By Eric Ervin via Iris.xyz

Here’s a guide to help explain terminology and facts to clients and would-be investors.

What are crypto-currencies, and how are they different from blockchain?

Crypto-currencies, such as Bitcoin and Ethereum, are a new investment class achieving global adoption, developed using blockchain technology. Bitcoin was the first application of blockchain technology and is the most popular crypto-currency in the market today.

What is blockchain technology?

Blockchain is a secure protocol for providing an immutable ledger of transaction and data. The ‘block’ in ‘blockchain’ refers to a ‘block of information.’ It is distributed and maintained over a peer-to-peer network, without the use of a central authority. In other words, a blockchain establishes ‘who owns what’ between individuals who may have different objectives. Unlike financial ledgers, this new type of ‘blockchain ledger’ is not only more secure but can be applied to many sectors outside of finance – any sector/business/transaction that necessitates agreement and simultaneous coordination among multiple participants around the globe.

Blockchain’s innovation is the way it distributes and verifies ledgers through automation, cryptography, and decentralization. Importantly, there is no single source (or middleman) for the data— it is distributed among all participants.

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