There are over 40 Bitcoin and cryptocurrency exchanges globally in all parts of the world. All exchange bitcoin and some a diverse variety of altcoins. They are established in most major countries from Australia to the US and South Africa to the Ukraine.
All compete on various factors including fees charged, security of bitcoin and ease of use. Almost all have a KYC (Know Your Customer) policy and require verified ID before they will accept you as a member and trade or buy and sell cryptocurrency on their site.
Fees for exchanging Bitcoin
Fees for buying and selling currency usually vary depending on the currency being traded and sometimes the volume. Also sometimes one can also set the priority of transaction by paying a higher fee and speed up the confirmation process. In order to maintain ther volume of business some exchanges are now reducing their fees and a competitive spirit is now entering the game. Only recently Binance, for example, announced a 50 percent reduction in their Bitcoin withdrawal fees and Kraken followed that with a similar reduction. Binance has now some of the lowest fees in the market place. Another factor that has influenced the fee structure is that prior to SegWit (SegWit is the process by which the block size limit on a blockchain is increased by removing signature data from Bitcoin transactions. … Hence, Segregated Witness in short, means to separate transaction signatures. … The bitcoin blockchain consists of multiple systems distributed – Investopedia) the fees were starting to become untenable for smaller transactions and so the volume of those began to drop. Now SegWit is beginning to be adopted by most exchanges that have reduced the fees to a more tenable range. Wikipedia, en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_bitcoin_companies, contains a list of all Bitcoin exchanges but bestbitcoinexchange.io lists the top 40.
Security of Bitcoin
Most exchanges have a satisfactory level of security but some have been hacked and lost millions in asset value from their wallets. From bitter experience those exchanges that were hacked are now tightening up their security as they remain a prime target for hackers since they usually have the largest quantity of any coins. Leaving your Bitcoin or altcoins in an exchange is subject to someone else’s level of security and is not as secure as transferring them to a cold wallet off line where they are inaccessible.
Exchange ease of Use
For the most part the exchanges are easy to use. Before you pick an exchange to use it is a good idea to practice some due diligence and ensure you understand how it works and if you can use it easily. Some tend to be more complex than others and seem to be geared more to the currency trader than to simply buying and selling. All require varying levels of KYC and the provision of verified ID to join and this can take anywhere from a few minutes to several days depending on the exchange and their willingness to comply with local government regulations. Be aware also that many are now required to report large transactions to a government body. It is well, boring as it may be, to check the terms and conditions and regulations relating to an exchange before using it.
This article is for information purposes only and is not to be construed as financial information for any purposes such as investment or speculation and it is the responsibility of the reader to perform proper due diligence before acting upon any of the information provided. We recommend that you consult with a licensed, qualified investment advisor before making any investment decisions.