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Dash is a digital currency that enables anyone, anywhere in the world to make quick, easy and cheap payments at any time without going through a central authority. Based on a decentralized peer-to-peer network, and secured by strong cryptography, Dash offers a safe and user-friendly payment method without barriers. Dash is portable, inexpensive, divisible and fast digital cash for both the internet and everyday life.
Based on the Bitcoin project, Dash was launched on January 18, 2014 by founder Evan Duffield. The first few years of development saw Dash develop a focus on speed and fungibility, making it an excellent and practical alternative to cash, both online and at the point of sale in shops and restaurants.
Due to its low fees and fast transactions, Dash is used around the world as a practical alternative to cash and credit cards. It is also a useful solution in the international remittances market. It is particularly popular in regions where technical access barriers exist to traditional payment systems, or where hyperinflation has made existing currency impractical to use.
Much like email, Dash is an open protocol not under the control of any single entity. Anyone can write software to transact on the Dash network without requiring the permission of a central authority. Other than the minimal fees required to prevent spam attacks, there are no barriers to using Dash.
Like any currency, Dash has value because people find it useful, and as a result are willing to spend it or receive it in return for goods and services.
A blockchain is a public ledger of all transactions ever processed using Dash. Each transaction is verified with a unique signature that can only be created by the true sender, which also serves to ensure that it is not possible to fraudulently spend the same balance twice. Transactions are written to blocks, which are produced and secured every 2.5 minutes by advanced cryptographic algorithms in a process known as mining.
Masternodes were invented as a unique feature of the Dash network, and form a second layer used to ensure the blockchain is readily available to all network participants. Masternodes also perform a number of other functions related to the health and efficiency of the network, such as governance, securely storing user data, processing transactions for light wallets and facilitating instant and private transactions.
Dash was the first digital currency to offer secure instant transactions based on the masternode network. Unlike conventional blockchains, where it is necessary to wait for transaction confirmation in a block, Dash leverages the network of masternodes to validate that the funds specified in the transaction have not already been spent, and then locks them within 1-2 seconds so they cannot be spent again until the transaction is complete. Any transactions attempting to use the same funds will be rejected by the network, even in the case of a 51% attack.
A mnemonic seed is a set of 12 or 24 words that represents a specific sequence of cryptographic keys which control your Dash balance. Since spending Dash involves signing creating transactions, losing or giving your seed to someone else is the same as losing or giving away your Dash. However, since the seed is only used when creating or restoring a wallet, it can be used to restore access to your Dash if your phone or laptop is stolen. This is an important advantage over the traditional cash in your wallet, for example, which is permanently lost if stolen.
There are several options to buy or sell Dash.
You can spend Dash at nearly 155,000 partners and merchants. To find them all in North America, use the DashDirect app. For other countries, explore the full list of apps allowing you to spend Dash for particular services.
There are two ways to stake Dash. The firstis by becoming a masternode owner and locking up 1000 Dash, and the second one is by using a special staking service. You can stake Dash at many exchanges and wallets supporting Dash.
Staking is also possible by running a fractional masternode with other participants through Crowdnode.io.