Cyprus Mail
Business Cyprus

Bitcoin to open shop

A COMPANY dealing in bitcoin exchange will soon open stores in Cyprus, according to a statement issued by the company yesterday.

Neo Easycoin said they plan to operate bitcoin transaction shops “to better inform people on what is bitcoin, why it’s the future in monetary transactions and how people can gain access to it”.

The company also plans to operate an online transaction server designed for bitcoin users in Cyprus. The company’s site is neo-easy.com but is currently not operational.

Bitcoin is a peer-to-peer digital currency that functions without a central authority and was first introduced in January 2009 by a person known only as “Satoshi Nakatomo”.

Bitcoins are stored in anonymous “electronic wallets,” or code, and can travel from one wallet to another by means of an online peer-to-peer network transaction.

Bitcoin gathered negative publicity in October when American authorities shut down the online black market ‘Silk Road’, under charges of trading in drugs and illegal weapons. Investigators found that exchanges between Silk Road users were almost exclusively conducted in Bitcoin currency.

In an internal memo uncovered in 2012, the US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) called Bitcoin trading sites “an alarming haven of money laundering and other criminal activities”.

The company’s announcement follows a report last week that the University of Nicosia will accept the digital currency as payment for tuition and other fees. The report made headlines around the world as it’s the first accredited university to accept bitcoin.

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