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Essential pointsBitcoin is a digital currency known as a cryptocurrencyThe peer-to-peer technology underpinning it is known as the blockchain a people ledger of transactionsBitcoins can be stored in a virtual wallet and used to buy other currencies or actual world goods
Where once a single bitcoin was 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 individuals mined thousands of comparatively useless bitcoins as a hobby years ago, only to now realise they are rich.One IT employee even threw out a hard drive containing 7,500 bitcoins.
All this is done without a central authority or bank.Who generated itBitcoin and the blockchain technology was created by someone under the pseudonym of Satoshi Nakamoto and released as a working beta in 2009. Satoshi's true identity remains a mystery as he vanished 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 become Satoshi, including Australian computer scientist Craig Wright.
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In case 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 to their wallet.After buying your coins you should transfer them to 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 (that is known as a newspaper wallet) and stick it in a safe.If you don't store the private key on your pc or online then recipients can never break in and access your funds.
Bitcoin means different things to the original source different people. For many, it is a future of freely moving currency untied to any central bank. To the others, it is a purely digital entity of questionable worth and dubious origin. But what is Bitcoin, in the most basic senseIn most casual conversations, you can eliminate knowing that bitcoin is, basically, a digital currency.
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In fact, it is two much more complicated things.Bitcoin has been with us since 2009, when a person (or group) under the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto introduced a stage (Bitcoin, uppercase) that hosts an electronic currency (bitcoin, lowercase). Bitcoin the platform is built on the concept of proof of work data which is expensive and time-intensive to produce but can be easily verified.
To mine a bitcoin, a computer has to complete a complicated algorithm, essentially going through the job of an extensive calculation in exchange for some newly minted currency. That bit of digital currency is worth whatever the market determines through distribution and demand.Transactions are connected to some users Bitcoin speech, which can be saved on its own general ledger, known as the blockchain.