Bitcoin news
Darkcoin's price plummets, police get cryptocurrency lessons and MtGox bots responsible for bitcoin bubble.

The price of bitcoin has dipped slightly, falling below $560, though it remains relatively stable following its dramatic leap in value last week.

Most other major cryptocurrencies have seen only slight shifts in value over the last 24 hours, with only the privacy-focussed darkcoin seeing any significant movement.

A 30% fall in value has meant that darkcoin has slipped back behind dogecoin to become the fifth largest (mineable) cryptocurrency, having reached as high as third - just behind bitcoin and litecoin - last week.

Darkcoin dives

Darkcoin's prolific rise, which saw its value increase ten-fold in just a few weeks, has come to a crashing end, dropping in price from $15 to $6 since the beginning of the week.

The reason for such a swing essentially comes down to the growing pains of a nascent network. A bug in the code which facilitates anonymous transactions resulted in payments being disrupted and exchanges freezing trading earlier this week.

darkcoin price dives
The price of darkcoin has dropped almost $10 this week following a network bug.CoinMarketCap

This led to a large-scale sell-off amongst the darkcoin community, due to concerns about the structural integrity of the network.

"This was either due to an intentional attack on the network or an issue with the masternode payments system," darkcoin developer Evan Duffield said in a blogpost. "In either case we have a solution for masternode payments that will be safe for the network in the future."

MtGox bots blew up bitcoin bubble

Two computer algorithms were responsible for the price of bitcoin inflating artificially towards the end of last year, according to a new report.

The algorithms, named Markus and Willy, bought up 650,000 bitcoins in the dying days of the MtGox exchange, causing the price of bitcoin to soar above $1,000.

"There is a ton of evidence to suggest that all of these accounts were controlled by MtGox themselves," the anonymously published Willy Report claims. "So if you were wondering how bitcoin suddenly appreciated in value by a factor of 10 within the span of one month, well, this may be why."

Police get lessons in bitcoin

Law enforcement officers in California are to take part in a class to better understand bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.

Police car

The Digital Currency/ Bitcoins for Law Enforcement 101 class (see below) will aim to facilitate the police when dealing with online black markets, drug trafficking and money laundering.

"Digital currency has taken a hold throughout the world as another form of currency," the seminar invite reads. "However, law enforcement is still playing catch up with digital currency.

"Would you know how to respond when taking a report from a victim stating, 'I had 1434 BTC in MtGox and they stole it?' You can bridge that gap by registering for Digital Currency 101."