A $9B Crypto Mystery Solved? This Week's Top Cryptocurrency News

 Nonfungible Tidbits: All the bitcoin, cryptocurrency and NFT news for the week ending Feb. 25.

Welcome to Nonfungible Tidbits, a weekly roundup of the biggest news in crypto, NFTs and their related realms.

Our lead story this week is a new book that claims to solve one of the biggest mysteries in the crypto industry: Who hacked The DAO in 2016? 

We'll also go over crypto scammers on dating apps and big brands buying into "the Metaverse," an evolving term for a… digital world of some kind? It still isn't entirely clear. Lastly, we'll cover the Sotheby NFT auction that was called off at the last minute,

Stay tuned for more next week.

A $9B crypto mystery solved? 

A decentralized autonomous organization simply called The DAO was launched on the Ethereum blockchain in 2016. These organizations are online groups that issue digital tokens for members to buy. The tokens impart voting rights to guide the organization's direction. 

The DAO raised $150 million in ether in this way, but due to the underlying code's vulnerabilities, The DAO was hacked and 3.6 million ether (currently worth over $9 billion) was stolen. 

The hack led to a "hard fork" in the ethereum blockchain, which created a new blockchain, essentially erasing the hack. But not all of The DAO's members agreed on this decision. That's why two ethereum blockchains exist today: ethereum and ethereum classic. 

Ethereum is now one of the most prominent blockchains, and the hacking incident has remained unsolved for years. Earlier this week, however, journalist Laura Shin, in preparation for the release of her book The Cryptopians, said she uncovered the identity of The DAO hacker.

 Shin traced the hacker -- an Australian programmer who had been active in the early crypto industry -- using tracking tools from Chainalysis, a blockchain tracing firm.

When Shin contacted the programmer, he denied her claim, stating "Your statement and conclusion is factually inaccurate." The accused programmer said he'd follow up with proof, then proceeded to cut off all ties with Shin.

So, is the jury still out on the hacker's identity? Analysis from The Block dives into whether or not Chainalysis could really trace all crypto transactions.

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