Think you'll never need Bitcoin? Think again. Though the virtual currency isn't yet mainstream, the technology at the heart of Bitcoin is undeniably powerful. Bitcoin has carved a few niche markets, including futurists, hackers, and black market profiteers.
Fueled by Bitcoin, one of those markets, ransomware, is on the rise. Danny Palmer, writing for ZDNet, reported recently:
Ransom demands are typically made in Bitcoin, the cryptographic digital currency based on Blockchain distributed ledger technology, which offers a secure, often untraceable, method of making and receiving payments — a perfect currency for those who want their financial activities to remain hidden.
READ: Cybersecurity spotlight: The ransomware battle (Tech Pro Research report)
All business is subject to hack attack. Though best practices always advise against paying ransom, sadly, companies are sometimes (and sometimes not) forced to fork over Bitcoin to decrypt essential files.
Should business—SMBs, startups, and enterprise—own or trade Bitcoin? Why or why not? Respond to the survey below and leave your thoughts in the comment section.
- Gallery: 10 innovative blockchain startups poised to revolutionize business (TechRepublic)
- Digital currency is poised to reinvent how startups are funded, led by Chroma Fund(TechRepublic)
- 10 things you should know about Bitcoin and digital currencies(TechRepublic)
- Pay with Bitcoin: 10 of the most interesting places to spend it (TechRepublic)
- Bitcoin an official commodity: US trade commission (ZD Net)
- How Bitcoin helped fuel an explosion in ransomware attacks (ZD Net)
Dan Patterson has nothing to disclose. He does not hold investments in the technology companies he covers.
Dan is a Senior Producer for CNET and CBS News.