What would kill Bitcoin?

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The Bitcoin price dropped sharply from $2,500 last week to $1,850 on Sunday, July 16. In the beginning of this week, Bitcoin managed to recover and moved above a level of $2,000.

Not only the scaling issue drives volatility of Bitcoin price

Daniel Dabek, founder and architect of Safe Exchange Coin, stated to Coinidol.com that there are three main reasons for Bitcoin’s recent price fall. He said:

“In my opinion the price drop in Bitcoin is related to the following three points:
1. The summer months has volumes decreasing which means fewer buyers are entering the markets due to vacation and people's general lack of interest in playing markets.
2. ICOs and coin holders have been cashing out on the relatively high prices of all of the cryptocurrencies. Especially Ethereum and then to Bitcoin (which is still the most commonly used crypto currency for everyday purchases).
3. There has been an over subscription to trading on...

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The possibility of a crackdown on encryption systems in the UK has risen again, ringing alarm bells in the bitcoin community.

A terrorist attack that killed 30 UK citizens in Tunisia last month led one MP to question prime minister David Cameron on whether popular social networks and internet services would have to abandon their claimed privacy policies.

Cameron and the UK government are on record as saying they do not approve of any communication medium that is 100% secret.

The question is: given bitcoin's cryptographic foundation, would bitcoin businesses find it impossible to function in the UK if such secrecy were banned outright? At least one company has threatened to leave, and others could follow.

A long time coming

The issue has been simmering since January, when Cameron delivered a speech in which he noted it has always been possible for governments to monitor communications under certain circumstances.

"In our country, do...

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Bitcoin is the currency of the Internet: a distributed, worldwide, decentralized digital money. Unlike traditional currencies such as dollars, bitcoins are issued and managed without any central authority whatsoever: there is no government, company, or bank in charge of Bitcoin. As such, it is more resistant to wild inflation and corrupt banks. With Bitcoin, you can be your own bank.

If you are new to Bitcoin, check out We Use Coins and Bitcoin.org. You can also explore the Bitcoin Wiki:

How to buy bitcoins worldwide
Buying Reddit Gold with bitcoin

Will I earn money by mining bitcoin?

Security guide for beginners - (WIP)

Community guidelines

Do not use URL shortening services: always submit the real link. Begging/asking for bitcoins is absolutely not allowed, no matter how badly you need the bitcoins. Only requests for donations to large, recognized charities are allowed, and only if there is good reason to believe that the person...
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Edward DeLeon Hickman · September 15, 2014 · 3:46 am

Amid the turmoil of today’s news regarding Russia “banning bitcoin“… again. It seems a good time to sit back and ask ourselves just what kind of threats cryptocurrencies face both internally and externally.

The obvious starter to this conversation is of course, government regulation. As entrenched oligarchies feel their stranglehold of the money supply loosening we can expect a whole range of tactics to be employed by various regulatory bodies across the globe. In fact, my think tank has been ominously calling the end game of this development “World War C”, as governments realize they cannot stop cryptocurrencies without eventually resorting to violence and outright totalitarian control.

Doomsday scenario’s aside, world governments should really be thanking their lucky stars Bitcoin currently holds the top...

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Editor’s Note: Bitcoin has had a remarkable year, more than doubling since the start of 2017. Below, Editor at Large Chris Lowe sits down with self-described “bitcoin bull” Teeka Tiwari to discover what Diary readers need to know about the future of the popular cryptocurrency.

Chris Lowe (CL): Bitcoin has been going up steadily for the last three years. What is driving bitcoin higher?

Teeka Tiwari (TT): It’s that people are waking up to the idea that they can have control over the value of the currency they use. Right now, there’s a global currency war. Countries are debasing the buying power of their currencies to try to steal growth from one another.

On top of that, you have the War on Cash, which I know you’ve reported on extensively. It’s getting harder and harder to have private ownership of your money. Central banks do not respect private ownership of your cash. There is an increasing number of bans, like the one you saw in India last November. [Catch up...

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The way things are going, the digital currency Bitcoin will start to malfunction early next year. Transactions will become increasingly delayed, and the system of money now worth $3.3 billion will begin to die as its flakiness drives people away. So says Gavin Andresen, who in 2010 was designated chief caretaker of the code that powers Bitcoin by its shadowy creator. Andresen held the role of “core maintainer” during most of Bitcoin’s improbable rise; he stepped down last year but still remains heavily involved with the currency (see “The Man Who Really Built Bitcoin”).

Andresen’s gloomy prediction stems from the fact that Bitcoin can’t process more than seven transactions a second. That’s a tiny volume compared to the tens of thousands per second that payment systems like Visa can handle—and a limit he expects to start crippling Bitcoin early in 2016. It stems from the maximum size of the “blocks” that are added to the digital ledger of Bitcoin transactions, the blockchain,...

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The destiny of Bitcoin, like that of Apollo 13, shall never be realised, at least according to one of the cryptocurrency's most well-known developers, who has announced that "the experiment has failed".

Mike Hearn was a senior software engineer at Google up until 2014, when he left to focus his full-time attention on Bitcoin development. In a blog post on Thursday, Hearn announced he would longer be taking part in Bitcoin development and had sold all of his coins.

His 4,000-word essay on the "resolution of the Bitcoin experiment" has already drawn much criticism from those who believe the project still has legs – though many also acknowledged Hearn's concerns about the political issues affecting the open source project.

Hearn has long been an advocate within the Bitcoin community for raising the limit on the block size – the files recording transaction data which form the blockchain, Bitcoin's transaction database which allows the cryptocurrency to function...

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Authored by Teeka Tiwari via InternationalMan.com,

On June 20, 2011, Forbes wrote “So, That’s the End of Bitcoin Then.”

On January 16, 2015, USA Today wrote “Bitcoin Is Headed to the ‘Ash Heap.’”

On May 5, 2017, The Daily Reckoning wrote “The Death of Bitcoin.”

Since 2011, bitcoin’s been declared dead at least 129 times.

Newsletter writers, journalists, and academics have called it a “Ponzi scheme.”

Others like the idea in theory but have doubts. They are convinced the government will shut down bitcoin and render it worthless.

If it were 2013, I would have agreed with them.

From 2009–13, bitcoin rallied from a fraction of a penny to over $1,100… and then spectacularly crashed 85% to $185.

It looked like a classic “pump and dump” to me. That’s why I ignored it.

But then something very interesting happened.

Instead of collapsing back to pennies, bitcoin found support in the $200 range. Even after the...

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The world’s favorite virtual currency has been on a rollercoaster ride this year. On 1 January, one Bitcoin was worth $13. By April, they were trading for $266, before a sudden, spectacular collapse.

The virtual currency has had a history rich in peaks and troughs. Fortunately, Forbes have constructed a guide to the many and varied downturns: An Illustrated History of Bitcoin Crashes to guide you through them.

However, there is one subject that few people touch on. And that is the volume of real-world (ie, not speculative) transactions that are *cough* legally problematic, and the impact that will have on Bitcoin’s future.

Buying drugs, weapons, or other contraband are all possible with Bitcoin. The most infamous marketplace is Silk Road, an enormous drug marketplace that’s had more column inches than most legit e-commerce startups. It’s also a prime mover in the Bitcoin economy to which few sites can compare.

What would it mean for Bitcoin if Silk Road...

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The ruling came out of a case in which the Securities and Exchange Commission has charged Trendon Shavers with running a Bitcoin Ponzi scheme–but since Bitcoins aren’t real-life securities (i.e., backed by the U.S. government), the SEC can’t sue him.

Bullshit, says the judge:

“It is clear that Bitcoin can be used as money. It can be used to purchase goods or services, and as Shavers stated, used to pay for individual living expenses. … Therefore, Bitcoin is a currency or form of money, and investors wishing to invest in [Shavers’ company] provided an investment of money.”

That puts Bitcoin firmly on the road to government-respected currency–which means the G-men will probably attempt to regulate it. What happens if they do?

What made Bitcoin attractive was its independent value decoupled from governmental regulation. But as Bloomberg’s Timothy Lavin points out, this case (which the SEC is now citing in its press release warning investors of possible...

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Ransomware is running rampant. The SonicWall GRID Threat Network detected an increase from 3.8 million ransomware attacks in 2015 to 638 million in 2016. According to a Radware report, 49 percent of businesses were hit by a ransomware attack in 2016. Quite often the attacker asks for some amount of cybercurrency – usually Bitcoin – in exchange for providing a decryption key.

One question this raises is whether ransomware attacks would decrease if Bitcoin ceased to exist? Security experts answer that question with a resounding “no”, indicating that cybercriminals would just move on to another anonymous payment method to continue their extortion.

“Getting rid of Bitcoin to stop ransomware would be like the U.S. Government getting rid of $100 bills to try to stop drug dealers from laundering their dirty money. It’s not the right solution. Would it momentarily create a bump in the road for cyber attackers who are making millions off of ransomware? Absolutely, but only for...

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Every time a government sets out to abolish something people like, the well-liked thing moves to where it can’t be stopped. This has happened with prohibition, gambling, the war on drugs and digital piracy. Now it's happening in China, where the government has been trying to crack down on bitcoin.

As part of an effort to control capital outflows, the Chinese central bank required bitcoin exchanges to suspend withdrawals until they could update their compliance systems. Trading on the exchanges took a big hit, but the bitcoin activity resurfaced on less formal over-the-counter venues. Here's a chart showing trading volume at LocalBitcoins, a site where users post “advertisements” -- like on Craigslist -- to buy or sell bitcoin for local currency:

Blocking LocalBitcoins would be no solution, in part because people can use virtual private networks to access it anyway. Also, plenty of trading happens on lesser-known sites and on micro-messaging services such as WeChat and...

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Bitcoin is a digital currency that, in the words of its sponsors, “uses peer-to-peer technology to operate with no central authority or banks.” By its very definition Bitcoin seems well positioned to kill off central banks. Could it? Would it? Should it? Like just about everything else involving finance, the topic of central banks and their potential replacements is complex with valid arguments for and against.

Perspective: Central Banks Play an Important Role

The digital era may be taking aim at central banks, bit it has not yet managed to kill off the trusty Encyclopedia Britannica, so we turn to the venerable reference to learn that central banking can be traced back to Barcelona Spain in 1401. The first central bank, and those that followed in its wake, often helped nations fund wars and other government-supported initiatives.

The English refined the concept of central banking in 1844 with the Bank Charter Act, a legislative effort that laid the groundwork...

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One of the hottest topics in the Bitcoin world as of late is the BitLicense regulatory framework. Both Bitcoin companies and virtual currency enthusiasts are affected by these guidelines, especially when it comes to selling Bitcoin to a third party.

In theory, everyone selling Bitcoin to other users, including sellers active on the LocalBitcoins platform, should apply for an individual BitLicense. It is quite clear this regulatory framework was created with one single thought: destroying Bitcoin innovation in its early stages.

[tweet_box design=”default”]New York state officials want to centralize the decentralization aspect of people involved with Bitcoin and other virtual currencies.[/tweet_box]

Costing way too much and invading customer privacy

The two biggest gripes nearly everyone in the Bitcoin community has with the BitLicense requirements are both the costs and the invasion of customer privacy associated with becoming compliant. Every Bitcoin...

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Toronto programmer Vitalik Buterin was just a kid and 17 when he started getting involved with Bitcoin. Now 20, he’s created a Bitcoin competing cryptocurrency called Ethereum. Bitcoin (and other cryptocurrencies) make it possible to send and receive money outside of the traditional banking system. Well Ethereum wants to take it a step further by making it possible to set up binding contracts outside of the legal system. In addition to its virtual currency called Ether, Ehtereum includes a programming language that makes it possible to encode binding agreements embedded in the same transaction on the ledger.

Sometime in the next few weeks Ethereum will reveal this version of its software that includes a scripting language that’s Turing complete, meaning it’s as expressive as languages like C, Java, and Python. Users will be able to encode automated contracts in that language, essentially represented by bots that can send and receive Ether currency when certain conditions are...

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With all due honour to Betteridge’s Law, that states that any opinion square title that is a yes/no doubt will constantly be answered no, a answer is… no.

MasterCard Send is a new use that will concede label holders to send money, domestically and internationally, now for low cost. Currently operational in a US, a use will concede both banked and unbanked people to get payments by deposits to their credit cards, bank accounts, or to remuneration agents.

This use would seem to be a approach plea to a arise of practical currencies like Bitcoin and competence in fact be desirous by them. Here are some ways a use will tumble short:

The use is mostly being marketed to businesses, presumably as a roll-out strategy, though also presumably display a fear of creation a use generally accessible. Though income competence be collected from certified income exchanges if a target doesn’t have a bank, it’s misleading if a chairman promulgation a income will need to be banked....
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In what will come as welcome relief to bitcoin adopters in the country, Japan is set to end its 8% ‘consumption tax rate’ imposed on buyers of bitcoin through digital currency exchanges.

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Japan is now looking to end the sales-tax collection on transactions related to purchases of virtual currencies like bitcoin, come spring.

A report from Japanese publication the Nikkei Asian Review reported that discussions between the Japanese Financial Ministry and the country’s Financial Agency this year is expected to end in a formal decision by the end of the year. A ruling-coalition tax panel will join the talks, with the decision expected to be one in favor of bitcoin and cryptocurrencies.

Japan is the sole economy among the seven major industrialized nations in the world to tax bitcoin buying. Discussions to end the tax began earlier this year when a member of...

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W

ith the mainstream media getting it wrong, and financial sites like

+CNNMoney

outright lying about what's going on, I thought it might be good to tell it like it is. This will be in standard FAQ format.

Bitcoin is dying right?

No. In fact it's shooting up in value as we speak. When I started typing this it was at 556 dollars a piece. Now it's at (let me check) 561.

But but but, the guy on TV said it's dying. He said MtGox is dying and it's killing bitcoin?

That's because the guy on TV is either an ignorant dick, or they are in the back pocket of "big money" or both. MtGox was one exchange out of very very many. Assuming its death would "kill bitcoin" would be like assuming a bank up the street closing would kill the US dollar.

What happened with MtGox?

Simply put, very poor security practices. Bitcoin has a procedure for verifying transactions. Better exchanges (not MtGox) verify all transactions. MtGox did not. This...

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A screenshot of the warning screen from a purported ransomware attack on a laptop in Beijing. Mark Schiefelbein/AP hide caption

toggle caption Mark Schiefelbein/AP

A screenshot of the warning screen from a purported ransomware attack on a laptop in Beijing.

Mark Schiefelbein/AP

Cops have a decent shot at catching run-of-the-mill online scammers — say, the guy selling a car that's just too good to be true on Craigslist. But catching ransomware attackers is generally much more difficult — unless they slip up.

The criminals behind the "WannaCry" ransomware attack may have done just that. Experts are now seeing some amateur flaws emerging including an easy-to-find kill switch and the unsophisticated way the attackers are demanding bitcoin from their victims.

Ransomware "tends to be a crime that is born on the Internet, born through kits sold on the...

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May 11, 2017

Dark Web “Kill Order Contract” On President Donald Trump Issued For $150 Million

By: Sorcha Faal, and as reported to her Western Subscribers

A stunning Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR) report circulating in the Kremlin today states that after yesterday’s meeting between Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, Ambassador Sergey Kislyak and President Donald Trump, a “kill order contract” against America’s new leader appeared on the “dark web” offering a payment of 82,900 Bitcoin’s for Trump’s “murder/killing” by the end of...

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