What is cryptocurrency?

In simple terms, a cryptocurrency is a digital form of money, a digital asset representing a store of value. It is a decentralized currency built on blockchain.

A cryptocurrency is: 

  • Decentralized
  • Encrypted
  • Recorded and verified on a blockchain
  • Not controlled by any government or other authority

The first-ever (and the biggest one by market capitalization) cryptocurrency is, of course, Bitcoin (BTC). The concept of Bitcoin was described in the whitepaper, written and published by an anonymous creator Satoshi Nakamoto on October 31, 2008. The first Bitcoin block, also called the Genesis Block, was mined a bit later, on January 9, 2019.

Ethereum (ETH), the world’s biggest altcoin and the second-biggest digital asset, is also a cryptocurrency. It was created by Vitalik Buterin, Charles Hoskinson, Joseph Lubin and Gavin Wood in 2014.

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