Bitcoin Core works on a new scaling upgrade

Having SegWit activated, the Bitcoin Core team is now working on a new Bitcoin scaling solution
13 October 2017   1063

SegWit, a process by which the block size limit on a blockchain is increased by removing signature data from Bitcoin transaction, has successfully locked-in the Bitcoin network. Still, it seems like Bitcoin's Core developer team isn't done scaling the cryptocurrency's protocol.

Thus, while a lot of users are looking for more aggressive scaling via the controversial Segwit2x proposal, Bitcoin Core team is working on other technology called "Schnorr signatures".  It offers another signature scheme option alongside Elliptic Curve Digital Signature Algorithm (ECDSA). One benefit is that it supports "signature aggregation" on the Bitcoin blockchain. Hence, the change aims to consolidate activity that already takes place on the network with each transaction. Under the ECDSA scheme, each piece of a Bitcoin transaction is signed individually, while with Schnorr signatures, all of this data can be signed once.

As a blockstream engineer, Jonas Nick, claims to coindesk.com, this method of mashing signature data together should be considered "low-hanging fruit for helping bitcoin scale". First, by decreasing the number of signatures, it increases the amount of transaction data that can fit into each block. Second, by merging signatures, the technology could enhance privacy by making it harder to determine where transactions are coming from. Third, it's believed the change could curb "spam attacks", where one entity sends a bunch of small bitcoin transactions that take up extra space in the blockchain, potentially making nodes more difficult to run.

Bitcoin price chart on coinmarketcap.com
Bitcoin price chart on coinmarketcap.com

Meanwhile, Bitcoin price is growing: at the time of writing, the first cryptocurrency price is about $5490.12 (to the moon!), its market capitalization is $91,244,625,004. 

BTC Extortionists to Send Explosion Threats In US & CA

Police reported that explosive devices in the places specified by extortionists were not found
14 December 2018   90

In Canada and the United States, local businesses and residents received letters threatening to detonate a bomb if they did not send bitcoins to extortionists. Because of this, in some regions, law enforcement officers evacuated people from bus stations, schools and airports, reports Global News.

Extortionists threatened to blow up universities, schools, city halls and local businesses in the US states of Utah, Aidaxo, New York, Oklahoma and Illinois. The New York City Police Department urged residents not to panic or send bitcoins to criminals. Police also reported that explosive devices in the places specified by extortionists were not found.

In Canada, extortionists promised to blow up buildings and car dealerships in Toronto, Edmonton, Ottawa, Calgary and Montreal. Some residents of the attackers asked for a ransom in bitcoins in the amount of $ 20 thousand. After verification, the Calgary police stated that the messages were part of phishing attacks and did not pose a threat to the public.