Lebanon is in a deep economic crisis, and the country’s citizens are exploring alternatives to traditional banking that would free them from the strict restrictions imposed by their government. As the world’s largest and oldest cryptocurrency, Bitcoin is an obvious choice, but there are some hurdles to overcome if you would like to purchase it from Lebanon.
What Is Bitcoin?
Bitcoin is a cryptocurrency created by an unknown person called Satoshi Nakamoto in 2008. Since then, its market capitalization has reached an all-time high of more than $1 trillion, which is roughly half the value of all cryptocurrencies combined.
The main aspect that separates Bitcoin from other similar projects is the technology behind it, called Blockchain. Bitcoin’s blockchain is basically a public distributed database of transactions, which are verified by network nodes through cryptography, ensuring their immutability. In other words, once a transaction is recorded, it can’t be retroactively changed.
The process of transaction verification is referred to as mining, and it requires a substantial amount of computing power. Those who participate in it are rewarded with newly created bitcoins and transaction fees. If you would like to understand how Bitcoin actually works under the hood, then we highly recommend you watch the video explanation by 3Blue1Brown.
As a user, you just need to know that Bitcoin is a convenient (albeit volatile) alternative to fiat currency, allowing you to quickly and securely send and receive payments across borders without having to go through any third party.
How To Buy Bitcoin In Lebanon?
Unfortunately, buying Bitcoin in Lebanon is not as easy as buying Bitcoin in most other countries. Due to the United States embargo over Lebanon and the banking restrictions imposed by Lebanese authorities, almost all reputable cryptocurrency exchanges refuse to serve Lebanese customers.
While you could technically create an account on exchanges like Coinbase, Kraken, or Gemini, features such as account verification and fund deposits (as well as crypto purchases) will not work even if you have an international credit card or bank account abroad.
Binance In Lebanon
One of the very few respected exchanges that does offer its services in Lebanon is called Binance.
Binance is an excellent option for buying Bitcoin as well as hundreds of altcoins (including the popular Dogecoin). Creating an account is fairly straightforward. Use your email or Lebanese phone number to sign up, fill in your basic information, and upload your Lebanese passport or ID card to complete the verification process. Once your account has been verified (this process may take a couple of hours), you’ll be able to make your first Bitcoin purchase. It’s important to mention that you will only be able to make purchases using a “fresh” dollar account credit/debit card.
If cryptocurrency exchanges aren’t your thing, there are at least three alternative options available, so let’s take a closer look at them.
As we’ve already explained, Bitcoin makes it possible for any two people to trade directly without the involvement of a centralized financial authority. This means that you can simply find someone in Lebanon who already has BTC and purchase some from the person in exchange for cash.
You can find local traders on peer-to-peer Bitcoin marketplaces like:
Alternatively, you can join a Bitcoin community such as @lbbtcm on Telegram and find someone willing to trade with you that way. Just make sure to verify the person’s trading reputation to avoid getting scammed.
If person-to-person trading seems a bit too daunting to you, then you should consider buying BTC from a retailer like Bitcoins Lebanon, BTCLeb, or CryptoLeb. Lebanese Bitcoin retailers typically accept payments in person or via Western Union, and they offer professional customer support to put your worries at ease during the buying process.
Mine Them Yourself
New BTC is issued as a reward to those who verify Bitcoin transactions by solving extremely complex computational math problems in a process called mining. To participate in Bitcoin mining, you actually don’t need any specialized equipment, but don’t expect to earn any significant amount of BTC unless your computer is extremely powerful — the competition these days is simply too steep.
While you can increase your profitability by investing in specialized mining hardware and joining a mining pool, which is basically just a large group of miners who evenly split their rewards, you may not be able to break even unless you have access to free or nearly free electricity.
Tips To Avoid Bitcoin Scams
Money attracts scammers — that’s how it’s always been. The cryptocurrency space is, unfortunately, full of them, so you really need to take some time to learn how to protect yourself. Here are five tips to help you avoid Bitcoin scams:
- Verify, verify, verify: You should never send money to anyone you don’t 100% trust. Remember that screenshots can be faked, email addresses spoofed, and security credentials stolen.
- Don’t put all your eggs in one basket: If this is your first time buying Bitcoin, we recommend you start small and avoid putting all your eggs in just one basket. That way, you won’t lose all your money even if you make a serious mistake and fall for a scam.
- Use two-factor authentication: When trading BTC online, always enable two-factor authentication whenever possible. 2FA is the most effective protection against password-based attacks.
- Never let anyone remotely use your computer: Even if you really could use IT support, we strongly urge you to not let anyone remotely access your computer unless you know the person and fully trust them.
- Buy a hardware wallet: A hardware wallet is a special device that resembles a USB thumb drive. It lets you store your Bitcoin private keys in a secure manner, protecting them against malware and hackers.
Unfortunately, people who live in Lebanon don’t have the same options when it comes to buying Bitcoin as people living in most other countries. But having fewer options to choose from is still better than having no options at all. Peer-to-peer trading, for example, is easy to get into, making it a great choice for those who would like to bet on Bitcoin’s steadily growing (at least in the long-term) price.
If you found this guide helpful, you’ll definitely want to check out our beginner’s guide on how to make money with NFTs (Non-Fungible Tokens).
5 Gaming Cryptos That Will Explode In 2023
Because the gaming metaverse is still in its infancy, gaming cryptos are emerging at a rapid rate, and these 5 promising projects could play important roles in it.
If there’s one segment of the cryptocurrency market that has been doing exceptionally well this year, it’s gaming cryptos. Platforms such as Decentraland (MANA) don’t need an introduction anymore because they’ve already attracted plenty of attention from seasoned crypto investors and regular fans of video games alike.
Even large video game publishers, such as Electronic Arts and Ubisoft Entertainment, believe that the most popular games in the future will be backed by blockchain technology, allowing their players to prove ownership of virtual assets and trade them as non-fungible tokens (NFTs).
Because the gaming metaverse is still in its infancy, gaming cryptos are emerging at a rapid rate, and the most promising projects could play important roles in it. By betting on them early, you can see a huge return on your investment down the road.
Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only, and it does not include any financial advice. Please remember to always do your own research before investing into any gaming cryptos. If you’re new to the crypto world, and would like to start your trading journey, we highly recommend you consider using a trusted exchange platform like Coinbase or Binance.
#1 – UFO Gaming (UFO)
Despite its recent slump, UFO Gaming has experienced an enviable growth this year, making the earliest investors extremely happy.
UFO Gaming is building something called a dark metaverse, which it describes as a closed-loop ever-expanding ecosystem consisting of play-to-earn games, breedable in-game NFTs, earning virtual land, and other aspects.
Right now, UFO Gaming has a single game, Super Galactic, but more games are coming in the near future. Thanks to the unique rating system, more active players can earn bigger rewards and access more challenging game content.
Recently, UFO Gaming branched off into the eSports territory by launching its own Apex Legends Tournament hosted by Twitch streamers Apryze and Nokokopuffs. The prize pool worth a whopping $10,000 immediately attracted plenty of attention, and that’s exactly what this gaming crypto needs to succeed.
#2 – Vulcan Forged (PYR)
Vulcan Forged is like an incubator for blockchain games. This community-based project supports developers by providing the resources, infrastructure, and money needed to create world-class blockchain games.
The platform has its own thriving NFT marketplace and a tool that allows for instant dApp and NFT creation, and they’re both powered by the PYR settlement, staking, and utility token.
What’s really interesting about Vulcan Forged is the fact that 10 percent of the entire PYR supply goes into the LAVA pool. Players can then earn LAVA tokens by simply playing and engaging with any Vulcan Forged-made or hosted game. Best of all, the more LAVA tokens a player has, the more PYR airdrops they can receive each month.
#3 – Merit Circle (MC)
Merit Circle isn’t your typical crypto game. Instead, it’s an innovative project whose goal is to maximize value accrual across different games in the metaverse.
To be more precise, Merit Circle is a branching decentralized autonomous organization (DAO) whose members work together to participate in play-to-earn games and precious NFTs so they can collectively earn money.
The project has partnered with many leaders in the play-to-earn industry, giving its members access to exclusive rewards and emerging games. If you would like to increase your earning potential, then you can join Merit Circle as a scholar by applying for a scholarship on the official Discord server.
Understandably, Merit Circle focuses on the largest games out there, such as Axie Infinity, which are often prohibitively expensive for new players to get into on their own. However, Merit Circle members can create subDAOs, each representing a specific play-to-earn game. All subDAOs then contribute to the mainDAO.
It can be difficult to understand everything RMRK is trying to do because the scope of the project is pretty large.
What you should know is that it’s built on the Kusama blockchain, Polkadot’s canary network, and designed to enable NFT creators to put together and build a system of arbitrary complexity by combining the so-called NFT legos.
These NFT legos can own other NFTs and change their output media by equipping them with additional building blocks. For example, imagine that you own two NFTs: a virtual dog and a fancy dog collar. RMRK’s NFT legos make it possible to put the collar on the virtual dog to create what’s essentially an upgraded version of the original dog NFT, increasing its value.
If you would like to learn more about RMRK, you can join the RMRKable Hacktoberfest. Besides learning a lot of useful information, you can also earn $50,000 in prizes. Registration ends on November 30, 2021, so you better hurry up to secure your virtual seat.
#5 – Aavegotchi (GHST)
As the name of this gaming crypto suggests, the project is inspired by the wildly popular Japanese digital pet handheld game, Tamagotchi. Just like Tamagotchi, Aavegotchi lets you take care of a virtual pet, but there’s a lot more to it than that.
Each Aavegotchi virtual pet is an ERC-721 non-fungible token that has a cryptocurrency stake inside. This stake comes from tokens staked through the Aave DeFi lending protocol. Players earn interest depending on which token is staked inside their Aavegotchies.
Of course, Aavegotchies also have a certain rarity value, which reflects everything from the uniqueness of their names to their traits to equipped wearables within the Aavegotchi universe.
Aavegotchi has recently partnered with Blackpool, a quantitative hedge fund for the NFT, so the future is looking bright, indeed.
Wrapping Things Up
By looking at the top 5 gaming cryptos currently available, we feel that 2023 will be a huge year for blockchain gaming. Developers from around the world are working on extremely promising projects that implement many features cryptocurrency enthusiasts and gamers have been dreaming about for years, and major corporations see the growing demand and want to be part of this exciting space.
You can be part of it too. All you need to do is recognize the opportunity and join the right project early on.