Bitcoin is a cryptocurrency and worldwide payment system. It was created in 2009 by an anonymous person or group of people with the name “Satoshi Nakamoto.” It’s entirely decentralized, meaning that no one owns it, and no one controls it.
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The whole system works without a central bank or single administrator. The network is peer-to-peer, and there is no intermediary between users when transacting.
Network nodes verify these transactions through the use of cryptography and entered in a public distributed ledger called a blockchain. It’s completely anonymous, decentralized, and untraceable. This is why governments hate it.
Bitcoin can’t be taxed, printed, and traced. Bitcoin is stored in “bitcoin wallets” that can be either digital or hardware. Bitcoin works on a public ledger called a blockchain, where individual transactions are included in blocks. As each block enters the system, it undergoes validation when it is broadcasted to the peer-to-peer network of users which makes all users aware of each transaction to prevent stealing and double-spending (where someone spends the same currency twice).
Some of bitcoin Transactional properties are:
• Irreversibility: After confirmation, bitcoin transactions can‘t be reversed. Help comes from nowhere, if you send your funds to a scammer or if a hacker stole them.
• Fast and global: Transaction is transmitted instantly in the network and is confirmed in few minutes. Since it occurs in a global network of computers, they are completely apathetic of your physical location. Bitcoin can be sent to anyone in any part of the world.
• Security: Bitcoins are locked in a public key cryptography system. Only owners of the private key can send cryptocurrency. The magic of big numbers and strong cryptography makes it impossible to collapse this scheme.
All over the world, some companies like REEDS Jewelers in the US, PayPal, Dell, Microsoft, Expedia do, too. Magazines such as Bitcoin Magazine publish news about bitcoins.
Problems of bitcoin include hacking of account by thieves, high volatility, and transaction delays. However, people may find bitcoin their most reliable channel for giving or receiving money.
Bitcoins are created through a process called mining. Mining is the process of adding transaction records to Bitcoin's public ledger of past transactions. Miners solve complex mathematical computations to create a new coin.
Computations come out as mathematical puzzles that become harder with the creation of each bitcoin. Bitcoin miners are in constant competition to bring forward a solution to a complex math problem.
Whoever wins ends up with some tokens. Mining a block has a reward which currently stands at 12.5 bitcoins. When a miner completes a mathematical problem, they add a block of transactions into an existing chain of similar transactions bundled or rolled up in blocks to form a blockchain.
To solve the mathematical programs, one needs a special type of computer. Miners use cryptographic hash functions to solve a block having transaction data via computers with enormous resources.
Bitcoin mining could lead to free Bitcoin. You are guaranteed to get bitcoins in return if you employ its basics or go for more complex mining measures. There are those who want to engage in free bitcoin mining (no cash spent on hardware or software).
Free bitcoin mining is possible, but it takes serious effort to enjoy its rewards. Mining hardware is expensive. You have to spend to set up a decent mining rig. If you have a low budget, free Bitcoin mining is definitely what you should engage in, given that you have a desktop computer with a decent video processor card.
Mining software is the keystone of free Bitcoin mining. There is reliable software out there you can get for free, and they can be downloaded online. Look for mining software that corresponds to your terms. While the earnings are relatively lower, you get a more consistent flow of bitcoins.
A cryptocurrency wallet is a secure digital wallet which is used to store, receive and send your digital currency to another wallet account or spend it for a purpose. You must have a wallet account to store or trade in cryptocurrencies.
A transaction occurs when there is a transfer of value between cryptocurrency wallets which gets included in the blockchain. Private Key (secure digital code known only to you and your wallet), which is a secret piece of data, is used to sign transactions in cryptocurrency wallets.
Private Key shows ownership of a public key (a public digital code connected to a certain amount of currency). Your wallet stores your private and public keys, allows you to send and receive cryptocurrencies and acts as a personal ledger of transactions.
There are various types of wallets you can use. They can be in the form of online, offline, desktop, mobile, hardware, and paper wallet.
The following are different types of cryptocurrency wallets we have:
• Desktop Wallet:
It is the most common type of wallet. It is an application that connects directly to a bitcoin’s client.
• Mobile Wallet:
It is a wallet that runs from a smartphone application.
• Online Wallet
An online wallet is a web-based wallet. No application is downloaded, but data is hosted on a real or virtual server. Some online wallets are also hybrid wallets that allow encryption of private data before being sent to the online server.
• Hardware Wallet
Hardware wallet is specifically built to store cryptocurrency and keep it secure. This includes USB devices. These devices can go online and offline to make transactions, get data, for transportation and security.
• Paper Wallet
Paper wallets allow you to both send and receive cryptocurrencies. With this option, you can completely avoid storing digital data about your cryptocurrency by using a paper wallet. You can print out a QR code for both public and private key.
Bitcoin is a digital asset and payment system with a market capitalization of approximately $166 billion as of 10:00 UTC on February 1, 2018, according to Coinmarketcap.com.
Bitcoin is considered by many users to be the most successful and game-changing cryptocurrency ever created. The following are people who became bitcoin millionaires by investing in the digital currency, compiled from recent media reports.
• 50 Cent (a.k.a Curtis Jackson)
US Rapper, 50 Cent (a.k.a Curtis Jackson) appears to have accrued a small fortune in bitcoin. TMZ reported that 50 Cent rediscovered recently he has some bitcoin sales left untouched. At that time he reportedly made around 700 bitcoins in album sales for his fifth album, Animal Ambition, which was launched in June 2014. One bitcoin was worth $657 on the date of the album’s launch. He made around $460,000 in sales at that time. Today, that same amount of bitcoin is worth $7,700,000.
• Barry Silbert
Barry Silbert is the CEO and founder of Digital Currency Group. The company's mission is to speed up the development of the global financial system, and the mission continues to be accomplished by building and supporting bitcoin and blockchain companies. The firm has invested in more than 70 bitcoin-related companies and is the world's leading firm investing in bitcoin-related companies. Recently, Digital Currency Group acquired CoinDesk, a leading source of bitcoin news, which runs the annual bitcoin industry conference.
• Erik Fineman
Erik Fineman invested in bitcoins since 2011 when he was only 11 after his grandmother gave him $1,000 and his brother told him what to do with the money. In those days, bitcoins were only worth $12 each. When Fineman sold his first bitcoins at the end of 2013, each one was valued at $1,200. Fineman made $100,000 from the $1000 his grandma gave him to start an online education company in 2014. Fineman sold his education company and was offered the choice of accepting $100,000 or 300 bitcoins. He took the bitcoins. Fineman achieved his goal of becoming an 18-year-old millionaire.
• Jeremy Gardner
Jeremy Gardner began investing in bitcoin during the early days and received a significant payoff. In 2013, he exchanged some cash he had for bitcoins with one of his friends, and he began feeling fascinated by what he will do with the currency with nothing more than an Internet connection. He also loved that there was no centralized regulatory body for bitcoin.
As Gardener became plunged in the bitcoin world, he became a strong and emphatic voice in the cryptocurrency world, frequently using social media as a platform. Wisely, He invested money into starting and supporting companies associated with bitcoins and blockchain technology. Gardner didn’t disclose how much money he made by investing in bitcoin technologies, but he is referred to as a “self-made millionaire.
• Tim Enneking
Tim Enneking is a perfect example of how to succeed in bitcoin investment. He’s a hedge fund manager who accomplished the all-time annual records for both funds and funds of funds. Enneking was doubtful of digital currencies, though he started running the world’s first digital currency fund.
During his work, Enneking decided to research about bitcoins. When he realized there were no red flags, he concluded that there was more to the cryptocurrency than he initially thought and started looking for ways to become more heavily involved in funds management.
• Olaf-Carlson Wee
He’s another person who recognized the potential of bitcoins before many other people and became a millionaire as a result. In February 2013, when a single bitcoin’s worth was between $20 to $29, Carson Wee worked for a bitcoin startup called Coinbase.
At that time, bitcoins were not part of the cultural consciousness yet, and the mere mention of them caused raised eyebrows if people were aware of them at all. Nevertheless, Carlson Wee considered bitcoins as a promising currency.
He agreed with his employer to only get paid with bitcoins instead of physical money, and he started making transactions with bitcoins whenever it’s possible. Those decisions he made were finally profitable because it made Carlson Wee a millionaire.
There are several bitcoin wallets in the form of applications which can be used to store, send and receive bitcoins.
They are in three forms as follows:
• Desktop applications: they are installed on your computer. It gives you complete control over your wallet. You are responsible for protecting your money and doing backups.
• Mobile applications mobile wallets applications allow you to store, send and receive bitcoin on your smartphones. Bitcoins can be exchanged easily, and payment is possible in physical stores by scanning a QR code or using NFC “tap to pay.”
• Web applications: web wallets applications allow you to use bitcoin on any browser or mobile and often offer additional services. However, care must be taken with web wallets applications because they host your bitcoins.
There are two ways you can buy bitcoin in Singapore. You can go online to one of the many bitcoin exchanges to transact with bitcoins or go to a local ATM where you can exchange your Singapore dollars for bitcoin instantly.
There are some popular bitcoin exchanges in Singapore and users can do pretty much anything with bitcoins. They are Coinbase, Coinmama, GDAX, LocalBitcoins, Luno, CoinHako, FYB-SG, Bitcoin ATMs, VirWoX, Mycelium Local Trader, Changelly, and Bitcoin-otc.
In India, you can purchase Bitcoin from Zebpay exchange. Zebpay has Android and iPhone applications which let you link your bank account for quick transfers. There are also other exchangers by which you can easily store, send and receive bitcoins and they are: Unocoin, Coinsecure, Coinmama, LocalBitcoins, Bitcoin ATMs, VirWoX, Mycelium Local Trader, Changelly, and Bitcoin-otc.
The Philippines has one of Asia’s most sophisticated Bitcoin platforms which enable users to transfers with Bitcoin, settle any money-related bills, and payments, and. Bitcoin platforms, including Rebit.ph and Coins.ph, are highly popular in the Philippines because of their simple user interfaces and cost-effective services.
Other exchanges in the country are Coinmama, LocalBitcoins, BuyBitcoin.ph, prepaidbitcoin.ph, BTC exchange, Coinage, Wall of Coins, Bitcoin ATMs, VirWoX, Mycelium Local Trader, Changelly, and Bitcoin-otc.
When it comes to investing in digital currency like bitcoin, the benefits are huge. Benefits like unparalleled security, reduced transaction fees, a hedge against central governments printing money out of thin air. These are the reasons Forbes is calling digital currency “the future of money.”