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Glossary

Understanding crypto lingo and terminology can be difficult. Use the Swyftx Learn glossary to get up to speed.

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51% Attack

A 51% attack, also known as a ‘Majority Attack’, is when hackers take control of a blockchain network by controlling more than 50 percent of total hashing power. This will either change, halt or reuse coins which will have an adverse reaction to the network. 

A

Addresses

Addresses are unique sequences of numbers and letters that designate a location of a wallet within the associated blockchain.  

Airdrop

Airdrops are an allocation of coins that are gifted to holders of a specific token. Airdrops are different from coin allocations during ICOs because recipients don't have to buy anything, nor do they need any special qualifications for receiving these gifts. 

Algorithm

Algorithms are instructions that help computers conduct tasks. In mathematics and computer science, algorithms should be designed to provide unambiguous steps compatible with a particular problem or goal at hand. Think of an algorithm as a set of commands written in sequence by programmers for their programs to run smoothly from beginning to end without any glitches along the way. 

All Time High (ATH)

ATH is the abbreviated form of “All-Time High’’ and is used to describe the highest price an asset has ever achieved. 

All Time Low (ATL)

ATL is the abbreviated form of “All-Time Low” and is refers to the lowest price an asset has ever dropped to. 

Altcoins

Altcoin is the term given to describe digital assets, such as coins and tokens, other than Bitcoin. This comes from thinking about how Bitcoin is the original cryptocurrency, and all others alternate or alternatives. 

AML

AML is the abbreviated form of “Anti-Money Laundering”. 

Anti-Money Laundering

Money laundering is a process of concealing the source or origin of money obtained through illegal means. This practice often involves converting ill-gotten gains into legal assets by way of disguise, such as passing it off as earned income from trading stocks. Money laundering laws exist to prevent criminals who engage in these practices from profiting illegally and moving illicit funds across borders without being detected. 

Application Specific Integrated Circuit (ASIC)

A piece of computer hardware that has been designed to mine cryptocurrency. They are specifically built for efficient hashing. They are far more effective than graphics cards or CPUs. 

Arbitrage

Arbitrage is the process of buying and selling assets in different markets to profit from a margin that exists between two exchanges. For example, traders could buy an asset on one exchange but sell it at a higher price on another exchange by taking advantage of this difference before someone else does. 

Ask Price

An “ask price” is the price a seller is asking for in return for the amount of an asset they are offering for sale. 

Atomic Swap

An atomic swap is a decentralized trade of cryptocurrencies between two users without any intermediaries. It enables the trade of one cryptocurrency to another, even if they are running on different blockchains. 

Auction

An auction is a live event where users buy items through bidding. The starting bid for an item will be presented by the auctioneer, and then there's a live-bidding process until the highest bidder wins. 

B

Bag

A “bag” means you own a large amount of a certain cryptocurrency. In the crypto space, a bag means coins and tokens one is holding as part of their portfolio. The term bag can be used for any amount but when the value is high, someone might say they are carrying heavy bags. 

Bear Trap

A bear trap is a false technical indication of a downward movement in the price, which tricks other traders to sell or open short positions. This causes prices to drop and sometimes rebound when those who set up this trap buy their assets back at lower rates than they sold them for. A group of people use this strategy with intentions on profiting from it by manipulating market trends. 

Bear/Bearish/Bear Market

If the price of cryptocurrencies has a negative price movement, it is considered to be in bearish trend. A bearish trend can happen when there's heavy pessimism about declining market prices and traders are concerned that their investments may fall. It is thought that the term “bear” in this context comes from the way a bear attacks its prey, which is by swiping its paws downwards. 

Bid-Ask Price

Bid-ask price refers to the highest buy order price that is currently available. This involves both the lowest (ask price) and the highest (bid price).  

Bitcoin

Bitcoin is a virtual currency that runs on a decentralized network of computers. Bitcoin may be described as cryptocurrency, digital money, or digital gold. You can buy Bitcoin through Swyftx.

Bitcoin Pizza

In the year 2010, a man named Laszlo Hanyec brought two pizzas for 10,000 Bitcoin. This purchase came to be known as Bitcoin Pizza and is considered one of greatest feats in cryptocurrency history. 

Block

The term block refers to computer files that store transaction data. These blocks are arranged in a linear sequence which forms an endless chain of blocks (a blockchain). 

Block Explorer

A tool that allows people to see all the transactions happening on a blockchain in real time. This can be used as an analysis for seeing how fast or slow it is, and what kind of growth there has been over time. In short, this is a customizable way to view data related specifically to blockchains. 

Block Height

Block height represents the number of blocks that were confirmed in a blockchain network's entire history - from block zero (the Genesis Block) to the most recent one in the blockchain. 

Block Reward

A new block reward is created when a miner successfully calculates the hash of transactions, consisting of two components. One component consists of newly generated coins and represents the biggest part of the block reward. It is called the "block subsidy." The other portion comes from transaction fees which are given to miners for validating each individual payment on their ledger. 

Blockchain

A blockchain is a linear sequence of blocks that are connected to each other through the use of cryptographic techniques. This makes it so all information about transactions can be gathered and recorded inside these iterations, which creates an endless chain of data - hence why it’s called a "blockchain." 

Breakout

A breakout can be either a buy or sell signal, depending on the direction of the move. A trader may enter into a long or short position once price has moved outside of their defined support or resistance area. For example, if an asset's stock moves above its previous high trading range it provides traders with a bullish signal, while breaking below a previous low is bearish in nature. 

BTFD

The phrase “buy the f#%king dip” is typically used in times of currency depreciation. Commonly, a person uses this term when they purchase a stock or commodity during a price decline and are excited about it. 

Bull/Bullish

A bullish investor believes that the price of one or more crypto assets will rise. The term bull refers to positive movement, so a person who is confident in their position should be considered as "bullish.” The term bull is thought to derive from the way a bull attacks, which is by thrusting its horns upwards. 

Burned

Coin-burning is the permanent elimination of existing cryptocurrency coins from circulation to make them unusable. Coin burning is an intentional action exercised by coin creators to remove a number of tokens in order for their value and liquidity to increase over time, as opposed to losing liquidity and value once they are used up. 

Buy Wall

A buy wall is the result of a single huge order or multiple large orders that are put at the same price in an order book. A wealthy individual, group of traders, or institution can create it by placing one big Limit Order to buy when a cryptocurrency reaches a certain value. 

Buying the dip

“Buying the dip” means purchasing an a fundamentally strong asset when it dips in price. 

C

Candlestick

A candlestick is a visual representation of the price action of an asset during a specific time period. It shows open, high, low and close prices within this timeframe to help traders better comprehend market behaviours over given periods. 

Central bank/CBDC

As cryptocurrencies and stablecoins have become more popular, central banks are realising that they need to provide an alternative solution. A Central Banks Digital Currencies (CBDC) is virtual money backed by a central bank, which could potentially be integrated into mainstream society in the future. 

Central Ledger

A single entity has control of all financial records in a centralized manner. This is considered to be a Central Ledger, which consists of physical books or digital files used by individuals or organisations that record and collate economic transactions. 

Chain Linking

Chain Linking is the process that occurs when you transfer one cryptocurrency to another. This requires two separate blockchains, so they must link together in order for it to work properly and achieve its goal. Chainlink is an oracle network used by hybrid smart contracts on any blockchain platform - this means allowing them access to off-chain data securely. 

Cipher

Ciphers and cyphers are methods for encrypting information. A cipher is an algorithm that can be followed as a procedure to decrypt data, whereas a cypher refers to the actual process of decryption. 

Circulating Supply

The total number of coins in a cryptocurrency that are publicly tradable is considered the Circulating Supply. This does not include coins that are locked, reserved or have been burned, making them unavailable to public trading. 

Coin

A cryptocurrency or digital cash that is independent of any other blockchain platform. The term may also be used to describe an asset, which is not token-based. 

Cold Storage

Cold storage is an effective way to protect your cryptocurrency holdings offline. By keeping them in a location that's entirely separate from any internet access, you can prevent hackers from being able to steal it using traditional methods. Hardware wallets are the most popular form of cold storage.  

Collateral

When a person takes out a loan, they have to pledge something of value as collateral. The valuable asset will be forfeited if the person defaults on the loan. This helps ensure they will honour loan repayments. 

Confirmed

When a transaction is confirmed, it means that the network has approved the transaction and added it to the blockchain. 

Consensus

When a transaction is made, all nodes on the network verify that it is valid on the blockchain. They do so by running algorithms to solve mathematical problems and if they reach consensus, then transactions are approved for processing. 

Consensus Process

The nodes that are responsible for maintaining the blockchain ledger include those who decide whether to accept or reject a transaction. 

Consortium Blockchain

A blockchain owned and operated by a private party, yet publicly available to view. 

Cryptocurrency

Cryptocurrency is digital or virtual currency that is secured by cryptography, this prevents the illegal duplication of funds. Cryptocurrencies are built on decentralized networks, meaning they aren't controlled by singular entities such as banks or governments. 

Cryptographic Hash Function

A cryptographic hash function (CHF) is a mathematical equation that allows the user to verify data. It has many applications, including maintaining security and verifying authenticity in information systems. 

Cryptography

Cryptography is about hiding information using math and computation. It's the process of encoding or decoding data to guarantee its integrity and authenticity. 

D

Decentralised Application (dApp)

A blockchain-based program that is programmed to autonomously store data in a decentralized manner. There are no single entities controlling this process and the entire system runs on open-source technology with incentives for use in place via tokens or fees. 

Decentralised Autonomous Organisation (DAO)

Organizations that are run by a computer program that everyone has access to is called a DAO. This is a specific kind of organization based on open-source code and operated entirely by its community. It does not have any hierarchical management like other businesses. 

Decentralised exchange (DEX)

A decentralized exchange (DEX) is a secure way to purchase or sell cryptocurrencies without an intermediary. 

Decentralised finance (DeFi)

DeFi is a new form of finance that uses smart contracts to decentralize traditional financial instruments. DeFi does not rely on centralized institutions such as brokerages, exchanges, or banks and instead utilizes blockchain technology. 

Decryption

The process of turning encrypted ciphertext back into plain text (generally the reverse process to encryption). It decodes the information so that only authorized users can decrypt it. 

Deflation

When the demand for a particular cryptocurrency decreases, bringing down its price. 

Depth Chart

A constantly changing graph that shows the total number of bids and asks when trying to buy or sell an asset. 

Deterministic Wallet

A type of wallet that allows you to generate keys from a seed. If the wallet is lost, its key can be recovered through this process. Plus, when making transactions with it instead of generating new keys each time, variations are used which makes transfers faster and easier to store. 

Diamond hands

Someone who holds crypto assets adamantly, during a drop, despite the potential risks and losses involved along the way. They do this because they have a strong belief that the value will rise again. 

Difficulty

The term "difficulty" in the cryptocurrency space refers to how much effort is required for a miner's computer to solve complex math problems and complete transactions on their respective blockchains. If there are more people trying to mine at any given moment, this increases difficulty because it takes exponentially longer time periods until all members of the network have received confirmation about new blocks being mined.  

Digital Commodity

A digital commodity is an intangible asset that can be transferred electronically and has a certain value. 

Digital Currency

A digital currency is a type of currency that can be used as payment or to trade online. 

Digital Signature

A digital signature is used to confirm that a document being transmitted electronically is authentic. They generally appear as a code generated by public key encryption - something you can use to show that you know the private key is connected to the public one, without having actually revealing it. 

Distributed Ledger

A ledger that is stored in multiple locations so that any entries can be accessed and checked by a group of people. A database consensually shared across many different sites, institutions, or geographies which is accessible to anyone with the correct access rights. 

Diversification

An investment strategy that lowers a portfolio's risk and helps an investor achieve stable returns by building a mixed asset exposure. By having funds across different types of assets, the overall risks are reduced. 

Do Your Own Research (DYOR)

DYOR is an acronym for "do your own research". The process of researching a coin or token by yourself instead of following the advice or opinion of others. 

Dollar-Cost averaging (DCA)

Dollar Cost Averaging (DCA) is the investing of fixed dollar amounts over set intervals regardless of price. An investor invests in small increments rather than investing all at once. 

Double Spend

A fraudulent activity where a given amount of coins are spent more than once. This occurs when someone tries to send a cryptocurrency to two different wallets or locations at the same time. This is prevented through miners validating transactions. 

Dump

A “Dump” refers to the selling of all or a lot of your cryptocurrency. 

Dumping

Dumping is the term used when a lot of people decide to sell their cryptocurrency at once. This causes an abrupt downward movement or sharp plummet in price for that coin. 

Dust Transaction

Sometimes people will look to slow the network by deliberately flooding it with minor transactions that are incredibly small. These minuscule amounts of Bitcoin, called dust transactions, can be used as an attack on Bitcoin's blockchain for more nefarious purposes. 

E

Encryption

Converting plain text into unintelligible text with the use of a cipher to prevent unauthorised access to information or valuable data. 

ERC-20 tokens

An ERC-20 token is a type of token that is built on the Ethereum blockchain platform.  

Escrow

When an third-party intermediary is used to hold the funds during a transaction, those funds are being held in escrow. Once the transaction conditions have been met, the third party will release the funds. 

Ethereum

Ethereum is a blockchain platform with its own cryptocurrency, called Ether (ETH). It also has its very own programming language (Solidity) to build smart contracts and dApps on the network. You can buy Ethereum (ETH) through Swyftx

Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM)

The Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM) is essentially a decentralized computer. It is the runtime environment for smart contracts in Ethereum. It allows developers to create dApps without worrying about downtime and keeping all creative objects safe from any modifications. 

Exchange

The platform on which cryptocurrency trades are conducted. 

F

Fakeout

A situation where a trader enters into the market with an expectation that prices will go in one direction, but the opposite happens. 

Faucet

A website or app that offers to give you free cryptocurrency for connecting with them. You receive small amounts of crypto as a reward for completing easy tasks on the platform. 

Fiat

Fiat money is a form of currency that the government has declared to have value but is not backed by any physical commodity. 

FOMO

FOMO is an acronym for "fear of missing out". 

Forex (FX)

The Forex (FX) or Foreign Exchange market is the largest and most liquid financial market in the world, where people can buy or sell currencies. 

Fork

Forks happen when the software of different miners become misaligned. When a new version is created, resulting in two versions running side-by-side, it's termed as a fork. 

Frictionless

If there are no transaction costs or barriers to trade, the market is said to be frictionless. 

FUD

FUD is the acronym for "fear, uncertainty, and doubt". 

Full Node

Full nodes are nodes that download the complete history of a blockchain. They enforce all of its rules, which makes them part of the main network. Full nodes are an essential element for achieving consensus. 

Fundamental Analysis (FA)

A method that determines the intrinsic or “real” value of an asset, which is meant to be an objective measure of its worth. 

Fungible

"Fungible" refers to currencies or assets that can be traded or exchanged for one another and are equal in value. 

Futures Contract

A pre-approved contract between two entities to complete a transaction as soon as the value of a cryptocurrency hits a certain price. 

G

Gas

On the Ethereum network, Gas is a special unit that measures how much work it takes to complete certain tasks. This fee is measured in units of gas and gives an indication on computational resources required for said operation. 

Gas Limit

The maximum price a user is willing to pay when sending a transaction or performing an action on the Ethereum blockchain. This fee is calculated in gas units. A gas limit defines how much a user wants to pay for transactions or smart contract actions. 

Gas Price

The price of a transaction on the Ethereum network is how much Ether you're willing to pay per unit of gas. 

Genesis Block

The genesis block is the first or earliest-created block of a blockchain. It's called "genesis" because it forms the root from which all other blocks branch off and expand upon, like roots on a tree trunk. 

Github

GitHub is a web-based, open-source development platform and hosting service that allows users to upload files, documents, and computer code. 

Golden cross

Occurs when a short-term moving average crosses above a long-term moving average, signalling an upward turn in the market. 

Group Mining

Group Mining is another term used to describe a mining pool, which is group of cryptocurrency miners who combine their computational resources over a network. 

Gwei

Gwei is the denomination of Ether used to measure gas prices. 

H

Halving

A halving event occurs when the block reward of a crypto asset like Bitcoin is reduced by half, creating an eventual finite supply. In the cryptocurrency space, this term refers to reducing the rate at which new coins are created and distributed. 

Hard Cap

A hard cap is the maximum number of tokens that can be sold during an initial coin offering (ICO). 

Hard Fork

A hard fork is a fork in the code of a blockchain network that results in two separate branches of the coin, one that keeps using the previous protocol and one that starts using the new version. For example, Bitcoin Cash was a hard fork of Bitcoin. 

Hardware Wallet

A physical device that stores cryptocurrency in its encrypted form. The hardware wallet also functions offline, meaning the private keys are never exposed to potential hackers. 

Hash

Mining algorithms take an arbitrary amount of data input and produce fixed-size enciphered text called a “hash”. 

Hash Rate

The number of hashes a computer can produce per second is called the hash rate, and it reveals how effective your device is at mining cryptocurrencies. 

Hashing Power

Hashing power is the amount of computational resources that your computer uses to run and solve different hashing algorithms, which are used for generating new cryptocurrencies and allowing transactions between them. 

High-frequency trading

A style of algorithmic trading that uses large volumes and automated buying and selling to purchase shares. 

HODL

HODL is a deliberately misspelled version of the word “hold”. It is used to encourage people not to impulsively sell when a cryptocurrency drops dramatically or rises and becomes highly profitable. HODL also acts as an acronym for “Hold on for dear life”. 

I

Iceberg Order

An order to buy or sell a large quantity of stock that, rather than being entered as one big trade, is broken up into several smaller trades. 

Initial Coin Offering (ICO)

The Initial Coin Offering (ICO) is a new approach for raising funds that uses digital currencies. It's often considered an innovative form of crowdfunding, where investors receive tokens in exchange for their money, which is invested into the business venture or project. 

Initial Public Offering (IPO)

An Initial Public Offering (IPO) is the moment a private company starts offering its shares to the public for their first time. 

Interoperability

Interoperability is the ability of blockchains to communicate with each other. This enables them to share information with any system that needs access to information across various networks. 

IOU

IOU stands for “I owe you”. It is an informal contract that acknowledges a debt one party owes to another. It can be verbal or written down. 

J

JOMO

People who are not involved in cryptocurrencies sometimes feel happy when prices decline, or a scam burns their money. They call this feeling "joy of missing out" (JOMO). 

K

KYC

KYC is an acronym for Know Your Customer / Know Your Client. It refers to the mandatory verification of a customer's identity before allowing them to perform larger trades or withdrawals. The process is intended to help prevent fraudulent activity. 

L

Lambo

Lambo is short for Lamborghini, which is used to express that someone is getting rich quickly and therefore will be able to buy an expensive exotic car, such as a Lamborghini. 

Latency

Latency is the time delay between submitting a transaction and the confirmation of acceptance by the network. 

Ledger

A ledger is a record of financial transactions that lists all past transactions and also records new transactions in the process. It is also a popular hardware wallet brand.  

Leverage

Leverage refers to loans from exchanges or borrowed capital from a broker that is used to perform large trades. 

Lightning Network

A lightning network is a layer 2 scaling solution operating on top of a blockchain which enables increased transaction speed. Currently, the main network using this solution is Bitcoin. 

Limit Order/Limit Buy/Limit Sell

A type of crypto order, which specifies that a cryptocurrency can only be bought or sold at a certain price.  

Liquidity

Liquidity refers to selling or buying an asset without causing a major impact in the market price. Liquidity also refers to how easy it is to convert a particular cryptocurrency into a cash value and whether or not this can be achieved without the asset’s value drastically decreasing in the process. 

Locktime

Locktime (or timelock) is a constraint placed on a cryptocurrency that ensures that transactions are locked until the specified block height or time. 

Long

Storing and stockpiling a large amount of cryptocurrency in the anticipation that it will increase in value means you are going 'long' (long term investment). 

M

Mainnet

An independent blockchain that runs its own network using proprietary technology and protocol. Mainnet facilitates cryptocurrency transactions on a distributed ledger. 

Maker

When you place certain types of orders, they do not trade immediately and so your purchase stays in the book waiting for someone else to match with. Maker can also refer to the digital token created on the Ethereum platform. 

Malware

Malware is used to describe any software that is specifically designed to damage, disrupt or to gain unauthorized access to a computer or server system. In particular malware that targets the crypto-community allows someone to take control of a computer or server to mine for cryptocurrencies without the original operator of the computer or server knowing that the device has been compromised. 

Margin Bear Position

Margin Bear Position refers to the position of someone going ''short'' believing that the asset will decrease in value and will in return seek to profit from the decreasing value. 

Margin Bull Position

Margin Bull Position refers to the position of someone going "long" with the anticipation that the asset will increase over time. 

Margin Trading

Margin trading is a method of using borrowed funds to buy more than you can afford, with leverage. It’s used by incredibly experienced investors who know how to utilise increased buying power in trading. 

Market Capitalization

Market capitalization (or market cap) refers to the total value of all coins that have been mined. The market cap is often used as a gauge for how stable an asset is likely to be. Market cap is calculated by multiplying the number of coins in circulation by their current market price. 

Market Order

A Market Order is an order to buy or sell at the market's current best available price. 

Mining

Mining refers to the process of gaining cryptocurrencies by dedicating a significant amount of computing power to solve cryptographic equations. Mining is also the process involved in verifying transactions and adding them to the blockchain ledger.  

Mining Contract

A Mining Contract is a contract formed to borrow the hashing power of mining hardware over a stipulated amount of time. During this agreement, you will be guaranteed an agreed upon hash rate for your contribution. 

Mining Farm

A Mining Farm refers to a collective of miners devoted to mining cryptocurrencies. Mining Farms are typically a large physical space such as a warehouse whereby computer equipment is stored and used at low temperatures over long periods of time with all computing power dedicated to mining cryptocurrencies. 

Mining Pool

The process of pooling resources by a collective of miners who share their processing power of a network to split the rewards equally amongst all members in the pool. 

Money Services Business

Money Services Business (MSB) is a legal term associated with financial services used to transfer or convert money. 

Moon

''Moon'' or "to the moon" is often used to describe a particularly drastic upward trend in the market. This may also refer to the strong belief a market will have a sharp upward trend in the very near future. 

Moving Average Convergence Divergence (MACD)

Moving Average Convergence Divergence (MACD) refers to the technical analysis that identifies changes in a share price's momentum. 

Multi Signature/Multi Sig Wallets

Multi-Signature (Multisig) refers to requiring multiple keys or another party to authorize a cryptocurrency transaction. This also divides responsibility for cryptocurrency possessions amongst multiple people. 

Multipool Mining

If a pool of miners switch to mining an alternative cryptocurrency in order for them all to share a higher profit, this is often referred to as "multipool mining". 

N

Network

Crypto networks are decentralized systems, which are coordinated by an underlying blockchain-based asset. This currency or asset acts as an incentive to ensure all members of the network work towards the success of the network. 

Node

When a computer is connected to a blockchain’s network it is commonly referred to as a “node” on the network. 

Nonce

When a miner hashes the transaction, they generate what is called a "nonce". A nonce is an arbitrary number that can only be used once in order to authenticate and verify transactions through cryptography. This random or pseudo-random data issued with authentication protocols ensures old communications cannot be reused. 

O

OCO

Acronym for "one cancels the other". When two orders for cryptocurrency are placed simultaneously, with a rule in place whereby if one is accepted, the other is cancelled. This means that as soon as one of the orders gets fully or partially filled, the other one will be automatically cancelled. 

Off-chain

Off-chain transactions refer to those occurring on a cryptocurrency network that move the value outside of the blockchain. Off-chain data is any non-transactional information too large for it to be stored in the Blockchain efficiently. 

Open-source

Open-Source refers to the collaboration between people whereby all parties involved are freely sharing information and findings. Open-source is highly pragmatic, as it drives towards goals with little or no regard for any particular ideology in place. The majority of open blockchain projects are developed in open-source software. 

Oracle

Blockchain oracles are third-party services that provide smart contracts with external information. They serve as bridges between blockchains and the outside world, allowing them to execute agreements more effectively by accessing off-chain data (data which is not on chain). 

Orderbook

An order book is an electronic list of buy and sell orders for a security or other instrument. Order books are organized by price level. 

Overbought

Overbought is a term used when the market believes that a crypto asset is trading at levels above its intrinsic value. This generally describes recent or short-term movement in prices of these securities and reflects expectations. 

Oversold

The opposite of “overbought”. The term "oversold" has been used to indicate when an asset is trading at a price lower than its true value. 

P

Paper hands

Someone who has a low-risk tolerance for high volatility stocks that they have purchased. These people will sell too early or fold because of how risky it can be. The opposite of the term "diamond hands". 

Paper Wallet

A printed version of the digital wallet that holds your cryptocurrency. It could be private keys, a seed phrase or even a QR code. 

Peer to Peer (P2P)

Peer-to-peer (or P2P) refers to the exchange of an asset between two parties without the facilitation of a third, more centralized authority. 

Phishing

Phishing is when an attacker tries to access your sensitive personal information, such as digital wallet passwords or account details. This is usually done via emails or private messages on social media. Scammers using this method often impersonate a well-known crypto exchange or a trusted individual. 

Ponzi scheme

A Ponzi scheme is a fraudulent investment in which clients are promised large profit with little to no risk. However, the returns only come from signing up new investors. When new investors stop coming in, so does the money to support the scheme. 

Pre-Sale

A pre-sale is a way to raise funds for a project before an Initial Coin Offering (ICO). The sale of tokens in this phase are used to accelerate growth and development towards launch. 

Price Action

Price action refers to the movement of a financial asset over set periods. These graphs are used by traders and investors alike as they identify trade setups or trends. These charts are commonly referred to as "candlestick charts". 

Private Key

A private key is a critical component of cryptocurrency that allows users to access their own funds. The key itself is a series of alphanumeric characters which is almost impossible for a hacker to crack.  

Proof of Authority (PoA)

Proof of Authority (PoA) is a method which validates transactions and interactions within a network as well as grants the holder the right to create blocks in a private blockchain. 

Proof of Stake (PoS)

Proof of Stake (PoS) is a consensus mechanism that randomly selects a user to validate block transactions, depending on how many coins they are staking (or lending to the network). This is the second most used consensus mechanism, behind PoW. 

Proof of Work (PoW)

Proof of Work (PoW) is the original blockchain consensus mechanism, which is used by Bitcoin and many other blockchains. Using PoW, miners contribute computational power to solve complex cryptographic problems to validate transactions and create new blocks. The miner who solves the problem first is given the block reward, which is an amount of freshly mined coins. 

Protocols

Protocols are a basic set of rules which dictate and define how data can be exchanged across a network. 

Public blockchain

A public blockchain is a blockchain that anyone can join without requiring permission. People who join this network can not only read and write but also participate in any events carried out on the network. As these networks are public, they are not controlled by a single entity. 

Public Key

Public keys are a critical component of cryptocurrency that facilitate transactions between parties. Much like a bank account number, public keys are used to receive funds, in this case cryptocurrencies. 

Pump and Dump

Pump and Dump simply refers to when an individual or group purchases a large quantity of coins in order to drive up demand and significantly in turn increase the value / price of the coin before selling all their coins at a profit. 

Pump/Pumping

A “pump” is when an individual or group purchases a large quantity of coins in order to increase demand, which in turn increases the coin's value. “Pumping” is generally used when a coin’s price is skyrocketing. 

R

Ransomware

Crypto ransomware is a type of program that encrypts files stored on a device and takes your files hostage. It will demand payment in exchange for a decryption key allowing you to access your files. 

REKT

Internet slang for “wrecked” meaning completely destroyed. However, in the crypto community this is commonly used when someone has incurred a heavy loss due to a bad financial decision. 

Relative Strength Index (RSI)

The Relative Strength Index (RSI) looks at both the strength and velocity of price swings. It measures recent changes in prices exponentially with more weight given to newer data points than older ones. 

Return on Investment (ROI)

Return on Investment (ROI) is used to measure and evaluate the efficiency or profitability of an investment as well as compare and measure the amount of return. ROIs offer insight as to when you would expect to see a return over the initial investment cost. 

Ring Signature

A ring signature is a form of digital signature that is used by one person in the group but it remains partly anonymous and will always hide who originally signed. 

Roadmap

A roadmap is a business plan that be used to decide what the next steps should be. It divides the short-term, long term, and even multiple goals into flexible timelines with realistic estimations of time frames for each step. 

S

Satoshi Nakamoto

Satoshi Nakamoto is the name used by an unknown person or group that created Bitcoin. Furthermore, they also devised blockchain technology. 

Satoshi/Sats

A Satoshi represents the smallest unit of Bitcoin currency, named after Satoshi Nakamoto the creator of Bitcoin. 1 Satoshi is equal to 0.00000001 Bitcoin.  

Sats

Sats is an abbreviation of Satoshis, the smallest denominations of Bitcoin. Sats can be used to refer to the price of an asset relative to Bitcoin. 

Scrypt

Scrypt is a powerful Proof of Work algorithm that many cryptocurrencies use. A Scrypt miner can be thought of as specialised hardware designed to mine coins encoded with this type of mining script, like Litecoin or DogeCoin for example. 

Seed phrase

Seed phrases are a series of words which are randomly generated by a cryptocurrency wallet, which will give you access to your wallet in the event that you delete or lose your password. 

Segregated Witness

Segregated Witness (or SegWit) is the process of segregating the witness (signatures from transactional data). SegWit's main purpose is to increase block capacity whilst also increasing transaction speeds. 

SegWit

SegWit is an abbreviation of Segregated Witness. 

Selfish Mining

Selfish mining is a strategy in which the miner withholds and releases blocks to gain competitive advantage over other miners. Selfish mining is also when a cartel of people act together for profit and influence over a network. 

Sell Wall

When a substantially large amount of sell orders or the cumulation of sell orders at one price level or an order book are placed it is referred to as a sell wall. 

SHA-256

Secure Hashing Algorithm (SHA)-256 refers to the hashing algorithm used in Bitcoin, and numerous altcoins. The number 256 refers to the unique 256-bit signature text. 

Sharding

Sharding is a form of partitioning that allows for the spread of both computational storage and device workload. This in turn, results in more transactions per second as well as reducing latency on the blockchain network by splitting it into different 'shards'. 

Shit Coin

A term used to describe a coin which holds little to no value. 

Short

"Short" or "Shorting" refers to the sale of cryptocurrency at a high price with the expectation that the price will fall. Short traders look to buy back at a lower price. 

Smart Contracts

Smart contracts are contracts written in computer code. They are used to automate the execution of agreements so that all parties involved in the smart contract can immediately benefit from the outcome without incurring any additional time lost. 

Soft Fork

A change to a software protocol, which results in transactions that would previously have been valid becoming invalid. Users and miners have to update to the latest protocol in order to continue participating in the network. 

Software Wallet

A software wallet refers to an application on a device that stores both public and private keys that are required in cryptocurrency transactions. 

Solidity

Solidity is an object-oriented, high level programming language for implementing smart contracts on the Ethereum blockchain. It can be used in conjunction with any other application that needs this functionality. For instance, alternate cryptocurrencies or blockchains, like IPFS, to create decentralized applications (dApps). 

Source code

Source code is a collection of code used to create commands or instructions that performs a specific function.  

Stablecoin

Stablecoins are cryptocurrencies that are tied to tangible assets, such as gold, or fiat currencies, such as the U.S. Dollar or the Euro. 

Staking

Staking is the process of locking funds in a cryptocurrency wallet in order to support the operations of a Proof of Stake network. Stakers receive staking rewards for their contributions. 

Staking pool

A staking pool is when a group of stakeholders combine their staking power, which increases the chance for successfully validating new blocks. 

Store of value

A store of value refers to when a particular asset, commodity, or currency retains its value into the future without much deterioration. In the cryptocurrency community, store of value refers to when a currency has held its value for a prolonged period of time without a sizable decrease in transactional value. 

Supply chain

A supply chain is an integral part of business operations that facilitates the creation and distribution of particular products. 

Support/Support levels

Support or support level refer to the level that is held by a price or asset, which prevents the asset from further downwards movement. 

T

Taker

When someone places an order that is instantly matched with an existing order on the order book that person is referred to as a ''taker''. 

Technical Analysis (TA)

Technical Analysis (TA) utilises historical data on a particular cryptocurrency to form a forecast in regards to its future trading value. 

Test Net

A test net is used to test a new version of a blockchain before it is published or ‘’goes live’’. This test often runs in tandem with its active blockchain counterpart and does not affect the value. 

Ticker

A unique combination of letters and, sometimes, numbers used to shorten the name of a particular stock or in this case, a cryptocurrency. 

Timestamp

A timestamp signifies the time at which a block has been mined and validated by the blockchain network. This is often stored as a unique serial on each block. 

Token

Tokens are cryptocurrencies that are generally built on top of other blockchains. They might represent an asset or have a specific use on a network.  

Tokenless Ledger

When a distributed ledger exists but doesn't need a currency in which to operate they are called "tokenless ledgers". Miners from that blockchain will not be rewarded/paid for upholding the network. 

TOR

Acronym for “Terms of Reference”. 

Total supply

The total supply refers to all coins or tokens that currently exist, which may either be in circulation or are locked. While it also refers to both the total amount of coins already mined / validated minus the total number of coins that were previously burned or destroyed. 

Transaction

When a cryptocurrency is moved from one entity to another on a blockchain network. 

Transaction Fee

Transaction fees are paid for making a transaction. They are used to compensate miners and validators who maintain the network. 

Transactions Per Second (TPS)

Transactions per second (or TPS) is the total number of transactions that a blockchain network can process each second. 

Trustless

Trustless is a term used in the cryptocurrency community to clarify that there is no individual that has absolute authority. In fact, the participants involved do not need to know or trust one another in order for the system to function. Consensus is achieved without any participants needing to know or trust anything but the system itself. 

Turing Completeness

A Turing complete system in principle is a system whereby any conceivable calculations can be achieved and in turn, can solve any computational problem. 

U

Unconfirmed

An unconfirmed transaction is defined as an transaction that has not been recorded or verified on the blockchain. 

Unspent Transaction Output

Small amounts of cryptocurrency that is left unspent after someone completes a transaction.  

UTXO

UTXO is an acronym for Unspent Transaction Output 

V

Virtual machine

A virtual machine is the direct emulation of a computer system and is considered to be in likeness to a physical machine with the same hardware. 

Volatility

Volatility refers to how quickly the price of an asset changes over a set period of time. Volatility is often used to assess the imminent risks associated with investing in a particular asset at the time. 

Volume

Volume, or trading volume, is the sum total of trades taking place, often within a 24-hour period. 

W

Wallet

A wallet is a string of unique code and represents an address within a blockchain. The wallet itself is public but within it, the wallet can hold private keys which determine the wallet’s total balance of crypto. The wallet itself can exist either in software, hardware, or other forms. 

Whale

A term used to describe an extremely wealth investor or investors who have enough funds to hold significant sway or manipulation over a particular market. 

Whitelist

Whitelists are used to engage interested parties to sign up with the intent to purchase prior to an ICO. 

Whitepaper

A whitepaper is designed to offer technical information as well as explain the purpose of the coin it represents. Whitepapers often contain a roadmap to showcase its plans for the future and its direction to entice investors ahead of an ICO. 

Wick

The term ‘’wick’’ is used to describe where the price of a particular asset is fluctuating to. The wick represents the high and low during a specific trading interval. 

Z

Zero Confirmation Transaction

Zero Confirmation Transaction is a transaction that has not yet been confirmed by the network.