Published: 23/06/2016 - Updated: 23/06/2016 - Tags: Payment Methods
BitPay is an online payment service that specializes in BitCoin transactions. Based in Atlanta, Georgia, USA, BitPay is the premier payment service for the BitCoin community. Seeing as the BitCoin itself is still a relatively new phenomenon, BitPay itself is a relatively new company. Founded in 2011 by Tony Gallippi and Stephen Pair, the company grew quickly. It only took three years for the company to meet an incredible milestone - $1 million USD processed daily.
BitPay has also received a level of support from corporate giants across a wide variety of industries such as Microsoft, NewEgg, Warner Bros. Records and PayPal. This cooperation has given a certain level of credibility to the young online payment processing company. This credibility has even led to the development of a special open source BitCoin project.
BitPay was first announced in 2011 at a BitCoin conference in Prague, Czech Republic. Founder Tony Gallippi made his announcement to the BitCoin community. From the time that BitPay was launched, the company had over one hundred different merchants that utilized the service.
BitPay’s first major partnership came in 2012 when the company announced that it would be the primary acceptor of BitCoin on the blogging platform, WordPress. WordPress stated that it hoped to increase the Internet’s accessibility for individuals that could not make online payments in the native currency due to political or economic circumstances.
By 2013, BitPay had expanded its clientele to over ten thousand individual merchants. During the same year, BitPay also announced that it had processed a total of 270,830 bitcoins for its clients since its launch only two years earlier. The market value of these BitCoins was over $34 million USD.
BitPay would go on to open two international offices in the coming year, located in the Netherlands and Argentina.
BitPay offers a number of features to its users, one of which is a specialized reloadable debit card that holds the balance of a user’s Bitpay account. In order to make the card usable at standard commercial establishments, the value of the BitCoins on the account is converted to US Dollars. The card is accepted anywhere Visa cards can be used. Users can view the value of available funds on the card by using the BitPay app.
Considering the fact that BitCoin is an entirely digital currency, users should be very security conscious when using the platform. That being said, the digital currency still holds significant risk, even for security-minded individuals.
In September of 2015, BitPay’s CFO was the victim of a spearphising attack that resulted in the loss of his login credentials. The cyber criminals responsible for this attack would go on to steal more than $1.8 million USD worth of BitCoin from BitPay account holders. In the aftermath of the theft, BitPay’s cyber insurance company denied BitCoins claim of theft. This led to a lengthy court battle that did not resolve users’ losses.
Users that want to participate in the BitCoin economy should be well aware of the inherent risks and dangers of using the digital currency.