How long does it take for a Bitcoin deposit to show in my account?
When someone sends you Bitcoin, the transaction usually appears within a few seconds. The transaction state is pending (or unconfirmed) when it arrives. It will only be credited to your account after it has been confirmed. You can only use the funds --sell it or convert it to local currency-- after the transaction has been confirmed.
Pending transactions are usually confirmed within in hour but the time can vary. The transaction is confirmed after it has been included in three blocks by miners on the Bitcoin network (known as "three confirmations"). You can only be completely sure that your money has arrived after the transaction is confirmed.
Pending transaction delays
It is possible for pending transactions to be reversed or considerably delayed for several reasons:
Double spends: Until a transaction is confirmed, it is technically possible for the sender to cancel the transaction and send their funds elsewhere instead. If they do this, the pending transaction will be invalidated and will disappear from your account.
Low fees and network congestion: If the sender used a low fee for their transaction or the Bitcoin network is currently congested, it will take longer for miners to accept the transaction into a block. This could cause the transaction to be delayed by hours or days. If the fee was very low, it may never be accepted by miners at all.
Chains for unconfirmed transactions: If the sender constructed a chain of unconfirmed transactions (where each transaction uses funds from a previous unconfirmed transaction), then the transaction will only be confirmed after all the previous transactions have been confirmed. If the chain is long, this could delay confirmation considerably. Also, if any previous transaction in the chain is double spent, it will invalidate your transaction. You should be suspicious of any transactions like this since they may be attempting to trick you.
To find out more about the status of a pending transaction, enter the transaction ID into one of these sites:
XBit Asia has no control over whether incoming pending transactions are confirmed. If the transaction is reversed or delayed, the only recourse is the ask the sender to resend the payment.