Throughout the winter months, there have been endless social media interactions revolving around one thing: Bitcoin. Virtual currency seems to be everywhere at the minute, what actually is bitcoin?
What is the Virtual Currency, Bitcoin?
Bitcoin is a type of virtual currency, which was invented in 2009, by an unknown person who goes by the alias Satoshi Nakamoto. This type of currency differs from forms in the physical world, due to the fact it can be transferred without the need of a third party – like a bank. Because it is only available to be used online, no actual coins or notes exist. It is a form of currency that enables people to trade globally without being controlled.
The actual ‘bitcoin’ is formed from a line of code. Many people like using this form of virtual currency because it provides anonymity.
What is Bitcoin Mining?
‘Mining’ is the way that the number of Bitcoin are increased. Because paper money is controlled by the Government, they decide when to print and distribute it. Bitcoin doesn’t have this control and so, mining is how new bitcoins are created.
It works to ensure the longevity of the Bitcoin system. Originally being designed so the system could have a maximum of 21 million Bitcoin. Miners help in keeping the Bitcoin network secure by adding transaction records to a ledger of previous transactions, which is called a blockchain. The miner then receives a fraction of the Bitcoin as a reward.
You can acquire bitcoin by purchasing bitcoins, exchanging bitcoins or through mining, though you should take precautions to ensure you are protected from scammers.
What is the Value of Bitcoin?
The value of virtual currency is constantly changing, like anything, the value is down to how many people are willing to pay for it. The value of Bitcoin peaked and reached a value of $19,206 in mid December, however now at the beginning of February, the value is just over $8,000. Though the value of the virtual currency continues to be volatile, many people across the globe use it and are obsessed by it.
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