1. What is the blockchain?
The blockchain is a type of public distributed ledger that relies on a decentralised network of computers to authenticate transfers of the bitcoin cryptocurrency.
However, banks are finding other uses for the technology to help validate other types of transactions in a faster and more cost-efficient manner. For example, it could be used to process trades and bonds or property transfers, as well as supporting modernised payments networks that are not anonymous like bitcoin.
And more generally as a system of authentication it could be used for anything from smart contracts to use cases such as verifying online voting, and has even been used to validate a wedding.