Bitcoin is the virtual currency that everyone is talking about. There are now 15.5 million Bitcoins in circulation. But it's not the only option out there in the crypto-world. Like Bitcoin, there are coins available to be mined and, eventually, there can be multiple options to be traded on the open market and used to purchase goods and services.
One such virtual currency is OneCoin, run by Dr. Ruja Ignatova which is set to drive the industry forward.
How Does OneCoin Work?
OneCoin is a digital currency, based on cryptography and created through mining. Just like the serial number on a paper bill, each digital coin is unique, and, unlike money issued by governments, there is a finite number of OneCoins which ensures they cannot be affected by inflation and are impossible to counterfeit.
The currency shares some commonalities with Bitcoin, but has some key differences in structure, such as its transparent block chain and a network of millions of users.
CEO Ignatova says, "Virtual currency is designed to change society as a whole. What people love about cryptocurrency is that it cannot be controlled by anything like a government or government entity, and is instead decided by market forces."
A Safe Place to Trade
How do you know if an exchange is safe or even real? That's a question many users of Bitcoin question, and it's also one of the main barriers to adoption.
Advance encryption methods, automatic backups of the entire database, and duplication of all backup data are just some of the security measures that users demand before using an exchange. Any currency exchange that wants to succeed will have to be forthcoming with information regarding their security.
OneCoin is one exchange that conforms to these demands through constantly upgrading their system and constantly testing to make sure that they have the best possible security arrangements.
Like with all areas of the digital world, the security of virtual currency and the exchanges they trade on will become a major battleground.
Is it getting better?
New exchanges have cleaned up the industry because they realize that the only way forward is to work with governments and to work with regulation. People want to have peace of mind when they deal with virtual currency, and that starts with improving security.
After multiple major Bitcoin thefts, people are warier than ever and to be honest you cannot blame them for their concerns.
Bitcoin's Need to Be Less Anonymous
Bitcoin has always been successful because it's one of the few currencies that you can trade without people knowing who you are. The problem is this same anonymity is preventing this virtual currency from being taken seriously as a secure option for paying for goods and services.
Exchanges like OneCoin are increasingly implementing Know-Your-Customer (KYC) rules. This is where customers will have to provide personal information about themselves in order to open an account, including their name, address, and date of birth. Identity documents must also be submitted.
In some ways, this diminishes the privacy attractions of Bitcoin, but at the same time it means users can trade Bitcoin without worrying about losing everything.
Furthermore, government regulators will increasingly demand that the industry conforms to the same rules as the rest of the financial industry. Some people may be against this idea, but ultimately it will lead to more adoption because people are going to trust the industry.
The Effect on Society
The effect virtual currency will have on society has yet to be fully realized. Bitcoin's effect will not be felt for some years yet. Despite the age of virtual currency, it has barely managed to scratch the surface of the mainstream society. Most people have yet to hear about what Bitcoin is, what OneCoin is, or how virtual currency works.
But an increasing number of vendors are now picking up Bitcoin. They are allowing Bitcoin payments. And it's only a matter of time before more and more people and businesses follow suit.
Currently, Bitcoin is growing at an incredible rate in South America because of the governments' controls on hard currency. With high taxes and high transaction fees, people are looking for new ways to payand Bitcoin offers an alternative.
For now, the goal is to make people aware of Bitcoin. Until this happens, it's going to be a while before vendors decide to take on this currency.
What do you think is the future of Bitcoin?