Weekly Flip Thru: White House Asks Crypto Miners to ‘Go Green’ and Feds Recover $30 Million from Axie Infinity Hack

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Well folks, we made it through another week. Congrats. With those kudos out of the way, let’s get right to the crypto news. That’s why you’re really here, right?

At a glance, here are the top crypto news stories headlines we’re scoping out for the week of September 12, 2022:

The Merge is upon us (CoinFlip) This is the biggest update the crypto community has witnessed in over a decade. The consensus mechanism underpinning the ethereum network’s blockchain will switch from proof of work (think: many machines racing to complete complex equations to approve transactions) to proof of stake (where the network designates validators to sign off on transactions). This shift to proof of stake is expected to make ether (ETH) 99% more energy efficient.

Scammers will be eyeing the Merge as well, so stay vigilant! You may hear pitches for investors to transfer their tokens into things like “New ETH” or “ETH 2.0” – be wary of solicitations to “upgrade” any ETH you may hold into a new token. All tokens created before or after the merge will remain ETH.

The Biden Administration is asking crypto to clean up its act (Decrypt) Specifically, the White House had a bone to pick with energy consumption tied to crypto mining. But see above about the impending Merge, which takes the second-largest cryptocurrency to a greener state by switching from energy-hungry proof of work to proof of stake.

Proof of work may still have its proponents among the crypto community, and as long as the incentives are there for miners to produce cryptocurrency using it, then it seems likely that these energy concerns will linger a bit longer. But are there greener alternatives for the source of the energy that’s needed to mine crypto? Yes. And some companies that specialize in crypto mining technology are already working to create solutions that harness solar power for crypto mining rigs.

The FBI recovered $30 million in crypto stolen from the game development studio behind Axie Infinity (CNN) Federal authorities say they’ve been able to get back some of the crypto that was stolen by North Korean hackers. In March of 2022, millions of dollars’ worth of crypto were stolen from Sky Mavis, makers of the popular video game Axie Infinity that allows players to earn crypto as a reward for achievements in the game. Video games are increasingly expanding their offerings of crypto rewards for players, and some video games incorporate NFTs as rewards as well. The rising prominence of crypto rewards in video games also makes them a target for hackers.

Even though crypto scams were down overall through the first half of the year, Chainalysis reports that the total sum of crypto stolen so far in 2022 was higher than the previous year. And there’s still nearly $600 million in stolen funds that need to be recovered from the Sky Mavis hack alone.

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Reminder: all crypto transactions are final and irreversible. Be careful to protect your personal information and always double check wallet addresses before sending funds.