Cryptocurrency is an encrypted, decentralized digital currency transferred between peers and confirmed in a public ledger via a process known as mining. The world of cryptocurrency is on the rise, and so is its application! The future of currency seems to be in the form of cryptocurrency, and like every form of currency, it must be kept securely and safeguarded. This protection is provided by cryptocurrency wallets.
A cryptocurrency wallet is a must when dealing with cryptocurrency. It is a software that allows you to easily store and manage your public keys (a public digital code associated to a certain amount of currency) and private keys (secure digital code is known only to you and your wallet). Basically, a cryptocurrency wallet is a secure digital wallet used to send, receive and store digitized currency. Great care must be taken while choosing a wallet. Before choosing a wallet to use, a few things must be kept in mind. A good wallet is easy to use, provides for security and backup, is constantly updated and allows you to control your private keys. There are several types of wallets. A few of the common types are paper wallets, hardware wallets and desktop wallets.
Best Hardware Wallets
More than 35% cryptocurrency users make use of hardware wallets. Hardware wallets are designed like USB devices and can be connected to any computer. They are very secure, and some hardware wallets can even be attached to hacked computers. They are not connected to the internet 24/7. They can be stored anywhere, secured with pins and easy to use. Generating and storing private keys offline using a hardware wallet ensures that hackers have no way of reaching the cryptocurrency of a user. Hardware wallets are considered to be the best wallet type. Here are a few of the best hardware wallets.
Ledger Nano S
A Ledger Nano S hardware wallet is one of the most inexpensive hardware wallets and is available for $95. It looks like an USB device. A user can sign into the device through a 4 digit pin each time it plugged into a computer. Transactions cannot be manipulated with, as they are physically verified on the embedded screen with the press of a button. What makes it more secure is the fact that it also supports high second-factor authentication, ‘FIDO’ (Fast Identity Online), on websites and their subordinates (like Google, Google Dropbox). It includes popular cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple and Litecoin. An added advantage is the fact that each cryptocurrency can be managed from the same device. During setup, a 24 word seed is created offline. This is used for recovery purposes. An additional word (checksum) can be added to the seed but must not be forgotten, as it is added to the original 24 word seed. A Ledger Nano S wallet can be used in offline mode as well.
Check out the video below to learn more about setting up the Ledger Nano S wallet.
Trezor operates as a cold storage device, which essentially means that it is always offline. It was initially created for the safe storage of Bitcoins, as its name literally means “vault”. Trezor can be used for Ethereum with the MyEtherWallet web interface. Trezor also supports popular cryptocurrencies like Litecoin, DASH, and Zcash. It is a small, key-shaped device which is connected to a computer through a USB cable. The cost of a Trezor hardware wallet is $99. It is considered to be the most secure wallet available. A pin code is required to access the device and after every wrong attempt to enter the pin, the user has to wait twice the power of the previous wait time. During setup, a 24-word seed is created offline. This is used for recovery purposes. An additional word (checksum) can be added to the seed but must not be forgotten, as it is added to the original 24-word seed. The video below describes this in more detail.
KeepKey is a very secure wallet which provides for bank-grade security. It costs $99 USD and is readily available on the market. This is used for recovery purposes. It is bigger in size compared to Trezor or Ledger Nano S wallets, and has a 3.12’’ (3.12 inches) screen. During setup, a 24-word seed is created offline. An additional word (checksum) can be added to the seed but must not be forgotten, as it is added to the original 24-word seed. It supports multiple popular cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Litecoin, Ethereum and DASH. KeepKey can securely connect a user to an exchange like ShapeShift. Perhaps the greatest advantage of purchasing KeepKey is the fact that it can run on multiple platforms like Windows, Mac, Linux as well as android! KeepKey is widely considered to be the best hardware wallet for Bitcoin and Ethereum. KeepKey has a solid backup system. If a user loses his/her device, the backup can be easily obtained.
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