Crypto Terms To Know
Most Important Terms to Understand in Crypto

Understanding the world of cryptocurrencies can be difficult mainly due to a specialized vocabulary whose words are rarely defined. The result is a misunderstanding that makes this difficult subject even more difficult to grasp. Here you can learn about some of the most commonly used terms in the cryptocurrency and blockchain industry today.

Common crypto terms to know if you want to navigate safely in the rough crypto ocean.

If you are a cryptocurrency newbie, here are put together the most common crypto terms to know - if you want to navigate safely in the rough crypto ocean.

Altcoin - Any cryptocurrency other than Bitcoin.
API - API stands for Application Programming Interface. It is a set of routines, protocols, and tools for building software applications.
ASIC – An acronym for application-specific integrated circuit — a device designed for the sole purpose of mining cryptocurrencies.
Accredited Investors – An accredited investor is a person or organization that is qualified to participate in financial opportunities that are not legally offered to regular investors.
Arbitrage – Arbitrage is the practice of quickly buying and selling the same asset in different markets to take advantage of price differences between the markets.
Bear – Someone who believes that prices in a given market will decline over an extended period. Such a person might be referred to as “bearish.”
Bitcoin – The original, largest and best-known cryptocurrency. Definitely Bitcoin is one of the crypto terms to know.
Blockchain – A digital form of record keeping, and the underlying technology behind cryptocurrencies. A blockchain is the result of sequential blocks that build upon one another, creating a permanent and unchangeable ledger of transactions (or other data).
Bull – A person that is optimistic and confident that market prices will increase, this person is also known to be "bullish" about the market or price.
Bitcoin – The original, largest and best-known cryptocurrency.Bitcoin – The original, largest and best-known cryptocurrency.
Casascius Coin – A physical unit of Bitcoin that comes in the form of brass, silver or gold-plated coins.
Centralized Exchange – Centralized exchanges (CEXs) are a type of cryptocurrency exchange that is operated by a company that owns it in a centralized manner.
Change Address – In cryptocurrencies, a change address is where the change from a transaction is temporarily stored before it is returned to the sender wallet.
Coin – A colloquial term for a cryptocurrency. See also: altcoin, memecoin.
Coinbase – In mineable cryptocurrencies, a coinbase is the number of coins that are generated from scratch and awarded to miners for mining every new block.
Cold Wallet – A secure method of storing your cryptocurrency completely offline. Many cold wallets (also called hardware wallets) are physical devices that look similar to a USB drive. This kind of wallet can help protect your crypto from hacking and theft, though it also comes with its own risks – like losing it, along with your crypto. Recently added to our Crypto Terms To Know glossary.
Collateral – Collateral is any asset that a lender accepts as a form of security to ensure that the borrower repays a loan.
Consensus – Consensus refers to the method by which blockchain participants agree on what should be included into the blockchain. The two most prominent consensus mechanisms currently used by crypto networks today are proof-of-work and proof-of-stake.
Consolidation – When a crypto asset trades between two levels and the market shows indecisiveness about the next move.
Correction – A correction is a pullback of an asset’s price of at least 10% to adjust for over-valuation.
CRUCRU, one of the crypto terms to know and remember, is a collateral token offered by the Cryptounit blockchain.
Cryptocurrency – A digital form of currency that can be traded for goods, services or other currencies. Transactions are verified and recorded using cryptography by ordinary people, rather than a centralised authority such as a bank.
Cryptography – A computer method of keeping information secret and secure by scrambling it into indecipherable information.
DApps (Decentralized Applications) – Applications designed by developers and deployed on a blockchain to carry out actions without intermediaries.
Dead Coin – A cryptocurrency that is no longer in existence.
Decentralized – A word that is used to describe technologies that make use of distributed systems with the aim to provide increased security and redundancy, and to lessen a reliance on governing bodies and centralized intermediaries.
DeFi (Decentralized Finance) – A movement encouraging alternatives to traditional, centralized forms of financial services.
Digital Asset – A digital representation of something of value.
Digital Currency – A currency that exists only in digital form, as opposed to traditional physical currencies (FIAT).
Digital Currency
Encryption – The process of making digital information into a form that prevents un-authorised access.
ERC-20 – Used on the Ethereum network, ERC-20 is the most vastly used crypto-token standard. It allows developers to easily create digital currencies.
Ethereum – The second biggest cryptocurrency by market capitalisation, after Bitcoin. It is a crypto network and software platform that developers can use to create new applications, and has an associated currency called ether.
Exchange – Business that allows customers to trade cryptocurrencies for fiat money or other cryptocurrencies.
Fiat – Traditional, state-backed currencies like Sterling, Euro and US dollar. It can take the form of physical cash, or it can be represented electronically, such as with bank credit.
Fish – Someone who has a small crypto investment.
FOMO – An acronym that stands for "Fear of Missing Out". In crypto markets, it usually refers to watching the tokens you do not own go through explosive upward price movements.
Fork – Forks, or chain splits, create an alternate version of the blockchain, leaving two blockchains to run simultaneously.
FUD – An acronym for "Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt" and refers usually to information that is likely to push people toward a pessimistic view of the market.
Gas – Gas is a fee that developers have to pay to the Ethereum network in order to use the system. Gas is paid in ether, the native cryptocurrency of Ethereum.
Genesis Block – The first block of data that is processed and validated to form a new blockchain, often referred to as block 0 or block 1.
Gold-Backed Cryptocurrency – A token issued that represents a value of gold; for example, one physical gram of gold equals one coin.
Gwei – The denomination used in defining the cost of gas in transactions involving Ether. Gwei is a small unit of the Ethereum network’s Ether (ETH) cryptocurrency. A gwei or gigawei is defined as 1,000,000,000 wei, the smallest base unit of Ether. One gwei equals 0.000000001 or 10-9 ETH. Conversely, 1 ETH represents 1 billion gwei!
Relief of ancient weighing goldRelief of ancient weighing gold
Halving – A feature written into Bitcoin’s code in which after a certain number of blocks are mined (typically every four years) the amount of new Bitcoin entering circulation gets halved. The halving can have an impact on Bitcoin’s price.
HODL – The term comes from misspelling the word hold. It refers to the action of not selling your cryptos. The term is now commonly expanded to stand for “Hold On for Dear Life.”
Hot Wallet – A cryptocurrency wallet that is connected to the internet for hot storage of cryptoassets, as opposed to an offline, cold wallet with cold storage.
Initial Coin Offering (ICO) – Comparable to the traditional Initial Public Offering (IPO), an ICO is a new method for projects and startups to secure funding using cryptocurrencies as a means of raising capital for early-stage companies.
Initial NFT Offering (INO) – A crypto crowdfunding solution where projects can raise funds by listing a set of NFTs via a launchpad.
Initial Public Offering (IPO) – The process of a company offering shares for purchase on the stock market for the first time.
Initial Token Offering (ITO) – ITO is similar to initial coin offerings, but have more of a focus on offering tokens with intrinsic utility in the form of software or usage in an ecosystem.
Jager – The smallest denomination of the Binance cryptocurrency (BNB).
JOMO – JOMO stands for “Joy of Missing Out.” It is often used by no-coiners who declare their happiness that they are not involved in cryptocurrencies, usually when prices are declining or a scam ICO is revealed.
Know Your Customer (KYC) – Checks that crypto exchanges and trading platforms must complete to verify the identity of their customers. Also dubbed Know Your Client, KYC is a crucial part of measures designed to prevent money laundering and terrorism financing. KYC is added it to our crypto terms to know list because you will have to deal with it every time you sign up for an exchange. Ledger – A ledger refers to transactions database. In cryptocurrencies, the ledger is the transaction history of a given cryptocurrency as stored on the blockchain.
Leveraged Tokens – In cryptocurrencies, leveraged tokens give you a leveraged position in trading, meaning that your earnings and losses are multiplied.
Limit order – An order to buy or sell an asset at a certain price or better. A buy order will be executed at a target price or higher, while a sell will only occur at a chosen or lower price.
Liquid Market – A liquid market features a large number of buyers and sellers. It is a platform where all the trades are executed with ease and at a low cost.
A liquid market features a large number of buyers and sellers.A liquid market features a large number of buyers and sellers.
Market cap (Market capitalization) – The price of an asset multiplied by circulating supply represents the total value of a given asset and its market. It is often used as a measurement of a project's success.
Memecoin – A Memecoin is a crypto token created as a joke or meme and claims to offer huge gains to holders.
MetaMask – An online digital wallet that allows users to manage, transfer and receive Ethereum, operating as an extension to a regular browser. Recently added to our Crypto Terms To Know glossary.
Metaverse – A digital universe that contains all the aspects of the real world, such as real-time interactions and economies. It offers a unique experience to end-users. It is not strictly a crypto term to know, but still related to the crypto world.
Mining – Crypto mining is the process of verifying cryptocurrency transactions using computer hardware in order to create new blocks. In exchange, miners earn rewards. It is also the process through which new bitcoin or some altcoins are created.
Mining Farm – When a group of miners mine together for a variety of advantageous reasons, like energy use.
Metaverse – A digital universe that contains all the aspects of the real world.Metaverse, a digital universe that contains all the aspects of the real world.
Node – A node is a type of participant in the blockchain network that stores data and contributes to the consensus process to ensure that all new transactions and blocks are valid.
Non-fungible token (NFT) – Non-fungible tokens are units of value used to represent the ownership of unique digital items like art or collectibles. NFTs are most often held on the Ethereum blockchain and most definitely one of the crypto terms to know.
Off-Chain – A transaction that is processed outside the blockchain network with an increased speed and reduced cost.
On-chain – A transaction that is recorded on a blockchain.
On-ledger currency – A token that is both minted by and used on a blockchain, such as Bitcoin.
P2P (Peer to peer) – A transaction between two people without an intermediary or central authority involved.
Private key – A private key is used to identify the owner of a given cryptocurrency wallet. It acts much like a password, and anyone with a private key can access the funds from the associated wallet address. Recently added to our Crypto Terms To Know glossary.
Proof of Authority (PoA) – A blockchain consensus mechanism that delivers comparatively fast transactions using identity as a stake. This is a faster alternative to the proof-of-work model, but more centralized.
Proof of Stake (PoS) – A consensus mechanism used by blockchains to ensure correct data is stored to the blockchain. In proof-of-stake blockchains, participants who deposit an amount of cryptocurrency to the network (staking) are given the opportunity to help generate new blocks and earn block rewards.
Proof of Work (PoW) – Proof of Work is a more traditional method to award miners for their effort. It requires miners to show their effort by tying a variable to the process of hashing a transaction. A hashed block proves work was completed and awards the miner. This takes up a lot of energy.
Public Blockchain – A blockchain that can be accessed by anyone.
Public key – To receive funds into your account, you have to share your public key. If a private key is like a password, a public key is like an email address or an account number.
Public Ledger – This is the place where you can view every transaction ever made on a blockchain, given that it’s public.
Quantum computing – A computer science that uses principles of quantum physics to process much larger data sets at much greater speeds than traditional, binary-based computing.
Quantum computing
Rebase – A token designed so that the circulating supply adjusts automatically according to price fluctuations.
Roadmap – A high-level visual summary that helps map out the vision as well as the direction of a specific product.
Satoshi – The smallest unit of bitcoin with a value of 0.00000001 BTC.
Satoshi Nakamoto – The anonymous creator(s) of Bitcoin.
Security Token Offering (STO) – STO is a specific type of public offering where tokenized digital securities are sold on security token exchanges. Tokens can be used to trade real financial assets, and use blockchain virtual ledger systems in order to store as well as validate the token transactions.
Seed Phrase – The seed phrase refers to a generated list of 12 to 24 words, in a specific order, used by crypto wallet users to regain access and control of their funds on the blockchain. This also means that any third party who knows your recovery seed can potentially move your funds to another wallet address. Recently added to our Crypto Terms To Know glossary.
Shitcoin – A cryptocurrency with zero value and no utility.
Smart Contract – A computer protocol that executes itself on a blockchain when certain conditions are met, without the need for human intervention or an intermediary. Once executed, the contract cannot be changed or undone.
Spot Market – A public market in which cryptocurrencies are traded for immediate settlement. It contrasts with a futures market, in which settlement is due at a later date.
Stablecoin – A cryptocurrency with extremely low volatility, sometimes used as a means of portfolio diversification. A stablecoin pegs its value to some other non-digital currency or commodity.
Stablecoin – A cryptocurrency with extremely low volatility.
Tether – A stablecoin pegged to the US Dollar.
Ticker – In essence, a ticker symbol is the short combination of letters that is used to represent a cryptocurrency token on various exchanges, swapping services and other DeFi solutions.
Token – A unit of value on a blockchain that usually has some other value proposition besides just a transfer of value (like a coin).
Tokenomics – Tokenomics, short for "token economics" describes how a token is used inside the project ecosystem or how the token will follow a monetary policy as the project grows over time. Tokenomics is one of the crypto terms to know well. It is one of those things that you will have to study well.
TRC-20 Token – The TRC-20 token standard allows for tokens to be created on the TRON network. It is similar to the ERC-20 standard used for Ethereum tokens and is intended to be fully compatible with it.
UNTBUNTB is a utility token created to work on the Cryptounit blockchain.
USDUUSDU is a stablecoin backed by the US dollar which operates on the Cryptounit blockchain.
Utility Token – Utility tokens are tokens that are designed specifically to be able to help people use something. The use of utility tokens is limited to the particular ecosystem that the utility token is designed for.
Validator – A validator is someone who pays for the chance to validate transactions and earn crypto on a proof of stake blockchain.
Vitalik Buterin – One of the programmers who created Ethereum in 2015.
Wallet – A place where cryptocurrency users can store, send and receive digital assets. Your wallet must contain seeds, keys, and addresses to function properly. Wallets can be online (hot wallet) or offline (cold wallet).
WCRUWCRU security tokens are digital shares of the Global Investment Portfolio CryptoUnit and reflect a proportionately corresponding share and the right to participate in the distribution of profits. Most definitely, WCRU is one of the crypto terms to know.
Whale – A slang term used to describe big players in the cryptocurrency markets, from institutional investors to wealthy individuals or hedge funds.
Whitepaper – A document released by a crypto project that gives investors technical information about its concept, and a roadmap for how it plans to grow and succeed. The white paper is also one of the crypto terms to know and remember to use it. You will have to study it well before investing in a startup.
Winklevoss twins, the Whales of CryptoWinklevoss twins, the Whales of Crypto
XRP – A cryptocurrency token that runs on the Ripple blockchain.

If there is a term you were looking for in our Crypto Terms To Know List and you don't see it, you can submit it here and we will add it.