Electrum Wallet ReviewElectrum is a feature-packed Bitcoin desktop wallet. It is lightweight and client-based; this essentially means that users must download the wallet to their desktop to use it. Around 10% of all Bitcoin transactions are through Electrum. A unique feature of Electrum is that it uses servers that index the Bitcoin blockchain. This process is relatively less private than what similar wallets have to offer but ensures the elimination of long synchronization durations. Electrum also provides for secure offline cold storage. The online computer is used to receive payments, while the offline computer securely signs transactions. Private keys are encrypted and are not shared with the server. Electrum can be used in association with other hardware wallets like Ledger Nano S and Trezor. All Electrum features are available when used with any of the hardware wallets. 2FA (two-factor authentication) is not available when it comes to an Electrum wallet (2FA ensures the safety of funds even if someone else knows the password linked to the account of a user). Hierarchical Deterministic (HD) Keys are not available as well (These allow for the creation of child keys from a parent key).
- Electrum is widely considered to be the best desktop wallet. Despite its few shortcomings, the positives of using the wallet outweigh its disadvantages.
- It uses servers that index the Bitcoin blockchain. They are decentralized and redundant and ensure that the wallet of a user is never down. If a server is down it switches to another server to ensure the operation of a user is never compromised.
- The private keys are encrypted and never leave the computer of a user but can be exported to other bitcoin agents. For this very purpose, the offline computer is used to securely sign transactions, while the online computer is used to receive payments.
- Information received from the servers is verified using SPV. Servers are authenticated using SSL. This provides for added security.
- Hardware wallets like Trezor and Ledger Nano S are popular among those who wish to store the bitcoins in cold storage. Bitcoins can be sent from such devices to the Electrum wallet.
- Electrum also supports third-party plugins and multi-signature services.
- It is compatible with several operating systems like Linux, Mac, and Windows.
- Electrum has a signature which must be verified during installation. This prevents malware from entering a computing system (malware attached itself to the electrum wallet code).
- The same wallet can be used on different computer systems without any hassle.
- Wallets can be recovered if lost with the help of a secret seed (created at the time of installation).
- The security provided by an electrum wallet is strong but it lacks a few key features. 2FA (two-factor authentication) is used to protect funds from being hacked even if the hacker knows the password to an account. Electrum doesn’t use 2FA.
- Another major disadvantage is the fact that it supports only Bitcoins.
- Electrum is not that easy to use for beginners and takes practice to master.
- The electrum wallet is just a wallet. It does not handle a large number of transactions very well, so mining to it is generally not recommended.