Bitcoin was introduced as a peer-to-peer system for online payments that does not require a trusted central authority like banks.
But before we delve into what Bitcoin is; we need to understand one more concept, i.e. Cryptocurrency
What is Cryptocurrency?
A cryptocurrency is an online money or digital money or digital currency; lol; as the case may be. It is an online-based medium of exchange different completely from physical medium (such as naira notes, dollar notes and coins)
A cryptocurrency exhibits properties similar to our physical Naira currency, but it allows for immediate transactions and borderless transfer-of-ownership, across borders, across seas, worldwide
In terms of security, cryptocurrency is the most secured, using an encryption technique called cryptography used to regulate the generation of units of currency (though limited) and verify the transfer of funds, operating freely of a central bank.
In other words, your money is safe when you bank with Cryptocurrency unless you become careless
The first cryptocurrency to be created was Bitcoin back in 2008. But today there are hundreds of other cryptocurrencies, often referred to as Altcoins.
So, what is A Bitcoin?
Bitcoin is the first ‘decentralized’ digital (online) currency. They are digital coins you can send through the internet.
No one controls it (decentralized). Bitcoins are not printed, like naira or dollars – they are produced by people like you & I through a process called MINING, and increasingly businesses, running computers all around the world, using software that solves mathematical problems.
Brief History of Bitcoin
Back in 2009, an anonymous software developer called Satoshi Nakamoto brought about Bitcoin, which he declared was an electronic payment system based on mathematical proof.
The idea was to produce a currency independent of any central authority like banks, institutions, and it’s transferred electronically, more or less instantly, with very low transaction fees.
Here’s an excerpt from Bitcoin’s whitepaper (a document that explains why a technology is been produced):
Abstract. Bitcoin is purely a peer-to-peer version of electronic cash which allows online payments to be sent directly from one party to another without going through a financial institution
In simple words, bitcoin is an open source software to transfer money over the internet.
Since 2008, Bitcoin has grown into a technology, a currency, an investment vehicle, a means of making money online in Nigeria and a community of users. More to be discussed later on this blog
This results in a system where payments are non-reversible, accounts cannot be frozen, and transaction fees are much lower; no maintenance fee..
With credit card transactions, you give your private keys (address, pin number, the CVC pin behind your card) to every merchant you do business with. Would you allow that with bitcoin? Nope
With credit cards and PayPal, you have to give up lots of private information to do purchases (Except with expensive gift cards). Would you allow that with bitcoin? Nope
With naira notes or dollar bills, a central authority is able to watch your transactions and freeze your money. Would you allow that with bitcoin? Nope
With naira or dollar currency, entities such as the Federal Reserve, CBN, steal your purchasing power using inflation. Would you allow that with bitcoin? Nope
I am angry considering the fact that lots of people blind fully love their corrupt, outdated system with even more holes and flaws than ever.
If the same problems that are present with naira or dollar currency were present in Bitcoin, no one would use it. Think about it
There are only 3 good reasons left to use Naira notes: offline transactions (cash), paying taxes, and because everyone else uses it. schmk
The purpose of this guide as we hoped is to explain what Bitcoin is and how it works as well as describe how you can use it in Nigeria to improve your life
If you want this movement of explaining to Nigerians what Cryptocurrencies are; kindly share
Learn the benefits of what the technology can do for you and also stay clear of the perils and drawbacks behind this extraordinary form of money in Nigeria
If you haven’t already gotten started with your first Bitcoin in Nigeria, be sure to sign up for our official newsletter which teaches Nigerians how to purchase, store and secure cryptocurrency in Nigeria and abroad