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(PC Magazine)   I see you're mining bitcoin. I'd like you to have a seat over there   ( pcmag.com) divider line
    More: Scary, Pornography, non-financial data, blockchain, Child pornography, RWTH Aachen University, RWTH Aachen, German Universities Excellence Initiative, child pornography  
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4241 clicks; posted to Geek » on 20 Mar 2018 at 8:35 AM (26 weeks ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



49 Comments     (+0 »)
 
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2018-03-20 06:31:05 AM  
I'm shocked, SHOCKED, that a cryptocurrency, designed to thwart the eyes of governments, was used for something like child pornography.  Embedding it in the blockchain itself seems foolish.
 
2018-03-20 08:10:04 AM  

JasonOfOrillia: I'm shocked, SHOCKED, that a cryptocurrency, designed to thwart the eyes of governments, was used for something like child pornography.  Embedding it in the blockchain itself seems foolish.


My first thought is someone putting it there to sabotage a particular block chain to give a competitor a leg up.
 
2018-03-20 08:38:42 AM  
...just wait until someone plants viruses and worms in the blockchain...

/Oh, who am I kidding? It's probably already happened...
 
2018-03-20 08:41:30 AM  

IlGreven: ...just wait until someone plants viruses and worms in the blockchain...

/Oh, who am I kidding? It's probably already happened...


Actually, TFA was about people looking in the blockchain for malware and finding none, but finding child porn.

I found out today that the blockchain has reached over 150GB...
 
2018-03-20 08:49:26 AM  

dready zim: IlGreven: ...just wait until someone plants viruses and worms in the blockchain...

/Oh, who am I kidding? It's probably already happened...

Actually, TFA was about people looking in the blockchain for malware and finding none, but finding child porn.

I found out today that the blockchain has reached over 150GB...


Yeah. Try downloading a wallet to use on your computer. The first thing it'll do is download the entire blockchain. Seems like a pretty big design flaw.
 
2018-03-20 08:57:48 AM  
Article stated it was possiblya minor. There are hundreds of perfectly legal vids/pics out there of possible (but not) minors. Heck, I bet there's even a robust employment market for women that are of legal age but can somewhat pass for not.

Same play out of the standard playbook. If there's something the powers that be don't like, link it to terrorism and/or child porn. Pearl-clutchers will only read the headlines, deduce that since they have no idea what a bitcoin is, it must be evil, and copy/paste into FB. Then, shiat-for-brains congressmen will scramble to score points with their constituents with idiotic, uninformed, alarmist soundbites on national news networks. Good thing bitcoin hasn't been "linked" to financing terrorism yet. Oh wait...
 
2018-03-20 09:07:40 AM  
Bitcoin minors?
 
2018-03-20 09:08:00 AM  
That there's any type of image file embedded in the Bitcoin blockchain at all represents an enormous exploit vector, whether or not that particular image comprises illegal content.
 
2018-03-20 09:11:42 AM  

poot_rootbeer: That there's any type of image file embedded in the Bitcoin blockchain at all represents an enormous exploit vector, whether or not that particular image comprises illegal content.


But not because it's an image. The "exploit vector" is because non-transactional data can be embedded in the blockchain. But that's like saying your hard drive is an exploit vector, because things could be loaded onto it.
 
2018-03-20 09:14:53 AM  

spacechecker: Article stated it was possiblya minor. There are hundreds of perfectly legal vids/pics out there of possible (but not) minors. Heck, I bet there's even a robust employment market for women that are of legal age but can somewhat pass for not.

Same play out of the standard playbook. If there's something the powers that be don't like, link it to terrorism and/or child porn. Pearl-clutchers will only read the headlines, deduce that since they have no idea what a bitcoin is, it must be evil, and copy/paste into FB. Then, shiat-for-brains congressmen will scramble to score points with their constituents with idiotic, uninformed, alarmist soundbites on national news networks. Good thing bitcoin hasn't been "linked" to financing terrorism yet. Oh wait...


Funny, you just described the NRA, albeit with a mirror......
 
2018-03-20 09:20:32 AM  

JasonOfOrillia: I'm shocked, SHOCKED, that a cryptocurrency, designed to thwart the eyes of governments, was used for something like child pornography.  Embedding it in the blockchain itself seems foolish.


This was always the weird thing about bitcoin to me was that I first heard about it from law enforcement because child pornographers were using it to thwart authorities and then like out of nowhere the thing takes off in mainstream popularity and it's on every news site and people talk about it on christmas and so-on. Obviously the base function of it doesn't determine what it gets used for - but that first impression never really went away so it was bizarre and surreal.
 
2018-03-20 09:32:10 AM  
Something designed to elude detection seems on its face to be an attempt to elude the law.

What doesn't make a lot of sense to me, and I'll confess not to being an expert in this area, is that blockchain is supposed to preserve in perpetuity every modification it endures. Doesn't this seem like the worst place to put anything illicit?

Educate me on what I'm missing. Or help the authorities convict them. Or both.
 
2018-03-20 09:38:18 AM  

casual disregard: Something designed to elude detection seems on its face to be an attempt to elude the law.

What doesn't make a lot of sense to me, and I'll confess not to being an expert in this area, is that blockchain is supposed to preserve in perpetuity every modification it endures. Doesn't this seem like the worst place to put anything illicit?

Educate me on what I'm missing. Or help the authorities convict them. Or both.


As noted above, this was almost certainly an attempt to sabotage the blockchain. It was three images, non-encrypted and publicly viewable. It wasn't some dude's multi-gigabyte stash of child porn that he was hoping to keep secret, it was showing that, due to its public and immutable nature, the block chain was vulnerable to inclusion of illegal material. The choice of child porn was showy - they could've done the same thing by including the source code for DeCSS or the Windows Installer or a rip of Star Wars.
 
2018-03-20 09:43:05 AM  

BizarreMan: JasonOfOrillia: I'm shocked, SHOCKED, that a cryptocurrency, designed to thwart the eyes of governments, was used for something like child pornography.  Embedding it in the blockchain itself seems foolish.

My first thought is someone putting it there to sabotage a particular block chain to give a competitor a leg up.


Those bastards at Dogecoin will do anything to make us take them seriously. Wow.
 
2018-03-20 10:00:45 AM  

Theaetetus: Bitcoin minors?


img.fark.netView Full Size


"Miners, not minors!"

".... You lost me."
 
2018-03-20 10:04:26 AM  

BizarreMan: JasonOfOrillia: I'm shocked, SHOCKED, that a cryptocurrency, designed to thwart the eyes of governments, was used for something like child pornography.  Embedding it in the blockchain itself seems foolish.

My first thought is someone putting it there to sabotage a particular block chain to give a competitor a leg up.


Or in this case, two small legs up.

/aisle seat
 
2018-03-20 10:16:46 AM  

Theaetetus: casual disregard: Something designed to elude detection seems on its face to be an attempt to elude the law.

What doesn't make a lot of sense to me, and I'll confess not to being an expert in this area, is that blockchain is supposed to preserve in perpetuity every modification it endures. Doesn't this seem like the worst place to put anything illicit?

Educate me on what I'm missing. Or help the authorities convict them. Or both.

As noted above, this was almost certainly an attempt to sabotage the blockchain. It was three images, non-encrypted and publicly viewable. It wasn't some dude's multi-gigabyte stash of child porn that he was hoping to keep secret, it was showing that, due to its public and immutable nature, the block chain was vulnerable to inclusion of illegal material. The choice of child porn was showy - they could've done the same thing by including the source code for DeCSS or the Windows Installer or a rip of Star Wars.


I'd like to say that I do appreciate your input both today and in the past. At the same time, my level of avoidance has not been reduced. With risk of igniting a poor discussion on the idea of value, an imaginary currency is not a location where I would store concepts of worth.

Be it resolved then that the sole conclusion is that I am genetically flawed and that I must be assassinated before these genes can continue to pollute the species. I leave this task to your gentle care.

If I remain alive after one fortnight then by natural rights I will pollute. Either way, forever shall humanity be changed. Or not.
 
2018-03-20 10:28:54 AM  

casual disregard: Theaetetus: casual disregard: Something designed to elude detection seems on its face to be an attempt to elude the law.

What doesn't make a lot of sense to me, and I'll confess not to being an expert in this area, is that blockchain is supposed to preserve in perpetuity every modification it endures. Doesn't this seem like the worst place to put anything illicit?

Educate me on what I'm missing. Or help the authorities convict them. Or both.

As noted above, this was almost certainly an attempt to sabotage the blockchain. It was three images, non-encrypted and publicly viewable. It wasn't some dude's multi-gigabyte stash of child porn that he was hoping to keep secret, it was showing that, due to its public and immutable nature, the block chain was vulnerable to inclusion of illegal material. The choice of child porn was showy - they could've done the same thing by including the source code for DeCSS or the Windows Installer or a rip of Star Wars.

I'd like to say that I do appreciate your input both today and in the past. At the same time, my level of avoidance has not been reduced. With risk of igniting a poor discussion on the idea of value, an imaginary currency is not a location where I would store concepts of worth.

Be it resolved then that the sole conclusion is that I am genetically flawed and that I must be assassinated before these genes can continue to pollute the species. I leave this task to your gentle care.

If I remain alive after one fortnight then by natural rights I will pollute. Either way, forever shall humanity be changed. Or not.


At current, ALL currencies currently traded are imaginary.
 
2018-03-20 10:35:28 AM  
A pron image, "possibly of a minor"?
 
2018-03-20 10:38:09 AM  

Theaetetus: poot_rootbeer: That there's any type of image file embedded in the Bitcoin blockchain at all represents an enormous exploit vector, whether or not that particular image comprises illegal content.

But not because it's an image. The "exploit vector" is because non-transactional data can be embedded in the blockchain. But that's like saying your hard drive is an exploit vector, because things could be loaded onto it.


I personally find it weird that a ledger would need to be designed to accommodate arbitrary data... Like a harddrive by necessity needs to. You need a filesystem to give the data some meaning, structure, etc.

But something like a ledger would seem to need a discrete set of data elements in a fixed structure, but it would repeat. I'd envision something more like a well indexed database table. The fact the blockchain is more like a memory heap, makes it less useful, easier to abuse, etc. By its distributed nature, it's also between unpleasant and impossible to clean up. Instead you get forks as some people want to clean it up, and others want to preserve the 'integrity' of the heap.

I can't see it being sustainable in its current form, and it seems like a pretty severe design flaw.
 
2018-03-20 10:45:07 AM  
All I and the right-thinking American public care about is that every time you use Bitcoin, or say Bitcoin, or even think the word Bitcoin, from now on you will be known to be exploiting children sexually and should be bludgeoned until society is satisfied that you have been bludgeoned enough, which is not enough.
 
2018-03-20 10:49:19 AM  
Everything about bitcoin is terrible.
 
2018-03-20 10:49:55 AM  

Quantumbunny: But something like a ledger would seem to need a discrete set of data elements in a fixed structure, but it would repeat. I'd envision something more like a well indexed database table. The fact the blockchain is more like a memory heap, makes it less useful, easier to abuse, etc.


It is indexed, though - hence how people can find transactions for their wallet. But I think where you were going is that it would have fixed fields with static definitions. I think that was the original intent, but it's expanded beyond that. Personally, I think that's a good thing - frankly, cryptocurrencies are stupid. But distributed apps and immutable ledgers can actually be pretty useful.
 
2018-03-20 10:51:16 AM  
Look for somebody who just sold off all their bitcoin. Images are inserted to crash the value, the guilty party reinvests, the pictures wind up not being minors and the exploit gets fixed, bitcoin value skyrockets again.
 
2018-03-20 10:58:26 AM  

Theaetetus: cryptocurrencies are stupid


I think it's incorrect to even call them "currencies." They're treated more like commodities to buy and sell with respect to other currencies. I can't imagine anyone in their right mind actually accepting them for goods or services. By the time a transaction even completes, the $5 worth of bitcoin you spent on a ham sandwich might be worth $10 or $2.
 
2018-03-20 10:59:16 AM  

Epicedion: Theaetetus: cryptocurrencies are stupid

I think it's incorrect to even call them "currencies." They're treated more like commodities to buy and sell with respect to other currencies. I can't imagine anyone in their right mind actually accepting them for goods or services. By the time a transaction even completes, the $5 worth of bitcoin you spent on a ham sandwich might be worth $10 or $2.


And don't forget the $15 service fee.
 
2018-03-20 11:02:44 AM  

Inebriated Bolshevik Muppet: casual disregard: Theaetetus: casual disregard: Something designed to elude detection seems on its face to be an attempt to elude the law.

What doesn't make a lot of sense to me, and I'll confess not to being an expert in this area, is that blockchain is supposed to preserve in perpetuity every modification it endures. Doesn't this seem like the worst place to put anything illicit?

Educate me on what I'm missing. Or help the authorities convict them. Or both.

As noted above, this was almost certainly an attempt to sabotage the blockchain. It was three images, non-encrypted and publicly viewable. It wasn't some dude's multi-gigabyte stash of child porn that he was hoping to keep secret, it was showing that, due to its public and immutable nature, the block chain was vulnerable to inclusion of illegal material. The choice of child porn was showy - they could've done the same thing by including the source code for DeCSS or the Windows Installer or a rip of Star Wars.

I'd like to say that I do appreciate your input both today and in the past. At the same time, my level of avoidance has not been reduced. With risk of igniting a poor discussion on the idea of value, an imaginary currency is not a location where I would store concepts of worth.

Be it resolved then that the sole conclusion is that I am genetically flawed and that I must be assassinated before these genes can continue to pollute the species. I leave this task to your gentle care.

If I remain alive after one fortnight then by natural rights I will pollute. Either way, forever shall humanity be changed. Or not.

At current, ALL currencies currently traded are imaginary.


Well, some are backed up by a government and an army and stuff.

But things are worth what people think things are worth.  Just because there's nothing behind the curtain doesn't mean, at least in the short to mid term, that they have no value.
 
2018-03-20 11:56:53 AM  

Inebriated Bolshevik Muppet: casual disregard: Theaetetus: casual disregard: Something designed to elude detection seems on its face to be an attempt to elude the law.

What doesn't make a lot of sense to me, and I'll confess not to being an expert in this area, is that blockchain is supposed to preserve in perpetuity every modification it endures. Doesn't this seem like the worst place to put anything illicit?

Educate me on what I'm missing. Or help the authorities convict them. Or both.

As noted above, this was almost certainly an attempt to sabotage the blockchain. It was three images, non-encrypted and publicly viewable. It wasn't some dude's multi-gigabyte stash of child porn that he was hoping to keep secret, it was showing that, due to its public and immutable nature, the block chain was vulnerable to inclusion of illegal material. The choice of child porn was showy - they could've done the same thing by including the source code for DeCSS or the Windows Installer or a rip of Star Wars.

I'd like to say that I do appreciate your input both today and in the past. At the same time, my level of avoidance has not been reduced. With risk of igniting a poor discussion on the idea of value, an imaginary currency is not a location where I would store concepts of worth.

Be it resolved then that the sole conclusion is that I am genetically flawed and that I must be assassinated before these genes can continue to pollute the species. I leave this task to your gentle care.

If I remain alive after one fortnight then by natural rights I will pollute. Either way, forever shall humanity be changed. Or not.

At current, ALL currencies currently traded are imaginary.


Hmm. Is there ANY currency that is gold-backed anymore?  Swiss francs, maybe?

At least THAT would be real money
 
2018-03-20 12:01:21 PM  

casual disregard: What doesn't make a lot of sense to me, and I'll confess not to being an expert in this area, is that blockchain is supposed to preserve in perpetuity every modification it endures. Doesn't this seem like the worst place to put anything illicit?


It might be the worst place to put something illicit, unless you want to make possession of the blockchain illegal. Killing crypto currencies has widespread support here.
 
2018-03-20 12:05:08 PM  

Slide10000: Inebriated Bolshevik Muppet: casual disregard: Theaetetus: casual disregard: Something designed to elude detection seems on its face to be an attempt to elude the law.

What doesn't make a lot of sense to me, and I'll confess not to being an expert in this area, is that blockchain is supposed to preserve in perpetuity every modification it endures. Doesn't this seem like the worst place to put anything illicit?

Educate me on what I'm missing. Or help the authorities convict them. Or both.

As noted above, this was almost certainly an attempt to sabotage the blockchain. It was three images, non-encrypted and publicly viewable. It wasn't some dude's multi-gigabyte stash of child porn that he was hoping to keep secret, it was showing that, due to its public and immutable nature, the block chain was vulnerable to inclusion of illegal material. The choice of child porn was showy - they could've done the same thing by including the source code for DeCSS or the Windows Installer or a rip of Star Wars.

I'd like to say that I do appreciate your input both today and in the past. At the same time, my level of avoidance has not been reduced. With risk of igniting a poor discussion on the idea of value, an imaginary currency is not a location where I would store concepts of worth.

Be it resolved then that the sole conclusion is that I am genetically flawed and that I must be assassinated before these genes can continue to pollute the species. I leave this task to your gentle care.

If I remain alive after one fortnight then by natural rights I will pollute. Either way, forever shall humanity be changed. Or not.

At current, ALL currencies currently traded are imaginary.

Hmm. Is there ANY currency that is gold-backed anymore?  Swiss francs, maybe?

At least THAT would be real money

And why is shiny yellow metal any more "real money" than paper or digital blockchains? Even gold only has value because we say it does.
 
2018-03-20 12:07:02 PM  

COMALite J: Slide10000: Inebriated Bolshevik Muppet: casual disregard: Theaetetus: casual disregard: Something designed to elude detection seems on its face to be an attempt to elude the law.

What doesn't make a lot of sense to me, and I'll confess not to being an expert in this area, is that blockchain is supposed to preserve in perpetuity every modification it endures. Doesn't this seem like the worst place to put anything illicit?

Educate me on what I'm missing. Or help the authorities convict them. Or both.

As noted above, this was almost certainly an attempt to sabotage the blockchain. It was three images, non-encrypted and publicly viewable. It wasn't some dude's multi-gigabyte stash of child porn that he was hoping to keep secret, it was showing that, due to its public and immutable nature, the block chain was vulnerable to inclusion of illegal material. The choice of child porn was showy - they could've done the same thing by including the source code for DeCSS or the Windows Installer or a rip of Star Wars.

I'd like to say that I do appreciate your input both today and in the past. At the same time, my level of avoidance has not been reduced. With risk of igniting a poor discussion on the idea of value, an imaginary currency is not a location where I would store concepts of worth.

Be it resolved then that the sole conclusion is that I am genetically flawed and that I must be assassinated before these genes can continue to pollute the species. I leave this task to your gentle care.

If I remain alive after one fortnight then by natural rights I will pollute. Either way, forever shall humanity be changed. Or not.

At current, ALL currencies currently traded are imaginary.

Hmm. Is there ANY currency that is gold-backed anymore?  Swiss francs, maybe?

At least THAT would be real money
And why is shiny yellow metal any more "real money" than paper or digital blockchains? Even gold only has value because we say it does.


Fair point...
 
2018-03-20 12:50:25 PM  
Any currency is just an agreed delusion and relative value scale.

A chicken is so much gold, or pieces of paper, or pigs.

All a pound, or dollar is, is an intermediary conversion device so we do not have to carry chickens or potatoes when we go to buy a TV. Backing your currency with a real world item, like silver or gold, places limits on the exchange rate changes that can happen to it.

In the UK 1 pound used to mean one pound of silver. Each silver penny weighed 1/244 of one pound, or about 1.85g. Collectively, 244 pennies were 'one pound' because that is what they weighed. At the current price of silver, 'one pound' is now worth nearly £380...

And that is how disconnecting your currency from an actual real world item allows you to devalue it. This helps keep poor people poor. Very useful for the rich.

Interestingly, in old fiction books where the bloke wants to marry a woman 'because she has a fortune of £10,000' that amount in today's money would be roughly £3,800,000.
 
2018-03-20 12:56:08 PM  
Ok.. so by my understanding (which may be wrong) the whole reason that blockchain works is that essentially so many PC's have the same blockchain ledger file that it is easy to verify legit cyptocurreny holders from someone who tried to forge a digital transaction or generate fake bitcoin. The ledger is essentially decentralized and no "master" exists so it can't be hacked or faked unless you attack / hack a significant majority of the PC's holding/processing Bitcoin transactions at the same time.

So, based on the article, if its possible to insert files, including potentially malware/viruses then does that make it technically feasible to insert a virus that would infect all bitcoin ledgers and after laying dormant for a few days just all the sudden add a few 0's to someone's bitcoin account? What about inserting malware into the cryptocurrency designed to make bitcoin mining machines all hesitate on submitting their blockchain blocks enough to give someone running a protected PC an advantage on mining?

I'll be honest, I only have a rudimentary level of understanding of bitcoin (if that) which is one of the many many reasons I've stayed the fark away from it. (that and it screams scam and  reeks of price manipulation).
 
2018-03-20 01:00:42 PM  
When money was first introduced, all they were was a note from one bank to another to say you had given them so much of a resource, and the bank at your destination would honour that. They were even personal, being they had your name on it and only you could redeem it. Later it was whoever carried it.

This is why they are still in the form of "I promise to pay the bearer on demand the sum of ten pounds"

With real money this promise can be honoured (you get your ten pounds of silver), and that is what makes real money real.

With our current money, if you present it to the bank, it is not honoured they just give you another promise. You get nothing real from them.

That is why some money was regarded as 'real' and the current money is not. Even 'soft yellow metal' has some intrinsic usefulness. That usefulness gives it value. As does rarity. Prices adjust to match supply and demand. As such a ten pound note has an intrinsic value in the area of less than a penny when it should be closer to £3,800.

Of course every way we judge and value the world is artificial but some of it is less artificial.
 
2018-03-20 01:03:12 PM  

keldaria: Ok.. so by my understanding (which may be wrong) the whole reason that blockchain works is that essentially so many PC's have the same blockchain ledger file that it is easy to verify legit cyptocurreny holders from someone who tried to forge a digital transaction or generate fake bitcoin. The ledger is essentially decentralized and no "master" exists so it can't be hacked or faked unless you attack / hack a significant majority of the PC's holding/processing Bitcoin transactions at the same time.

So, based on the article, if its possible to insert files, including potentially malware/viruses then does that make it technically feasible to insert a virus that would infect all bitcoin ledgers and after laying dormant for a few days just all the sudden add a few 0's to someone's bitcoin account? What about inserting malware into the cryptocurrency designed to make bitcoin mining machines all hesitate on submitting their blockchain blocks enough to give someone running a protected PC an advantage on mining?

I'll be honest, I only have a rudimentary level of understanding of bitcoin (if that) which is one of the many many reasons I've stayed the fark away from it. (that and it screams scam and  reeks of price manipulation).


To my mind as well, if you can put an image in it, you can put code in it. If you can find a way of running that code on the target machine then once your code has propagated through the blockchain you could activate it.

Unless all changes are hashed and checked by a monitoring computer or server somewhere which would flag up the bad transaction of course.
 
2018-03-20 01:26:10 PM  

keldaria: Ok.. so by my understanding (which may be wrong) the whole reason that blockchain works is that essentially so many PC's have the same blockchain ledger file that it is easy to verify legit cyptocurreny holders from someone who tried to forge a digital transaction or generate fake bitcoin. The ledger is essentially decentralized and no "master" exists so it can't be hacked or faked unless you attack / hack a significant majority of the PC's holding/processing Bitcoin transactions at the same time.


Yep, that's essentially it. Lots of copies of the ledger, and if one malicious actor changes their copy, it won't match anyone else's and the malicious one will be ignored.

So, based on the article, if its possible to insert files, including potentially malware/viruses then does that make it technically feasible to insert a virus that would infect all bitcoin ledgers and after laying dormant for a few days just all the sudden add a few 0's to someone's bitcoin account?

Yes for the former, but not for the latter. It's trivial to insert any data into the blockchain, which is what this was probably intended to show. But it's just stagnant data. It's a virus in the same way that you can download the source code for a virus, but if you never compile and execute it, you're not infected.

Now, on some cryptocurrencies like Ethereum, they include "smart contracts", which are executable. But they don't execute in the blockchain - rather, they get executed by the miner, and the result is added to the chain. So, for example, you create and store code that says "check for a new document, add a signature to it and calculate a hash, and store the hash on the chain" and then have a way to digitally notarize documents. You later upload a document and a reference to your earlier code, the miner adds the signature and calculates the hash and stores the result.
So, anyone who gets a copy of the ledger can see your notarization code, and they can see the resulting hash for the document. But it's not as if merely looking at the ledger executes the code.

What about inserting malware into the cryptocurrency designed to make bitcoin mining machines all hesitate on submitting their blockchain blocks enough to give someone running a protected PC an advantage on mining?

You could theoretically send a really complicated contract that would slow down the miners (e.g. calculate pi to a quadrillion places and then store mod 8 of the result on the chain) and ignore it yourself, but those miners are going to charge you to execute it... and if it's really complex, they're going to charge you a lot. You'll end up losing far more than you can make.
 
2018-03-20 01:57:08 PM  

dready zim: That is why some money was regarded as 'real' and the current money is not. Even 'soft yellow metal' has some intrinsic usefulness. That usefulness gives it value. As does rarity. Prices adjust to match supply and demand. As such a ten pound note has an intrinsic value in the area of less than a penny when it should be closer to £3,800.


Realistically, gold being actually useful makes it worse as money. For something to be good as money, it should be carry little to no usefulness outside being used for exchange. Otherwise, your money's value will fluctuate pretty hard with the current market value of its basic utility.
 
2018-03-20 03:39:34 PM  

casual disregard: Theaetetus: casual disregard: Something designed to elude detection seems on its face to be an attempt to elude the law.

What doesn't make a lot of sense to me, and I'll confess not to being an expert in this area, is that blockchain is supposed to preserve in perpetuity every modification it endures. Doesn't this seem like the worst place to put anything illicit?

Educate me on what I'm missing. Or help the authorities convict them. Or both.

As noted above, this was almost certainly an attempt to sabotage the blockchain. It was three images, non-encrypted and publicly viewable. It wasn't some dude's multi-gigabyte stash of child porn that he was hoping to keep secret, it was showing that, due to its public and immutable nature, the block chain was vulnerable to inclusion of illegal material. The choice of child porn was showy - they could've done the same thing by including the source code for DeCSS or the Windows Installer or a rip of Star Wars.


Or, as I said earlier, malware, viruses, worms, and other various and sundry "bad things". This was a demonstration, not an attack...but it might very well turn into one, and I'm surprised it hasn't yet.
 
2018-03-20 03:40:27 PM  

keldaria: So, based on the article, if its possible to insert files, including potentially malware/viruses then does that make it technically feasible to insert a virus that would infect all bitcoin ledgers and after laying dormant for a few days just all the sudden add a few 0's to someone's bitcoin account? What about inserting malware into the cryptocurrency designed to make bitcoin mining machines all hesitate on submitting their blockchain blocks enough to give someone running a protected PC an advantage on mining?


Anyone could put the code of a virus into the blockchain, sure. But it's just data, it's not executed, it can't actively do anything.

For example, I could (with a really sharp pen and magnifying glass) write out the DNA for a biological virus on a big piece of paper and give it to you. Would you suddenly get sick?
 
2018-03-20 04:44:10 PM  

Coder: keldaria: So, based on the article, if its possible to insert files, including potentially malware/viruses then does that make it technically feasible to insert a virus that would infect all bitcoin ledgers and after laying dormant for a few days just all the sudden add a few 0's to someone's bitcoin account? What about inserting malware into the cryptocurrency designed to make bitcoin mining machines all hesitate on submitting their blockchain blocks enough to give someone running a protected PC an advantage on mining?

Anyone could put the code of a virus into the blockchain, sure. But it's just data, it's not executed, it can't actively do anything.

For example, I could (with a really sharp pen and magnifying glass) write out the DNA for a biological virus on a big piece of paper and give it to you. Would you suddenly get sick?


The blockchain protocol is probably safe, but wallet and trading software could be vulnerable in how they read the blockchain data.  Just loading it for visualization could conceivably result in the user's computer (not the blockchain itself) being infected with malware.

Whipping up some DNA molecules sequenced after your biological virus, and then accidentally culturing and inhaling them, sounds silly of course but the software equivalent of that happens all the time.
 
2018-03-20 04:50:15 PM  

Theaetetus: poot_rootbeer: That there's any type of image file embedded in the Bitcoin blockchain at all represents an enormous exploit vector, whether or not that particular image comprises illegal content.

But not because it's an image. The "exploit vector" is because non-transactional data can be embedded in the blockchain. But that's like saying your hard drive is an exploit vector, because things could be loaded onto it.


I would call this slightly more exploitable.  If you can embed anything you want into the block chain then you also know that everyone else who's using the block chain has to read it using their block chain application.  If you know a particularly weak function that the block chain application is using to do this then you could perhaps insert a specific set of bytes to maybe create an over-flow condition or something else that could make it jump execution...to your other embedded thing that's perhaps an executable that takes over the box and...*donnes an xzibit mask* mines crypto currency and sends the results back to you.  Tada!
 
2018-03-20 06:00:29 PM  

Theaetetus: But not because it's an image. The "exploit vector" is because non-transactional data can be embedded in the blockchain. But that's like saying your hard drive is an exploit vector, because things could be loaded onto it.


Your hard drive can be seized, it can fail, it can be destroyed, you can delete the data, etc. The blockchain cannot be altered; once malicious data (be it malware or child porn) is there, it's there forever. Anyone who downloads the blockchain will posses the data they found, that's the problem. It's not that it's a particularly dangerous vector for transmission of malware, it's that the data is permanent. Once child porn is there, it's there. There's no way to dismantle the blockchain either; you would have to completely abandon it.

This is a strange can of worms.
 
2018-03-20 06:31:14 PM  

englaja: BizarreMan: JasonOfOrillia: I'm shocked, SHOCKED, that a cryptocurrency, designed to thwart the eyes of governments, was used for something like child pornography.  Embedding it in the blockchain itself seems foolish.

My first thought is someone putting it there to sabotage a particular block chain to give a competitor a leg up.

Those bastards at Dogecoin will do anything to make us take them seriously. Wow.


Such deception.
 
2018-03-20 08:28:19 PM  

COMALite J: Slide10000: Inebriated Bolshevik Muppet: casual disregard: Theaetetus: casual disregard: Something designed to elude detection seems on its face to be an attempt to elude the law.

What doesn't make a lot of sense to me, and I'll confess not to being an expert in this area, is that blockchain is supposed to preserve in perpetuity every modification it endures. Doesn't this seem like the worst place to put anything illicit?

Educate me on what I'm missing. Or help the authorities convict them. Or both.

As noted above, this was almost certainly an attempt to sabotage the blockchain. It was three images, non-encrypted and publicly viewable. It wasn't some dude's multi-gigabyte stash of child porn that he was hoping to keep secret, it was showing that, due to its public and immutable nature, the block chain was vulnerable to inclusion of illegal material. The choice of child porn was showy - they could've done the same thing by including the source code for DeCSS or the Windows Installer or a rip of Star Wars.

I'd like to say that I do appreciate your input both today and in the past. At the same time, my level of avoidance has not been reduced. With risk of igniting a poor discussion on the idea of value, an imaginary currency is not a location where I would store concepts of worth.

Be it resolved then that the sole conclusion is that I am genetically flawed and that I must be assassinated before these genes can continue to pollute the species. I leave this task to your gentle care.

If I remain alive after one fortnight then by natural rights I will pollute. Either way, forever shall humanity be changed. Or not.

At current, ALL currencies currently traded are imaginary.

Hmm. Is there ANY currency that is gold-backed anymore?  Swiss francs, maybe?

At least THAT would be real money
And why is shiny yellow metal any more "real money" than paper or digital blockchains? Even gold only has value because we say it does.


You can make shiat out of gold. Gold is a stable,  corrosion resistant metal useful for a variety of industrial and decorative roles. You got any Bitcoin transistors in your computer?
 
2018-03-20 09:17:08 PM  

Horizon: COMALite J: Slide10000: Inebriated Bolshevik Muppet: casual disregard: Theaetetus: casual disregard: Something designed to elude detection seems on its face to be an attempt to elude the law.

What doesn't make a lot of sense to me, and I'll confess not to being an expert in this area, is that blockchain is supposed to preserve in perpetuity every modification it endures. Doesn't this seem like the worst place to put anything illicit?

Educate me on what I'm missing. Or help the authorities convict them. Or both.

As noted above, this was almost certainly an attempt to sabotage the blockchain. It was three images, non-encrypted and publicly viewable. It wasn't some dude's multi-gigabyte stash of child porn that he was hoping to keep secret, it was showing that, due to its public and immutable nature, the block chain was vulnerable to inclusion of illegal material. The choice of child porn was showy - they could've done the same thing by including the source code for DeCSS or the Windows Installer or a rip of Star Wars.

I'd like to say that I do appreciate your input both today and in the past. At the same time, my level of avoidance has not been reduced. With risk of igniting a poor discussion on the idea of value, an imaginary currency is not a location where I would store concepts of worth.

Be it resolved then that the sole conclusion is that I am genetically flawed and that I must be assassinated before these genes can continue to pollute the species. I leave this task to your gentle care.

If I remain alive after one fortnight then by natural rights I will pollute. Either way, forever shall humanity be changed. Or not.

At current, ALL currencies currently traded are imaginary.

Hmm. Is there ANY currency that is gold-backed anymore?  Swiss francs, maybe?

At least THAT would be real money
And why is shiny yellow metal any more "real money" than paper or digital blockchains? Even gold only has value because we say it does.

You can make shiat out of gold. Gold ...


He doesn't have any gold transistors in his computer, either.
 
2018-03-21 12:34:24 AM  

Inebriated Bolshevik Muppet: Horizon: COMALite J: Slide10000: Inebriated Bolshevik Muppet: casual disregard: Theaetetus: casual disregard: Something designed to elude detection seems on its face to be an attempt to elude the law.

What doesn't make a lot of sense to me, and I'll confess not to being an expert in this area, is that blockchain is supposed to preserve in perpetuity every modification it endures. Doesn't this seem like the worst place to put anything illicit?

Educate me on what I'm missing. Or help the authorities convict them. Or both.

As noted above, this was almost certainly an attempt to sabotage the blockchain. It was three images, non-encrypted and publicly viewable. It wasn't some dude's multi-gigabyte stash of child porn that he was hoping to keep secret, it was showing that, due to its public and immutable nature, the block chain was vulnerable to inclusion of illegal material. The choice of child porn was showy - they could've done the same thing by including the source code for DeCSS or the Windows Installer or a rip of Star Wars.

I'd like to say that I do appreciate your input both today and in the past. At the same time, my level of avoidance has not been reduced. With risk of igniting a poor discussion on the idea of value, an imaginary currency is not a location where I would store concepts of worth.

Be it resolved then that the sole conclusion is that I am genetically flawed and that I must be assassinated before these genes can continue to pollute the species. I leave this task to your gentle care.

If I remain alive after one fortnight then by natural rights I will pollute. Either way, forever shall humanity be changed. Or not.

At current, ALL currencies currently traded are imaginary.

Hmm. Is there ANY currency that is gold-backed anymore?  Swiss francs, maybe?

At least THAT would be real money
And why is shiny yellow metal any more "real money" than paper or digital blockchains? Even gold only has value because we say it does.

You can make shiat out of gold. Gold is a stable, corrosion resistant metal useful for a variety of industrial and decorative roles. You got any Bitcoin transistors in your computer?

As Inebrieated Bolshevik Muppet alluded to, you can make shiat out of sand (silicon), too ― and a lot more things of value these days require silicon than require gold.

As has been said before, if something is inherently useful, then it becomes a good or service or at least material for making goods in and of itself, rather than a good medium of exchange for same.

The modern uses of gold weren't known back when ancient Old World civilizations decided that it had value as a medium of exchange. As I understand it, most New World societies didn't value gold as a medium of exchange, but merely wore gold jewelry as decoration.
 
2018-03-21 05:17:08 AM  

COMALite J: Inebriated Bolshevik Muppet: Horizon: COMALite J: Slide10000: Inebriated Bolshevik Muppet: casual disregard: Theaetetus: casual disregard: Something designed to elude detection seems on its face to be an attempt to elude the law.

---CLIP---
As Inebrieated Bolshevik Muppet alluded to, you can make shiat out of sand (silicon), too ― and a lot more things of value these days require silicon than require gold.

As has been said before, if something is inherently useful, then it becomes a good or service or at least material for making goods in and of itself, rather than a good medium of exchange for same.

The modern uses of gold weren't known back when ancient Old World civilizations decided that it had value as a medium of exchange. As I understand it, most New World societies didn't value gold as a medium of exchange, but merely wore gold jewelry as decoration.


And because it was also an easy metal to manipulate into jewelry. It's also non-toxic, doesn't tarnish,
and looks good against the skin..Since it's more rare than silver, it was easier to use silver for coinage
because it was just rare enough to have a intrinsic value of it's own, yet still malleable, and easy to
mint with.
 
2018-03-21 08:35:12 AM  

Epicedion: dready zim: That is why some money was regarded as 'real' and the current money is not. Even 'soft yellow metal' has some intrinsic usefulness. That usefulness gives it value. As does rarity. Prices adjust to match supply and demand. As such a ten pound note has an intrinsic value in the area of less than a penny when it should be closer to £3,800.

Realistically, gold being actually useful makes it worse as money. For something to be good as money, it should be carry little to no usefulness outside being used for exchange. Otherwise, your money's value will fluctuate pretty hard with the current market value of its basic utility.


Of course but having nothing backing the money allows much more dramatic swings.
 
2018-03-21 10:55:31 AM  
Why backup your data when you can just add it to the block chain and let others back it up for you.
 
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