Ethereum Foundation to Allocate $30 Million to Blockchain Development in Coming Year

The Ethereum Foundation, a Bern, Switzerland-based non-profit organization focused on supporting the Ethereum (ETH) project, the world’s largest platform for building decentralized applications (dApps), is planning to allocate $30 million over the next year to fund the smart contract platform’s ongoing development.

This, according to Aya Miyaguchi, the Executive Director at the Ethereum Foundation, who also revealed during ConsenSys’ Ethereal Summit, held in New York on May 11, 2019, that the Foundation has already issued $27 million in grants in the past year. The grants are reportedly being used to fund the development of critical projects, which will support the evolving Ethereum ecosystem.

Focusing On Projects “Producing Second-Order Effects”

When questioned about the specific criteria the Ethereum Foundation has when issuing grants to various blockchain projects, Miyaguchi said the non-profit’s management evaluates “how important the problem is that the team is working on.”

Miyaguchi, an MBA Marketing graduate from San Francisco State University, also noted that projects are issued grants based on whether the Foundation believes they will “produce second-order effects” - meaning projects may receive funding if they can potentially benefit the larger cryptoasset and FinTech industry.

Projects Solving “Urgent” Problems To Receive Funding

The former high school teacher also said that certain projects may be allocated grant money based on whether they can solve an “urgent” problem. She revealed that last year’s grants had been released in five phases, with the initial disbursement made in March 2018. In total, the Ethereum Foundation issued $2.5 million in grants to around 13 crypto projects.

Established in July 2014 by Ethereum co-founders Vitalik Buterin, Gavin Wood, Joseph Lubin (among others), the Ethereum Foundation has supported several projects, including those related to decentralized finance (DeFi), which have been centered around developing use cases for the world’s largest smart contract platform.

$13 Million Allocated To Scalability Projects

According to Miyaguchi, Ethereum-related projects which focus on enhancing blockchain scalability have received the highest amount of funding. Around 90 different distributed ledger technology (DLT)-based projects have received grant money from the Ethereum Foundation in the past few years. To date, $13 million in funding has been allocated to projects specifically involved in increasing the throughput (scalability) of blockchain applications.

On May 11, 2019, Buterin and Lubin revealed they had donated 1,000 ETH (each) to support further growth and development of Ethereum-related projects. In total, both Ethereum co-founders donated 2,000 ETH ($380,000 at current prices) to the Moloch decentralized autonomous organization (DAO). The main goal of the Moloch DAO project is to raise funds which will support the Ethereum ecosystem.

Bitcoin Ransomeware Targeting Hospitals Amidst Ongoing Pandemic

Michael LaVere
  • Ransomware groups are still targeting hospitals despite the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic.
  • Reports confirm the bitcoin-related Ryuk program is attacking healthcare institutions. 

Operators of the Ryuk Ransomware are continuing to target hospitals amidst the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic. 

According to a report by BleepingComputer, multiple ransomware groups say they will continue targeting hospitals, despite the institutions being overburdened by the current crisis. The tech news outlet was able to contact seven ransomware groups, with the majority confirming they would continue to target hospitals and other medical centers. 

Maze and DoppelyPaymer were the only two groups to say they would no longer target healthcare, with the former returning data from a drug testing company prior to the outbreak. 

Operators of the bitcoin-related Ryuk ransomware program did not respond to BleepingComputer’s inquiry. However, other reports claim the group is taking advantage of the current pandemic to target healthcare providers. 

Vitali Kremez, head of research at AI security platform SentinelOne, told BleepingComputer that ransomware attacks against hospitals have not subsided, despite the impact of the Coronavirus. 

He said, 

Not only has their healthcare targeting not stopped but we have also seen a continuous trend of exploiting healthcare organizations in the middle of the global pandemic.

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