From uni drop out to self-made crypto billionaire, Vitalik Buterin is kicking goals with Ethereum
The creator of the increasingly popular cryptocurrency, Ethereum is now officially a billionaire.
Vitalik Buterin is a 27-year-old Russian-Canadian who created the virtual currency in 2015 at the age of 19.
Prior to launching the company, Buterin cofounded (and wrote for) Bitcoin Magazine.
Ethereum skyrockets 375 percent
The creator of Ethereum now has around 335,500 ether in his wallet. This equates to more than 1.1 billion dollars, making Buterin a billionaire.
Ether prices have skyrocketed in the first part of 20-21, soaring 375 percent. The crypto now has the second-largest market value.
Crypto rises in popularity
The Ethereum cryptocurrency has a market capitalization of $376 billion, second only to bitcoin’s $1.08 trillion. But it’s quickly catching up to the crypto giant.
Ether value has surged since the beginning of the year, largely due to the rising popularity of decentralized finance (DeFi) applications.
Crypto disrupts old money
Even the traditional players are beginning to recognise the importance of embracing crypto, including luxury auction house Sotheby.
Sotheby also will be jumping on the crypto bandwagon, saying they’ll accept payments in Bitcoin and Ethereum at an upcoming Banksy auction.
The 277-year-old auction house says that it’s the first of its kind to accept cryptocurrency as payment for a physical piece of art.
“Fittingly, the pairing brings together the biggest disruptor in finance with one of the most notable disruptors in the art world – Banksy,” Sotheby said.
Meta responsible for a massive data leak
Meta responsible for a massive data leak as Irish regulator imposes fine
Irish regulator, the Data Protection Commission, has fined Meta $275 million dollars for breaching rules to protect user data.
An investigation found Meta’s Facebook was guilty of allowing sensitive user data to be accessed from the platform. After being downloaded it was later uploaded into an online hacker forum.
Users throughout 2018 and 2019 were most at risk of their private personal data being accessed and shared.
Meta admitted tools it had created to allow people to find their friends using their phone numbers was to blame. The function was removed from the platform soon after the breach was discovered in 2019.
Worldwide, the investigation also found that data was scraped from 533 million Facebook users from 106 countries. This included over 32 million records pieces of information form users in the U.S. and 11 million in the UK.
Even though the data is three or more years old, it may still be of use to cybercriminals keen to impersonate people to procure credit cards, mobile phones and make other online purchases.
This is yet another example of social media platforms being unable to adequately protect their users by devising and implementing preventative pre-emptive security measures.
While governments attempt to hold social media platforms like Meta accountable for the content they allow on their platforms and their lax data security measures, it remains to be seen whether the platforms will actually pay the fines being imposed. Moreover, will the fines result in any genuine change?
META scales back its New York office
Social media giant Meta has opted to scale back its presence in New York, as the company tries to reduce costs through a slowing online ad market.
The company revealed it will be subleasing a small portion of its facilities at a commercial tower at Hudson Yards.
A statement from the company says:
“The past few years have brought new possibilities around the role of the office, and we are prioritising making focused, balanced investments to support our most strategic long-term priorities and lead the way in creating the workplace of the future.”
In October, Meta issued a weaker-than-expected forecast for the fourth quarter and indicated revenue will drop for the period.
As well, the company revealed it was laying off over 11,000 workers, taking steps to become a leaner and more efficient company.
Crypto’s Kraken slashes 30 percent of workforce
One of the world’s largest crypto exchanges, Kraken, is laying off about 30% of its headcount, more than a thousand people.
The company’s co-founder and CEO Jesse Powell says the cuts are being made “in order to adapt to current market conditions.”
Powell wrote in a blog post that slowing growth, prompted by “macroeconomic and geopolitical factors,” had muted customer demand.
“We had to grow fast, more than tripling our workforce in order to provide those clients with the quality and service they expect of us,”
“I remain extremely bullish on crypto and Kraken.”
Crypto exchanges have been buffeted by withdrawals and regulatory scrutiny after the implosion of FTX, which is now spreading to other crypto exchanges.
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