What is Bitcoin?
• Bitcoin accounts are online
• Digital money
not something you can hold in your hand
It’s value is kept in an account or “wallet”
• The term “CRYTPOCURRENCY” is used to describe Bitcoin;
it is a medium of exchange
using computer algorithms (or cryptography)
to pay for and receive transactions
from customer to merchant,
or person to person.
How to Set up a Bitcoin Account
• Program software can be installed from bitcoin.org
• available for Windows, Mac, and Linux
• Set up your own BITCOIN WALLET
• Looks similar to a bank account, but you’re not connected to any bank
you’re connected to the bitcoin network
• Your bitcoin wallet is the money you have in a file on your computer,
Protected by a complex password you will set up
with at least 12 characters
Create a Bitcoin Wallet
• On your smartphone -- use in daily transactions with your unique
• On your computer – online payments
How to Get Bitcoin
• Accept Bitcoin as a form of payment to your bitcoin wallet
• Buy them by “Mining”
• Buy them from a bitcoin exchange with a bank account or Paypal
CoinDesk Website for checking bitcoin trading values
A FEW THINGS ABOUT A BITCOIN TRANSACTION . . . . .
• Nobody logs on to a bank or credit card account.
• There may be a small transfer fee but no interest rates incurred.
• No banks were holding the money for a couple of days. Transfer is
• There are no bank holidays. Transactions are 24/7
• No tax authority saw the transaction or the money, but this has been under
scrutiny, most recently by the state of New Jersey.
• No one knows about the transaction except the two accounts making the
• The Transaction is anonymous.
• Only encrypted digital signatures are used.
Benefits for Small Business
• Your accounts as well as the customer’s accounts are anonymous
• No social security #s, no personal financial information to be hacked
• Not tied to banks or credit cards
• transactions are irreversible and secure
• Responsibility for fraud protection is not responsibility of the merchant
• Alternative for online ordering and payments
• Put a sign in the window!
• Purchase a point-of-sale terminal
• Several different companies offer terminals
• Coinkite -- example
• Keeps track or your transactions
• The value is unstable
• Could be regulated by governments and taxed
• Transactions can be slow – about 10 minutes
• If everyone in the world used bitcoin, the current version couldn’t
handle that number of transactions
• MtGox, the main trading entity, could be hacked (and already has
• Bitcoin’s anonymity allows untraceable illegal transactions
Who is accepting bitcoins as payment?
• Wordpress to set up your
• Overstock.com, Amazon, Home Depot, CVS, Kmart, Sears
• Space travel with Richard Branson
• Ok Cupid dating site
• United Way for Donations
• More & more & more