It seems that term cryptocurrencies we are hearing more and more, from day to day it is becoming quite ordinary word in our lives and in the financial world too.
What is a Cryptocurrency?
Let\'s start with this explanation first. It is a digital currency, virtual is quite good synonym. It is completely new way of payment method, the alternative for physical currency that we are using. The name crypto is defining the fact how these currencies are using principles of cryptography to secure transactions made in digital systems.
Decentralized Ledger System
Bitcoin is decentralized system, which means that no one have full control and power of it. no one can control currency, and it is gain with the decentralized ledger system of encryption and verification for all transaction between users in the network. That is the fact that is advantage of cryptocurrencies compared to the traditional currencies.
The whole system is based on blockchain system. For each transaction there is unique digital signature from the both side of the transaction. These digital signature are including public key and private key. Public key creates the signature and designates who to send money, and private key is applied to verify the legitimacy of the transaction.
Once the transaction is saved into the blockchain it can\'t be changed. Another advantage over the traditional currencies. This is situation where Blockchain is taking apart. Entire transaction process is undertaken with time stamping to maintain the chronological order of the steps in the transaction. Each transaction is placed in a block witch is added to the ledger and it is visible to the other users.
It was launched in the 2009 by the Satoshi Nakamoto, individual or group of individuals who remains anonymous. Anyway Bitcoin is the cryptocurrency that reached top of the cryptocurrencies market. It is first digital peer to peer currency without any authority of third party.
Other Major Cryptocurrencies - Altcoins
All the altocins are considered to be alternative to the Bitcoin. The most popular are Litecoin, Ethereum, Ripple, Monero, etc. All of these currencies are applying the secure blockchain technology to prevent fraud.
Legality - Variations
Legality differ from one country to another. Even cryptocurrency is becoming regular payment method in the US and parts of Euro there are some country which are banning the use of the cryptocurrencies such as China.