From riding high to being in focus for wrong reasons in India, Bitcoin has now mobile application dedicated to transacting virtual currencies. Cryptocurrency dealer Pluto Exchange announced the launch of the country’s first app-based wallet that enables bitcoin transactions using a mobile number.
“The Pluto Exchange mobile app offers a solution to the coordination problem between payment processors, financial gateways and banks,” said Pluto Exchange founder and Chief Executive Bharat Verma in a press conference.
Users could buy, sell, store and spend bitcoins via a mobile number using a four-digit PIN.
“All other apps already in the market do transactions using bitcoin addresses, which are long and prone to error while copying. Pluto Exchange will change this scenario by enabling transactions using mobile numbers only, which are just 10 digits,” he said.
The app would permit a range of transactions, including payments, remittances, business-to-business commerce, supply chain finance, asset management and trading.
On the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) concern, he said, “The RBI considers bitcoins as de-centralised trading that is completely unregulated..so their status is not clear,” he said.
At present, there are around 15 bitcoin exchanges in India. Recently, Bitcoin values rose around 1,600 percent over the past year and currently range upwards of $15,000.
In India, bitcoins have been trading at more than Rs 10 lakh each, while people are investing amounts ranging from Rs 3,000 to several lakhs of rupees to buy these. According to investigation agencies here, with the demand and price of cryptocurrencies on the rise, cybercriminals have found innovative ways to dupe those looking to invest.
RBI on Cryptocurrencies
Despite cryptocurrencies growth, central banks of many countries like China and Russia have warned against making investments in it. RBI too for the third time (Previously in December 2013 and February 2017) warned people against investing in it.
“Virtual currency is stored in digital-electronic media that are called electronic wallets. Therefore, they are prone to losses arising out of hacking, loss of password, compromise of access credentials, malware attack etc.
Since they are not created by or traded through any authorised central registry or agency, the loss of the e-wallet could result in the permanent loss of the VCs held in them. Payments by virtual currency take place on a peer-to-peer basis without an authorised central agency which regulates such payments,” stated RBI in a statement.
Besides, Income Tax is also reportedly sending notices to investors in cryptocurrencies to pay capital gains tax on the bitcoin investments and trade.