News Update: Why you should mine Bitcoins in Iceland, India’s BTC exchange shutting down and more…

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Economist Declares Bitcoin Service Firms Better Investment than Currency Itself

Looking to invest in Bitcoin? According to at least one economist, John Greenwood, investing in Bitcoin services is actually a better investment than Bitcoin itself. According to Mr. Greenwood more money can be made out of investing in the service providers serving the Bitcoin community than can be made by directly investing in Bitcoin.

This is the strategy being followed by Li Ka-shing, the richest man in Asia, who has invested in Bitpay, which services more than 14,000 users spread out over 200 different countries. The investment was made through Li’s venture capital company, Ventures Horizons.

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India’s Largest Exchange Shuts Shop After Central Bank Releases Warning

BuySellBitCo.in, India’s largest Bitcoin exchange, shut down this Thursday following a warning released by the Reserve Bank of India. The Central Bank warned against trading and investing in digital currencies. The Central Bank specifically cited concerns over security, financial, legal, and consumer protection risks.

The Central Bank’s warning did not ban Bitcoin, nor did it hint at future action against the currency. The Reserve Bank did say, however, that it would continue to look into the matter. The warning was enough, however, to spook investors and companies across India.

Bitcoin had been gaining widespread acceptance across the country as traders looked to hedge against turbulence in the Rupee market and to cash in on the fast rising currency. When BuySellBitCo.in shut down, other operators also became spooked and closed their doors, which also led to a sell-off among Indian investors.

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News Anchor Robbed of Bitcoins Live on TV

Time and time again, people are warned to be careful with their Bitcoins. Unfortunately, many people still haven’t gotten the message. News anchor Matt Miller drove home the point, by accident, last Friday when he surprised two fellow anchors with Bitcoin gift certificates featuring the QR codes that would reveal the private security keys for roughly $20 dollars.

Bet you can guess what happened next. When the camera zoomed in on the QR code, a Reddit user quickly scanned the images, found the keys, and made off with the loot. In a sign of mercy, however, the user offered to refund to the Bitcoins to Matt Miller and explained that he was trying to teach a lesson more than anything else.

Point taken. Hopefully.

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Ross Ulbricht: Not the Dread Pirate Roberts, but Bitcoins Are Mine

Ross Ulbricht has claimed that he is not the Dread Pirate Roberts who created the Silk Road drug trading site, but that the $30 million dollars in Bitcoins the U.S. government confiscated are in-fact his. Ulbricht also argued that Bitcoins cannot be confiscated by the government, and thus should be returned to him.

The argument that Bitcoins can’t be confiscated is unlikely to hold up in court, despite the American legal system’s unfamiliarity with Bitcoin. Courts have already ruled that anything of value, whether that be baseball cards or frequent flyer miles, can be confiscated by the government during criminal proceedings.

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Cheap Hydroelectricity Fueling Bitcoin Mining Boom in Iceland

A new industry is taking root in Iceland: Bitcoin mining. Artic cooled air, which provides cheap air conditioning for Bitcoin mining rigs, and cheap hydroelectricity is helping Icelandic mining companies gain an advantage over their international counterparts.

The largest operation, headed by Emmanuel Abiodun, features over 100 machines working 24/7 to mine Bitcoins. With each new block of Bitcoins now worth thousands of dollars, it’s easy to see why some entrepreneurs are rushing headfirst into Bitcoin mining. Still, comparative regional advantages have never been so stark as they are now in Iceland.

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Brian Booker

An international financial analyst and writer. He has consulted for the Malaysian government, various MNC's, and other organisations. He focuses on currencies, commodities, and emerging South East Asian markets.

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