Cryptocurrencies have seen an explosion in popularity since they rose to prominence in 2009 and there are now over two thousand in existence. Some of the ‘major’ cryptocurrencies include Bitcoin, Ethereum and Litecoin. These are among the most traded cryptocurrencies worldwide, with the largest market caps.
Like all cryptocurrencies, the majors are digital assets that secure and verify transactions using computer science and complex mathematics, known as cryptography. Unlike traditional (fiat) currencies, they are not currently issued or backed by a central authority such as a government. Instead, they run across a network of computers and are underpinned by blockchain technology – a permanent record of transactions that cannot be altered without the consensus of the network.