An overview of current news in the crypto space

Bit Team
5 min readMay 6, 2024

In our digest, we reviewed several important crypto-industry news over the past week:

  1. The Russian State Duma has introduced a bill to regulate the cryptocurrency market;
  2. Tether blocked more than $1 billion USDT on crypto wallets;
  3. Bitcoin blockchain processed a billion transactions;
  4. Former Binance CEO sentenced to 4 months in US prison for money laundering;
  5. The Cost of Inattention: Cryptocurrency User Paid $100,000 Fee for Transferring $6

Now for more details. Reading time: 8 minutes.

The Russian State Duma has presented a bill to regulate the cryptocurrency market

A new bill presented in the Russian State Duma proposes to take measures to regulate the country’s cryptocurrency market, which has so far developed without strict legal control. The bill is designed to legalize mining under strict state control and prohibit the organization of cryptocurrency circulation in the country. According to this bill, legal entities and individual entrepreneurs will be able to engage in mining only after inclusion in a special register. All miners, regardless of their status, will be obliged to report to Rosfinmonitoring about the received cryptocurrency and provide data on their wallets. However, the new bill is drawing criticism among representatives of the crypto industry. The main complaint is the lack of incentive nature of the bill, which would support the development of the industry and not only restrict it. Despite the criticism, representatives of the State Duma claim that the legislation can be finalized in the process of its adoption. A decision on the bill is expected in the coming months.

Tether has blocked more than $1 billion USDT on crypto wallets

Tether, the issuer of the stablecoin cryptocurrency USDT, is actively using its powers to block funds on cryptocurrency wallets. More than $1 billion has already been blocked, mostly on wallets on the US sanctions list. Such actions have raised doubts in the cryptocurrency community about Tether’s compliance with the principles of decentralization and freedom. Such measures were taken after a large amount of USDT was stolen in 2017. In response, the company introduced the ability to block assets and transactions from certain cryptocurrency wallets. This has raised concerns as Tether has absolute control over the issuance and circulation of its stablecoin. On the other hand, Tether is actively cooperating with authorities in different countries to ensure transparency and security in the cryptocurrency industry. Tools to track transactions and identify wallets associated with illegal activities include sanctions monitoring and illegal transfer detection. Ultimately, the question remains: should the cryptocurrency community abandon USDT in favor of more decentralized stable coins, or will Tether be able to maintain trust in its coin despite the possibility of blockchains?

Bitcoin blockchain has processed one billion transactions

The bitcoin blockchain has reached an important historical moment by processing one billion transactions. This happened on block #842,241, mined by the Foundry USA pool. Over the 15 years of its existence, the bitcoin network has processed an average of 178,475 transactions per day. It is interesting to note that the total did not include transactions made on layer 2 networks such as the Lightning Network. In the summer of 2023, the number of routed transactions on this network increased to over 6 million in a month. A surge of activity in the bitcoin blockchain occurred after the halving on April 20, 2024, when the number of transactions in a single day reached a record 926,842. This was made possible by the launch of the Runes protocol, which was introduced by creator Casey Rodamore in the fall of 2023. The Runes protocol improved the bitcoin network infrastructure by utilizing the UTXO model and speeding up transactions. However, it is worth noting that bitcoin is not the first blockchain to break the 1 billion transaction mark. For example, the Ethereum network has processed more than 2 billion transactions since its launch in 2015. Despite this, bitcoin is still a key player in the cryptocurrency market.

Former head of Binance sentenced to four months in prison in the US for money laundering

The founder and former head of cryptocurrency exchange Binance, Changpeng Zhao, was sentenced to four months in prison in the United States for violating money laundering laws. Prosecutors had demanded a harsher sentence of three years, but Judge Richard Jones determined a lighter sentence. At the hearing, it was noted that Zhao did not have specific information about Binance’s illegal activities, which was the basis for the lenient sentence. At the same time, prosecution representative Kevin Mosley emphasized the seriousness of the crime, arguing that the punishment should serve as a warning to others. Prior to sentencing, Zhao publicly apologized for his actions and accepted responsibility for Binance’s failure to provide effective anti-money laundering controls. Amid the allegations, Binance announced that Zhao was stepping down as CEO of the company. Last November, the U.S. Department of Justice said the cryptocurrency exchange should pay more than $4 billion for violating U.S. laws. The allegations involved both failure to comply with bank secrecy and money laundering laws and operating an unregistered exchange.

The cost of inattention: A cryptocurrency user paid $100,000 in fees for transferring $6

There has been an event in the world of cryptocurrencies that has once again reminded us of the importance of caution when transacting in digital assets. Recently, a transaction was recorded on the bitcoin network that became one of the most expensive in the history of the blockchain.

An unknown crypto investor sent a paltry amount of 0.0001 BTC (roughly $6) to another address. However, during the process of creating the transaction, he probably confused the “transfer amount” and “commission” fields, specifying a commission of 1.59 BTC. This is equivalent to almost $100,000 at the current exchange rate — an unprecedented amount for a crypto transfer fee.

Cryptocurrency experts believe that this event is the result of a simple oversight. Mistakes of this kind happen, but they usually involve much smaller amounts. In this case, inattention cost the user a fabulous amount.

Given the way the bitcoin blockchain works, the probability of recovering the overpaid commission to miners is extremely low. This case is a clear example of how important it is to be careful when making transactions with digital currencies. This costly “oversight” has become a lesson to many crypto investors about the importance of caution when dealing with digital assets.

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