Is Bitcoin Actually Useful?

It’s hard to look at trending investments in 2018 without seeing news about bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. Increasingly viewed as commodities, these digital currencies made serious waves in 2017. Bitcoin nearly hit $20,000 in value, undoubtedly allowing a lot of early investors to cash out with serious gains. And though it has since declined fairly significantly, the 2017 surge is still on people’s minds. Everyone from amateur investors to serious hedge fund managers is at least keeping an eye on the crypto markets.

Is Bitcoin Actually Useful? - Bitcoin image

The question we have at this point, and the one anyone dabbling in cryptocurrency ought to think about, is whether it’s actually useful. Bitcoin was originally designed as an alternative currency, meant to take over as a secure, anonymous means of conducting basic transactions. This hasn’t happened yet, and in fact we’re nowhere near that point. But there are some ways in which bitcoin can be useful.

Online Retail Shopping

The slowest area for bitcoin adoption has been in-person retail. While there are certainly brick-and-mortar restaurants, coffee shops, and stores that will accept bitcoin payments in person, they tend to be few and far between, and you almost have to go out of your way to make use of them. Online, however, some of the biggest retailers in operation have begun to accept crypto payments. Overstock, eGifter, Shopify, and numerous travel-related platforms (like Expedia and CheapAir) are among those usually included on the list.

Bitcoin Debit Cards

This can almost seem a little bit unnecessary, but if you’re someone who’s determined to make practical use of bitcoin and you don’t have enough opportunities to do so, you can actually load up a debit card with cryptocurrency. It then functions just like any other debit card (meaning you can use it just about anywhere), but instead of being backed by a checking account, it’s simply loaded up with a dollar value backed by your bitcoin.

Gaming & Betting

There’s actually a lot of competition between online gaming and betting platforms as they attempt to find different ways to appeal to players. There are several factors that must be considered when choosing a platform to engage in real money gaming activity with, and increasingly one such factor is payment methods. Many people prefer more secure and anonymous means of making deposits, and for this reason more and more of these sites are accepting bitcoin payments. In fact, some online casino platforms now exclusively take bitcoin.

Short Term Potential

This won’t help you today or tomorrow, but it’s also worth noting that bitcoin advocates haven’t given up on its potential to replace ordinary currency. Only a few months ago a man who’s already made millions in bitcoin predicted that it will replace fiat currency in five years’ time. That may be a little bit optimistic, but there’s an argument to be made for exploring cryptocurrency now because it’s probably going to get at least somewhat more useful in day-to-day transactions.

6 Foolproof Tips for Safely Trading Cryptocurrency

Exchange services, cryptocurrency processing systems, and web wallets are each susceptible to online theft. Despite this fact, cryptocurrency continues to be one of the safest ways to move money online. Here are some tips to boost your cryptocurrency security.

6 Foolproof Tips for Safely Trading Cryptocurrency - bitcoin image

Photo by Andre Francois on Unsplash

Watch out for High-Volume Altcoin Trading

Treat any cryptocurrency exchange that engages in high-volume trade campaigns involving altcoins with caution. Altcoins are an alternative to Bitcoins. And, if the particular altcoin the exchange is pushing has a fishy reputation, steer clear. Another sign of a shady exchange is participation in “initial coin offerings.” You put yourself at risk when trading in new coins.

Trust Your Intuition

If it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it’s probably a duck. In other words, if an exchange seems shady, they probably are. You can learn a lot about the future prospects of a cryptocurrency exchange if some of their big names quit the company. For example, the director of MyCoin exchange resigned right before it became clear they were running a Ponzi scheme.

Diversify

If you put all of your eggs in one basket, you’re in big trouble when that basket falls. You don’t want your trading posture to have any one point of failure. To avoid this, diversify your risks. You can do this by investing in many different cryptocurrencies, storing your coins offline, and using more than one exchange service.

Be Careful Using Your Smartphone

You might want to purchase a separate smartphone specifically for cryptocurrency trading. And, if your smartphone has a ton of apps, do not conduct transactions on it. Cyber thieves can gain sufficient privileges to get your private information and blackmail you just by hacking one of the apps. If there are apps on your phone that you never or rarely use, uninstall them.

Protect Your Email Account

Use a strong password containing special characters and lowercase and uppercase letters to safeguard your email account. Add an extra layer of security to your account with multi-factor authentication. The vast majority of cryptocurrency-related hacks happen when a user’s email is compromised.

Keep Your Personal Email a Secret

Your personal email address should not be public knowledge. When you sell or buy cryptocurrency, exchange services typically submit notifications to your registered email ID. Attackers can track your transactions by compromising your email account. They can then potentially gain unauthorized access to your crypto wallets.

With these tips, you can have peace of mind as you enter the booming cryptocurrency industry.

Will Cryptocurrency Save Our Financial Woes?

Will Cryptocurrency Save Our Financial Woes? - hacker image

Pixabay

A lot has been said about cryptocurrency recently. And it’s becoming a very solid option. But for those people who have some savings with real money, is it a worthwhile option? Here’s why cryptocurrency is very hot right now, and why it’s something you should consider as part of your savings.

Saving On Bank Charges

When it comes to looking after your savings, you need it stored in a bank account so it can accrue interest. But for those who struggle financially and are constantly living in their overdraft, the bank charges alone can cause more than its fair share problems at the end of the month. Thinking about something like Bitcoin, which is a decentralized currency, this needs a lot more clarity and transparency to how it’s monitored. It has lower transaction fees than banks, meaning that if you can buy Bitcoin, you don’t have to pay as many charges as you would with a standard bank account. Buying Bitcoin is relatively straightforward now, you can buy Bitcoin in the UK easily, but you can buy Bitcoin anywhere now. And when you enter into a Bitcoin transaction, you can see that there is very low, or in fact, zero fees!

It’s Widely Accessible

You can buy Bitcoin anywhere in the world, but it’s also very easy to use. Cryptocurrency has a process to make you able to invest in different coins. Assessing the system is straightforward, and has little hassle, as opposed to trying to access money from a bank. You can also transport money easily. Instead of the typical concerns you have with moving a large amount of physical money, you can store virtual currencies like Bitcoin on a memory card, so nobody feels like they’ve got a hefty wad of cash stuffed in their pocket!

You Can Use It (Almost) Anywhere

Cryptocurrencies are fast becoming accepted everywhere, and the great thing about cryptocurrencies that there’s no exchange rates, transaction charges, or interest rates exclusive to a certain country. As a result, you are getting more bang for your buck, and it’s an easier process when it comes to transactions. Lots of online retailers accept cryptocurrency now, so if you are savvy enough, you could buy everything through cryptocurrency. Retailers like Amazon accept Bitcoin, and as time goes on, we will see more retailers accepting Bitcoin and cryptocurrency. You might even see your local high street retailer accept it!

Of course, with cryptocurrency, it’s something that isn’t tangible. So to an extent, it’s not that easily monitored. This can bring up worries as far as the security of your online currency is concerned. Although there is a process called cryptography which helps add a layer of security to any transaction. The other problem with cryptocurrency being so hot right now is that everybody’s jumping on the bandwagon. As a result, using cryptocurrency as a way to save your finances might not be completely foolproof, as people are jumping on it like the gold rush back in the 1800s, but on the other hand, being savvy and knowing exactly what you are dealing with will put you ahead of the curve. So it’s not just the only way to make a saving, but it’s something you can do in addition to saving physical money. The more currencies you have, the more you can play the market!