Cryptocurrency – also spoken briefly by many as “Crypto”, is an entirely new revolution of money. Crypto has made a huge impact on many businesses about how they should think, revolutionize, and reconstruct. Even now, those who are not that familiar with the term “Crypto” may have heard of something called “Bitcoin” – A coin that is worth more than half a hundred thousand dollars. The mystery of this token remained until today when its price started to stun the world by how much it’s worth now on the market. Some people have made millions of dollars thanks to this profitable investment. This makes the urge to become rich by billions of people build up even more, especially when they discovered the fact that 10 years ago, Bitcoin was only worth 1$ per coin. It is unimaginable if someone bought 50 Bitcoins 10 years ago based on a random choice, then became a millionaire 10 years later. It sounds too good to be true, but it did happen.
However, Crypto, like the stock exchange or real estate, requires the investors to possess solid knowledge of how finance works and how the market runs. It’s not about putting in your hard-earned dollars and expecting them to increase in value over the next few years. Crypto is about updating yourself with academic-oriented information, market analysis, patience, financial stability, and a bit of luck in many cases. Therefore, from what is being said throughout such a long introduction, it’s necessary to say, Crypto is both an opportunity and a trap. Either evolve depending on what type of investor you are: A wise one or a bandwagon individual.
If you’re only a starter and want to learn just the basic examples of Crypto, this article is for you. We shall begin.
You may think about Crypto as going into a casino. You use real money to exchange tokens to participate in all the activities. The same concept applies to Crypto.
To explain in a more technical direction, Crypto is a virtual currency used by many people as a medium exchange for goods and services (Since many companies have started to apply Crypto as part of their transactions). Crypto can also be exchanged for fiat money by using a third-party broker. Service and exchange fees are collected when using this type of service.
The world of Crypto is enormous. For those who are not familiar with this niche, Bitcoin might be the only coin you know. However, other coins are popular among buyers such as Ethereum (ETH), Litecoin (LTC), Binance Coin (BNB), Stellar (XLM), Polkadot (DOT), etc. If you have no clues of where to start, I’d suggest learning the origin of these coins first to confirm their legitimacy yourself. After that, it shouldn’t be too hard to learn about the market trends and market analysis to make the right decisions.
Crypto is managed under a technology called Blockchain which is also the name of a company that created Bitcoin. Blockchain, just like any other innovative technology such as The internet, Artificial Intelligence, … is a technological solution that helps solve most problems when it comes to digitized activities. Unlike any other technology, the information managed by Blockchain remains forever and cannot be changed under any circumstance. The vision that Blockchain brings to the world is safety, transparency, and automation. Such technology attracts the attention of many businesses who look forward to achieving those 3 elements for their business.
Crypto has exchange platforms for investors to keep track of the market and sell and buy coins. Some well-known platforms suitable for preferences include Binance, Coinbase Exchange, FTX, Kraken, etc. If you’re looking for a Vietnamese exchange base, there are options for you to choose from as well. Binance, VBTC, BitcoinVN are the 3 most-used exchange platforms that many Vietnamese investors use to buy and sell Crypto.
Another worth noticing characteristic of Crypto is that many people look at Crypto as an Outlaw, meaning the whole Crypto market is not under the control of any government or banks. That comes with advantages and disadvantages, which we will discuss in the next part of this article.
The advantages and disadvantages of Crypto
All forms of investment bear on itself profits and risks. It’s undeniable that every investor must be a wise one to control their behaviour. Investing is not only about what you know but also about how you manage to shift your mind away from the bandwagon effect.
Until you can decide what the good part for you in this kind of investment is, a few listed advantages and disadvantages will help you visualize what you may expect in the early phases for better preparation. Most of the time, drawbacks and the benefits of Crypto, or investing in general, vary depending on the individual. Make sure you combine this information with your situation to draw out the best conclusions.
Crypto is government-free: A government-free investment is an opportunity for investors, especially the profit investors earn later on when their coin increases in value. Since it’s not controlled by any official institutes, the interest received afterwards will not be manipulated by a third party. There are times when coins may rise to 1000% in value and even more than that amount depending on the fluctuation of the market at that time. Investors will receive the full profit bag without any deduction and only have to pay a small exchange fee to convert their crypto into money in the bank.
Crypto is decentralized: Following the government-free trait of Crypto, decentralization is another strength that makes Crypto a lone ranger among other types of investment. Crypto is not controlled by any third party. Therefore, every transaction occurs directly between the buyer and the seller. Decentralization also remains the stability of the flow and the coin worth. Inflation is unlikely to happen within this type of market due to the high demands of cryptocurrency encouraging the price increase.
Easier transactions: The traditional method of transaction is difficult at times. Especially when carrying out a transaction overseas, the paperwork and the time involved in the process are complicated and time-consuming. With Crypto, a transaction is done within just a few simple steps on your smartphone.
Even though bearing on itself the trait of being a government-free market, such leaves Crypto a vulnerable environment to hackers and internet scams.
Crypto is an encrypted system that allows digital transactions. It’s not the money you hold by your own hands and give to other people physically, with your eyes witnessing that the money has already reached the right destination. Online transactions like Crypto happen entirely towards an invisible network. If the exchange platform isn’t a highly secure system, it may appeal to hackers to exploit this vulnerability of the platform and steal the information of any parties involved. Especially when Crypto doesn’t have any official third party to be responsible for such a flaw, the money will be gone forever.
Still, anyone that seriously considers joining Crypto may partially feel relieved knowing that every Crypto exchange base always updates its system to enhance security. But it all comes down to studying your craft before jumping into the real market. Do your research carefully before spending big money on Crypto.
Crypto is illegal in many countries. Many exchanges occur under the table. Even though the purpose of Crypto is not meant for illegal activities, such an outlaw like itself also gives internet criminals the opportunities to avoid the law. Other than that, there are very few regulations related to Crypto in many countries, even Vietnam. Therefore, you won’t receive any protection or very little support from the officials if you are tricked into scams or obtaining property by fraud.
The high consumption of energy of Crypto costs a lot of money to sustain. There’s a term called “Crypto miner” meaning the person who mines Crypto and earns money from mining it professionally. For the pros to be able to mine as many coins as possible, they may have to spend a couple of thousands to hundred thousands of dollars to build for themself a set of electric devices that work 24/7 solely for mining coins. Regarding the money for electricity, if you’re not willing to take the risk, the money to invest into something like this may cost way higher than the money you earn. Being a miner isn’t as easy as many people mentioned. Most look at it as “sitting in one place and doing nothing” kind of work. However, the reality doesn’t support that opinion.
The Crypto market in Vietnam
The Crypto market in Vietnam is quite dynamic. It stood 2nd among the countries that had the highest numbers of Crypto owners in 2020.
However, does the country support the circulation of Cryptocurrency? Has it been an official payment method or it’s just an under-the-table activity in Vietnam? Many people have been wondering these same questions when talking about Crypto in Vietnam.
If I were to be asked whether Cryptocurrency is allowed in Vietnam, I would tell everyone that Crypto is illegal in Vietnam because no services here owning an official business registration certificate accepts payments in Crypto, which proves the evidence that says Crypto is illegal in all matters.
To take it precisely on the regulation aspect, the fact that Crypto is illegal or not is still ambiguous. Since 2017 when Crypto was finally introduced to Vietnam, no official regulations have been made to emphasize its legalization. However, the opposition of the Vietnamese government to this form of virtual currency could be seen through the Official Letter No. 5747/NHNN-PC dated July 21, 2017: Transactions that are done related to Crypto, if recognized by The State Bank of Vietnam, will be given a fine between 50 million VND – 100 million VND depending on the value of the transaction. Also, there are no legal documents on whether Cryptocurrency counts as a permitted asset/property in Vietnam.
Even though there are still no official regulations related to the validity of Cryptocurrency in Vietnam, the Vietnamese government started to take action to whatever activities related to the use of this virtual currency. In 2018, the Prime Minister of Vietnam gave out directive No. 10/CT-TTg to SBV, the Ministry of Public Security, and the Ministry of Finance about the increase of cryptocurrency activity management. This aimed to regulate, deal with, and prevent cryptocurrency transactions. This was a good move from the government of Vietnam because the Cryptocurrency market was still very vulnerable back in the day, which attracted Internet frauds and illegal activities to take place. Although the Cryptocurrency market seems to solve a lot of complicated matters of any economy and help establish a no-frills environment where it doesn’t take too much time to, for say, carry out an international transfer, it’s an outlaw platform appealing to those who tend to manipulate a vulnerable system to profit.
Despite having not been legalized, there was a very interesting case related to Crypto in Vietnam that showed the consideration for Crypto to become an official asset in the book. A Crypto robbery took place a year ago, with 16 defendants involved in the 35 billion VND robbery and was facing the charge of “theft of assets/property”. The 35 million VND that was stolen turned out to be Bitcoin. Even though there has yet been any official regulation stating the legalization of Cryptocurrency as assets/property, the charge was issued by the law to the robbers. This provoked a constant debate whether Cryptocurrency would be accepted as valid assets/property in the future or not.
Decision 942 was issued to establish an e-government planned to be officially completed in 2030. Even though this decision mentions a virtual currency that can be potentially enacted in 2030, it is unclear whether the mentioned virtual currency is Cryptocurrency or a different type of such. Vietnam is still working on the appropriate policy for this matter. In March 2021, the Vietnamese officials created a group of researchers to dig deeper into virtual assets and virtual currency, with the hope to provide a better management solution.
Crypto platforms in Vietnam
The best-known Crypto exchange base in Vietnam is VBTC, known as the first Bitcoin exchange base ever opened in Vietnam.
VBTC belongs to Blinktrade, which is an international platform for Crypto trading. Following the concern whether Crypto is illegal in Vietnam or not, many people also wonder how VBTC can legally function in Vietnam. According to the media, VBTC signed up for a business registration certificate under the category of “Distributing other retail products”. Since Crypto wasn’t recognized as the official currency, the CEO of VBTC confirmed that the company isn’t managed by the State Bank of Vietnam and the Ministry of Finance.
Binance is also widely used by many Crypto owners in Vietnam. Other platforms that could be named include Remitano, Huobi, VNDC, Gate.io, KuCoin, CoinBase, OKEx, Poloniex, Vicuta, and VCC.
(Keep in mind that the article only aims to list out different platforms for preferences and doesn’t aim to invite or encourage readers to try or proceed with any transactions on these platforms. As a wise investor, make sure to invest your money once you have gained enough needed information and knowledge because, until the end, you are the one who is responsible for your own money).
The potential of Crypto in Vietnam
As mentioned earlier, the Vietnamese legislation has made zero preferences to cryptocurrency transactions.
However, since the main concern of Vietnam is to prevent cyber-hack and online thefts, Vietnam began to put some effort into exploring the Crypto niche to come up with ultimate solutions for this matter.
Vietnam has made some innovative steps to embrace cashless payment. For example, it has formed a research group focusing on Cryptocurrency so that it can entirely achieve regulating the industry in the future. Vietnam also started to embrace cashless pay methods like QR codes and e-wallets (such as Momo, ZaloPay, Moca, etc). As cryptocurrency is currently the ultimate solution that provokes the potential of cashless payment to its fullest, Vietnam looks forward to studying it more to form a platform that helps secure people’s safety during COVID. Moreover, since Crypto circulates under blockchain technology, it embraces these 3 criteria: Automation, safety, and transparency.
As measured in 2020, more than a million people in Vietnam already started using Crypto. This amount is expected to increase by 30 times by 2030.
For now, there’s not much to mention since the government of Vietnam is still taking some early steps to study this industry. Still, the rich number of Crypto owners in Vietnam does support the fact that Vietnam will likely remain as one of the top countries having a strong market and potential economic growth soon.
Advice for beginners
Crypto, just like any other investment niche, requires you to learn carefully how it functions before putting in real money for profit. I’m not so much of a Crypto expert. I’m only a person who is constantly updating myself with different types of investments to diversify my portfolio. I haven’t made any profit so far and I’m not encouraging you to join Crypto. However, as someone who has done my research and physically interacted with this type of market, I began to be aware of certain things that even you could find helpful at some points:
Don’t listen to anyone: Investing is about doing your research properly and experiencing the reality to avoid mistakes. There’s only one way to get it done and it’s by practising your craft. Even the closest friends of yours just made a couple of thousands of dollars from a new coin and invited you to put your money into it, don’t do what they told you to do. You may use those words as preferences but it shouldn’t be where your decisions land. You only decide when you have enough data to back up your decisions, and you only decide when you know it’s the right thing to do.
Be prepared that you may lose what you spent: There will always be risks when you use your money to invest. And there are a lot of things you can do to reduce the risks. If you have had for yourself the right knowledge, the right market analysis, and the right people to trust, the chance to hit the jackpot will increase. However, risks will always exist. Even just 1% of risk can still likely happen once a sudden fluctuation comes to the market. So, only put in what you’re willing to lose.
Be wise when calculating your budget. Separating different items and seeing what amount of money you can use to spend on an investment are the 2 basic steps to get started.
Investing is about walking on a long road: Except for the expert investors, you and I are the people who will always take the long route. The goal of many expert investors is to defeat the market, while ours are simply making a bit extra money besides our job to secure our financial situation.