A blockchain is a decentralized log of all transactions executed among peers on a peer-to-peer network. Each block is then ‘chained’ to the next block, using a cryptographic signature.
Participants can validate transactions without a central clearing body by utilizing this method. Fund transfers, trade settlements, voting, and other problems could be addressed using this technology.
Slightly confusingly, this ledger is not stored in one place but on millions of computers worldwide. This makes it almost impossible for hackers to corrupt or overload.
The blockchain acts as a transparent and secure system that publicly records every transaction in chronological order.
It also allows everyone in the network to see every account balance, which prevents anyone from using the same coins twice (like counterfeit money).
The bitcoin blockchain was developed by Satoshi Nakamoto, an unknown person or group, in 2009 to serve as the public transaction ledger for bitcoin.
As it is expected that blockchain will be adopted for mainstream financial transactions, it can be considered an enabler of digital currency and added as an additional layer between the banking system and the consumer world.