Cryptocurrency accounts for the identity of its users both at the beginning and at the end of transactions through digital wallets where tokens are stored, instead of bank accounts. Photo: Shutterstock The terminology around the whole phenomenon of blockchain technology is still heavily in flux.

It is sometimes also referred to as ‘shared ledger technology’ (SLT) or a ‘distributed database’. A blockchain is operated by parties referred to as ‘miners’ and other times ‘nodes’ or ‘validators’.

The nodes might be ‘partial’ (as opposed to ‘full function’) and some of the miners might be in a ‘mining pool’. The essential characteristics of the blockchain are the distribution of ledger copies and the independently verified consensus process that is used to validate any changes.

It also streamlines transactions by removing third-party middlemen. Other important facets are immutability and transparency of the ledger, which are vital to the existence of trust among parties.

As most ledger protocols currently function, no single party can unilaterally override a transaction added to the ledger. Advanced cryptography ensures that altering the ledger comes with high computational costs, thus ensuring immutability. Read more from…

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