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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 digital 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 instances where people mined thousands of comparatively worthless bitcoins as a hobby years ago, only to now realise they are rich.One IT employee even threw out a hard disk containing 7,500 bitcoins.
All this is done with no central authority or bank.Who created itBitcoin and the blockchain technology was made by someone under the pseudonym of Satoshi Nakamoto and published 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 into Gavin Andresen, the chief scientist in the Bitcoin Foundation.Over the years numerous people have claimed to be Satoshi, including Australian computer scientist Craig Wright.
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In case the website gets hacked or someone gets your login information they can access and drain your funds from the exchange.There is no way to get a transaction to be reversed or recovered if a burglar 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 pocket's personal key on a sheet 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 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. However, what is Bitcoin, in the most basic senseIn most casual conversations, you can eliminate knowing that bitcoin is, essentially, a digital 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 stage (Bitcoin, uppercase) that hosts an electronic currency (bitcoin, lowercase). Bitcoin the stage is built on the concept of evidence of work data which is expensive and time-intensive to produce but can be readily verified.
To mine a bitcoin, a computer has to finish a complicated algorithm, essentially going through the work try these out of an extensive calculation in exchange for some newly minted currency. That piece of electronic currency is worth whatever the market determines through supply and demand.Transactions are connected to some users Bitcoin speech, which is stored on its own general ledger, known as the blockchain.