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Cybersecurity Evolves to Global Security

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Carole House, the Director of Cybersecurity with the White House National Security Council, talks Cybersecurity at FinCrime Virtual Week

Recent headlines like the Colonial Pipeline Ransomware attack confirm that cybercrime is on the rise with no end in sight. The need for cryptocurrency intelligence built from immutable blockchain data has never been clearer.

Attacks on critical infrastructure and financial institutions have accelerated at an alarming rate. The Biden administration has stated that “cybersecurity resilience” is now a high priority for the US government. A recent US Security Directive “requires owners and operators of Transportation Security Administration (TSA)designated critical pipelines to adopt measures to protect against ransomware attacks and other threats.”

“There are responsibilities for the US government as well as private industries to defend their own information and networks,“ advised Carole House, Director of the National Security Council during the ACFS FinCrime Virtual Event.

Events like the Colonial Pipeline attack have made it clear that what Ms. House calls “basic cyber hygiene ” needs to be implemented. Without adequate preventive security, criminals are getting into critical infrastructure networks. Cyberattacks typically result in economic and reputational damage that  has far-reaching effects on the viability of any business.

Cybersecurity protection & preparedness tips

As a Cybersecurity expert, Ms. House advised the following preventive measures:

  • Backing up your systems (ie: disaster recovery) , including your images and data configurations
  • Regularly testing your back-up plans to make sure they are in working order for effective business continuity
  • Frequent update and patching of your IT & network systems
  • Creating an incident response planning and testing plan on a regular basis
  • Segmenting your networks

Taking any of these preventive measures, before a cyberattacks occurs, helps organizations defend against cyber hacks. It’s critical for organizations to have a plan for what Ms. House calls a “timely remediation” of a cyberattack. Focused investigation and preventative measures are necessary. Organizations need to understand what the scope and impact of a cyberattack could be and make them part of a business continuity plan.

Financial crime compliance programs and monitoring tools

Cybercrime is basically the act of criminals trying to monetize what has been protected or private information. These criminal acts range from the theft of intellectual property to capturing specific credentials that can be used in “credential stuffing attacks.” Another tactic is capturing sensitive PPI that can be used to establish digital identity that aids in for account takeover theft or other types of fraud. Therefore, it is  critical to have some type of financial transaction monitoring in place. This tracing capability can be a game changer in the event of cybercrime.

Security recommendations for financial compliance professionals

“At some point, it’s likely that there is a transaction going through your ecosystem that has something to do with financial crime. There is a really unique picture that you can offer related to these criminal networks,” Ms. House told event attendees. “The unique aspect of criminal networks and cybercrime come when you’re looking at attribution via money laundering channels and cybercrime channels. You may notice very different skills sets used in different networks.”

Noticing these trends and monitoring suspicious activity is a necessity in the investigation of criminal attacks. If you see IOCs (indicator of compromise) that are in any way targeting financial institutions networks especially one trying to “effect, conduct or facilitate a transaction,” that transaction may merit investigation and even filing a suspicious activity report.

One of the unique roles that US financial institutions play is their ability to leverage the capabilities that they have for reporting cyber incidents.

“There is an opportunity for compliance professionals to work with the security centers and to find those indicators of compromise, malicious URLs, e-mail addresses, PII addresses and time stamps associated with these malicious logins. When you’ve identified that there’s an account takeover that has occurred or if you’ve found out that a financial institutions customer was defrauded through business email compromise fraud, “ noted Ms. House.

Any information of this nature that compliance professionals can provide about these malicious communications is critical to supporting FinCEN and law enforcement. Ms. House urged that any “relevant information that financial institution may have from their security information centers should be shared to help all institutions be prepared to defend against a cyberattack.”

Cryptocurrency and financial crime

Just as any financial asset has the possibility to be exploited, so do cryptocurrencies and digital assets. There are always vulnerabilities that criminals can find. Criminals seem to favor cryptocurrencies as the method of payment in the commission of a crime or in the request for ransomware. When dealing with cybercrime it is very likely that cryptocurrency has been used for money laundering. What was once viewed as only being a wire transfer problem, has now extended to automated clearing house( ACH) transfers and even the use of gift cards. Cryptocurrency has become more attractive to criminals because of the efficiency of crypto cross-border transfers and the speed of crypto transactions. These features are attractive to money launders that may be trying to fund terrorist or illegal activities. However, cryptocurrency provides “additional traceability and partnership to be able to identity illicit financial trails and to hold actors accountable,” said Ms. House. “There are positives and negatives with these assets.”

The Financial Asset Task Force (FATF) Travel Rule recommendation  and Virtual Asset Providers

The standards currently proposed under FATF’s Travel Rule Recommendation 16 are “critical to combat money laundering trails” says Ms. House. Criminals have been known to jump jurisdictions with no concern for country borders. Because there are pros and cons of transferring cryptocurrencies, Ms. House believe that there is a need for the appropriate controls not only at the governmental level, but also at a technology level. One of the ways technology can help is by offering a consistent global response to cybercrime and money laundering.

Building a global coalition on cybercrime

In her closing remarks at ACFCS FinCrime Virtual Conference, Ms. House reinforced how essential it is to work with partners to share best practices, as well as data, in order to stop cybercrime and ransomware. Global organizations need to cooperate with each other on sanctions and prosecutions to combat illicit activities. Towards this end, the US National Security Council is working to build a global coalition to combat and prevent cybercrime. One of the goals is to hold countries like Russia and China accountable for the roll in cyberattacks and the Microsoft Exchange Server violations.

There have been many published advisories about the benefits of spotting activities. Ms. House recommends that financial institutions and governments stay up to date on the most recent recommendations and regulations, as well as comply with existing regulations like the Safe Harbor Act (314b) & the US Cyber Information Sharing Act.

“One of the key initiations of the US White House National Security Council is to lead these global coalitions to stop financial crime. This includes working with the UN, our G7 partners and our “Five Eye” partners, committing to working together collaboratively to combat ransomware and other cybercrime activities,” explained Ms. House. “We even worked with NATO and supported a new comprehensive cyber defense policy reaffirming that the US’s ironclad commitment still exists to collective defense under Article 5, still applying in cyberspace just as it does in non-cyber domains.“

To hear more from Carole House, Director of Cybersecurity for White House National Security Council, listen to her recorded session at FinCrime Virtual Week.

About Carole House

Carole House is an experienced cybersecurity and risk management professional with a demonstrated background in U.S. military intelligence and the Federal executive and legislative branches of government who is committed to protecting people. Ms. House is currently  the Director of Cybersecurity with the White House National Security Council. She is skilled in cybersecurity and emerging technology policy, security operations and risk management, unconventional warfare, and strategic and operational planning. She has a strong research backgrounds and holds a Master of Arts (M.A.) focused in Security Studies from Georgetown University.

PlatoAi. Web3 Reimagined. Data Intelligence Amplified.
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Source: https://ciphertrace.com/cybersecurity-evolves-to-global-security/

Blockchain

What does swapping crypto mean?

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Has the number of cryptocurrencies ever piqued your interest? Are we talking about a couple of hundred here? Maybe a zillion people? According to CoinMarketCap, that number is now well over 7,000. With so many options, you may want to test a new cryptocurrency at some time. However, how do you go about doing it?

Good news, then! Making a switch will allow you to test out a different cryptocurrency with ease. Swapping is the process of swapping one coin for another. In other words, how does it all work?

Let’s assume you have some

Ethereum, but you’d like to have Bitcoin. Certain services are available to assist you with this. Swap service providers allow you to trade your Ethereum for Bitcoin, with a value close to the actual exchange rate. To put it simply:

Why would I want to swap?

Now you know what it means to exchange cryptocurrency. On the other hand, why on earth would you want to? Anyone’s motives for wanting to swap their crypto assets for anything else are wide open. So, without further ado, here we go.

Profiting

Making money, that’s right. It’s a hit with everyone. Trading cryptocurrencies have the potential to bring you a sizable return because of how rapidly their prices can shift. You might make a lot of money by trading your crypto at the appropriate time if you are timing the market perfectly and are a little bit lucky.

Increasing your investment options by utilizing diversification

Those sudden price adjustments, on the other hand, are not to everyone’s taste. In general, diversification is seen as a valuable tool for reducing the impact of risk. Having a diverse portfolio of cryptocurrencies may help mitigate the effects of price fluctuations.

A source of ongoing revenue

Wouldn’t it be great if you could receive money for doing nothing? Staking is a method of earning additional crypto without having to do any work on your part. You might try this out by exchanging some of your bitcoin for fiat currency.

But be on the lookout!

Trading cryptocurrency is inherently hazardous, even if you don’t consider security issues. Remember how we said that by timing the market right, you might make a significant profit? If you’re not careful, you might suffer losses of all sizes. Don’t invest or trade money you can’t afford to lose, and do your homework before you get involved.

Additionally, there is generally a charge associated with trading bitcoins. You should expect a somewhat lesser return on your investment.

What is 123swap?

123swap offers an ecosystem of products and services that enables consumers to swap, keep, send, receive, earn, and invest tokens across various chains in a single place of business. To remove difficulties such as complex interface, hidden fees, and a time-consuming registration procedure, the platform has designed its conversion method to simplify the process for the end-user.

Why 123swap?

Users can pick from among more than 500 cross-chain liquidity pools (Ethereum, Binance, Polkadot, and many more). In addition to supporting the most popular protocols, the platform also offers the lowest costs and the highest annual percentage yield (APY) (Annual Percentage Yield).

123swap will differentiate apart from other DeFi platforms thanks to the following features:

In the Smart Economy, 123swap is a prominent crypto swap protocol that enables users to – Swap favoured assets in several chains; hold them; send them; receive them; earn from them; and invest in them. In this approach, crypto assets may be exchanged between peers without the need to put their faith in a third-party custodian or counterparty. The platform offers non-custodial services and aims to provide optimum safety, ease, and comfort for its users. Customers may browse all of the swaps offers gathered from the most important crypto exchanges in one location.

The platform’s goal is to develop a stronghold community. Members of the community will be able to make essential choices on things like team tokens vs. advisory tokens, lock length, and so on through a fair voting mechanism.

Problems solved by 123swap

Exchanges performed by hand are old-fashioned and time-consuming. By utilizing smart contracts, the platform will streamline and automate the swapping process. Smart and autonomous financial management will be available in one location thanks to the cross-chain smart contracts. The platform would promote decentralized financial management via smart contracts. As a result of its technological innovations, 123swap is poised to surpass the competition, improve speed, and establish itself as the world’s leading exchange.

Final Thoughts

Swapping is the process of swapping one coin for another. Certain services are available to assist you with this. You might make a lot of money by trading your crypto at the appropriate time. If you’re not careful, however, you might suffer losses of all sizes. 123swap is poised to surpass the competition, improve speed, and establish itself as the world’s leading exchange.

The platform would promote decentralized financial management via smart contracts. Users can choose from among more than 500 cross-chain liquidity pools (Ethereum, Binance, Polkadot, and many more).

Source: Plato Data Intelligence

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Blockchain

How to Find Crypto Exchanges for Safe Transactions

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As a result of the Covid-19 epidemic, global markets have begun to appreciate the potential of cryptocurrency. Yet, it was previously seen as too volatile and fringe to embrace any sizeable corporate body or company. 

You can buy, sell, and trade cryptocurrencies on top crypto exchanges. You can’t get or sell digital assets unless you have access to a cryptocurrency exchange online. 

Where to find the best crypto exchanges with a fair conversion rate? Look at the list of crypto exchanges at https://coincub.com/. You can see a calculator where you can find out which converter you need to choose depending on how much you need to swap for 1 coin and your location. This way, you can see a chart with many converters that may suit your needs for safe transferring.

Choosing the proper crypto exchange for both novice and experienced advanced crypto traders has been difficult. When you find that one, you can be sure you are safe! 

What to Look for to Find the Best Cryptocurrency Exchanges

Most exchanges primarily allow you to convert Bitcoin, into other digital currencies, such as Ethereum or Litecoin. Your scope may vary when selecting an exchange to convert money for crypto. You may prefer an exchange that supports particular cryptocurrencies, trading pairings, and extra features like margin trading or over-the-counter (OTC) transactions.

How to find an exchange that satisfies your fundamental needs? Consider the following aspects to take into account:

  • Security. By far, one of the essential elements of a transaction is safety. If an exchange is not secure, your cash might be stolen, rendering any other benefits it provides useless. No one likes to lose money; therefore, consider the following factors in this regard;
  • Technology. The web URL of the top crypto exchanges should begin with HTTPS. Two-factor authentication should be used for login security. Customer deposits should be kept offline in what is known as “cold storage.” Auditing tools that monitor exchange activities 24/7 and send SMS with email notifications provide exchange clients additional security guarantees. For optimum protection, allow your IP address or withdrawal wallet addresses;
  • Legal considerations. Choose an exchange from the same nation since this can help you comply with regulatory changes. It should be noted that certain exchanges only support a restricted number of countries;
  • Transparency. The most trusted crypto exchanges reveal addresses, teams, cold storage addresses or assist in the verification of their reserves in other ways, such as audit information;
  • Liquidity. The more liquid a specific exchange is, the larger the trade volume. Liquidity allows transactions to be completed more quickly, simply, and without coping with price fluctuation. Check to determine whether an exchange offers “locked-in” pricing, which assures you the price at the time of your transfer sessions even if it does not settle right away;
  • Costs. Examine all of the fees that an exchange charges. They’re typically less than 1% of each transaction and may drop as your trading volume grows. Examine the withdrawal costs. Some exchanges are known to charge exorbitant withdrawal fees for specific cryptocurrencies. Check the deposit fees as well.

Ultimately, keep in mind that crypto and its infrastructure are still in the early stages of development so that things might change fast. Numerous decentralized exchanges are already in the works, and many experts believe they’ll permanently alter existing exchanges.

Furthermore, laws may be imposed, and new technology or issues may emerge. So keep up with the news and stay informed. The best cryptocurrency exchange is unique to each individual, so conduct your research and be cautious while doing so.

Source: Plato Data Intelligence

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Blockchain

Pound pauses after strong week

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The British pound is slightly lower in the Monday session. GBP/USD is currently trading at 1.3724, down 0.15% on the day. The currency rose 0.98% last week, its best weekly performance since late August.

BoE’s Bailey hints at rate hike

The BoE continues to signal that it is preparing to raise interest rates shortly. The Bank has been sending a stream of hawkish messages to the markets, with Governor Bailey and other policymakers hinting that a rate hike is on its way shortly. On Sunday, Bailey said that inflation would rise higher and last longer due to the surge in energy prices, and that the central bank “will have to act” via monetary policy in order to deal with the risk of high inflation. The BoE has projected that inflation will climb over 4%, which is more than twice its target. In order to curb inflation, the BoE may respond with a series of rate hikes, which could kick off as early as November.

This would be a highly significant move, as the BoE would become the first major central bank to raise rates since the start of the Covid pandemic in early 2020. With the Bank holding its next policy meeting on November 4th, any additional hawkish comments from BoE policymakers will raise expectations that the November meeting will be a live one.

Rate fever is also rising across the pond. Last week, the FOMC minutes indicated that the Fed expects to taper its bond purchases in November or December. The minutes noted that the Fed would reduce the USD 120 billion/ month gradually, until the programme was completely terminated by July 2022. The markets have brought forward the pricing of a rate hike from December 2022 to September 2022, projecting a rate hike shortly after the tapering is complete.

.

GBP/USD Technical Analysis

  • 1.3822 is the next resistance line, followed by the round number of 1.3900
  • There is support at 1.3618. Below, there is support at 1.3492

This article is for general information purposes only. It is not investment advice or a solution to buy or sell securities. Opinions are the authors; not necessarily that of OANDA Corporation or any of its affiliates, subsidiaries, officers or directors. Leveraged trading is high risk and not suitable for all. You could lose all of your deposited funds.

Kenny Fisher

A highly experienced financial market analyst with a focus on fundamental analysis, Kenneth Fisher’s daily commentary covers a broad range of markets including forex, equities and commodities. His work has been published in several major online financial publications including Investing.com, Seeking Alpha and FXStreet. Based in Israel, Kenny has been a MarketPulse contributor since 2012.

Kenny Fisher

Kenny Fisher

Latest posts by Kenny Fisher (see all)

Source: https://www.marketpulse.com/20211018/pound-pauses-after-strong-week/

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Blockchain

Oil rises on coal, gold under pressure

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Coal lifts oil in Asia

Hong Kong coal futures have leapt 9.0% higher this morning, meaning that the China energy crunch has made its way back to the front of investors minds. That has lifted oil prices in Asia as well, with Brent crude surging 0.80% higher, and WTI leaping by 1.0%.

On Friday, oil prices continued to grind higher, with no sign of any inclination to open the pumps by OPEC+ or announcements by the US government on SPR releases. Brent crude finished 0.90% higher at USD 84.90, and WTI finished 1.25% higher at USD 82.50 a barrel. In Asia, Brent crude has risen to USD 85.65, and WTI has risen to USD 83.40 a barrel as coal futures rocket into space.

With no signs of the China energy crunch alleviating soon, and with the rest of northern Asia and Europe competing for scarce energy supplies, particularly gas, the price environment for oil remains constructive. Even a US or China SPR release is only likely to provide temporary relief. A rapidly reopening aviation sector, with a slew of reopening announcements from ASEAN last week, will be another price pressure point.

Brent crude should now target the October 2019 high at USD 86.80 and onto USD 90.00 barrel, with support at USD 84.25 and USD 82.00 a barrel. WTI now has meaningful resistance until the USD 89.00 regions although I expect some sellers to appear above USD 86.00 a barrel initially. Only a fall through USD 82.00 a barrel changes the bullish outlook.

If Brent crude moves to USD 90.00 a barrel, I expect the pressure on OPEC+ to step up quite a few notches from the US White House. The huge weight of speculative long positioning in oil futures means a sudden USD 5-8 a barrel drop could still occur on a headline shock. However, with the underlying fundamentals for oil so strong, any large dip will reverse just as quickly.

Nervous specs cut long gold positions

Although the US dollar finished roughly neutral on Friday, higher yields across the US curve were enough to spook speculative longs in gold. That saw the predicted rush for the exit door, and gold fell rapidly by 1.60% to close at USD 1767.50 an ounce.  In early Asia, gold has recouped some losses, rising 0.25% to USD 1771.50 an ounce.

The price action on Friday speaks volumes about the gold market now. US dollar weakness earlier last week soured gold buying and drew in fast-money speculative longs. The equally rapid unwinding of most of those gains on Friday reinforces that much of gold’s rally was built on speculative hot air and that those longs have little to no appetite to wear any pain on those long positions. In the bigger picture, the lack of staying power from gold longs suggests that it will struggle to maintain any upward momentum, even if gold reaches USD 1800.00 an ounce. Up via the stairs, down via the sixth-floor window.

Firmer US yields, should they endure this week, will be a headwind for gold rallies, especially if it leads to US dollar strength. Gold has nearby support at USD 1765.00 followed by USD 1745.00 an ounce with failure reopening a test of USD 1720.00. Gold failed for the third day in a row at the 100 and 200-day moving averages (DMAs), today at USD 1795.40 and USD 1796.60 an ounce, formidable resistance.

In the bigger picture, only a rise through USD 1835.00 an ounce would trigger a multi-month inverse head-and-shoulders technical pattern and swing gold’s outlook back to positive. The risks remain firmly to the downside.

This article is for general information purposes only. It is not investment advice or a solution to buy or sell securities. Opinions are the authors; not necessarily that of OANDA Corporation or any of its affiliates, subsidiaries, officers or directors. Leveraged trading is high risk and not suitable for all. You could lose all of your deposited funds.

Jeffrey Halley

With more than 30 years of FX experience – from spot/margin trading and NDFs through to currency options and futures – Jeffrey Halley is OANDA’s senior market analyst for Asia Pacific, responsible for providing timely and relevant macro analysis covering a wide range of asset classes. He has previously worked with leading institutions such as Saxo Capital Markets, DynexCorp Currency Portfolio Management, IG, IFX, Fimat Internationale Banque, HSBC and Barclays. A highly sought-after analyst, Jeffrey has appeared on a wide range of global news channels including Bloomberg, BBC, Reuters, CNBC, MSN, Sky TV, Channel News Asia as well as in leading print publications including the New York Times and The Wall Street Journal, among others. He was born in New Zealand and holds an MBA from the Cass Business School.

Jeffrey Halley

Jeffrey Halley

Latest posts by Jeffrey Halley (see all)

Source: https://www.marketpulse.com/20211018/oil-rises-coal-gold-pressure/

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