What is a cryptocurrency transaction hash/hash ID?
A transaction hash or ID is a string of unique characters that are provided, to every verified transaction added on the blockchain. In most cases, it is required to locate funds on the network. The transaction hash is the ‘title’ of the transaction. To obtain the transaction hash, click on the top of the transaction (blockchain explorer) or the URL.
The cryptocurrency transaction hash can be called different names, but the display is usually the same. TX ID, ID, Hash, Crypto Hash, Transaction ID – all of these mean the same thing. The hash is a string of numbers and letters that uniquely identify the transaction in the blockchain.
You can find hashes in your transaction history on your wallet or exchange.
In the context of blockchain and cryptocurrencies, a hash function takes a piece of data as an input and returns a fixed length alphanumeric string as the output.
For example, if you input the string “hello” into SHA-256, you would get the following 256-bit output:
The hash function used by Bitcoin is SHA-256. A double round of SHA-256 is used to produce a Bitcoin address from a public key.
Apart from the transaction hash, each transaction also has an internal id such as:
However, this specific type of ID only defines the transaction on the website, it does not help in locating the transaction on the blockchain.
How does a hash work?
A cryptographic hash function takes a piece of data as input and returns a seemingly random, fixed-size string of letters and numbers (the hash). The same piece of data always results in the same hash, but changing just one character will drastically change the resulting hash. The same data can also produce different hashes depending on which algorithm is being used.
Use of transaction hash/hash ID
On the blockchain, the transactions are publicly available for everyone to access. Once an individual makes a payment or transfers coins to another address, the transaction is transmitted and transaction hash/ID is generated. With this ID you can easily track and trace the status of your transaction. The users of the blockchain will get to know the details of the transaction such as receiver address, sender address, amount of the transaction, fees paid, block height, and the number of confirmations.
The transfer ID and transaction hash do not contain any personal information, so you can safely share them with a merchant or recipient of the transaction. But what are they useful for?
Here are three ways to use cryptocurrency transaction hash:
Using online services like Blockchain Explorer, you can enter your transaction hash and get information about the transfer details, including the sender and receiver, time transferred, and number of confirmations the transfer has received. You can also see where the money currently resides in your account or if it has been spent already. This makes it easier to track the status of your money transfer.
When sending funds from one wallet address to another, you can distribute your transaction hash to confirm receipt of payment from one location to another within a short period of time.
Storing information on the blockchain
It is immutable and resistant to change, which is one of the most important benefits of using a blockchain. The information stored can be anything you want: proof of ownership, time-stamped records, contracts, or any other information you want to store securely.
Why do you need a transaction ID?
In the case of Bitcoin, if the withdrawal is pending without a transaction hash, this ID will be the only component to identify the withdrawal when submitted a request to the support team.
Blockchain explorers may vary depending on the cryptocurrency you’re using. For our readers we have listed down a few options of blockchain of different networks:
- BTC: https://www.blockchain.com/
- ETH: https://etherscan.io/
- LTC: https://live.blockcypher.com/ (set to LTC, not BTC)
- XRP: https://xrpscan.com/
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