Understanding all the terms used in the crypto markets can be quite overwhelming, especially since cryptocurrencies are still a relatively new asset class. That's why we’ve prepared this huge crypto glossary of the most important terms traders need to get started with trading cryptocurrency.
A 51% attack occurs in a network when one entity controls more than half of the mining power or tokens in a cryptocurrency network.
Altcoins are alternative cryptocurrencies to Bitcoin. Examples include Ether, Litecoin, and Cardano.
A string of letters and numbers representing a wallet where transactions can be sent to and from.
ATH, short for all-time high, refers to the highest price of an asset since its launch.
ATL, short for all-time low, is the lowest price of an asset since its launch.
Combines all methods of sharding into one form to boost communication and speed. It's currently used in the Elrond blockchain platform.
An airdrop is a marketing strategy employed in crypto projects that involves the distribution of free tokens to generate social media hype, reward holders, and build communities.
Automatically control the supply of algorithmic stablecoins while aiming to improve scalability, decentralisation, and transparency.
The yearly rate of interest a borrower must pay investors. It is expressed in percentage and determined by multiplying the periodic interest rate by the number of periods.
Annual percentage yield is the real rate of returns earned on an investment (ROI) on an annual basis, taking into account the effect of compound interest.
Uncollateralised digital assets designed to stabilise price and balance the circulating supply of an asset through being pegged to a reserve asset to minimise the volatility price swings.
Dedicated hardware for mining cryptocurrencies. They generate a lot of computing power, enabling users to find results to the cryptographic puzzles in proof-of-work cryptocurrencies quicker and more cost-efficiently.
An automated decentralised exchange protocol that relies on mathematical formulas to price assets, removing intermediaries from the trading process.
Bitcoin is a peer-to-peer decentralised digital currency for facilitating payments and exchanges without the need for financial middlemen.
Like Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash is a decentralised peer-to-peer currency for facilitating financial activities such as making payments to stores and merchants, remittances, and low-cost cross-border payments. However, Bitcoin Cash is a fork of the original Bitcoin protocol with a larger block size of 32MB.
Bitcoin halving is an event that occurs in the Bitcoin network after every 210,000 blocks where block rewards are reduced by 50%.
Unit files that store information about transactions completed during a given time frame in a cryptocurrency network. A group of cryptographically linked blocks constitutes a blockchain.
Blockchain is a distributed ledger for securely recording data by cryptographically linking blocks of data/transactions in a peer-to-peer network.
A term that refers large quantity (higher than average) of a specific crypto asset.
An individual or investor that continually holds a large quantity of an asset irrespective of its performance.
The process of appending a new transaction to the Tezos blockchain.
A technical standard used for the issuance and implementation of tokens on Binance Chain.
A token standard that allows users on BNB Chain (originally referred to as Binance Smart Chain) to deploy fungible tokens.
A BNB Chain (originally referred to as Binance Smart Chain) token standard that enables the generation of non-fungible tokens (NFTs). It serves as an extension of Ethereum's ERC-721.
A proposal that introduces a real-time burning mechanism to the BNB Chain (also known as Binance Smart Chain).
A standalone device or kiosk that allows users to trade (buy and sell) bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies from a terminal.
A metric used to measure the share market value of Bitcoin in the overall crypto market. It is expressed as the ratio between the market cap of Bitcoin to the rest of the cryptocurrency markets.
A block explorer is a tool for publicly auditing the entire transaction history of a blockchain network.
A person or group of people whose hardware is used to verify a block’s transaction and begin a new block in a blockchain platform (mostly Proof of stake).
The coin or token awarded to miners or a group of miners for solving mathematical problems required to create a new block on a given blockchain.
Used to represent the number of blocks that precede a given block in a blockchain. It denotes the position of the given block.
The total amount of transactional data that can be stored in a given block.
The total time taken for a blockchain system to produce or mine a new block.
A standard that renders heterogeneous blockchains interoperable and enables them to operate as a fully decentralised settlement layer by securely anchoring transactions using a protocol that is universal.
A unit of a particular cryptocurrency.
Offline wallets for securely storing cryptocurrencies.
Cryptocurrency refers to decentralised digital currencies that facilitate value transfers on distributed ledgers without the need for intermediaries.
A field of study and practice that involves sending secure, encrypted messages between two or more parties.
Cryptocurrency wallets are digital wallets for securely storing cryptographic keys that give traders access to their cryptocurrencies.
A democratic practice used for decision-making in blockchain. It is achieved when all nodes in the network agree on the order and contents of the blocks on the blockchain.
An underlying fault-tolerant mechanism used to reach an agreement on a single state of the network among distributed nodes in a blockchain network.
CeDefi (Centralised decentralised finance) is the convergence of both the traditional and modern financial practices merging conventional regulatory safeguards in traditional systems and modern innovative financial infrastructure and products.
Cryptocurrency exchanges that require central intermediaries to conduct large volumes of transactions via the order book model.
The total number of a particular cryptocurrency in the market.
The separation of two or more permanent versions of a blockchain sharing the same history up to a certain time into several independently managed projects.
Cloud mining is a process of mining cryptocurrencies without dealing with the hassles of owning and running mining equipment. It involves renting computing power from providers to mine a proof of work cryptocurrency.
The mechanism that enables two independent blockchains to communicate with one another due to their uniform construction.
Transfer of decision-making control from a central entity (individual, groups, or association) to a distributed network.
The process of retransmitting encrypted messages back to their original format.
Decentalised finance (DeFi) is collective of financial services that are conducted via smart contracts on open blockchain networks.
An investment strategy that allows investors to split up the total amount to be invested across periodic purchases of a target asset to reduce the impact of volatility.
Internet applications that function autonomously on public blockchain networks.
A method used to confirm the authenticity of electronically transmitted data.
A potential flaw in digital cash schemes that allows spending a single digital currency more than once. For example, sending cryptocurrency to two different wallet locations at the same time.
Bitcoin is often referred to as digital gold because it has many of the same characteristics as gold.
A decentralised application programming interface that is intrinsically interoperable with blockchain networks.
A data structure that is often used for data modelling built in one single direction, yet branches out and never repeats.
A common cyber-attack tactic where a bad actor disrupts the operation of an application, server, or network by flooding it with large amounts of traffic.
Ledgers whose data is stored and synchronised across a network of decentralised nodes
DAOs are internet-based organisations that run democratically via smart contracts without the need for a central authority or any hierarchical structures.
A market chart pattern reflecting recent price weakness that occurs when the short-term moving average falls below a longer-term moving average thereby indicating a potentially big sell-off.
Programs locally installed on a desktop or laptop computer that provide users with complete control over the wallet and enable them to store their funds offline.
A fundraising methodology that introduces governance in ICO processes where contributors can vote for the return of their funds if certain conditions are met.
A peer-to-peer marketplace where users can trade crypto assets against the liquidity in smart contracts without the need for intermediaries or a central authority.
A type of proof of stake consensus mechanism where users stake their coins to empower a selected group of validators to validate blocks in a cryptocurrency network.
A popular term used for people with high-risk tolerance for high volatility stocks or assets that they own and plan to hold for the long-term.
Anything of value that is uniquely identifiable and stored digitally.
A currency that exists only in digital form.
A popular acronym that stands for “Do Your Own Research.” It encourages investors to do extensive research and background check on a project before investing.
Ethereum is a decentralised permissionless blockchain platform with smart contracts functionality.
The native coin and payment method for operating the Ethereum blockchain.
specific period of time used to specify when specific events in a blockchain network will occur.
The process through which information is converted into cryptographic codes (ciphertext).
A digital token standard interface that seeks to create a smart contract that can represent and control any number of fungible and non-fungible token types on Ethereum Blockchain.
A digital token standard used to issue and implement fungible tokens on the Ethereum blockchain
An iteration of the ERC-20 standard that enables users to securely transfer tokens to a digital wallet on the Ethereum blockchain.
An Ethereum token standard used to create non-fungible and exchangeable tokens.
A fungible token standard derived from the existing ERC-20 standard that defines a new way to interact with a token contract while staying backward compatible.
An extension of ERC-20 that allows execution of calls inside the transfer and approvals. It addresses the existing limitations of the ERC-20 standard when it comes to the implementation of these calls.
An ethereum token standard that allows for the creation of tradable ERC-20 tokens, each of which symbolises a numberless share issued by a Delaware corporation.
A standard that facilitates subscription-based transactions and connections between subscription businesses and customers.
The software that developers use to create decentralised apps on the Ethereum blockchain.
An upgrade of a blockchain’s software that has been made to improve functions, capabilities, and/or security.
Legal tender without intrinsic value (not backed by any commodity) that is issued and backed by a central bank.
Infrastructure that validates transactions and blocks by downloading a blockchain's entire history in order to observe and enforce its rules
The ability of an asset to be interchangeable with another of its kind.
A digital token on a blockchain that is linked to a government or bank-issued currency.
A popular acronym in the crypto world that translates to Fear of Missing Out.
A crypto reward system that enables users to earn small amounts of a cryptocurrency for completing easy tasks.
A popular acronym meaning Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt. It is often attached to spreading negative or misleading information about a crypto asset.
A term used on the Ethereum blockchain to denote the unit of computational effort required to validate a transaction on the network.
The convergence of cryptocurrency and games through a design that involves economic and financial benefits and users having full ownership of their in-game assets.
The first block that is processed and validated on a blockchain.
A technical trading chart pattern that indicates a price increase when a stock or cryptocurrency's short-term moving average crosses above its long-term moving average.
Tokens that enable users to vote on the future of a crypto project.
Also known as giga wei, gwei is the smallest unit of ether that denotes the cost of gas in transactions in the Ethereum blockchain.
The amount of computing power a computer or mining hardware uses to run and continuously solve the different cryptographic puzzles in proof-of-work cryptocurrencies.
An acronym that translates to "hold on for dear life," used to refer to a long-term buy-and-hold strategy among crypto investors.
A hard fork is a radical protocol change in a blockchain that splits it into two chains.
A mathematical function used in cryptography that creates a unique, fixed-length string to encrypt and secure a certain selection of data.
A function that takes a set of inputs of any arbitrary size and fits them into a fixed-size output.
The total computational power required to process a transaction in a blockchain network.
A digital currency wallet connected to the internet and accessible online to facilitate cryptocurrency transactions. It's also used for interacting with decentralised applications on open blockchain networks.
The maximum funding a team is willing to collect from investors during an ICO/IEO. It also denotes the absolute maximum supply of a particular cryptocurrency.
An offline cryptocurrency wallet that is used to store the private keys of users. Hardware wallets usually come in the form of a flash drive.
The cryptocurrency industry's equivalent of an initial public offering (IPO). An initial coin offering (ICO) can be used by a firm to acquire funding for the development of a new crypto project.
A method employed by startups to acquire funds by selling utility tokens that confer privileged status with the company on a cryptocurrency exchange or platform.
A method of launching a crypto project that requires people to contribute their skills and time to earn rewards in the new cryptocurrency.
When a blockchain project launches a coin on a decentralised exchange (DEX) to raise funds from investors.
A fundraising technique that allows new DeFi projects to raise funds by selling tokens on a yield farming protocol.
Allows individuals to invest in gaming initiatives at an early stage by purchasing the blockchain game’s token or NFTs.
A new cryptocurrency fundraising invention that involves selling a set of limited edition NFTs via a launchpad. It is based on the notion of an Initial Coin Offering (ICO).
A novel way of obtaining funds for the development of projects that uses a staking pool. This method is only currently employed in Cardano.
ITOs are comparable to initial coin offerings, but they focus more on offering tokens with utility, such as software or ecosystem usage.
Immutable X is a layer-2 scaling protocol for NFTs on the Ethereum blockchain. It offers instant trade confirmation and almost zero gas fees for minting and trading NFTs.
Temporary losses encountered by a liquidity provider due to the volatility in crypto assets held in a decentralised liquidity pool.
The capacity of a blockchain network to share and receive data from other blockchain networks.
Stands for the "joy of missing out". It is the opposite of FOMO (fear of missing out). It is a term used by people to declare their joy of not being involved with cryptocurrencies when prices are tanking or a project is revealed to be a scam.
KYC (Know Your Customer) is a verification required on most crypto exchanges to verify the identity of their users.
Laser eyes is a viral Twitter meme used by Bitcoiners who will show laser eyes on their profile pictures until the price of bitcoin hits $100,000.
This refers to a publicly-traded company that has a capitalisation worth $10 billion and more. In the crypto markets, it refers to the largest cryptocurrencies in the market.
A liquidity pool is a pool of cryptocurrencies or tokens that are locked in a smart contract and used to facilitate trades between assets on a decentralised exchange (DEX).
Liquidity mining is a method of earning rewards (in the form of protocol tokens) for providing liquidity to decentralised trading or lending pools.
An individual or a party that funds a liquidity pool with crypto assets to facilitate trading on a decentralised exchange platform.
Tokens issued to liquidity providers that represent their share of a liquidity pool.
The total market value of a cryptocurrency, calculated by multiplying the total number of tokens in circulation by the current price of the token.
Mining refers to the process of validating transactions in a cryptocurrency network by expending computing power to solve cryptographic equations, and in turn, earning rewards in newly minted tokens and transaction fees.
Individuals or companies that use their computing power to validate transactions in cryptocurrency networks.
A group of cryptocurrency miners who pool their computing resources together to enable them to validate transactions quicker, and in turn, share block rewards proportionally based on computing power contributed.
The amount of cryptocurrency miners get in return for successfully validating blocks of transactions in a blockchain network.
Mooning is a term used in the crypto space to refer to a crypto asset that's rising in value rapidly and sharply.
Refers to a developed independent blockchain protocol that processes transactions with real monetary value.
The max or maximum supply of a cryptocurrency refers to the maximum amount of coins that will ever be created.
A memecoin is a cryptocurrency that originated from an internet meme or a joke of some kind. An example would be Dogecoin.
A software wallet that serves as a smartphone application or web browser extension for interacting with the Ethereum blockchain.
The metaverse is an interconnected entity of digital environments comprising social media, NFTs, and virtual currency, powered by virtual and augmented reality.
Micro cap in crypto refers to digital assets with small capitalisation, usually less than $300 million. These types of cryptocurrencies show more volatility, making them riskier to trade.
The maximum profits miners can make at the expense of users by arbitrarily including, excluding, or reordering transactions within the blocks they generate.
The process of generating new tokens on a blockchain network without reliance on centralised intermediaries. These tokens can be coins or NFTs.
Smartphone applications for securely storing keys that give traders access to observe, send and receive the coins they own.
Cryptocurrency wallets that are capable of supporting more than one crypto asset.
Cryptocurrency wallets that require two or more private keys to sign a transaction before they are successful. These types of wallets allow a group of users to collectively own crypto assets.
Nodes are basic blockchain infrastructures that store data within the blockchain network.
An arbitrary number used by a miner in mining cryptocurrencies.
NFTs are digital tokens on a blockchain that are not interchangeable.
Transactions that are processed outside the main blockchain network, increasing speed and reducing cost in the process.
Cryptocurrency storage options that are not connected to the internet.
Transactions that are recorded on the blockchain and distributed among all nodes.
Cryptocurrency storage options connected to the internet.
Third-party services that provide smart contracts with information from the outside world.
A method of trading cryptocurrencies directly between two parties via a broker-dealer network.
An electronic list of buy and sell orders of a particular asset on a cryptocurrency exchange.
A decentralised communication network between two parties often known as nodes without a central server/ intermediary.
Proof of stake is a consensus mechanism that involves the use of coins to validate transactions in a cryptocurrency network.
Proof of work is a consensus mechanism employed in crypto networks that involves expending computing power to solve cryptographic puzzles to validate transactions.
Public keys are strings of alphanumeric characters used for receiving crypto funds.
Private keys are strings of alphanumeric characters that traders can use to access and manage their crypto funds.
A manipulative scheme employed by scammers to push the price of a cryptocurrency after which they sell at a profit and abandon the coin, causing its price to crash.
A piece of paper that has private/public keys printed on them.
Specific blockchains that run in parallel within the Polkadot network.
A peg is a specified price a cryptocurrency aims to track or stay at.
Pegged currencies are cryptocurrencies that maintain a price peg to traditional assets.
Play to earn is a gaming model that allows users to earn cryptocurrencies or NFTs that can be sold in the crypto market.
An energy-efficient consensus mechanism that relies on the identities of validators as a stake instead of coins or computing power.
Proof of burn is the process of burning tokens in a cryptocurrency network by sending them to an address where they can never be accessed in exchange for the rights to validate blocks in a cryptocurrency network.
Proof-of-developer is any verification that shows evidence of a real developer behind a crypto project with a delivery working model to prevent an anonymous figure from making away with any raised funds.
Proof of history is a type of consensus mechanism that uses a series of computations (or verifiable delay functions) to cryptographically verify the passage of time between two events in a blockchain network.
Proof of Immutability is a type of blockchain system (usually in permissioned blockchains) that upholds high privacy by distributing hashes of the metadata to users as opposed to the metadata itself.
Proof of validation is a type of proof of stake consensus mechanism of reaching consensus via staked validator nodes.
A unique string of cryptographic codes that are used to receive cryptocurrencies.
Decentralised blockchains that allow anyone to access information within their ledger.
A list of words in a particular order storing the necessary information needed to recover a cryptocurrency wallet.
The plan outlining the long and short-term goals of a crypto project and how they will be achieved within a flexible timeline.
ROI (Return on Investment) is a metric used by crypto investors to calculate the profitability of a trade or investment.
Rug pulls occur when the founding team/developers behind a crypto project withdraws all its liquidity and abandons the project.
The anonymous figure or entity responsible for creating Bitcoin, the first cryptocurrency.
Satoshi is a term used to refer to the smallest unit of bitcoin.
Smart contracts are self-executing programmes on a blockchain that acts based on predetermined agreements.
Stablecoins are cryptocurrencies that attempt to maintain a price peg 1:1 to a traditional asset or fiat currency like the US dollar, for example.
Security tokens offerings are a type of public offering where tokenised securities are publicly sold on cryptocurrency or security token exchanges.
A shielded address is an address that uses zero-knowledge proofs to allow transactions to be encrypted but still verifiable in a blockchain network.
A shielded transaction is a transaction between two shielded addresses.
Scamcoins are cryptocurrencies that are created to benefit their creators by illegally stealing the funds of those who invested in the coin.
Digital tokens on a blockchain that represents ownership of a share of traditional securities or assets.
A list of cryptographically generated words that gives traders access to the cryptocurrency associated with a wallet.
SHA-256 (Secure hash algorithm 256 is a cryptographic hash function that gives a 256-bit output. It's the hashing and mining algorithm of the Bitcoin network.
A shard is a sub-blockchain for scaling the main chain.
Shard chains are smaller pieces of a blockchain network that provides extra and cheaper storage layers for applications and transactions.
Sharding is a way of partitioning a blockchain network into smaller pieces known as shards to boost its scalability.
Shilling is the process of overly promoting a cryptocurrency with the aim of creating buzz and pumping the price of the coin.
A side chain is a separate blockchain that connects to a parent blockchain or main net through a two-way peg.
Smart tokens are tokens that transmit both the value they contain and codes containing the information needed to execute a transaction simultaneously.
Soft cap refers to the minimum viable funding amount a crypto project needs to reach through an ICO/IEO.
A soft fork is a backward-compatible way for upgrading or adding features to a blockchain network.
Software wallets are digital wallets that give traders access and control over their cryptocurrencies.
Soulbound tokens (SBTs) are non-transferable, publicly-verifiable digital tokens that can act as a type of CV for web3 users, showing an individual’s memberships, credentials, and affiliations.
In the spot market, traders buy and sell cryptocurrencies at spot prices for immediate settlements.
Spot trading refers to the exchanging of cryptocurrencies at a spot price for instant settlements.
Staking is a process of locking funds in a cryptocurrency network to keep it secure and earn rewards in return.
Staking pools involve multiple users combining resources (coins) to increase their chances of validating transactions and earning rewards.
Tokens are digital units representing value on a blockchain.
Tokenomics refers to the economics of a crypto network’s token.
Terahash per second is the equivalent of one trillion (1,000,000,000,000) hashes per second. It is a measurement unit for the computing power generated by a mining machine.
Testnets are alternative blockchain networks used by developers for testing new features without worrying about disrupting the main blockchain.
Token sale refers to the initial sale of a crypto token to a pool of investors in exchange for another crypto asset before it goes live in the market.
Total value locked refers to the overall value of the total asset deposited in a decentralised protocol.
Total supply is the total number of coins that currently exist minus the total coins that were verifiably burned.
Trading volume refers to the number of units of a crypto asset exchanged within a specific timeframe.
A transaction is the act of exchanging crypto assets in a cryptocurrency network.
Transaction per second refers to the maximum number of transactions a cryptocurrency network can process in a second.
2FA is an extra layer of security on platforms beyond usernames and passwords that requires two different types of authentication.
A timestamp is a small data identification indicating when a block/transaction was mined in a blockchain network.
A term for people who do not use banks or banking institutions, typically due to a lack of access.
Unspent transaction output refers to a transaction output that can be used as an input for a new cryptocurrency transaction.
Tokens that serve a specific use case within a specific crypto ecosystem.
Vitalik Buterin is a Russian-born Canadian writer and programmer responsible for co-founding Ethereum and Bitcoin Magazine.
Validators are nodes that verify blocks of transactions in a cryptocurrency network.
Whales are individuals or entities that hold a large amount of a particular cryptocurrency.
A document released by a crypto project that explains its purpose, technical concepts, and details a roadmap.
A term used to describe investors who lack the conviction or resources to hold their positions or stick with their trading strategies.
Web 1.0 also referred to as the Static web, is the first generation of the web and it was used specifically for communication purposes.
Web 2.0, also referred to as the social web, is the second iteration of the web that enabled interactive platforms where users can generate and share content.
Web 3.0 is the third iteration of the world wide web where applications and websites process information via emerging technologies like blockchain, big data, the internet of things, machine learning, etc.
Web3 Foundation was co-founded by Gavin Wood to nurture and steward technologies and applications in the fields of decentralised web software protocols.
Whitelist in the world of crypto refers to a list of participants or addresses allowed to partake in an ICO or withdrawal.
Yield farming is the process of lending or staking crypto assets to earn rewards and interest/fees paid in cryptocurrency.
YTD (Year to Date) is a metric that shows the performance of a crypto asset from the beginning of the year to its current price.
Zk-SNARK (Zero-Knowledge Succinct Non-Interactive Argument of Knowledge) is a type of zero-knowledge proof that requires an initial trust system.
A type of zero-knowledge proof that doesn't require a trusted phase. Instead, it uses publicly verifiable proof of randomness, enhancing privacy, scalability, and security.
Zero-knowledge proofs are a way of cryptographically proving the authenticity of an information/transaction without revealing the details of the said information/transaction.
The information is not to be construed as a recommendation; or an offer to buy or sell; or the solicitation of an offer to buy or sell any security, financial product, or instrument; or to participate in any trading strategy. Readers should seek their own advice. Reproduction or redistribution of this information is not permitted.
Cryptocurrencies (such as Bitcoin) are extremely volatile and can move or jump in price with no apparent reason due to lack of liquidity and ad hoc news. There is little or no fundamental reasoning behind its pricing and as such trading CFDs in cryptocurrencies poses a significant risk to clients. For any Cryptocurrency CFDs that we limit to Monday – Friday trading, it is important to note that the underlying market will continue to trade over the weekend, meaning there could be a significant price change between Close of Business on Friday and open for business on Monday. Therefore, these symbols should be traded by clients with sufficient experience to understand that, subject to negative balance protection (where available), they risk losing all their investment, or more, in a short period of time, and only a very small part of their portfolio should be allocated.