A Bitcoin address is used to designate the destination of a Bitcoin payment. It can be compared to bank credentials.
What is a Bitcoin address?
A Bitcoin address, or BTC address, is used to designate the destination of a Bitcoin payment. In this sense, a Bitcoin address can be considered the equivalent of a bank account number. All Bitcoin addresses begin with 1 or 3. Each Bitcoin address contains a string of between 26 and 35 alphanumeric characters, which can also be presented as a QR code. Based on asymmetric cryptography, a Bitcoin wallet generates and stores public/private key pairs. These keys will be used to carry out transactions, secure them, and ensure their integrity. The private key is used to prove to all network peers that one is the bitcoins owner linked to a given transaction. If you are the owner of Bitcoins, you must ensure that your private key is well protected because your private key’s theft is often synonymous with the theft of Bitcoins.
Example of a Bitcoin address
This is what the very first address that received bitcoins looked like 1A1zP1eP5QGefi2DMPTfTL5SLmv7DivfNa. The bitcoin address is a digest of the public key called “hash”. It is obtained using cryptographic algorithms (SHA 256 and RIPEMD-160). The private key is the equivalent of the wallet holder’s signature. To receive bitcoins, only the public key is required. But to spend them, the private key is indispensable. A bitcoin address is randomly generated using dedicated software.