How do you keep your bitcoins secure
Ever since its inception in the year 2009, bitcoins have been all the rage in the world cryptocurrencies. The fact that it is decentralized and has no middlemen makes it an ideal option to transfer of large sums of money. In recent times, Singaporeans are considering bitcoins as a safe way to invest their funds. The meteoric rise in the prices of bitcoins has drastically increased the user base of bitcoin wallets in Singapore.
The growing interest in the field of cryptocurrencies has attracted many scamsters and cybercriminals. According to a report published on Investopedia, the most common bitcoin scams are hardware wallet theft, exchange scams, fake ICOs, cloud mining schemes and multi-level marketing schemes. Even trojans like CryptoShuffler has contributed to the loss of bitcoins with high net worth. Hence, it has become all the more important to secure your bitcoins.
It’s no longer uncommon to hear about someone who lost thousands of dollars because they lost access to their bitcoins. You certainly don’t want this to happen to you. Just as you carefully guard your physical wallet, you also need to take necessary measures to protect your bitcoin wallet. The following ways may not fully secure your digital fortune from every conceivable attack but it surely can be a good start to ensure the security of your bitcoins.
Use a hardware wallet
One of the most common ways of securing your bitcoins is by using an offline storage facility like hardware bitcoin wallets or any portable storage device. Hardware wallets are also known as cold storage wallets, as they are not connected to the internet. Cybersecurity experts recommend not to store large amounts of bitcoins in digital wallets, as they are online and within the reach of online scamsters. Hardware wallets like Trezor are quite inexpensive and quite easy-to-use. They resemble a USB device and allows you to choose a PIN and recovery seed to secure your bitcoins. Alternately, you can also consider in any other storage device like a portable hard drive. But make sure you encrypt your data in case your storage device gets stolen.
Backup your wallet
If you decide to store your bitcoins in a hardware wallet, then make sure you create at least one backup in another encrypted storage device. This will secure your bitcoins even if you lose your hardware wallet. Experts suggest that you should do this often. In case of a computer failure, your habit of regularly backing up data will be the only way to recover the amount in your digital bitcoin wallet. And make sure you back up in multiple locations like on a USB, hard drive, and or CDs and set a strong password for each of these locations.
Store a small amount in a wallet app
You cannot store all your bitcoins in a hardware wallet as you won’t have any bitcoins to transact in your day-to-day life. So, it is wise to store few bitcoins in a digital wallet to facilitate low-cost transactions. And be sure to store only as you can afford to lose in your digital wallet, the rest should be kept in a secure location. Popular digital wallets like Coinhako and Coindesk can make your setup more seamless.
While you store your bitcoins in digital wallets, make sure you store your private key. A private key is used to generate a signature for each blockchain transaction you create. See to it that you encrypt it and avoid leaving them on devices you use regularly like your PC.
Make the most of the common safety features
While you aim to secure your bitcoins using sophisticated methods, make the most of the existing safety features. Use things like password manager, two-factor authentication, and advanced email protection features. Additionally, add a PIN or password to your phone number to prevent attackers from getting access to your accounts. You can also use the concept of multi-signature where 3-5 need to approve a transaction to take place. This way a single transactor or controller cannot carry out the transactions, thereby reducing chances of theft. These safety measures will ensure that you shield yourself from the simple cryptocurrency scams.
Watch all transactions carefully
You can protect your bitcoin wallet against malicious attacks by simply watching each transaction carefully. A typical cyber criminal works by silently lurking on your device, waiting for you to copy your bitcoin wallet address. When it finally sees relevant bitcoin address, it simply starts swapping your bitcoin wallet ID for its own malicious wallet address in the payment field. If at this stage you notice the exchange of IDs, then you can proactively work towards securing your bitcoins.
So, these were a few ways to secure your bitcoins from cyber theft. We hope you adopt these practices to ensure the safety of your bitcoins.
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