LocalBitcoins | Is LocalBitcoins safe?

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LocalBitcoins is a platform buy and sell sale and purchase of Bitcoin between individuals. Payments can be made by wire transfer, PayPal, CB, cash, Western Union and so on. The “local” side is rather funny. I guess it’s reassuring to know that the guy who sells you Bitcoins is in the same city as you and you can meet him and pay him in cash. It is a bit CraigsList of Bitcoin and it is accessible to beginners.

LocalBitcoins, an atypical exchange platform

The mission of the site is clear: to allow its economies to be placed in the bitcoin, “free from political uncertainties and arbitrary devaluations”.

But first of all, it is important to understand that LocalBitcoins is a bit special. Because the site does not sell Bitcoins.

LocalBitcoins is a sort of bit-exchange platform from particular to particular.

There are two types of transactions:

  • online, ie remotely
  • which induce a physical encounter between two individuals

Thus, unlike most of its competitors, it will link buyers and sellers of Bitcoins. These will then be able to agree among themselves, and carry out transactions. You will thus be able to buy Bitcoins without verification of identity.

Want to have an example?

You can find individuals, residing near you, who wish to sell you Bitcoins against a payment by Paypal. And each user can “place an ad” anonymously – being identified by a pseudonym. For example: “I exchange 1000 € in cash against X Bitcoins in Lyon”.

You can easily find these proposals using a search engine, which is particularly easy to use.

You will find offers depending on:

  • of the amount you wish to buy or sell
  • of the currency used
  • of the payment means
  • the degree of authentication required by the user (validation text message and / or identity document)

Local Bitcoins basic details

It’s important to know who you’re dealing with when buying cryptocurrencies.

FeatureValue
Launched in 2012
Country Finland
Founder Nikolaus Kangas
Fees 1% + seller fee

How to register on LocalBitcoins?

Registration on the site is very simple. First click on this link (it opens in a new tab). Then click on the “Sign up free” button.

You will then have to communicate certain information: username, e-mail and password.

Our advice: do not hesitate to use a dedicated e-mail, in order to benefit from increased confidentiality.

You must then confirm your e-mail address. To do this, click on the link in the e-mail “[localbitcoins.com] Confirm your email to complete your registration”.

Your account is now verified. In addition, you have a wallet hosted on the platform to receive your Bitcoins (be sure to transfer your tokens to an external wallet).

How to buy and sell altcoins?

LocalBitcoins payment methods

This is one of the main assets of LocalBitcoins: the variety of payment methods offered. Indeed, each of the sellers of Bitcoins present on the platform can decide to accept the methods of payment that it wishes. So you can choose your seller depending on how you can pay for it.

There are all these payment methods (this list is not exhaustive):

  • Cash (by mail or in person)
  • PayPal
  • Bank Transfer
  • Western Union
  • etc.

The only method of payment that is not offered? This is the payment by credit card. If you want to buy Bitcoins with your credit card, do not hesitate to visit a site like Coinbase.

LocalBitcoins fees and transactions

The site only charges reduced commissions: only 1% per transaction. But it’s actually more complex.

Because you will pay a higher fee, buying your Bitcoins above market prices. The difference between their “normal” prices and the price at which you will buy them will fall into the pockets of sellers. They are free to offer Bitcoins at the prices they want – and try to make them a lucrative activity.

And you will notice that prices tend to climb for some payment methods ..

An example ? Bitcoins purchased with Paypal often cost a lot more.

The reason is simple: the seller takes a risk. The buyer could perfectly send a payment through Paypal, receive his bitcoins, and then attempt to cancel the transaction – in order to recover his sums. And once the bitcoins have been sent to the buyer, the seller will have no recourse to recover them.
This is not limited to Paypal – this is the case for most payment methods that can be “reversed”: they put a risk on sellers.

In order to guarantee the security of the sellers, LocalBitcoins recommends to them to privilege means of payments difficult (if not impossible) to reverse, such as bank transfers or the exchange of cash.

LocalBitcoins buying limits

Unlike the majority of exchange sites, LocalBitcoins imposes no limits. You can buy as many Bitcoins as you like, without having to restrict yourself.

Note however that the “big” sellers will necessarily have to verify their identity.

Conclusion

You will understand: we recommend LocalBitcoins.

This exchange will allow you to buy Bitcoins near you, sometimes anonymously. You will be able to find reliable sellers thanks to a well-thought-out evaluation system.

The diversity of means of payment is the other strong point of LocalBitcoins – which offers more than 60 methods to buy your Bitcoins. You will not have any excuse for not going!

8 Total Score
LocalBitcoins Review: Excellent

I recommend LocalBitcoins - which could be nicknamed "Craigslist of the Bitcoin".The site will allow you to buy and sell Bitcoins by putting you in contact with individuals (via Paypal, bank transfer, cash, ...).And your anonymity is guaranteed, since many vendors do not ask for your identity to be verified.

Ease of use
6
Privacy
9
Fees
8
Security
8
Reputation
9
PROS
  • One of the only sites to buy anonymously Bitcoins
  • More than 60 payment methods
  • Transaction security is assured: LocalBitcoins acts as a trusted third party between you and other users
CONS
  • The cost is higher than on other platforms - especially when you want to order Bitcoins in cash or with Paypal
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