Digital currencies, such as Bitcoin, are making headlines and some people are making small fortunes. This high-tech form of transactions is hard to fully understand, so what do you need to know as a consumer?

Bitcoin is just one type of this currency, called cryptocurrencies, because it’s extraordinarily difficult to trace. That kind of security is partly why it’s become so popular but financial professionals say proceed with caution.

Consider your dollar bill: the paper isn’t worth much, right? It’s worth one U.S. dollar because we all say it does. We use these debit cards as often, if not more often, than cash in today’s world and that transaction is all digital. Cryptocurrencies are kind of like that: all virtual transactions, but that’s where the similarities stop.