Bank of Portugal Concerned About Bitcoin ATM Launch

Coinciding with the launch of Portugal's first Bitcoin ATM, the Bank of Portugal warned consumers about the risks of using virtual coins declaring that "virtual currencies are not safe" as they are not supervised or regulated by any central entity in Portugal or the European Union itself.

One of the many problems the BoP sees with Bitcoin is that it cannot be considered a safe currency as there is no certainty that anyone will accept it as a means of payment. The bank added that because there is no fund to protect depositors or investors, end users bear all the risk.

Acknowledging that Bitcoin has been experiencing growth in issuance and acceptance, its relationship with the economy is still limited although central banks are aware of Bitcoin and will keep a close eye on the situation.

Joaquim Lambiza of Bitcoinja attempted to allay the fears of the bank by suggesting users back up their wallet and associated passwords while limiting the amount of bitcoin they carry on their phones. He added that the banks concerns regarding little to no state intervention is precisely the goal of Bitcoin.

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