My dad invested his pension but he’s too ill to handle it any more – what can we do? Can I get broadband without a landline? Gox collapse sends Bitcoin tumbling: What is happening to the virtual currency, is it safe and will it make a comeback? Bitcoin’s recent poor fortune just got worse after one of the biggest websites for trading the virtual currency, Mt.
1,000 mark the decentralised currency hit at the end of last year, prompting many to question if this was the future of online payments. So is this the beginning of the end of the Bitcoin bonanza? Bitcoins were launched in 2009, offering a currency free from government interference that could be shared instantly online. Its popularity soared at the end of last year as websites, shops and pubs around the world began accepting it as a form of payment, while US regulators clamped down on those using it to buy drugs and illegal goods. 120 for most of the year. Earlier this month the Japan-based Mt. Gox exchange said it had noticed a bug that meant transactions could be hacked, so stopped accepting transfers until this was fixed.
But there has been an escalating crisis since then. Gox’s chief executive Mark Karpeles resigned from the Bitcoin Foundation while all the exchange’s tweets on its feed followed by more than 27,000 people disappeared. The website now appears to have been taken down. Anyone with money stored on the exchange cannot access it, and as the currency is unregulated there is no way of claiming money back unless the company goes bankrupt. Even then there is no guarantee that investors will be able to get their Bitcoins back. People with money on the exchange have complained at not being able to access their funds while some have protested outside the Mt. Bitcoins are inherently volatile as they are not linked to a central bank or other currencies the way that the pound or dollar is.
This makes them subject to wild price swings. 870 after the Chinese government began banning use of the virtual currency by official bodies. Gox has had a similar impact as it was one of the largest exchanges for Bitcoins. However, the Bitcoin Foundation and other exchanges have distanced themselves from the issues Mt. This is something that cannot be corrected overnight. Therefore, any company dealing with Bitcoin transactions and have coded their own wallet software should responsibly prepare for this possibility and include in their software a way to validate transaction IDs.