In our recent post we made a discussion on what is bitcoin. We also discussed how important bitcoin is to the world economies in our times. It is only natural to go a step further and ask ourselves how to buy bitcoin in South Africa, safely and securely.
There is a number of reasons you need to know how to buy bitcoin in South Africa. If you have bought staff on the internet, it may be easy for you to buy bitcoin as well. But, with bitcoin, there are more safety measures you need to be aware of.
If you were to flaw any of those measures, you may lose your coins forever. Remember, cryptocurrency coins that have been lost may not be retrievable. People in the bitcoin believe about 4 million bitcoins have been lost on the blockchain since 2009. These bitcoins will never be recovered.
I believe most of those bitcoins got lost because their owners did not know how to buy bitcoins and store them safely. So, before going for your credit card, I encourage you to learn here how to buy bitcoin in South Africa and store securely.
How to Buy Bitcoin in South Africa? Does it Matter
Before learning how to buy bitcoin in South Africa, maybe we need to ask ourselves:
Do we really need bitcoin or any other cryptocurrency? How can bitcoin or lack of bitcoin change our lives? Do South Africans really need bitcoin?
My answer is yes. We need bitcoin in our lives. We should know how to buy bitcoin in South Africa. I have listed few reasons below.
Bitcoin and the whole blockchain technology is changing the way we used to do things world wide. The internet did the same thing. Thanks to the internet, today you can do banking at home on your computer or smartphone.
The blockchain technology is promising to bring the same level of unprecedented changes as did the internet. Those in the know believe the blockchain is the way the internet should have been done in the first place.
1. Bitcoin can be used as money to pay for goods and services. Unlike the money we have at the moment, no one stores or controls your bitcoin for you. You enjoy full access of your bitcoin money 24 hours a day, daily. With bitcoin, all the responsibility to secure your wealth rests with you.
2. The blockchain technology of bitcoin is peer to peer, meaning that there is no central authority like a bank or government involved. This brings transaction fees down.
3. Your wealth in bitcoin is not attached to any government or bank. When a bank collapses, people that had money in the bank may lose their money! It is the same with governments, when your country collapses its money loses value.
It has happened in the past. It is likely to happen again and again.
4. People the world over are slowly but surely adopting bitcoin. No one wants to be left behind. Even central banks of powerful nations are seeking to create own digital money to work like bitcoin.
5. Since 2009, bitcoin has made many millionaires. People who could recognise the potential in bitcoin invested in from its early days. Today most of them are multi-millionaires. Here are some of the bitcoin success stories.
6. Bitcoin can be used as a store of value. It is generally increasing in value since 2009. When starting out in 2009 each bitcoin was worth less than 1 South African cent. Today each bitcoin is worth about R104 700.00.
You have a higher chance of maintaining or increasing the value of your money with bitcoin. Surely, this alone should be reason enough to make you want to know more of how to buy bitcoin in South Africa.
Above all, bitcoin allows you to have total control of your money.This is the most important aspect of the bitcoin technology. This is what prompted me to want to share how to buy bitcoin in South Africa safely and securely.
Do you know that we already have bitcoin ATMs in South Africa? Yes, we do! Find where to locate them HERE.
How to Buy Bitcoin in South Africa
Now that you know why bitcoin is important, let’s get back to our topic: how to buy bitcoin in South Africa. To be able to learn how to buy bitcoin in South Africa, you will need to have a few things in place.
“I personally do not favor the idea of using credit to pay for any form of investment. You are never sure the money you are investing is going to come back.”
Here is what you will need to learn how to buy bitcoin in South Africa:
1. A Bank Account
Obviously, you will need to have funds stored in a bank account somewhere. Your funds should preferably be in a debit card than a credit card account. I personally do not favor the idea of using credit to pay for any form of investment.
Invest the amount of money you can afford to lose! You are never sure that the money you are investing is going to come back. Equally important, make sure you are registered for online banking with your bank.
2. A Computer and a Smartphone with Internet Connection
Bitcoin and the whole crypto technology takes place only on the internet. So, obviously you are going to need an internet device.
I prefer a desktop or a laptop than a smartphone. Phones get lost quite easily. You don’t want that inconvenience.
3. Basic Knowledge of Operating Computers
I don’t have to dwell much on this. It’s obvious.
4. Google Authenticator App
Install a Google Authenticator App on your smartphone. You need this to enable a 2 factor verification. I explain the reason later in this post.
5. A Working Email Address
Have a working email address ready.
All you need to know now is to know how to buy bitcoin in South Africa in a secure manner.
Remember when the automatic teller machines were introduced back in the late 1980s? We are exactly at the same point with cryptocurrencies.
How to Buy Bitcoin in South Africa: Internet Safety
It is important to raise your awareness to the dangers of the internet. The internet can be a very unsafe place. Criminals always act fast to learn new technologies before the general public. Their profits come from your lack of information.
Remember when the automatic teller machines were introduced back in the late 1980s? To most people, withdrawing their money from a teller machine was an ordeal.
Most made the mistake of accepting or even asking for help from total strangers. The result? I don’t have to go there. We all know 2 or 3 people who lost their money at the teller machine.
We are exactly at the same point with cryptocurrencies. Criminals have already figured out ways to siphon money from your bank and cryptocurrency accounts.
Does that mean we should avoid using cryptocurrencies?
No, I don’t think so. Protecting your money is 100% understandable. The question is; for how long can you avoid a technology when people are gradually adapting to it? We should take back power from the criminals by learning internet safety. Besides, learning a new phenomenon always opens the whole new world and new opportunities!
I want you to take note of this: the cryptocurrency technology is still at a starting phase. This is still the beginning.
How do we address the safety question?
Well, later in this post I cover the safety aspect and what you need to do to protect your money and your bitcoin. Make sure you read the entire post before doing anything.
How to Buy Bitcoin In South Africa: The Guide
There are several websites that allow you to buy bitcoin in South Africa. Among them are those that make buying cryptocurrencies from our shores very easy.
We will use 2 websites to learn how to buy bitcoin in South Africa; Luno and Ice3x. I’ll show you how to register and setup an account on each. After using either of the two, you will find it easier to use any other exchange website. Lets start with Ice3x.
How to Buy Bitcoin in South Africa: Ice3x Guide
1. Go to Ice3x.com registration page. Their landing page looks like this:
2. Click on the word “REGISTER”, top right of the page.
3. Type in your email address and a strong password. Have a writing book like a notepad or an old diary to copy in your signup details for future reference. Avoid storing such information on your computer.
4. Click on the “OPEN AN ACCOUNT” button below the password box.
5. The site will prompt you to verify your registration. Go to your email provider’s website, sign in and open the new email from Ice3x. Click the email verification link as indicated. This takes you back to the Ice3x exchange site.
6. Now you need to login using the email address and the password you have chosen. Click on “LOGIN” on the top right of the window. Type in your email address and the password.
7. Then click on the “LOGIN” button at the bottom. You are immediately logged in.
8. Type in your personal details and contact details as prompted. Make sure the information you provide is correct as it may be verified elsewhere before you can use the account.
9. The next thing to do is to fortify your account before depositing any funds. This is where the smartphone comes in. On your smartphone ‘s Google Play app: search for, download, and install Google Authenticator app.
10. Back on Ice3x dashboard, click the profile icon on top right corner to access your personal profile dashboard.
11. Click on “Enable 2-Factor Authentication”. This brings up a window with a QR code.
IMPORTANT! Just below the QR code there will be a Google Authenticator Masterkey, a collection of 16 characters. Write this masterkey down, preferably next to the other Ice3x login details and keep save. You will need it if you lose your phone.
12. Now go back to your smartphone and open the Google Authenticator app. Allow the app to access your phone camera as it requests. Point your smartphone camera to the QR code on the computer screen.
The authenticator will automatically scan the QR code and issue you its own code of six numbers.
13. Type in the six number code on the provided field on your Ice3X profile dashboard. This enables your 2-factor authentification.
Is your account now ready for buying bitcoin in South Africa? No, it’s not. Yes, it is! It depends on the withdrawal limit you are happy with. The default withdrawal limit is 0.014 bitcoin. This translates to about R1 500 withdrawal limit a day.
At this moment you don’t really need a higher withdrawal limit. Besides, you don’t have any funds to withdraw as yet. Just leave as is.
There is a few other changes you can make to customise your account. All that should be easy to do on your own. My main concern is to show you how to buy bitcoin in South Africa in a secure manner.
How to Buy Bitcoin in South Africa: What Next?
Now that you know how to buy bitcoin in South Africa, it’s time to put your knowledge to work. It’s time to deposit in some money.
1. Click the blue “DEPOSIT” button on top right corner.
The window that follows reveals different cryptocurrencies you can buy on Ice3x, 17 in all. To start trading, you will need to deposit some money.
2. Locate the South African Rand icon on the list of currencies. Click on the “Deposit” button along the SAR line. (see the screenshot below).
3. On the next window, scroll down and click over the “OZOW Secure Payments” field. This reveals the “OZOW Payment System” area.
4. Type in the amount of South African Rands (ZAR) you want to deposit and click “Confirm”.
5. Select your bank on the next window and enter your online banking login email address and password.
6. Click “Login” to go to your bank account dashboard to complete the transaction.
7. After you have completed the transaction on your bank account, the money should show in your Ice3x account. It’s time to buy bitcoin!
8. On your Ice3x dashboard, click “QUICK BUY”.
9. Enter the amount of ZAR you want to spend. You will see the amount of bitcoin changing in proportion to the amount of ZAR you enter.
10. Click “BUY”. You may have to confirm the transaction before it processes. You will see your brand new bitcoin appearing in your brand new bitcoin wallet. Sometimes it happens instantly, sometimes it takes a while.
You have read this far. Pad yourself on the back. You have a basic knowledge of how to buy bitcoin in South Africa. But, you are still left with the most important part of this post: how to buy bitcoin in South Africa SAFELY AND SECURELY!
It’s easy for anyone who has bought a product or service on the internet to also know how to buy bitcoin in South Africa. But doing that safely and securely requires specialised knowledge.
This tutorial, how to buy bitcoin in South Africa SAFELY and SECURELY, is your best start. But, before going to the safety and security part, let’s learn how to buy bitcoin in South Africa on Luno.
How to Buy Bitcoin in South Africa: Luno Guide
1. Go to Luno website to create an account.
2. Type in your email address and a strong password. Make sure you got the details written and stored safely.
3. Verify your location. By default, it will be South Africa.
5. You can also choose to subscribe to Luno newsletter.
6. Click the blue “SIGN UP” button below.
7. Next, verify your email address by going to your email provider and clicking on the email verification link or button.
8. Once verified, login to your Luno account and type in your personal and contact details.
9. Click save.
Follow the ‘how to buy bitcoin in South Africa Ice3x guide’ to connect your Luno account to Google Authenticator app. A single Google Authenticator app can be connected and used with multiple accounts. Just make sure you copy and save the masterkey of each account.
Every time you sign in to your account you will need to type in your Google Authenticator code from your mobile phone. You will also be prompted to do this whenever you execute any important task on the platform, like transferring or exchanging your coins.
At the moment Luno offers only 4 cryptocurrencies for trading. These are bitcoin, ethereum, bitcoin cash, and ripple. Luno will give you 5 wallets in your account, one for each cryptocurrency and the fifth for your ZAR.
Luno will also issue you a payment reference ID, a combination of 9 characters. You will use this as a beneficiary reference when transferring money from your bank account to your Luno account.
Copy the payment reference and store with your other Luno details.
Connect Luno to Your Bank Account
Now, you need to add Luno as one of your beneficiaries in your bank account. The procedure works smooth with Standard Bank because Luno is already one of the bank’s listed beneficiaries.
In the other banks you may need to add Luno manually. The procedure should be more or less the same.
How to Buy Bitcoin in South Africa
1. Go to your bank’s online banking website and sign in. For this guide, I used Standard Bank. The process should be more or less the same with other banks.
2. Go to “Beneficiaries” and, click “Add Beneficiary”.
3. Type “Luno” on beneficiaries search field.
4. Click on “LUNO” as it appears on the drop-down menu.
5. Type in your reference followed by your beneficiary reference. Your beneficiary reference is the payment reference code you received from Luno.
6. Click save and confirm the changes.
7. From your bank account, transfer your initial amount of money to Luno as you would normally do with any transfers or payments. It takes less than 24 hours for the money to show on your Luno account, sometimes much less than that.
How to Buy Bitcoin in South Africa: Your First Bitcoin
Now you have money in your Luno account. It’s time to buy some bitcoin.
1. On the Luno website, click on “Wallets”, top right.
2. Click “Buy” on the next window. A popup appears, prompting you to choose the crypto you want to buy.
3. Select “bitcoin” (or any other cryptocurrency).
4. Select how you’d like to pay for your bitcoin. Here you’ll select “ZAR”.
5. Ensure that your payment currency is correct. Enter the amount of ZAR you want to spend. If you want to spend all your deposited ZAR, click on “MAX” on the right.
6. Click “NEXT” to proceed.
7. If you have enabled the 2-factor verification, the site will prompt you to obtain and type in your Google Authentification code. If you have done everything well you will immediately see a notification informing you that the transaction has been a success.
You will see some bitcoins already appearing in your bitcoin wallet. This can sometimes be delayed, depending on how busy the bitcoin network is at that moment. Though, it should take no more than 20 minutes.
This is the information that most bitcoin schemes and agencies in our country do not want you to know. Your ignorance to this information benefits them!
How to Buy Bitcoin in South Africa Safely
We are now going into cryptocurrency information that most people are not aware of. This is the information that bitcoin schemes and agencies do not want you to know.
Your lack of this type of information benefits them! Your ignorance benefits them. I know of bitcoin schemes and agencies that visit our work places to lure us into investing into bitcoins. They know most people do not know how to buy bitcoin in South Africa on their own.
They won’t tell you you can do all that for yourself on your own computer. They won’t tell you you can store your own coins on your computer or physical wallet.
I have mentioned somewhere in this post that bitcoin lives in a wallet on your computer or a device wallet. There are a few different bitcoin wallets you can use. Each has its own advantages and disadvantages.
What is a Bitcoin Wallet
A bitcoin wallet is a software or physical device on which you can store your bitcoins. In actual fact, you store your bitcoin’s public and private keys. If you want to keep your coins safe in this industry you should familiarise yourself with these two phrases, public and private keys.
Types of Cryptocurrency Wallets
These are wallets in cryptocurrency exchange websites like Luno and Ice3x. They are also called hot wallets because you need to be online to access and use them.
Advantage: Your coins are easily accessible for transferring and trading.
Disadvantages: You don’t have access to your private keys. There is a saying in the cryptocurrency circles that goes: NOT YOUR KEYS, NOT YOUR COINS. More on this later.
Desktop or Mobile Wallets
These are software wallets that you download and install on your computer or smartphone. You can access them offline but you need internet connection to make any changes.
Advantage: Much safer than the web wallets. Your coins stay on your computer. You have access to your private keys.
Disadvantage: You safeguard your own coins and their keys: you lose your private keys, you lose your coins forever. Your coins can get hacked and stolen from your computer.
Hardware wallets are physical devices on which you can store your coins. They store the private keys in such a way that it is impossible for hackers to steal.
Advantages: Very safe. Fast and easy to use.
Disadvantage: Expensive. The cheapest costs about R1 000.
How to Buy Bitcoin in South Africa and Keep it Safe
Now you know how to by bitcoin in South Africa. The next big thing is: how are you going to keep your bitcoin safe. Keeping your bitcoin safe starts with knowing how to stay safe on the internet.
Take online banking: Is it safe to bank online? The answer is ‘yes’. Online banking is safe if you follow online safety practices. Buying and storing bitcoin takes online banking safety practices to the next level.
Here are recommendations to keeping your money and bitcoin safe. Let’s get busy!
Have an antivirus and firewall installed on your computer. Make sure they are both updated to the latest standards to be able to identify the latest viruses and malwares.
When creating important accounts, always use very strong passwords. A strong password should ideally have over 14 characters. It should have a combination of lower and upper case letters, numbers, and special characters like #, +, <, etc.
Change your password as often as you can. Note that internet accounts’ login details, emails and passwords, get stolen by hackers now and then.
Avoid storing your accounts’ login details on your computer or on a cloud storage like Google OneDrive. Rather write on a piece of paper that you can hide away easily.
Make sure that the website you are visiting is the one you intend to visit. Hackers may create a fake site with an address and website content very similar to your target website.
I once landed on a site with this address www.mc.fee.com. My intention was to buy antivirus at www.mcafee.com. The fake site looked axactly like the Macfee website. I lost R400 on that day and learnt a lesson.
Check your email addresses for hack attack on regular basis. Use these sites:
Google:- for gmail address.
Avast:- for any other email address.
Enable two-factor authentification on all your banking and cryptocurrency accounts. Even when your account login details had been hacked, no one will be able to make any changes to your account when you have a two-factor authentification in place.
The app on your smartphone will request a permission from you before allowing any changes on your accounts to become effective.
Avoid accessing your accounts using WiFi connection in public places. Most restaurant or hotel WiFi connections are open connections, meaning other people can see your information. Some residence WiFi connections are also open.
To check what type of WiFi connection you have, click the WiFi icon on bottom right corner of your screen. On the next box, next to your WiFi connection name, ensure that it says “secure”. If it says “open”, your connection is public, meaning it is not safe for transfer of confidential information.
How to solve this?
You can either change your internet service or, you can use a Virtual Private Network (VPN). Find out more about VPNs here.
Transfer Your Coins to Desktop Wallet
1. Install Exodus wallet on your computer. When installing the wallet, the software will provide you with a 12 word seed phrase.
2. Write or type the phrase and store together with the password. As a backup, you can have more than one copies saved at different locations. When your computer is damaged, you will need the phrase and the password to create a clone of your wallet.
After you have completed the setup, it is time to transfer your bitcoin. Note that your new desktop wallet has several wallets for different cryptocurrencies.
Yes, several mini-wallets within one wallet!
3. Locate and click on the bitcoin wallet. When open, it shows 2 buttons; “Send” and “Receive”.
4. Click on “Receive” to expose the address of your bitcoin wallet, a string of letters and numbers. See the image below:
5. Copy the address.
Note: Some malwares target notepad app. So, if you are going to paste the address on notepad, make sure it is the same as the original code before sending in your coins.
6. Now go over to your Luno account (or anywhere you have bought your coins) and click on “Send”.
7. Choose the cryptocurrency you want to transfer, bitcoin in our case.
8. Paste in the bitcoin address you have obtained from your desktop wallet.
9. In the “Currency” box, choose bitcoin.
10. In the adjacent box, enter the amount of bitcoin you want to transfer. Note that you can’t transfer all your bitcoin. Some will be taken by Luno as payment for their service. For bitcoin of R1 000, they will take about R20 worth.
11. Then click “NEXT”.
12. You will immediately be prompted to enter a 6 digit authentification code from your Google Authentification app. Enter your 6 digit code.
If you have done all well, the site will tell you the transfer has been a success. Back at your Exodus wallet, your coins should appear in less than twenty minutes. It is time to carry out another security measure.
Getting Your Bitcoin Private Keys
1. In order to locate your bitcoins in your wallet, click “Wallet” on your dashboard.
2. Then click on “bitcoin” from the list of the cryptocurrencies. You should now see your coins in your wallet.
3. Click on the vertical dots on the top right of your screen. See the screenshot below.
4. Then choose “View Private Keys” from the drop-down menu. A box will show up, revealing your bitcoin wallet’s public and private keys.
Copy all the keys and save on an external device like a USB stick. It is even safer to print them out on paper and store in multiple places.
Your private keys and your 12 word seed phrase will one day help you recreate your wallet and recover your coins.
Conclusion: How to Buy Bitcoin in South Africa
I have said a lot. I have tried to cover every question regarding how to buy bitcoin in South Africa. I have also made sure you understand the risks of dealing with bitcoin and how to address them.
There is still a lot to know on how to buy bitcoin safely in South Africa. Keep learning. Keep acquiring bitcoin. Prepare yourself for exciting times ahead.
Thank you for reading.