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There are quite a lot of bitcoin faucets on the Internet. They give away bitcoin for free, but where do they come from? Won't the faucet operator lose money?

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I imagine different faucets have different business models. The ones I've seen either show you ads, or make you solve captchas (which has potential value to spammers, etc).

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Advertising. The amount you receive from faucets is so minimal that the amount they make from your visit from you seeing ads is more than the amount they'll give you.

It's rare for a faucet to do it simply to solve CAPTCHAs, as most CAPTCHAs are generated randomly, and trying to find an answer to all possible graphics is virtually impossible.

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    It's possible to automate a model like this: a spammer visits target website and is challenged with a captcha. He relays this captcha to the faucet site for the next unwitting user to solve. When the user solves it, the solution is relayed back to the spammer to be entered in to the target website, so the spam can be posted. They don't have to solve all possible captchas, just the particular ones that the target has challenged them with, if they can do it in real time. On a reasonably busy faucet site this should be possible. – Nate Eldredge Jul 19 '15 at 21:51
  • @Nate You're right, I've never thought of this before, interesting. – Sabreok Jul 20 '15 at 1:44

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