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Let’s talk: Boom or bust



Featured | Leadership | Let's Talk

By Loren Webb

Should businesses be interested in cryptocurrencies?

Do the pros of such influential cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin really outweigh the cons?

The crypto market has been around for just over a decade, and in that time it has continued to exist and thrive despite doubters and critics’ words of warnings.

Some say that the entire market is doomed simply due to a lack of uptake and acceptance. On the other hand, the viewpoint is that the market is finally getting to a stable point and the value is becoming more widely accepted in different industries.

Today our Let’s Talk discussion debates whether cryptocurrency a is ‘boom’ or ‘bust’ concept.


Dr. Isaac Balbin, CEO of Parsl

Transactions are an important aspect for any business, so what if there was an improved method of the current transaction process? Well, cryptocurrency is a great tool to ensure optimal security and privacy for all transactions within businesses both internally and externally.

There are a variety of benefits that come from the use of cryptocurrency. The technology brings low transaction costs, it is fast, permanent and hard to fake which significantly reduces the opportunity for fraudulent activity.

As with anything, there is potential for flaws. The rise of quantum computing is one of the biggest threats facing cryptocurrency. As the computers will be able to achieve data processing of a speed and complexity that current computers cannot, there is the ability to break security currently protecting cryptocurrencies. Having said this, there are many solutions that can be implemented, for example, quantum resistant networks.

Cryptocurrency has great potential to transform the way businesses do business.

Adrian Przelozny, CEO and Founder of Australia’s Leading Cryptocurrency Exchange, Independent Reserve

It’s no secret that crypto can be a volatile investment. However with the right research and due diligence, it makes a lot of sense for business. In fact, there are a number of key advantages for businesses that use crypto as a currency:

  • There are no charge backs. This means that the merchant isn’t at risk for losing their stock and money (and benefits from avoiding all the related headaches).
  • They can’t be blocked by intermediaries such as banks or PayPal.
  • It eliminates unnecessary fees. Banks and online intermediaries may charge a subscription fees and/or very high processing fees.

As a counter to the volatility in crypto, it’s actually very easy to liquidate back to fiat, provided your business is with the right exchange. On top of this, with increasing retail and consumer adoption of crypto, it makes sense for businesses to follow the consumer.

A great example of a business doing extremely well is TravelByBit.com; an Aussie company that accepts crypto for hotel and airline bookings. Overstock out of the US is another good example of a business that helped increase their bottom line by accepting crypto.

Caleb Yeoh, CEO of TravelbyBit

As an online travel booking platform for flights and hotels, cryptocurrency helps us solve two key business problems. Firstly, we can take payments securely from anyone anywhere around the world, with minimal friction of exchange rates and zero risk of credit card fraud. Crypto currency also helps us solve the issue around customer loyalty; we find that there are too many loyalty programs out there and customers are tired and no longer respond to them. On our website travelbybit.com, a customer can book their flights and accommodation and earn rewards directly with bitcoin, a loyalty reward that is instantly useable over the internet and one which in the longer term will grow in value rather than diminish in value like other reward programs.

Craig Nielsen, Vice President, APAC at McAfee

Cryptocurrency has vastly outperformed every major asset since it was mined in 2008—and Bitcoin, the most popular cryptocurrency, has soared to prices in excess of $15,000 during its peak. However, as the value of cryptocurrencies have skyrocketed, so have the risks, and there are significant cons for businesses to be wary of.

As miners need significant computational power to mine cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, some cybercrooks have developed malware to steal computing power from another users’ devices without their consent – a technique termed ‘cryptojacking’ in the cybersecurity world.

A recent McAfee report found ‘cryptojacking’ to be on the rapid rise with a 4000% increase in coin mining malware in 2018 and a 25% increase innew coin mining malware. To prevent falling victim to crypto malware, people and businesses must install comprehensive security software and keep it up-to-date. Consider also downloading a browser extension that can detect cryptomining malware, and remember to avoid risky apps.

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