Don’t call Goldman Sachs Group Inc’s long-awaited Bitcoin-trading business a full-fledged desk, and don’t expect it to buy and sell bitcoins, at least at first.
The bank, preparing to pioneer a new cryptocurrency market on Wall Street, plans to start small and offer a limited number of derivatives, according to a person briefed on the decisions. It will trade Bitcoin futures in a principal, market-making capacity and will also create non-deliverable forward products.
Wall Street firms began offering clients futures from Cboe Global Markets Inc and CME Group Inc in December. But one issue with buying and selling actual bitcoins is that they can be stolen by hackers. That means any bank looking to facilitate those transactions will have to figure out how to guard such assets, a step that could require a nod from regulators.
Goldman Sachs already hired Justin Schmidt as head of digital asset markets to help clients gain exposure to cryptocurrencies. He will sit on the firm’s currency desk, a source said, discussing internal plans.
The New York Times reported on Thursday the bank’s decision to offer forward products, noting that the business will start in the next few weeks. (Business Standard)
Amid growing crypto-jacking episodes, a North Korean hacking group called Lazarus has stolen cryptocurrencies worth more than half a billion dollars.
According to The Next Web that cited findings from the annual report of cybersecurity vendor Group-IB late on Friday, Lazarus was behind 14 hacking attacks on cryptocurrent exchanges since January 2017 — stealing $571 million.
Lazarus is a hacking group which has been linked to a string of attacks against everything from banks to government agencies across the world.
Hackers targeted cryptocurrency exchanges with spear phishing, social engineering, and malware.
“Spear phishing remains the major vector of attack on corporate networks. For instance, fraudsters deliver malware under the cover of CV spam [with an attachment] that has a malware embedded in the document,” the findings showed.
Group-IB expects the number of targeted attacks on cryptocurrency exchanges to rise, and not just the ones from Lazarus.
Nearly 10 per cent of the total funds raised by Initial Coin Offering (ICO) platforms over the past year and a half have been stolen.
According to the report, large phishing groups are capable of stealing $1 million a month.
Fraudsters are even building fake websites using stolen cryptocurrency project descriptions and plagiarized white papers.
“Fraudulent phishing-schemes involving crypto-brands will only get more complex as well as cybercriminals’ level of preparation for phishing attacks,” the group warned.
Security researchers have claimed that North Korea-based advanced persistent threat (APT) groups are increasingly attacking financial institutions and Bitcoin exchanges.
There were on average five new threat samples every second that resulted in a massive 629 per cent growth in cryptojacking and other cryptocurrency mining malware in the first quarter of 2018.
The coin miner malware grew a stunning 629 per cent to 2.9 million in the first quarter of 2018, from around 400,000 total known samples in Q4 2017, said a recent report from global cyber security firm McAfee.