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Essential pointsBitcoin is an electronic 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 digital wallet and used to buy other currencies or real 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 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.
This is done with no central authority or bank.Who generated itBitcoin and also the blockchain technology was made 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 to Gavin Andresen, the chief scientist at the Bitcoin Foundation.Over the years numerous people have claimed to be Satoshi, including Australian computer scientist Craig Wright.
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If the website gets hacked or someone gets your login information that 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 YOURURL.com sends your bitcoins to their wallet.After buying your coins you should transfer them into a secure digital wallet created by you and not hosted online.You can even write down the wallet's private key on a sheet of paper (that is known as a paper wallet) and stick it in a safe.If you don't store the private key on your computer or online then hackers can never break in and access your funds.
Bitcoin means different things to different individuals. For many, it is a future of freely moving currency untied to any central bank. To others, it is a purely digital entity of questionable worth and dubious origin. But what is 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 much 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 create 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 a few newly minted currency. That piece of digital currency is worth whatever the market decides through distribution and demand.Transactions are connected to some users Bitcoin address, which is stored on its general ledger, called the blockchain.