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Key pointsBitcoin is a digital currency known as a cryptocurrencyThe peer-to-peer technology underpinning it's known as the blockchain a public ledger of all transactionsBitcoins can be stored in a virtual wallet and used to buy other currencies or real world goods
Where once a single bitcoin was worth a few cents it is 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 back, only to now realise they're rich.One IT worker even threw out a hard drive containing 7,500 bitcoins.
All this is done without a central authority or bank.Who generated itBitcoin and also 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 puzzle as he vanished from the scene in 2010 after seemingly handing over the reins to Gavin Andresen, the chief scientist at the Bitcoin Foundation.Over years numerous people have promised to become Satoshi, including Australian computer scientist Craig Wright.
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In case the website gets hacked or directory someone gets your login details they could access and drain your funds from the exchange.There is no way to get a transaction to be revoked or revoked if a thief sends your bitcoins for 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 wallet's private key on a piece of paper (this is known as a paper wallet) and stick it in a safe.If you don't store the private key on your pc or online then hackers can never break in and access your funds.
Bitcoin means different things to different individuals. For many, it's a future of moving currency untied to any central bank. To the others, it is a purely electronic entity of questionable worth and dubious origin. But what's Bitcoin, in the most elementary senseIn most casual conversations, you can get away with knowing that bitcoin is, basically, an electronic currency.
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In fact, 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 stage (Bitcoin, uppercase) that hosts a digital currency (bitcoin, lowercase). Bitcoin the stage is built on the concept of proof of work information that is expensive and time-intensive to create but can be readily verified.
To mine a bitcoin, a computer must finish a complicated algorithm, essentially going through the job of an extensive calculation in exchange for a few newly minted currency. That bit of digital currency is worth whatever the market decides through supply and demand.Transactions are connected to some users Bitcoin address, which can be stored on its own general ledger, known as the blockchain.