What Are Cryptocurrencies?

A cryptocurrency is a digital medium of exchange using strong cryptography to secure financial transactions, control the creation of additional units and verify the transfer of assets.

There are a few pieces here to focus on: digital, strong cryptography, creation, transactions and verification.

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What Are Cryptocurrencies? | CoinMarketCap

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A bit of a misnomer, trustless is actually a quality meant to explain that you can trust people more because you don’t have to trust anyone in particular. You can use the blockchain with confidence knowing that nobody can tamper with it after your transaction in a block has been confirmed (barring an attack on the network). You can also oblige someone to fulfill their obligations using “smart contracts.”

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Related to the point above, you can control and manage your own assets without any intermediaries involved. Just keep your private keys safe!

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Everyone around the world can participate in the network, and you can send and receive cryptocurrencies quickly within minutes or seconds. This means that even those without access to the current banking system (the underbanked or unbanked) can also participate in the global economy.

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You can check every transaction that ever took place on most blockchains, such as on Bitcoin or Ethereum.

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Unlike the typical government-issued monetary system, most cryptocurrencies come with a predictable supply schedule. This means that you can work out an inflation rate per year, with that being known, rather than being at the whims of a central government.

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You can transact at any time, rather than having to wait for bank opening/operating hours.

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