Petro (cryptocurrency)

The petro, or petromoneda,[2] launched in February 2018, is a cryptocurrency developed by the government of Venezuela.[3][4] Announced in December 2017, it is claimed to be backed by the country’s oil and mineral reserves, and it is intended to supplement Venezuela’s plummeting bolívar fuerte currency, purportedly as a means of circumventing U.S. sanctions and accessing international financing.[5]

Contents

  • 1 History
    • 1.1 Launch
    • 1.2 Petro gold
  • 2 Design
    • 2.1 Transactions
    • 2.2 Price and volatility
  • 3 Response
    • 3.1 Legal and governmental
      • 3.1.1 Governments
      • 3.1.2 Others
    • 3.2 Financial
      • 3.2.1 Investment
  • 4 References

History[edit]

Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro announced the petro in a televised address on 3 December 2017, stating that it would be backed by Venezuela’s reserves of oil, gasoline, gold, and diamonds.[6][7]

Maduro stated that the petro would allow Venezuela to “advance in issues of monetary sovereignty”,[8] and that it would make “new forms of international financing” available to the country.[6] Opposition leaders, however, expressed doubt due to Venezuela’s economic turmoil,[7] pointing to the falling value of the Venezuelan bolívar, its fiat currency, and $140 billion in foreign debt.[9]

On January 5, 2018, Maduro announced that Venezuela would issue 100 million tokens of the petro,[10] which would put the value of the entire issuance at just over $6 billion.[11] It also established a cryptocurrency government advisory group called VIBE to act as “an institutional, political and legal base” from which to launch the petro.[2] Carlos Vargas is the “Superintendent of Cryptocurrencies”.[5]

In a document leaked to and reviewed by Reuters, VIBE recommended that the government sell $2.3 billion worth of petros in a private offering at a discount of up to 60%, indicating that “Maduro’s valuation of the nascent petro faces significant market skepticism”, followed by $2.7 billion worth of petros offered to the public a month later, with the remainder “shared between the government and VIBE”. It also suggested that the government accept tax payments in petros as well as allow PDVSA, the country’s state-owned oil company, incorporate cryptocurrencies in its dealings with foreign companies.[12]

Launch[edit]

The petro’s pre-sale started on Feb. 20 at -04:00 UTC and ends at Mar. 19 at -04:00 UTC.[13][14][4] 38.4 million tokens were made available.[citation needed] The white paper of petro initially stated that the currency would be on the Ethereum platform, though later on the launch date the white paper was changed and the platform was to be with NEM.[15] Even after the launch, white papers in various languages still shared conflicting information as to which platform the petro was part of.[15] Due to the unorganized launch by the Venezuelan government, scammers were able to establish their own “petro” currencies on various cryptocurrency platforms, though these schemes did not garnish much success.[15]

Petro gold[edit]

On February 21, 2018, petro gold, a gold-backed cryptocurrency, was announced in a televised speech given by Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro.[16] It was not clear whether the gold backing the tokens would be actual gold reserves or some kind of share of the country’s untapped mineral wealth.[17][18]

Design[edit]

The petro is a token based on the NEM blockchain. The design of the petro by the Venezuelan government has been controversial, with white paper changing by the day even after the petro’s pre-sale.[19] Petros are “pre-mined” by the Venezuelan government, meaning that new tokens cannot be created after the issuance.[5][19] Members of the Venezuelan Ministry of University Education, Science and Technology under advisory of the Russian government allegedly designed the petro to circumvent United States sanctions, with Russian president Vladimir Putin devising official involvement.[1]

Transactions[edit]

During the ICO petros could only be purchased from the Venezuelan government with Russian rubles, Bitcoin, NEM and Ethereum.[20] The minimum required investment to acquire the crypto-asset is 50 euros (or its equivalent) per digital wallet or 1000 euros (or its equivalent) per bank deposits.[21]

Venezuela legally allows and encourages the use of petro for virtually any payment including oil trade, taxes, fees, real estate, gasoline, flights and more[22][23][24].

Price and volatility[edit]

Weiss Cryptocurrency Ratings states that the white paper shows no method as to how the Venezuelan government will base the petro on oil prices, concluding that the currency “is a worthless token”.[25] But according to the white paper, the base price of the petro is equivalent to the price of a single Venezuelan oil barrel: 1 petro = 1 oil barrel. The official Venezuelan oil price is defined by the Venezuelan Ministry of Oil and Mining and the current price of the petro (during the ICO) is referenced on its web page[26].

According to the white paper, national and international licensed exchanges will be able to sell and exchange the petro, allowing the market to define its price[27]. While there is no mechanism to exchange petros for any other currency yet, the government is expected to back each petro with the value of one oil barrel, in Bolivares or other currencies[28]. The Venezuelan government hopes that this system will give the petro a “support price” (one oil barrel), but potentially a higher value, depending on the demand in the market. After the ICO, theoretically, the price of the petro will be determined by two main factors: the Venezuelan official oil price and its performance in the exchanges around the world.

Response[edit]

Legal and governmental[edit]

Governments[edit]

In response to the petro, Venezuela’s National Assembly, headed by the opposition Democratic Unity Roundtable, declared the petro to be an illegal debt issuance by a government desperate for cash, and has said it will not recognize it.[12]

The United States Department of the Treasury warned that participating in Venezuela’s proposed initial coin offering for the petro cryptocurrency could violate U.S. sanctions against Venezuela, because it “would appear to be an extension of credit to the Venezuelan government”.[12] President Donald J. Trump signed an executive order prohibiting transactions in any Venezuelan government-issued cryptocurrency by a United States person or within the United States, effective 19 March 2018.[29][30]

Others[edit]

The Brookings Institution stated that “it is relatively unsurprising that a dictatorship with little reserve currency … has resorted to a deceitful means like introducing the petro … [t]he petro … exists to create foreign currency reserves from thin air”, further explaining that the creation of the petro has tarnished the reputation of cryptocurrencies and that sanctioned countries “might pursue the same fraudulent strategy as Venezuela: create a cryptocurrency tied to a government-controlled asset, raise money in violation of sanctions, and proceed to manipulate that cryptocurrency’s value to maximize profit”.[20]

Financial[edit]

The cryptocurrency community’s response was generally negative. Economist Jean Paul Leidenz expressed concerns that the creation of the petro would encourage further hyperinflation.[2] Economist Steve Hanke stated that the petro was likely to wind up “in the graveyard”.[31] Other analysts point to its government control or centralisation as its greatest weakness.[32] Financial journalist Max Keiser expressed his support in light of the country’s hyperinflation.[33]

According to Bloomberg, the organizations that rank cryptocurrencies have described the petro as a “scam”, with sites like ICOindex, ICObench, Cryptorated and ICOreview giving negative reviews or not even rating the petro due to its status.[34] Initially, from its white paper which was released in January, petro was missing some important information regarding its mechanism to its technology. After a couple of weeks, a new version of the white paper was released which announced a different blockchain platform on which petro would be built. [35]

Investment[edit]

According to the independently-run financial advisory company Weiss Ratings, it does not recognize the petro as a cryptocurrency and instead as a fiat currency. Weiss Ratings further stated that the Venezuelan government lied about pre-launch sales of the petro, with the company using evidence from petro’s blockchain to reveal that the Venezuelan currency “hasn’t raised a dime”.[25]

The Washington Post economic reporter Matt O’Brien said that “The petro might be the most obviously horrible investment ever… The petro is about creating something useless — that’s why only foreigners can buy them, but only Venezuelans can spend them”.[19]

References[edit]

  • ^ a b Shuster, Simon (20 March 2018). “Exclusive: Russia Secretly Helped Venezuela Launch a Cryptocurrency to Evade U.S. Sanctions”. Time. Retrieved 2018-03-22. 
  • ^ a b c Chappell, Bill (4 December 2017). “Venezuela Will Create New ‘Petro’ Cryptocurrency, President Maduro Says”. National Public Radio. Retrieved 2017-12-05. 
  • ^ Cryptocurrencies as Asset-Backed Instruments: The Venezuelan Petro. Banking and Insurance eJournal. Social Science Research Network (SSRN). Accessed 18 February 2018.
  • ^ a b (20 February 2018). Venezuela launches the ‘petro,’ its cryptocurrency. Retrieved 3 March 2018.
  • ^ a b c Helms, Kevin (17 January 2018). “Venezuela Considers Selling Its “Oil-Backed” Cryptocurrency With a 60% Discount”. Bitcoin News. Retrieved 8 February 2018. 
  • ^ a b “Venezuela Plans a Cryptocurrency, Maduro Says”. The New York Times. 3 December 2017. Retrieved 2017-12-03. 
  • ^ a b Ulmer, Alexandra; Deisy Buitrago (3 December 2017). “Enter the ‘petro’: Venezuela to launch oil-backed cryptocurrency”. Reuters. Retrieved 2017-12-03. 
  • ^ “Monetary Sovereignty: International Political Economy: Monetary Relations eJournal”, Cryptoanarchism and Cryptocurrencies. Social Science Research Network (SSRN). Date accessed 23 January 2018.
  • ^ “Venezuela unveils virtual currency amid economic crisis”. BBC. 3 December 2017. Retrieved 2017-12-03. 
  • ^ Gupta, Girish (5 January 2018). “Maduro says Venezuela will issue $5.9 billion in oil-backed cryptocurrency”. Reuters. Retrieved 8 February 2018. 
  • ^ “Venezuela Parliament Calls President’s $5.9 bln Petro Cryptocurrency ‘New Fraud'”. Cointelegraph. 10 January 2018. 
  • ^ a b c Wroughton, Lesley (16 January 2018). “U.S. warns investors over Venezuela’s ‘petro’ cryptocurrency”. Reuters. Retrieved 8 February 2018. 
  • ^ “Venezuela’s Cryptocurrency Petro Finds Foreign Investors, ICO To Take Place In March”. Cointelegraph. 8 February 2018. 
  • ^ Gallas, Daniel (January 30, 2018). “Venezuela presses ahead with Petro”. BBC. Archived from the original (html) on February 20, 2018. Retrieved February 20, 2018. Venezuela is to start selling its cryptocurrency “Petro” next month. In a meeting with cabinet ministers, President Nicolas Maduro (above) said it will launch the currency on 20 February. 
  • ^ a b c “Venezuela’s ‘Petro’ Launch Was Amateur Hour”. Vice News. 2018-02-21. Retrieved 2018-03-06. 
  • ^ Venezuela to Launch Second Cryptocurrency: ‘Petro Gold’, Caracas: teleSUR, 22 February 2018, retrieved 2018-02-23 
  • ^ Brian Ellsworth, Ana Isabel Martinez (February 21, 2018), Venezuela aims for crypto alchemy with new ‘petro gold’ token, Reuters CS1 maint: Uses authors parameter (link)
  • ^ David Gilbert (February 22, 2018), “Venezuela is launching yet another cryptocurrency to save the economy”, Vice News 
  • ^ a b c O’Brien, Matt (2018-03-05). “Venezuela’s cryptocurrency is one of the worst investments ever”. Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 2018-03-06. 
  • ^ a b West, Jack Karsten and Darrell M. (2018-03-09). “Venezuela’s “petro” undermines other cryptocurrencies – and international sanctions”. Brookings Institute. Retrieved 2018-03-12. 
  • ^ https://twitter.com/PetroDivisa/status/978388189974028289
  • ^ “Venezuela launches presale of state-backed ‘petro’ cryptocurrency”. Financial Times. 2018-02-20. Retrieved 2018-04-19. 
  • ^ “Venezuelans to Buy Homes and Property with State Cryptocurrency – Bitcoin News”. Bitcoin News. 2018-03-25. Retrieved 2018-04-18. 
  • ^ “Venezuelan President Orders Airlines to Accept Petro, Cryptocurrencies for Tickets”. CCN. 2018-03-02. Retrieved 2018-04-18. 
  • ^ a b “Bittersweet Story of the Petro”. Weiss Cryptocurrency Ratings. Weiss Ratings. 28 February 2018. Retrieved 6 March 2018. 
  • ^ Ministerio del Poder Popular de Petróleo y Minería, http://www.minpet.gob.ve/
  • ^ “Venezuela May Limit New Crypto Exchange Launches – CoinDesk”. CoinDesk. 2018-02-26. Retrieved 2018-04-18. 
  • ^ Browne, Ryan (2018-02-21). “Venezuela’s oil-backed cryptocurrency raised $735 million in one day, president claims”. CNBC. Retrieved 2018-04-19. 
  • ^ “Executive Order on Taking Additional Steps to Address the Situation in Venezuela”. The White House. 19 March 2019.
  • ^ Lee, Matthew (19 March 2019). “Trump Bans US Use of Venezuelan Cryptocurrency”. U.S. News & World Report
  • ^ Hanke, Steve (6 December 2017). “Maduro’s ‘Petro’ Cryptocurrency Will Join Chavez’s Bolívar Fuerte, In The Graveyard”. Forbes. New York. Retrieved 2017-12-11. 
  • ^ Jon Markman (2 February 2018). “Trading Lesson: New Government Coins Pose Existential Threat to Cryptos”. MoneyShow. MoneyShow.com. Retrieved 3 March 2018. 
  • ^ Adams, Colin (14 December 2017). “Meet the “Petro”, Venezuela’s New “Cryptocurrency””. Invest in Blockchain. Retrieved 8 February 2018. 
  • ^ “Crypto Rating Sites Are Already Calling Venezuela’s Petro a Scam”. Bloomberg. 2018-04-03. Retrieved 2018-04-05. 
  • ^ “Crypto Investors Should Stay Away from Venezuela’s Petro – CoinDesk”. CoinDesk. 2018-03-25. Retrieved 2018-04-05. 
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    The petro, or petromoneda,[2] launched in February 2018, is a cryptocurrency developed by the government of Venezuela.[3][4] Announced in December[…]

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    Monero (cryptocurrency)

    Monero (XMR) is an open-source cryptocurrency created in April 2014 that focuses on privacy and decentralization that runs on Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, iOS, and FreeBSD. Monero uses a public ledger to record transactions while new units are created through a process called mining. Monero aims to improve on existing cryptocurrency design by obscuring sender, recipient and amount of every transaction made as well as making the mining process more egalitarian.[1]

    The focus on privacy has attracted illicit use by people interested in evading law enforcement.[2][3] The egalitarian mining process made it viable to distribute the mining effort opening new funding avenues for both legitimate online publishers and malicious hackers who covertly embed mining code into websites and apps.[4]

    Contents

    • 1 Architecture
    • 2 History
    • 3 Transaction linkability
    • 4 Client software
    • 5 Implementations of Monero
    • 6 See also
    • 7 References
    • 8 External links

    Architecture[edit]

    Unlike many cryptocurrencies that are derivatives of Bitcoin, Monero is based on the CryptoNight proof-of-work hash algorithm, which comes from the CryptoNote protocol.[5] It possesses significant algorithmic differences relating to blockchain obfuscation.[6][7] By providing a high level of privacy, Monero is fungible, meaning that every unit of the currency can be substituted by another unit. This makes Monero different from public-ledger cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, where addresses with coins previously associated with undesired activity can be blacklisted and have their coins refused by other users.[1]

    In particular, the ring signatures mix the spender’s input with a group of others, making it exponentially more difficult to establish a link between each subsequent transaction.[3][8] Also, the “stealth addresses” generated for each transaction make it impossible to discover the actual destination address of a transaction by anyone else other than the sender and the receiver. Finally, the “ring confidential transactions” mechanism hides the transferred amount.[3]

    Monero is designed to be resistant to application-specific integrated circuit mining, which is commonly used to mine other cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin.[9] It can be mined somewhat efficiently on consumer grade hardware such as x86, x86-64, ARM and GPUs.[9]

    History[edit]

    The underlying CryptoNote protocol that Monero is based on was originally launched by pseudonymous author Nicolas van Saberhagen in October 2013.[3]

    Monero was originally launched by a Bitcointalk forum user only known as “thankful_for_today” under the name BitMonero which is a compound of Bit (as in Bitcoin) and Monero (literally meaning “coin” in Esperanto).[3] Five days later, the currency’s supporters opted for the name to be shortened to Monero.[6]

    In September 2014, Monero was attacked when an unknown party exploited a flaw in CryptoNote that permitted the creation of two subchains that refused to recognize the validity of transactions on each other. CryptoNote later released a patch for the flaw, which Monero implemented.[10]

    Monero experienced rapid growth in market capitalization and transaction volume during the year 2016, partly due to adoption in 2016 by major darknet market AlphaBay,[3] which was closed in July 2017 by law enforcement.[11]

    On January 10, 2017, the privacy of Monero transactions were further strengthened by the adoption of Bitcoin Core developer Gregory Maxwell’s algorithm Confidential Transactions, hiding the amounts being transacted, in combination with an improved version of Ring Signatures.[12]

    Transaction linkability[edit]

    In April 2017 research highlighted three major threats to Monero user’s privacy. The first relies on leveraging the ring signature size of zero, and ability to see the output amounts.[13] The second, described as “Leveraging Output Merging”, involves tracking transactions where two outputs belong to the same user,[13] such as when a user is sending the funds to himself (“churning”). Finally the third threat, “Temporal Analysis”, shows that predicting the right output in a ring signature is easier than previously thought.[13]

    Monero development team addressed the first concern in early 2017 with introduction of Ring Confidential Transactions (ringCT)[14] as well as mandating a minimum size of ring signatures in the March 2016 protocol upgrade. Monero developers also noted that Monero Research Labs, their academic and research arm, already noted and outlined the deficiency in two public research papers in 2014 and 2015.[14]

    Client software[edit]

    A user needs client software, a so-called wallet, to interact with the Monero network. The Monero Project produces the reference implementation of a Monero wallet and there are also third party implementations of Monero clients exist such as Monerujo[15] and Cakewallet[16] which also make it possible to use Monero on Android and iOS. Finally, a web wallet allows users to interact with the network entirely through the browser using a third party website.

    Implementations of Monero[edit]

    The feasibility of CPU mining Monero has made it viable for malicious actors to covertly distribute miners embedded in malware, using the victim’s hardware and electricity for the financial gain of the malware developer as well as legitimate uses with user consent.[17][4]

    The JavaScript implementation of Monero miner Coinhive has made it possible to embed the miner into a website in such a way to use website visitor’s CPU to mine the cryptocurrency while the visitor is consuming the content of the webpage. While this can be done with user’s consent in an effort to provide an alternative funding model to serving ads,[18] some websites have done this without informed consent which has prompted the in-browser miners to be blocked by browser extensions and ad blocking subscription lists.[17][19]

    Monero is sometimes employed by Bitcoin users to break link between transactions, with bitcoins first converted to Monero, then after some delay, converted back and sent to an address unrelated to those used before.[8] Researchers have reported that the operators behind the global ransomware incident WannaCry have converted their proceeds into Monero. It is also the preferred payment method of choice for The Shadow Brokers.[2] Exchanges ShapeShift and Changelly are cooperating with police after it emerged that the WannaCry attackers used it to convert Bitcoin to Monero. “Any transactions made through ShapeShift can not be hidden or obscured and are thus 100 percent transparent” stated ShapeShift.[20]

    See also[edit]

    • Alternative currency
    • Alternative finance
    • Anonymous Internet banking
    • Crypto-anarchism
    • Electronic money
    • Private currency
    • Proof-of-work system
    • World currency

    References[edit]

  • ^ a b “What to Know Before Trading Monero – CoinDesk”. CoinDesk. 2017-05-28. Retrieved 2017-11-22. 
  • ^ a b Gallagher, Sean (4 August 2017). “Researchers say WannaCry operator moved bitcoins to “untraceable” Monero”. Ars Technica. 
  • ^ a b c d e f “Monero, the Drug Dealer’s Cryptocurrency of Choice, Is on Fire”. WIRED. Retrieved 2017-11-22. 
  • ^ a b Tung, Liam. “Android security: Coin miners show up in apps and sites to wear out your CPU | ZDNet”. ZDNet. Retrieved 2017-11-22. 
  • ^ “Monero”. Cointelegraph. 24 May 2015. 
  • ^ a b Rizzo, Pete (February 4, 2017). “Drugs, Code and ICOs: Monero’s Long Road to Blockchain Respect”. CoinDesk. 
  • ^ Lopp, Jameson (April 9, 2016). “Bitcoin and the Rise of the Cypherpunks”. CoinDesk. 
  • ^ a b van Wirdum, Aaron (September 1, 2016). “How Bitcoin Users Reclaim Their Privacy Through Its Anonymous Sibling, Monero”. Bitcoin Magazine. 
  • ^ a b Tsihitas, Theo (September 22, 2017). “Monero vs Bitcoin: Monero Adopted by Privacy Focused Crypto Users”. CoinCentral. 
  • ^ Werner, Albert (September 8, 2014). “Monero network exploit post-mortem”. Cryptonote forum. 
  • ^ Popper, Nathaniel; Ruiz, Rebecca R. (20 July 2017). “2 Leading Online Black Markets Are Shut Down by Authorities”. The New York Times. 
  • ^ O’Leary, Rachel Rose (September 8, 2017). “Increased Hashrate Forces Premature Monero Hard Fork Sep 8, 2017 at 15:00 UTC by Rachel Rose O’Leary”. CoinDesk. 
  • ^ a b c Kumar, Amrit; Fischer, Clément; Tople, Shruti; Saxena, Prateek. “A Traceability Analysis of Monero’s Blockchain” (PDF). eprint.iacr.org. Retrieved 6 November 2017. 
  • ^ a b “You Can Link Monero Transactions – But Which? And What’s the Impact? – CoinDesk”. CoinDesk. 2017-04-22. Retrieved 2017-11-15. 
  • ^ “Monerujo Android Wallet Makes Using Monero on Mobile Easier”. The Merkle. Retrieved 2017-11-22. 
  • ^ “Monero Introduces Its Official XMR Wallet, Community Expresses Ambivalence”. CoinWire. Retrieved 2018-04-29. 
  • ^ a b Goodin, Dan (October 30, 2017). “A surge of sites and apps are exhausting your CPU to mine cryptocurrency”. Ars Technica. 
  • ^ Thomson, Iain (October 19, 2017). “Stealth web crypto-cash miner Coinhive back to the drawing board as blockers move in”. The Register. 
  • ^ Stankovic, Stefan (4 January 2018). “Monero Guide: A Super Secure Cryptocurrency to Invest In”. Unblock. Retrieved 9 April 2018. 
  • ^ “Bitcoin Exchange ShapeShift Helps Police As WannaCry Attacker Converts To Monero”. Cointelegraph. 4 August 2017. 
  • External links[edit]

    • Official website

    Proof-of-stake

    • BitShares
    • Ada
    • EOS.IO
    • Gridcoin
    • Nxt
    • Waves

    Other

    • Counterparty
    • Filecoin
    • NEM
    • NEO
    • Ripple
    • Stellar
    • Steem
    • Tether
    • VeChain
    • Waves

    Related topics

    • Anonymous Internet banking
    • Bitcoin network
    • Complementary currency
    • Crypto-anarchism
    • Cryptocurrency exchange
    • Digital currency
    • Double-spending
    • Electronic money
    • Initial coin offering
    • Airdrop
    • Virtual currency
    • Category
    • Commons
    • List


    Monero (XMR) is an open-source cryptocurrency created in April 2014 that focuses on privacy and decentralization that runs on Windows,[…]

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    List of cryptocurrencies

    This is a list of cryptocurrencies. The number of cryptocurrencies available over the internet as of 10 April 2018[update] is over 1565 and growing.[1] A new cryptocurrency can be created at any time.[2] By market capitalization, Bitcoin is currently (April 10, 2018) the largest blockchain network, followed by Ethereum, Ripple, Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin, and EOS.[3]

    Cryptocurrencies

    Below are some notable cryptocurrencies:

    Notes

  • ^ It is not known whether the name “Satoshi Nakamoto” is real or a pseudonym, nor whether it represents one person or a group.
  • ^ Via Masternodes containing 1000 DASH held as collateral for “Proof of Service”. Through an automated voting mechanism, one Masternode is selected per block and receives 45% of mining rewards.
  • References

  • ^ “All Cryptocurrencies | CoinMarketCap”. coinmarketcap.com. Retrieved December 31, 2017. 
  • ^ Cryptocurrencies: A Brief Thematic Review. Economics of Networks Journal. Social Science Research Network (SSRN). Date accessed August 28, 2017.
  • ^ “All Currencies | CryptoCurrency Market Capitalizations”. Coinmarketcap.com. Retrieved December 31, 2017. 
  • ^ Dixon, Lance (December 24, 2013). “Building Bitcoin use in South Florida and beyond”. Miami Herald. Retrieved January 24, 2014. 
  • ^ Spaven, Emily (December 3, 2013). “Bitcoin price could reach $98,500, say Wall Street analysts”. CoinDesk. Retrieved January 24, 2014. 
  • ^ Taylor, Michael Bedford (2013). “Bitcoin and the age of bespoke silicon” (PDF). Proceedings of the 2013 International Conference on Compilers, Architectures and Synthesis for Embedded Systems. Piscataway, NJ: IEEE Press. ISBN 978-1-4799-1400-5. Retrieved January 14, 2014. 
  • ^ a b Steadman, Ian (May 7, 2013). “Wary of Bitcoin? A guide to some other crypto currencies”. Wired UK. Condé Nast UK. 
  • ^ “Bitcoin on GitHub”. 
  • ^ Hobson, Dominic (2013). “What is Bitcoin?”. XRDS: Crossroads, The ACM Magazine for Students. 20 (1). Association for Computing Machinery. pp. 40–44. doi:10.1145/2510124. ISSN 1528-4972. 
  • ^ “Litecoin on GitHub”. 
  • ^ “vinced/namecoin: Vince’s tree – see namecoin/namecoin for main integration tree”. GitHub. Retrieved July 24, 2017. 
  • ^ Keller, Levin (March 19, 2011). “Namecoin – a distributed name system based on Bitcoin”. Prezi. 
  • ^ “Namecoin on GitHub”. Retrieved 2018-02-04. 
  • ^ “Bytecoin Core Developer’s GitHub page”. 
  • ^ a b Boase, Richard (November 20, 2013). “Litecoin spikes to $200m market capitalization in five hours”. CoinDesk. Retrieved January 14, 2014. 
  • ^ Bradbury, Danny (November 7, 2013). “Third largest crypto currency peercoin moves into spotlight with Vault of Satoshi deal”. CoinDesk. Retrieved January 14, 2014. 
  • ^ “Peercoin on GitHub”. 
  • ^ A History of Dogecoin. Dogecoin Analysis Report. Social Science Research Network (SSRN). Accessed December 28, 2017.
  • ^ “Intro – Dogecoin # Technical specifications”. Dogeco.in. Retrieved December 14, 2013. 
  • ^ “Dog E Coin on GitHub”. 
  • ^ “Emercoin on GitHub”. 
  • ^ “What Feathercoin offers with links and explanations | Feathercoin Forum”. 2018-01-13. Archived from the original on 2018-01-13. Retrieved 2018-01-13. 
  • ^ “FeatherCoin on GitHub”. 
  • ^ Halford, Rob (October 6, 2013). “GRIDCOIN – GRC (The environmentally conscious coin)”. cryptocointalk.com. Retrieved November 14, 2014. 
  • ^ Wagner, Andrew. “Putting the Blockchain to Work For Science!”. Bitcoin Magazine. Retrieved April 9, 2016. 
  • ^ “New Coin Launch Announcement – GRC – GridCoin – GRIDCOIN GRC – Cryptocurrencytalk.com”. Cryptocointalk.com. Retrieved July 24, 2017. 
  • ^ “GridCoin on GitHub”. 
  • ^ Halford, Rob. “Gridcoin: Crypto-Currency using Berkeley Open Infrastructure Network Computing Grid as a Proof Of Work” (PDF). Retrieved April 11, 2016. 
  • ^ “GridCoin: Using the Blockchain for Good”. CoinTelegraph. Retrieved April 9, 2016. 
  • ^ a b “FAQ · primecoin/primecoin Wiki · GitHub”. Retrieved January 20, 2014. 
  • ^ “Primecoin on GitHub”. 
  • ^ Chayka, Kyle (July 2, 2013). “What Comes After Bitcoin?”. Pacific Standard. Retrieved January 18, 2014. 
  • ^ Vega, Danny (December 4, 2013). “Ripple’s Big Move: Mining Crypto currency with a Purpose”. Seattlepi.com. Hearst Seattle Media, LLC, a division of The Hearst Corporation. 
  • ^ a b Brown, Ariella (May 17, 2013). “10 things you need to know about Ripple”. CoinDesk. Retrieved January 15, 2014. 
  • ^ Simonite, Tom (April 11, 2013). “Big-name investors back effort to build a better Bitcoin”. MIT Technology Review. Retrieved January 14, 2014. 
  • ^ “How it works – Ripple Wiki”. Retrieved January 20, 2014. 
  • ^ “Rippled on GitHub”. 
  • ^ “NXT Whitepaper”. NxtWiki – Whitepaper. Archived from the original on February 3, 2015. Retrieved December 21, 2014. 
  • ^ “NXT on Bitbucket”. 
  • ^ Casey, Michael J. (March 5, 2014). “Auroracoin already third-biggest cryptocoin–and it’s not even out yet”. The Wall Street Journal. 
  • ^ “Auroracoin on GitHub”. 
  • ^ Scharr, Jill (May 28, 2014). “What is Dash? An FAQ”. Tom’s Guide. 
  • ^ “Dash on GitHub”. 
  • ^ http://www.dashvotetracker.com
  • ^ “NEO on GitHub”. 
  • ^ “MazaCoin on GitHub”. 
  • ^ “CryptoNight – Bitcoin Wiki”. En.bitcoin.it. June 19, 2014. Retrieved July 24, 2017. 
  • ^ “Monero on GitHub”. 
  • ^ “NEM on GitHub”. 
  • ^ “PotCoin on GitHub”. 
  • ^ Meredith, Greg. “A Brief History of Synereo”. Synereo Blog. Retrieved October 13, 2016.
  • ^ “Synereo on GitHub”. 
  • ^ “Synereo and NFX Guild Launch Strategic Partnership to Build a Decentralized Internet”. Bitcoin Magazine. Retrieved November 13, 2016.
  • ^ Mercier Voyer, Stephanie. “Titcoin Is a Brand New Cryptocurrency for Porn Purchases”. Vice Magazine. Retrieved June 18, 2014.
  • ^ “Titcoin on GitHub”. 
  • ^ “Titcoin Receives Two Web & Tech XBIZ Nominations”. Payout Magazine. Retrieved November 18, 2014.
  • ^ “Verge on GitHub”. 
  • ^ a b “Stellar.org White Papers” (PDF). Stellar.org. 
  • ^ “Stellar on GitHub”. 
  • ^ “Lyra2RE – A new PoW algorithm for an ASIC-free future” (PDF). November 29, 2014. 
  • ^ “Vertcoin on GitHub”. 
  • ^ “Out in the Open: Teenage Hacker Transforms Web Into One Giant Bitcoin Network”. Wired.com. Retrieved July 24, 2017. 
  • ^ a b “Ethash”. Github.com. Retrieved July 24, 2017. 
  • ^ “Ethereum on GitHub”. 
  • ^ “README/README.md at master”. Github.com. Retrieved July 24, 2017. 
  • ^ Adinolfi, Joseph. “Exclusive: Grayscale launches digital-currency fund backed by Silver Lake’s co-founder Hutchins”. MarketWatch. Retrieved April 27, 2017. 
  • ^ Wirdum, Aaron van. “Rejecting Today’s Hard Fork, the Ethereum Classic Project Continues on the Original Chain: Here’s Why”. Bitcoin Magazine. Retrieved April 27, 2017. 
  • ^ “Mystery Shrouds Tether”. Bloomberg. Retrieved December 27, 2017. 
  • ^ “”Tether White Paper”” (PDF). Tether. Retrieved December 27, 2017. 
  • ^ “”What is Tether””. tether. Retrieved December 27, 2017. 
  • ^ “Decred on GitHub”. 
  • ^ https://voting.decred.org/
  • ^ “Waves Platform on GitHub”. 
  • ^ “The Birth Of A Blockchain: From Ripples To Making ‘Crypto’ Waves”. Forbes. Retrieved October 20, 2017.
  • ^ “Zcash on GitHub”. 
  • ^ “Bitcoin Cash Markets and Dillema”. CryptoCoinCharts. Retrieved September 14, 2017. 
  • ^ a b “Documentation: EOS.IO Documents”. February 10, 2018 – via GitHub. 
  • ^ “Web Assembly on EOS – 50,000 Transfers Per Second — Steemit”. steemit.com. 
  • ^ “IOHK/Cardano on GitHub”. 
  • ^ Ray, Tiernan (January 9, 2018). “Kodak CEO: Blockchain Significant, Though Not a Doubling in Stock Price”. Barrons. Retrieved January 11, 2018. 
  • ^ “Onix’s white paper” (PDF). www.onixcoin.com. January 13, 2018. Retrieved January 13, 2018. 
  • ^ “OnixCoin on GitHub”. 
  • Proof-of-stake

    • BitShares
    • Ada
    • EOS.IO
    • Gridcoin
    • Nxt
    • Waves

    Other

    • Counterparty
    • Filecoin
    • NEM
    • NEO
    • Ripple
    • Stellar
    • Steem
    • Tether
    • VeChain
    • Waves

    Related topics

    • Anonymous Internet banking
    • Bitcoin network
    • Complementary currency
    • Crypto-anarchism
    • Cryptocurrency exchange
    • Digital currency
    • Double-spending
    • Electronic money
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    • Airdrop
    • Virtual currency
    • Category
    • Commons
    • List


    This is a list of cryptocurrencies. The number of cryptocurrencies available over the internet as of 10 April 2018[update] is over 1565[…]

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    Legality of bitcoin by country or territory

    For a broader coverage related to this topic, see Bitcoin.

    The legal status of bitcoin varies substantially from country to country and is still undefined or changing in many of them.[1] Whereas the majority of countries do not make the usage of bitcoin itself illegal, its status as money (or a commodity) varies, with differing regulatory implications. While some countries have explicitly allowed its use and trade, others have banned or restricted it. Likewise, various government agencies, departments, and courts have classified bitcoins differently. While this article provides the legal status of bitcoin, regulations and bans that apply to this cryptocurrency likely extend to similar systems as well.

    Legal status of bitcoin
      permissive (it’s legal to use bitcoin)
      contentious (some restrictions on legal usage of bitcoin)
      contentious (interpretation of old laws, but bitcoin isn’t prohibited directly)
      hostile (full or partial prohibition)

    Contents

    • 1 Detail by union
    • 2 Detail by country or territory
      • 2.1 Alphabetical index to classifications
      • 2.2 Africa
        • 2.2.1 Northern Africa
        • 2.2.2 Western Africa
        • 2.2.3 East & Central Africa
        • 2.2.4 Southeast Africa
        • 2.2.5 Horn of Africa
        • 2.2.6 Indian Ocean States
        • 2.2.7 Southern Africa
      • 2.3 Americas
        • 2.3.1 North America
        • 2.3.2 Central America
        • 2.3.3 Caribbean
        • 2.3.4 South America
      • 2.4 Asia
        • 2.4.1 Central Asia
        • 2.4.2 Eurasia
        • 2.4.3 West Asia
        • 2.4.4 South Asia
        • 2.4.5 East Asia
        • 2.4.6 Southeast Asia
      • 2.5 Europe
        • 2.5.1 Central Europe
        • 2.5.2 Eastern Europe
        • 2.5.3 Northern Europe
        • 2.5.4 Southern Europe
        • 2.5.5 Western Europe
      • 2.6 Oceania
        • 2.6.1 Australasia
        • 2.6.2 Melanesia
        • 2.6.3 Micronesia
        • 2.6.4 Polynesia
    • 3 Footnotes
    • 4 References
    • 5 External links

    Detail by union[edit]

    Detail by country or territory[edit]

    Alphabetical index to classifications[edit]

    Africa[edit]

    Northern Africa[edit]

    Western Africa[edit]

    East & Central Africa[edit]
    Southeast Africa[edit]
    Horn of Africa[edit]
    Indian Ocean States[edit]
    Southern Africa[edit]

    Americas[edit]

    North America[edit]
    See also: BitLicense

    Central America[edit]

    Caribbean[edit]

    South America[edit]

    Asia[edit]

    Central Asia[edit]

    Eurasia[edit]

    West Asia[edit]

    South Asia[edit]

    East Asia[edit]

    Southeast Asia[edit]

    Europe[edit]

    Central Europe[edit]

    Eastern Europe[edit]

    Northern Europe[edit]

    Southern Europe[edit]

    Western Europe[edit]

    Oceania[edit]

    Australasia[edit]

    Melanesia[edit]
    Micronesia[edit]
    Polynesia[edit]

    Footnotes[edit]

  • ^ Translated from: …bitcoin nespĺňa atribúty meny v právnom zmysle (jeho platnosť na určitom území nie je mocensky ustanovená, právny poriadok neupravuje jej obeh ani ochranu), zastávame názor, že ho nie je možné označovať za menu.
  • References[edit]

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  • ^ “Russian Tax Office Updates Legal Stance On Bitcoin”. 
  • ^ “Russia Central Bank Categorically Against Regulating Crypto as Money”. Cointelegraph. Retrieved 16 September 2017. 
  • ^ “Замминистра финансов РФ назвал незаконными расчеты в криптовалютах”. Interfax.ru (in Russian). 8 September 2017. Retrieved 16 September 2017. 
  • ^ https://primorsky–spb.sudrf.ru/modules.php?name=sud_delo&srv_num=1&name_op=doc&number=84460799&delo_id=1540005&new=&text_number=1
  • ^ Diacono, Tim (20 April 2017). “Malta set for ‘revolutionary’ national blockchain strategy”. MaltaToday. Retrieved 25 April 2017. 
  • ^ M. Bozinovska, Vesna (9 October 2014). “For payment with Bitcoin in Macedonia, you can go to jail for up to five years!”. Vecer. 
  • ^ “Réguler les monnaies virtuelles” (PDF). Ministre des Finances. Retrieved 6 June 2016. 
  • ^ “Communique virtual currencies” (PDF). Commission de Surveillance du Secteur Financier. Retrieved 15 October 2015. 
  • ^ a b Rizzo, Pete. “Luxembourg Opens Dialogue with Bitcoin Businesses in New Statement”. Regulation. CoinDesk. Retrieved 19 October 2015. 
  • ^ “SnapSwap granted first bitLicense in Europe”. SnapSwap. Retrieved 19 October 2015. 
  • ^ Rizzo, Pete (12 October 2015). “Scorechain Raises $570k for European Bitcoin Compliance Solution”. Companies. CoinDesk. Retrieved 19 October 2015. 
  • ^ “Tax treatment of activities involving Bitcoin and other similar cryptocurrencies”. HM Revenue & Customs. 
  • ^ Hartge-Hazelman, Bianca (13 December 2013). “Glenn Stevens says Bitcoins show promise, but so did tulips”. JHT. The Australian Financial Review. Retrieved 21 September 2014. 
  • ^ “Bitcoin To Become ‘Just Like Money’ In Australia July 1”. cointelegraph.com. Retrieved 10 May 2017. 
  • External links[edit]

    • Regulation of Bitcoin in Selected Jurisdictions – law.gov
    • GOP Tax bill to charge capital gains on cryptocurrency income

    • Book
    • Category


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    Crypto News

    Crypto News

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    History of bitcoin

    Further information: Bitcoin

    Number of bitcoin transactions per month (logarithmic scale)

    Bitcoin is a cryptocurrency, a digital asset designed to work as a medium of exchange that uses cryptography to control its creation and management, rather than relying on central authorities.[1] The presumed pseudonymous Satoshi Nakamoto integrated many existing ideas from the cypherpunk community when creating bitcoin. Over the course of bitcoin’s history, it has undergone rapid growth to become a significant currency both on and offline – from the mid 2010s onward, some businesses on a global scale began accepting bitcoins in addition to fiat currencies.[2]

    Contents

    • 1 Pre-history
    • 2 Creation
    • 3 Growth
      • 3.1 2011
      • 3.2 2012
      • 3.3 2013
      • 3.4 2014
      • 3.5 2015
      • 3.6 2016
      • 3.7 2017
      • 3.8 2018
    • 4 Prices and value history
    • 5 Satoshi Nakamoto
    • 6 Forks
      • 6.1 March 2013
    • 7 Regulatory issues
    • 8 Theft and exchange shutdowns
    • 9 Taxation and regulation
    • 10 Arbitrary blockchain content
    • 11 References
    • 12 External links

    Pre-history[edit]

    Prior to the release of bitcoin there were a number of digital cash technologies starting with the issuer based ecash protocols of David Chaum[3] and Stefan Brands. Adam Back developed hashcash, a proof-of-work scheme for spam control. The first proposals for distributed digital scarcity based cryptocurrencies were Wei Dai’s b-money[4] and Nick Szabo’s bit gold.[5][6] Hal Finney developed reusable proof of work (RPOW) using hashcash as its proof of work algorithm.[7]

    In the bit gold proposal which proposed a collectible market based mechanism for inflation control, Nick Szabo also investigated some additional enabling aspects including a Byzantine fault-tolerant asset registry to store and transfer the chained proof-of-work solutions.[6]

    There has been much speculation as to the identity of Satoshi Nakamoto with suspects including Dai, Szabo, and Finney – and accompanying denials.[8][9] The possibility that Satoshi Nakamoto was a computer collective in the European financial sector has also been discussed.[10]

    Creation[edit]

    On 18 August 2008, the domain name bitcoin.org was registered.[11] Later that year on 31 October, a link to a paper authored by Satoshi Nakamoto titled Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System[12] was posted to a cryptography mailing list.[11] This paper detailed methods of using a peer-to-peer network to generate what was described as “a system for electronic transactions without relying on trust”.[13][14][15] On 3 January 2009, the bitcoin network came into existence with Satoshi Nakamoto mining the genesis block of bitcoin (block number 0), which had a reward of 50 bitcoins.[13][16] Embedded in the coinbase of this block was the text:

    The Times 03/Jan/2009 Chancellor on brink of second bailout for banks.[17]

    The text refers to a headline in The Times published on 3 January 2009.[18] This note has been interpreted as both a timestamp of the genesis date and a derisive comment on the instability caused by fractional-reserve banking.[19]:18

    The first open source bitcoin client was released on 9 January 2009.[20][21]

    One of the first supporters, adopters, contributor to bitcoin and receiver of the first bitcoin transaction was programmer Hal Finney. Finney downloaded the bitcoin software the day it was released, and received 10 bitcoins from Nakamoto in the world’s first bitcoin transaction on 12 January 2009.[22][23] Other early supporters were Wei Dai, creator of bitcoin predecessor b-money, and Nick Szabo, creator of bitcoin predecessor bit gold.[13]

    In the early days, Nakamoto is estimated to have mined 1 million bitcoins.[24] Before disappearing from any involvement in bitcoin, Nakamoto in a sense handed over the reins to developer Gavin Andresen, who then became the bitcoin lead developer at the Bitcoin Foundation, the ‘anarchic’ bitcoin community’s closest thing to an official public face.[25]

    The value of the first bitcoin transactions were negotiated by individuals on the bitcoin forum with one notable transaction of 10,000 BTC used to indirectly purchase two pizzas delivered by Papa John’s.[13]

    On 6 August 2010, a major vulnerability in the bitcoin protocol was spotted. Transactions weren’t properly verified before they were included in the transaction log or blockchain, which let users bypass bitcoin’s economic restrictions and create an indefinite number of bitcoins.[26][27] On 15 August, the vulnerability was exploited; over 184 billion bitcoins were generated in a transaction, and sent to two addresses on the network. Within hours, the transaction was spotted and erased from the transaction log after the bug was fixed and the network forked to an updated version of the bitcoin protocol.[28] This was the only major security flaw found and exploited in bitcoin’s history.[26][27]

    Growth[edit]

    2011[edit]

    Based on bitcoin’s open source code, other cryptocurrencies started to emerge.[29]

    The Electronic Frontier Foundation, a non-profit group, started accepting bitcoins in January 2011,[30] then stopped accepting them in June 2011, citing concerns about a lack of legal precedent about new currency systems.[31] The EFF’s decision was reversed on 17 May 2013 when they resumed accepting bitcoin.[32]

    In June 2011 Wikileaks[33] and other organizations began to accept bitcoins for donations.

    On 22 March 2011 WeUseCoins published the first viral video [34] which has had over 6.4 million views. In September 2011 Vitalik Buterin co-founded Bitcoin Magazine. On 23 December 2011, Douglas Feigelson of BitBills filed a patent application for “Creating And Using Digital Currency” with the United States Patent and Trademark Office, an action which was contested based on prior art in June 2013.[35][36]

    2012[edit]

    In January 2012, bitcoin was featured as the main subject within a fictionalized trial on the CBS legal drama The Good Wife in the third-season episode “Bitcoin for Dummies”. The host of CNBC’s Mad Money, Jim Cramer, played himself in a courtroom scene where he testifies that he doesn’t consider bitcoin a true currency, saying “There’s no central bank to regulate it; it’s digital and functions completely peer to peer”.[37]

    In September 2012, the Bitcoin Foundation was launched to “accelerate the global growth of bitcoin through standardization, protection, and promotion of the open source protocol”. The founders were Gavin Andresen, Jon Matonis, Patrick Murck, Charlie Shrem, and Peter Vessenes.[38]

    In October 2012, BitPay reported having over 1,000 merchants accepting bitcoin under its payment processing service.[39] In November 2012, WordPress had started accepting bitcoins.[40]

    2013[edit]

    In February 2013 the bitcoin-based payment processor Coinbase reported selling US$1 million worth of bitcoins in a single month at over $22 per bitcoin.[41] The Internet Archive announced that it was ready to accept donations as bitcoins and that it intends to give employees the option to receive portions of their salaries in bitcoin currency.[42]

    In March the bitcoin transaction log called the blockchain temporarily split into two independent chains with differing rules on how transactions were accepted. For six hours two bitcoin networks operated at the same time, each with its own version of the transaction history. The core developers called for a temporary halt to transactions, sparking a sharp sell-off.[43] Normal operation was restored when the majority of the network downgraded to version 0.7 of the bitcoin software.[43] The Mt. Gox exchange briefly halted bitcoin deposits and the exchange rate briefly dipped by 23% to $37 as the event occurred[44][45] before recovering to previous level of approximately $48 in the following hours.[46] In the US, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) established regulatory guidelines for “decentralized virtual currencies” such as bitcoin, classifying American bitcoin miners who sell their generated bitcoins as Money Service Businesses (or MSBs), that may be subject to registration and other legal obligations.[47][48][49]

    In April, payment processors BitInstant and Mt. Gox experienced processing delays due to insufficient capacity[50] resulting in the bitcoin exchange rate dropping from $266 to $76 before returning to $160 within six hours.[51] Bitcoin gained greater recognition when services such as OkCupid and Foodler began accepting it for payment.[52]

    On 15 May 2013, the US authorities seized accounts associated with Mt. Gox after discovering that it had not registered as a money transmitter with FinCEN in the US.[53][54]

    On 17 May 2013, it was reported that BitInstant processed approximately 30 percent of the money going into and out of bitcoin, and in April alone facilitated 30,000 transactions,[55]

    On 23 June 2013, it was reported that the US Drug Enforcement Administration listed 11.02 bitcoins as a seized asset in a United States Department of Justice seizure notice pursuant to 21 U.S.C. § 881.[56] This marked the first time a government agency claimed to have seized bitcoin.[57][58]

    In July 2013, a project began in Kenya linking bitcoin with M-Pesa, a popular mobile payments system, in an experiment designed to spur innovative payments in Africa.[59] During the same month the Foreign Exchange Administration and Policy Department in Thailand stated that bitcoin lacks any legal framework and would therefore be illegal, which effectively banned trading on bitcoin exchanges in the country.[60][61] According to Vitalik Buterin, a writer for Bitcoin Magazine, “bitcoin’s fate in Thailand may give the electronic currency more credibility in some circles”, but he was concerned it didn’t bode well for bitcoin in China.[62]

    On 6 August 2013, Federal Judge Amos Mazzant of the Eastern District of Texas of the Fifth Circuit ruled that bitcoins are “a currency or a form of money” (specifically securities as defined by Federal Securities Laws), and as such were subject to the court’s jurisdiction,[63][64] and Germany’s Finance Ministry subsumed bitcoins under the term “unit of account”—a financial instrument—though not as e-money or a functional currency, a classification nonetheless having legal and tax implications.[65]

    In October 2013, the FBI seized roughly 26,000 BTC from website Silk Road during the arrest of alleged owner Ross William Ulbricht.[66][67][68] Two companies, Robocoin and Bitcoiniacs launched the world’s first bitcoin ATM on 29 October 2013 in Vancouver, BC, Canada, allowing clients to sell or purchase bitcoin currency at a downtown coffee shop.[69][70][71] Chinese internet giant Baidu had allowed clients of website security services to pay with bitcoins.[72]

    In November 2013, the University of Nicosia announced that it would be accepting bitcoin as payment for tuition fees, with the university’s chief financial officer calling it the “gold of tomorrow”.[73] During November 2013, the China-based bitcoin exchange BTC China overtook the Japan-based Mt. Gox and the Europe-based Bitstamp to become the largest bitcoin trading exchange by trade volume.[74]

    In December 2013, Overstock.com[75] announced plans to accept bitcoin in the second half of 2014. On 5 December 2013, the People’s Bank of China prohibited Chinese financial institutions from using bitcoins.[76] After the announcement, the value of bitcoins dropped,[77] and Baidu no longer accepted bitcoins for certain services.[78] Buying real-world goods with any virtual currency had been illegal in China since at least 2009.[79]

    2014[edit]

    In January 2014, Zynga[80] announced it was testing bitcoin for purchasing in-game assets in seven of its games. That same month, The D Las Vegas Casino Hotel and Golden Gate Hotel & Casino properties in downtown Las Vegas announced they would also begin accepting bitcoin, according to an article by USA Today. The article also stated the currency would be accepted in five locations, including the front desk and certain restaurants.[81] The network rate exceeded 10 petahash/sec.[82] TigerDirect[83] and Overstock.com[84] started accepting bitcoin.

    In early February 2014, one of the largest bitcoin exchanges, Mt. Gox,[85] suspended withdrawals citing technical issues.[86] By the end of the month, Mt. Gox had filed for bankruptcy protection in Japan amid reports that 744,000 bitcoins had been stolen.[87] Months before the filing, the popularity of Mt. Gox had waned as users experienced difficulties withdrawing funds.[88]

    In June 2014 the network exceeded 100 petahash/sec.[89] On 18 June 2014, it was announced that bitcoin payment service provider BitPay would become the new sponsor of St. Petersburg Bowl under a two-year deal, renamed the Bitcoin St. Petersburg Bowl. Bitcoin was to be accepted for ticket and concession sales at the game as part of the sponsorship, and the sponsorship itself was also paid for using bitcoin.[90]

    In July 2014 Newegg and Dell[91] started accepting bitcoin.

    In September 2014 TeraExchange, LLC, received approval from the U.S.Commodity Futures Trading Commission “CFTC” to begin listing an over-the-counter swap product based on the price of a bitcoin. The CFTC swap product approval marks the first time a U.S. regulatory agency approved a bitcoin financial product.[92]

    In December 2014 Microsoft began to accept bitcoin to buy Xbox games and Windows software.[93]

    In 2014, several lighthearted songs celebrating bitcoin such as the Ode to Satoshi[94] have been released.[95]

    A documentary film, The Rise and Rise of Bitcoin, was released in 2014, featuring interviews with bitcoin users, such as a computer programmer and a drug dealer.[96]

    2015[edit]

    In January 2015 Coinbase raised 75 million USD as part of a Series C funding round, smashing the previous record for a bitcoin company.[97] Less than one year after the collapse of Mt. Gox, United Kingdom-based exchange Bitstamp announced that their exchange would be taken offline while they investigate a hack which resulted in about 19,000 bitcoins (equivalent to roughly US$5 million at that time) being stolen from their hot wallet.[98] The exchange remained offline for several days amid speculation that customers had lost their funds. Bitstamp resumed trading on 9 January after increasing security measures and assuring customers that their account balances would not be impacted.[99]

    In March 2015 21 Inc announced it had raised 116 million USD in venture funding, the largest amount for any digital currency-related companies.[100]

    As of August 2015 it was estimated that 160,000 merchants accept bitcoin payments.[101] Barclays announced that they would become the first UK high street bank to start accepting bitcoin, with a plan to facilitate users to make charitable donations using the cryptocurrency outside their systems.[102] They partnered in April 2016 with mobile payment startup Circle Internet Financial.[103]

    In October 2015, a proposal was submitted to the Unicode Consortium to add a codepoint for the bitcoin symbol.[104]

    2016[edit]

    In January 2016, the network rate exceeded 1 exahash/sec.[105]

    In March 2016, the Cabinet of Japan recognized virtual currencies like bitcoin as having a function similar to real money.[106] Bidorbuy, the largest South African online marketplace, launched bitcoin payments for both buyers and sellers.[107]

    In April 2016, Steam started accepting bitcoin as payment for video games and other online media.[108]

    In July 2016, researchers published a paper showing that by November 2013 bitcoin commerce was no longer driven by “sin” activities but instead by legitimate enterprises.[109] Uber switched to bitcoin in Argentina after the government blocked credit card companies from dealing with Uber.[110]

    In August 2016, a major bitcoin exchange, Bitfinex, was hacked and nearly 120,000 BTC (around $60m) was stolen.[111]

    In September 2016, the number of bitcoin ATMs had doubled over the last 18 months and reached 771 ATMs worldwide.[112]

    In November 2016, the Swiss Railway operator SBB (CFF) upgraded all their automated ticket machines so that bitcoin could be bought from them using the scanner on the ticket machine to scan the bitcoin address on a phone app.[113]

    Bitcoin generates more academic interest year after year; the number of Google Scholar articles published mentioning bitcoin grew from 83 in 2009, to 424 in 2012, and 3580 in 2016. Also, the academic Ledger (journal) published its first issue. It is edited by Peter Rizun.

    2017[edit]

    The number of businesses accepting bitcoin continues to increase. In January 2017, NHK reported the number of online stores accepting bitcoin in Japan had increased 4.6 times over the past year.[114] BitPay CEO Stephen Pair declared the company’s transaction rate grew 3× from January 2016 to February 2017, and explained usage of bitcoin is growing in B2B supply chain payments.[115]

    Bitcoin gains more legitimacy among lawmakers and legacy financial companies. For example, Japan passed a law to accept bitcoin as a legal payment method,[116] and Russia has announced that it will legalize the use of cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin.[117] And Norway’s largest online bank, Skandiabanken, integrates bitcoin accounts.[118]

    In March 2017, the number of GitHub projects related to bitcoin passed 10,000.[119]

    Exchange trading volumes continue to increase. For the 6-month period ending March 2017, Mexican exchange Bitso saw trading volume increase 1500%.[120] Between January and May 2017 Poloniex saw an increase of more than 600% active traders online and regularly processed 640% more transactions.[121]

    In June 2017, the bitcoin symbol was encoded in Unicode version 10.0 at position U+20BF (₿) in the Currency Symbols block.[122]

    Up until July 2017, bitcoin users maintained a common set of rules for the cryptocurrency.[123] On 1 August 2017 bitcoin split into two derivative digital currencies, the 1MB blocksize legacy chain bitcoin (BTC) and the 8MB blocksize hard fork upgrade Bitcoin Cash (BCH). The split has been called the Bitcoin Cash hard fork.[124]

    On 6 December 2017 the software marketplace Steam announced that it would no longer accept bitcoin as payment for its products, citing slow transactions speeds, price volatility, and high fees for transactions.[125][126]

    2018[edit]

    On 22 January 2018, South Korea brought in a regulation that requires all the bitcoin traders to reveal their identity, thus putting a ban on anonymous trading of bitcoins.[127]

    On 24 January 2018, the online payment firm Stripe announced that it would phase out its support for bitcoin payments by late April 2018, citing declining demand, rising fees and longer transaction times as the reasons.[128]

    Prices and value history[edit]

    The price of a bitcoin reached US$1,139.9 on 4 January 2017. (semi logarithmic plot)

    Among the factors which may have contributed to this rise were the European sovereign-debt crisis—particularly the 2012–2013 Cypriot financial crisis—statements by FinCEN improving the currency’s legal standing and rising media and Internet interest.[129][130][131][132]

    Until 2013, almost all market with bitcoins were in United States dollars (US $).[133][134][135]

    As the market valuation of the total stock of bitcoins approached US$1 billion, some commentators called bitcoin prices a bubble.[136][137][138] In early April 2013, the price per bitcoin dropped from $266 to around $50 and then rose to around $100. Over two weeks starting late June 2013 the price dropped steadily to $70. The price began to recover, peaking once again on 1 October at $140. On 2 October, The Silk Road was seized by the FBI. This seizure caused a flash crash to $110. The price quickly rebounded, returning to $200 several weeks later.[139] The latest run went from $200 on 3 November to $900 on 18 November.[140] Bitcoin passed US$1,000 on 28 November 2013 at Mt. Gox.

    Prices fell to around $400 in April 2014, before rallying in the middle of the year. They then declined to not much more than $200 in early 2015.[141]

    Satoshi Nakamoto[edit]

    Main article: Satoshi Nakamoto

    “Satoshi Nakamoto” is presumed to be a pseudonym for the person or people who designed the original bitcoin protocol in 2008 and launched the network in 2009. Nakamoto was responsible for creating the majority of the official bitcoin software and was active in making modifications and posting technical information on the bitcoin forum.[13] Investigations into the real identity of Satoshi Nakamoto were attempted by The New Yorker and Fast Company. The New Yorker’s investigation brought up at least two possible candidates: Michael Clear and Vili Lehdonvirta. Fast Company’s investigation brought up circumstantial evidence linking an encryption patent application filed by Neal King, Vladimir Oksman and Charles Bry on 15 August 2008, and the bitcoin.org domain name which was registered 72 hours later. The patent application (#20100042841) contained networking and encryption technologies similar to bitcoin’s, and textual analysis revealed that the phrase “… computationally impractical to reverse” appeared in both the patent application and bitcoin’s whitepaper.[12] All three inventors explicitly denied being Satoshi Nakamoto.[162][163] In May 2013, Ted Nelson speculated that Japanese mathematician Shinichi Mochizuki is Satoshi Nakamoto.[164] Later in 2013 the Israeli researchers Dorit Ron and Adi Shamir pointed to Silk Road-linked Ross William Ulbricht as the possible person behind the cover. The two researchers based their suspicion on an analysis of the network of bitcoin transactions.[165] These allegations were contested[166] and Ron and Shamir later retracted their claim.[167]

    Nakamoto’s involvement with bitcoin does not appear to extend past mid-2010.[13] In April 2011, Nakamoto communicated with a bitcoin contributor, saying that he had “moved on to other things”.[17]

    Stefan Thomas, a Swiss coder and active community member, graphed the time stamps for each of Nakamoto’s 500-plus bitcoin forum posts; the resulting chart showed a steep decline to almost no posts between the hours of 5 a.m. and 11 a.m. Greenwich Mean Time. Because this pattern held true even on Saturdays and Sundays, it suggested that Nakamoto was asleep at this time, and the hours of 5 a.m. to 11 a.m. GMT are midnight to 6 a.m. Eastern Standard Time (North American Eastern Standard Time). Other clues suggested that Nakamoto was British: A newspaper headline he had encoded in the genesis block came from the UK-published newspaper The Times, and both his forum posts and his comments in the bitcoin source code used British English spellings, such as “optimise” and “colour”.[13]

    An Internet search by an anonymous blogger of texts similar in writing to the bitcoin whitepaper suggests Nick Szabo’s “bit gold” articles as having a similar author.[8] Nick denied being Satoshi, and stated his official opinion on Satoshi and bitcoin in a May 2011 article.[168]

    In a March 2014 article in Newsweek, journalist Leah McGrath Goodman doxed Dorian S. Nakamoto of Temple City, California, saying that Satoshi Nakamoto is the man’s birth name. Her methods and conclusion drew widespread criticism.[169][170]

    In June 2016, the London Review of Books published a piece by Andrew O’Hagan about Nakamoto.[171]. The real identity of Satoshi Nakamoto still remains a matter of dispute.

    Forks[edit]

    See also: Bitcoin scalability problem and List of bitcoin forks

    A fork referring to a blockchain is defined variously as a blockchain split into two paths forward, or as a change of protocol rules. Accidental forks on the bitcoin network regularly occur as part of the mining process. They happen when two miners find a block at a similar point in time. As a result, the network briefly forks. This fork is subsequently resolved by the software which automatically chooses the longest chain, thereby orphaning the extra blocks added to the shorter chain (that were dropped by the longer chain).[172]

    March 2013[edit]

    On 12 March 2013, a bitcoin miner running version 0.8.0 of the bitcoin software created a large block that was considered invalid in version 0.7 (due to an undiscovered inconsistency between the two versions). This created a split or “fork” in the blockchain since computers with the recent version of the software accepted the invalid block and continued to build on the diverging chain, whereas older versions of the software rejected it and continued extending the blockchain without the offending block. This split resulted in two separate transaction logs being formed without clear consensus, which allowed for the same funds to be spent differently on each chain. In response, the Mt. Gox exchange temporarily halted bitcoin deposits.[173] The exchange rate fell 23% to $37 on the Mt. Gox exchange but rose most of the way back to its prior level of $48.[44][45]

    Miners resolved the split by downgrading to version 0.7, putting them back on track with the canonical blockchain. User funds largely remained unaffected and were available when network consensus was restored.[174] The network reached consensus and continued to operate as normal a few hours after the split.[175]

    Regulatory issues[edit]

    On 18 March 2013, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (or FinCEN), a bureau of the United States Department of the Treasury, issued a report regarding centralized and decentralized “virtual currencies” and their legal status within “money services business” (MSB) and Bank Secrecy Act regulations.[49][54] It classified digital currencies and other digital payment systems such as bitcoin as “virtual currencies” because they are not legal tender under any sovereign jurisdiction. FinCEN cleared American users of bitcoin of legal obligations[54] by saying, “A user of virtual currency is not an MSB under FinCEN’s regulations and therefore is not subject to MSB registration, reporting, and recordkeeping regulations.” However, it held that American entities who generate “virtual currency” such as bitcoins are money transmitters or MSBs if they sell their generated currency for national currency: “…a person that creates units of convertible virtual currency and sells those units to another person for real currency or its equivalent is engaged in transmission to another location and is a money transmitter.” This specifically extends to “miners” of the bitcoin currency who may have to register as MSBs and abide by the legal requirements of being a money transmitter if they sell their generated bitcoins for national currency and are within the United States.[47] Since FinCEN issued this guidance, dozens of virtual currency exchangers and administrators have registered with FinCEN, and FinCEN is receiving an increasing number of suspicious activity reports (SARs) from these entities.[176]

    Additionally, FinCEN claimed regulation over American entities that manage bitcoins in a payment processor setting or as an exchanger: “In addition, a person is an exchanger and a money transmitter if the person accepts such de-centralized convertible virtual currency from one person and transmits it to another person as part of the acceptance and transfer of currency, funds, or other value that substitutes for currency.”[48][49]

    In summary, FinCEN’s decision would require bitcoin exchanges where bitcoins are traded for traditional currencies to disclose large transactions and suspicious activity, comply with money laundering regulations, and collect information about their customers as traditional financial institutions are required to do.[54][177][178]

    Patrick Murck of the Bitcoin Foundation criticized FinCEN’s report as an “overreach” and claimed that FinCEN “cannot rely on this guidance in any enforcement action”.[179][non-primary source needed]

    Jennifer Shasky Calvery, the director of FinCEN said, “Virtual currencies are subject to the same rules as other currencies. … Basic money-services business rules apply here.”[54]

    In its October 2012 study, Virtual currency schemes, the European Central Bank concluded that the growth of virtual currencies will continue, and, given the currencies’ inherent price instability, lack of close regulation, and risk of illegal uses by anonymous users, the Bank warned that periodic examination of developments would be necessary to reassess risks.[180]

    In 2013, the U.S. Treasury extended its anti-money laundering regulations to processors of bitcoin transactions.[181][182]

    In June 2013, Bitcoin Foundation board member Jon Matonis wrote in Forbes that he received a warning letter from the California Department of Financial Institutions accusing the foundation of unlicensed money transmission. Matonis denied that the foundation is engaged in money transmission and said he viewed the case as “an opportunity to educate state regulators.”[183]

    In late July 2013, the industry group Committee for the Establishment of the Digital Asset Transfer Authority began to form to set best practices and standards, to work with regulators and policymakers to adapt existing currency requirements to digital currency technology and business models and develop risk management standards.[184]

    In 2014, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filed an administrative action against Erik T. Voorhees, for violating Securities Act Section 5 for publicly offering unregistered interests in two bitcoin websites in exchange for bitcoins.[185]

    Theft and exchange shutdowns[edit]

    Bitcoins can be stored in a bitcoin cryptocurrency wallet. Theft of bitcoin has been documented on numerous occasions. At other times, bitcoin exchanges have shut down, taking their clients’ bitcoins with them. A Wired study published April 2013 showed that 45 percent of bitcoin exchanges end up closing.[186]

    On 19 June 2011, a security breach of the Mt. Gox bitcoin exchange caused the nominal price of a bitcoin to fraudulently drop to one cent on the Mt. Gox exchange, after a hacker used credentials from a Mt. Gox auditor’s compromised computer illegally to transfer a large number of bitcoins to himself. They used the exchange’s software to sell them all nominally, creating a massive “ask” order at any price. Within minutes, the price reverted to its correct user-traded value.[187][188][189][190][191][192] Accounts with the equivalent of more than US$8,750,000 were affected.[189]

    In July 2011, the operator of Bitomat, the third-largest bitcoin exchange, announced that he had lost access to his wallet.dat file with about 17,000 bitcoins (roughly equivalent to US$220,000 at that time). He announced that he would sell the service for the missing amount, aiming to use funds from the sale to refund his customers.[193]

    In August 2011, MyBitcoin, a now defunct bitcoin transaction processor, declared that it was hacked, which caused it to be shut down, paying 49% on customer deposits, leaving more than 78,000 bitcoins (equivalent to roughly US$800,000 at that time) unaccounted for.[194][195]

    In early August 2012, a lawsuit was filed in San Francisco court against Bitcoinica — a bitcoin trading venue — claiming about US$460,000 from the company. Bitcoinica was hacked twice in 2012, which led to allegations that the venue neglected the safety of customers’ money and cheated them out of withdrawal requests.[196][197]

    In late August 2012, an operation titled Bitcoin Savings and Trust was shut down by the owner, leaving around US$5.6 million in bitcoin-based debts; this led to allegations that the operation was a Ponzi scheme.[198][199][200][201] In September 2012, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission had reportedly started an investigation on the case.[202]

    In September 2012, Bitfloor, a bitcoin exchange, also reported being hacked, with 24,000 bitcoins (worth about US$250,000) stolen. As a result, Bitfloor suspended operations.[203][204] The same month, Bitfloor resumed operations; its founder said that he reported the theft to FBI, and that he plans to repay the victims, though the time frame for repayment is unclear.[205]

    On 3 April 2013, Instawallet, a web-based wallet provider, was hacked,[206] resulting in the theft of over 35,000 bitcoins[207] which were valued at US$129.90 per bitcoin at the time, or nearly $4.6 million in total. As a result, Instawallet suspended operations.[206]

    On 11 August 2013, the Bitcoin Foundation announced that a bug in a pseudorandom number generator within the Android operating system had been exploited to steal from wallets generated by Android apps; fixes were provided 13 August 2013.[208]

    In October 2013, Inputs.io, an Australian-based bitcoin wallet provider was hacked with a loss of 4100 bitcoins, worth over A$1 million at time of theft. The service was run by the operator TradeFortress. Coinchat, the associated bitcoin chat room, has been taken over by a new admin.[209]

    On 26 October 2013, a Hong-Kong based bitcoin trading platform owned by Global Bond Limited (GBL) vanished with 30 million yuan (US$5 million) from 500 investors.[210]

    Mt. Gox, the Japan-based exchange that in 2013 handled 70% of all worldwide bitcoin traffic, declared bankruptcy in February 2014, with bitcoins worth about $390 million missing, for unclear reasons. The CEO was eventually arrested and charged with embezzlement.[211]

    On 3 March 2014, Flexcoin announced it was closing its doors because of a hack attack that took place the day before.[212][213][214] In a statement that once occupied their homepage, they announced on 3 March 2014 that “As Flexcoin does not have the resources, assets, or otherwise to come back from this loss [the hack], we are closing our doors immediately.”[215] Users can no longer log into the site.

    Chinese cryptocurrency exchange Bter lost $2.1 million in BTC in February 2015.[216]

    The Slovenian exchange Bitstamp lost bitcoin worth $5.1 million to a hack in January 2015.[217]

    The US-based exchange Cryptsy declared bankruptcy in January 2016, ostensibly because of a 2014 hacking incident; the court-appointed receiver later alleged that Cryptsy’s CEO had stolen $3.3 million.[218]

    In May 2016, Gatecoin closed temporarily after a breach had caused a loss of about $2 million in cryptocurrency. It subsequently relaunched its exchange in August 2016 and is slowly reimbursing its customers.[219][220]

    In August 2016, hackers stole some $72 million in customer bitcoin from the Hong-Kong-based exchange Bitfinex.[221]

    In December 2017, hackers stole 4,700 bitcoins from NiceHash a platform that allowed users to sell hashing power.[222][223] The value of the stolen bitcoins totaled about $80M. [224]

    On December 19, 2017, Yapian, a company that owns the Youbit cryptocurrency exchange in South Korea, filed for bankruptcy following a hack, the second in eight months.[225]

    Taxation and regulation[edit]

    See also: Legality of bitcoin by country or territory

    In 2012, the Cryptocurrency Legal Advocacy Group (CLAG) stressed the importance for taxpayers to determine whether taxes are due on a bitcoin-related transaction based on whether one has experienced a “realization event”: when a taxpayer has provided a service in exchange for bitcoins, a realization event has probably occurred and any gain or loss would likely be calculated using fair market values for the service provided.”[226]

    In August 2013, the German Finance Ministry characterized bitcoin as a unit of account,[65][227] usable in multilateral clearing circles and subject to capital gains tax if held less than one year.[227]

    On 5 December 2013, the People’s Bank of China announced in a press release regarding bitcoin regulation that whilst individuals in China are permitted to freely trade and exchange bitcoins as a commodity, it is prohibited for Chinese financial banks to operate using bitcoins or for bitcoins to be used as legal tender currency, and that entities dealing with bitcoins must track and report suspicious activity to prevent money laundering.[228] The value of bitcoin dropped on various exchanges between 11 and 20 percent following the regulation announcement, before rebounding upward again.[229]

    Arbitrary blockchain content[edit]

    Bitcoin’s blockchain can be loaded with arbitrary data. In 2018 researchers from RWTH Aachen University and Goethe University identified 1,600 files added to the blockchain, 59 of which included links to unlawful images of child exploitation, politically sensitive content, or privacy violations. “Our analysis shows that certain content, eg, illegal pornography, can render the mere possession of a blockchain illegal.”[230]

    Interpol also sent out an alert in 2015 saying that “the design of the blockchain means there is the possibility of malware being injected and permanently hosted with no methods currently available to wipe this data”.[231]

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