Cryptocurrency is a digital or virtual currency that uses cryptography for security and operates independently of a central bank or government. It is based on blockchain technology, which is a decentralized and distributed ledger that records transactions across a network of computers. Cryptocurrencies use complex algorithms to regulate the creation of new units and to verify the transfer of funds. Bitcoin was the first cryptocurrency to be created in 2009, and since then, thousands of other cryptocurrencies have been developed. Some popular examples include Ethereum, Ripple, and Litecoin. Cryptocurrencies can be used to buy goods and services or traded for other currencies, including traditional fiat currencies like the US dollar.