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Cryptocurrencies for beginners.

What are cryptocurrencies?

A cryptocurrency is something similar to digital money. With it you can pay your friends for your share of the bar, buy that pair of socks you're wearing, book flights and hotels for your next holiday. Because cryptocurrencies are digital, you can transfer them to your friends and family no matter where they are in the world. Similar to PayPal or bank transfers, right? Well, it's not really, it's much more interesting!

As you may know, the online payment gateways we know today belong to organisations. They hold your money and you have to request some transaction or transfer on your behalf if you want to spend on something.

With cryptocurrencies, there is no organisation. So you, your friends and family can be your own bank, because your computer connects to other people's computers, which allows direct communication, I mean, no middlemen!.

To use your cryptocurrencies you don't need to register on a website, use your email address or a password. You can download a wide range of apps on your smartphone to send and receive cryptocurrencies in a matter of minutes.

Why are they called cryptocurrencies?

The name cryptocurrencies is the combination of cryptography and currency. With the use of cryptocurrencies, we use advanced mathematics to provide greater security for our funds, ensuring that no one else except ourselves can spend our cryptocurrencies. You don't need to understand all of this: The apps you use will do all the heavy lifting for you. You won't even know what's going on behind the scenes. So, this magic internet money doesn't belong to anyone and uses something known as cryptography to protect the system. But you already have several applications that make it easy for you to make payments to other people, so why should you care?

1. No restrictions

No one can stop you from using your cryptocurrencies. On the other hand, centralized payment services can freeze your accounts or prevent you from making transactions.

2. Resistant to censorship

Due to the structure in which the network was designed, it is virtually impossible for hackers or other attackers to disable the network.

3. A fast and inexpensive payment method

When you make a transaction with someone on the other side of the world, your money will reach them in a matter of seconds, at a fraction of the commission you pay for an international transfer. What about that "B" in Bitcoin that your friends and family talk so much about? That is the original cryptocurrency and to this day it is still the most popular.

Who invented the Bitcoin?

Surprisingly, no one knows who the creator of Bitcoin was. We only know his alias Satosi Nakamoto. Satosi could be a single person, a group of programmers or if you believe in some of the stranger theories it could turn out to be an alien or a secret government team. Satosi published a 9-page document in 2008, detailing how the Bitcoin system works. Months later, in 2009, his software was released.

Bitcoin provided the basis for many cryptocurrencies. Some are even based on the same software, while others took a different approach. Ok, but what is the different between all cryptocurrencies?

Making a list of all existing cryptocurrencies would take us many weeks. Some are faster than others, while others offer more privacy, while there are others that are more secure and even more programmable than the previous ones. There is a well-known saying in the crypto ecosystem: Do Your Own Research (or by its acronym, DYOR). We don't say it to be rude to the one who asks, but to help him. It means that you should not rely on a single source of information if not look beyond what you already know.

Before investing your money in any project, make sure you have done enough research.

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