Understanding Blockchain, Cryptocurrency & Bitcoin

New technologies are being developed all the time, and it can be hard to keep up.

In the past few years, blockchain, cryptocurrency, and Bitcoin have been getting more attention. You’ve probably heard of them before, but you may not know what they are or how they work.

As a CIO, you also have to think about how new technologies could be used at your company and how they could fit into your budget. Staying on top of new technologies helps you prepare to hire the IT professionals required to implement them.

Here’s what you need to know about blockchain, cryptocurrency, and Bitcoin.


Blockchain is a shared digital ledger that can be used to record transactions. Every record in the ledger is known as a block, and each block is linked to the next. Blocks can’t be erased, and the chain can only be updated with consensus from the participants in the ledger. Since it’s a peer-to-peer network, there’s no need for an administrator to manage the database.

This new technology has exciting implications for businesses.

Since blockchain records can’t be modified, this technology is ideal for recordkeeping purposes. It’s also ideal for auditing purposes. Companies in the financial services and healthcare industries have been exploring using blockchain technology. In financial services, blockchain can be used to transfer money without paying fees to a middleman, among its other uses. In healthcare, blockchain can be used to securely store and transfer sensitive patient records.


Cryptocurrencies are digital, alternative currencies. They’re not issued by authorities like central banks. Instead, they’re decentralized. They’re peer-to-peer currencies, so people can electronically send payments to each other without involving a middleman. Cryptocurrencies use cryptography as their main security feature. Cryptography means the information is encrypted.

Cryptocurrencies are recognized at an international level. That means people in different countries can send money to each other without worrying about exchange rates. For companies who do business internationally, this could be an attractive alternative to traditional money transfers.

Transactions made with cryptocurrency are anonymous, unlike other digital payment methods. The anonymity has benefits for businesses and customers. When customers pay with cryptocurrency, merchants don’t get access to their whole credit line. Merchants are only sent the cryptocurrency. This could help reduce identity theft, which is good for everyone.

In total, there are over 700 types of cryptocurrencies. These cryptocurrencies range from very well-known to obscure. There are so many cryptocurrencies because anyone can make one. If someone thinks they can improve on existing cryptocurrencies, nothing is stopping them from trying.


Bitcoin was the first decentralized cryptocurrency. It’s the most well-known type of cryptocurrency, and that means it’s the de facto standard. It leads other cryptocurrencies in the size of its user base and its popularity. Other cryptocurrencies are gaining in popularity, but they still haven’t reached the level of Bitcoin.

People can use bitcoins to send money directly to each other, but they can also use them to pay businesses. Many companies are now accepting bitcoins. Even large companies like Microsoft and Overstock.com are accepting payments through Bitcoin. Small businesses are also starting to accept these payments.

For businesses, there are advantages to accepting Bitcoin payments. When you get paid through credit cards, you have to pay merchant fees to the credit card companies. These fees can be as high as three percent, which means the charges add up quickly. Accepting payments through services like PayPal also subject your company to merchant fees. Using Bitcoin allows you to bypass the middleman and cut out the merchant fees. This means you can make more money and also pass some savings on to your customers. It could also help you attract customers who like paying with Bitcoin, rather than with traditional payment methods.

Hire a Recruiter

Blockchain, cryptocurrency, and Bitcoin are set to disrupt many industries. Work with a recruiter to hire the tech experts you need to prepare for these changes and stay ahead of the curve.

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