin wallet is the in the top three hardware wallets as a convenient and stylish device. Though KeepKey supports over 40 assets, it still lacks coin support.
Bitcoin Wallets For iPhone
iPhone’s iOS system is the second most popular for mobile devices in the world and has support for some good wallets as well. The best iOS Bitcoin wallet for iPhone is considered to be the Abra software, which offers credit card support for topping up crypto balances and a good user interface, which is even more oriented at exchanges. The next software is Edge, formerly known as Airbitz. The Edge wallet is best known for high security and good user-friendliness along with multi-currency support.
Bitcoin Wallets For Windows
Bitcoin wallets for PC are very popular and Windows is leading the way with some excellent offers for wallets. Atomic is by far the most advanced and the best option for Windows users as it offers Atomic swaps technology as its basis. The application offers a wide variety of operations and supports over 300 cryptocurrencies. Exodus is the second most popular choice as a desktop only wallet with support for Bitcoin and many other altcoins. Exodus offers its users a good interface and it is free for use.
Bitcoin Wallets For Mac
Since Atomic and Exodus are cross-platform wallets, they can be used on Windows and Mac. Apart from them, there are also Jaxx and Electrum, which can be used on Mac. Jaxx is a multi-currency wallet with support for around 40 cryptos and has a PIN feature. In addition, Jaxx is free for use. Electrum is one of the oldest desktop wallets and is a lightweight wallet that does not require the full blockchain to operate, meaning less storage needed for its operation. The wallet requires a PIN and is essentially a desktop bank with good security and usability. Electrum is also a Bitcoin wallet for iPad, since it can be used on mobile platforms.
Bitcoin Paper Wallet
Since storing cryptos online on exchange or hot wallets or even on devices is risky, it is oftentimes more convenient to use a simple printer to print out the keys and store them. BitAddress offers a convenient and easy to use, step by step guide to creating a paper wallet with the added benefit of sleeping in peace, known that nothing and no one will ever threaten your Bitcoins.
https://preview.redd.it/bh7wi0d64u341.png?width=600&format=png&auto=webp&s=9f7fbd269eea43ac3b8897ad470553ba8b3c730d

Checklist

When embarking on the journey of creating your first wallet, think well of which type to use. The type will depend on the priorities that stand before the user. If security is paramount, then paper or cold storage wallets are the go-to solution. If frequency of use is the name of the day, then hot wallets and their inherent risks are the best way to go.
The most frequent questions related to wallets are how to add money to a Bitcoin wallet and how to set up a Bitcoin wallet. Both questions have no single answer, as each wallet offers its own instructions on how to top up balances and how to set them up. Therefore it is recommended to study all instructions carefully prior to operation.
Either way, there is no silver bullet and some features will have to be sacrificed in deciding how to store cryptocurrencies. The one thing that is constant is the need to store Bitcoins and cryptos and make use of them.

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Originally posted on our blog.
submitted by MoonTrader_io to Moontrader_official [link] [comments]

Patch 0.8.0.1208

Patch has been Released!

The 0.8.0.1208 update has added the new Interchange map and new game mechanics to Escape from Tarkov
We are happy to announce the release of a major update, 0.8.0.1208, for the closed beta version of multiplayer online FPS Escape from Tarkov. This game update introduces the new Interchange map, modern and somewhat atypical compared to the rest of Tarkov locations so far. The Interchange, besides obvious highways, features a huge shopping mall with shops and restaurants. The new location provides conditions for honing new confined space combat tactics. It should be noted that for some time after the update there will not be any AI adversaries on the location, they will be added in the following patches. Also, traditionally, along with a new location, we have introduced a new trader - Ragman, who sells everything related to garments and equipment.
We also would like to announce that the current update applied new, experimental methods for optimizing the handling of game physics on client and server, as well as new means to reduce network latency. In addition, specifically for the new Interchange map, new object rendering optimization technology was applied. Over the course of the upcoming testing, these methods will be applied to other locations as well, resulting in an additional performance gain. We admit that in the process of testing the new game update, you may experience various problems associated with new methods of optimization and new game features. All the emerging problems will be processed through the system of bug reports and promptly fixed. Moreover, the launcher was updated as well, along with numerous other fixes and changes. The new EFT update has also introduced a basic training that is going to help new players to understand and master the basic mechanics of the game faster and better.
"As promised, we are gradually and continuously introducing new features and realistic mechanics," said Nikita Buyanov, the head of Battlestate Games. "So, after this update, players will have to spend more time on loading and unloading of the magazines, check the number of cartridges in the magazine and chamber. Note that different magazines affect the loading/unloading rate differently, and there is now a new specialized character skill - Mag Drills."
Other additions to the game content include new weapons, among them, the Springfield Armory M1A, Remington 870, AAR, APB and new models of AK including 100-series as well as numerous items for weapon modification. Overall, more than 60 new gear and equipment items were added to the game, including bags and vests, body armors and helmets, weapon modifications, ammunition and medicine cases, hats, glasses, and balaclavas. A detailed list of the new equipment was previously posted on our official website of the game and in the social network communities. You can find the patch notes below!
Finally, the update has been combined with the long-anticipated profile reset (wipe).
The following updates, among other improvements and changes, are going to further improve the project performance, network quality, bug fixes, and add new game combat mechanics. Soon, Escape from Tarkov is scheduled to feature the advanced armor system, flea market, Hideout and other features that were mentioned in the plans for 2018. Development and testing of the future innovations are already underway. Also, the test results of this update will have a crucial influence on deciding the Open Beta launch date. We are sure you are excited for all this as much as we are.

Patch Notes

Please take note that first hours after the update servers may experience heavy load leading to increased matching time possible network delays.
Please, take into consideration that this update is a part of the Closed Beta testing. Some of the introduced innovations can potentially lead to previously unknown issues or bugs. Please be sure to report all discovered issues through the launcher built-in bug report system. This will help fix them promptly.
This update comes with a profile reset/wipe. All bonus gears can be obtained again from your profile.
Added:
Time-consuming loading/unloading of ammo
  • Loading/unloading of ammo into the magazine does not happen instantly. The time required to load/unload one cartridge may vary depending on the magazine and the level of the new skill, Mag drills.
  • Time is spent on loading and unloading ammo in the raid only, in the menu the procedures stay the same as before.
  • Loading and unloading can only be done with inventory open. If you close it or switch tabs, loading or unloading is interrupted. The cartridges that were already loaded into the mag, stay in it (and vice versa in case of unloading).
  • Only one magazine can be loaded or unloaded simultaneously.
  • The Info window displays the loading/unloading and mag check speed bonus if it is not 0.
  • If you’ve started loading an empty mag, or unloading a full one, the precise number of rounds is displayed.
Checking mags, hidden precise number of cartridges in the magazine
  • By default, it is unknown how many cartridges are in the mag, if it is not examined (hereinafter referred to as "Unknown/Checked"). Mag counter displays an unknown number of cartridges. For example: (?/30)
  • Check accuracy is determined by new "Mag Drills" skill.
  • The magazine can be checked either by animation - Alt+T or through the interface by Right-clicking and selecting Check magazine.
  • If you checked the number on the 0 skill level, then it returns "~empty" - "<1/2" - "~1/2" - ">1/2" - "~full". As skill level 1 an approximate number will be shown. On level 2 - the precise amount of ammo will be provided.
  • Full and empty mags are considered to be checked.
  • All the magazines you take into the raid are checked automatically.
  • Loading/unloading a checked mag doesn’t change the state, it remains checked.
  • After firing, the number of cartridges in the magazine become unknown.
  • Ammo check precision now depends on the Mag Drills skill, not on Weapon Mastering.
  • Outside of the raid, the number of cartridges is always displayed precisely.
  • If you have dropped a checked mag and picked it back up, it remains checked. If someone picked it up and dropped it again, it becomes unknown to you.
Checking the chamber
  • The chamber also requires checking. Bnly by animation using the key binding Shift + T.
  • If you load the cartridge into an unknown chamber, it automatically becomes checked.
  • If the shot was fired from a checked mag (first shot), the chamber remains checked. Otherwise, it becomes unknown as well.
New location:
Equipment:
Bags:
Tactical Vests:
Body armor:
Helmets:
Weapon modifications:
Cases:
Weapons:
AI Improvements:
Optimizations:
Fixed:
Changes:
Known issues:
submitted by LewisUK_ to EscapefromTarkov [link] [comments]

How does this work exactly?

Hello, I am currently trying to set up a wallet and such in order to acquire bitcoins, but I am having some troubles. I have gone to many sites that say I can buy bitcoins, but from the ones I have checked out, they aren't able to be used in the United States. So my question is, how do I open a wallet, and what program of the thousands that are out there should I download? Much appreciated.
submitted by xXDrug_DoctorXx to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

What wallets, today, support fee bumping (i.e., replace-by-fee / RBF)?

There are nearly two dozen wallets listed here, ...
but not many of them have support for RBF such that a user can bump the fee.
Replace-by-fee (RBF) is a method to permit the fee paid to be bumped up to cause an unconfirmed transaction to get included in a block sooner.
With an increasing number of transactions waiting, fee bumping will become a bigger deal, once again.
Those with RBF support that I know of:
Custodial/online wallets with RBF:
To use RBF, the original transaction needs to be constructed properly so that a replacement transaction gets relayed, and today only about 7% % of them 9% of them have that.
What other wallets do today support fee bumping through RBF?
[Note: Periodically this list is updated, with most additions learned from the RBF Support list by BItcoinOps. Feel free to send to me additions / corrections via direct message here on Reddit or via e-mail.]
submitted by cointastical to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

I'm an Undercover FBI agent on the Deep Web (Part One)

My name is Special Agent “Barry Allen” .(not my real name of course) It's actually my code name. Given to me by my colleagues. You may recognize the name from the comic book character “The Flash”. I was given this name due to my quickness to obtain IP addresses , bypass firewalls and hack into certain deep web sites and shut them down. That is my area of expertise.
However, I've also been assigned to a Joint Task Force before which tracked and arrested drug runners, firearms dealers and human trafficking rings. Believe it or not. The federal government is everywhere. Social media, Reddit, YouTube. You name it. We have our guys on it. We monitor everything. That being said, the FBI only has jurisdiction to operate within the borders of the United States.
In this new digital age we find ourselves living, Cybercrime is much more of a direct threat. Now more than ever…
Yes in the past we feared as a nation, biological and chemical warfare. As an example, right after 9/11 the United States had an Anthrax attack. In the FBI, it was known as “Amerithrax” Letters were mailed containing anthrax spores to several news media offices and to Democratic Senators Tom Daschle and Patrick Leahy, killing 5 people and infecting 17 others. Once the victim opened the letters they would immediately be exposed to the spores. Inhaling them is the most deadly form of the attacks. And it quickly destroys your immune and respiratory system's.Back then there were no known cures and it was difficult to treat as the symptoms often times confused doctors. The death rate once exposed was nearly 95% .No one was ever officially arrested or tried as the primary suspect for this horrific crime. If you ask me though, the scariest part of this investigation is where it led us….To a lab on an Army base. Essentially the US Army was weaponizing Anthrax using independent scientists specializing in microbiological warfare.
Of course though, if you wanted to bring down Western Civilization today , all you'd have to do is manipulate or destroy our satellites and we would be back in the dark ages. Computers, banks , grocery stores and cell phones, power plants, even the water filtration system runs with electronics and the ability to communicate with satellites.
Essentially, our world now depends on this. It's scary to think about. Especially when 14 year olds are hacking into the largest banks in the world from their mother's basement. Somehow they are able to bypass the best security systems we know of. (I personally believe they are using password skimmers) We joke in my department that in order to work for us, you simply only need to be smarter than a teenager.
My background is in IT while in the military. While serving i also obtained several certifications and degrees in my field..
I worked alongside someone i never thought i would. Turns out the federal government often times hires former hackers to “consult” for them. In fact they have an army of internet soldiers at their disposal. I was actually trained by a convicted felon. It's been said he is one of the best hackers in the world. Eventually i was put in contact with men in the FBI. Essentially went through a series of rigorous “tests” to determine my operating field of work. After seeing our skills, they then placed myself and the felon on the Cyber Anti-Terrorism unit (or CAT as we call it) .
Our first assignment was to locate a man on the Deep Web known only as “Captain Death” He runs this anonymous site in which the viewers would donate bitcoin to watch unspeakable acts of torture, mutilation and murder. Often times called “Red Rooms”. After searching for a while, clicking on every single link given to us, we found the exact link which directed us to the host site.We visited the website. For a moment the page was completely black. So we waited a few moments. Suddenly a bright red colored text appears across the top of the screen. “Welcome! To the house of pain, tonight's events will commence in 2 minutes. Enjoy” Looking over at my colleague, Jeff begins penetrating the sites security systems attempting to find the IP address of the hosts location. Viewing the site still with my eyes locked onto the screen. Using my laptop separate from Jeffs. The monitor goes black, Then a video attempts to load. Buffering now for several minutes. “Any luck Jeff”? I ask. “I'm searching for a weakness in the security firewall. Give me a minute” he responds. Frustrated i say, “We may not have a minute” Using access control, Jeff was able to find and manipulate the users login information bringing down the video before the it began. Believe it or not. One of the weakest points to a website can often times be it's login feature. Jeff found a vulnerability in the source codes software and exploited it. Still haven't found the guy. As that process is much more difficult. For now, we can rest a little bit easier knowing his account is compromised.
The best hack is when you can invade a security system and not ever be noticed. This was not one of those instances. “Who are you” appears on Jeff's computer screen. He responds quickly “The Dark Knight” in bold green text as he looks over the offenders account. Attempting to track down banking information. Recent transactions. Even bitcoin exchange.
Searching over the vast amount of data pouring into the site. Seems they have gone through great lengths to keep themselves hidden from the public. The Identity of the perp is still unknown. Patting Jeff on the shoulder i thank him for saving my eyes from witnessing god only knows what. I suppose for now it's a small victory. “Let's take a break Jeff” I urge. Shutting down our laptops we exit the dark cold room we sat in with monitors, computers, servers and many other electronic components all around us. One thing to remember, heat is the enemy of electronics. and for some strange reason, we enjoy freezing our asses off while hacking.
Walking outside Jeff lights up a cigarette and takes a drag. Putting on his sunglasses “Want one?” He asks “No thanks, they really break my concentration, I don't seem to function well with that in my system” i reply… he scoffs and quietly whispers (amateur) while choking and coughing. I smile and look up “Yeah well at least I can breathe” I say laughing. (A smile forming on ny face) We begin walking to a nearby restaurant. My phone lights up and rings loudly. It's my supervisor. “Go for Barry” I speak confidently. My boss is breathing heavily into the phone and says sternly “What's the News on Captain Death”? I begin to inform him on our progress and our struggles. “Keep me posted Barry, good work.” He says. (Not telling him Jeff did most of the work, i feel bad for taking credit for this one)
Reaching the doors of the bar and grill, I notice a man sitting in the corner of the restaurant with his family. Jumping back quickly while peering around the corner. Jeff gives me a strange look as I inform him that man is a fugitive from an earlier investigation. I call in for back up and sit back in our unmarked unit waiting for the Cavalry to arrive as he is armed and extremely dangerous. 15 minutes pass as back up swarms the parking lot. We exit the vehicle and surround the building. Rushing in 12 men strong, guns drawn we make the arrest. Fortunately, he did not resist. No civilians were harmed on the takedown.This man has been on the run for months moving from state to state. I had previously set up a sting operation to illegally buy stolen guns from the man which had been arranged through the deep web. However , this particular sting was an in-person arms deal. He appeared very spooked and got away from us before the transaction was made. After searching his panel van today we found an entire armory of weapons. A few days pass and we now have a search warrant issued by the judge for his last known address. Confiscating all of his computers, hard drives and weapons. My partner and I found a hidden room below the living room floor boards with $1.4 million dollars in it. It also had passports and other documents. He was ready to flee the country for sure. Why he was out in public is beyond me. Though often times, men like him feel they are untouchable and above the law.
It's several weeks later and work has been slow. (Not sure if that is good or bad) Until today that is, I began chatting on forums and meeting interesting characters in chat rooms. On the clear net and deep web. Today I met a dark shadowy figure online. He claims to have worked with a group of hackers who specializes in debit and credit card theft online. (Playing the part ask in a private chat) “How much does this pay?” Moments pass with no answer. I sit and wait for a response. A message appears with a link and a phone number. “Contact him for a trial run, if you do well. He'll set you up with further work” he writes. (Thinking for a moment, finally an adversary worth hunting) Typing quickly I say “Who is he, do you know him personally”? He responds rapidly and the text box closes after he writes “Rule number one, no names!” Fortunately I was able to copy the link and phone number before my computer screen went completely blank.
Reaching for the burner phone i recently acquired i begin dialing the number provided. It rings several times. No answer. So i check out the link i copied. Right before i click on it. My phone lights up and rings beside me forcing me to jump out of my seat. Startled i look at the cell phone. Mildly confused as it reads 'unknown number’. Quickly i answer the phone. A man on the other end speaks. “How did you find this number”? he asks. I inform him i was searching online for a while. Im new and im looking for work. “I was told you're the man to call if i wanted some action, i need the money” i implore. “Competition is next week, meet at this address, winner gets a spot on my team, if you think you're up for the test, be on time” he demands. I thank him and abruptly hang up.
Jeff comes over to my place. He has some info on low level guys in the fraudulent/stolen debit card scheme. Using an unmarked and totally not suspicious surveillance van. We follow a few men on their day to day operations. For the most part, this portion of our job is the worst. Very daunting and boring. Sitting and waiting isn't exactly glamourous as the movies depict it to be.
From what we can tell so far these men are using credit card skimmers. Victims of credit card skimming are completely blindsided by the theft. They notice fraudulent charges on their accounts or money withdrawn from their accounts, but their credit and debit cards never left their possession. How did the theft happen?
You may be wondering, what exactly is this? Credit card skimming is a type of credit card theft where crooks use a small device to steal credit card information in an otherwise legitimate credit or debit card transaction. When a credit or debit card is swiped through a skimmer, the device captures and stores all the details stored in the card's magnetic stripe. The stripe contains the credit card number and expiration date and the credit card holder's full name. Thieves use the stolen data to make fraudulent charges either online or with a counterfeit credit card.
These men have been using these small devices all over the local area and surrounding states as well. Targeting the nicer areas of town. Attaching the devices to the ATMs. Sitting a short distance away in their cars watching each victim approaching. Laughing all the way to the bank...so to speak. After several days of stake-outs. Out team makes the arrests. Finding blank cards, machines and large sums of cash on hand. After hours of interrogations we learn a much bigger scheme is in the works. The men inform us that they were merely a distraction for a much larger crime. My supervisor gives us clearance to make a deal with them. Lessening their charges if they are willing to cooperate. Speaking with the men for 3 more hours we learn what's really going on. The next few days are extremely tense as our offices try to warn all the banks and even get the media involved.
Calling every bank, big and small we alert them of the situation that cybercriminals are poised to carry out an “ATM cash-out,” an operation that gives thieves access to untold sums of money by bypassing security measures on an ATM. If successful, the operation has the potential to be a heist unlike any we’ve ever seen.
The FBI has obtained unspecified reporting indicating cyber criminals are planning to conduct a global Automated Teller Machine (ATM) cash-out scheme in the coming days, likely associated with an unknown card issuer breach and commonly referred to as an ‘unlimited operation‘.
These unlimited operations compromise financial institutions or payment processors by installing malware that allows hackers to exploit network access, allowing admin-level access. Once inside, they can disable fraud protection, raise maximum ATM withdrawal amounts (and transaction limits) and withdraw large sums of money. Millions, potentially.
All they’ll need to carry out the attack are debit and credit card numbers found on the dark web, and dummy cards, also known as “blanks,” to attach the numbers to.
The cyber criminals typically create fraudulent copies of legitimate cards by sending stolen card data to co-conspirators who imprint the data on reusable magnetic strip cards, such as gift cards purchased at retail stores. At a pre-determined time, the co-conspirators withdraw account funds from ATMs using these cards.
It's nearly a week later and im preparing for my tests. I have my laptop ready in its case. Im extremely nervous.The information given to me is that i am to meet at this very strange building on the outskirts of town. I have no idea what to expect. I must come in first place to become a member of the team and ultimately take down the leader of this cybercrime domestic terrorist.
If things go according to his plan.He could potentially put the entire country on its knees and our banking systems would completely collapse.Chaos and madness will spread like wildfires. Millions of people unable to access their money will riot and destroy stores. Stealing food and everything they can get their hands on. The police will be overrun and unable to do anything about it. The military would most certainly be called in an attempt to regain order. Mass hysteria ensues. To the extremes we have never seen before. I must stop him. Before its too late….
submitted by BeardedVeteran to DrCreepensVault [link] [comments]

I'm an UnderCover FBI Agent on The Deep Web. (Part one)

My name is Special Agent “Barry Allen” . It's actually my code name. Given to me by my colleagues. You may recognize this name from the comic book character “The Flash”. I was given this name due to my quickness to obtain IP addresses , bypass firewalls and hack into certain deep web sites and shut them down. That is my area of expertise.
However, I've also been assigned to a Joint Task Force before which tracked and arrested drug runners, firearms dealers and human trafficking rings. Believe it or not. The federal government is everywhere. Social media, Reddit, YouTube. You name it. We have our guys on it. We monitor everything. That being said, the FBI only has jurisdiction to operate within the borders of the United States.
In this new digital age we find ourselves living, Cybercrime is much more of a direct threat. Now more than ever…
Yes in the past we feared as a nation, biological and chemical warfare. As an example, right after 9/11 the United States had an Anthrax attack. In the FBI, it was known as “Amerithrax” Letters were mailed containing anthrax spores to several news media offices and to Democratic Senators Tom Daschle and Patrick Leahy, killing 5 people and infecting 17 others. Once the victim opened the letters they would immediately be exposed to the spores. Inhaling them is the most deadly form of the attacks. And it quickly destroys your immune and respiratory system's.Back then there were no known cures and it was difficult to treat as the symptoms often times confused doctors. The death rate once exposed was nearly 95% .No one was ever officially arrested or tried as the primary suspect for this horrific crime. If you ask me though, the scariest part of this investigation is where it led us….To a lab on an Army base. Essentially the US Army was weaponizing Anthrax using independent scientists specializing in microbiological warfare.
Of course though, if you wanted to bring down Western Civilization today , all you'd have to do is manipulate or destroy our satellites and we would be back in the dark ages. Computers, banks , grocery stores and cell phones, power plants, even the water filtration system runs with electronics and the ability to communicate with satellites.
Essentially, our world now depends on this. It's scary to think about. Especially when 14 year olds are hacking into the largest banks in the world from their mother's basement. Somehow they are able to bypass the best security systems we know of. (I personally believe they are using password skimmers) We joke in my department that in order to work for us, you simply only need to be smarter than a teenager.
My background is in IT while in the military. While serving i also obtained several certifications and degrees in my field..
I worked alongside someone i never thought i would. Turns out the federal government often times hires former hackers to “consult” for them. In fact they have an army of internet soldiers at their disposal. I was actually trained by a convicted felon. It's been said he is one of the best hackers in the world. Eventually i was put in contact with men in the FBI. Essentially went through a series of rigorous “tests” to determine my operating field of work. After seeing our skills, they then placed myself and the felon on the Cyber Anti-Terrorism unit (or CAT as we call it) .
Our first assignment was to locate a man on the Deep Web known only as “Captain Death” He runs this anonymous site in which the viewers would donate bitcoin to watch unspeakable acts of torture, mutilation and murder. Often times called “Red Rooms”. After searching for a while, clicking on every single link given to us, we found the exact link which directed us to the host site.We visited the website. For a moment the page was completely black. So we waited a few moments. Suddenly a bright red colored text appears across the top of the screen. “Welcome! To the house of pain, tonight's events will commence in 2 minutes. Enjoy” Looking over at my colleague, Jeff begins penetrating the sites security systems attempting to find the IP address of the hosts location. Viewing the site still with my eyes locked onto the screen. Using my laptop separate from Jeffs. The monitor goes black, Then a video attempts to load. Buffering now for several minutes. “Any luck Jeff”? I ask. “I'm searching for a weakness in the security firewall. Give me a minute” he responds. Frustrated i say, “We may not have a minute” Using access control, Jeff was able to find and manipulate the users login information bringing down the video before the it began. Believe it or not. One of the weakest points to a website can often times be it's login feature. Jeff found a vulnerability in the source codes software and exploited it. Still haven't found the guy. As that process is much more difficult. For now, we can rest a little bit easier knowing his account is compromised.
The best hack is when you can invade a security system and not ever be noticed. This was not one of those instances. “Who are you” appears on Jeff's computer screen. He responds quickly “The Dark Knight” in bold green text as he looks over the offenders account. Attempting to track down banking information. Recent transactions. Even bitcoin exchange.
Searching over the vast amount of data pouring into the site. Seems they have gone through great lengths to keep themselves hidden from the public. The Identity of the perp is still unknown. Patting Jeff on the shoulder i thank him for saving my eyes from witnessing god only knows what. I suppose for now it's a small victory. “Let's take a break Jeff” I urge. Shutting down our laptops we exit the dark cold room we sat in with monitors, computers, servers and many other electronic components all around us. One thing to remember, heat is the enemy of electronics. and for some strange reason, we enjoy freezing our asses off while hacking.
Walking outside Jeff lights up a cigarette and takes a drag. Putting on his sunglasses “Want one?” He asks “No thanks, they really break my concentration, I don't seem to function well with that in my system” i reply… he scoffs and quietly whispers (amateur) while choking and coughing. I smile and look up “Yeah well at least I can breathe” I say laughing. (A smile forming on ny face) We begin walking to a nearby restaurant. My phone lights up and rings loudly. It's my supervisor. “Go for Barry” I speak confidently. My boss is breathing heavily into the phone and says sternly “What's the News on Captain Death”? I begin to inform him on our progress and our struggles. “Keep me posted Barry, good work.” He says. (Not telling him Jeff did most of the work, i feel bad for taking credit for this one)
Reaching the doors of the bar and grill, I notice a man sitting in the corner of the restaurant with his family. Jumping back quickly while peering around the corner. Jeff gives me a strange look as I inform him that man is a fugitive from an earlier investigation. I call in for back up and sit back in our unmarked unit waiting for the Cavalry to arrive as he is armed and extremely dangerous. 15 minutes pass as back up swarms the parking lot. We exit the vehicle and surround the building. Rushing in 12 men strong, guns drawn we make the arrest. Fortunately, he did not resist. No civilians were harmed on the takedown.This man has been on the run for months moving from state to state. I had previously set up a sting operation to illegally buy stolen guns from the man which had been arranged through the deep web. However , this particular sting was an in-person arms deal. He appeared very spooked and got away from us before the transaction was made. After searching his panel van today we found an entire armory of weapons. A few days pass and we now have a search warrant issued by the judge for his last known address. Confiscating all of his computers, hard drives and weapons. My partner and I found a hidden room below the living room floor boards with $1.4 million dollars in it. It also had passports and other documents. He was ready to flee the country for sure. Why he was out in public is beyond me. Though often times, men like him feel they are untouchable and above the law.
It's several weeks later and work has been slow. (Not sure if that is good or bad) Until today that is, I began chatting on forums and meeting interesting characters in chat rooms. On the clear net and deep web. Today I met a dark shadowy figure online. He claims to have worked with a group of hackers who specializes in debit and credit card theft online. (Playing the part ask in a private chat) “How much does this pay?” Moments pass with no answer. I sit and wait for a response. A message appears with a link and a phone number. “Contact him for a trial run, if you do well. He'll set you up with further work” he writes. (Thinking for a moment, finally an adversary worth hunting) Typing quickly I say “Who is he, do you know him personally”? He responds rapidly and the text box closes after he writes “Rule number one, no names!” Fortunately I was able to copy the link and phone number before my computer screen went completely blank.
Reaching for the burner phone i recently acquired i begin dialing the number provided. It rings several times. No answer. So i check out the link i copied. Right before i click on it. My phone lights up and rings beside me forcing me to jump out of my seat. Startled i look at the cell phone. Mildly confused as it reads 'unknown number’. Quickly i answer the phone. A man on the other end speaks. “How did you find this number”? he asks. I inform him i was searching online for a while. Im new and im looking for work. “I was told you're the man to call if i wanted some action, i need the money” i implore. “Competition is next week, meet at this address, winner gets a spot on my team, if you think you're up for the test, be on time” he demands. I thank him and abruptly hang up.
Jeff comes over to my place. He has some info on low level guys in the fraudulent/stolen debit card scheme. Using an unmarked and totally not suspicious surveillance van. We follow a few men on their day to day operations. For the most part, this portion of our job is the worst. Very daunting and boring. Sitting and waiting isn't exactly glamourous as the movies depict it to be.
From what we can tell so far these men are using credit card skimmers. Victims of credit card skimming are completely blindsided by the theft. They notice fraudulent charges on their accounts or money withdrawn from their accounts, but their credit and debit cards never left their possession. How did the theft happen?
You may be wondering, what exactly is this? Credit card skimming is a type of credit card theft where crooks use a small device to steal credit card information in an otherwise legitimate credit or debit card transaction. When a credit or debit card is swiped through a skimmer, the device captures and stores all the details stored in the card's magnetic stripe. The stripe contains the credit card number and expiration date and the credit card holder's full name. Thieves use the stolen data to make fraudulent charges either online or with a counterfeit credit card.
These men have been using these small devices all over the local area and surrounding states as well. Targeting the nicer areas of town. Attaching the devices to the ATMs. Sitting a short distance away in their cars watching each victim approaching. Laughing all the way to the bank...so to speak. After several days of stake-outs. Out team makes the arrests. Finding blank cards, machines and large sums of cash on hand. After hours of interrogations we learn a much bigger scheme is in the works. The men inform us that they were merely a distraction for a much larger crime. My supervisor gives us clearance to make a deal with them. Lessening their charges if they are willing to cooperate. Speaking with the men for 3 more hours we learn what's really going on. The next few days are extremely tense as our offices try to warn all the banks and even get the media involved.
Calling every bank, big and small we alert them of the situation that cybercriminals are poised to carry out an “ATM cash-out,” an operation that gives thieves access to untold sums of money by bypassing security measures on an ATM. If successful, the operation has the potential to be a heist unlike any we’ve ever seen.
The FBI has obtained unspecified reporting indicating cyber criminals are planning to conduct a global Automated Teller Machine (ATM) cash-out scheme in the coming days, likely associated with an unknown card issuer breach and commonly referred to as an ‘unlimited operation‘.
These unlimited operations compromise financial institutions or payment processors by installing malware that allows hackers to exploit network access, allowing admin-level access. Once inside, they can disable fraud protection, raise maximum ATM withdrawal amounts (and transaction limits) and withdraw large sums of money. Millions, potentially.
All they’ll need to carry out the attack are debit and credit card numbers found on the dark web, and dummy cards, also known as “blanks,” to attach the numbers to.
The cyber criminals typically create fraudulent copies of legitimate cards by sending stolen card data to co-conspirators who imprint the data on reusable magnetic strip cards, such as gift cards purchased at retail stores. At a pre-determined time, the co-conspirators withdraw account funds from ATMs using these cards.
It's nearly a week later and im preparing for my tests. I have my laptop ready in its case. Im extremely nervous.The information given to me is that i am to meet at this very strange building on the outskirts of town. I have no idea what to expect. I must come in first place to become a member of the team and ultimately take down the leader of this cybercrime domestic terrorist.
If things go according to his plan.He could potentially put the entire country on its knees and our banking systems would completely collapse.Chaos and madness will spread like wildfires. Millions of people unable to access their money will riot and destroy stores. Stealing food and everything they can get their hands on. The police will be overrun and unable to do anything about it. The military would most certainly be called in an attempt to regain order. Mass hysteria ensues. To the extremes we have never seen before. I must stop him. Before its too late….
submitted by BeardedVeteran to nosleep [link] [comments]

5 Best Cryptocurrency Wallets with User-Owned Private Keys

5 Best Cryptocurrency Wallets with User-Owned Private Keys

https://preview.redd.it/sycppf5jrhk31.png?width=1000&format=png&auto=webp&s=f4e3415322fb12f29319fbd8c22fa90d14ffebbb
All cryptocurrency transactions are based on the control of two important numbers: public and private keys. Public keys facilitate the transfer of crypto; private keys, their receipt. These keys are stored and secured through digital wallets, the software through which users have access to their digital assets.
There are two main models of cryptocurrency wallets: those that don’t allow users to control their private keys and those that do. The first model of wallets host users’ private keys on a centralized server, which facilitates transactions. In the second model, users hold their own private keys and are able to send and receive tokens without the consent of a third party.
So just how important is it to directly control your private keys? We’ll answer that question today, and review some of the best wallet options that allow you to do that.

Private keys: What they are and why they matter

Private keys are randomly generated secret numbers that link a user to particular cryptocurrency assets. Coins can be transferred to other blockchains only by accessing a wallet’s private keys. For this reason, it is extremely important to keep private keys secure and confidential. Matt Miller, a Bloomberg TV host, demonstrated this lesson to the world when he briefly showed his private key QR code on-air and had his funds immediately stolen.
In one model of wallet, a third-party retains control of the private keys. This model is typically described as the crypto version of a bank. The user is the owner of the funds but relies on the wallet’s server to execute transactions. However, this comparison fails to recognize key dangers inherent in third-party management of crypto funds.
Crypto wallets, like bank accounts and any other internet-connected account, are at risk of being hacked. Unlike banks, however, crypto projects are not legally obligated to refund account holders their funds in the case of a security breach. For this reason, keeping funds in a wallet for which you don’t control the private keys is significantly riskier than storing fiat currency in a bank.
User-owned private key wallets offer a much stronger option in terms of security. No one has control over your funds except you. That means that if someone hacks the server hosting your wallet, your funds are secure. It also means that you can’t have your funds stolen if the wallet’s leadership “loses” the private keys (yes, that has happened).
Always remember that private keys unlock full access to digital funds. Opting for wallets with user-owned private keys ensures that you maintain control over your funds and do not rely on a third party to make transactions. Here, we picked out some of the most trusted solutions that allow full user-control over private keys.

Coin Wallet

Coin Wallet is an excellent solution that allows you to directly conduct blockchain transactions and access tokens. You can export your private keys, and the wallet does not have access or oversight over your operations within the software.
Coin Wallet is suited to the needs of both beginners and professional crypto users. It comes as free software with simple and streamlined interfaces in both mobile and desktop versions. The wallet supports any ERC20 and ERC223 tokens, including Bitcoin, Litecoin, Dogecoin, Bitcoin Cash, EOS, Ripple, Stellar, and Ethereum.
Of all the wallets on the market, Coin Wallet offers one of the most exhaustive collections of coins. Currently, there are more than 20,000 supported cryptocurrencies. The app gets bonus points for convenience, providing two built-in exchanges: Changelly and ShapeShift.

Blockchain

In 2011, Blockchain wallet pioneered the niche of online wallets. It remains one of the market leaders in wallets offering user-controlled keys. Currently, the company has over 41M wallets and more than $200B in transactions have been made on it since its start.
The mobile app is available in multiple languages and offers a built-in exchange for fast trading. Interfaces are very easy to follow and intuitive. The major drawback of this veteran wallet is that it supports just 5 coins: Bitcoin (BTC), Ether (ETH), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Stellar (XLM), and USD PAX (PAX).

Exodus

Exodus comes as a download for desktop or mobile. In addition to giving you control of your private keys, it also allows you to export them, as well. Plus, as an extra security measure, it never stores private keys on the server.
This wallet may not suit the needs of all users, as there is no web version and English is the only supported language.
The app lists 100+ crypto coins and offers ShapeShift as a built-in exchange.

Armory

Armory wallet is a great choice for users who want a simple storage option for their crypto assets. It offers some offline functionality, as well as free cold storage. It also lets you back up private keys (a QR code) on paper or create a multi-signature wallet. The latter option is particularly useful for businesses.
A major drawback of this wallet is that it is the least user-friendly option. Users need to have some basic knowledge encryption and software set-up. In addition, sending digital assets with Armory is less convenient than competitors and it doesn’t offer any built-in exchanges.

Bitcoin Core

Launched by the Bitcoin project, Bitcoin Core has a simple interface and is compatible with Mac, Linux, and Windows. It allows users to check the full node of Bitcoin transactions, i.e. download the entire blockchain. Therefore, it might take some time to download the full blockchain and set up your wallet.
A drawback of Bitcoin Core is that it’s large: you must have at least 200GB free disk space for this software, and system requirements constantly increase as the full Bitcoin network node grows.
As its name suggests, Bitcoin Core supports only Bitcoin. If you plan on trading and using only Bitcoin, this wallet is a great choice. Because you keep the full node on your computer, you don’t need any third parties to verify transactions. Sending or receiving coins here is very simple, and you are directly connected to the full Bitcoin network node. The fees are decided on by user votes.
submitted by GTE_IO to u/GTE_IO [link] [comments]

Types of cryptocurrency wallets. Advantages and disadvantages

In order to increase the security level of your funds, you can use wallets. They have a higher level of protection in comparison with the exchanges. In this article, you will get to know about the advantages and disadvantages of wallets, get acquainted with their varieties and the most popular examples.

What is a digital wallet?

A digital wallet is a place to store your public and private keys. It consists of a private key and a public key (in our previous article you can learn more about what private and public keys are).

Hot and cold wallet

Cold wallets are a way to store funds offline. These include any tools that are not tied to the network. Cold storage eliminates the interaction of the wallet and the online network, which significantly reduces the likelihood of theft.
Advantages: Higher security. The possibility of offline storage.
Disadvantages: Poorly adapted for regular payments. May be lost with the carrier. Require backup.
Hot wallets are programs designed to store digital coins with a constant Internet connection which allows you to send cryptocurrencies anywhere.
Advantages: Great for regular and micropayments. Convenient and easy to use. Do not require physical media.
Disadvantages: Can be hacked. Always connected to the Internet. If you uninstall the program, you may lose access to your wallet forever.

Types of wallets

There are five types of digital storage that you can use.
1. Online Wallet This is a service owned by a third party. Depending on the wallet device, the keys are stored on a remote server or downloaded as an encrypted file to the user’s computer. They allow not only to open several wallets for different cryptocurrencies, but also to carry out convertible operations, trade on exchanges, calculate commissions with the help of built-in calculators, etc.
Advantages: Quick registration. Anonymity. Verification is not necessary. Ability to work with multiple cryptocurrencies.
Disadvantages: Risks inherent in cryptocurrency exchanges. There is a possibility of wallet to be hacked. Additional expenditure.
There are no reliable ways to protect funds on such platforms. Therefore, recommendations for the protection of funds are reduced to the diversification of risks, that is, working simultaneously with several wallets.
Examples of popular online wallets: HolyTransaction. The multi-currency wallet, founded in 2014, supports more than 10 of the most popular cryptocurrencies. It has an intuitive interface, Commission in comparison with other wallets. Coinbase. The wallet, created in 2012, supports bitcoin and ether. Cryprtonator. The most popular multi-currency wallet in the CIS.
2. Mobile Wallet This is a program to install on mobile gadgets. Interesting for those for whom cryptocurrency is a means of payment for goods and services. The current version of the blockchain is usually stored on the application server that provides access to updated data and does not require a large download of data to the phone.
Advantages: It can be safer than online wallets. Conveniently use on the go. Offer additional features such as QR code scanning.
Disadvantages: Unfortunately, mobile wallets are not the most secure. Therefore, it is hardly suitable for storing large amounts of funds.
Examples of popular mobile wallets: Coinomi. One of the best wallets for Android that supports more than 50 cryptocurrencies. Its advantage is the ability to enter seed-phrase, which allows you to recover wallet data. Xapo. Wallet from California company that supports Bitcoin. Access to the funds in the wallet is insured, it is possible to issue a debit card, you need to bind a mobile number.
3. Hardware wallet
This is a separate removable device like a flash drive. This method of storing keys is not very popular yet, because it is suitable only for long-term storage (it is inconvenient to trade with it). But it does not overload the computer.
Advantages: Private keys are never exposed to your computer. The hardware is immune to computer viruses. Your hardware requires you to confirm a transaction on your device (not the app on your computer) before any coins can be spent.
Disadvantages: The only downside to hardware wallets is that they cost money. However, it might be worthwhile to consider investing in a hardware wallet because they are more secure; especially if you hold a significant amount of coins.
Examples of popular hardware wallets: KeepKay. Supports 4 major cryptocurrencies. Ledger Wallet. Trezor.
4. Desktop wallet
These are the programs that you install on your computer.
Advantages: Desktop wallets store keys on your hard drive. Considered that its one of the most reliable options among offline wallets. It is a program installed on your computer, with which you can access data about your cryptocurrency account.
Disadvantages: Their disadvantage is the need for constant updating, which takes a lot of memory. Because desktop programs are divided into “thick” and “thin”. “Thick” (“heavy”) program, who are themselves from the very beginning, download whole blockchain and keep them updated. “Thin” (“light”) — download the necessary information from third-party services. Despite the fact that the file with the key remains on the computer, there is a risk that the data from the services will not be downloaded the ones that are needed.
Examples of popular mobile wallets: Exodus. Has an integrated exchange platform ShareShift supports 7 cryptocurrencies. Bitcoin Core. One of the best wallets for bitcoin, working with all operating systems. Armory. In addition to Bitcoin Core, which allows you to increase the level of storage security.
5. Paper wallet
A unique option for storing keys, which is a printout of a picture with a QR-code containing a public address and a private key. Long-term storage option for those who do not trust electronics.
Example: bitaddress.org
Each wallet has its advantages and disadvantages. Which option to choose depends on the goals.
submitted by SwapSpace_co to ethtrader [link] [comments]

Types of cryptocurrency wallets. Advantages and disadvantages

In order to increase the security level of your funds, you can use wallets. They have a higher level of protection in comparison with the exchanges. In this article, you will get to know about the advantages and disadvantages of wallets, get acquainted with their varieties and the most popular examples.

What is a digital wallet?

A digital wallet is a place to store your public and private keys. It consists of a private key and a public key (in our previous article you can learn more about what private and public keys are).

Hot and cold wallet

Cold wallets are a way to store funds offline. These include any tools that are not tied to the network. Cold storage eliminates the interaction of the wallet and the online network, which significantly reduces the likelihood of theft.
Advantages: Higher security. The possibility of offline storage.
Disadvantages: Poorly adapted for regular payments. May be lost with the carrier. Require backup.
Hot wallets are programs designed to store digital coins with a constant Internet connection which allows you to send cryptocurrencies anywhere.
Advantages: Great for regular and micropayments. Convenient and easy to use. Do not require physical media.
Disadvantages: Can be hacked. Always connected to the Internet. If you uninstall the program, you may lose access to your wallet forever.

Types of wallets

There are five types of digital storage that you can use.
1. Online Wallet This is a service owned by a third party. Depending on the wallet device, the keys are stored on a remote server or downloaded as an encrypted file to the user’s computer. They allow not only to open several wallets for different cryptocurrencies, but also to carry out convertible operations, trade on exchanges, calculate commissions with the help of built-in calculators, etc.
Advantages: Quick registration. Anonymity. Verification is not necessary. Ability to work with multiple cryptocurrencies.
Disadvantages: Risks inherent in cryptocurrency exchanges. There is a possibility of wallet to be hacked. Additional expenditure.
There are no reliable ways to protect funds on such platforms. Therefore, recommendations for the protection of funds are reduced to the diversification of risks, that is, working simultaneously with several wallets.
Examples of popular online wallets: HolyTransaction. The multi-currency wallet, founded in 2014, supports more than 10 of the most popular cryptocurrencies. It has an intuitive interface, Commission in comparison with other wallets. Coinbase. The wallet, created in 2012, supports bitcoin and ether. Cryprtonator. The most popular multi-currency wallet in the CIS.
2. Mobile Wallet This is a program to install on mobile gadgets. Interesting for those for whom cryptocurrency is a means of payment for goods and services. The current version of the blockchain is usually stored on the application server that provides access to updated data and does not require a large download of data to the phone.
Advantages: It can be safer than online wallets. Conveniently use on the go. Offer additional features such as QR code scanning.
Disadvantages: Unfortunately, mobile wallets are not the most secure. Therefore, it is hardly suitable for storing large amounts of funds.
Examples of popular mobile wallets: Coinomi. One of the best wallets for Android that supports more than 50 cryptocurrencies. Its advantage is the ability to enter seed-phrase, which allows you to recover wallet data. Xapo. Wallet from California company that supports Bitcoin. Access to the funds in the wallet is insured, it is possible to issue a debit card, you need to bind a mobile number.
3. Hardware wallet
This is a separate removable device like a flash drive. This method of storing keys is not very popular yet, because it is suitable only for long-term storage (it is inconvenient to trade with it). But it does not overload the computer.
Advantages: Private keys are never exposed to your computer. The hardware is immune to computer viruses. Your hardware requires you to confirm a transaction on your device (not the app on your computer) before any coins can be spent.
Disadvantages: The only downside to hardware wallets is that they cost money. However, it might be worthwhile to consider investing in a hardware wallet because they are more secure; especially if you hold a significant amount of coins.
Examples of popular hardware wallets: KeepKay. Supports 4 major cryptocurrencies. Ledger Wallet. Trezor.
4. Desktop wallet
These are the programs that you install on your computer.
Advantages: Desktop wallets store keys on your hard drive. Considered that its one of the most reliable options among offline wallets. It is a program installed on your computer, with which you can access data about your cryptocurrency account.
Disadvantages: Their disadvantage is the need for constant updating, which takes a lot of memory. Because desktop programs are divided into “thick” and “thin”. “Thick” (“heavy”) program, who are themselves from the very beginning, download whole blockchain and keep them updated. “Thin” (“light”) — download the necessary information from third-party services. Despite the fact that the file with the key remains on the computer, there is a risk that the data from the services will not be downloaded the ones that are needed.
Examples of popular mobile wallets: Exodus. Has an integrated exchange platform ShareShift supports 7 cryptocurrencies. Bitcoin Core. One of the best wallets for bitcoin, working with all operating systems. Armory. In addition to Bitcoin Core, which allows you to increase the level of storage security.
5. Paper wallet
A unique option for storing keys, which is a printout of a picture with a QR-code containing a public address and a private key. Long-term storage option for those who do not trust electronics.
Example: bitaddress.org
Each wallet has its advantages and disadvantages. Which option to choose depends on the goals.
submitted by SwapSpace_co to BitcoinMarkets [link] [comments]

What is a Cryptocurrency Wallet?

What is a Cryptocurrency Wallet?
Use this straightforward guide to learn what a cryptocurrency wallet is, how they work and discover which ones are the best on the market.
A cryptocurrency wallet is a software program that stores private and public keys and interacts with various blockchain to enable users to send and receive digital currency and monitor their balance. If you want to use Bitcoin or any other cryptocurrency, you will need to have a digital wallet.
How do they work?
Millions of people use cryptocurrency wallets, but there is considerable misunderstanding about how they work. Unlike traditional ‘pocket’ wallets, digital wallets don’t store currency. In fact, currencies don’t get stored in any single location or exist anywhere in any physical form. All that exists are records of transactions stored on the blockchain.
Cryptocurrency wallets are software programs that store your public and private keys and interface with various blockchain so users can monitor their balance, send money and conduct other operations. When a person sends you bitcoins or any other type of digital currency, they are essentially signing off ownership of the coins to your wallet’s address. To be able to spend those coins and unlock the funds, the private key stored in your wallet must match the public address the currency is assigned to. If public and private keys match, the balance in your digital wallet will increase, and the senders will decrease accordingly. There is no actual exchange of real coins. The transaction is signified merely by a transaction record on the blockchain and a change in balance in your cryptocurrency wallet.
What are the different types of Cryptocurrencywallets?
There are several types of wallets that provide different ways to store and access your digital currency. Wallets can be broken down into three distinct categories – software, hardware, and paper. Software wallets can be a desktop, mobile or online.
Are Cryptocurrency wallets secure?
Wallets are secure to varying degrees. The level of security depends on the type of wallet you use (desktop, mobile, online, paper, hardware) and the service provider. A web server is an intrinsically riskier environment to keep your currency compared to offline. Online wallets can expose users to possible vulnerabilities in the wallet platform which can be exploited by hackers to steal your funds. Offline wallets, on the other hand, cannot be hacked because they simply aren’t connected to an online network and don’t rely on a third party for security.
Although online wallets have proven the most vulnerable and prone to hacking attacks, diligent security precautions need to be implemented and followed when using any wallet. Remember that no matter which wallet you use, losing your private keys will lead you to lose your money. Similarly, if your wallet gets hacked, or you send money to a scammer, there is no way to reclaim lost currency or reverse the transaction. You must take precautions and be very careful!
Although Bitcoin is by far the most well-known and popular digital currency, hundreds of newcryptocurrencies (referred to as altcoins) have emerged, each with distinctive ecosystems and infrastructure. If you’re interested in using a variety of cryptocurrencies, the good news is, you don’t need set up a separate wallet for each currency. Instead of using a cryptocurrency wallet that supports a single currency, it may be more convenient to set up a multi-currency wallet which enables you to use several currencies from the same wallet.
Are there any transaction fees?
There is no straightforward answer here.
In general, transaction fees are a tiny fraction of traditional bank fees. Sometimes fees need to be paid for certain types of transactions to network miners as a processing fee, while some transactions don’t have any fee at all. It’s also possible to set your own fee. As a guide, the median transaction size of 226 bytes would result in a fee of 18,080 satoshis or $0.12. In some cases, if you choose to set a low fee, your transaction may get low priority, and you might have to wait hours or even days for the transaction to get confirmed. If you need your transaction completed and confirmed promptly, then you might need to increase the amount you’re willing to pay. Whatever wallet you end up using, transaction fees are not something you should worry about. You will either pay minuscule transaction fees, choose your own fees or pay no fees at all. A definite improvement from the past!
Are cryptocurrency wallets anonymous?
Kind of, but not really. Wallets are pseudonymous. While wallets aren’t tied to the actual identity of a user, all transactions are stored publicly and permanently on the blockchain. Your name or personal street address won’t be there, but data like your wallet address could be traced to your identity in a number of ways. While there are efforts underway to make anonymity and privacy easier to achieve, there are obvious downsides to full anonymity. Check out the DarkWallet project that is looking to beef up privacy and anonymity through stealth addresses and coin mixing.
Which Cryptocurrency wallet is the best?
There is an ever-growing list of options. Before picking a wallet, you should, however, consider how you intend to use it.
Bread Wallet
Bread Wallet is a simple mobile Bitcoin digital wallet that makes sending bitcoins as easy as sending an email. The wallet can be downloaded from the App Store or Google Play. Bread Wallet offers a standalone client, so there is no server to use when sending or receiving bitcoins. That means users can access their money and are in full control of their funds at all times. Overall, Bread Wallet’s clean interface, lightweight design and commitment to continually improve security, make the application safe, fast and a pleasure to use for both beginners and experienced users alike.
Mycelium
Advanced users searching for a Bitcoin mobile digital wallet, should look no further than mycelium. The Mycelium mobile wallet allows iPhone and Android users to send and receive bitcoins and keep complete control over bitcoins. No third party can freeze or lose your funds! With enterprise-level security superior to most other apps and features like cold storage and encrypted PDF backups, an integrated QR-code scanner, a local trading marketplace and secure chat amongst others, you can understand why Mycelium has long been regarded as one of the best wallets on the market.
Exodus
Exodus is a relatively new and unknown digital wallet that is currently only available on the desktop. It enables the storage and trading of Bitcoin, Ether, Litecoins, Dogecoins and Dash through an incredibly easy to use, intuitive and beautiful interface. Exodus also offers a very simple guide to backup your wallet. One of the great things about Exodus is that it has a built-in shapeshift exchange that allows users to trade altcoins for bitcoins and vice versa without leaving the wallet.
Copay
Created by Bitpay, Copay is one of the best digital wallets on the market. If you’re looking for convenience, Copay is easily accessed through a user-friendly interface on desktop, mobile or online. One of the best things about Copay is that it’s a multi-signature wallet so friends or business partners can share funds. Overall, Copay has something for everyone. It’s simple enough for entry-level users but has plenty of additional geeky features that will impress more experienced players as well.
Jaxx
Jaxx is a multi-currency Ether, Ether Classic, Dash, DAO, Litecoin, REP, Zcash, Rootstock, Bitcoin wallet and user interface. Jaxx has been designed to deliver a smooth Bitcoin and Ethereum experience. It is available on a variety of platforms and devices (Windows, Linux, Chrome, Firefox, OSX, Android mobile & tablet, iOS mobile & tablet) and connects with websites through Firefox and Chrome extensions. Jaxx allows in wallet conversion between Bitcoin, Ether and DAO tokens via Shapeshift and the import of Ethereum paper wallets. With an array of features and the continual integration of new currencies, Jaxx is an excellent choice for those who require a multi-currency wallet.
Armory
Armory is an open source Bitcoin desktop wallet perfect for experienced users that place emphasis on security. Some of Armory’s features include cold storage, multi-signature transactions, one-time printable backups, multiple wallets interface, GPU-resistant wallet encryption, key importing, key sweeping and more. Although Armory takes a little while to understand and use to it’s full potential, it’s a great option for more tech-savvy bitcoiners looking to keep their funds safe and secure.
Trezor is a hardware Bitcoin wallet that is ideal for storing large amounts of bitcoins. Trezor cannot be infected by malware and never exposes your private keys which make it as safe as holding traditional paper money. Trezor is open source and transparent, with all technical decisions benefiting from wider community consultation. It’s easy to use, has an intuitive interface and is Windows, OS X and Linux friendly. One of the few downsides of the Trezor wallet is that it must be with you to send bitcoins. This, therefore, makes Trezor best for inactive savers, investors or people who want to keep large amounts of Bitcoin highly secure.
Ledger Nano
The Ledger Wallet Nano is a new hierarchical deterministic multisig hardware wallet for bitcoin users that aims to eliminate a number of attack vectors through the use of a second security layer. This tech-heavy description does not mean much to the average consumer, though, which is why I am going to explain it in plain language, describing what makes the Ledger Wallet Nano tick. In terms of hardware, the Ledger Wallet Nano is a compact USB device based on a smart card. It is roughly the size of a small flash drive, measuring 39 x 13 x 4mm (1.53 x 0.51 x 0.16in) and weighing in at just 5.9g.
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Green Address
Green Address is a user-friendly Bitcoin wallet that’s an excellent choice for beginners. Green Address is accessible via desktop, online or mobile with apps available for Chrome, iOS, and Android. Features include multi-signature addresses & two-factor authentications for enhanced security, paper wallet backup, and instant transaction confirmation. A downside is that Green Address is required to approve all payments, so you do not have full control over your spending
Blockchain (dot) info
Blockchain is one of the most popular Bitcoin wallets. Accessing this wallet can be done from any browser or smartphone. Blockchain.info provides two different additional layers. For the browser version, users can enable two-factor authentication, while mobile users can activate a pin code requirement every time the wallet application is opened. Although your wallet will be stored online and all transactions will need to go through the company’s servers, Blockchain.info does not have access to your private keys. Overall, this is a well-established company that is trusted throughout the Bitcoin community and makes for a solid wallet to keep your currency.
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Armory Tutorial Part 1

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