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How to Buy Bitcoin Safely and Easily

How to Buy Bitcoin Safely and Easily

 

Hello there! I write about Bitcoin, cryptocurrencies and investing, and I try to break things down as simply as I can to the newly interested person.

If you are reading this, you have been hearing a lot about Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies. You are probably trying to buy some or are trying to help a friend do the same without spending a lot of time. If this is the case, you are in the right place. Keep reading.

Cryptocurrencies can be volatile, and you can make a lot of money and also lose a lot of money. Greed and fear can cause you to make bad or rush financial decisions. I recently wrote an article about a simple and lazy strategy that overcomes most greed and fear in investing. Click here to read it.

You might be thinking, “Quite the yapping and tell me where I can buy some Bitcoin or Dogecoin!” Okay, then let’s get to it!

First let’s define a word, fiat, and I am not talking about cars. Fiat literally means a currency not backed by a commodity such as gold. Currently, every national currency in the world is a fiat currency. At some point in the past, probably in response to the argument that “Bitcoin isn’t backed by anything” Bitcoiners pointed out that neither are national currencies and started referring to them as “fiat” currencies. So, in this case, we specifically mean Dollars, Euros, Yen or any other national currency.

Centralized Fiat-to-Crypto Exchanges & Wallets

These are for-profit businesses that allow you to use a fiat currency such as dollars to buy Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. There are some slight variations, but in most cases the steps are simple:

  1. Go to the app or website and sign up.
  2. provide your email, address and other contact info.
  3. Submit a government-issued ID
  4. Link your bank account.
  5. Within a few days at the most, you can start buying, selling and trading cryptocurrencies. You also need this to obtain Bitcoin or Ether if you want access to a Crypto-to-Crypto exchange to trade the less accessible cryptocurrencies.

These include the popular services such as Coinbase and Gemini in the US where you can buy, sell, send and receive Bitcoin and over 40 other cryptocurrencies. They are regulated and insured in the US.

A great way to automatically save in Bitcoin is to use my link and sign up for Swan Bitcoin, whose business model is literally helping you do just that.

Click here for a great resource if you are outside of the US, and wish to buy Bitcoin using:

  • Euros
  • British Pounds
  • Nigerian Naira
  • Russian Rubles

 

There are many other financial services & investing apps and sites that now give access to cryptocurrency that I have not used myself. SoFieToroAbraUpholdRevolut are other services that allow you to buy and sell cryptocurrencies and other assets, some using many different currencies. Many of these appear to be available in the US, Europe and around the world.

These apps/services will often recommend that you set up an extra security layer called two-factor authentication. This means that after you type your username and password, a second action is required, such as inputting a special code provided by an app on your phone. This is highly recommended. This requires setting up an app such as Authy or Google Authenticator. There are other such applications out there as well. You can sometimes also set this up where a code is sent to your cell phone, but using an authentication app is considered much safer.

A criticism of such exchanges is that they have control over your funds, just like a bank.

Apps that Are Not Recommended

Other apps that provide the ability to buy and sell Bitcoin and crypto now include Robinhood, WeBull or PayPal. I do not recommend these because you cannot send your purchased cryptocurrency to another exchange or your own wallet.

Centralized Crypto-to-Crypto Exchanges

These are also for-profit businesses that allow you to sell cryptocurrencies to buy other cryptocurrencies. These are very popular especially during Bitcoin bull markets where some of the smaller cryptocurrencies or “altcoins” (so called because they are alternative coins to Bitcoin) get very popular and go up hundreds or even thousands of percent in a matter of days or weeks. This was famously recently, Dogecoin. There are thousands of others that can be seen on CoinMarketCap.

Crypto-to-Crypto exchanges are recommended for trading, which can be a very profitable especially in a Bitcoin bull market, as we have experienced since last fall as well as in 2017 and early 2018.

These are also a good place to find low-priced cryptocurrencies that you think will go up in price a lot over a long period of time. As of this writing, Dogecoin and most of the thousands of coins out there are not available on the above Fiat-to-Crypto wallets or exchanges.

Exchanges are like a public bathroom — you go in, do your business and get out.

I like this metaphor because it describes a healthy attitude instead of the extremes of being too scared or too careless.

If you want to know more detailed information about crypto exchanges, how much crypto they have in their exchange wallet, if they have insurance, etc. I found a great resource. check out cer.live.

 

Do you value these articles? Follow and share!

For an article an about how to overcome the emotions of trading, check out this read.

For an article about safety tips to follow for trading cryptocurrencies, check out this read.

For an article about the history of exchange hacks and some alternatives, check out this read.

This article is not investment advice, nor does it take your personal financial situation into account. Never invest more than you are willing to lose, and don’t buy Bitcoin or other investments on credit. I write about my observations and personal opinions with the purpose to share what I have learned with others.

Disclosure: I am invested in Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.

Author

Alexandre Lores is a personal finance writer from Tampa Bay, Florida, with the goal to help one million people achieve financial freedom. He has spent over five years studying markets and economics, finding Bitcoin in 2017 and never turning back. He frequently appears on TV and in online news articles and is a regular Twitter spaces host.

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