MintDice is proud to bring you the fourth part of the CryptoSmarts series, a 100% unbiased/non-affiliate paid article set that will focus on relatively simple ways you can boost your privacy, take power away from overbearing governments and corporations while also doing relative good for society all at the same time with minimal effort. Rest assured that anything suggested here is solely for your own benefit.submitted by MintDiceOfficial to MintDice [link] [comments]
In this article, we'll take a deep dive into password managers, which applications to go for, how to optimize your password managers and which ones to avoid. It's of increasing importance for all users to adopt a password manager because commonly used passwords and repeated use of log-in + password combinations are the two weakest points in any normal individual's security online. Meanwhile, memorizing dozens of unique and complex passwords is beyond the scope of what most people can do, especially long term. Thus password managers have been created as a way to store multiple passwords into a single file that can help ensure your security and privacy online.
For a little encouragement, we'll share the now extremely famous dialogue between Edward Snowden and John Oliver talking about passwords. As should be painfully obvious by now, password managers are one of the best solutions to this entire dilemma.
PASSWORD MANAGER BASICSWe should first note that not all password managers are created the same as we've noted with software across all of our other articles. By and large, we'll be looking for similar characteristics in our password managers as we would our other software which includes open sourced software protocols and best software security practices. And when it comes to Bitcoin, cryptocurrency and your entire life's work on the internet, there is a lot at stake here. I'd argue that it is more important for password managers than for any other application to make sure to get this one correct since it will have your entire livelihood on the line.
The very amazing thing with demanding open sourced software for your password manager is that it by definition will also be free at the most basic level. This is because if it weren't, all it would take would be someone to fork over a program to make it free. So you are in a sense getting the best of both worlds here; a free software that is also of the highest quality. Meanwhile, ironically, many of the more commonly known password managers like Dashlane or Lastpass use closed source software and often charge fees to use their service. Funnily enough, Lastpass, the password manager itself, was actually formerly hacked in the past. One could argue this at least in part had to do with it's closed source software since having open sourced software at least in part makes software more secure. In short, do not used these closed source services that are frequently advertised for on the web as they are detrimental to you in more ways than one.
RECOMMENDED BEST PASSWORD MANAGERSBitwarden is our first recommendation. Bitwarden is truly one of the all time greats by approaching password management on the individual, team and even enterprise level to create a one size fits all solution. Bitwarden is compatible on virtually all devices out there from all desktops to mobile devices and so forth. Additionally, while they offer a centralized cloud service for free, Bitwarden is also set up to allow you to run your own private server to keep your own key base entirely under your own control, fully encrypted.
Next up we have KeePassXC which is a fork of one of the longest standing password managers in existence, formerly known as KeePass that halted a lot of it's ongoing development some time ago. KeePassXC was created as a locally held password manager application that could work across platforms. Unlike Bitwarden where your key file is held in cloud storage, KeePassXC is simply a program client and a local file that you must maintain and backup yourself. This has some pros and cons. The good news is that you have full control of everything related to KeePassXC as the program under most situations will not be talking to any online server which could expose private or sensitive information. The bad news is that if you ever were to lose control of your key file, you are completely out of luck. For this reason, it's imperative to back up your encrypted key file in multiple locations to protect against what would be catastrophic loss. You can do this with USB drives, e-mail accounts, cloud storage, safe deposit boxes or a whole host of other creative solutions that you might come up with.
The final recommended option is LessPass. LessPass is very interesting technology because it is a no-knowledge password manager. By inputting a few pieces of information which could be a master password in conjunction with an e-mail address or user name, a password is automatically attached to any URL address. It will simply cross all of these pieces of information via PBKDF2 and SHA-256 to produce random yet consistent outputs for any of your web browsing. The advantage of this program is that it is extremely light weight, and so long as you can remember your e-mail address, account name and master password, you can now gain full access to everything around the internet without the need of any files. The downside is some level of control over password flexibility since the passwords are automatically generated for you.
In summation of these three options, BitWarden is the best overall password manager for most people's use cases. Meanwhile, LessPass is probably best suited for the most casual user who contains fewer accounts across the internet and wants something extremely simple and easy to use. Lastly, KeePassXC, will be the ultimate in privacy password manager technology and is best suited for those that are prepared to take the extra steps to ensure their key file is kept up to date as the months and years tick by.
BEST PRACTICES WITH YOUR NEW PASSWORD MANAGEROnce you have chosen a password manager from the above list, it will be important to change all of your account passwords one by one to incorporate it into your new system. This will help you get away from your commonly used log-in and password combinations and over to your new, more secure and robust set up. With your new set up, if you have a key file to back up, you must now start getting in the habit of doing so, especially after major or important changes to your password manager. Or if you wish to use BItWarden with a private cloud server, make sure that that is fully set up and running.
Generally speaking, when choosing password length from your password manager for standard and robust security, 25 random characters, letters (and symbols if you wish, but they aren't necessary), is mostly considered to be uncrackable. This is because while every password is in theory beatable, it takes dramatically more computational energy over time to figure out what your password is, and at some point, it becomes unreasonable. That said, NSA grade security often holds itself up to 50 random characters which is considered to be unbreakable even on a government wide scale.
On that same token, you'll have to use a master password for your password manager. Given that you only need to know one password, it will now be extremely important to make this a very good password. Because a password that you need to remember most likely won't (or perhaps shouldn't) be completely random so that it's easy to remember, it should, at the very least, be long. I would suggest making sure that you come up with a master password that is at least 40 characters long or 125 bits of information. To check out how many bits of entropy your master password is, you can type it into the password field of KeePassXC and it will tell you roughly how secure your master password is. While 40 characters may seem like a lot, do keep in mind that this is now the only gateway between yourself and all of your access keys to all of your accounts held on this account.
Bits of Entropy Example on KeePassXC
Finally, it is worth investing in a YubiKey or similar 2-FA device if you can get one. This can apply to BitWarden and KeePassXC. With the normal password managers, a hacker will need access to not only your password but also your key file in order to have free reign over all of your accounts. However, a sophisticated hacker that has full access to your device with a keylogger could ultimately, in theory, compromise your full set up, and this would be disastrous for you. Fortunately, this can be resolved by buying and activating a Yubikey or other such device. The Yubikey example requires that a Yubikey, with a private key that you set up for your password manager, is present to access your database. Therefore, even if a hacker were to obtain your key file and your master password, they still won't be able gain access to your account. As a precaution, however, if you lose access to your Yubikey and/or private key, you too, will be locked out. Therefore, it is important to keep your Yubikey backed up and to keep extra copies available.
IN CONCLUSIONOwning Bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies comes with a lot of responsibility if you want to minimize risk. As does maintaining a strong hack-resistant presence online. One of the best defenses you can make is by implementing a password manager. Similar to the previous CryptoSmarts articles that we have written prior, it will take some small amount of set up work to get fully acclimated to your new system, but you'll thank yourself down the road that you have done this. And the sooner you start, the better, as things will only continue to get more complex, with more risk factors at play as the internet plays an ever increasing role in all of our day to day lives.
Finally, while the article is current as of the writing of the article, it will undoubtedly lose merit over time. Be sure to check if everything in this article is up to date or that any password manager that you select from this article continues development or continues to abide by the proper best practice principles.
If you enjoyed this article, we would encourage you to check out our other previous CryptoSmarts articles discussing private e-mails, secure messenger applications and proper web browsers.
[The original article appeared on: https://block.co/blog/]submitted by BlockDotCo to u/BlockDotCo [link] [comments]
The emergence of disruptive technologies is always complemented by the creation and development of new models, mostly resulting in new economic concepts and business structures. The rise of the internet over 30 years ago, laid the foundation for the creation of new markets, for instance, that book store that sells all publications from around the world — Amazon. Or new concepts like the ‘Instant gratification’ that contributed to the introduction of business models like Netflix, finally allowing consumers to get instant access to films and series.
Blockchain is bound to create new models in all fields that regulate our lives, from a financial perspective to the regulation of infrastructures facilitating interactions and transactions in a way that would not be possible without the internet. This is one of the reasons why it is often referred to as the next generation of the internet or Web3, where WWW revolutionized information, Web2 facilitated interactions and now Web3 has the potential to innovate agreement and value exchange structures using the internet in a decentralized manner.
From a technological perspective, the similarities between the two are impressive.
We are currently believed to be in what were the early stages of the internet, with similar challenges around scalability, costs, and education, limiting the development of breakthrough applications and mass adoption. These internet challenges were resolved over time, therefore we should expect a similar progression in Blockchain.
In 1996, major internet service AOL could not manage a high volume of Internet users and went down for nineteen hours. Gradually the average internet speed in the US went from 50Kbps in 1999 to 18.7Mbps of 2017. Similarly, in 2017 the Ethereum blockchain failed to sustain the spike of on-chain transactions caused by the famous blockchain game CryptoKitties and the platform suffered the most serious network clog to date. These failures are necessary to the development of technology. Just like it was clear in 1996 that the internet had to face a scalability issue, it’s been evident for years now that blockchain also has to find ways to deal with the problem. Developers, programmers, experts, and academics are all working on the improvement of the system but there won’t be a definite solution, just like there wasn’t for the internet.
As popular Bitcoin expert and educator Andreas Antonopoulos mentioned in his book The Internet of Money, “Scale is not a goal to achieve; it is a definition of what you can do with the network today.” Scalability was built on the internet based on layers on top of the basic protocol and it looks like this will be the possible progression for the blockchain too. The Lightning Network, layer2 or off-chain protocol, is paving the way for Bitcoin fast and small payments along with a major focus on providing full privacy to transactions. Many believe in this respect we are still in 1994 Internet time, when the TCP/IP, HTML, and FTP were invented, leading to the successful business models represented by Facebook, Airbnb and Uber later. In the blockchain, breakthrough Dapps have yet to appear and will emerge in the coming years.
User Interface will help drive adoption in the same ways it helped the internet. At the time of the Arpanet, the technical foundation of the internet, the system was difficult to use for both nontechnical and technical people. The search functionality relied on an IP address and navigating the internet meant inserting a long string of numbers in order to find what you were looking for. It was easy to get confused, mistype numbers, etc. When the switch between the IP address and the URL happened, it became easier to navigate the web thanks to a more efficient and user-friendly experience overall.
Blockchain usage and benefit are still clunky. We still need a 12 or 24-word phrase to access a private cryptocurrency wallet and send a transaction to a long string of numbers (just like it happened with the early internet addresses) to validate it. All of this will disappear once user interfaces will be given the right attention and mass adoption will likely benefit from a system easier to use. It is clear that in the blockchain development more focus has been given so far to make the technology more secure, reliable, and robust at the expense of the user experience. Once the strength of the network/system is secured there will be a shift of interest in developing the interface with a resulting better user-friendly experience. Maybe it’s the right evolution and one that will bring a stronger technology structure overall.
Adoption is another important parallel we can highlight, not only with the Internet but with all the disruptive technologies previous to the World Wide Web. It took 46 years for electricity, 35 years for telephone, 14 years for TV, and 7 years for the Web to reach 25% of global market penetration. We can expect a similar growth trajectory to happen in the cryptocurrency/blockchain space, perhaps at a faster rate since the world is more connected now, thanks to the already existing internet interactions.
Stay tuned because in part two of this blog we will explore the parallels between the technologies in education, capitals, and start-ups and the decentralization of the blockchain as the main aspect that will revolutionize the Internet as well.
In the meantime, blockchain as a distributed ledger for a secure network of transactions is finding wide adoption as is the case for academic and ID credentials embraced by The University of Nicosia and Block.co. The University of Nicosia and Block.co can help provide the necessary technical expertise to follow the whole process from creation to publication on the blockchain where the document will be safely stored for life and where it can be independently verified by any third party. They were the first ones to do it globally as early as 2014.
For more info, contact [Block.co](mailto:Block.co) directly or email at [[email protected]](mailto:[email protected]).
Tel +357 70007828
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INTRODUCING QUANTOCOINBlockchain enables new ways of exchanging value securely while ensuring a reliable transaction. It enables people to meter excess capacity and facilitates non-traditional ways of generating income. Despite all the benefits, there are some challenges that the technology needs to address, I will talk about some of these challenges:
Because of all the hype surrounding Bitcoin and other digital currencies, blockchain started appearing like a pyramid scheme.
The technology is yet to mature and is susceptible to capacity problems, system failure, unanticipated bugs, and perhaps most damaging, the huge disappointment of technically unsophisticated users.
The bitcoin blockchain lacks transactional capacity. Some suggest that the way to mitigate this is by using other consensus algorithms. Another way is to use a sidechain which is a fork of a larger blockchain like bitcoin, while using the parent blockchain’s infrastructure.
Transactions on the blockchain are immutable which creates a system that is a bit sociopathic. Immutability is a double edged sword.
Much work needs to be done in basic interface and experience. A bitcoin address is an alphanumeric code. You don’t type an IP address to access a website, why would you then type an alphanumeric code to access a bitcoin wallet.
For these reasons stated up here, the QUANTOCOIN platform is birthed so as to reshape the blockchain ecosystem and the digital economy world at large where financial banking activities are concerned!
Here is the vision statement of this project; a cryptocurrency must be accepted by the masses, so it can develop its revolutionary potential. QUANTOCOIN aims to solve problems associated with the old-fashion banking system. The present financial system is supported by large-scale financial institutions. QUANTOCOIN is a platform for the future of funding that is built on top of the Waves blockchain. It accelerates the growth of unbanked people by offering tools and services that save both time and resources.
HOW QUANTOCOIN WORKSQUANTOCOIN has developed a next-generation model for the future of financial services and digital banking. This model uses Blockchain technology along with smartphones, as well as a new kind of bio-identification system which will be used to ensure safe and secure accounts for each user. This is a project to develop the future of the crypto-financial world. Its primary goal is to integrate and connect QTC into the traditional financial world and to create a single gateway through QTC platform for users, traders, investors and financial institutions with a whole range of add-on services.
QTC bank with QTC banking platform as the final stage of QTC project will bring solution by providing cryptocurrencies to mainstream everyday users.
Watch this short explainer video below that dive into the problem the team is solving with the QUANTOCOIN platform project, focusing more on how it is being done and why you should join what it is that the team members are building for the betterment of the ecosystem at large. Enjoy Watching!
The QTC mobile App will be made available for download via the iOS or Android marketplace and customers will finally be able to use cryptocurrencies to pay for any fiat-based goods or services instantly, easily and immediately on any POS terminals with NFC technology, QR code or through our qtcBeacons.
THE UNIQUE FEATURES OF QUANTOCOINBelow are some good and special features of QUANTOCOIN that distinguish this project from any other;
TOKEN INFORMATIONToken Name: Quantocoin
Token Symbol: QTCt
Blockchain Platform: Waves
Initial Price of 1 QTCt Token: from USD 1.2
Duration of DTO: 10 x 28 days periods (10 Months)
Amount token per one period: 7,000,000 QTCt
Available no. of tokens: 70,000,000 QTCt
Payment Gateway: Bitcoin (ВТC), Ethereum (ETH), fiat payments,VISA/Master
Settlement Period: 2(3) days after DTO period ends.
DTO duration: 1st July 2018 (GMT 00:00) - 30th April 2019 (GMT 29:59)
Note that; all tokens will be sold during DTO
ROADMAPBy definition, Roadmap is a plan or strategy intended to achieve a particular goal. That is to say the QUANTOCOIN Roadmap is step-by-step means by which the mission of the project is to be fully achieved.
Below is a pictorial representation of the QUANTOCOIN Roadmap:
CORE TEAM TEAM OF QUANTOCOINBehind every good project, there must be a solid team who are always brainstorming and working towards on how to achieve the aim of the project. The core team of QUANTOCOIN consists of experts who have extensive experience in IT, blockchain technology, marketing and business models. Also, the people who made up the team are veterans in the traditional finance industry, with more than 25 years of experience in online trading, FX and private banking. The idea of QTC originated from long-term planning and several years of practice.
Below are the brains that make up the QUANTOCOIN Team;
In conclusion, the idea behind QUANTOCOIN project is a very lucrative and sophisticated one. Rest assured, QUANTOCOIN aims to cater for the blockchain enthusiast who needs an easy to navigate platform that that can give reasonable transactions from banking activities. At the same time, QUANTOCOIN will provide powered-up, cutting-edge features for professional crypto guys who require the full range of earning more, decision making and fundamentals information at their fingertips.
It would be a good financial decision to take a look at the promising project and get along by registering an account on the official website and purchase the tokens while it is still very cheap now (token still at the initial offering).
Get connected anytime with the Project using the links below for more information, updates and participation:
ANN THREAD: https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=2897398
BitcoinTalk Username: cryptoblezin
BitcoinTalk Profile URL: https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?action=profile;u=2178561;sa=summary
ETH Address: 0xC89b8Dd7e3E137DB108575EeAe301E52b6C72d9F
mainDifficulty ^ x * auxDifficulty ^ ywhere we start at:
x = 1; y = 0and end at values of x and y that are related to the target relative
x = 1/2; y = 1/2so that both POWs have equal weight. If the aux POW is to become dominant,