Are Bitcoins Secure?
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While attackers are going after Bitcoin-related sites, there is an important distinction between the security of the Bitcoin network and the Bitcoin exchanges, Joe DeMesy, senior security analyst at Bishop Fox, said.
"The Bitcoin network is a network of computers that communicate using the Bitcoin protocol, allowing persons within the network to exchange and mine Bitcoin, whereas a Bitcoin exchange is just a Website that allows users to sell their existing Bitcoin in exchange for other currencies, such as U.S. dollars," DeMesy told eWEEK.
No one has ever found a critical vulnerability within the Bitcoin protocol itself that would allow a user within the Bitcoin network to fraudulently create coins or forge transactions, DeMesy said.
That said, there have been compromises of various Bitcoin exchanges throughout the virtual currency's lifetime, and as the value of a Bitcoin increases, so does the risk in using exchanges.