Satoshi Nakamoto, which is the alias of its creator, described it as a peer-to-peer electronic cash system. It’s completely and entirely decentralized, which means no central bank can control it.
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A beginner’s guide to everything cryptocurrency-related
Cryptocurrencies are a new way to do business online, but they also make for a great investment if you know what to look for. In this article, we’re going to touch upon the most important cryptocurrency basics so you can jump into the blockchain-powered times of tomorrow as quickly as possible.
A brief history of cryptocurrencies
Bitcoin, the strongest and most widely-known cryptocurrency, hit the public in 2009. Satoshi Nakamoto, which is the alias of its creator, described it as a peer-to-peer electronic cash system. It’s completely and entirely decentralized, which means no central bank can control it.
A new way to pay
With each passing year, an increasing amount of online merchants are starting to give their support to paying in Bitcoin and other popular cryptocurrencies. They used to be exclusive to the eCommerce world, but this is quickly changing, as an increasing number of brick and mortar stores are adapting to the phenomenon and starting to accept payments in Bitcoin as well. Think bars, local shops, restaurants…
Mining for coins
Mining, as the name itself might suggest, is a way to obtain cryptocurrency coins by trading your computer’s processing power for a chance to randomly discover a coin in the cryptocurrency network. Most miners tend to join a mining network, and it works like this: whenever someone who is a part of the community discovers a coin, its value is split between the other miners. That way, you can be certain that donating a certain amount of your computer’s resources will result in you obtaining a portion of that coin in the long run.
Obviously, the more powerful your computer, the more you’re going to earn.
An opportunity for investors
Not too long ago, a single Bitcoin had a three-digit value in US dollars. Nowadays, its value is measured in thousands. Although the currency is rather volatile, over the long-term, its value seems to be going up, and no one knows where’s the limit. Similar things can be said for other popular cryptocurrencies like Litecoin, Ripple, and Ethereum. In any case, if you’re planning to invest, you should never pour in more than what you’re willing to lose if things don’t go downhill for whatever reason. And beware of cryptocurrency scams
Wallets – a way to store cryptocurrencies
As you might have heard, you have more than just a single option when it comes to storing your hard-earned cryptocurrencies. The most popular way of doing so tends to be through online wallets Jaxx, Electrum, Bitcoin Core and many others. However, if you’re going in this direction, be advised that the security of your investment lies in the hands of whoever is controlling that particular network and its level of security. In case of security breaches, all of your investment may be wiped out in a matter of minutes.
Storing your e-coins offline is not without its inherent risks either. If for whatever reason you lose access to your computer or if your hard drive bites the dust, it’s going to be impossible to recover them if you haven’t made any backups. Therefore, it’s probably best to pick something you’re comfortable working with, and follow the good old saying of not storing all of your eggs in a single basket.