On Thursday, October 8, what's billed as the first Bitcoin ATM in the region comes to Ocean Beach. The first transactions will begin taking place at a launch party late that afternoon at 4796 Niagara Avenue. The Bitcoin ATM is owned by Coinsource.
Beware. This is online, digital currency — called cryptocurrency — hence is subject to hacking. Some speculate with Bitcoins, and the price can be volatile. For many, Bitcoins are a gambling mechanism, not a store of value. You can carry millions' worth of Bitcoins in your pocket, but if you lose it, it's not like having your credit card filched or copied and used for a big purchase by an identity thief. In such cases, you can often get your money back. That's not true with Bitcoins.
There is a black market for Bitcoins, and they can be used for tax-evasion purposes. They are often used for drug sales because they are difficult to trace. There is always the question of whether a merchant will accept them. Scammers sell fake Bitcoins.