Phishing Alert — What is Phishing and how can I avoid it?

Buenos días Jammers!

Thanks to the eagle-eyed Guido P. on Facebook, BTCjam was alerted to a phishing attack.  Now we can warn you about Phishing and how to avoid it.  Phishing is an attempt to trick you into entering your account information into a fake website so they can steal your account. For example, in this current phishing attack they have created a fake version of the BTCjam website to trick you.  Remember that the real BTCjam website will always have a URL that starts with https://btcjam.com and will have the security lock icon next to it.

As you can see, there is almost no difference between the phishing site:

01 - Desctop screenshot22 Desctop screenshot

and BTCjam.com, except the URL at the top.

If you see a suspicious link, always check the URL before you login.  Phishing can also be stopped by using Two Factor Authentication (2FA), as 2FA requires a unique token that is generated by your cell phone that helps prove your identity (in addition to your password).

Be aware of phishing (check that URL!) and always use Two Factor Authentication!

If you find a site that you think is a phishing site, you can report it to Google on their Report Phishing Page.

Until Next Time… Keep on Jamming!

If you need a bitcoin loan, borrow on BTCjam!  If you want to invest, invest on BTCjam!

BTCjam reintroduces Weekly Payments and Weekly Loans

Oi Jammers!

At BTCjam we are constantly striving to improve the borrower experience.  Recently we updated the loan listing form focusing on long-term loans, removing many parameters.  However, now we have decided to bring back short-term loans for those borrowers that want to take 7 or 14 day loans, and we have also brought back the option to pay back on a weekly basis.  For those that would like to know more, I’ll explain in detail why we made these changes.

Two weeks ago BTCjam simplified the loan application process, so borrowers could focus on providing details about their loan rather being distracted by too many options. Last week, we improved the loan listing application by manually reviewing all loan applications before publishing (previously, we used to review during the funding period). The goal was to remove loans from the platform that are not relevant to the community as we will no longer accept loans that are intended to simply increase reputation. The correct way to improve your profile is by linking additional social networking accounts or adding personal references from friends and family, not by creating artificial loans.

After those changes, some investors reached out to us asking to bring back the weekly payment cycle and we listened. We are bringing back one-week and two-week loans. Thanks to our improved loan review process, we are willing to test the demand for short-term loans and, based upon that demand, we will decide whether to keep or remove them in the future.

User feedback is very important to us here at BTCjam and when you speak, we listen. Sometimes we cannot implement the requests instantly or we don’t believe they are 100% aligned with company’s long-term strategy.  As a marketplace with two main stakeholders (borrowers and investors), our job is to mediate the inherent conflict of interest among them, as it is common borrower requests that are not be aligned with investor’s interests (and vice-versa). Rest assured, we are 100% committed to providing an excellent service for both borrowers and investors.

Anyway, we are always interested to hear your ideas and suggestions on how to improve BTCjam.  Please email us at support@btcjam.com if you want to talk about that.

BTCjam featured in Valor Econômico, the largest financial newspaper in Brazil

Valor - Bitcoins making the radar of Brazilian entrepreneurs   Valor International

Since its creation, BTCJam lent $12 million in bitcoins, $10 million of which between January 2014 and January 2015. The expectation is to end this year with a 20% increase over the total already granted. Currently, the average rate on loans is around 40% per year, but the cost varies depending on the credit history of each customer.

Read More at Valor Econômico

BTCjam improves Loan Listing Process

Bienvenido Jammers!

We’ve got great news today from the BTCjam Anti-Fraud Department.  We have enhanced our loan review process to focus on providing higher quality loans and keeping our loan marketplace streamlined.  To accomplish this, all loans are now being reviewed by an Anti-Fraud Specialist before they are posted on BTCjam.com.  Don’t worry, this loan review will be integrated in a way so that the loan process remains efficient.

Our goal at BTCjam is to provide investors with the best loans and borrowers with the best possible chance to have their loan funded at a competitive rate and these changes will help us continue doing that.

Until Next Time… Keep on Jamming!

If you need a bitcoin loan, borrow on BTCJam!  If you want high returns, invest on BTCJam!

BTCJam Launches Simplified Loan Application Process

Simplified

We have great news today! BTCJam is simplifying the loan application process.  

With the new simplified version, it’s much easier to get a loan on BTCJam. Borrowers can now focus on providing a better description of why they need a loan, instead of being overwhelmed by options.

14 Day Loan Funding

Starting today, all loans will have two weeks to be funded. Far too often, we see good loans that don’t get funded because they try to raise funds too quickly. Other loans last too long and crowd the marketplace. Standardizing the length of loan funding will make BTCJam easier to use for borrowers and for lenders.

Simplified Loan Terms 

We’re also simplifying the length of loans to 1-4 months, half year, nine months and full year. And remember, there are never any penalties or fees if a borrower decides to pay off their loan early.

 

shutterstock_33739678Payment cycle options reduced

Four payments a month is just too many… and if you miss a payment, it could hurt your credit score. Our new monthly loans make repayment easy as it matches your schedule.  Payments are only on a monthly basis only.

We believe these new simpler loan options will provide a better BTCJam experience for borrowers and for lenders. We’re always looking for ways to improve. Thanks for borrowing and for lending!

Until next time… Keep on Jamming!

If you need money, borrow bitcoins on BTCJam!  If you want high returns, invest on BTCJam!

BTCJam named one of the 25 most exciting bitcoin startups by Business Insider

http://bit.ly/1btNBP3

BTCJam has been named one of the 25 most exciting Bitcoin startups by Buisness Insider. bit.ly/1btNBP3

Business Insider — BTCJam: Peer-to-peer lending – This San Francisco startup offers peer-to-peer lending solutions, matching those with bitcoin to spare with those looking to borrow. A 2014 seed round raised $1.2 million, and it provided more than $5 million worth of loans that same year.

CelsoThe founder, Celso Pitta, hails from Brazil, and as such views the company as a potential boon in the developing world, where it can be more difficult to get loans. Just this week, it announced it would use customers’ credit scores to determine interest rates.

Read more: http://uk.businessinsider.com/25-most-exciting-bitcoin-startups-in-the-world-ethereum-21-coinbase-coindesk-2015-3?op=1#ixzz3VKtHJ4YI

BTCJam welcomes Computer Science and Applied Mathematics Expert

David2

Greetings Jammers!

We’ve got more great news today. Join us in welcoming David Xi, an incredibly talented engineer to the team here at BTCJam. David has a very impressive background with a B.A. in Mathematics from Sichuan University, a Master’s in Applied Mathematics also from Sichuan University, a PhD in Computer Science from Korea University and did his Post Doctoral work at the University of Waterloo.

With ten years industry experience in the related fields and strong academic research background in the data mining, machine learning, pattern recognition, David is “elated to join the team at BTCJam.” David is very familiar with big data systems, having worked with similar systems for the past few years. He believes his previous work should line up perfectly with the work he will be doing at BTCJam.

 “We are thrilled to add David to our team at BTCJam.  David’s wealth of knowledge and impressive mathematics and computer science background will no doubt be invaluable at BTCJam as we continue to improve our product.”, said Celso Pitta, CEO of BTCJam

David believes that BTCJam’s unique credit scoring system could revolutionize the global credit system, and is very excited to join BTCJam on our mission to extend access to credit, worldwide.  With David’s impressive background in software engineering and mathematics, he is a real asset to BTCJam and will definitely be putting those advanced math skills to work.

Until Next Time… Keep on Jamming!

If you need money, borrow bitcoins on BTCJam!  If you want high returns, invest on BTCJam!

BTCJam Introduces Risk Based Pricing (Interest Rates Set Automatically by Credit Score)

riskbasedheader

BTCJam is changing the way interest rates are set in order to improve the experience for both borrowers and investors. Starting today, BTCJam will set the borrower’s interest rate automatically based upon their credit score. The higher the borrower’s credit score, the lower their interest rate.

Automatically calculating the interest rate based upon credit scoring is known as risk-based pricing and is a well known and time proven methodology within the financial services industry. Interest rates are set by a combination of the borrower’s credit rating (using BTCJam’s proprietary credit rating system) and the duration of the loan. Borrowers who are less likely to default will receive lower interest rates.  Since BTCJam has all of the information about the borrowers, we are in a better position to determine the likelihood of the borrower paying back the loan and will adjust the interest rate accordingly. Risk-based pricing makes investing easier because when a lender invests in an A-rated loan, they know that the borrower will be paying an A-level interest rate.

fixedrate

Interest rates are set by a combination of the borrower’s credit rating and the duration of the loan. Borrowers who are less likely to default will receive lower interest rates.

When borrowers are allowed to set their own interest rates, it is far too tempting for them to set a low interest rate and see if investors will accept lower returns.  While a borrower who receives a very low interest rate usually pays back their loan, it does not provide the investor any cushion against possible defaults.  With risk-based pricing, the interest rates for all loans will be standardized, ensuring that investors are able to offset possible losses from defaults.

We are confident that this change will improve BTCJam and allow us to continue to maintain the highest repayment rates in peer-to-peer lending (as high as 98% for A-rated borrowers), as well as increase overall returns to investors.

Check out the changes and start investing with BTCJam.  Get a loan with a reasonable rate with BTCJam.

Risk Based Pricing (automatic interest rates) Q&A

Q: What will happen to loans that were created before the change to Risk Based Pricing?

A: Loans created prior to the adoption of Risk Based Pricing (automatic interest rates) will continue until they have either been funded or have expired. BTCJam will identify the old loans and will separate them so they will be only be accessible using filters.

Q: The system sets a rate that is too high for me and I won’t be able to repay it. What should I do?

A: If the interest rate on your loan is too high you should verify more documents and add more information to your profile. By verifying more information, you will increase your credit score and receive a lower interest rate.

Q: Do I still have the option of doing a loan tied to a local currency?

A: Yes you will still be able to choose between a Bitcoin loan and a loan tied to local currencies. Learn more about currency types.

Q: Why did BTCJam choose to change the way that interest rates are determined?

A: BTCJam changed to risk-based pricing for a number of reasons. One reason being investor and borrower security. By setting the interest rates automatically it simplifies the risk assessment for both borrowers and lenders. Learn more about risk-based pricing.

Q: Will there be a set standard for interest rates based upon credit rating? For example, will all C rated borrowers have loans set at a standard 5.5% interest regardless of profile completeness?

A: Yes, every credit score grade will now come with a set interest rate that is the same for all borrowers that have the same credit score. However, rates will change also according to the loan term. That means, a C loan for 30 days will have lower rates than a 1 year loan for a C rated  borrower.

Q: Can I pay more than the recommended interest rate?

A: No. The interest rates are now automatically linked to your credit rating.  This change protects our investors from loans that are “too good to be true” and that the borrower never intends to repay.  We took into consideration both borrowers and investors when making this change.

Over 800 bitcoin loans serviced in Brazil thanks to BTCJam

800Brazil

Brazil has outshone many other countries in the number of bitcoin loans occurring within its borders. Second only to the United States, more than 800 bitcoin loans have been given to Brazilians because of the much lower interest than those on loans offered locally. The average local interest rate can be close to triple digits and is not uncommon to go to 200 percent, while BTCJam offers loans between 5% and 20%.

Bitcoinist, Deutsche Banker Starts New Bitcoin Exchange in Brazil

BTCJam hires Anti-Fraud Expert from Lending Club

Howdy Jammers!

We’ve got great news at Jam headquarters today.  We’ve got a brand new Jammer!  Anti-fraud expert Marisela Zaragoza has joined the BTCJam team.  Marisela has more than five years of experience in anti-fraud, having worked previously at Lending Club, Montecito Bank & Trust and she received a degree in Criminal Justice from Santa Barbara City College.

Marisela is “thrilled to join the team at BTCJam” and she believes that there are “many exciting opportunities for the future in bitcoin peer to peer lending” and that “peer to peer lending could change the world by expanding fair access to affordable credit worldwide.”

WelcomeMariselaMarisela is an expert in customer relations and while at Lending Club, she used her Criminal Justice background to verify customers and evaluate identification documents. Marisela is a major fraud deterrent and we believe her arrival will usher in a new era in anti-fraud at BTCJam.

“Based on Marisela’s impressive experience at Lending Club, we believe her analytical abilities, criminal justice background and attention to detail will further expand BTCJam’s fraud department.” said Celso Pitta, CEO of BTCJam.

And for all those reasons and more, we’re super excited to have her here at BTCJam. Welcome Marisela, to BTCJam!

Until Next Time… Keep on Jamming!

If you need money, borrow bitcoins on BTCJam!  If you want high returns, invest on BTCJam!