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What is Advanced Encryption Standard (AES)? – Definition …

The Advanced Encryption Standard, or AES, is a symmetric block cipher chosen by the U.S. government to protect classified information and is implemented in software and hardware throughout the world to encrypt sensitive data.

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) started development of AES in 1997 when it announced the need for a successor algorithm for the Data Encryption Standard (DES), which was starting to become vulnerable to brute-force attacks.

This new, advanced encryption algorithm would be unclassified and had to be “capable of protecting sensitive government information well into the next century,” according to the NIST announcement of the process for development of an advanced encryption standard algorithm. It was intended to be easy to implement in hardware and software, as well as in restricted environments (for example, in a smart card) and offer good defenses against various attack techniques.

The selection process for this new symmetric key algorithm was fully open to public scrutiny and comment; this ensured a thorough, transparent analysis of the designs submitted.

NIST specified the new advanced encryption standard algorithm must be a block cipher capable of handling 128 bit blocks, using keys sized at 128, 192, and 256 bits; other criteria for being chosen as the next advanced encryption standard algorithm included:

Fifteen competing symmetric key algorithm designs were subjected to preliminary analysis by the world cryptographic community, including the National Security Agency (NSA). In August 1999, NIST selected five algorithms for more extensive analysis. These were:

Implementations of all of the above were tested extensively in ANSIC and Java languages for speed and reliability in encryption and decryption; key and algorithm setup time; and resistance to various attacks, both in hardware- and software-centric systems. Members of the global cryptographic community conducted detailed analyses (including some teams that tried to break their own submissions).

After much feedback, debate and analysis, the Rijndael cipher — a mash of the Belgian creators’ last names Daemen and Rijmen — was selected as the proposed algorithm for AES in October 2000 and published by NIST as U.S. FIPS PUB 197. The Advanced Encryption Standard became effective as a federal government standard in 2002. It is also included in the International Organization for Standardization (ISO)/International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) 18033-3 standard, which specifies block ciphers for the purpose of data confidentiality.

In June 2003, the U.S. government announced that AES could be used to protect classified information, and it soon became the default encryption algorithm for protecting classified information as well as the first publicly accessible and open cipher approved by the NSA for top-secret information. The NSA chose AES as one of the cryptographic algorithms to be used by its Information Assurance Directorate to protect national security systems.

Its successful use by the U.S. government led to widespread use in the private sector, leading AES to become the most popular algorithm used in symmetric key cryptography. The transparent selection process helped create a high level of confidence in AES among security and cryptography experts. AES is more secure than its predecessors — DES and 3DES — as the algorithm is stronger and uses longer key lengths. It also enables faster encryption than DES and 3DES, making it ideal for software applications, firmware and hardware that require either low latency or high throughput, such as firewalls and routers. It is used in many protocols such as Secure Sockets Layer (SSL)/Transport Layer Security (TLS) and can be found in most modern applications and devices that need encryption functionality.

AES comprises three block ciphers: AES-128, AES-192 and AES-256. Each cipher encrypts and decrypts data in blocks of 128 bits using cryptographic keys of 128-, 192- and 256-bits, respectively. The Rijndael cipher was designed to accept additional block sizes and key lengths, but for AES, those functions were not adopted.

Symmetric (also known as secret-key) ciphers use the same key for encrypting and decrypting, so the sender and the receiver must both know — and use — the same secret key. All key lengths are deemed sufficient to protect classified information up to the “Secret” level with “Top Secret” information requiring either 192- or 256-bit key lengths. There are 10 rounds for 128-bit keys, 12 rounds for 192-bit keys and 14 rounds for 256-bit keys — a round consists of several processing steps that include substitution, transposition and mixing of the input plaintext and transform it into the final output of ciphertext.

The AES encryption algorithm defines a number of transformations that are to be performed on data stored in an array. The first step of the cipher is to put the data into an array; after which the cipher transformations are repeated over a number of encryption rounds. The number of rounds is determined by the key length, with 10 rounds for 128-bit keys, 12 rounds for 192-bit keys and 14 rounds for 256-bit keys.

The first transformation in the AES encryption cipher is substitution of data using a substitution table; the second transformation shifts data rows, the third mixes columns. The last transformation is a simple exclusive or (XOR) operation performed on each column using a different part of the encryption key — longer keys need more rounds to complete.

Research into attacks on AES encryption has continued since the standard was finalized in 2000. Various researchers have published attacks against reduced-round versions of the Advanced Encryption Standard.

In 2005, cryptographer Daniel J. Bernstein published a paper, “Cache-timing attacks on AES,” in which he demonstrated a timing attack on AES capable of achieving a “complete AES key recovery from known-plaintext timings of a network server on another computer.”

A research paper published in 2011, titled “Biclique Cryptanalysis of the Full AES,” by researchers Andrey Bogdanov, Dmitry Khovratovich, and Christian Rechberger, demonstrated that by using a technique called a biclique attack, they could recover AES keys faster than a brute-force attack by a factor of between three and five, depending on the cipher version. However, even this attack does not threaten the practical use of AES due to its high-computational complexity.

AES has proven to be a reliable cipher, and the only practical successful attacks against AES have leveraged side-channel attacks on weaknesses found in the implementation or key management of specific AES-based encryption products.

Side-channel attacks exploit flaws in the way a cipher has been implemented rather than brute force or theoretical weaknesses in a cipher. The Browser Exploit Against SSL/TLS (BEAST) browser exploit against the TLS v1.0 protocol is a good example; TLS can use AES to encrypt data, but due to the information that TLS exposes, attackers managed to predict the initialization vector block used at the start of the encryption process.

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How to Encrypt Your Wireless Network – Lifewire

When you enable encryption, the Wi-Fi network requires a password so that not just anybody can connect. However, it’s not just the password that’s important but also the encryption type.

There are multiple options your router might support when it comes to wireless encryption. If you’re using an outdated encryption method, attackers don’t even need your password because they can just break the old encryption.

You can use your phone or tablet to see if a wireless network is using encryption. All you need to know is the name of the network.

Open your device’s settings. There’s usually a Settings app on the device that you can tap.

Locate the network in question.

Do you see a padlock icon next to the network? If so, it’s using at least the most basic form of encryption, possibly the strongest type.

However, even if basic security is enabled, it could be using an outdated form of encryption.

See if the connection shows the encryption type. You might see WEP, WPA, or WPA2.

If your wireless network is wide open with no encryption enabled, you’re practically inviting neighbors and other freeloaders to steal the bandwidth that you’re paying good money for.

There was a time when WEP was the standard for securing wireless networks, but it was eventually cracked and is now easily bypassed by even the most novice hackers, thanks to cracking tools available on the internet.

After WEP came WPA. WPA had flaws, too, and was replaced by WPA2, which isn’t perfect but is currently the best available offering for protecting home-based wireless networks.

If you set up your Wi-Fi router many years ago, then you could be using one of the old, hackable encryption schemes such as WEP, and should consider changing to WPA2.

All routers are different, but with a little poking around you should have no problem finding the encryption settings for your router.

This is done by accessing the router’s IP address as a URL, such as or You’ll then be prompted to enter the router’s username and password.

If you don’t know any of this information, check the router manufacturer’s website for help or reset your router to restore the factory default settings.

Locate the wireless security settings. Your router might call this section Wireless Security, Wireless Network, or something similar.

In this example, the settings are in Basic Setup > Wireless > Security:

Change the encryption option to WPA2-PSK.

You might see a WPA2-Enterprise setting; the enterprise version of WPA2 is intended more for corporate environments and requires a more complicated setup process.

This is what users will enter when they need to get on your Wi-Fi network, so it should not be easy to guess or easy to remember, as tempting as that may be.

If you have to, store the complex password in a password manager so that you’ll always have easy access to it.

Click Save or Apply to submit the changes. The router might have to reboot for the settings to take effect.

Reconnect all your wireless devices by selecting the correct network name and entering the new password in each device’s Wi-Fi settings page.

You should periodically check your router manufacturer’s website for firmware updates that they might release to fix security vulnerabilities associated with your router. The updated firmware might also contain new security features.

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Quantum Computing – Intel

Ongoing Development in Partnership with Industry and AcademiaThe challenges in developing functioning quantum computing systems are manifold and daunting. For example, qubits themselves are extremely fragile, with any disturbance including measurement causing them to revert from their quantum state to a classical (binary) one, resulting in data loss. Tangle Lake also must operate at profoundly cold temperatures, within a small fraction of one kelvin from absolute zero.

Moreover, there are significant issues of scale, with real-world implementations at commercial scale likely requiring at least one million qubits. Given that reality, the relatively large size of quantum processors is a significant limitation in its own right; for example, Tangle Lake is about three inches square. To address these challenges, Intel is actively developing design, modeling, packaging, and fabrication techniques to enable the creation of more complex quantum processors.

Intel began collaborating with QuTech, a quantum computing organization in the Netherlands, in 2015; that involvement includes a US$50M investment by Intel in QuTech to provide ongoing engineering resources that will help accelerate developments in the field. QuTech was created as an advanced research and education center for quantum computing by the Netherlands Organisation for Applied Research and the Delft University of Technology. Combined with Intels expertise in fabrication, control electronics, and architecture, this partnership is uniquely suited to the challenges of developing the first viable quantum computing systems.

Currently, Tangle Lake chips produced in Oregon are being shipped to QuTech in the Netherlands for analysis. QuTech has developed robust techniques for simulating quantum workloads as a means to address issues such as connecting, controlling, and measuring multiple, entangled qubits. In addition to helping drive system-level design of quantum computers, the insights uncovered through this work contribute to faster transition from design and fabrication to testing of future generations of the technology.

In addition to its collaboration with QuTech, Intel Labs is also working with other ecosystem members both on fundamental and system-level challenges on the entire quantum computing stack. Joint research being conducted with QuTech, the University of Toronto, the University of Chicago, and others builds upward from quantum devices to include mechanisms such as error correction, hardware- and software-based control mechanisms, and approaches and tools for developing quantum applications.

Beyond Superconduction: The Promise of Spin QubitsOne approach to addressing some of the challenges that are inherent to quantum processors such as Tangle Lake that are based on superconducting qubits is the investigation of spin qubits by Intel Labs and QuTech. Spin qubits function on the basis of the spin of a single electron in silicon, controlled by microwave pulses. Compared to superconducting qubits, spin qubits far more closely resemble existing semiconductor components operating in silicon, potentially taking advantage of existing fabrication techniques. In addition, this promising area of research holds the potential for advantages in the following areas:

Operating temperature:Spin qubits require extremely cold operating conditions, but to a lesser degree than superconducting qubits (approximately one degree kelvin compared to 20 millikelvins); because the difficulty of achieving lower temperatures increases exponentially as one gets closer to absolute zero, this difference potentially offers significant reductions in system complexity.

Stability and duration:Spin qubits are expected to remain coherent for far longer than superconducting qubits, making it far simpler at the processor level to implement them for algorithms.

Physical size:Far smaller than superconducting qubits, a billion spin qubits could theoretically fit in one square millimeter of space. In combination with their structural similarity to conventional transistors, this property of spin qubits could be instrumental in scaling quantum computing systems upward to the estimated millions of qubits that will eventually be needed in production systems.

To date, researchers have developed a spin qubit fabrication flow using Intels 300-millimeter process technology that is enabling the production of small spin-qubit arrays in silicon. In fact, QuTech has already begun testing small-scale spin-qubit-based quantum computer systems. As a publicly shared software foundation, QuTech has also developed the Quantum Technology Toolbox, a Python package for performing measurements and calibration of spin-qubits.

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Is This Cryptocurrency The Next Bitcoin? –

Bitcoin, which has been rallying over the last few weeks after being trapped in a more than year-long bear market, remains far below its all-time high of near $20,000 per bitcoin as traders and investors wait for major financial institutions and retailers to wade into cryptocurrencies.

The bitcoin price has recently climbed back above the psychological $5,000 per bitcoin mark, adding some 45% so far this year. Some smaller cryptocurrencies have climbed far more with a few, including binance coin, created by the Malta-based bitcoin and cryptocurrency exchange Binance, rallying back to all-time highs set in late 2017.

Now, bitcoin and cryptocurrency financial rating agency,Weiss Ratings has suggested binance coin could be the next bitcoin due to it dictating the direction of the market in recent weeks.

Many smaller cryptocurrencies, as well as bitcoin, have climbed in recent months with binance coin adding 300% so far this year.

Bitcoin has historically decided the direction of the cryptocurrency market, with bitcoin’s price moves pushing and pulling smaller cryptocurrencies.

As the cryptocurrency market has matured, however, smaller cryptocurrencies have increasingly found their own direction independent of bitcoin, with binance coin, an ethereum token used to pay fees on Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange by volume, increasingly leading the market, according to Weiss Ratings.

Binance coin is up by more than 300% this year,gaining the most of thetop 10 cryptocurrencies by market capitalization, CoinMarketCap data shows. The recent launch of Binance Chain earlier this month triggered another binance coin price rally, taking it above its previous all-time high of $24 per token.

Weiss Ratings took to Twitter to suggest binance coin could be the new bitcoin.

Last month, Weiss Ratings gave binance coin an overall rating of B-, putting it in the same class as bitcoin, Ripple’s XRP, and EOS, a rival to ethereum.

The Weiss report gave the world’s biggest cryptocurrencies overall score, most of which were not as good as their combined tech and adoption grades. EOS, bitcoin, Ripple’s XRP, and binance coin all scored a B-, while litecoin, ethereum, cardano, stellar, Neo, and tron were assigned a C+.

“Binance merits a B-, but its grade is currently influenced by a recent surge in its market price, which may not be sustainable,” the report authors warned.

Thereport, tantalizingly entitled Dark Shadows With A Bright Future, also assigned letter grades to cryptocurrencies that have the best combination of adoption and technology, putting EOS at the top of the field, above its long-time rival ethereum and in the same class as bitcoin and Ripple’s XRP.

Weiss Ratings gave binance coin the same overall grade as bitcoin, EOS, and Ripple’s XRP.

Binance coinis currently the seventh biggest cryptocurrency by market capitalization, according to CoinMarketCap data, with a total value of $3.3 billion. This is a far cry from bitcoin’s lofty valuation, which is nudging $100 billion.

Binance coin has been boosted recently by the well-publicized launch of theBinance DEX (Decentralized Exchange) after the company released its testnet for public use in February.

The Binance DEX is expected to be the world’s first widely-used decentralized exchange and is built on Binances own blockchain, Binance Chain. The decentralized exchange will allow users to retain control of their own private keys, something that many cryptocurrency users have long called for so hackers are not able to break into accounts if the centralized exchange database is compromised.

Binance coin has been climbing ahead of the launch of Binance’s decentralized exchange.

Meanwhile, Binance has courted controversy recently with the “de-listing” of bitcoin SV, a fork of bitcoin which split from bitcoin cash last November.

Last week, Binance said it will de-list bitcoin SV, striking it from the exchange as of April 22 as it no longer “meet[s] the high level of standard we expect.”

Ahead of the decision, which was then adopted by other major crypto exchanges, the widely-respected chief executive of Binance, Changpeng Zhao (often known simply as CZ), warned that his exchange could remove bitcoin SV if its biggest proponent, Craig Wright, continues to claim to be bitcoin’s creator, the mysterious Satoshi Nakamoto, and attack those who disagree with him.

Bitcoin SV developers and supporters attacked the decision, accusing Binance and CZ of “market manipulation.”

“This decision will certainly be reported to the Maltese regulators as this is surely a case of people in trusted positions abusing that trust and playing God with which token gets the most volume and market access,” Calvin Ayre, a supporter of Wright and the founder and owner of CoinGeek, a cryptocurrency miner and developer, told theFinancial Timesin response to the de-listing. “In essence, market manipulation.”

“The decision to delist bitcoin SV seems to be based on the fact that they dont like one scientist that works on the platform,” Ayre added. “Craig [Wright] doesnt own [bitcoin SV], nor does anybody, so this appears to be very unprofessional. An exchange should just want volume of trading not picking which horses it wants to win the race and, as a result, smells of fear and manipulation.”

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VMware Cloud Hosting Services Provider | TrueNorth ITG

Agility. Efficiency. Resilience. True North harnesses these core values to help give your business an edge through our cloud hosting services powered by VMware.

We provide your business with the agility that comes with our Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) offering, moving you beyond costly legacy hardware, training, updates, and maintenance.

Experience the efficiency that VMware cloud service brings to your business environment. Widely acknowledged as the leader in cutting-edge cloud computing, it provides the most secure and reliable cloud computing experience available.

Working in concert, VMware and True North give you the flexibility you need to stay competitive. Rest secure in the knowledge that our managed cloud hosting solutions will let you divert your resources toward growing your business and away from managing your IT infrastructure.

The Benefits Of Our Managed VMWARE Cloud Hosting Solutions

True Norths cloud computing partnership with VMware brings unparalleled advantages, including:

As enterprise-level VMware partners, you can rest easy knowing that your cloud hosting services are backed by the recognized leader in cloud computing, placing you in the most secure, trusted hands in the industry.

Featuring demanding SLAs and full compliance with all relevant regulations, our cloud hosting services are among the most durable in the industry. True Norths robust physical data centers feature physical security, power redundancy, and enough bandwidth capacity to ensure your operations run smoothly and efficiently.

Cloud computing offers a level of agility and flexibility that physical IT systems cant match. The result is improved business continuity as well as expedited service response times and application performance. It also gives you the ability to deploy mission-critical applications in seconds, freeing you up to achieve your business goals.

With our managed cloud hosting services, youll never need to worry about the capital infrastructure costs associated with implementing a physical IT network. Youll save significant amounts of money on hardware and software as well as service and support. And with a reduced dedicated IT department, youll be able to redeploy your resources towards other areas.

Since you only pay for the services you need, cloud computing offers an incredible amount of scalability. And because you wont need to worry about either under using existing hardware or adding new components, youll always have exactly the right amount of computational power at your fingertips when you need it.

By taking advantage of VMware cloud storage solutions, youll be able to increase collaboration between employees. Anybody within the organization will be able to access documents from anywhere, collaboratively.

By hosting your data on our cloud servers, youll never have to worry about sensitive information being accessed should a piece of hardware become lost or compromised. Since information isnt stored locally on the machine, confidential information is much easier to keep secure.

Why Choose True Norths Business Cloud Hosting Services?

When youre looking for someone to migrate your entire system of mission-critical applications and sensitive data to the cloud, you want someone you can trust. Someone backed by the industry leader.

Since 2013, True North has been recognized by VMware as a partner in offering cloud computing services. This recognition is due in part not only to our excellent technical infrastructure but our commitment to customer care.

We believe in deploying cutting edge technology. In addition to our partnership with VMware, weve partnered with industry leaders such as continuous cloud replication firm Zerto, as well as virtual machine backup technology developer Veeam.

Working in tandem with these partners, True North is able to offer the most innovative andresilient cloud security solutions possible. But theres more.

Our people make the difference, too. Our team features architects with double VCAP certification, along with our team of engineers with VMware certifications. Well work with you to assess your needs and tailor a cloud-based solution to your unique situation. Still not convinced? Ask our team about the cutting edge analytics we use to allow you the abilityto increase workflow efficiency with data-driven decisions!

Our data centers are state of the art, employing features such as:

The Flexible VMWARE Cloud Hosting Solutions You Need

Markets change quickly, and your IT infrastructure needs to have the built-in flexibility to keep your business ahead of the curve.Our private cloud hosting servicesprovide that inherent ability to quickly deploy new software and scale your processing requirements.

By harnessing our industry-leading partnership with VMware and deploying our expert team, your business can take advantage of the numerous financial, logistical and security benefits that cloud computing brings.

When you need hybrid cloud hosting solutionsthat bring peace of mind, are scalable, and increase collaboration, look no further than True North. We provide your business the agility to change with the conditions, the efficiency of operations that VMware brings, and the resilience your network deserves.

Let True North take your business to the cloud and see your profits soar.Contact ustoday!

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Hybrid Cloud Security: Simplify Complex … – Trend Micro

Hybrid Cloud Security: Simplify Complex Cloud Security | Trend Micro

Simplify security management and improve visibility across physical, virtual, cloud, and container environments

One artful solution. Multiple controls.

Prevent and detect intrusions and malicious changes with the broadest set of security controls across all types of workloads and your development pipeline.

Backed by market-leading global threat intelligence, Hybrid Cloud Security consolidates security tools to help lower costs, decrease complexity, and simplify security and compliance.

Get consistent protection and visibility across cloud, virtualized data centers, and containers with security designed to address security gaps and reporting complexity.

Hybrid Cloud Security gives you centralized visibility and control, accelerated incident response, optimized integration, and flexible licensing.

Connected security that is integrated with your DevOps processes to increase security adoption without slowing down performance across environments.

Automate manual processes with security that integrates into your CI/CD pipeline using APIs for pipeline management, deployment, monitoring, and more.

Increase security adoption

Automation center

Trend Micro’s Automation Center provides Dev and Ops teams with an easily searchable portal of best practices, script samples, SDKs, API keys, and documentation to automate manual processes and simplify implementation.

Connected Threat Defense

Connected Threat Defense enables the sharing of threat intelligence across:

Consolidate security controls

Reduce the number of security tools in your hybrid cloud with Deep Security and Deep Security Smart Check, lowering the maintenance and overhead associated with support and operational functions. All security capabilities are backed by market-leading threat intelligence, delivered by our Smart Protection Network and fueled by Trend Micro Research and the Trend Micro Zero Day Initiative.

Deep Security

Runtime protection for workloads (virtual, physical, cloud, and containers)

Deep Security Smart Check

Build pipeline image scanning

Support and empower your incident response teams

We offer advanced detection, response, and investigation capabilities (EDR), including the ability to detect indicators of attack (IOAs) and lock down suspicious applications and processes. Deep Security also integrates with leading SIEM platforms to analyze telemetry data for advanced threat hunting and IOC sweeping as well as with SOAR tools for security orchestration.

When time or resources are limited, you can get many of these benefits with our Managed Detection and Response (MDR) service.

An artful approach to security.

Weve made cybersecurity an art form, orchestrating proven foresight, XGen security strategy, and passionate people to secure your connected world. Because when you can prepare for, withstand, and rapidly recover from threats, youre free to go further and do more.

Secure your modern data center

Defend your cloud workloads

Get the full benefits of the cloud and protect your workloads while maintaining security with automated controls. Meet your shared security responsibility for deployments on AWS, Microsoft Azure, and other cloud providers.

Secure images and containers

Build secure, ship fast, and run anywhere with security as code, continuous automation, and tools designed to secure applications across your evolving hybrid cloud environment. Bake security into the CI/CD pipeline for frictionless build-time scanning and automated protection of images in the registry as well as container platforms and applications at runtime.

Trusted expertise

Gartner Market Guide for Cloud Workload Protection Platforms

IDC – Market share leader every year (since 2009)

Embracing Agility and Leveraging DevOps to Secure Hybrid Cloud Environments

Get started with Hybrid Cloud Security


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Samsung is developing its own blockchain network, report claims


Image: Raymond Wong/Mashable

Samsung is developing a blockchain network and potentially a cryptocurrency token called “Samsung Coin.”

This is according to a report by CoinDesk Korea, which cites an unnamed company official familiar with “Samsung’s internal situation.”

Details are scarce, and nothing is confirmed, but the blockchain network could either be public or hybrid a combination of public and private blockchains.

One important detail: This blockchain network will reportedly be based on Ethereum, a popular smart contract platform which makes it fairly easy to deploy your own cryptocurrency token.

Once the blockchain development is finalized, the company might move to launch its own Samsung Coin crypto-token, though “the direction has not yet been decided.”

Samsung has been working on this project for at least a year, the source said.

Samsung has dipped its toes into crypto waters by introducing a cryptocurrency wallet and decentralized app support on its Galaxy S10 phone, but this is the first time I’ve heard of the company building a blockchain-based network and a cryptocurrency/token of its own.

It’s hardly a surprise, though numerous tech companies, including Microsoft and Facebook, are working on blockchain projects. There’s no word on what Samsung plans to do with its blockchain, but the company has a mobile payment/wallet service, Samsung Pay, which might benefit from cryptocurrency integration.

We’ve asked Samsung about its blockchain-related efforts and will update the article when we hear from them.

Disclosure: The author of this text owns, or has recently owned, a number of cryptocurrencies, including BTC and ETH.

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Cryptocurrency Definition |

Cryptocurrency is a type of decentralized digital currency. Cryptocurrencies utilizeblockchainledgerstorecord and validate transactions. The first cryptocurrency wasbitcoin, which debutedin 2009, and nearly 900 cryptocurrencies have been created as of 2017, although very few have seen widespread adoption.

When cryptocurrency is used to pay for goods or services, eachtransaction is securely encrypted and recorded in a public ledger called a blockchain. The blockchain ensures acryptocurrencys integrity and eliminates the need for a central administrator, such as a treasury or acentral bank. Cryptocurrency users connect directly to each other in eer-to-peer transactions, with a degree of anonymity provided by the blockchain ledger. Acryptocurrency walletis used to store various kinds of cryptocurrency.

Bitcoin was the first cryptocurrency and it remains the most popular, with millions of users trading the 16 million bitcoins currently in electronic circulation. In its wake, many imitators appeared, andvirtually all of them replicated bitcoins approach while adding uniquetwists. Some of the first imitators, such as Namecoin and Litecoin, improved upon bitcoins security, although none of them have seenmainstream adoptionlike bitcoin, which as of 2017 is accepted at over 100,000 online retailers.

Other cryptocurrencies, like Nxt,resemble acomputing platform morethan a currency used for payment purposes. Where bitcoin simply registers ownership of coins, Nxts blockchain offers several transaction types, such asdata storage or commodities trading, and allows users tobuild apps that utilize the Nxt blockchain.

Ethereum is a cryptocurrency calledether to power a globally shared computer environment. Ethereum transactions are validated on a blockchain like other protocols, but these transactions dont simply confirm spent cryptocurrency; rather, whole computations are recorded in each block, and the price of performing the computation, whats called gas, is paid with ether. The processing power necessary for the computation is provided by users called miners who keep the ether as a reward.

Not ready to take the cryptocurrency plunge? You can always make online payments with a credit card, and Bankrate has the list of the best cash-back cards.

One way to understand the difference between bitcoin andethereum is to think of bitcoin as a currency enabled by a blockchain and ethereum as a blockchain enabled by currency. Whereas bitcoin exists to be spent, ethereums purpose is to provide a computing and business ecosystem. You cant spend ether on Amazon like you can with bitcoin, but you can use it to run an ethereum-based business or app without a middleman like J.P. Morgan or Apple.

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2019s best cryptocurrency wallets | 70+ compared |



NEW The Ledger Nano X comes with added Bluetooth functionality, more memory and a higher quality screen than its big brother, the Nano S.

Desktop Client


Store, buy and sell 300+ cryptocurrencies using Atomic Wallet’s in-built atomic swap exchange.



Buy, send and convert more than 35 currencies at the touch of a button.



Securely store some of the world’s leading cryptocurrencies on the Ledger Nano S hardware wallet.



TREZOR hardware wallet is a secure way to keep your cryptocurrency safe from hackers and malware.



Buy and hold 28+ cryptocurrencies and more than 50 different fiat currencies in this all-in-one wallet and exchange app.



A mobile hardware wallet for iPhone or Android designed to offer wireless bluetooth transactions and cold storage.



A NFC cryptocurrency wallet card with a mobile app that supports major cryptos and select ERC20 tokens.



The next generation of hardware wallet from TREZOR, the Model T includes a host of new features including a touchscreen and improved processing.

Desktop ClientWeb


Along with being a decentralised cryptocurrency exchange, offers users access to its beta release atomic swap wallet.



As well as being a cryptocurrency exchange, Coinbase offers one of the most popular web wallets accessible by mobile.



Protect your digital assets from hackers with the virus- and malware-proof KeepKey hardware wallet.

Desktop ClientMobileWeb


A relatively new wallet on the market, Jaxx offers multi-platform support for seven different cryptocurrency assets.

Desktop Client


Founded in July 2016, this free desktop wallet offers support for multiple cryptocurrencies including live chart tracking features.



A multi-coin crypto wallet designed for storing multiple cryptocurrencies on your mobile, including bitcoin and Ethereum.

Desktop ClientMobile


Electrum’s desktop wallet is designed to efficiently store your BTC on multi-platforms like Windows, Mac and Linux.

Desktop Client


Armory is the only open-source wallet with cold storage and multi-signature support features to protect your cryptocurrency.

Desktop ClientMobile


Developed for bitcoin storage only, GreenAddress offers two-factor authentication and protection of your digital assets.



Bread, previously known as Breadwallet, is a free digital wallet app focused on protecting your personal privacy during BTC storage.

Desktop ClientMobileWeb


Developed by BitPay to secure BitPays funds, Copay has quickly emerged as one of the leading wallet platforms on the market.



Home to over 15 million wallets, Blockchain delivers an online solution for safe ETH and BTC storage.



Founded in 2008, Mycelium is a well-established player in the digital currency industry, evolving to meet the growing needs of bitcoin users.



A multi-currency wallet designed with an emphasis on security, privacy and user-friendliness.



A web and mobile wallet designed to make it safe and easy to send, receive and store both Bitcoin Cash and bitcoin.

Desktop Client


Securely store Ether and other digital assets on the official Ethereum wallet, otherwise known as the Mist wallet.


ETH, ETC, EOS & ERC20 tokens

MyEtherWallet (MEW) is a free, open source tool for creating wallets that work with the Ethereum platform.

Daedalus Wallet

Desktop Client


Developed by the team behind Cardano, Daedalus is an open source desktop wallet designed specifically for ADA.

MetaMask Wallet



A popular Ethereum wallet, MetaMask provides private key protection for sending and storing Ether.




Developed by the creators of Litecoin, LoafWallet allows you to securely store Litecoin on iOS and Android.


ENJ, BTC, ETH, LTC, ERC20, ERC721, ERC1155

Developed by the Enjin Coin team, Enjin Wallet is a mobile multi-crypto wallet designed to be portable, secure and easy.

LiteVault Wallet



Store, send and receive LTC via the open source, web-based LiteVault wallet.

ethaddress Wallet



2019s best cryptocurrency wallets | 70+ compared |

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IBM expands universities in its quantum computing research …

IBM said its commercial quantum computing program, called IBM Q Network, is expanding to more universities in North America, including Notre Dame, Florida State, and Virginia Tech.

The company’s IBM Q Network is designed to develop curricula for students and forge research partnerships with academia. The additions of the aforementioned universities as well as Stony Brook University and the University of Tokyo will round out a list that already includes Duke, Harvard, and the University of Waterloo.

According to IBM, each university will have a different research focus and angle. For instance, Stony Brook will focus on preparing students for working in the quantum technologies field. Notre Dame will look a quantum applications in chemistry, physics, and engineering and Virginia Tech is looking at new algorithms for quantum chemistry.

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Big Blue earlier this year outlined its latest Q System One and showed off hardware designs for the system. Most quantum computing applications are likely to be consumed as a cloud service through multiple clouds.

The research collaboration network for IBM’s Q Network will also includethe University of Colorado Boulder, the University of Waterloo, as well as the University of Chicago and the University of Illinois via the Chicago Quantum Exchange, a research hub for quantum technology.

While these research areas are fluid and early stages, IBM is laying down the groundwork for quantum advances and ensuring there are people able to work in the field and ultimately expand it.

IBM has recently said that its possible that quantum computing will hit so-called Quantum Advantage in the 2020s. Quantum Advantage is where quantum computing leaves the lab for more practical applications.

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