Bitcoin xpub – Bitcoints

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Bitcoin

Bitcoin is a payment system invented by Satoshi Nakamoto, who published the invention in 2008 and released it as open-source software in 2009. The system is peer-to-peer, users can transact directly without needing an intermediary. Transactions are verified by network knots and recorded in a public distributed ledger called the block chain. The ledger uses its own unit of account, also called bitcoin. The system works without a central repository or single administrator, which has led the US Treasury to categorize it as a decentralized virtual currency. Bitcoin is often called the very first cryptocurrency, albeit prior systems existed. Bitcoin is more correctly described as the very first decentralized digital currency. It is the largest of its kind in terms of total market value.

Bitcoins are created as a prize for payment processing work in which users suggest their computing power to verify and record payments into the public ledger. This activity is called mining and the miners are rewarded with transaction fees and freshly created bitcoins. Besides mining, bitcoins can be obtained in exchange for different currencies, products, and services. Users can send and receive bitcoins for an optional transaction fee.

Bitcoin as a form of payment for products and services has grown, and merchants have an incentive to accept it because fees are lower than the 2–3% typically imposed by credit card processors. Unlike credit cards, any fees are paid by the purchaser, not the vendor. The European Banking Authority and other sources have warned that bitcoin users are not protected by refund rights or chargebacks. Despite a big increase in the number of merchants accepting bitcoin, the cryptocurrency doesn’t have much momentum in retail transactions.

The use of bitcoin by criminals has attracted the attention of financial regulators, legislative figures, law enforcement, and media. Criminal activities are primarily centered around black markets and theft, tho’ officials in countries such as the United States also recognize that bitcoin can provide legitimate financial services.

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