Cryptocurrency is a digital asset designed to function as a medium of exchange in which individual coin ownership records are stored in a ledger in the form of a computerized database using strong cryptography to secure transaction records, control the creation of additional coins, and verify coin ownership transfer.
It is not typically issued by a central authority and does not exist in physical form (like paper money). In contrast to centralized digital currency and central banking systems, cryptocurrency typically employs decentralized control.
When a cryptocurrency is minted or created prior to issuance or issued by a single issuer, it is considered centralized. When implemented with decentralized control, however, each cryptocurrency operates via a distributed ledger technology, typically a blockchain, which serves as a public financial transaction database.