The Daily: Robinhood Reaches 25th State, Fake Adobe Crypto Malware
In today’s edition of The Daily we cover stories about Robinhood expanding to its 25th American state, recently discovered mining malware, Coinbase ditching its crypto index fund, and a new blockchain job for a former advisor to president Trump.
Robinhood Reaches 25th State
Robinhood Markets, the stocks, options and crypto brokerage app, has reached its 25th U.S. state. This means its free trading app is now available across half of America. The Menlo Park-headquartered company announced this week that it has expanded its services to Ohio.
With this latest expansion, Robinhood Crypto is now available in Ohio, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Arkansas, Alaska, Oklahoma, Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Iowa, Massachusetts, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, New Jersey, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, Texas, Utah, Virginia, and Wisconsin. The app features support for BTC, ETH, BCH, LTC, DOGE and ETC.
Coinbase Ditches Crypto Index Fund
Coinbase, the popular US exchange, is ditching its crypto index fund that was designed to attract big investors in the field. The Coinbase Index Fund is a private fund that seeks to track overall performance of the cryptocurrencies listed on Coinbase’s exchange, GDAX. The minimum investment amount for the fund is $250,000 and the maximum is $20 million, with an annual management fee of 2%.
The San Francisco-based company first unveiled the fund on March 6 and the service was opened to investments on June 12, with Reuben Bramanathan, Product Lead of Coinbase Asset Management, claiming: “We’ve seen overwhelming interest from investors since we announced the fund earlier this year.” Now it appears that this overwhelming interest failed to materialize into actual clients, resulting in the service’s discontinuation.
The company is said to be shifting its attention to a new retail offering, Coinbase Bundle, a recently launched basket of cryptocurrencies investors will be able to acquire for as little as $25, as we detailed briefly in yesterday’s episode of The Daily.
Crypto Mining Adobe Flash Malware
Hackers are using fake Adobe Flash updates to install malware on victims’ computers and hijack them to mine cryptocurrencies like monero (XMR), researchers from cyber security firm Palo Alto Networks Inc. have discovered. Organizations with decent web filtering and more educated users have a much lower risk of being infected by such fake updates, however, they note.
“In most cases, fake Flash updates pushing malware are not very stealthy … However, a recent type of fake Flash update has implemented additional deception. As early as August 2018, some samples impersonating Flash updates have borrowed pop-up notifications from the official Adobe installer. These fake Flash updates install unwanted programs like an XMRig cryptocurrency miner, but this malware can also update a victim’s Flash Player to the latest version,” the researchers explained. “Because of the legitimate Flash update, a potential victim may not notice anything out of the ordinary.”
Gary Cohn’s New Blockchain Job
Another top ex-Trump administration official has entered the crypto ecosystem, following Steve Bannon. Gary Cohn, former chief economic advisor to the President of the United States and former President and Chief Operating Officer of Goldman Sachs, has joined the Spring Labs Board of Advisors. Spring Labs is a startup developing a decentralized network for identity and credit.
“I have been very interested in blockchain technology for a number of years, and Spring Labs is developing a network that could have profound implications for the financial services sector, among others,” said Cohn. “I am excited to actively support the Spring Labs team in the development of this important business and network.”