09-30-2019 icon

Crypto 101: Five (5) Tips to Keep Your Bitcoin and Other Coins Safe

By Sagetwriter

Just like regular cash, bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies require a level of self security. As a crypto investor, you do not want to overlook your wallet security and watch all your coins disappear because you were careless.

 In this article, we highlight measures to ensure the safety of your coins against losses and hacks.

  • Use Only Trusted Wallet

While there are lots of companies offering crypto custodian services/ wallet services, the bitcoiner is advised to stick to renowned wallet providers with reputable ratings.

Companies such as Blockchain.com offer a very reliable wallet with storage for about 5 coins including BTC, ETH, BCH, PAX and XLM. If you hold any extra coins asides these, you will need a multicurrency wallet such as Exodus or Electrum wallet which allows you store over 30 other cryptocurrencies in one wallet.

For extra wallet security, a hardware wallet is advised. Hardware wallets look like your flash drive/usb device; they allow you store Bitcoin and other coins. Best choices for hardware wallets include Ledger and Trezor hardware wallets.

Hardware wallets are safer cause you hold them physically and they are offline-based wallets which are less susceptible to hacks. They also give you total control of your wallet keys.

  • Do Company Research

Most times sticking with reputable names does the trick. Registered crypto companies with some form of insurance, and verifiable reviews over the years should always be first choice.

While new companies are encouraged, always Do Your Own Research (DYOR) before using any wallet service provider.

  • Enable 2-Factor Authentication (2FA)

Bitcoin wallet Two-Factor Authentication acts as extra security for your bitcoin or cryptocurrency. This makes it more difficult for hackers or thieves to access your wallet.

While your Wallet ID and Password is considered as single-factor authentication, adding e-mail or phone number verification offers a second layer of security. So for every login attempt a verification mail or code is sent.

You could also use an Authenticator App such as the Google Authenticator or Authy App. Both are available on the play store but could require expert handling before use.

  • Do Not Hold Your Bitcoins On An Exchange

This is a general crypto rule. You are advised to hold very little of your coin balances on trading platforms or exchanges; when we say exchanges we refer to platforms such as Binance, Bitterex, Kucoin etc which allow trade BTC against other cryptocurrencies as well as convert BTC to buy other coins.

This is a safety measure as these exchanges are targets of hackers and only a few such as Binance offer insurance in the loss of funds.

  • Know Your Private Keys

This is another important measure. For most online wallets, your private keys are 12 random words which are unique to each wallet. These 12-phrases will help you in cases where you forget your wallet password or when you cannot gain access to your coins. So once entered, they will unlock your wallet and grant you access to your coins.

Extra Tips: Use only Strong passwords. Blockchain  shows you your password strength as you type.

Keep passwords safe and Never share with anyone.

Avoid clicking or signing up to spam crypto mails. Also keep your e-mail private.

Save and Never Share your 12-Words Bitcoin Backup Phrase (recovery seed).

Update your wallets regularly to keep up with developers security updates.

Also see our article on How to Avoid Bitcoin and Cryptocurrency Scams here.

Got more tips? Share in the comments.