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On 13th March, an annual Joint Economic Report was published by the US Congress in which the Congress dedicated a whole section to the Blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies, for the very first time.

Joint Economic Report

The Joint Economic Report (2018) contains a whole chapter that provides the insight of the effect of Blockchain and cryptocurrency on today’s US economy and includes scrutiny and recommendations for the rest of the year. According to the report, 2017 was the year of cryptocurrencies, and highlighted the extensive concern over Bitcoin.

The combined value of all Bitcoins in distribution equalled to approximately $15.5 billion, by the starting of 2017; however, it boosted almost 14-fold to over $216 billion by the end of the year. Cryptocurrency market cap was certainly influenced by high prices and such cryptocurrencies like Ripple, Ethereum, and Litecoin also experienced the same gains.

But at the same time, the report also stated that leading economists, like Chair Janet Yellen (former Federal Reserve), still don’t think that cryptocurrencies meet the standard definition of money, and for him, Bitcoin is a highly-speculative-asset.

A stirring surge has been shown in the price of crypto and Blockchain assets, which leaves few crucial economic indexes behind such as;

  • Dow Jones Industrial Average
  • S&P 500

The report says;

“…If digital currencies become less volatile in the future, valuing items in those denominations could become easier and individuals might begin using them more frequently as a medium of exchange”

Recommendations

There are few recommendations in the document, showing certain concern, as all of the authors advise government agencies are about to consider and analyze new customs for the technology. They specifically distinguish Blockchain’s potential to enhance agency competence and guarantee security against cyber-attacks.

The report also says;

“Policymakers, regulators, and entrepreneurs should continue to work together to ensure developers can deploy these new Blockchain technologies quickly and in a manner that protects Americans from fraud, theft, and abuse while ensuring compliance with relevant regulations”

The analysis also highlighted that Blockchain has demonstrated largely resistant to hacking and has a lot of potential applications. Even though Blockchain and cryptocurrencies still stir up clash, the analysis that was shown in the report proves that administrative associations cannot avoid the innovative technology of Blockchain.

The report also noted that the technology can be used in other fields like;

  • Healthcare
  • Securing critical financial
  • Energy infrastructure.

The Subcommittee on Securities, Investment and Capital Markets assembled for a hearing that was dedicated to ICO (Initial Coin Offerings), Blockchain development and cryptocurrencies in the US, making it quite simple understand that more regulatory clarification would be necessary from the US government.

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Cheapest Bitcoin Wallets – Best Bitcoin Wallets 2017

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Before using Bitcoin for any bigger transaction make sure to what you have to know and what are some best ways to secure your Bitcoin wallet. Always keep in mind it’s your responsibility to decide about your wallet carefully. Adopt some better practices to protect your money. A Bitcoin wallet is a collection of some private keys and used to make transactions on the Bitcoin network.

Some best Bitcoin wallets 2017 are:

1- BitCoin Core:

Bitcoin Core is developed to choose which blockchain have valid transactions and the users only accept the transactions for that blockchain. It’s those users who keep Bitcoin decentralized. They run individually their personal Bitcoin Core full nodes and each full node individually follows the same rule to decide which blockchain is valid.

Some Bitcoin Core features are:

  • Full Validation
  • Better Privacy
  • Excellent Security
  • Better User Interface
  • Support the Network

2- Armory:

Armory is a full featured and most secure means available for the users and organizations to generate and store Private Keys. The Armory team is experienced in private key and cryptography ceremonies.  Armory established cold storage and distributed multi-signature. The Bitcoin cold storage is a system for storing Bitcoin safely on a fully air-gapped offline computer.  At Armory, we attempt to improve constantly the best Bitcoin wallet with some extra security features.

3- Mycelium Wallet:

With the Mycelium Wallet, you can send and receive Bitcoin by using your mobile phone. The Supreme cold storage functionality enables you to secure your funds 100% until you spend them.

Features of Mycelium Wallet are:

  • Provide 100% control over your Private-Key.
  • No blockchain download, just install and run in seconds.
  • Manage your multiple accounts and never recycle addresses.
  • Ultra-fast connection to a Bitcoin network with the help of super nodes.
  • Read only addresses and Private-Key imported for secure cold-storage integration.
  • Protected your wallet with a PIN.
  • Support for BIP38 Keys.
  • Compatible with other Bitcoin services.

4- MultiBit:

  • MultiBit enables your Bitcoin wallet to make easy and fast transactions. After the installation process, a wizard guides you through effective steps to create your wallet and its backup. In just a few moments, you’ll be ready to join Bitcoin economy and now you can handle your funds and wallets. Your wallet and its backup resides encrypted on your personal computer and never with a third party.
  • MultiBit adds an extra security layer for your bitcoins when used with KeepKey. KeepKey is USB device which stores and secures your Bitcoin.

5- Xapo:

Xapo Wallet offers a way to handle your funds when or where you want with just the click of a button. You can also manage your funds by sending an email and swipe of your Xapo Debit Card. Xapo iOS is your mobile Bitcoin wallet that combines industry-leading and convenience security to handle your bitcoins and sending currency to your family and friends. Simply scan a QR or wallet address or enter a name, or email to instantly send money worldwide.

Features of Xapo Wallet are:

  • Fully insured Bitcoin storage in the market.
  • Send and receive Bitcoin in just two clicks.
  • Two-factor authentications.
  • By sharing Xapo on social networks you can earn Bits.
  • Zero network transaction fees.

6- Wirex:

Anyone can get the best for digital and traditional currency. You can get an online banking account, cheap money transfer, worldwide issued Bitcoin debit cards, and much more in just one place.

Features of Wirex are:

  • Secure and Convenient: Secured with multi-signature and two-factor authentication.
  • Easy Access: Manage all your accounts, past transactions, and debit cards by using your smart phone 24/7.
  • Total Freedom: Send and receive currency from 130+ countries and with almost no limits.

7- BitGo:

Generally, Bitcoin wallets have just a single Private-Key to make your Bitcoin susceptible to misplaced or theft. The multi-signature technology of BitGo offers three keys for your wallet. BitGo does not have the facility to access your Bitcoin as other Bitcoin companies have. BitGo only holds one key which not enough for the transaction on your behalf.

If only a single key is compromised, your Bitcoin cannot be stolen. This makes BitGo almost hack proof. BitGo required 2F authentications and use high-level security measure to make a full protection of your Bitcoin.

8- GreenAddress:

GreenAddress is a safer Bitcoin wallet which provides you full control and it doesn’t compromise your privacy. Our pre-transaction 2-factor authentications and multi-signature wallet empower you with a supreme control over your transactions. GreenAddress never keep your Private-Keys, not even encrypted. We also make it fast to view and transfer your funds.

9- CoinBase:

CoinBase is the world-famous source to buy and sell Bitcoin.  It is CoinBase is also a popular Bitcoin and Ethereum wallet. CoinBase provides the facility to buy, store, use, and accept Bitcoin and Ethereum securely. You can experience a best digital currency managing on the mobile phone.

Some additional features of Coinbase wallet are:

  • Send and receive Bitcoin.
  • Track the Price of Bitcoin anywhere with the help of Bitcoin price charts, Bitcoin price alerts, and Bitcoin price ticker.
  • You can check transaction history, balance, and transaction details of all your accounts.
  • You can send Bitcoin and Ether via email.
  • Send via QR code with zero transaction fees.
  • You can set a password to secure the mobile app.
  • You can remotely inactivate your phone’s access if it’s stolen or lost.
  • Historical and real-time Bitcoin and Ether price charts.
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A Beginner’s Guide to What Is Block Chain and How Does It Work

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The Blockchain is a public ledger which is used to keep the record of Bitcoin transactions or the transactions made in some other cryptocurrency.

There are three essential technologies used in Blockchain and none of them are new. Instead, it is their arrangement and application methods that are new.

These technologies include:

  1. Cryptographic keys
  2. Distributed Network
  3. Record-keeping and network security.

In this article, we have tried to make clear as to how these technologies cooperate to secure the digital relationships.

Technologies Used in Blockchain – Cryptographic Keys:

Suppose, two individuals need to make an online transaction of bitcoin, each of them holds a public and a private key. Both the keys are in an encrypted form.

The principle motivation behind having a public and private key is to create a digital identity reference. The Identity of a client depends on the blend of two keys.

The blend of these keys is additionally called “digital signature”, which, consequently, gives a strong control of possession.

However, having strong control of possession is not enough to secure digital relationships. While authentication is solved, it must be consolidated with a means of approving transactions and authorization.

In Blockchains, this starts with a distributed network.

Distributed Networks:

The concept of distributed networks can easily be understood with the “falling tree in the forest” example.

If a tree falls in a forest and we have cameras to record the event, we can positively say that the tree fell since we have the visual confirmation. Same can be said in regards to distributed networks.

A substantial piece of bitcoin Blockchain is a huge system of validators – similar to the cameras in above example – where they reach an agreement that they all witnessed the similar event in the meantime. But instead of cameras, they utilize mathematical verification.

To put it plainly, the size of a distributed network is critical for the security of the system.

Distributed networks are one of the primary elements of “Bitcoin Blockchain“. At the time of writing, the system is secured by 3,500,000 TH/s, more than the top 10,000 banks on the planet combined.

The System of Record Keeping and Security:

Lastly, cryptographic keys are consolidated with the system to create a super useful form of digital interactions. The procedure starts with taking sender’s private key, then making a declaration that he is about to make a Bitcoin transaction — and finally appending his private key to the recipient’s public key.

With regards to the earlier example of falling tree, a realist may come up with the question, why there were dozens of PCs with cameras, holding up to record whether or not a tree falls.

Now, translating the same question in blockchain terminology, how do you attract the computing power for the maximum network security.

With blockchains, clients are offered special rewards in return for giving their PC’s processing power to secure the system. Which, ultimately, pulls in an extensive number of clients offering their machines’ computing power. The more the power, the more secure the system.

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Why Bitcoin Puts Governments on Edge | Interview with David Seaman

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How to Buy Bitcoin In 2017

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Buying Bitcoin is simple and painless. All you need is a digital wallet as, without it, it’s impossible to buy and store Bitcoin.

A Bitcoin wallet is used for the same purpose as a traditional bank account for storing fiat currency.

Once you have the wallet, you will need to follow a simple process in order to buy the coins. Here, we have discussed how to buy bitcoins. So read carefully.

Buying Bitcoin – Getting Started:

There is a large number of brokers, exchanges, sellers and wallet providers, etc. selling Bitcoin. However, not all of them are reliable. Some are just there to steal your money.

To avoid theft, you should always look for well reputed and renowned names to make the purchase.

The Bitcoin exchanges require the users to provide their personal information – which may also include your photo and a copy of ID – to prevent theft.

Once your account is functional, you are ready to buy bitcoins instantly.

Buying Bitcoin with Debit/Card Instantly:

Buying bitcoins via debit/credit card is one of the easiest approaches out there. However, due to the complex transaction process, the fees can be high.

As a bitcoin buyer, you will come across numerous companies offering their services, but only a few of them are trustworthy.

Down below is a list of most trusted names that accept credit/debit cards and sell instant bitcoins.

Coinbase:

With the presence in over 30 countries, Coinbase is the largest bitcoin broker in the world.

Coinbase offers instant buy option, but to buy the coins instantly, you will need to provide your identity proof and bank card.

Coinbase users are normally categorized into two levels: level 1 users and level 2 users.

Level 1 users are the fully verified users and can buy up to $1k worth of bitcoin per week.

While level 2 users can only buy up to $100 worth of bitcoin per week.

Moreover, Coinbase only charges 3.99% in transaction fees which are pretty low compared to other exchanges.

Find out more about how to buy bitcoins via Coinbase safely right here.

CoinMama:

  • Offers instant bitcoins to debit/credit card users
  • Charges 5% in transaction fees and particularly good for those who buy in bulk.
  • Offers special packages to verified users as they can buy up to $5k worth of bitcoins per day and up to $20k per month.

BitPanda:

BitPanda is an Austrian exchange and is one of the most renowned across Europe.

The features of BitPanda include:

  • Instant bitcoin purchase through credit/debit card
  • Low fees. Just around 3-4%.
  • The buyers are required to go through a strict verification process.

A downside of BitPanda is that the fees are not mentioned on their site. If a user wants to know the fees, he must register an order first.

Some Other Ways to Buy Bitcoin:

Buyers who don’t have credit/debit card can also buy bitcoins through LocalBitcoins.com. All you have to do is enter your nearest area and arrange to meet up with a seller. However, make sure your meetup is in a public place to avoid any potential harm that the seller may possess for you.

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How to Buy Bitcoin in The UK

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This article will explain the six easy methods to buy Bitcoin in the UK. It depends on whether you choose to buy Bitcoin using cash, card or bank transfer. You will have different options available to you.

Here are some ways to buy Bitcoin in the UK.

Method 1 – Buy Bitcoin with Credit Card in the UK:

Some steps to buy Bitcoin with credit card in the UK are:

  • Pick a Website: Some of the best sites to buy Bitcoin with credit card in the UK include Bittylicious, CoinCorner, and Circle. This is the not much secure way and because of less security currently, it attracts the lowest limits, highest fee, and most strict verification. The process mostly includes some steps which are chosen service and follow their on-site instructions. The Circle may change this trend but they are newcomers and don’t officially support UK cards.
  • Enter the Amount You Want to Convert: The limits of transactions may be low at the start but they may increase after the first successful transaction or after finishing their verification procedures.
  • Enter the Bitcoin Wallet Address for whom You want to make payment to.
  • Make the Card Payment
  • Depending on restrictions to each site, after some time and verification, you’ll receive your Bitcoin.

Method 2 – Buy Bitcoin Using a Buying Service:

Some steps to buy Bitcoin using a buying service are:

  • Pick a service: The purpose of buying services is to make it easy to buy a small amount of Bitcoin. Best options in the UK include Bittylicious, SpeedyBitcoin, QuickBitcoin, CoinCorner, and CoinDuit. Some of them accept cards and some accept cash payments.
  • Enter the amount You want to exchange.
  • Enter the Bitcoin Wallet Address for whom You want to make payment to.
  • You will pay them usually by Bank Transfer, and you must have the transaction reference which they provide you with.
  • Within 15 minutes after the payment, you’ll receive your Bitcoin.

Method 3 – Buy Bitcoin Using an Exchange:

  • Go to a Bitcoin Exchange as CoinCorner and CoinFloor and create an account. CoinCorner and CoinFloor allow you to pay directly in Pounds. You may also choose Bitstamp and Kraken but these Exchanges will involve a conversion of Pounds to Euros and also a SEPA transfer. Generally, this conversion results in an additional fee. This is the best option if you buy Bitcoin regularly or in bigger quantities, as the Exchange rates are generally most competitive. If you just starting you must prefer to use a different option.
  • Transfer in money by SEPA or Bank Transfer.
  • Wait for your money to clear about 1 to 4 working days. This differs between Exchanges.
  • Transfer your money for bitcoins.
  • Transfer your Coins from Exchange to you Bitcoin Wallet.

Method 4 – Buy Bitcoin with ATM:

  • Check if there is a Bitcoin ATM nearby.
  • Make sure before going to the ATM that you’ve some Pounds Sterling notes because these machines don’t accept credit/debit cards.
  • Go to the ATM. You may also have to bring Proof of ID because some ATM machines require this.
  • Follow the on-screen instructions.

Method 5 – Buy Bitcoin from a Friend Who Owns Bitcoin:

  • Find a friend who already owns Bitcoin.
  • Check the exchange rate.
  • Decide a number of Pounds which you want to exchange.
  • Pay them your Pounds.
  • Provide them your Bitcoin Wallet address so your friends can pay you in Bitcoin.

Method 6 – Buy Bitcoin Using a Trader:

  • Find a Bitcoin Trader as Mycelium, BitBargain, and LocalBitcoins.
  • Choose a Trader with a respectable reputation score.
  • Send a message to Trader and ask further details about how to pay. For pay through cash agree the meeting place and time.
  • When the seller gets the payments, the seller issues the Bitcoin amount to Bitcoin Wallet address you provided.

 

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