Anybody smart enough to have invested in Bitcoin is probably revelling in the fact they’re making some serious money as the price continues to rise.
And yesterday alone, it went up by $3,000. Yes, that’s $3,000 in one day.
If you bought one Bitcoin yesterday, it would’ve cost you $12,000 – and you could have sold it for $15,000 at the end of the day. Nice.
But today, the Guardian reported the marketplace suspended operations while it investigated a breach, saying around $64m in the cryptocurrency had been stolen via a ‘sophisticated’ hack.
The exchange said it was working with law enforcement as ‘a matter of urgency’ and is urging users to change their passwords.
The hack is reportedly a ‘highly professional attack’ with ‘sophisticated social engineering’ resulting in approximately 4,700 Bitcoin being stolen, worth about $63.92m at current prices.
Some financial experts have reportedly been calling for greater regulation of the cryptocurrency, increasing transparency in regards to trader identity and ending anonymity.
The UK government is reportedly planning to increase scrutiny on Bitcoin due to concerns the currency could be used for money laundering and evading tax.
A crackdown is expected to come into effect at some point during 2018, which will force traders to report any suspicious activity.
Wish i got into investing bitcoin, scary money.
— Lewis Buchan (@LewisBuchan) December 4, 2017
Some investors are still worried about the stability of Bitcoin, which is sometimes referred to as being a ‘bubble’.
Experts have previously argued its value will be short-lived and unstable because Bitcoin isn’t a standardised or widely accepted currency.
The legitimacy of the virtual currency is still uncertain, however it is starting to make its way into hedgefund portfolios.
The reason I believe Bitcoin is and will be so powerful is that people from all countries are buying it. I think it will be the no1 currency and quicker than people are expecting; something the world has needed for a long time 1 currency #predict #bitcoin #btc $btc https://t.co/kR3OrcXq3t
— Crypto Clown (@CryptoForClowns) December 4, 2017
Neil Wilson, senior market analyst at ETX Capital, told The Guardian:
The legitimacy this gives Bitcoin as a tradeable asset is very important. The market cap of Bitcoin now exceeds that of IBM, Disney [or] McDonald’s…
But for traditionalists, it’s hard to fathom. Rather than a commodity or currency, Bitcoin is like owning stock in a company that will only ever issue 21 million shares and never pay a penny in dividends.
The only way it has value is if the next guy is willing to pay you more for it – the greater fool. With no intrinsic value to bitcoin, it’s hard to see this as anything other than a giant speculative bubble.
This weekend, it was revealed the twins who once sued Mark Zuckerberg claiming he ‘stole’ the idea of Facebook hit the bigtime becoming the first Bitcoin billionaires.
Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss put an $11m (£8m) bet on Bitcoin, using their payout from the case more than four years ago, and it ballooned by almost 10,000 per cent after last week’s price surge, wrote The Telegraph.
This is believed to be the first billion-dollar return made by a cryptocurrency investor, ever.
Tyler and Cameron were students at Harvard University with Mr Zuckerberg and infamously won a $65m payout from the social network in 2008 after they claimed Facebook was their idea.
In March 2013, they used $11m of that payout to purchase around one per cent of the world’s supply of Bitcoin when one coin was ‘worth around $120’. A very smart move.
WHY didn’t I foresee this?