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What Is Cryptocurrency Mining?

By Jacinta Sherris
What is cryptocurrency mining

Cryptocurrency mining refers to a method of earning cryptocurrencies as a reward for solving complex mathematical and computational problems. It’s possible to earn Bitcoin, Ethereum, Dogecoin, and other types of cryptocurrency via mining. 

Cryptocurrency mining allows you to essentially earn coins for free, albeit there is a catch. Cryptocurrency mining can be difficult to break down. If you have found yourself wondering, “What is cryptocurrency mining?”you’re not alone. 

We’re going over everything you need to know about cryptocurrency mining below! 

How does cryptocurrency mining work?

In order to understand how cryptocurrency mining works, it’s important to first go over the basics of blockchain. Blockchain is a type of technology that serves as a digital ledger, meaning it stores and tracks digital data.

Blockchain stores encrypted information in blocks, and from there, the information is interconnected on a single, chronological digital chain. Data stored within blockchains is typically public, and it’s almost always impossible to change, alter, or hack. 

Most cryptocurrencies are built on blockchain networks. The process of cryptocurrency mining is how data within the blockchain is secured and verified. It’s essentially auditing. 

Mining helps maintain the integrity and accuracy of blockchain ledgers. Cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Litecoin rely on mining to verify their blockchain ledgers. 

The mining process entails solving incredibly complex computational math problems that are too difficult to be solved by hand. Instead, they require powerful computers. As a reward for their work, miners will often receive cryptocurrency in exchange for mining.  

Does this sound confusing? Cryptocurrency mining isn’t supposed to be simple to understand, so don’t worry if you’re still lost. It helps to break it down. We’ve compiled answers to the most common questions about crypto mining below. Take a look! 

Is crypto mining dangerous?

Crypto mining isn’t dangerous in and of itself, but there are many consequences of mining. Most significantly, the mining of cryptocurrencies, especially Bitcoin, requires enormous amounts of energy. Energy bills can reach staggering heights. 

Plus, mining crypto requires specialized computer hardware, which will also increase your expenses. If you don’t take these costs into consideration, you may find that you’ve actually lost money from mining crypto instead of increasing your profits. 

What is the best way to mine cryptocurrency?

In order to effectively mine cryptocurrency, specialized computer hardware is required. Most times, this means you’ll need either a graphics processing unit (GPU) or an application-specific integrated circuit (ASIC). 

Is crypto mining profitable?

There’s no guarantee that mining crypto will be profitable. The costs associated with the related electricity bills and specialized equipment can eat away at any profits you generate from crypto mining. Plus, the value of many cryptocurrencies is subject to volatility, so it can be difficult to estimate your potential for return altogether. 

Can you mine cryptocurrency at home?

Technically, you can mine cryptocurrency at home, but it may not always be worthwhile to do so. That’s because mining for popular cryptocurrencies, like Bitcoin or Ethereum, has become more difficult over time. 

Mining crypto takes longer and requires more energy consumption than an at-home home computer can handle, meaning your computer will likely not be equipped for the situation. Still, you might be able to turn a profit by mining cheaper cryptos from home. 

Does mining use a lot of data?

Crypto mining doesn’t use a lot of data. Depending on the cryptocurrency, it may be possible to mine for two months with the same data required to stream a high-quality movie. 

That said, crypto mining does require a ton of processing power. In fact, some countries have banned crypto mining because of the unsustainable levels of energy that it uses. 

Important cryptocurrency mining factors

Thinking about getting started with cryptocurrency mining? There are a couple of factors to consider before you do anything. 

There’s no guarantee you’ll make money 

On paper, it sounds great. Buy some hardware, have your computer solve complex computational problems, and earn cryptocurrencies. Plus, the skyrocketing value of Bitcoin is also enticing miners like never before. 

But there’s more than meets the eye. Mining comes with its own set of expenses, including the cost of electricity consumption and advanced computer hardware. There’s no guarantee you’ll make money by crypto mining, either. 

You need advanced crypto mining software 

It may be possible to mine cryptos on your personal laptop, but oftentimes, it isn’t worthwhile. Instead, you’ll have to purchase advanced crypto mining software like a graphics processing unit (GPU) or an application-specific integrated circuit (ASIC). 

It helps to join a mining pool

Crypto mining is difficult to accomplish effectively on your own, and it’s getting harder by the day. As a result, many users opt for a mining pool. This is where a group of miners combine their computing power and split the cryptocurrencies that they earn. Most of the cryptocurrency mining is actually done by pools rather than individuals. 

There are other ways to earn crypto rewards

Crypto mining isn’t the only way to earn cryptocurrency for free. Some crypto trading platforms offer rewards programs for cryptocurrencies. 

In fact, MoneyLion is in the midst of launching its very own crypto rewards program, called Round Up, where users will be able to buy, sell, and earn Bitcoin and Ethereum. You can reserve your spot for MoneyLion Crypto here

Advantages of cryptocurrency mining 

There are many reasons why people opt for cryptocurrency mining. Let’s take a look at some of the advantages of cryptocurrency mining. 

  • The most popular reason people mine cryptocurrency is to earn coins. Cryptocurrency coins can be exchanged for cash or held onto in the hopes of value appreciation. 
  • Crypto mining makes the cryptocurrency that is being mined more secure, as well as its blockchain. That’s because the more miners there are, the more audits or verifications are being performed on the data stored within the blockchain. 

Disadvantages of cryptocurrency mining 

Cryptocurrency mining also comes with its own set of drawbacks. Take a look at the potential pitfalls. 

  • There’s no guarantee you’ll generate a profit from cryptocurrency mining, especially considering the costs of buying equipment and paying the energy bills.
  • Crypto mining requires enormous amounts of energy. Not only is this environmentally unsustainable, but it will also reflect heavily on your electricity bills. 
  • Crypto mining isn’t easy, but it is incredibly time and energy consuming. This is why most cryptocurrencies are mined from mining pools and not individuals. 

Cryptocurrency vs stocks 

Cryptocurrencies can serve as a financial investment, but does that mean you should choose them over stocks? Not necessarily.

Investing in cryptocurrency is risky. Stocks can also be risky. However, some blue-chip companies are known to show stability in times of crisis. The S&P 500 has also had average annual returns of about 10%

There isn’t enough data to assess cryptocurrency returns over the long run, but some investors have made considerable returns in the short term. Both stocks and cryptocurrencies can offer potential for returns. However, the latter is riskier. 

Ultimately, it comes down to diversification. Some investors may choose to incorporate both stocks and cryptocurrencies into their portfolios. If you’re looking to start buying or selling cryptos, make sure you check out MoneyLion Crypto. It’s a place where you can trade crypto and even earn Bitcoin or Ethereum rewards. 

And if you’re keen on investing in stocks, MoneyLion is your go-to as well. MoneyLion offers fully-managed investment portfolios that can be customized to your unique investing needs. There’s no minimum or management fees. All you’ll pay is a flat rate of $1 per month! 

There are other ways to earn crypto besides mining 

Although cryptocurrency mining has its benefits, it can be difficult and environmentally unsustainable. The good news is that there are other ways to earn cryptocurrencies aside from mining. Reserve your spot for MoneyLion Crypto today! You could start earning Bitcoin and Ethereum in return for your everyday spending. Learn more here.

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