NFTs, or non-fungible tokens, enable users to buy things online like digital video assets in games, video clips, and other virtual products. Sales using NFTs have been in the billions for video games alone. It's like digital currency akin to bitcoin, and Leo thinks it could be the new investment frontier.
Jim saw a bitcoin ATM machine at the mall. What is it? Leo says that you give it cash, and it then generates a bitcoin and transfers it to your digital wallet or using an app like Coinbase. Or you can give it your bitcoin wallet ID, and it would then transfer it to that account. But Leo doesn't really trust them because you're giving it literal cash, and trusting it puts the equivalent in bitcoin into your account.
CryptoCurrency continues to rise in value as more people seek to acquire it and use it to pay for goods and services. Currently, BitCoin's value is over $55,000 as of 2/21. Leo says that bitcoin miners will only be able to generate 21 million bitcoin before it comes to an end as far as BitCoin is concerned. And the closer users get to that amount, the harder it will be to mine bitcoin, which is achieved by solving complicated mathematical problems. But that isn't stopping bitcoin miners from trying.
One of the most prolific digital criminals has retired. Darknet crime lord Joker's Stash has decided to cash in his chips and close down his site that infamously posted millions of credit card numbers and bilked users out of billions in bitcoin. The move angered many other criminals who still have credit on the site to spend, once again proving there is no honor among thieves.
Jessie has some old computers and he wants to know if it would be worth it to put them to work bitcoin mining. Leo says as time goes on, it keeps getting harder to generate bitcoin, because miners need a lot of horsepower and electrical power to do it. The amount of energy that it would take to create one bitcoin would be more than bitcoin is currently worth.
Mike's Coinbase Bitcoin wallet has a corrupted IP address to it and he's worried his wallet has been hacked. Leo says he can't have two IP addresses on an account. Leo says that the ISP may be at fault here and Mike should log into his Coinbase wallet and make a screenshot of the error messages. Then he should contact his ISP and show them the evidence. They need to fix it. Leo also says he should change his Coinbase password just in case. It's possible something nefarious is afoot.
George keeps hearing about BitCoin and how much the price keeps going up. What gives it that value? Leo says nothing but sheer belief. BitCoin is crypto currency, which are essentially digital dollars that don't exist outside of a computer. You can't really take it and spend it at the local store unless the store takes it. But even a dollar bill isn't really anything but a fiat currency that the government says it's worth. The value of a dollar, or any other currency, changes all the time. It's fluid. So BitCoin is just an extreme version of that.
Elia wants to know what Leo thinks about online currency, or crypto currency. Leo says to understand crypto currency, you have to understand how monetary systems work. Paper money represents the value it carries, but it isn't gold. It's called a "fiat currency." In the case of our dollar, it's backed by the government. But currencies don't have to be official government currency. "Disney Dollars" are currency at Disneyland.
Dale has invested in BitCoin, but he forgot his password. He requested it from CoinBase, but now Google Authenticator won't work. Coinbase's support is overwhelmed so he can't get in. So what can he do? Leo says that Bitcoin is rampant with fraud and that's why the Google Authenticator is used. But it may be that his account has been hacked. He may just have to be patient in contacting Coinbase to get them to reset it. But he shouldn't have an authenticator to reset a password.
With a current value of over $14,000 per, Bitcoin has skyrocketed in value in the last month, but has also dropped dramatically in the last few days. Leo says the Bitcoin craze reminds him of the Holland Tulip Craze of the 1600s, where tulips became all the rage, prompting people to even offer land for a single tulip bulb. Bitcoin is just like that.