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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 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 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 relatively worthless bitcoins as a hobby years ago, only to now realise they're rich.One IT employee even threw out a hard drive containing 7,500 bitcoins.
All 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 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 claimed 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 that they can get and drain your funds from the exchange.There is no way to get a transaction to be revoked or revoked if a burglar sends your bitcoins for 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 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 people. For many, it's a future of moving currency untied to any central bank. To others, it is a purely digital entity of questionable worth and doubtful origin. But what's Bitcoin, in the here 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 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 a digital currency (bitcoin, lowercase). Bitcoin the stage is built on the concept of proof of work information which is expensive and time-intensive to create but can be easily verified.
To mine a bitcoin, a computer must 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 determines through supply and demand.Transactions are connected to some users Bitcoin speech, which is saved on its own general ledger, called the blockchain.