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An Introduction To Crypto

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What is Crypto?

A Cryptocurrency is a digital currency in which encryption techniques are used to regulate the generation of units of currency and verify the transfer of funds, operating independently of a central bank. Note: Not all 'Crypto' companies are currencies. Many of them offer other services and their 'Currency' is actually a token with which to pay for their services. The value of this token is directly proportional to the number in circulation and market cap.

What is Blockchain?

A Blockchain is a digital ledger in which transactions made in bitcoin or another cryptocurrency are recorded chronologically and publicly.

How does Cryptocurrency work?



What is an ICO?

An ICO (Initial Coin Offering) is like an IPO. It's a crowd funding exercise to launch a new company. Usually there are incentives to invest at this stage. To take part in an ICO, the company will offer a wallet on their website. You create an account with that company and when the ICO begins, you transfer the amount of bitcoin (or other accepted coin) to a given wallet.In return, after the ICO is complete, you will be given a number of the newly created tokens (or coins). These can then be stored in a wallet or traded on an exchange.

How to store cryptocurrency

There are many Crypto wallets around, some are within exchanges and some specialise mainly on giving you the most secure and reliable wallet.
1. Cloud Wallet 2. Local Wallet (also called Paper Wallet) 3. Hardware Wallet (also referred as Cold Wallet)
The safest and by far the most secured is a hardware wallet. I would say that wallets within exchanges or bridge type platforms like Coinbase are called Cloud wallets (as they sit within their platform). Bitcoin cold storage is achieved when Bitcoin private keys are created and stored in a secure offline environment. Cold storage is important for anyone with bitcoin holdings. Online computers are vulnerable to hackers and should not be used to store a significant amount of bitcoins.
Local Wallets: 1. Exodus 2. Jaxx Hardware wallets: 1. Ledger Nano (or any other Ledger) https://www.ledgerwallet.com 2. Trezor https://trezor.io
Not all altcoins are supported in Local or hardware wallets so only keep the coins that they support.

How To Buy Cryptocurrency

There is several platforms where you are able to buy Cryptocurrency but only a few where you can buy with dollars, pounds or euros.
Bitcoin is the base of any crypto transaction within the Blockchain. So therefore you need to buy some Bitcoin (with some exceptions) before you are actually able to buy altcoins. Most exchanges (think of it as a broker) don't allow you to buy with a card or online bank transfer so you have to use a bridge type platform that enable us to do so. This platforms will ask you for ID to avoid Fraud and Money Laundering which used to happen a lot a few years ago. Make sure you enable every login security measure. Some will benefit from using the Google Authenticator app or Authy app for the 2 factor authenticator (enhanced security)
The most known bridge type platforms to buy Bitcoin are: 1. Coinbase (although buggy at times it is one of the most famous ones) 2. Uphold (one of the cheapest to buy from and also a great and simple interface) 3. Blockchain.info 4. Coincorner 5. Coinfloor
Some of the platforms above and others are starting to allow you to buy other coins like ETH & LTC (coinbase)
Crypto Exchanges: 1. Bittrex 2. Poloniex 3. Bitfinex 4. Bitshares
For you to be able to buy any altcoins, you will need to send your BTC (Bitcoin) across to one of the exchanges in order for you to start trading any altcoins. To send BTC across you need to get the wallet address of the respective coin to deposit money in your exchange and paste it to the Bridge type platform where the send BTC section is.
Buying limits get increased by improving security and also verifying bank account and card by buying some BTC coins.

Useful Tools

To view Crypto market caps, price, where to trade and links to offical websites https://coinmarketcap.com/
For Crypto charts https://uk.tradingview.com

Glossary

51% Attack When more than half of the computing power of a cryptocurrency network is controlled by a single entity or group, this entity or group may issue conflicting transactions to harm the network, should they have the malicious intent to do so.
Address Cryptocurrency addresses are used to send or receive transactions on the network. An address usually presents itself as a string of alphanumeric characters.
ASIC Short form for ‘Application Specific Integrated Circuit’. Often compared to GPUs, ASICs are specially made for mining and may offer significant power savings.
Bitcoin Bitcoin is the first decentralised, open source cryptocurrency that runs on a global peer to peer network, without the need for middlemen and a centralised issuer.
Block Blocks are packages of data that carry permanently recorded data on the blockchain network.
Blockchain A blockchain is a shared ledger where transactions are permanently recorded by appending blocks. The blockchain serves as a historical record of all transactions that ever occurred, from the genesis block to the latest block, hence the name blockchain.
Block Explorer Block explorer is an online tool to view all transactions, past and current, on the blockchain. They provide useful information such as network hash rate and transaction growth.
Block Height The number of blocks connected on the blockchain.
Block Reward A form of incentive for the miner who successfully calculated the hash in a block during mining. Verification of transactions on the blockchain generates new coins in the process, and the miner is rewarded a portion of those.
Central Ledger A ledger maintained by a central agency.
Confirmation The successful act of hashing a transaction and adding it to the blockchain.
Consensus Consensus is achieved when all participants of the network agree on the validity of the transactions, ensuring that the ledgers are exact copies of each other.
Cryptocurrency Also known as tokens, cryptocurrencies are representations of digital assets.

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