Kazakhstan disrupts the cryptocurrency market and the price of Bitcoin
Kazakhstan sends the cryptocurrency market and the price of Bitcoin into a tailspin, with street protests following the energy crisis following market liberalization.
Bitcoin in red
At the time of writing, Bitcoin is losing 6% and is quoted at $ 43,400, Ethereum is losing 7.3% to $ 3,500. Solana, Terra (LUNA), Crypto.com (CRO), Cosmos (ATOM) do worse, with losses up to 10%.
The wave of sales was probably triggered by the energy crisis in Kazakhstan, which has become one of the shores where Bitcoin mining has moved following the ban from China.
Bitcoin mining is now concentrated in Kazakhstan
Bitcoin mining among the causes of the Kazakhstan crisis
Kazakhstan is on the verge of an energy and political crisis, as protests linked to the increase in the price of LPG have flared up in assaults on government buildings, in clashes with the army, in deaths and arrests and in the proclamation of the state of emergency.
To cut off communications, the government has disabled the internet, cell phones, social networks, hoping that this will prevent the rioters from coordinating. This has also led to the blocking of mining activities, which in Kazakhstan have found fertile ground precisely due to the high presence of fuels at ridiculously low prices.
But this is the effect and also the cause of the crises, because mining companies absorb a monstrous amount of electricity necessary to complete the algorithms that allow the validation of transactions and the mining of blocks. This also led to the price going up.
According to the Financial Times, nearly 90,000 crypto mining companies chose Kazakhstan in 2021 after being forced out of China. If Kazakhstan turns off the power and stops the internet, Bitcoin mining can stop.
A yardstick will be provided by the hashrate, which from the latest Coinwartz graphs actually seems stable, while according to Coingape the blackout would have already led to a 12% collapse. Certainly the impact on the hashrate would be the measure of how much the crisis in Kazakhstan may also weigh on BTC mining.
It certainly hit the price, leading Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies to lose important support levels. For Bitcoin it will now be essential to keep our nerve and not go back below 40,000 dollars.
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Journalist with a passion for the web and the digital world. She graduated with honors in Multimedia Publishing from the La Sapienza University of Rome and attended a master’s degree in Web and Social Media Marketing.
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Cryptocurrency seizures boom in 2021
By Vincenzo Cacioppoli – 8 Jan 2022
2021 was an explosive year for cryptocurrencies and their expansion was at all levels, including for use for criminal purposes. According to the report of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), which deals with the collection of taxes in the United States, in 2021 seizures of cryptocurrencies worth 3.5 billion dollars were carried out. And the trend, according to analysts from the American federal agency, is set to increase in the next year.
Cryptocurrency seizures, from 2021 to 2022
“I expect a trend towards cryptocurrency seizures to continue as we advance into fiscal year 22”
This said the head of the criminal investigation of the IRS, Jim Lee during a press conference, adding about the expectations for 2022 that:
“We expect it to stay in that range for a while, based on some investigations we are currently working on that are quite large in size and scope. We could exceed this figure next year “.
The Silk Road case
More than 1 billion dollars of the sum seized by the IRS derives from the record seizure carried out in Silk Road, a company that is the protagonist of one of the largest trades of illegal products in history on the dark web, made possible thanks to payment with Bitcoin.
In fact, at the time of the first seizure in 2015, the bitcoins held on Silk Road were worth $ 250 each, for a total value of around $ 16 million. But the growth of Bitcoin prices in recent years has brought their value to over a billion dollars.
The IRS tools are strengthened
In the infrastructure law recently approved by the US Congress, the federal agency has been granted additional funds and tools, precisely to fight against fraud committed through digital assets.
This law among other things obliges cryptocurrency brokers to track and report transactions to the IRS, in an attempt to give tax authorities greater visibility on virtual currency exchanges.
In addition, the agency has already agreed to hire about 200 people who deal exclusively with cybercrime.
The DeFi-related crimes were worth $ 10 billion
DeFi crimes worth $ 10 billion
On the other hand, cryptocurrency crimes increased significantly in 2021. According to some estimates, only the value of crimes related to DeFi would amount to about 10 billion dollars in the year just ended.
The crimes most related to cryptocurrencies according to the Crime report 2021 by the Chainalysis company, are certainly those related to money laundering and computer crimes, such as ransomware attacks, with a ransom request in cryptocurrencies in exchange for data stolen by cyber pirates.
In 2021, this type of attack would have yielded about $ 33 million in cryptocurrencies, according to the Chainalysis report.
Also in the report, it is clear that in 2021, thanks also to their ever greater diffusion, fraud against Bitcoin ATMs has increased enormously.
Finally, in this regard, the FBI warned in a report at the end of November of the presence in the US of fraud schemes that use cryptocurrency ATMs and quick response QR codes to facilitate payments.
“The FBI has seen an increase in scammers who direct victims to use physical cryptocurrency ATMs and digital QR codes to complete payment transactions.”
This is stated in the report.