Bitcoins are digital coins you can send through the Internet.
The concept is simple: bitcoin is a way of sending money electronically in an instant at low cost. It eliminates the need to funnel money through third parties such as banks or card payment processors. And it is not regulated by a central bank.
People can either buy coins through a locally denominated online exchange or "mine" them by using
Mt.Gox, the leading Bitcoin exchange,
Market Capitalizations of Various Cyber Coin Companies
cryptocurrencies (and there are several dozen of them)
According to coinmarketcap.com, which monitors cryptocurrencies, Litecoin, a similar but more easily created currency, has risen 60 percent in the last 24 hours alone, bringing its market capitalization to $644 million. Another currency called PeerCoin is up 30 percent since Tuesday, now worth more than $75 million.