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Hackers blamed for Bitcoin plunge

Jason Murphy (via AFR) | April 12, 2013
Bitcoin, a digital currency, fell from a peak of over $US265 to under $US105, in what some say was an attack by hackers looking to manipulate the currency.



For now, most people who own Bitcoins appear to be speculators. Among them is the winner of the 2012 Aussie Millions poker tournament, Oliver Speidel. The Australian won $1.6 million in January 2012, and has been on the world poker tour since. But he has made more from bitcoins than poker in the last year, he said.

He originally bought bitcoins because he was frustrated by using banks to move money around for online poker, but they still can't be used on most online poker sites.

"I figured it was probably one of those things that is almost likely not going to work out, but there is a small chance it could be kind of revolutionary," Mr Speidel said. "I figured it was an interesting experiment at worst. I don't know what's going to happen but it seemed like a decent bet at the time."

Bitcoin is the only global digital currency . Time will tell if its first-mover advantage endures, said Mr James .

"If another digital currency comes along that gets the acceptance of traditional financial institutions... then it may be that another digital currency ends up being more successful."


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