March 21, 2019

A blockchain is a decentralized network in which transactions are recorded on a public ledger in a series of “blocks.” A large group of computers (miners) independently verify every transaction in order for it to be accepted by the system as a whole. In a blockchain, it’s impossible to rewrite transactions. A ledger can be modified with new information, but there will always be a record of previous transactions. This is called an “immutable ledger.” There is no single access point, making it highly secure and almost impossible to hack or manipulate.

A blockchain is effectively used to track and record transactions within a specific network. For instance, a real estate company may choose to use a blockchain to track all transactions in the sale of a home. The use of a blockchain dramatically reduces human error, almost making it negligible.  Blockchains also allow for the use of smart contracts - contracts that are written into the code of the blockchain, so that when some set of requirements occur, it automatically triggers the next step. This can save companies money spent on regulatory oversight and employees to manage these contracts.

Blockchains are often confused with Distributed Ledgers (DLT), but these are not the same.

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