Remember when the U.S. Marshals announced several weeks ago that they are planning to auction some of the assets they seized from several cases involving the dark web commerce market Silk Road? Well, the feds pushed through with the plan and emerged with close to $2 million in profit.
Last Monday, a winning bidder claimed 2,700 bitcoin worth $1.58 million at the auction held by the U.S. Marshals Service, according to CoinDesk. The auction required a $100,000 deposit, and only five registered bidders sought to claim the bitcoin block, USMS reps told the news outlet.
If you’re wondering who won the bid, you’re not alone. USMS people said winning bidders can make themselves known if they choose, so of course the winner of the most recent auction will remain a mystery. Previous auction winners include bitcoin exchange itBit, investor Tim Draper and trading firm Cumberland Mining.
This isn’t the first time that the U.S. government auction off the bitcoins it confiscated in the cases involving Silk Road founder Ross Ulbricht. In November, the USMS sold 44,000 bitcoins worth $14.6 million to 11 bidders.
Blockchain for voting?
Meanwhile in Australia, which incidentally auctioned off $16 million worth of bitcoins in June, is mulling the use of blockchain—you know, the underlying technology behind bitcoin—for digital voting.
The government-owned postal service is reportedly planning to test digital voting via blockchain for “convenience, faster counting, efficiency, reduced costs and transparency.”
“The emergence of crypto-currencies on the technology known as blockchain have highlighted opportunities to repurpose that technology to capture various digital transactions in immutable, distributed and secure ways,” said Tim Adamson, Australia Post state director of Victorian Government and Tasmania, according to ZDNet. “In many ways voting is an ideal use case for blockchain technology application beyond cryptocurrency.”
Current bitcoin price and transaction volume
On Wednesday, the price of bitcoin dropped to $580.50, with a market cap of $9.25 billion and trade volume of $19.52 million.