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Is this the new face of organized crime? Decoding Razzlekhan, the rapping bitcoin fraudster | Bitcoin

Heather Morgan is free, for now. The 31-year-old fraudster was offered bail on Valentine’s Day, releasing her from incarceration while her husband, Ilya “Dutch” Liechtenstein, remains in federal bondage.

Morgan is at the centre of a psychedelic cryptocurrency saga, that began when the pair were arrested on suspicion of laundering $4.5bn worth of stolen bitcoin. That money was originally pilfered from a Hong Kong-based crypto exchange firm called Bitfinex, and it breaks the record for the most digital currency that’s ever been seized by a criminal sting operation. (The pair allegedly spent the money on NFTs, gold and a Walmart gift card.) It’s the first major crime saga of the Web3 era – Blockchain noir, ripe for a Safdie Brothers film – and each twist in the storyline is more implausible than the last.

But who is this Bitcoin crime queen and what does she tell us about the future of organized crime and the stark new inequalities that it might create?

The money that Morgan and Lichtenstein are accused of laundering was originally pilfered six years ago, and honestly it’s a minor miracle that the Department of Justice was capable of digging it up in the first place as crypto is notoriously difficult to recover. So far they have seized $3.6bn. So if you are already the sort of person who might be seduced by the grifter’s lifestyle, cryptocurrency is a natural hideout point.

Everything about this case is more evidence of the worryingly psychotropic texture our monetary system has taken on in 2022 – a year when late-night hosts are dropping thousands of dollars on cartoon apes and YouTube prankster Logan Paul is making $20m per boxing match. It is hard to articulate how it feels to be alive in an age of massive wealth disparity and multiple deregulatory lines of questionable crypto minting, but I think watching an alleged Bitcoin embezzler struggle through painful rap bars in a flat-billed cap that reads “0 FCKS” is a good summation of the overwhelming confusion.

Let’s begin with the many layers of Heather Morgan’s business portfolio. It turns out that when The Crime Queen of Bitcoin is not conducting her digital heists, she’s also an ascendent TikTokker, a self-help YouTuber, an economic columnist and most impressively, an amateur rapper. The alias she uses for her artistic ventures: “Razzlekhan.”

After her arrests, the world was briefly subsumed by Razzlekhan’s mesmerizing public brand as reporters around the world splunked through the tranches of content left behind in Morgan’s wake. In one memorable music video, she gallivants through Wall Street in John Lennon sunglasses and a leopard-print scarf, ready for a fight. “I’ve got pallid blood, I’m a real risk-taker,” she rhymes in the shadow of a bronze George Washington statue.

There’s also a 14-minute YouTube soliloquy where Razzlekhan doles out higher-education advice. “I’m not trust fund,” she says. “My parents both work for the government. I’ve been totally broke and homeless. Money, in my mind, comes goes. Sometimes you have it and sometimes you don’t.” She makes no reference as to the exact nature in which she found herself with money.

Morgan was upfront about her financial avarice in a column she wrote for Inc. in 2021 entitled: 4 First-Time Founder Mistakes to Avoid at All Costs, Morgan asks readers to remember that your desire to hustle should never run dry. “The first million dollars in revenue is so exciting,” she wrote. “But once you hit that, you’re thinking about how to get to $5m, $10m, and suddenly $100m.”

At one point she asks her viewers to consider a goal, and find the “easiest path” to achieve it. Pinned to the top of her Twitter page is a quote that is erroneously attributed to Winston Churchill: “You have enemies? Good. That means you’ve stood up for something in your life.”

It is unsurprising that Morgan surfaced within the burgeoning blockchain underground.She embodies a ubiquitous type in the world of crypto – the chronically posting hustle-entrepreneur who has consolidated every available publicity stunt and duplicitous business undertaking within reach to brute-force a hollow, demi-influencer’s subsistence. To think that those music videos might’ve been funded by freshly laundered crypto credit is ghoulishly predictable. The couple is “a perfect synecdoche for everything anyone doesn’t like about an attention economy in which anything can be financialized”, argues Vice in their investigation into her rap career. Unsurprisingly, this week also brought news that Netflix was already hard at work on a docuseries about the couple. Who knows? Maybe Razzlekhan is destined to become the next Tiger King.

Heather Morgan and Dutch Liechtenstein have not pleaded guilty. Their defense attorney has taken an adversarial stance in the proceedings thus far, claiming that the government’s case is “thin.” So perhaps normalcy will return, justice will be served and the world can breathe easy knowing that a mediocre rapper and her husband are not capable of participating in the largest crypto heist in human history. But for now we do not have that privilege and I think that’s why everyone keeps tumbling down the Razzlekhan rabbit hole.

The lasting legacy of Morgan and Lichtenstein may be that they’ve killed the image we hold of a criminal kingpin in our heads. It’s been a long time since the mob ran New York City, in part because traditional organized crime, with its body counts, turf wars and punitive sentencing measures, is far too risky for the expected gains. In their stead, we have received a generation of crypto eccentrics who have moved operations to the arctic regions of the American economy. The blockchain was always going to attract the most unbridled dreamers of the population, and now we are watching one of them morph into a supervillain dressed in leather pants and a flight jacket, calling themselves the Turkish Martha Stewart in some of the worst hip-hop ever recorded.

As we get deeper into our uncertain metaversal future I expect that the rise and fall of figures like Morgan will become increasingly common. There are so many skeletons lingering in the closets of Manhattan high-rises, especially the ones lined with Bitcoin.

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Open Source Software (OSS) Supply Chain, Security Risks And Countermeasures

OSS Security Risks And Countermeasures

The software development landscape increasingly hinges on open source components, significantly aiding continuous integration, DevOps practices, and daily updates. Last year, Synopsys discovered that 97% of codebases in 2022 incorporated open source, with specific sectors like computer hardware, cybersecurity, energy, and the Internet of Things (IoT) reaching 100% OSS integration.

While leveraging open source enhances efficiency, cost-effectiveness, and developer productivity, it inadvertently paves a path for threat actors seeking to exploit the software supply chain. Enterprises often lack visibility into their software contents due to complex involvement from multiple sources, raising concerns highlighted in VMware’s report last year. Issues include reliance on communities to patch vulnerabilities and associated security risks.

Raza Qadri, founder of Vibertron Technologies, emphasizes OSS’s pivotal role in critical infrastructure but underscores the shock experienced by developers and executives regarding their applications’ OSS contribution. Notably, Qadri cites that 95% of vulnerabilities surface in “transitive main dependencies,” indirectly added open source packages.

Qadri also acknowledges developers’ long-standing use of open source. However, recent years have witnessed heightened awareness, not just among developers but also among attackers. Malware attacks targeting the software supply chain have surged, as demonstrated in significant breaches like SolarWinds, Kaseya, and the Log4j exploit.

Log4j’s widespread use exemplifies the consolidation of risk linked to extensively employed components. This popular Java-based logging tool’s vulnerabilities showcase the systemic dependency on widely used software components, posing significant threats if exploited by attackers.

Moreover, injection of malware into repositories like GitHub, PyPI, and NPM has emerged as a growing threat. Cybercriminals generate malicious versions of popular code to deceive developers, exploiting vulnerabilities when components are downloaded, often without the developers’ knowledge.

Despite OSS’s security risks, its transparency and visibility compared to commercial software offer certain advantages. Qadri points out the swift response to Log4j vulnerabilities as an example, highlighting OSS’s collaborative nature.

Efforts to fortify software supply chain security are underway, buoyed by multi-vendor frameworks, vulnerability tracking tools, and cybersecurity products. However, additional steps, such as enforcing recalls for defective OSS components and implementing component-level firewalls akin to packet-level firewalls, are necessary to fortify defenses and mitigate malicious attacks.

Qadri underscores the need for a holistic approach involving software bills of materials (SBOMs) coupled with firewall-like capabilities to ensure a comprehensive understanding of software contents and preemptive measures against malicious threats.

As the software supply chain faces ongoing vulnerabilities and attacks, concerted efforts are imperative to bolster security measures, safeguard against threats, and fortify the foundational aspects of open source components.

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By John Elf | Science, Technology & Business contributor Digital

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Choco: Revolutionizing The FoodTech Industry With Innovation & Sustainability | EU20

By Clint Bailey

— In the rapidly evolving world of food technology, European startup Choco has emerged as a pioneering force. With its website,, this Berlin-based company is transforming the way food industry professionals operate by leveraging innovative digital solutions. By linking restaurants, distributors, suppliers, and producers on a single platform, Choco is streamlining the supply chain process while promoting sustainability.

Let’s explore the journey of and its impact on the overall foodtech industry.

  1. Company: Choco Technologies GmbH
  2. Website:
  3. Head Office: Berlin, Germany
  4. Year Established: 2018
  5. Founders: Choco was co-founded by Daniel Khachab, Julian Hammer, and Rogerio da Silva.
  6. Industry: Choco operates in the foodtech industry, specifically focusing on digitizing the supply chain for the food industry.
  7. Funding: Choco has secured significant funding rounds from investors, including Bessemer Venture Partners & Coatue Management.
  8. Market Presence: Choco has a strong presence in several European cities, including Berlin, Paris, London & Barcelona.
  9. Mission: Choco aims to revolutionize the food industry by leveraging technology to simplify supply chain management, promote sustainability, and reduce food waste.

Simplifying Supply Chain Management

One of the core focuses of Choco is to simplify supply chain management for food businesses. Traditionally, the procurement process in the food industry has been cumbersome and inefficient, with numerous intermediaries and manual processes. Choco’s digital platform replaces the traditional paper-based ordering system, allowing restaurants and suppliers to communicate and collaborate seamlessly.

Choco’s platform enables restaurants to place orders directly with suppliers, eliminating the need for phone calls, faxes, or emails. This not only saves time but also reduces the likelihood of errors and miscommunications.

By digitizing the ordering process, Choco improves transparency, making it easier for restaurants to compare prices, track deliveries, and manage inventory efficiently.

Streamlining Operations For Suppliers & Producers

Choco’s impact extends beyond restaurants. The platform also provides suppliers and producers with valuable tools to streamline their operations. By digitizing their product catalogs and integrating them into the Choco platform, suppliers can showcase their offerings to a wide network of potential buyers.

Suppliers benefit from increased visibility, enabling them to reach new customers and expand their market presence. Moreover, Choco’s platform helps suppliers manage their inventory, track orders, and plan deliveries effectively. These features enhance operational efficiency, reduce waste, and ultimately contribute to a more sustainable food system.
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Promoting Sustainability & Reducing Food Waste

Choco recognizes the critical importance of sustainability in the food industry. According to the United Nations, approximately one-third of the world’s food production goes to waste each year. By digitizing the supply chain and enabling more efficient ordering and inventory management, Choco actively works to combat this issue.

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Choco’s platform facilitates data-driven decision-making for restaurants, suppliers, and producers. By analyzing purchasing patterns & demand, Choco helps businesses optimize their inventory levels, reducing overstocking and minimizing food waste. Additionally, Choco supports local sourcing, enabling businesses to connect with nearby suppliers & promote sustainable, community-based practices.

Expanding Reach & Impact

Since its founding in 2018, Choco has experienced rapid growth and expansion. The startup has successfully secured significant funding rounds, allowing it to scale its operations and establish a strong presence across Europe and other global markets. Today, Choco’s platform is used by thousands of restaurants and suppliers, revolutionizing the way they operate.

Choco’s impact extends beyond operational efficiency or sustainability. By connecting restaurants, suppliers & producers on a single platform, Choco fosters collaboration & encourages the exchange of ideas. This collaborative approach strengthens the overall foodtech ecosystem and creates a supportive community of like-minded aiming to drive positive change within the industry.

Future Of FoodTech

Choco’s rise to prominence in the foodtech industry exemplifies the reach of sustainability, innovation, and community. Through its user-friendly platform, Choco simplifies supply chain management, streamlines operations for restaurants & suppliers, and actively promotes sustainable practices. By harnessing the potential of digital, Choco is disrupting the future of the food industry, making it more efficient and transparent.

As Choco continues to expand its impact and reach, its transformative influence on the foodtech sector is set to inspiring, grow other startups, and established players to embrace technology for a better and more sustainable food system.

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— Compiled by Clint Bailey | Team ‘Voice of EU’
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The Implications Of Controlling High-Level Artificial Super Intelligence (ASI)

Artificial Super Intelligence (ASI)

By Clint Bailey | ‘Voice of EU’

The notion of artificial intelligence surpassing humanity has long been a topic of discussion, and recent advancements in programs have reignited concerns. But can we truly control super-intelligence? A closer examination by scientists reveals that the answer is highly unlikely.

Unraveling The Challenge:

Controlling a super-intelligence that surpasses human comprehension necessitates the ability to simulate and analyze its behavior. However, if we are unable to comprehend it, creating such a simulation becomes an impossible task. This lack of understanding hinders our ability to establish rules, such as “cause no harm to humans,” as we cannot anticipate the scenarios that an AI might generate.

The Complexity Of Super-Intelligence:

Super-intelligence presents a distinct challenge compared to conventional robot ethics. Its multifaceted nature allows it to mobilize diverse resources, potentially pursuing objectives that are incomprehensible and uncontrollable to humans. This fundamental disparity further complicates the task of governing and setting limits on super-intelligent systems.

Drawing Insights From The Halting Problem:

Alan Turing’s halting problem, introduced in 1936, provides insights into the limitations of predicting program outcomes. While we can determine halting behavior for specific programs, there is no universal method capable of evaluating every potential program ever written. In the realm of artificial super-intelligence, which could theoretically store all possible computer programs in its memory simultaneously, the challenge of containment intensifies.

The Uncontainable Dilemma:

When attempting to prevent super-intelligence from causing harm, the unpredictability of outcomes poses a significant challenge. Determining whether a program will reach a conclusion or continue indefinitely becomes mathematically impossible for all scenarios. This renders traditional containment algorithms unusable and raises concerns about the reliability of teaching AI ethics to prevent catastrophic consequences.

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The Limitation Conundrum:

An alternative approach suggested by some is to limit the capabilities of super-intelligence, such as restricting its access to certain parts of the internet or networks. However, this raises questions about the purpose of creating super-intelligence if its potential is artificially curtailed. The argument arises: if we do not intend to use it to tackle challenges beyond human capabilities, why create it in the first place?


Urgent Reflection – The Direction Of Artificial Intelligence:

As we push forward with artificial intelligence, we must confront the possibility of a super-intelligence beyond our control. Its incomprehensibility makes it difficult to discern its arrival, emphasizing the need for critical introspection regarding the path we are treading. Prominent figures in the tech industry, such as Elon Musk and Steve Wozniak, have even called for a pause in AI experiments to evaluate safety and potential risks to society.

The potential consequences of controlling high-level artificial super-intelligence are far-reaching and demand meticulous consideration. As we strive for progress, we must strike a balance between pushing the boundaries of technology and ensuring responsible development. Only through thorough exploration and understanding can we ensure that AI systems benefit humanity while effectively managing their risks.

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By Clint Bailey, Team ‘THE VOICE OF EU

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