DAR CEO Greg Cipolaro Speaks at Blockchain for Impact

On March 12, 2018, Digital Asset Research CEO Greg Cipolaro educated attendees of the Blockchain for Impact: Family Office and Institutional Investor Bootcamp on how the blockchain works and how it has started to transform the world we live in. Other speakers touched on the role of the United Nations in facilitating the propagation of blockchain across the world, streamlining the trucking and logistics industries, reducing government corruption by tracking funds on a blockchain, and using crypto as a payment system in the developing world.


One of the explicit tradeoffs of decentralization is that once a private key has been compromised, there is no mechanism for individual users to revert transactions and recover stolen funds. The current state of cryptocurrencies is that they defy Silicon Valley’s user-centric philosophy, where thoughtfully designed interfaces thrive despite backend constraints. Instead, the brilliant backend infrastructure put forth by Satoshi Nakamoto is still met with under-tested, ad hoc, front-end interfaces, which at times enable hackers to steal funds of inexperienced users.

Given this new paradigm in finance combined with the irrevocability and immutability of the technology, we thought it would be of value to explore offensive penetration mechanisms employed by black hat hackers in their attempt to steal funds. We are not security experts, but we have experience with cryptocurrencies and we monitor reported incidences within the community as well as darknet forums which are the source of many of these exploits. The purpose of this report is to share some of our findings, as well as challenge some of the assumptions prevalent in the cryptocurrency community when it comes to security best practices. The following is an overview of exploits under current development and recommendations on best practices to ensure the security of your assets and private keys.

To find out how to get access to our report, please fill out a request for information form here

Dude, Where's My Crypto?

Last August, we released the alpha version of our Token Profile database and we expect to release the beta version in the coming weeks. This has given us an opportunity to see how the market has changed since the initial release. At the time, the market capitalization of all cryptocurrencies as reported by Coinmarketcap.com was approximately $160B, but has since grown nearly three-fold, to more than $450B. Although prices have increased for most cryptocurrencies, there were several whose price decreased significantly. Today, Digital Asset Research has published a report that analyzes four of these tokens that decreased by more than 60% since the alpha release of the database (BitConnect, Bitdeal, Lykke, and MCAP) and attempts to identify what may have caused the price collapse of these tokens.

 Source: Digital Asset Research

Source: Digital Asset Research

To find out how to get access to our report, please fill out a request for information form here

DAR Publishes In-Depth Report On Dash

Today, Digital Asset Research published a 60 page, in-depth analysis on Dash. Our takeaways: 

- Dash is one of the oldest and largest deployed cryptocurrencies.
- Dash pioneered the masternode structure, which enables some of its key features, InstantSend and PrivateSend.
- Unfortunately, PrivateSend is not as advanced of a privacy technology as those used by currencies like Monero and Zcash.
- InstantSend relies on the centralization structure of masternodes.
- Dash’s decentralized governance budget, which comes from 10% of all block rewards, allows the protocol to explicitly build network awareness through sponsorships and advertising.
- Our top down and bottom up model suggests the token is fairly valued to slightly overvalued. Our NVT ratio shows the token is slightly undervalued.

To find out how to get access to our report, please fill out a request for information form here



Today, the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs held a hearing entitled, Virtual Currencies: The Oversight Role of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission. The witnesses were SEC Chairman, Jay Clayton, and CFTC Chairman, J. Christopher Giancarlo. We've analyzed their comments and what it means for the crypto space for our clients. To find out how to access our research, please fill out a request for information form here

Some of the memorable quotes from the hearing were: 

Chairman Clayton -  “We should all come together, the […] banking regulators […] and have a coordinated plan for dealing with the virtual currency trading market.”

Chairman Giancarlo - “We owe it to this new generation to respect their enthusiasm about virtual currencies with a thoughtful and balanced response, not a dismissive one, and yet we must crack down hard on those who try to abuse their enthusiasm with fraud and manipulation.”

Chairman Clayton -  “Initial Coin Offerings are securities offerings […] I believe that every ICO I have seen is a security.”

Senator Warner - “I think we may be on top of something that is transformational and I don’t think you can separate the underlying distributed ledger or blockchain from these of these crypto assets.”

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DAR Issues In-Depth Report Examining Metronome (MTN)

Digital Asset Research has released a comprehensive 27-page analysis of Metronome and its upcoming token sale, a project tackling blockchain interoperability. Our report includes token sale and daily auction economics, valuation measures, a technical analysis, as well as potential technical, counterparty, and regulatory risks.

We note that we were unable to review the Metronome smart contracts because they are undergoing a closed audit and the team has not released a technical white paper, only an “owner’s manual”. We find this concerning given that the project borrows elements from projects with known security vulnerabilities (e.g. Parity’s multisig wallet and Bancor’s autonomous converter contract).

To find out how to get access to our report, please fill out a request for information form here.



SEC Letter: Why A BTC Backed ETF Is Unlikely To Be Approved Anytime Soon

Following the approval of bitcoin futures trading and the naming of Dalia Blass, who worked for the law firm that advised on the failed Winklevoss bitcoin ETF, as head of the SEC’s Division of Investment Management, there was significant anticipation within the community that a bitcoin-backed ETF would be approved soon. However, on January 18, 2018, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) issued a Staff Letter titled, Engaging on Fund Innovation and Cryptocurrency-related Holdings, which threw significant cold water on that idea. DAR examines the comments from the SEC and concludes that the approval of a BTC backed ETF is unlikely to be approved anytime soon. To find out how to get access to our report, please follow the link here

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DAR Goes To Miami: Thoughts From NA Bitcoin Conference

The team from DAR recently attended The North American Bitcoin Conference and while the conference was billed as a Bitcoin conference, the focus was almost anything but Bitcoin.  

We had the chance to speak with teams from BCH, DASH, ARK, DCR, REP, tZERO, AION, RVT, and WAX as well as get an update on the regulatory environment, token sale backdrop, and the current state of crypto. To figure out how to get access to this report, please fill out a request for information here


DAR Issues In-Depth Report Examining Stratis (STRAT)

Digital Asset Research has released a comprehensive 46-page analysis of Stratis and its native STRAT token, which is tackling the nascent Blockchain-as-a-Service market. Our report includes economic activity and valuation measures, notable milestones within the development roadmap, as well as potential technical and regulatory risks. To find out how to get access to our report, please fill out a request for information form here


 Image Source: Stratisplatform.com

Image Source: Stratisplatform.com

DAR Issues Report Examining Bitcoin’s Evolving Investment Thesis As Digital Gold

Throughout Bitcoin's existence, it has represented many things, from a P:P payment system to a replacement for Visa and Mastercard. Through a combination of price appreciation, fixed supply economics, and technical development that has not kept pace with transaction demand, the current investment thesis is increasingly that of “digital gold.”

The team at DAR has examined the digital gold use case, analyzed its implications for valuation, and measured on chain economic activity to see if the data matches the theory.  Contact us here to find out how to get a copy of the report.