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Blockchain Definition

What is a Blockchain?

A blockchain is a decentralized public ledger that helps facilitate secure digital transactions.  It acts as a public database that anyone with the right software can access and read. Data can only be added by the data owners that are verified using cryptographic keys. The data is then added to a block and broadcasted out to be confirmed typically by miners or nodes. Once the block is confirmed it is then part of the blockchain which cannot be altered since it is now public record and copies are held by a global network of computers. Since there is no “official” copy it is extremely hard to change the public ledger the data’s quality is maintained by this database replication and computational trust.

BTC, Bitcoin, Blockchain Works

Blockchain Example

This technology has many great use cases but the most popular is as a use of currency.  It is used in cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Litecoin, Dash and many other.  The reason that it works so well as a currency is that a consensus is required from the members of the global network and once a block has been confirmed and validated it will be permanently recorded. No one, not even a system administrator, can delete any part since it is replicated through the network.

Related Terms

What is an ICO? An Initial Coin Offering (ICO) is a way for a company to crowdfund and distribute a token or coin for cryptocurrency prior to release on exchanges.
Block Reward A block reward is the amount of Bitcoin or cryptocurrency that is awarded to a miner for confirmation of transactions in a block.
Ethereum Ethereum is a blockchain-based distributed computing platform that hosts smart contract functionality. Ether tokens are exchanged for running the contracts.
What is a Blockchain and Why it’s Important? Blockchain is the system that underpins Bitcoin and all the other cryptocurrencies. This techology has the chance to shape many new and old industries.