I started investing in Bitcoin! Here’s 4 Things I learned about buying Bitcoin in Malaysia

On 29th December 2015, I became a proud owner of a bitcoin.

bitcoin in malaysia

Well, to be exact, I own 1.0516 bitcoins. I’m planning to get some more.

Edit 31 Dec 2015: I now own 3.20 bitcoins yay

Edit 29 Jan 2016: 6.88 btcs 🙂

Btw, my wallet code is 13Pmx3xcZA81RKu11Z4iUnWQph5VyA72f2 (in case any of you want to donate 😉

Interested in my journey in buying Bitcoins in Malaysia and what I found out on the way? Read on..

 

I’ve been interested in bitcoins for a while. It’s such a fascinating currency. This is not a ‘what is bitcoin’ article, so if you are new to this, I suggest you read my guide for bitcoin newbies – all you need to know to start.

 

This is what I found out when I first started to get interested in bitcoin. But first, before anything else, you should know that..

Bitcoin is volatile AF

I bought it at about USD420 per bitcoin. It hovered between USD200-300 since January 2015, and was USD300 per bitcoin in November 2015.

This is nothing though. Bitcoin peaked in late 2013 with an astonishing high of USD1100 per bitcoin. Unfortunately, due to the high volatility, it crashed until ~USD200 per bitcoin.

Those who got into Bitcoin really early in the game made some serious money in 2013. Like this man who bought USD27 worth of bitcoins in 2009, forgot about it, and found out its worth USD886,000.

(Jealous)

Here’s a historical chart of bitcoin prices against the USD, credit to bitcoincharts.com

screenshot-bitcoincharts com 2015-12-30 12-02-08

In the (safe) investment world, high volatility is a BIG no-no.

But I am making a calculated risk here. I believe that the Bitcoin price will soar again in the next few years. I can be right, or I can be horribly wrong and lose everything. Bitcoin have lost most of their value before (USD1100 into USD200 in a few short months!), but there’s a few reasons why I think it will make a comeback. I’ll write about that in another article.

Anyway, back to the main story – Things I found out during the process of buying Bitcoins in Malaysia

#1 – There’s very few GOOD resources about Bitcoin in Malaysia

I’m listing all I know:

Yep, that’s all. I quickly realised that most of the information available online are outdated, due to the fast-paced nature of this currency. Your best bet at up-to-date information is through a community.

Of course, read other resources too. I like CoinDesk, r/Bitcoin, r/BitcoinBeginners and r/btc.

#2 – The community is pretty small, but as traders they’re pretty active

Many people buy and sell from LocalBitcoins Malaysia.

Many people buy from bitcoin exchanges because its safest.

The communities in Telegram, Whatsapp and Facebook is active and growing.

If you’re new to bitcoin and don’t know where to start, please read my guide for bitcoin newbies. Check the comment sections too for additional info.

#3 – The safety aspect is a bit.. lacking

I can’t really find local resources that specifically promote digital security so I wrote the complete guide to bitcoin scams (published in CoinGecko). Bitcoin is internet-based – there are measures in place to keep it secure, but you can never be too careful, because some malware or virus can always steal your details and transfer out all your bitcoin.

On top of the safety list should be ‘DO NOT BUY FROM RANDOM INTERNET STRANGERS’. I’m just highlighting this as Malaysians are apparently susceptible to being scammed. There’s already a couple of forum posts where seller was like, hey dudes I’m selling Bitcoins for cheap, come and get it. Then there’s a buyer who replied, DUDE I transferred my money to you where’s my Bitcoin???

Are you kidding me? What lalaland are you living in, transferring money into strangers accounts just like that? People were scammed out of thousands of ringgits.

-_- Use common sense la.

#4 – If you want to buy Bitcoin in MYR, your options are extremely limited 

EDIT: There’s a healthier ecosystem now

The bad news is that many bitcoin buy/sell platforms in Malaysia had their Malaysian bank accounts closed down, so options to buy with MYR is limited. CoinHako and CoinBox all used to offer bitcoin buy/sell service.

  • Buying with MYR (bank transfer to sellers) – Localbitcoin. Make sure to pick a seller with good track record. (note: referral link)
  • Buying with MYR (bank transfer to sellers) – Remitano. Make sure to pick a seller with good track record. (note: referral link)
  • Buying with MYR (bank transfer) – Luno (note: referral link; Get RM5 if buy/sell more than RM250) – formerly Bitx
  • Buying with MYR (bank transfer) – XbitAsia. I’ve not used this option.
  • Buying with MYR (via bitcoin ATM) – Pinkexc Malaysia in Ipoh
  • Buying with Paypal – Wirex (note: referral link; get 25% off plastic cards). Get a virtual card (the first one is free), verify account, then transfer money from Paypal into the card to buy bitcoin
  • Buying with debit/credit card – Cex.io (note: referral link)

Internationally, there’s actually A LOT of bitcoin exchangers and online wallet service providers out there. Hundreds. But the thing is, most of the international service providers only allow you to buy bitcoins if you do bank transfer to their accounts, based outside of Malaysia. I haven’t tried this, so comment if otherwise, but don’t you have to pay absurd charges if you send your money internationally?

I tried to look for places online where I can buy using credit card, but I haven’t found one that support transaction from Malaysia yet. Ah, the general consensus is that it’s hard to buy bitcoins using credit cards and paypal anyway, so there’s that.

EDIT March 2016.  Want to spend bitcoin? Wirex specialises in bitcoin debit card, which what you wanna get to make it easier for you to spend or withdraw your bitcoin when the time comes. As I wrote in my where to spend bitcoin article, there are very few places that accept bitcoin in Malaysia, but millions of shops and ATMs globally will accept the Visa/MasterCard-linked bitcoin debit card. Check out this article for more info – if Wirex can help you solve even one of those problems, you should consider getting one. Disclaimer: I provide work for this company, but I honestly like their products and services.

ProTip: Use my referral link (or click on the image below) to register an account, then install the Wirex app (android, iOS) and get free virtual card (tutorial). This way, you get both free virtual card AND the 25% plastic card discount.

 

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Lastly

To end this, I have to put a disclaimer: This article is purely my opinion. All investments come with their own risks – I am not responsible or accountable to any losses you make.

As a child of the internet, I have high hopes for this. Anything to add to this list? If you do bitcoin as well, please share your experience via comments, FB, or tweet me at @surayaror 🙂

Need more answers to bitcoin and cryptocurrencies? Read articles below:

 

Author

56 comments

    1. It’s no longer profitable to mine your own bitcoin, that ship has sailed a looooong time ago.

      Someone told me that if you mine using own CPU, you can perhaps generate 0.00001 bitcoin in a few months.

      1. Yea, ur right. Because GPU and CPU mining is traditional, most of the miners nowadays use hardwares for mining such as ant miner and etc. But hey! Nice blog by the way 😀

  1. Hi Ms Suraya,

    You wrote, “Bitcoin have lost most of their value before (USD1100 into USD200 in a few short months!), but there’s a few reasons why I think it will make a comeback. I’ll write about that in another article.” When are you going to write about it? Looking forward.

    1. Hey Zul,

      Since this article was written, I’ve come to believe that what I think is not important, because bitcoin is too unpredictable, comeback or no comeback.

      But I do have a positive outlook on bitcoin, because:
      1) An investment bank report said that bitcoin is undervalued by $200 http://www.coindesk.com/bitcoin-undervalued-200-needham-report/
      2) Bitcoin halving is coming up (supply>demand). Bitcoin community generally think that this will increase the price, but who knows https://bitcoinmagazine.com/articles/will-the-upcoming-mining-reward-halving-impact-bitcoin-s-price-1455126224
      3) Its practicality in many aspects, especially for fintech (a global account that can be accessed and used anywhere! especially with bitcoin debit card!)
      4) I prefer liquid investments anyway
      5) I think the people in the community are geniuses! Like, seriously. tech wizards, many of them.

      In any case, about bitcoin price, I’ll end with this: I may be right, I may be wrong, but I hope I’m right. Only invest what you can afford to lose.

  2. Hi,

    Thanks for the article, it is like all-in-one information on bit coin. Is investing in bit coin shariah compliance? i think it would be in the same category trading FX, the price control by supply and demand and no backing asset. Anyhow i hope you make a lot of money out of it, but how could somebody calculate the value of one currency if it does not have underlying asset? (http://www.coindesk.com/bitcoin-undervalued-200-needham-report/). To go up to USD 1100 is bad-ass, think how much money you could make out of it, do you know why it go to USD 1100? is it due to psychology (People feel safer to invest in bit coin) ? or any other reason?

    All of this is new to me, but if visa and mastercard accept this sort of payment using bit coin i’m sure it going to be the next big thing. The volatility is crazy!

    1. Hey Nafis,

      I asked myself the exact same thing. So I read all of the journals and interviewed an Islamic Finance professor! Your answers are below 🙂

      https://www.coingecko.com/buzz/bitcoin-islam-islamic-banking-finance
      https://www.bitx.co/blog/bitcoin-and-islam/

      As for why it went as high as USD1100 – the simple answer is, during that time, the demand exceeded the supply. Then then demand abruptly stopped. Haha!

      I have no regrets going into bitcoin 🙂

      1. Hi Suraya,
        Thank you for your reply. I did spread the questionnaire publicly through fb and other internet media, but I am trying to get the feedback from public whom at least have a knowledge about Bitcoin. I hope, I can join the bitcoin Malaysia fb, if you don’t mind to gain more data and learn more about bitcoin in Malaysia market. Besides of academic purpose, I really hope my thesis will be a reference for those who is interested to know Bitcoin better in future.

        Thank you.

  3. Hi

    Thanks for your sharing. I’ve heard about bitcoin few years back but I wasn’t interested until recently some friend recommend me about it. As you mentioned that the coin peaked because the demand is high, I’m not sure if it’s still worth buying it now because it has slowed down in recent years (I guess? Just never heard anyone talk about bitcoins anymore after that). Can you give me/us some suggestions if I/we are considering buying them? Thanks

    1. Hey Kee,

      That’s interesting. What I know is that the number of bitcoin transactions and bitcoin wallets are steadily growing, but its true that this does not equal to adoption rate.

      If you’re interested, you should read this follow up bitcoin for newbies guide I wrote: ringgitohringgit.com/faq-bitcoin-malaysia-newbie/ I have a few recommendations in there.

      Best!

      1. Thanks for your reply! Yeah, I’ve read that already. Thanks. Is there by any chance have you heard about another cryptocurrency called OneCoin? Or do you have any detailed articles about it?

  4. Due to malaysia had block related account, how are we gonna convert bitcoin back to MYR and transfer back to our bank account? is there anyway to do it now without convert to foreign currency now?

  5. Hello Ms Suraya,

    You composed, “Bitcoin have lost the greater part of their esteem before (USD1100 into USD200 in a couple short months!), yet there are a couple reasons why I think it will make a rebound. I’ll expound on that in another article.” When are you going to expound on it? Looking forward.

  6. Hi Suraya,

    If you do ever consider and would like to get involved in mining, kindly get in touch with me. I have been mining for a while now and it has been good so far. We mine with the latest ASIC S9 miners. At least with mining, you won’t be affected by its volatility as much, as opposed to trading, or buying and keeping. It is a favourable plan for the medium- to long-term period. I buy some and keep too as a non-traditional investment portfolio, and that is further supplemented with mining activity.

    Best regards,

    Devon Buy

  7. hi surya ….. do you have any information anout s coin….. is it fake or real…. i mean is it really work or just trap…????

    1. Now price is downtrend. If afraid, it just means cryptocurrencies don’t align with your risk profile which is fine as well. Plenty of other investment opportunities flo!

    1. As I understand it all income over the minimum is taxable. I don’t know how miners do it, good question. Any miners or knowledgeable people want to chip in?

  8. Hi may i know how to buy ethereum in malaysia? And what’s the best way to store bitcoin and ethereum if i have them in small amount? Do you think it’s wise to trade bitcoin and ethereum via forex brokers and leave them to the care of forex brokers or having a secured wallet ie usb etc is the way to go?

    Thanks all newbie questions here hope you can help!

    1. Hi Hendy,

      Wirex only offers bitcoin wallet (for now), but you can still spend Ether there. It’ll be converted to bitcoin via Shapeshift.

  9. hi Suraya,

    right now bitcoin had reach rm10k plus.. in your opinion, has the ship sailed for newbies like me ?

    1. Hey Mijiey, the answer for that depends on your risk appetite. For newbies I suggest you read this guide: ringgitohringgit.com/faq-bitcoin-malaysia-newbie/

  10. Hi,Suraya need your help.I want to buy n keep for long term.wirex debit card fees n charges.can safely keep bitcoin in this card.n how.don’t want to keep in third party wallet.either this card or paper printing n laminated it.thkyou.I bought thru remitano n don’t know how to take it out fr remix wallet n print it.customer remix said can or print out for cold storage.thkyou

  11. Hello. I’m a malaysian too. Actually I have collected many free bitcoins in Xapo wallet. but still didn’t reach 1 btc. Do you have any ideas any other faucets to earn free btc?

    1. Hi Rajes,

      I’ve stopped faucets a while back, but if you google ‘bitcoin faucets’, I’m sure a few will come up

    1. Hi wsam,

      The most straightforward is to sell through an exchange like Luno or to sell to people via Localbitcoin. Full choices in ringgitohringgit.com/faq-bitcoin-malaysia-newbie/

      Hope this helps!

  12. Hi Suraya,

    I have just performed the buying transaction for bitcoin via LUNO mobile app (instant buy).
    After checking the details of transaction on my mobile, the purchased bitcoin is about rm300 higher than what I have checked the price before buying. Perhaps it could be the incurred fees that we need to bear.
    Question
    1. Is this normal? rm300 more expensive per transaction?
    2. I am using the method of “accumulate bitcoins by using average price”.
    Is there a way to keep track or calculate the net profit by using certain mobile app?

    1. Hi Kenny, answering your Qs:
      1) Yes, Luno has that spread – it’s their profit. Some people place buy/sell orders through their exchange and managed to buy at lower prices. It’s not as instant but worth trying
      2) I’ve never used it, but people say good things about Blockfolio to track their crypto holdings

      Hope this helps!

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