Economics Book Review – The Rise of Money, a Financial History of the World by Niall Ferguson

Cryptocurrency is a digital asset that is used primarily as a transactional medium to secure financial transactions, control the creation of additional assets, and verify any asset transfer using strong cryptographic technology. It is also known as a form of digital currency or virtual currency. In contrast to central bank systems, it is a decentralized control and financial transaction system that works via a blockchain that is mainly used for financial transactions.

The first decentralized virtual currency that was developed in 2009 is Bitcoin, a virtual currency unit that works independently and without the support of a central bank or an administrator. Since then, around 4,000 old coins of different Bitcoin variants have been developed. Bitcoin is considered an electronic peer-to-peer checkout system in which users can carry out transactions directly and without intermediaries.

Blockchain is a data file consisting of numerous blocks, in which all previous Bitcoin transactions are recorded and new ones are created. The normal average time between blocks is approximately 10 minutes. The most common use of Bitcoin is supported by external software called Bitcoin Wallet. With this software, the transaction can be easily saved, received and managed by Bitcoin units. In order to be able to carry out transactions with Bitcoin, an account must be available on one of the Bitcoin exchanges around the world and transfer the Fiat currency to this account. This means that the account holder can carry out future transactions with these funds. In addition to Bitcoin, Petro is one of the other sources of cryptocurrency that is mainly used for oil and mineral reserves.

There are some advantages and disadvantages to using digital currencies. The main advantages of using a virtual currency are:

• Offers a fast transparency layer: –

Bitcoin is usually operated using a blockchain ledger that records and monitors every single transaction. As soon as a transaction has been carried out and entered in this ledger, it is considered static. These transactions can be checked at any time in the future and thus additionally guarantee security and data protection with regard to all transactions made via a specific account.

• Fast processing and portable use: –

With a single storage drive, billions of dollars of Bitcoin can easily be transferred from one place to another without being recognized. When carrying out transactions of any kind, the involvement of third parties can be eliminated by using this Bitcoin technology. This leads to a simple and quick transaction without the consent of a third party.

• Low transaction costs: –

The transaction costs associated with exchanging these digital currencies are much lower, making them more affordable to the world population than the real currency. Therefore, the cost of each type of transaction is very low, which is beneficial for the population when performing transactions.

• Combating and eradicating poverty: –

Often the banking systems and financial institutions do not offer help or support, especially for backward classes in rural areas. Bitcoin is an alternative in cases where it expands its solid financial services to anyone with internet access. It often serves as support for poor and oppressed classes, who in most cases are not given a viable alternative.

With the arrival of a new or the latest technology, there are also some negative factors, which are as follows:

• Ignorance and distrust of the population: –

Due to the lack of knowledge of digital currencies, people tend to become suspicious of their widespread use. As a result, there are very few business systems that accept these cryptocurrency sources, which limits the business systems that prefer to use the virtual currency for their daily transactions.

• Non-traceable transactions: –

Since transactions made with Bitcoin are incomprehensible, it offers space for criminal transactions. In such cases, drug dealers and unscrupulous people use such a virtual currency so that their illegal activities cannot be easily exposed.

• Volatility and uncertainty: –

The cryptocurrency is volatile at times and changes frequently on a large scale. Sometimes people make a lot of money when market prices of these virtual currencies skyrocket, and sometimes they face huge losses when the price collapses.

Cryptocurrency is an innovative concept for amateurs that can potentially disrupt the entire financial market. It is true that this digital currency has quickly caught the world's attention. Every new technology on the market always has advantages and disadvantages. To get the most out of it, you have to look at both sides before making decisions.

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