Everything You Need to Know About Digital Currency

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Digital currency, also known as cryptocurrency, is a global currency around the world. It is an independent way to generate and transfer money without the use of centralized banks. This means that all digital currencies are exempt from government interference.

While cryptocurrencies sound like they make life easier to buy and sell goods, as well as transfer funds, it is not without its drawbacks. One of the biggest issues surrounding digital currency today is the potential for it to be hacked.

But there are many reasons why digital currency is beneficial, that is why we’ve come up with some pros and cons for using this type of currency.

The Pros to Using Digital Currency

  1. Faster Transactions

When it comes to making large purchases like buying a car or a home, there are many steps you must go through before the transaction can be complete. These steps can be getting approval from a bank or paying for a lawyer. But with digital currency, you can make such transactions immediately without the need for a middle-man.

  1. Constant Payment Tracking

Traditionally, when you use a check to make a purchase or wire money to someone, you can only see where that money is every three days, using a banks systems. This can be an issue as you are never truly sure where your money is at any given time. However, with cryptocurrency that constant wondering is not a concern, as you can track your money every second of the day.

  1. Fraud Protection

If you ever purchased anything online, then chances are you used your credit card to do so.  It’s the only way most people pay for things online, but the problem with doing so is you run the risk of your personal information being stolen. Though by using digital currency, you don’t run that risk as you can send funds directly to whomever you want without ever giving out any information.

  1. Zero Fees

While the money you store in banks is technically yours, banks still need to make a profit for holding onto it for you. That is why they charge fees like ATM fees, transactions fees, and closing fees; there are so many fees sometimes, that it hardly seems fair to have to pay to use your own money. The beauty of cryptocurrency, is the fact that you own it and not the banks. So you never have to pay a fee for using your own money when using digital currency.

  1. Easy Accessibility

Perhaps the best thing about using digital currency is that it’s available to everyone. It’s estimated that over 2 billion people across the globe have access to the internet, either by phone or by computer. This means that every one of those two billion people can start farming for bitcoin if they so wished. And unlike banks or lending companies that require you to pass their evaluation to earn funds, digital currency has no such restrictions. So if you can farm it, you can keep it.

The Cons to Using Digital Currency

  1. High Risk/High Reward System

While cryptocurrency, like bitcoin, has the potential to earn someone a lot in a short amount of time, it also has the unfortunate side effect of being extremely high risk for those farming it. The reason farming digital currency is so high risk is because the price of the coins can change on a dime. One moment you could be sitting on a fortune, and the next you can barely pay for a tank of gas.

  1. Security Issues

Even though digital currency can better protect you from having to use your personal information online, your currency itself is still vulnerable to attacks. There is evidence of this happening as larger corporations farming digital currency have suffered greatly at the hands of hackers. One such company suffered an attack so bad, that they lost nearly $500 million in the process. If larger corporations aren’t safe, who is?

  1. Accessible to Everyone

This is mentioned in our pros section too because universal access makes digital currency a double-edged sword. On one hand, it’s nice that anyone with skill could gain a fortune just from farming digital currency. But on the other hand, this also mean that those involved in criminal activities have access as well. Many authorities are concerned that digital currency is being used to launder money and fund various criminal endeavors.

  1. Impossible to Know the Future

Because digital currency is not controlled by a central governing body, the fate of it is left up in the air. Some countries want to embrace it and have already started developing their own cryptocurrencies. While other countries want to outlaw it all together. Since the cryptocurrency market is prone to so many changes, it’s impossible to know what the future holds for this technology.

Whether we like it or not, it seems like digital currency may be the wave of the future. Since digital currency is rising in popularity, it’s best to know what the pros and cons of this new currency are. Otherwise, we may have a new form of currency and not be aware of the benefits or dangers that come along with it.

Learn How Apple Pay Works

Apple Pay is a convenient way to use money, and many consider it the way of the future. If someone left their wallet at home or want to make a quick buy without having to pull out their wallet and enter a pin, then Apple Pay is the way to go!

It would also help to have an iPhone, hence the name, (sorry Android users), but how does Apple Pay work?

Let’s go over the basics as Apple Pay has several components and options that make Apple Pay seem like another foreign language, especially since in-store purchases, and other factors tend to make it harder for an older generation to understand. However, convenience is what makes Apple Pay so much better to use than standard cash or cards.

So here’s a refresher course of the Apple Pay terminology that will serve as a brief guide:

Apple Pay: In short, Apple Pay is a mobile payment and digital wallet service that was introduced by the Apple company several years ago and has since become a popular method of paying in-store, or online through one’s phone!

Apple Pay Cash: With that out of the way, it is time to differentiate Apple Pay with Apple Pay Cash. Apple Pay Cash is technically part of Apple Pay, but lives in Apple’s iMessage app. All the money a person receives via Apple Pay Cash will live on a virtual card called Apple Pay Cash card.

Wallet: Nope, not the one that lives in most people’s wallet! Instead, this is the name of a digital wallet that is an additional application from Apple, that stores the Apple Pay Cash card, additional credit cards, debit cards, loyalty cards, boarding passes, tickets, and so much more. Basically, a leather holder of cards could easily be replaced by having all digital cards through one’s iPhone.

With that techno jargon out of the way, seeing how Apple Pay works is as easy as getting it set up!

Once someone has linked their bank account to Apple Pay, they then can use their newly created Apple Pay Cash card. Like a debit card, this virtual card can take money, send money, and even place that money from the Apple Pay Cash card to their own bank account.

Through additional, easy set-up, the user could also use the Apple Pay features using an iMessage app, Siri and on that brand-new Apple Watch as well!

Aside from its versatility, there are so many options and ways one could use Apple Pay that makes it feel like the future is now. As a result, here are some ways to get the most out of Apple Pay, and the Apple Pay Cash card!

How To Get The Most Out Of Apple Pay!

Apple Pay makes a standard wallet and pocket obsolete because of the options that could easily be integrated

Say someone is traveling in Japan and wanted to be able to pay without having to transfer cold-hard cash into another currency. Luckily, the Apple Pay revolution has made it possible to pay from one’s iPhone!

Let the cashier (hopefully one is in China or Japan and knows some basics of the language, or if the cashier knows English) know if they’re paying with Suica, iD, or QUICPay.

Simply look for the logo on the card in Wallet. To use the Suica card that’s set as one’s Express Transit card, simply hold the top of the iPhone near the reader!

For a more practical way to get the most out of Apple Pay, anyone with the system can switch cards whenever they want to use a certain credit card instead of the debit for the weekend: Using the Wallet application, switching from the default card to another just takes some verification and finger swipes that makes shuffling out of a real wallet a thing of the past!

At participating stores, people can even receive or redeem rewards by using Apple Pay! Just add the rewards card to the Wallet and use it to pay when activating Apple Pay for the in-store purchase.

However, if someone wants their rewards card to appear automatically for that in-store purchase, simply go to the card, tap, then turn on Automatic Selection. After using the rewards card, Apple Pay switches to the default payment card to pay for the purchase.

Depending on the store, someone can even apply their rewards card and payment card in a single step, or they might need to wait until the terminal or cashier asks for payment. Saving and racking up points with the future could never be easier!

Those who want to get the most of Apple Pay’s payment tracking also have the option to view their last transaction for each credit card or debit card under their Wallet application. They might also get to see the last ten transactions for their cards. Just tap the card, then tap the Transactions tab.

Depending on the bank or card issuer, users might only see transactions made from the actual device. Or, they might see all transactions made from their credit or debit card account, including all Apple Pay devices and plastic cards. That’s one way to assist in budgeting.

With these tips and tricks, figure out how easy it is to pay with Apple Pay and the Apple Pay Cash card!

How To Use Apple Pay Cash In-Store, Online, And Everywhere Else

Now that one understands the many options available to them with their Apple Pay Cash card, it’s time to put the purchasing to the test. Whether online or in-store, here’s what any buyer needs to know:

Apple Pay Cash in-store: Always look for the symbols that indicate that purchases in-store can be done with Apple Pay. Usually it is near the register with the Apple logo, or the little waves next to a hand with a card symbol. The last thing anyone wants to do is try Apple Pay in a place that does not allow it, especially if they had decided to leave their wallet at home because of it!

Apple Pay for online purchases: Like the in-store purchases, Apple Pay also allows digital shoppers to pay within apps. Just locate the symbol or option that allows for Apple Pay and select the card from the Wallet application!

Apple Pay may seem like complicated technology but learning how Apple Pay works and how to use it, the method becomes a more convenient way to pay than cash!

Learn How Google Pay Works

Even though iPhone users have Apple Pay, Android fans won’t have to worry about missing out on the future of paying. Strangely enough, Google Pay was originally called Android Pay, but serves as a dynamic and more convenient way for people to pay through their Google services.

But how Google Pay works is one question people who don’t use Apple Pay may be asking, which is why this comprehensive guide looks to answer that!

How Google Pay works is that it is a mobile payment app that can store credit cards, debit cards, loyalty cards, etc. Google Pay is also accompanied by the Google Wallet app, which is used for sending and requesting money in a similar way that the Apple Wallet does so.

To make things more complicated, Google Wallet has had its name changed to Google Pay Send, which is done to keep it in line with the Google Pay brand.

But before one could begin using Google Pay and Google Pay Send, here is what someone will need to use the service:

  • Google credit card /PayPal account.
  • A supported Google Pay device (non-rooted Android phones using KitKat 4.4 and up, Wear OS watch, or other devices, such as a PC or Mac).
  • An Internet connection.
  • A Google account.

The one down side to Google Pay is that it is not supported on iOS devices for in-store payments. However, downloading Google Pay Send allows the user to send and receive payments using Google Pay in a manner that is like other peer-to-peer payment apps like Square Cash and Venmo.

Without further ado, here’s (step-by-step) how Google Pay works when getting it through an Android mobile device:

  1. Simply download the Google Pay app from the Play Store.
  2. From there, sign in to the Google Pay app and begin adding the preferred cards digitally (be sure to know which companies and card services allow to be transferred onto Google Pay).
  3. When adding cards, first tap on the “Cards” selection button, then tap on the blue plus sign.
  4. Using the phone’s camera, take a picture of the selected card and have Google add it for one’s convenience, or manually enter it in.

Now that it is set-up, how Google Pay works in the real world is the easy part! Just about anywhere with a credit card terminal with the Google Pay symbol can make paying almost anything (loans, shoes, groceries, homes) easier! From there, all someone needs to do is move their phone or watch up to the terminal’s contact point, then wait for the blue check mark indicating that the Google Pay account info has been received!

How Google Pay Works with Other Devices Besides Smart Phones!

Using Google Pay for online shopping is easy too! Just look for websites with a “Buy with Google Pay” symbol and control all that card information from the Google Pay account page, this can be done not only from one’s phone, but through their computer as well! The advantage and ease of use comes from the Google Pay application being linked to the user’s Google account!

People can even link their PayPal to Google Pay to get the security and ease of PayPal when they shop with Google Pay in-store and online.

But how Google Pay Works on a computer may require additional information, so here’s how it works!

Using Google Pay with a Computer to Send Money

  1. Using a computer, go to pay.google.com.
  2. Click Send money.
  3. Enter the amount.
  4. Enter the recipient’s name, email address (if applicable), or phone number.
  5. Check that the amount being sent over and payment method are correct.
  6. Place a memo on the payment (optional)
  7. Click Send.

The same goes with paying a money request!

Using Google Pay with a Computer to Pay a Money Request

  1. Click the link in the email or notification from the Google Pay money request or go to pay.google.com.
  2. Click Activity.
  3. Find the request and click the Pay Now button.

It’s really that easy to integrate Google Pay and Google Pay Send through a computer, but when it comes to knowing how Google Pay works, some may be wondering what to expect in terms of the Google Pay fees.

Google Pay Fees Compared to Other Services

Sure, PayPal may well be the best-known of these peer-to-peer payment services, but it is no longer the only one available to people.  With the Google Pay and Google Pay Send services, and Google Venmo, Square Cash, and Apple Pay Cash.

PayPal has long been the go-to for online shopping, and the fact that it can be used to transfer money between friends is simply a bonus that makes it the clear competition for Google Pay, especially as Google Pay fees do exist in certain circumstances.

However, the benefit comes from how it stacks up with its competitors. Currently, Google Pay fees only function as a 2.9 percent fee, which is equal or less than the likes of Venmo, Paypal and SquareCash. Their max transfer limits also top at $9,999 compared to PayPal’s $10,000.

In fact, looking at Pay Pal, not only does it charge a 2.9 percent fee for money sent from a debit or credit card, it also charges an extra 30 cents on top of all of that!

Depending on which service one uses, there’s plenty to argue on how Google Pay holds up, which is why Google Pay fees could feel like a small price to pay (pun intended) when it comes to convenience and ease of use, especially now since the capabilities of how Google Pay works has been demonstrated!

Is Making Digital Payments on a Cellphone Safe?

In today’s society, almost everything can now be done digitally. You can purchase things online, wire money, even pay bills online. But with an ever-growing digital presence, there come hackers looking to steal your information. If you’re wondering if it’s safe to make these kinds of digital payments on a cellphone, keep reading.

Unfortunately, no matter how much people or companies try, no one is ever completely safe from hackers. Just look at corporations like Target or Sony, these are two companies worth billions and even they were not immune to hackers and cyberattacks. While you may never be 100% immune from cyberattacks, there are still steps you can take to help make sure that your risk is less.

The Risk of Mobile Payments

No system is completely safe from hackers. Even the most sophisticated systems have their vulnerabilities, so even if you use a secure site, you may still run the risk of being attacked.

The following 3 examples show how your information is vulnerable when you use your cellphone to make payments:

  1. Your digital/mobile wallet can be spoofed: With the use of smart phones to make payments, many people have starting using mobile wallets to store their credit and debit cards. This can be a smart idea, as mobile wallet apps use strong encryptions and randomly generated payment tokens to ensure the safety of your information.

But the risk comes when you add multiple cards onto your wallet as well as using an unsecured public network to make payments. By using an unsecured public network, hackers who troll such networks can copy your mobile wallet’s system. So when you enter your card info to make a payment, you’re inadvertently giving hackers your personal and financial information.

  1. Malware can infect your phone: Typically, hackers use malware to take control of computers to steal passwords and other private information from you. However, over the past few years, mobile malware has become a growing threat. Usually, malware shows up as an unwanted ad or link that you click on, but there are some programs out there that are so sophisticated that they can be put into apps.
  2. You can lose your phone: Many people don’t consider this as a potential problem, but it is perhaps the easiest way for someone to get your personal information. If you accidently drop or lose your phone in a public place, then you run the risk of someone finding it. And it’s not just your information that is vulnerable, as your phone will likely have all your contact information, so hackers can try and steal from them as well.

How to Safeguard Yourself When Making Payments on Your Cellphone

Technically, mobile payments might be safer than other traditional payment options. This is because when you make a payment through most apps, you are not required to give your card number or its expiration date. But that does not mean that you are completely safe from hackers.

So to help keep your information safe, we have come up with several options to consider when making payments on your cellphone:

  1. Create strong passwords: Depending on what type of phone you have, there can be multiple ways to unlock your phone. From fingerprint readers, face recognition, and even numerical codes. It’s best that you create a two-password system or a complicated password that only you will know, to keep out any unwanted person.
  2. Use secure networks: Typically, hackers tend to spend time on unsecure networks like the free Wi-Fi provided at hotel lobbies or airports. Because of this, places like these are considered hot zones for your information to be stolen. If you are going to make a digital purchase from your phone, it’s best to wait until you can connect to a more secure network like your home or office.
  3. Download a phone finder app: One of the best ways for your information to be stolen is for you to lose your phone. In order to locate your phone quickly, should you lose or misplace it, it is recommended that you install a phone finder app. By installing this type of app and giving a friend access to it, you can easily track your phone down before the worst happens.

The digital age we live in is quite a wonder. We can do so much online these days that our lives have never been simpler. Although making purchases has never been simpler, thieves have gotten more sophisticated and are now able to steal your information right from your cellphone or computer.

Luckily, there are several ways to stay safe from such predatory behavior. It’s all a matter of being smart on how you use your digital information on a cellphone.

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