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Key pointsBitcoin is an electronic currency known as a cryptocurrencyThe peer-to-peer technology underpinning it's known as the blockchain a people ledger of transactionsBitcoins can be stored in a virtual wallet and used to Purchase other currencies or actual world goods
Where once a single bitcoin has been worth a few cents it's now worth about $9,200 per coin (November 2017), creating millionaires in the process.There have been many reported cases where people mined thousands of comparatively worthless bitcoins as a hobby years back, only to now realise they are rich.One IT employee even threw out a hard disk containing 7,500 bitcoins.
All this is done without a central authority or bank.Who created itBitcoin and also the blockchain technology was created by someone under the pseudonym of Satoshi Nakamoto and published as a working beta in 2009. Satoshi's true identity remains a mystery as he disappeared from the scene in 2010 after seemingly handing over the reins into Gavin Andresen, the chief scientist at the Bitcoin Foundation.Over years numerous individuals have promised to be Satoshi, including Australian computer scientist Craig Wright.
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If the web site gets hacked or someone gets your login details they can get and drain your funds from the exchange.There is no way for a transaction to be reversed or recovered if a thief sends your bitcoins for their wallet.After buying your coins you need to transfer Bitcoin Retailers them into a secure digital wallet created by you and not hosted online.You can even write down the pocket's personal key on a piece of paper (this is known as a newspaper wallet) and stick it in a safe.If you don't save the personal key on your pc or online then recipients can never break in and get your funds.
Bitcoin means different things to different individuals. For many, it's a future of freely moving currency untied to any central bank. To others, it is a purely electronic entity of questionable worth and dubious origin. However, what's Bitcoin, in the most elementary senseIn most casual conversations, you can eliminate knowing that bitcoin is, basically, an electronic currency.
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In reality, it is two considerably more complicated things.Bitcoin has been with us since 2009, when a person (or group) under the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto introduced a platform (Bitcoin, uppercase) that hosts a digital currency (bitcoin, lowercase). Bitcoin the stage is built on the concept of proof of work data that is expensive and time-intensive to produce but can be readily verified.
To mine a bitcoin, a computer must complete a complicated algorithm, essentially going through the work of an extensive calculation in exchange for a few newly minted currency. That piece of digital currency is worth whatever the market decides through distribution and demand.Transactions are connected to a users Bitcoin speech, which can be stored on its own general ledger, known as the blockchain.