Before purchasing bitcoins, it is better to know how and where to properly store them. Usually storage for a cryptocurrency called wallets. But in fact, instead of actually storing your bitcoin, the wallet stores your private key. With this key you access a Bitcoin address, which is also called “public key”. If the development of the purse stood competent programmers, then it will look like it really got your bitcoins, – this makes the purse an intuitive and easy to use.
Wallets can be made in the form of computer programs, applications for mobile devices, keys can be stored on a physical drive and even on a sheet of paper. Let’s run through a few basic types of purses.
Install wallet directly on your computer gives you a certain level of security because you control the keys. Most of them have a relatively simple setup and free. The disadvantages are that you will have from time to time to backup (i.e., save the file wallet.dat). If your computer is stolen or it breaks, and you will not have a spare private keys, then consider that you have lost all your cryptocurrency.
In addition, you will need to apply additional security measures. If your computer is hacked, and the attacker will have access to your wallet or your private keys, he will get your bitcoins.
The first software wallet is the Bitcoin Core Protocol is a program that maintains a network of Bitcoin. You can download it here, but you will also have to download the entire blockchain of Bitcoin, since 2009. Now its size is around 252 gigabytes.
Most modern purses allow you to download the whole blockchain, but simply serve as validators of transactions. One of these wallets is called Electrum, which can be used as "cold storage." So called wallets, which for the sake of added security, store your cryptocurrency away from the Internet connection.
Exodus allows you to keep multiple assets in a well-designed user interface. There are wallets like Jaxxthat support many different digital assets. Or Copay, where you can create accounts, they can be managed by several people.
Online wallets (or cloud) offering high quality facilities. You will have the opportunity to use their bitcoins from any device, if you have a password. They are all easy to set up, offer desktop and mobile versions of the apps and most of them are free.
The disadvantage are fairly frequent security issues. In addition, your private keys will be stored at the operator cloud of the purse, which means you have to rely on its security measures. And hope that one day the service won’t disappear with the money of all users.
Sometimes, the leading online wallets reserved for cryptomeria (such as Coinbase and Blockchain). Some of them offer additional security features in the form of offline storage (this is on Coinbase and Xapo).
Mobile wallets are available as apps on smartphone. They are especially convenient when you have to pay for something with bitcoins in the store or if you want to buy, sell or send coins on the go. All online wallets and most of the above mentioned table have a mobile version. But at the same time there are those that were originally developed for mobile devices: Abra, Airbitz, and Bread.
Read on: What cryptocurrency wallet to choose? Seven best apps for a smartphone on iOS and Android.
Hardware wallets are small devices that connect to the Internet only when necessary to make a Bitcoin transaction. They are extremely safe, as most of the time are offline and therefore they are almost impossible to crack. However, they can be stolen or you may lose them along with all the bitcoins.
Some big investors keep their hardware wallets in a safe place like Bank of cells. The most popular products in this niche are the best wallet, Ledger, Keepkey, and Case.
Perhaps the easiest of all types of wallets is a paper wallet. You just type or write the private and public keys from Bitcoin addresses and hide them. They are ideal for long-term storage of bitcoins (away from fire and water, of course) or to give someone your innermost BTC. Their main feature protection, of course, is that they are not connected to the Internet and they will not be able to hack cyber-criminals and hackers. But it can eat the dog — and this too must be considered. Yet they can easily be lost.
With the help of such services as WalletGenerator will be easy to create new addresses and print paper wallets on the printer. It is possible that paper to laminate and hide in a secluded place. Not so long ago we have already published detailed instructions about how to create a paper wallet. Read.
Is it safe to use Bitcoin wallets?
It depends on the type and how you use them.
The safest option is a hardware wallet that you keep offline and in a safe place. So you eliminate the risk of hacking or theft. However, if you lose a wallet, while not having a backup of the private keys, you lose all bitcoins in it. The least secure option is an online wallet, since the keys are kept by the intermediaries. Although some are satisfied with this compromise in exchange for ease of use.
Many experienced users of cryptocurrency use something like a hybrid approach: most of the money they are stored on the hardware wallet without connecting to the Internet. But the money needed for daily expenses, is transferred to the mobile wallet, to easily dispose of them.
And yet, which option would you choose, always be on the lookout. Constantly back up, and tell your friends where you keep them and how to use them in a pinch.
In our cryptodata cautious of hontarov you will find lots of other useful information. Also look in our Yandex Zen.
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