Greek Banking Crisis Could be a Boost for Bitcoin

By Gary Cutlack on at

Possible global financial crisis #273 is perhaps about to unfold in Greece, with all manner of people off the news saying that bad things to do with banks and foreign money and Germany and the price of Double Deckers skyrocketing might happen should the Greeks vote yes or no to something this weekend. Politics, eh?

One almost certain winner in the financial insecurity is bitcoin, with the virtual currency looking set to win a few fans in Greece and other stricken economies thanks to the fact that, unlike the banks in Greece, it can't be shut down for our own good when the people that hold our purse strings decide we can't be trusted to do what's best for our own money.

Alternative currencies like bitcoin have two major advantages in times of financial woe -- they're untraceable so you can move your money wherever you like, plus they're decentralised, so it should, theoretically, be impossible for one man -- not even Satoshi Nakamoto -- to shut it down.

Tony Gallippi, co-founder of Bitpay, expects bitcoin to at least triple in value should Greece exit the euro, as punters buy the virtual money in favour of wobbly euros.

The only problem is, bitcoin itself isn't exactly the model of financial stability. You could cash out all your euros and stick your saving in bitcoin, only to find it halving in value overnight, as has happened before in bitcoin exchange land. That and the fact that bitcoin seems to have a habit of mysteriously going missing.

In short, learn how to make things out of wood. You'll always be able to barter DIY for food when all the banks have been burned to the ground and the internet's offline because people are burning telegraph poles to stay warm. [Guardian]

Image credit: Greek protests from Shutterstock