The Basics of Cryptocurrency and the Way It Works
In the times that we’re living in, technology has made unbelievable advancement as compared to any time in the past. This evolution has redefined the life of man on almost every aspect. In fact, this evolution is an ongoing process and thus, human life on earth is improving constantly day in and day out. One of the latest inclusions in this aspect is cryptocurrencies.
Cryptocurrency is nothing but digital currency, which has been designed to impose security and anonymity in online monetary transactions. It uses cryptographic encryption to both generate currency and verify transactions. The new coins are created by a process called mining, whereas the transactions are recorded in a public ledger, which is called the Transaction Block Chain.
Evolution of cryptocurrency is mainly attributed to the virtual world of the web and involves the procedure of transforming legible information into a code, which is almost uncrackable. Thus, it becomes easier to track purchases and transfers involving the currency. Cryptography, since its introduction in the WWII to secure communication, has evolved in this digital age, blending with mathematical theories and computer science. Thus, it is now used to secure not only communication and information but also money transfers across the virtual web.
How to use cryptocurrency
It is very easy for the ordinary people to make use of this digital currency. Just follow the steps given below:
- You need a digital wallet (obviously, to store the currency)
- Make use of the wallet to create unique public addresses (this enables you to receive the currency)
- Use the public addresses to transfer funds in or out of the wallet
A cryptocurrency wallet is nothing else than a software program, which is capable to store both private and public keys. In addition to that, it can also interact with different blockchains, so that the users can send and receive digital currency and also keep a track on their balance.
The way the digital wallets work
In contrast to the conventional wallets that we carry in our pockets, digital wallets do not store currency. In fact, the concept of blockchain has been so smartly blended with cryptocurrency that the currencies never get stored at a particular location. Nor do they exist anywhere in hard cash or physical form. Only the records of your transactions are stored in the blockchain and nothing else.
A real-life example
Suppose, a friend sends you some digital currency, say in form of bitcoin. What this friend does is he transfers the ownership of the coins to the address of your wallet. Now, when you want to use that money, you’ve unlock the fund.
In order to unlock the fund, you need to match the private key in your wallet with the public address that the coins are assigned to. Only when both these private and public addresses match, your account will be credited and the balance in your wallet will swell. Simultaneously, the balance of the sender of the digital currency will decrease. In transactions related to digital currency, the actual exchange of physical coins never take place at any instance.
Understanding the cryptocurrency address
By nature, it is a public address with a unique string of characters. This enables a user or owner of a digital wallet to receive cryptocurrency from others. Each public address, that is generated, has a matching private address. This automatic match proves or establishes the ownership of a public address. As a more practical analogy, you may consider a public cryptocurrency address as your eMail address to which others can send emails. The emails are the currency that people send you.