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Buying Bitcoin with Paypal

Bitcoin is a decentralized, peer to peer cryptocurrency which is used to make anonymous transactions without leaving behind any traces. Bitcoin is the first cryptocurrency to gain this much public attention and is being largely accepted by merchants as a form of payment all around the world.

In terms of usage, Bitcoin investment is no different from traditional currency. The users can buy, sell items through online as well as trade goods/services in physical stores. However, not everything is same. There are several factors that differentiate Bitcoin from traditional currency.

Let’s take a look at some of the major ways in which Bitcoin is different from paper money.

How Is Bitcoin Different from Traditional Money?

  1. Unlike fiat money, bitcoin is decentralized. There is no clearing house or authority (Government, Visa Network, MasterCard, Central Bank, etc.) to regulate the flow of cryptocurrency.
  2. Bitcoin network is peer to peer and is managed by users/miners around the world.
  3. The transaction fees are much lower because the money is transferred without going through a clearing house.
  4. The coins are earned by a process called Bitcoin mining. The miners around the world assemble blocks and are given mathematical problems to solve using Bitcoin algorithms. Those who are able to solve them correctly are rewarded with bitcoins.
  5. All Bitcoin transactions are stored in a public ledger called “Blockchain”. Anyone can visit this ledger to verify a transaction. This openness makes the cryptocurrency more transparent and reduces the possibility of any kind of fraudulent activity and double spending of the same coin. (Find out more on what is Blockchain and how does it work here)
  6. The currency can be obtained via Bitcoin exchanges or mining.
  7. For now, just handful of merchants on the web and in physical stores accept Bitcoin as a method of payment. However, the trend is increasing each day.
  8. A downside of bitcoins is that they are not insured by the government agencies which ultimately makes them irrecoverable if lost. If an owner somehow loses a hard drive or any other device in which the currency was stored, the coins are gone for good.

These are some of the facts about bitcoins that make them different from traditional currency. Now let’s go and look for the answer of” “is Bitcoin a good investment?”

Is Bitcoin A Good Investment:

Although bitcoins are gaining more acceptance and increasing in popularity each day, investing in Bitcoin is never considered a good idea. This because the currency is highly volatile and unpredictable.

For example, the Bitcoin price skyrocketed from $14 to $1200 and then dropped to $632 per BTC within a year. Such high instability in value makes Bitcoin a risky investment.

The best way to invest in bitcoins is to buying bitcoin with Paypal when they are being sold for less than $10 per BTC as this will give investors a larger margin of safety.

Tags: bitcoin investment sites, trusted bitcoin investment sites

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Latest Updates: Google is going to ban all Crypto-Ads

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Google is taking an action against the online advertisements related to cryptocurrencies at the beginning of June.

The company is upgrading its Financial Services Policy to restrain crypto advertisement, including wallets, trading advice and initial coin offerings (ICOs). This means that companies with legal cryptocurrency offerings won’t be permitted to serve ads through any of Google’s advertisement products, which place advertising on its own sites as well as third-party websites.

In another post, Google said that it took down 3.2 billion ads that violated its advertising policies in 2017, nearly double of the ads that it removed, back in 2016.

crypto advertisements

Facebook took the same step in January, the move affected most of the Google’s advertised products, which means organizations won’t have the ability to serve crypto advertisement on the search engine giant’s own sites, as well as third-party sites in its network.

Google’s director of supportable ads, Scott Spencer, told CNBC

“We don’t have a crystal ball to know where the future is going to go with cryptocurrencies, but we’ve seen enough consumer harm or potential for consumer harm that it’s an area that we want to approach with extreme caution.”

Crypto advertisement

The company also said that the policy will be executed across its platforms, including Facebook, Audience Network and Instagram. In the beginning of this year, Facebook banned crypto-related advertisements, mentioning the potential for “deceptive promotional practices.” It’s been reported that the crypto advertisements have also been vanishing from the social media sites of China as there’s a ban on ICOs and crypto exchanges in China.

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Why South Korea Is Considering to Legalize ICOs

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The Korea Times has recently reported that local financial authorities are planning to legalize ICO (Initial Coin Offering) soon. An anonymous source has told The Korean Times:

“The financial authorities have been talking to the country’s tax agency, justice ministry and other relevant government offices about a plan to allow ICOs in Korea when certain conditions are met”

initial coin offerings

What’s the reason behind ICOs legalization?

Few South Korean mainstream media outlets have revealed that “Kakao” is concentrating on assimilating cryptocurrencies for its 100 million users. Kakao is basically the largest internet firm of South Korea, and there’ve been many reports that it’s planning to integrate cryptocurrencies on its each and every application, which will let the users to utilize KakaoPay for both sending and receiving cryptocurrencies.

Kakao is also planning to conduct an ICO and issue its own token. However, it’s been also reported that due to the present regulations on local ICOs, Kakao is preparing to conduct its ICO outside of the country, South Korea. If ICO of Kakao is conducted somewhere else, it may lead to an extensive loss for the economy of South Korea, particularly in the Blockchain sector.

It’s expected that the government of South Korean is on its way to legalize ICOs in order to prevent the leading conglomerates of South Korea from leaving the country to conduct ICOs, as it might also have a bad impact on the cryptocurrency industry as well as local Blockchain sector.

Apprehension about ICO protection 

Financial Services Commission chairman, Choi Jong-Ku has recently shown his concerns to the local ICOs, mentioning that high risks are involved for investors inside the crypto-market.

However, even with the concern of investor’s protection by the FSC, there are still many sources inside the government that explain how local financial authorities are trying to allow local ICOs by enabling strict AML (Anti-Money Laundering), KYC (Know Your Customer), and taxation policy for investors.

 

Is South Korea and U.S. SEC on the same line?

The government of South Korea is willing to let companies conduct ICOs on condition that the token sales are registered with the government, which is on the other hand similar to the stance of the U.S. SEC Securities and Exchange Commission.

At this time, the South Korean government is on the same line with the U.S. SEC and is ready to allow only those ICOs that are registered with local financial authorities. Kang Young-soo (FSC cryptocurrency trading policies director) has confirmed that there are rumours about the legalization of ICOs, as he stated:

“There are many speculating about the possibility of allowing ICOs. The FSC has acknowledged a third-party view regarding the issue, but there’s nothing that we can say officially at the moment.”

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What Is Bitcoin Hard Fork? The Most Intriguing Bitcoin Topic Explained!

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To begin with, Bitcoin has been the talk of every news channel, tabloid, website, etc. for a long while now. It’s increasing popularity might’ve caused a little problem for the network. Bitcoin is in a messy situation right now and something needs to be done. Fortunately, two possible solutions have been proposed as well, but only one can exist.

What is Bitcoin Hard Fork?

It is a compulsory software update that is required in order for the program to function.  It can be implemented to fix bug errors or any security issues present in the older version of the software. Also, a hard fork is irreversible.

The “hard fork” will split the blockchain, leading to the introduction of a new chain of transactions branching from the original one.

Bitcoin Fork Explained – What’s The Issue?

In simple words, Bitcoin is unable to withstand the number of transactions taking place on the network.

The technical explanation is that the 1MB block size limit which is programmed into the system has become a problem and is causing delays in the processing of transactions. Basically, a purchase can take from a few minutes to hours to confirm.

Two techniques were proposed, which result in two different solutions: Bitcoin Unlimited, and Segregated Witness. They’re both proposed software updates to the Bitcoin network with the aim to completely change the way Bitcoin functions.

Obviously, the two can’t coexist, that would “fork” the Bitcoin network – splitting it into two different digital currencies.

A fork is known as a software update. Basically, updating a program from an old version to a new one to fork bitcoin.

Bitcoin Unlimited:

Starting off with Bitcoin Unlimited, this proposal is favored majorly by Bitcoin miners. To understand this, you must know the concept of Bitcoin mining. Bitcoin miners use specified powerful computers to solve complex mathematical algorithms in order to verify a transaction and be rewarded with newly issued bitcoins.

We are aware that there is a built-in block size limit of 1MB in the Bitcoin network, however, BU gives miners the permission to vote on increasing the block size whenever they want. This gives them control of the Bitcoin network, due to which they’re favored by miners.

Segregated Witness:

On the other hand, SegWit is being voted by many Bitcoin enthusiasts and developers. Their aim is to optimize the Bitcoin coding in a way that allows them to decrease the transaction size and increase the transaction volume, all while sticking to the 1MB block limit. They suggest the use of a soft fork.

A soft fork is a software update that lets the network to adapt to the new functionalities and features implemented. The update doesn’t interfere with the existing software and the older version will still be usable.

When is Bitcoin Hard Fork Happening?

Every Bitcoin user around the world is anxiously waiting for August 1st– a day that will mark the history of bitcoin. No one really knows what to expect but we are all eager to know what will be the fate of Bitcoin. We’re approximately 2 weeks away from the big day so let’s reflect back on the possible end result.

On 31st July, the activation of SegWit2x is set to take place. SegWit2x is a proposal that will enact SegWit through a Soft Fork but will increase its block-size limit by Hard Fork after three months. So, basically, SegWit2x will be introducing Segregated Witness first which will follow a 2MB block-size increase three months later.

Moreover, SegWit2x has the support of major mining pools which means it’s backed up by miners.

What Will Be The Bitcoin Hard Fork Consequences?

When the 2MB hard fork is scheduled to be introduced, there are chances of a chain split to occur cause of the soft fork. This, in return, would lead some part of the community jumping on to SegWit2x while others remain on SegWit.

This can create a very messy situation as there would be two different kinds of Bitcoin present. The last thing we’d want is to damage Bitcoin, particularly since there are high chances of two competitor blockchains existing simultaneously.

What Should I Do in Order To Prepare For August 1st?

You’re advised to move your bitcoins to a private wallet, where you solely are in charge of your private keys. Also, be sure to do this before July 31st, and remain until storm calms down. We are not aware of what is in store for us on August 1st or the day after, and the future is a total blur. So, let’s sit back and watch the calendar hit August.

Who Will Be The Winner?

Aha! Too bad we can’t answer this question because half the community goes for SegWit and the other half for BU. There’s not really much we can do, just voice out our opinion and educate others with whatever we learn and maybe help them come up with opinions of their own.

We’ll just have to patiently wait and watch how this turns out.

I’d like to point out that I have a very limited technical knowledge and only know my way around a few technical terminologies. This post is a compilation of weeks of research that I’ve put together myself. So, if you do find any errors, do let me know in the comment section below and I’ll be sure to check.

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Xcoins Review

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Today we’ll be reviewing Xcoins, which is a new peer-to-peer lending platform that was launched recently.

Xcoins Review

Buying bitcoins is risky business for everyone, especially due to the possibility of a chargeback. However, Xcoin claims to have found a way around this, since they loan you bitcoins instead of selling them to you. Here’s how it works:

Visit the site and select to “loan” some bitcoins. You’ll be asked to verify your ID and requested to deposit the USD equivalent of how much you’d like to borrow + credit card/ PayPal processing fees + a fixed amount that will be acting as the interest rate on the loan.

Fortunately, there is no ongoing interest on the loan since it is just a one-time payment. Usually, these fees go up to more than 20%.

Selling (or lending) Bitcoins on Xcoins

Xcoins even gives the option to lend bitcoins. You can decide how much you wish to loan in USD and deposit that amount in your Xcoins account. The system automatically matches you with suitable buyers and they will deposit money directly to your PayPal account.

Xcoins Review

In this scenario, you are lending .5 BTC. You would make 15% profit and Xcoins would make 10% profit.

Xcoins put the risk of the transaction on the lender that wants to make money from the premium. There is currently a 15% premium on the bitcoin lending as seen above. So as long as you get a fraudulent customer for less than 15% of the time, you’d end up with a profit.

Xcoins claims that they thoroughly screen all the people that want to buy bitcoins, to reduce the amount of fraud. Also, new users can only withdraw a limited amount of bitcoin and the limit only increases after the user develops a good reputation over time.

What are the benefits?

The main benefit for any seller is obviously to earn around 15% interest when selling bitcoin on the platform.

For the buyer, the advantage is that you don’t need to wire money to an exchange. You can get bitcoin instantly through PayPal or credit card by just paying a slightly higher premium.

What are the risks?

Once you turn over your bitcoins to the buyer, they can choose to challenge the PayPal transaction and unfortunate to the seller, PayPal almost always sides with the buyer. So, the buyer would end up with both the money and bitcoins and you’d be left with nothing else than remorse. This is why you get paid a premium.

 

Conclusion – Will I be using Xcoins?

Being a buyer: Xcoins still seems a little unstable to be used for large purchases since it is very new. Although, if the only way you can acquire bitcoins is through PayPal and you’re willing to pay the price, this might be a substitute to VirWox.

Being a seller: No one would want to risk being flagged by PayPal, thus I wouldn’t recommend this to others as well. However, if you want to try it out, go ahead and please share your experience with us right here in the comments section. We’d love to hear all about it!

In case you’re looking for other platforms where you can purchase Bitcoins, be sure to check out Wirex, VirWox, LocalBitcoins, Cryptonit and Paxful.

 

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Blockstream-Bring Privacy to All Blockchain Assets

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On a blockchain platform, all the participants are free to check the transactions. This transparency level provides the much security to the users. Basically, it is a public verification process, where the cheating percentage is fall to its minimum level or zero. Unfortunately, it is not also good in privacy matters.

To improve the privacy terms, confidential transactions are its potential solution. Whereas, these transactions hide the transacted bitcoin which is using in test environment and academia.

A number of bitcoin core developers discover the confidential assets. These transactions are categorically designed for the bitcoin.  Confidential assets carry a level to any blockchain asset such as ownership paper, stock etc.

Blockstream engineer Gregory Sander says, “With Confidential Assets, we can generate multi-asset transactions where both the amount and the asset type itself are encrypted”.

Confidential asset

Basically, confidential assets are not a new born concept in the technology world. It is increasing in two ways.

The first part of this puzzle is planted on confidential transactions, which was introduced by the current Blockstream CEO Dr. Adam back. Blockstream developers Gregory Maxwell, Dr. PIETER Wuille and mathematician Andrew Poelstra further work on this and expand it to blockchain’s alpha sidechain.

According to these transactions, only receiver and sender will come to know the transacted amount. A public verification process, that is the rest of the world-where the transactions were created between the sender and the receiver. But the transacted amount is masked.

Whereas, in confidential transactions are masked in a programmed way that public verifier will able to perform a certain type of math on them.  If they cancel out the transaction, anyone is capable to add up the committed amount on the sending end. And, add up all amounts on receiving end. In addition, if they don’t cancel, means no amount was created out. In that way, a public verifier will fail to know how much was transacted. They have the idea that system wasn’t cheated.

The second part of the puzzle is quite new, which boost up the masking to assets themselves. Confidential assets include blockchain based assets not only bitcoin.

Sanders says, “While the sender and receiver would know that, say, a gold certificate was transacted, a public verifier would only know that ‘some asset’ was transacted — in ‘some amount”. “And if multiple assets are transacted at once, the public verifier would see that multiple types of ‘some assets’ changed hands, and he can verify that no ‘some assets’ were created out of thin air. But he would still not know what was transacted exactly, or how much of each ‘some asset”.

Projects

Confidential assets advanced in two different projects.

For one, it may be associated with the existing sidechain such as a liquid. This is an organize blockchain fix to the bitcoin. Where the blocks confirm by the service provider. which permits the transactions at little cost without troubling the main blockchain. Exchanges use this to let the customers move the bitcoins among different accounts without confirmation from the blockchain. Confidential assets allow to move the fiat currency as well.

In addition, Blockstream start a teamwork with Japanese IT company Digital Garage.

Sanders explains, “Digital Garage is working on a loyalty points blockchain” and “This means that all types of companies can issue their loyalty points, and customers can use them or trade them atomically for other assets using market makers. Privacy is huge here because you do not want to be showing the whole world how many points are outstanding on your books”.

Furthermore, confidential assets sidechain is a private decentralize exchange. This elementary setup can expand to mediators that act. Sanders says, “For the Digital Garage demo we have implemented a trustless, blinded swap of multiple assets through peers already. If we can deploy fiat currency on the blockchain, we can make similar arrangements between Bitcoin and U.S. dollar, euro or yen”. Blockchain use case complexity matrix

 

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