200,000 Unconfirmed Transactions Pile Up in Another Crazy Day for Bitcoin

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200,000 Unconfirmed Transactions Pile Up in Another Crazy Day for Bitcoin

Exchanges overloaded. DDoS attacks. Huge price spikes, flash crashes, and order cancellations. Over 200k transactions queued, some for more than 24 hours, in the mempool – despite paying high fees. Just another crazy day in bitcoin, a land where every day seems to be wilder than the last, including higher highs, bigger swings, and record-breaking numbers across the board.

Also read: Yahoo Finance App Users Can Now Track Their Bitcoin Balance at Coinbase

Are You Not Entertained?

200,000 Unconfirmed Transactions Pile Up in Another Crazy Day for BitcoinAmidst all the frenzy over the price of bitcoin, it’s easy to overlook its use as a means of exchange that hundreds of thousands of people rely on. The digital currency’s dollar value has grabbed most of the headlines, but behind the scenes there’s been another story: one of a huge backlog that’s seen bitcoin become temporarily non-transactable.

Within the last 24 hours, total bitcoin trading volume has neared $29 billion, a five-fold increase on the same time last month. Bitcoin trading on exchanges doesn’t impact on the blockchain itself because all of the action takes place off-chain. Nevertheless, the record demand for the cryptocurrency and huge trading volume indirectly takes its toll, as users wait to send money in and out of exchanges. If bitcoin mania continues at its current rate, it won’t be long before the 24-hour trading volume exceeds the $50 billion daily average set by the New York Stock Exchange.

200,000 Unconfirmed Transactions Pile Up in Another Crazy Day for Bitcoin

Bitcoin Up, Everything Else Down

In the last 12 hours, virtually every single altcoin has been in the red as the flight to bitcoin has intensified. It’s not just altcoins that have been down however: so have many of the exchanges that list them. Coinbase – where bitcoin soared to almost $20,000 at one stage – went offline on December 7, as its engineers continued to wrestle with the problem of how to scale a site which is a victim of its own success.

200,000 Unconfirmed Transactions Pile Up in Another Crazy Day for Bitcoin
Coinbase bitcoin trading, December 7.

Bitcoin has certainly kept the pundits busy this week, with mainstream media scrambling to obtain soundbites on where the virtual currency’s at, where it’s headed, and what comes next. Former hedge fund manager James Cramer perhaps put it best on CNBC:

I don’t want to talk about when the party is going to be over because maybe the thing is going to Mars. Maybe the thing is going to Jupiter.

Meanwhile, Royal Bank of Scotland chairman Howard Davies was dismissing the whole thing as “irrational exuberance” and urging exchanges to defer introducing futures trading. His sentiments were drowned out, however, by the crackle of popcorn as the bitcoin rocket put more distance between itself and humanity.

Transactions Are Drowning in the Mempool

Earlier this week, bitcoiners had an opportunity to laugh at ethereum, whose mempool has been clogged by the viral success of Crypto Kitties, which has now taken in $6.7 million and sent gas fees to record highs. On Thursday it was bitcoin’s turn to experience a mega backlog due to the viral success of bitcoin. Despite paying “fast” fees of $7, many users complained of seeing their transactions sat unconfirmed in the mempool for 24 hours or more. Fees of as much as $32 have been reported however. “F*** you bitcoin” as one reddit user pithily put it. Elsewhere, r/bitcoin barreled past half a million users, r/btc shot past 100k, and Bitcoin Core began trending on Github as the bitcoin frenzy permeated every corner of the web.

Strange Exchanges

200,000 Unconfirmed Transactions Pile Up in Another Crazy Day for BitcoinBitstamp is normally the most conservative exchange when it comes to the price of bitcoin, but for a while today it was Bitfinex which lagged behind, with the currency trading at significantly less than on other exchanges. The wildly diverging price of bitcoin on major exchanges created huge arbitrage opportunities theoretically, but in practice no one was able to benefit from them due to the mempool being clogged.

Bitfinex has been subjected to a spate of alleged DDoS attacks over the past week, and today was no different. GDAX, meanwhile, was knocked offline for a while, but not before bitcoin was fleetingly trading on there for $3,000 more than on Bitfinex. Elsewhere, Korean buyers have been paying a premium of over 20% for bitcoin, it’s been reported.

Bitcoin Markets Push the Cryptocurrency's Value to $12,000As the price of bitcoin has rocketed, accelerating sharply since the start of November, there’s been a growing consensus that the currency is best used as a sort of savings account rather than a means of purchase. One place where bitcoin is still relied on for buying and selling, however, is the darknet. Users on r/darknetmarkets complained, like everyone else, of transactions sitting unconfirmed for 15 hours or more. While the general public wants a slice of the digital gold rush, all the deep web’s longstanding users want is a little something for the weekend. Like everyone else, they’re going to have to wait.

Have you experienced issues sending or receiving bitcoin this week? Let us know in the comments section below.

Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Johoe’s Mempool, and Blockchain.info.

Keep track of the bitcoin exchange rate in real-time.

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Bitcoin Gamers Dropped from Steam Due to Fees and Volatility

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Bitcoin Gamers Dropped from Steam due to Fees and Volatility

Citing price volatility and transaction fees, Steam, the popular online gaming platform, is out of the bitcoin business effective 6 December. The world’s most popular cryptographic currency is ripping all economic textbooks apart, reaching price highs unimaginable just weeks, if not hours, ago. That, and a congested mempool with transacting costs to compound, means a significant source for bitcoiners’ amusement is now a thing of the past. 

Also read: World Bitcoin Community Showers the Great Explainer Antonopoulos With Love and $700,000+

Bitcoin Gamers Dropped from Steam due to Fees and Volatility

Steam Is No Longer Supporting Bitcoin

A division of Valve Corporation, a Pacific Northwest US video game developer, the company has been around for more than a decade. It ranks routinely on Alexa in the top 200 sites in the world. It is the largest gaming retailer of its kind in the US and Europe.
“These fees result in unreasonably high costs for purchasing games when paying with Bitcoin. The high transaction fees cause even greater problems when the value of Bitcoin itself drops dramatically,” the post complained.
Steam began accepting bitcoin back in Spring of 2016 in conjunction with Bitpay.
Bitcoin Gamers Dropped from Steam due to Fees and Volatility

 25% Loss of Value is an Untenable Situation

“Historically,” the explanatory post continues, “the value of Bitcoin has been volatile, but the degree of volatility has become extreme in the last few months, losing as much as 25% in value over a period of days.”
Indeed, price spiking can complicate matters. If transactions are not confirmed within certain windows of time, very often it can be the case the initial amount doesn’t cover. That, and then there is the process of notifying the customer, resettling accounts, and added transaction fees. It’s a cycle bound to frustrate customers and to bog down merchants, an awful combination for commerce.
“This year, we’ve seen increasing number of customers get into this state,” the company noted. “At this point, it has become untenable to support Bitcoin as a payment option. We may re-evaluate whether Bitcoin makes sense for us and for the Steam community at a later date.”
Though a setback for bitcoiners who game, it is a feather in the cap of those who continually point to bitcoin’s increasing frictions and evidence that bitcoin might be coming “too valuable” to use.
Legacy payment systems from the traditional banking industry will undoubtedly point to Steam as a prime example of why their services last. And, at the very least, competitors can be sure to swipe a number of customers away by accepting bitcoin.

What do you think of Steam’s decision? Are high fees and volatility reason enough to bow out of bitcoin? 

Images courtesy of Pixabay, Steam

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The Obvious Bitcoin Christmas Gift Guide 2017

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The Ultimate Bitcoin Christmas Gift Guide 2017

It’s that time of year again when thoughts turn to all the cool swag you’ll receive on Christmas Day, and hand out of course, cos’ let’s not forget that Xmas is also about giving. Whether you’re an experienced bitcoiner seeking gift ideas for one of your own, or a complete novice cursed with a crypto crazy nephew, the following guide covers all bases, price brackets, and payment types. Hand your loved one a bitcoin-branded gift this Christmas and watch their face light up like a green trading candle breaking out.

Also read: More Bitcoin Fork Clones on the Way: Bitcoin God Will Be Born Xmas Day

Take a Little, Give a Lot

The Ultimate Bitcoin Christmas Gift Guide 2017Should any of the entries on this list prove too darn irresistible, by all means treat yourself. You’re entitled to a reward for all the hodling you did this year while your mates were rinsing their hard-earned on holidays, designer threads, and vice. Just remember that there’s more happiness in giving than receiving.

To get the ball rolling, we’ll start with a practical selection of gifts for bitcoiners. The decadent and downright silly stuff comes later. If the following suggestions don’t sate your thirst for gift ideas, incidentally, our Christmas guide from last year is also rocking.

Practical Bitcoin Christmas Gifts

If your favorite bitcoin obsessive doesn’t already have one, give them a hardware wallet for safely storing their cryptocurrency. We’re wallet agnostic, but market leaders Trezor and Ledger are both excellent choices. There’s also Keepkey.

The Ultimate Bitcoin Christmas Gift Guide 2017

Gift-Wrapped Computer Tech

Pretty much any piece of computer gear can be branded as bitcoin-ready, but the following suggestions all have specific applications. If you’re tech-savvy enough to pick out the right product for your beloved bitcoiner, try these for size:

The Ultimate Bitcoin Christmas Gift Guide 2017
“Coming mom. Just checking my doge.”

Computer monitor: A second screen for watching cryptocurrencies pumping and dumping in realtime is sure to go down well.

Hard drive: Cryptocurrency hobbyists interested in running a node or downloading a full wallet client are gonna need somewhere to store the blockchain. A few extra GB – or even TB – will be welcomed.

Cellphone: Another practical (if unexciting) gift is a cheap cellphone that can be stashed in a safe place and used for 2FA access and email verification when signing into exchanges. If their Twitter bio says “crypto trader” – regardless of the reality – a second cell will secure their bags by reducing the risk of SMS porting, among other things.

Gifts for Cryptocurrency Lovers Who’ve Strayed to the Dark Side

The Ultimate Bitcoin Christmas Gift Guide 2017At news.Bitcoin.com we’re all about bitcoin – the clue’s in the name. If your relative has strayed to the dark side, however, and developed an affinity for ethereum, you could load their wallet with a pick and mix of ERC20 tokens (the good ones, not the vaporware) or even splurge on, dare we say it, a Crypto Kitty. Better still, buy them bitcoin and tell them to come to their senses.

Which leads us onto our most practical suggestion. If there’s one thing that all bitcoiners would dearly love for Christmas, it’s more bitcoin. One bitcoin doesn’t come cheap, but with each coin divisible into a million units, you can purchase as modest an amount as your means will permit. If you’re gifting them a hardware wallet, load some BTC on it if you’re feeling generous. Alternatively, a paper wallet provides a tangible gift they can unwrap. This option is ideal for bitcoin virgins: just tell them to stash it in a safe place and dig it out a few years later.

The Ultimate Bitcoin Christmas Gift Guide 2017

Novelty Bitcoin Gifts

We covered most of these in our recent Black Friday roundup, so we’ll just state that there are some excellent tees, mugs, posters, and games to be had at sites such as Decentraland and Red Bubble which would make great stocking fillers. Naturally, these vendors stock hordes of pun-tastic Xmas crypto sweaters. Do a search for “bitcoin” on Etsy and you’ll also come up with a treasure trove of themed crafts, kitsch, and bric-a-brac.

Naughty Bitcoin Gifts

We hear there are some fine wares to be found on the deep web and its P2P counterpart Openbazaar. You know: ebooks and badges and suchlike. Least, that’s the word on the street.

The Ultimate Bitcoin Christmas Gift Guide 2017

Luxury Bitcoin Gifts

From the ridiculous to the sublime, there’s a wide selection of extravagant gifts that can be bought with bitcoin. If you’re a bitcoin maximalist who refuses to dabble in fiat currency, drop a few coins on the following items and you’ll be flavor of the week and uncle of the year come Christmas morning.

The Ultimate Bitcoin Christmas Gift Guide 2017

The White Company, “purveyors of luxury to the cryptocurrency world”, will hook you up with everything from sports cars to Rolexes, all of which can be paid for anonymously in cryptocurrency and delivered anywhere in the world. There’s also the option of a year’s unlimited flights courtesy of Surf Air and some extremely chic bitcoin watches from Cryptomatic including “The HODLER”.

Experiential Bitcoin Gifts

According to behavioral science, experiences make people happier than stuff. Instead of treating your bitcoin beloved to yet another gadget or gizmo, why not purchase them an experience they’ll remember fondly for a long time? The White Company will furnish you with a luxury trip to the Monaco Grand Prix, where you can watch the race from a VIP yacht, while Crypto Cribs is Airbnb for the bitcoin generation. Gift your partner a week in a city they’ve always dreamed of visiting, all paid for in the digital currency of the present and future.

Will you be spending or gifting any bitcoin this Christmas? Let us know in the comments section below.

Images courtesy of Shutterstock.

Readers should do their own due diligence before taking any actions related to the mentioned company or any of its affiliates or services. Bitcoin.com is not responsible, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on any content, goods or services mentioned in this article.

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Fintech and Crypto Regulations Expected to Pass in Mexico on December 15th

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Fintech and Crypto Regulations Expected to Pass in Mexico on December 15th

On Tuesday, Mexico’s Senate passed a bill designed to regulate the country’s emerging fintech sector, including regulatory provisions pertaining to bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies in Mexico. 

Also Read: Bank of Mexico Rejects ‘Virtual Currency’ as Legal Classification for Bitcoin

The Fintech Bill Is Expected to Pass a Final Lower House Vote by December 15 in Mexico

Fintech and Crypto Regulations Expected to Pass in Mexico on December 15thMexico’s upper chamber of parliament has approved a bill that will provide a regulatory framework governing the organization and operations of fintech companies. The bill will seek to regulate companies offering alternative means of financing or investing, companies that issue or manage electronic funds or assets, in addition to providing guidelines for the operation of virtual currency exchanges.

If passed into law, the bill will bring virtual currency exchanges under the regulatory purview of Mexico’s central bank. The regulations will seek to impose strict identification requirements for both clients and investors in order to deter money laundering or terrorist financing activities, and will prohibit Financial Technology Institutions (FTIs) from guaranteeing returns on investments, or the success of an investment. Mexico defines ‘crowdfunding institutions’, ‘electronic payment institutions,’ and ‘virtual asset management institutions’ as FTIs.

The new laws will mandate that FTIs seeking to operate in Mexico must incorporate as a Mexican corporation or limited liability company. FTIs will also be required to demonstrate the transactions that it wishes to perform to the National Banking and Securities Commission (CNBV), that the company has a suitable corporate structure and governance bodies, and that the companies are in possession of all requisite resources and infrastructure. FTIs currently operating in Mexico will be required to receive authorization from the CNBV in order to continue operating.

Innovative Companies and Regulatory Sandboxes

Fintech and Crypto Regulations Expected to Pass in Mexico on December 15thMexico is expected to adopt regulatory sandboxes in order to facilitate innovation in innovative industries that do not neatly fit within existing legislation. Companies seeking to operate under a regulatory sandbox will be required to obtain temporary authorization for two years maximum, during which the company will be permitted to provide their services to a small number of clients. It is anticipated that numerous companies seeking to operate using cryptocurrencies will likely apply to be regulated in said “sandbox” fashion.

The bill will also spark the creation of a ‘Fintech Council,’ which will be seen as a vehicle through which the public and private sector can exchange relevant ideas and interests relating to breakthrough financial technologies. The council will be staffed by individuals from both the public and private sector, and will be expected to follow emerging trends and practices in innovative fintech industries in order to inform the development of future regulations.

Speaking with Reuters, Felipe Vallejo of Mexican crypto trading platform, Bitso, has welcomed the Senate’s passing of the bill – describing such as having the potential to make Mexico internationally competitive within the emerging cryptocurrency industries. “For us, it was a victory for the sector, because this is being done internationally,” Mr. Vallejo said.

Do you think that Mexico will be able to exert a position of influence over the bitcoin markets in future? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!

Images courtesy of Shutterstock

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PR: Privacy Coin Ditcoin Launches It’s ICO

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Privacy Coin Ditcoin

This is a paid press release, which contains forward looking statements, and should be treated as advertising or promotional material. Bitcoin.com does not endorse nor support this product/service. Bitcoin.com is not responsible for or liable for any content, accuracy or quality within the press release.

Ditcoin is the first business driven cryptocurrency based on asset and community building. Its coin DTC guarantees 100% untraceable transactions, perfect for people who wants better privacy, yet with the lowest fees. Ditcoin’s ICO is about to end, so, take the opportunity of joining our project and become a part of our great success!

Individuals outside of the cryptocurrency industry generally don’t know how to utilize Blockchain, so, DitCoin has come up with an application that they can use as a mobile account to top up cryptocurrencies. This initiative of DitCoin in bridging the gap between individuals outside cryptocurrency and the cryptocurrency world itself will result to an increase number of people supporting this project.

In Ditcoin, everyone is assured that they will get the BEST among all of its products and services. All efforts are made to bring the project at the paramount of its success. Thus, the project, now, is on the process of listing Ditcoin on the following exchanges- Binance, Poloniex, YObit.net, Livecoin and Bittrex.

Listing in these exchanges will prove how this project commits to give the perfect service among its valued investors. People will surely be amazed when Ditcoin hits the market, for it possesses great potential of growth and development. Being listed in some of the reputed exchanges means that your investment in Ditcoin will in its good advantage.

Another good news about Ditcoin project is the expansion of its community. Now, the final process is happening for ditcoin.io to take over ditcoin.co. Whereas, Ditcoin.co will serve as the official cloud mining and lending site for ditcoin.io and all accounts in ditcoin.co will still be valid.

Furthermore, the blockchain lending pioneer MicroMoney will now support DitCoin’s ICO. The two companies have common goals of using FinTech to develop the existing banking system and this have been a good opportunity for both parties to enter into partnership. The growing network and linkages of Ditcoin is undeniably increasing. We can’t wait for more opportunities ahead but we’re certain that it’s going to be the BEST!

As of the moment of this writing, the ICO sales is 77% and counting, so, investors should take this opportunity to buy more DITCOIN and get 10% bonus. The estimated value of DTC after ICO will really break your jaw because it is projected that 2 months after ICO the price of DTC will be reach 10$ to 15$, after another 2 months it will be $15 to $30, and after 2018 it is expected to be $100. The growth tendency of this project is beyond average due to the efforts and commitment done by all developers, teams and management.

Lastly, the whole community applauded this project for the integration of Ditcoin in SkyGold Advertising & E-commerce Services Business. Whereas, SkyGold will accept DTC as a mode of payment for all products and services offered; like hotel accommodation, coffee shop, music bar, restaurant, super market and many more. The business establishment will be located at Angeles and San Fernando Pampanga, Philippines. Hence, DITCOIN will be your all in one cryptocurrency for your leisure and basic needs.

Investors and traders should never miss this chance so visit now our website at https://ditcoin.io to participate and buy more Ditcoin. You can also check our Facebook page http://ift.tt/2i95OHA for more exciting updates:

Cheers for DITCOIN’S success everyone!

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This is a paid press release. Readers should do their own due diligence before taking any actions related to the promoted company or any of its affiliates or services. Bitcoin.com is not responsible, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on any content, goods or services mentioned in the press release.

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Yahoo Finance App Users Can Now Track Their Bitcoin Balance at Coinbase

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Yahoo Finance App Users Can Now Track Their Bitcoin Balance at Coinbase

With exchange-traded bitcoin futures almost here, cryptocurrencies are becoming popular mainstream investment instruments in the eyes of many. As such, every trading and investing service must give its clients exposure to bitcoin in order to stay relevant. The latest company to jump on the bandwagon is Yahoo, offering its users new ways to track their cryptfolios.

Also read: Apple Pay Cash Launches as Users and Developers Turn to Bitcoin

Yahoo Finance Cryptocurrency

Yahoo Finance App Users Can Now Track Their Bitcoin Balance at CoinbaseYahoo Finance has added a new cryptocurrency section to its service last week. The economic news portal’s 75 million monthly users can now follow the performance of bitcoin and over 100 altcoins right on the popular platform.

The new offering includes frequently updated prices, market caps, trading volumes, historical data, charts, profiles, and a heat map powered by Crypto Compare. It even adds a comments section for Yahoo’s many trolls to spew off.

Coinbase Integration

Yahoo Finance App Users Can Now Track Their Bitcoin Balance at CoinbaseBeyond just checking how the cryptocurrency markets are doing generally, Yahoo is also starting to cooperate with companies in the industry to give users direct access to their data. Yesterday Coinbase announced that its users can now view their balances directly on Yahoo Finance’s iOS and Android applications.

The company commented: “This integration is yet another sign of large consumer brands responding to increasing demand from consumers for digital currencies. As awareness of this new asset class and technology grows, Yahoo Finance is making it easier for Coinbase users to stay on top of latest information thanks to their integration with Coinbase.”

Do you need Yahoo’s help to obsessively check on the value of your bitcoin every minute? Tell us what you think in the comments section below.

Images courtesy of Shutterstock.

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China’s Official Press Agency: 107 Altcoins Under Investigation for Financial Crimes

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China’s Official Press Agency: 107 Altcoins Under Investigation for Financial Crimes

This week China’s official press agency Xinhua news reported that nationwide public security authorities have cracked down on 107 forms of knock-off altcoins in 2017. These coins claim themselves fintech products, but are large-scale Ponzi schemes in disguise, according to the authorities.

Also Read: Over 10,000 People Have Downloaded Fake Cryptocurrency Apps

“Zero Risk, High Returns”

As bitcoin price rallies hard, a growing number of “Fintech” altcoins join the race in the cryptocurrency industry. Zhao Shouguo, an economics professor at Northwest University in Xi’an, believes that the government’s ruling on ICOs this September has proved to be another case of “people get what they want”.

The ban on ICOs and closure of exchanges for mainstream virtual currencies created a market vacuum and gave rise to various knock-off cryptocurrencies. Scheme suspects would tell investors that mainstream cryptocurrencies are losing traction because of the ban and it’s their time to shine.

Xinhua news journalists searched the keyword “coin” on social media tools like Wechat and QQ (a popular communication tool of Tencent), only to find multiple closed altcoin groups like “HBB Environmental Protection Coin”, “Radar Coin(VBC)”, “Red Shell Coin(RSS)”. Group moderators would show newcomers snapshots of their high returns to induce them to invest. “Enroll five participants, you can get 600 yuan (90 USD), even a beggar can do this job,” a group moderator promises.

Huang Zhen, a law professor at Central University of Finance and Economics, explained that more schemes are emerging because it’s cheap and easy to duplicate an altcoin.

 Obscure Cryptocurrencies Become a Trendy Fraud

China’s Official Press Agency: Public Security Organs Investigate 107 Forms of Knock-off Altcoins for Financial Crimes
Chinese investor Chen lost 1 million yuan in Onecoin

As of the end of September 30, Chinese public security departments have conducted 5,900 criminal cases on Ponzi schemes that have raised more than 30 billion yuan (4.5 billion USD), among which knock-off cryptocurrencies have become a trendy fraud. Police have investigated 107 obscure cryptocurrencies including “Five Elements Coin”, “Onecoin” and “Ticcoin”. Xinhua news journalists revealed that these pyramid schemes used such new concepts as virtual currency and blockchain to confuse investors.

China’s Official Press Agency: Public Security Organs Investigate 107 Forms of Knock-off Altcoins for Financial Crimes
Creator of five elements coin Song was arrested

This January, a Chinese woman surnamed Yang invested all of her savings in “Five Elements Coin” without her husband’s knowledge. Not only that, she successfully convinced ten of her relatives to buy it. “They told me that the project is supported by the central government to promote technological innovation,” says Yang. “And they promised my investment will soon become 4 million yuan (about 606K USD).” Not surprisingly, her venture into the virtual currency market ended up being a scam. To compound her sorrow, her husband divorced her when he realized that she already spent all of their savings.

47,000 Participants and 613 Million USD in a Year

Police in Haikou, capital of Hainan Province busted a pyramid scheme called “Asia-Euro Coin”. Within a year, more than 47,000 people had been recruited to trade the fake virtual currency, with some 613 million U.S. dollars involved. The suspect surnamed Liu told investors that he is a cryptocurrency expert who has resources all over the world. And he would hold events at fancy restaurants to brainwash participants.

With the spread of mobile banking and social media platforms, ponzi schemes could quickly pull-in more investors. “As the perpetrators are often located in different parts of China and orchestrate the scams via computers and mobile phones, it’s quite difficult to detain all at once and secure the evidence,” said Ren Jian, a police officer in Haikou.

Have you ever been swindled in a scam altcoin? Leave your comments below!

Images via Shutterstock, Xinhua News.

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Bitcoin Price Reaches Another Peak Crossing $15,000

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Bitcoin Price Reaches Another Peak Crossing $15,000

On December 7, at 9 am EDT the price of bitcoin broke a new record as one BTC is now worth US$15,000 across global exchanges. Bitcoin trade volume has been exponential with over $14.7Bn BTC being swapped on trading platforms worldwide.

Also read: Peer-to-Peer Bitcoiner Gets Year in Prison for Being Unlicensed

Bitcoin Reaches $15,000 Commanding a $250Bn Market Cap

The price of bitcoin has been on a tear over the past week and even more so during the past three days. In the last 72-hours, the price has moved over $3,000 in gains, and markets are showing feverish buy support. On December 6 when the price tackled $13K and then $14K, a large portion of volume stemmed from South Korean exchanges, most notably Bithumb. The KRW volume has dropped a touch, and the EUR has gained some significant steam. However, the Japanese yen still dominates bitcoin’s global markets at 47 percent. The top exchange today trading the most BTC is Bitfinex, as Bithumb has settled back into the second position. Following the Korean exchange is GDAX, Bitflyer, and Coinone. On Bitstamp, one bitcoin is roughly around $15,200 at the time of writing.

Bitcoin Price Reaches Another Peak Crossing $15,000
Bitcoin trade volume among global exchanges has been over $14.7Bn in the past 24-hours.

Technical Indicators

Looking at charts show the price has been extremely volatile with large swings over the course of the past 24-hours. The two Simple Moving Averages (SMA) still have a nice gap, but the 100 SMA and 200 SMA look as though they are getting closer. This indicates some sell-off may happen soon. Order books show massive resistance beginning at $15,300 all the way to $15,700. If bulls persist in breaking these zones, then the price could go upward even more at warp speed. Again since our last price report, charts indicate that buy walls are much thinner than the sell wall side. Which means the price could slide downwards with ease, and not much resistance on the way down. At press time there’s a strong foundation around $13,400.

Bitcoin Price Reaches Another Peak Crossing $15,000
The price of bitcoin surpassed $15,000 per BTC across global exchanges on December 7, 2017, at 9 am EDT.

The Verdict

Bitcoin proponents are either super happy or extremely skeptical as a fast run up like this one is causing some concern for a deep correction. Some bitcoin proponents believe the time has “finally come” and bitcoin is cementing itself into history. Others believe the decentralized currency has passed through a phase of maturity and is searching for its “fair market price.” Then there’s those speaking the word “bubble” regularly, and they expect bitcoin and cryptocurrency markets, in general, to burst at the seams.

Then there are those who think institutional money is coming into bitcoin due to the upcoming futures markets coming shortly from Cboe, CME Group, and other firms that have expressed interest. Whatever is driving this demand is causing individuals to buy up bitcoin at the highest price it’s been all year. And $15K per bitcoin is quite the feat! 

Where do you see the price of bitcoin heading from here? Let us know in the comments below.

Disclaimer: Bitcoin price articles and markets updates are intended for informational purposes only and should not to be considered as trading advice. Neither Bitcoin.com nor the author is responsible for any losses or gains, as the ultimate decision to conduct a trade is made by the reader. Always remember that only those in possession of the private keys are in control of the “money.”

Images courtesy of: Shutterstock, Bitstamp, Pixabay, and Crypto Compare.

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Surveys Show South Korea Ahead of Japan and US in Bitcoin Awareness

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Surveys Show South Korea Ahead of Japan and US in Bitcoin Awareness

Recent public surveys in Korea, Japan, and the US reveal different levels of bitcoin awareness and adoption in the three top bitcoin markets. The country with the strongest awareness has the fewest bitcoin exchanges and least volume of the three.

Also read: Japan Increases Lead – Approves Another Four New Cryptocurrency Exchanges

90% Know of Bitcoin

Mobile phone survey specialist Dooit released the results of its “Perception and Prospects for Bitcoin” survey taken in South Korea this week, local publications reported. The survey was conducted between December 1 and 4, with 3018 participants aged 20 or older. The sampling error range was ± 1.78% percentage points, giving it a 95% confidence level, according to the company.

Surveys Show South Korea Ahead of Japan and US in Bitcoin AwarenessRegarding respondents’ familiarity with bitcoin, 44.1% of those surveyed said, “I have heard the name.” 35.1% said “I know [it]” and 10.8% answered, “I know [it] well.” Meanwhile, 10% replied, “I do not know [it] at all.” Altogether, the number of respondents who have heard of bitcoin amounts to 90%.

In terms of demographics, bitcoin is most popular among respondents in their 30s. 29.8% of this age group admitted to having purchased the digital currency. By comparison, 26.3% in their 40s, 22.4% in their 20s, and 23% in their 50s claim to have experience in purchasing bitcoin.

Surveys Show South Korea Ahead of Japan and US in Bitcoin AwarenessSouth Korea is one of the largest cryptocurrency markets. The Korean won is currently the third most traded currency for bitcoin, behind only Japan and the U.S. The country’s largest bitcoin exchange Bithumb currently has the highest bitcoin trading volume out of all exchanges worldwide.

Bitcoin trading volume in the country has fully surpassed that of Kosdaq, the Korean version of the Nasdaq stock exchange. This revelation has prompted the regulators in the country to hurry to regulate the crypto market. In addition, the country’s most popular chat app, Kakao Talk, has recently integrated a cryptocurrency exchange called Upbit with over 110 cryptocurrencies. Kakao Talk has over 200 million users and is installed on over 95% of smartphones in South Korea.

8% Know What a Blockchain Is

Surveys Show South Korea Ahead of Japan and US in Bitcoin AwarenessWhile most of the survey respondents know what bitcoin is, few of them have heard of blockchains. Only 8% claim to know both what a blockchain is and understand its relationship with bitcoin.

The majority of the respondents, 49.7%, admitted that “I do not know what it means at all” when asked about the term blockchain.

Some of them were able to make guesses regarding the technology. 18.5% think that both bitcoin and blockchains “are virtual currency” while 6.7% believe that a blockchain is “the product derived from bitcoin.” Lastly, 5.1% wrongfully guessed that an exchange trading bitcoin is a blockchain.

Reasons for Purchasing Bitcoin

Out of all respondents, 26.1% said that they have purchased bitcoin. This percentage corresponds to 787 people. Respondents who have not purchased it shared various reasons on the company’s website. “Bitcoin, it’s dangerous,” wrote one participant. Another participant shared:

It’s not dangerous, it’s just expensive, so I do not buy it.

Surveys Show South Korea Ahead of Japan and US in Bitcoin AwarenessAmong those who have purchased, 5.8% said that they currently own bitcoin while 20.3% said that they do not.

Also within this group of respondents, 48.3% purchased bitcoin because they are simply curious about digital currencies. A further 23.3% said they purchased it for short-term profit while 15.6% indicated it was for long-term investment. Meanwhile, 12.8% of them purchased bitcoin at the recommendation of others.

Compared to Japan

Surveys Show South Korea Ahead of Japan and US in Bitcoin AwarenessJapan is currently the leader in the cryptocurrency market, with the Japanese yen occupying the largest bitcoin trading market share. The country also made bitcoin a legal method of payment for all goods and services back in April. Since then, bitcoin adoption and merchant adoption there have grown significantly. Recently, news.Bitcoin.com reported on a Japanese survey of 10,000 respondents. 88% of them know what bitcoin is but only 4.7% have purchased it.

Among Japanese bitcoin purchasers, 42% said they purchased because they were interested in digital currencies; the same percentage expect it to grow in the future. 33% bought bitcoin because they believe it to be profitable. 54% purchased it as a long-term investment and 42% as a short-term investment. See full survey results here.

Compared to the US

Surveys Show South Korea Ahead of Japan and US in Bitcoin AwarenessThe U.S. dollar is currently the second largest bitcoin market behind the Japanese yen. On Monday, crypto PR firm Ditto published a cryptocurrency public knowledge report. The firm conducted a survey in the first week of November with 500 respondents over 18 across the U.S.

They found almost 70% of respondents are unfamiliar with cryptocurrencies and almost 90% do now know what an initial coin offering (ICO) is. The most informed segment is the millennials with 1 in 5 of them familiar with bitcoin.

What do you think of these surveys? Let us know in the comments section below.

Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Business Watch, and Ditto.

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Bittrex Customers Locked Out: Are Crypto Exchanges Ready for Bitcoin?

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Bittrex Customers Locked Out: Are Crypto Exchanges Ready for Bitcoin?

Bittrex users took to social media to voice their concerns: something is wrong at the third largest cryptocurrency exchange in the world. Customers openly complain they’re having issues with withdrawals, and this has been going on for weeks. Certainly every popular platform has had its share of problems with runs in the wake of price spikes, but until yesterday the exchange offered no formal, public explanation.  

Also read: Peer-to-Peer Bitcoiner Gets Year in Prison for Being Unlicensed

Bittrex Has a Public Relations Problem

Bittrex hasn’t Tweeted since 30 November. Its Facebook page hasn’t been updated since Summer. Customers are starting to worry, loudly.

Important Information About Identity Verification, published the evening of 5 December, the exchange explained, “We are committed to making sure our services are not used to launder money, support terrorism, commit fraud or other illegal activities,” citing the Bank Secrecy Act and other regulations as catalyst.

Describing their services as “frustrating or a hassle,” the exchange blamed, essentially, lack of customer literacy in the identity verification process. Stressing they “cannot do this without the help of our customers,” the post then lists “common mistakes or issues that arise.”

Included are problems such as “Creating multiple accounts associated with a single individual or entity; Name mismatch; Unreadable IDs; Non-Latin characters on the Government IDs; [and] Opening multiple support tickets.”

Signed by The Team, the post ends: “We trust that you understand Bittrex is committed to following the law and ensuring that it has a robust compliance program. We ask for your patience and cooperation throughout this process.”

Bittrex Customers Locked Out: Are Crypto Exchanges Ready for Bitcoin?

So, Criminals can Deposit but Not Withdraw?

Curious to outsiders, infuriating to customers, is the notion of the exchange taking orders, money, seemingly without issue … only to cover itself in cloaks of legalisms at withdrawal time.

Indeed, a user told Business Insider how “This is a big deal because when you sign up with Bittrex, they allow you to deposit funds into your wallet and even allow you to trade without Verification. But then you cannot withdraw your funds.”

The exchange has been around since 2014, and is based in Las Vegas though its mailing address is Seattle. Its daily trading volumes hover near 1 billion USD. As of this writing, it ranks second in daily volume among exchanges.

Bittrex Customers Locked Out: Are Crypto Exchanges Ready for Bitcoin?

Though not Better Business Bureau (BBB) accredited, Bittrex nevertheless has a dedicated page of mounting complaints. Users have gone public with their stories, and most have documented something like the following, “Last night I tried to withdraw and got this: ‘Unverified account withdraw limit has been reached. Please try again in 24 hours. To increase your limits, please verify your account,’” Russia Today noted. There’s even a Twitter hashtag, #BittrexTrouble.

These are not the first problems for Bittrex, nor are they alone in this regard. Bitcoin’s price, as well as the value of the crypto space generally, has risen beyond expectations. It could just be the case of not being prepared. In these pages, flashes and run-ups were reported at Kraken, Coinbase, Tether, Gemini, among others.

Problems like these are not only worrisome for those unable to access their funds, but they’re also excuses for tighter government controls and regulations. With Wall Street and assorted whales headed crypto’s way in the coming months, readers can be sure such problems will not be tolerated.

As a matter of plain justice, however, in a volatile market, losing precious seconds, much less weeks or months, could literally financially break enthusiasts.

What do you think about exchanges refusing user withdrawals? Tell us in the comments below.

Images via Pixabay, Bittrex. 

Do you like to research and read about Bitcoin technology? Check out Bitcoin.com’s Wiki page for an in-depth look at Bitcoin’s innovative technology and interesting history.

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