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According to the Federal Reserve Governor, Lael Brainard, the central bank is examining the intense volatility of cryptocurrencies, especially Bitcoin, however, she doesn’t think that virtual currencies stance a present threat to financial stability of US.

These remarks were made by Brainard on 3rd April, during a speech at Stern School of Business in New York. She alerted investors to be careful about speculative asset classes, like; cryptocurrencies.

Brainard said:

federal reserve

“One area that the Federal Reserve is monitoring is the extreme volatility evidenced by some cryptocurrencies…. For instance, Bitcoin rose over 1,000 percent in 2017 and has fallen sharply in recent months. These markets may raise important investor and consumer protection issues, and some appear especially vulnerable to money-laundering concerns.”

“As in other highly speculative markets, individual investors should be careful to understand the possible pitfalls of these investments and the potential for losses. But it is less clear how the valuations of cryptocurrencies currently could pose a threat to financial stability. Nonetheless, we will continue to study them,” Brainard continued.

Risk Factors

According to Brainard, the perils related to the banking sector and traditional asset classes like bonds and stocks are balanced by the past standards due to the modifications that were introduced after the financial crisis of 2008.

She also said:

“Credit growth is robust, and banks are registering strong profitability relative to their international peers.”

Jerome Powell Views

The opinion of Lael Brainard on cryptocurrencies resounded the thoughts of Jerome Powell, who is the Federal Reserve chairman.

In November 2017, Powell said:

“I have nothing against bitcoin… We generally look at some of the risks of cryptocurrencies associated with money-laundering and those sorts of issues, but we’re not broadly opposed or supportive of alternative currencies.”

Latest comments from the Federal Reserve follow the price swings of bitcoin and other digital currencies, that sustained momentum for few weeks. However, during the past four weeks, the price of bitcoin plunged more than a few times.

Although these inconsistent fluctuations in the price of Bitcoin have scared some investors, cryptocurrency “preachers” still remain bullish, as they say, that the recent slump in the market is momentary, and only the result of “sharp regulatory scrutiny” in major markets such as South Korea.

Bitcoin Prediction

The Former COO of Skype, Michael Jackson said:

“Regulators seem open-minded and are now working to eliminate the risks for consumers…. So, I see no reason why bitcoin shouldn’t fulfil its dream. And if it does, then recent price falls will appear trivial.”

Jackson earlier said that the price of bitcoin could shoot up to $1 million, as he believes that its value as a payment method is irrefutable.

 

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Coinbase Buy Bitcoin: Bitcoin Cash Launch Delays Because Of Overwhelming Demand from Buyers

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Coinbase is a secure online platform for buying, selling, storing and transferring digital currency and it’s the most popular way to buy and sell Bitcoin, Ethereum and Litecoin.

Last month, few issues have been experienced on Bitcoin’s GDAX exchange during the launch of Bitcoin cash trading. Coinbase has blamed exceptional demand from buyers for these issues. On 20th December, the firm added support for bitcoin cash, however, Coinbase moved to disable trading of its newest assets after this unexpected news.

Adam White, who’s the manager of GDAX said in a blog post that they did their best efforts for creating a fair and orderly market, however, the launch of bitcoin cash didn’t go well and they also understand why the customers are so upset. He also said that they’ll share a detailed timeline of events and other additional information about the decisions for improving the future launches.

He added, that on 3rd August 2017, it was announced that customers could withdraw their bitcoin cash (BCH) balances by the 1st January 2018. Later, the decision was deferred. After monitoring the Bitcoin Cash network, some factors were observed such as; developer support and network security. And in the end, it was concluded that the bitcoin cash met the standards of Digital Asset Framework so it could be traded on GDAX.

Coinbase buy bitcoin

According to the blog post, in the 2 minutes and 40 seconds after BCH/USD trading started, almost 4,000 orders were placed, in which 3,461 matches occurred, and trading volume got to $15.5 million. Furthermore, he added, the low cash flow also triggered the price of the cryptocurrency to leap as high as $9,500, a lot higher than listed on other exchanges.

The constant liquidity complications made the relaunch of BCH/BTC and BCH/EUR books to be postponed until the end of winter holidays, when there would be higher possibility of meeting liquidity standards that are needed to enable trading. White accepted that regardless of the firm’s best efforts to create an impartial and methodical market, the launch did not go as it was expected.

On 13th November 2017, employees were informed about the decision to support BCH trading and were overtly verboten from buying and selling BCH. All employees were also forbidden from sharing this information with anyone else outside of the Coinbase. Coinbase has also announced that it will start an inquiry if any of the employees have desecrated its insider trading rules.

It’s not the first time that price movements have seemed to anticipate changes in the exchange to list new cryptocurrencies. According to an information from Coinmarketcap, the prices of the cryptocurrency began increasing at least a day in advance. Only four assets have been listed by Coinbase on its GDAX exchange, which offers order, bitcoin cash ether, order books for bitcoin, and litecoin.

Well, the move to list bitcoin cash was different and unique, as it effectually gave all the customers of Coinbase’s GDAX exchange an amount of bitcoin cash equivalent to the amount of bitcoin they detained on the exchange at the time, when the new cryptocurrency network was formed and Coinbase has also specified that it will definitely look for relaunching bitcoin cash trading later.

 

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What is a bitcoin wallet address?

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If you’re having difficulty in understanding the difference between Bitcoin wallet and Bitcoin wallet address keep reading on to clarify your doubts.

Before we dive straight into the address bit, you need to understand what exactly a Bitcoin wallet is.

What is a bitcoin wallet address

A bitcoin “wallet” is basically a vault for your bitcoins. It contains all the information on your transaction history and balance.  It allows you to store, send and receive bitcoins.

There are two main types of wallets:

Software walletIt’s to be installed on your desktop or mobile. This wallet will be completely under your control and it is your choice what kind of software wallet you’d like to install.

Web walletIt is hosted by a third party and is usually quite user-friendly, but it is your call to trust the provider to maintain high levels of security to protect your bitcoins.

What is a bitcoin wallet address?

It is simply a unique 26-35-digit combination of letters and numbers and it looks something like this, 1ExAmpLe0FaBiTco1NADr3sSV5tsGaMF6hd

Addresses can be generated at random and free of cost by any Bitcoin user. You will use this address to receive and send bitcoins from your wallet. You are able to send bitcoins to someone, by sending it to their bitcoin address. However, for each payment request or invoice, a new bitcoin address is generated.

Your Bitcoin wallet address can also be represented as a QR code. If somebody wishes to send your Bitcoin, they can scan the code using their Bitcoin wallet and send Bitcoin to your wallet:

What is a bitcoin wallet address

Bitcoin addresses are created as part of a key generation process that creates a pair of keys. They are a matched set, where one is public and the other is private. When you “sign” a bitcoin address you are running the public and private keys through an algorithm that checks whether those keys belong together. Usually signing is talked about in the context of a message. Someone sends you a signed message and you can verify that the message came from the genuine person. You can verify the message because it was signed with their private key and you match it to their public key.

When sending bitcoins, the signed message is a portion of the bitcoin transaction and you do not explicitly see the message, it is just part of the transaction. This lets you validate the ownership of the address. The transaction was signed with the owner’s private key and you check that it’s valid using their public key. Bitcoin wallets usually contain this message signing and verification functionality.

Make sure you and only you control the private keys to your bitcoins!

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How To Use A Bitcoin ATM

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Bitcoin ATM

Bitcoin ATMs are nothing much unlike than the traditional ATMs that almost all of us are very familiar with. The main difference is the usage of Bitcoins for transactions rather than the debit cards. In a traditional ATM, you insert a debit card to receive the cash you require; Bitcoin ATM helps you exchange cash for Bitcoin or vice versa. These Bitcoin ATMs allow you to dispense in fiat currencies too just like the traditional ATMs.

Keeping the true essence alive, these ATMs also allow you to perform the transaction anonymously as well. For Bitcoin ATM users this privacy comes with some privacy though. These ATMs charge about 7-10% for the sale and purchase of these Bitcoins per transaction. Which may be a good amount for some of the coin holders to pay. But it may be a price worth paying for some.

Some of these Bitcoin ATMs also aid other cryptocurrencies, like Ethereum and Litecoin.

A Bitcoin ATM near you

With the increasing acceptance and interest of people in Bitcoin around the world, there are now successfully 1700 Bitcoin ATMs installed in across 58 countries. So finding a Bitcoin ATM installed near or closest to you is easy. There are specific Bitcoin ATM maps designed, where you enter your location and you get a list of ATMs in your area. It’s more of a radar service that also connects you to the live worldwide Bitcoin ATM map. You will be surprised to see the number of ATMs emergence in the map.

Once you get to choose the suitable ATM, you can click for more details about certain specs and particularization of the particular ATM.

Though there are around 40,000 different service providers to help you exchange cash for Bitcoin and Bitcoin for cash. So why use Bitcoin ATM?

At most, these ATMs, at least most of them don’t really require a lot of information from your end. These machines don’t require your personal information. Bitcoin wallets or their addresses and the cash is all that is required.

Inserting your cash and acquiring the subsequent number of Bitcoins in return in a few seconds is a very simple and easy process. Out of all the other services available, this is the easiest, quickest and most cloaked form of the transaction of this digital currency.

Bitcoin ATM-Basics

So, basically, most of these ATMs work more or less the same way. But a few may vary from the others in few ways and steps. For instance, a few places, you can only acquire Bitcoins and cannot sell the coins. These ways may also vary depending on the manufacturing formation of some brands and types, depending on their set limits and verifications.

  • Verification
  • Bitcoin deposit address
  • Insert cash
  • Confirm operation

These are the general processes following all the Bitcoin ATM processes throughout. Two of the world’s biggest Bitcoin ATM companies that have laid hands in the manufacturing of this vastly spreading industry is Genesis Coin and General Bytes. These companies offer different models and types of Bitcoin ATMs specific to the needs and for the relevant business nature, they are required for. These machines are also exported by General Bytes to other countries around the world.

Bitcoin ATM- Process

The basic process for the usage of these ATMs is the same but it may vary due to a number of specific reasons.  The process to exchange Bitcoin for cash is very similar to the following process.

  1. The ATM will require you to scan your Bitcoin address first. If you want to receive Bitcoin, open your wallet in your smart device and scan the QR code to the specified screen on the ATM.
  2. The ATM will then require you to insert a bill. Your choice entirely. You can calculate the exchange rates on your smart device.
  3. After inserting the cash, the ATM will pop a screen showing the equivalent number of Bitcoins according to the cash you inserted. You can choose to SEND Bitcoins once you are done inserting the cash.
  4. Under a minute you will be able to receive the number of coins in your wallet.

In order to receive the cash, the process is pretty much identical.

  1. You can choose the option for ‘CASH’ from the main screen of the ATM.
  2. The screen will allow you to choose the amount of cash required.
  3. It will generate a QR code which you will scan on your smart device, showing the number of Coins being transacted during the process.
  4. Hit ‘Send’ from your device and confirm it.

In less than a minute you will receive your cash, just like the ATM.

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Bitcoin Criminals Are Using Bitcoin & Other Cryptocurrencies for Ransomware Payments

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As we already know that Bitcoin is the most popular cryptocurrency, complaints about Bitcoin are also growing rapidly. It’s been reported by many people that bitcoin’s transaction takes too long to get processed and it’s also very much expensive. Bitcoin Criminal use new hacking resources.

There are many indications that the currency is not going so well in favour of the underworld and the stories about culprits looking for bitcoin alternatives are not so new. The latest report by the forensic firm Chainalysis shows that the amount of bitcoin transactions that are related to the dark websites, where people frequently participate in criminal activities, has reduced by 30%.

The reason behind this huge drop is that many people are using bitcoin, and they’re only choosing to keep it, rather than spending it. However, Chainalysis counts multiple law enforcement agencies among its clients and also mentions the growing use of other cryptocurrencies like Zcash, Monero, and Dash.

bitcoin criminal

Fast and cheap transactions are not the only things that are offered by the new currencies, but they also include additional layers of anonymity that make them hard to track than bitcoin. Rob Wainwright (Executive Director of Europol), has also warned that this trend is already in progress. He also added that we’ll definitely see a progressive change in 2018 towards the criminal use of cryptocurrencies other than bitcoin, making it even more challenging for the law enforcement to counter.

A report by tech site ZDNet also shows that many researchers have claimed that slow transactions and high fees are causing culprits to move to Monero. ZDNet writes that it’s expected that soon, culprits will be also providing instructions to their ransomware victims on how to buy and exchange Monero. It’s been also reported that many companies have started to buy amounts of bitcoins so they’d be ready to pay up if they’re hit with ransomware.

While criminals are trying to turn away from the bitcoin for regular transactions, there’d be still very less chance of finding out if they’ve actually lost their interest in it or not. According to a report by Chainalysis, culprits might not want to use bitcoin, but they’d definitely want to steal it.

According to Chainalysis, theft of bitcoin has increased from at least $3 million to $95 million from 2013 to 2016, adding almost $172 million worth of bitcoin between the 2013-2017.

Image Credit: thehackteam

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Bitcoin forums – top rated bitcoin platforms

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Satoshi Nakamoto familiarizes Bitcoin anonymously around the world. The online digital currency was published in late 2008 on cypherpunk mailing list in its white paper. Furthermore, cryptographer follows the same method in the 1990s.

However, bitcoin has few online, offline and social media forums. We will discuss some top bitcoin forums in this article.

Online Bitcoin Forums:

A passionate community of the users, developers, businesspersons, investors follow the expansion of the bitcoin. Members of this community have a discussion about market trend, share their ideas regarding digital currency on both online and offline platforms. Following are few online platforms for the discussion.

The Bitcoin Mailing List:

Propagation of the bitcoin adoption among the public needs more development. Basically, they need a platform to share their ideas and developers start working on its core software to provide such comfort to the users. In 2011, bitcoin mailing list introduced on Linux foundation server especially launched for this purpose.

Where everyone has the opportunity to join the list. While brokers only allow posting on topics.

Bitcointalk:

A bitcoin platform, where bitcoin community is free to have a discussion about the Bitcoin technicalities. This forum was the part of the bitcoin.org in early 2011. Sirius owns this domain and admin goes by Theymos.

This platform is common for the signature campaigns or promotion messages attach to the comments by users. Those who meet the requirements for this feature, take compensation from the advertisers.

Reddit:

News accumulating site, which allows its users to arrange communities such as subreddits around topics of interest. Two most common subreddits such as r/Bitcoin and r/BTC, among the users, with 230,000 and 36,000 subscribers.  r/Bitcoin was the one-man show in late 2015. But, when scaling debate occurred, facilitators amended the discussion that supported Bitcoin XT. In addition, an increase in block size slightly than second-layer solutions. Then, few members launched r/BTC to reclaim their voice.

BTCwarriors:

A discussion site, where you are free to talk about the Bitcoin and have a lot of discussions about it. You can visit the site http://btcwarriors.com/

Social Media:

Bitcoin has covered all the aspect of the interest. It has the community channels, groups, lists, pages on all well-reputed websites. A large number of the companies have created channels on various platform such as slack to cover all the aspects of the cryptocurrency.

A single click on Facebook or Linked in will brings a wide information in front of you. Whereas, for other including WhatsApp, Telegram or slack – you need a group or network to proceed.

GitHub:

A forum where developers teaming up to work on the projects. Bitcoin has a source on the platform with the thousands of the commits from bitcoin core developers. In short, this is a place where only developers allow for underwriting the discussion by using their cryptographic code.

Offline Forums:

Three well-known Bitcoin forums provide the physical meetups, conferences, and hackathons.

Meetups:

Bitcoin community has active meetup groups around the globe. Meet.com facilitates such type of groups. Member of this bitcoin trading platform has the meeting once or twice in a month and share their experiences, market trend and current situation accordingly. In addition, few groups have to launch the pads for startups, a marketplace where anyone has the total opportunity to buy and sell physical bitcoin.

Bitcoin Conferences:

By attending the conferences, you have the opportunity to interact with others business holders, developers, talk persons from different communities.

Hackathons:

Hackathons were organized and developed by Bitcoin software developers and contributors. Contributors use them to showcase their innovations and compete. You can easily find such type of events around the world.

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