Why Competition Between NFT Marketplaces Is Good News

Why Competition Between NFT Marketplaces Is Good News

While crypto is in a bear market the one sector that has weathered the storm relatively well is NFTs. A new report estimates the global NFT market will be worth $231 billion by 2030, growing at a compounded growth rate of 33.7% over the next eight years. However, this quarter the NFT market has been on somewhat of a roller-coaster ride, though in terms of trading volume and sales compared to Q2 of 2021 they are up by 533% and 59% respectively. In addition, metaverse NFTs also had a good quarter, with the trading volume for ETH-based collections has increased by 101%, while Polygon collections have unfortunately declined by 26%. Overall, it has been a growth of 96%, according to DappRadar.

If that positive trend whets your appetite to get involved in NFTs trading, then you’re not alone. The recent crypto bull market was like an electromagnet for investors who flocked to NFTs. Either to try to get in early by getting whitelisted on a project and then sell once the particular project went live, or purchasing them from another user before selling them on one of the growing number of marketplaces. As reported in late 2021 by leading crypto analytics firm Chainalysis, “NFTs are far from a surefire investment” however: “Transaction data from the OpenSea marketplace shows that just 28.5% of NFTs purchased during minting and then sold on the platform result in a profit. Buying NFTs on the secondary market from other users and flipping them, however, leads to profit 65.1%of the time.” In plain English what this means is that your average NFT buyer is likely to be out of luck when it comes to turning a profit on a newly minted or a secondary market NFT trade.

If those headline figures haven’t put you off, what can help you can see the wood for the trees when it comes to trading NFTs? A little context might help for starters; namely the commercial pressure from the bear market and the competition between NFT marketplaces mean this could be a good time to up your NFT trading game.

NFTs are traded in NFT marketplaces, which are well-organized platforms for selling digital collectibles. As a rule of thumb NFTs are sold at a fixed price, while others are auctioned off. Opensea is by far the largest NFT marketplace, with a 90% market share by dollar trading volume across multiple marketplaces in 2021. But what’s changed in the last few months is that OpenSea’s market share has started to diminish. In response OpenSea has improved its service with the launch of Seaport, an open-source trading protocol which enables trading multiple NFTs at a time. And with OpenSea’s purchase of NFT market aggregator Gem, its likely they will go up against Uniswap, which recently acquired NFT aggregator platform Genie. Finally, despite the failure of Coinbase’s NFT offering, eBay has both purchased marketplace KnownOrigin and in partnership with OneOf, recently announced its first foray into the NFT space with the launch of a series of sports themed, featuring iconic athletes.

What hasn’t changed is the fact that most NFTs are released in collections. A collection is a group of NFTs that are all different but share some characteristics. Bored Ape, the most popular NFT collection, has a total sales value of approximately $2.5 billion. While the top ten NFT collections had over $15 billion in trading value in 2021, accounting for roughly 60% of the total NFT market. The fact that a few collections dominated a large portion of the market is most likely due to NFT investors’ preference to trade within collections. They do this because it is easier to value an NFT in a collection when there are “similar” NFTs to compare it to. Experienced investors know where the money is, therefore, they trade NFTs within those collections.

These NFT traders speculate and identify a specific collection with liquidity, trade, and keep flipping until they make a profit. The truth is that most speculative traders do not profit from trading NFTs. Information is key, and traders who have information on the collection with liquidity are more likely to make a profit. Instant tradability of non-fungible tokens will lead to higher liquidity. NFT marketplaces can cater to a variety of audiences—from hardcore traders to more novice players—allowing for greater exposure of the assets to a wider pool of buyers. In the same way that the ICO boom of 2017 gave birth to a new asset class driven by instantly liquid tokens, NFTs expand the market for unique digital assets.

Another factor we must consider is fraud in the NFT sector. We’ve seen a lot of bad actors sell and trade NFTs they don’t own or have access to. I believe that it is critical for every NFT trader to conduct their own research to determine the best collection to trade. In simple terms the NFT sector is still growing, and there are still certain gaps to fill.

Market liquidity is still concentrated in a few NFT collections, and a trader must be able to identify those collections where the demand is to make a profit. I am also about to publish an in-depth guide to NFTs in a new book, said I believe the NFT market was only going to get stronger in 2022. “The growth of NFTs on rival platforms to Ethereum such as Solana , and the competition with OpenSea from players ranging from DEX leader Uniswap to e-commerce king eBay, shows how dynamic this sector is. Despite the collapse of the wider crypto market with the Luna Terra collapse, the demand for NFTs shows no stopping. I was struck also by how GameStop’s new marketplace launched just a couple of days ago is already doing well, with ETH in trading volume too.”

 

Original Source: https://www.benzinga.com/22/08/28375889/why-competition-between-nft-marketplaces-is-good-news

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Decrypting the Solana Wallet attack and how investors can safeguard their crypto holdings

Decrypting the Solana Wallet attack and how investors can safeguard their crypto holdings

Solana’s hack is one of the major events that happened this week. These are my additional comments.

According to a tweet on Solana account. “There is no evidence the Solana protocol or its cryptography was compromised.” I think we should not take this lightly. I would expect a full postmortem later this week to address to the attack.

The addresses that were affected by the attack were at one point created, imported or used in the Slope mobile applications. Private key information was also accidentally sent to an application monitoring service. I think a decentralized network should stay independent and operate purely by codes. This can help to reduce similar problems.

Whether it is a bridge exploit or supply chain attack, the root problem is still uncertain. I would suggest users to create a new wallet, move their funds over to the new wallet and delete the old ones. Users for the time being can also consider moving their funds to the more reputable centralized exchanges or hardware wallets too. Keeping assets secure amid the uncertain situation is the best way for now.

I think the rest on the network should check on their codes and increase their security to prevent any other possible exploits that could happen. Never be too sure and let your guard down.

 

 

Decrypting the Solana Wallet attack and how investors can safeguard their crypto holdings

With reports indicating around 8,000 ‘hot’ wallets were compromised in the attack, experts advise investors to switch to hardware wallets for better security.

Close on the heels of cross-chain messaging platform Nomad being the target of a $200-million crypto heist, investors using ‘hot’ or internet-connected crypto wallets on the popular blockchain Solana were under attack from an unknown bad actor.

 

Over $8 million stolen from 8,000 investors

With crypto holdings worth over $8 million stolen from approximately 8,000 investors, this latest attack has raised many questions about the security offered by both the Solana network and ‘hot’ wallets that are quite popular with the average crypto investor.
While Solana’s official Twitter account was quick to clarify that the attack was not the result of any compromise in the network’s software, it added that its team of engineers is fervently working with security researchers and ecosystem teams to identify the root cause of this wallet hack.

Create new wallets, delete old ones

“While it is my opinion that a decentralised network should stay independent and operate purely by codes, I think the team at Solana should re-check all their partner systems and increase their security to prevent any other possible exploits. Investors ought to remain vigilant and take necessary precautions at their end,” he said.

“I would suggest users create a new wallet, move their funds over to the new wallet and delete the old ones. They can also consider moving their funds to the more reputable centralised exchanges or hardware wallets too. Keeping assets secure amid the uncertain situation is the best way for now,” he added.

Preliminary investigations have revealed that this exploit was limited to just the Slope wallet on the Solana ecosystem, while hardware wallets used by Slope remained unscathed.

According to Solana, affected wallet addresses were at one point created, imported or used in Slope mobile wallet applications, and their private key information was transmitted to an application monitoring service.

 

Do not store private keys on computers

Commenting on the Solana network and the underlying sentiment, Lin, a senior analyst at Block Review, said according to his statistics, there were 10.5 percent negative sentiments for Solana in the last seven days, while Ethereum had around 6.2 percent and anything below 15 percent is still okay in his opinion.

“Coming back to the private keys that were compromised, I think any of this information should never be on any computer at any given time. This part should be taken care of and well audited by the wallet providers. Users, on the other hand, have to take extra care of their private keys and seed phrases,” Lin said.

Solana has already urged investors affected by the attack to abandon the affected wallets as they could still be compromised even after revoking wallet approvals.

While the exact modus operandi employed is still unknown, crypto industry leaders have highlighted that the suspect transactions were properly signed, further indicating that it could be a supply chain attack with a specific focus on Slope ‘hot’ wallet users.

 

Investors should opt for cold or hardware wallets   

Elaborating on how hackers can still steal from a compromised wallet, Raj Kapoor, founder of India Blockchain Alliance, said since private keys are stored in application and device wallets, hackers can access them and steal cryptocurrencies and that sums up the Solana hack.

“If your wallet has been compromised, it’s paramount that you transfer any existing funds from your compromised wallet to another wallet. Hackers will wipe your account of funds immediately, but if you’re lucky and they have not done this yet, it’s time for investors to take immediate action,” he added.

Since most hacks happen to hit “hot” wallets, investors should opt for cold or hardware wallets instead. While investors may need some of it online for transactions, they should keep what they need in the short term and store most of it offline.

A cold crypto wallet, which is similar in size to a USB device, holds a private key that can be used to access your funds. Investors can set their own private keys as well.

 

Use multi-factor authentication

Investors should also use multi-factor authentication (MFA) as this creates a layered defence on their account with independent credentials based on a password, security token, and/or biometrics.

Phishing is another danger and to prevent it, investors should never log in to their cryptocurrency exchange unless they are sure they are on the correct site.

 

Do not share information over texts, emails

Additionally, investors should not trust texts, emails or chats that ask for your personal information.

Avoiding public WiFi is also a great idea as is updating your software from time to time. Regularly changing the passwords is great as well. Change the password regularly and use a password manager like LastPass or 1Password.

 

‘Hot’ wallets are vulnerable

As Solana continues to work with Slope Finance in conjunction with their partners OtterSec and SlowMist to restore normalcy, this incident again serves to highlight the vulnerability of ‘hot’ wallets to cyberattacks, despite the faster transaction times offered by them.

Comprising the entire collection of web-based, mobile and desktop wallets available today, ‘hot’ wallets should be used in conjunction with ‘cold’ or hardware wallets to strike the perfect balance between speed, functionality and security.

For those actively trading in crypto tokens and other crypto assets, it is recommended to hold trading funds in a ‘hot’ wallet while the bulk of their crypto holdings remains secure in a ‘cold’ or hardware wallet.

Nearly impossible to hack hardware wallets

Since a user’s private keys never leave the device, stealing funds from a hardware wallet is an almost impossible task for malicious cyber entities. Ranging from 50 to a few hundred dollars, the security offered by these hardware wallets more than compensates for the one-time costs involved and is highly recommended for all crypto investors out there.

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NFT market slumped by 25% between June and July

NFT market slumped by 25% between June and July

Along with the general crypto market, NFT sales have taken a massive hit in the face of the ongoing crypto winter.

According to data from NFT aggregation site CryptoSlam, July’s secondary NFT market sales fell to $650 million, a 25% drop from June figures. This is the second month in a row that NFT sales have been below $1 billion.

Anndy Lian, blockchain author and entrepreneur and founding member of NFT creator studio Influxo explained that “the current [crypto] market right now is in a bear market […] so [NFT] sales actually reflect very much on how the market is reacting.”

Meanwhile, NFT relations strategist for CryptoSlam, Yehudah Petscher said he thinks the market was yet to find the bottom.

 

I don’t know if we’ll find the bottom this year […] I believe this bear market we’re in could extend for multiple years.

However, Petscher is optimistic about the number of unique buyers currently in the market. The number of buyers fell just 7% month-on-month in July to 532,000, a higher figure than that of July last year. He said that while total sales in U.S. dollars are down, the number of transactions makes for a slightly more optimistic outlook.

 

NFTs are in a rough place right now, but I still think in a very healthy place as far as growth [or] as far as transactions [are concerned].

The upcoming “Merge” for Ethereum could give the NFT market a boost, as the leading blockchain for NFTs is due to move to a proof-of-stake (PoS) consensus in the coming months. The transition aims to reduce the energy used in the Ethereum network by up to 99%.

“I think [the Merge] will create another spur of hype among the Ethereum fan base,” Lian said, warning that transaction fees will likely remain high.

Meanwhile, Yuga Labs projects continue their dominance of the bestseller list in July, with the company’s Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC), Mutant Ape Yacht Club (MAYC), and CryptoPunks all in the top five.

 

Original Source: https://www.investing.com/news/cryptocurrency-news/nft-market-slumped-by-25-between-june-and-july-2860876

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