Currently, most people use a trusted middleman such as a bank to make a transaction. But blockchain allows consumers and suppliers to connect directly, removing the need for a third party. Using cryptography to keep exchanges secure, blockchain provides a decentralized database, or “digital ledger”, of transactions that everyone on the network can see. This network is essentially a chain of computers that must all approve an exchange before it can be verified and recorded. In the case of Bitcoin, blockchain stores the details of every transaction of the digital currency, and the technology stops the same Bitcoin being spent more than once. The technology can work for almost every type of transaction involving value, including money, goods and property. Its potential uses are almost limitless: from collecting taxes to enabling migrants to send money back to family in countries where banking is difficult. Blockchain could also help to reduce fraud because every transaction would be recorded and distributed on a public ledger for anyone to see.