Bitcoin was trading at $10,000 by 10:30 PM ET, Etherum at $1,107 on the Bitfinex exchange, while Ripple XRP token was trading at $1.11 on the Poloniex exchange. The price of Bitcoin dropped by 3 percent, and a similar decrease was seen in most rival coins. This means that, unlike the United States dollar, which is regulated by the Department of Treasury, cryptocurrencies are not backed by a central bank.
"Customs service have been closely looking at illegal foreign exchange trading using cryptocurrency", said a statement from the South Korean task force behind the discovery.
Many pundits had expected the country to follow in the footsteps of China, which has cracked down hard on cryptocurrency trading in recent weeks.
While it might be enticing to jump on the bandwagon, especially with the prevalence of cryptocurrency ads on social media and their consistent presence in (both positive and negative) stories on the news, Mr. Parkhouse reminds investors: "I would be anxious about investing in a company that just popped up on your Facebook feed". Bitcoin came into existence at the end of 2008, and here we are ten years later with blockchain technology about to be the future of the business landscape.
Advocates of Bitcoin argue that part of its value proposition stems from the fact it has a finite supply of 21 million coins, which means those in circulation aren't just made up on a whim.
Until now, Taiwan's TSMC was the only other major processor-manufacturer engaged in the activity. "If you decide to buy virtual currencies such as Bitcoin, do your research and use a legitimate seller".
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These types of regulations should be expected and supported by the cryptocurrency community.
Nonetheless, other coins among the top 10 most traded could establish themselves as a significant alternative to Bitcoin.
However, this is unlikely to rain on the parade of Bitcoin, even though many observers believe that the altcoin is hugely overvalued.
Earlier, the price of Bitcoin fell from its GMT open of nearly $11,300 to just over $10,200, according to industry price website Coinmarketcap.
"So, for a cryptocurrency to have a market cap of $1 billion, maybe only $50 million actually moved into the cryptocurrency".
January started with FUD ("fear, uncertainty, doubt") coming out of South Korea regarding how legislation was being prepared to ban cryptocurrencies entirely.
It's worth noting that the "foreign exchange crimes", as Reuters called them, might include a wide variety of situations where someone used cryptocurrency to send money overseas or otherwise use cryptocurrency as a way of exchanging money.