Take your wallet security seriously.
If you consider your wallet to just be ”a small investment” you might not consider to invest enough time in making proper backups or understanding your wallets.
There are many stories of early adopters and early Bitcoin miners, who have had significant amounts of Bitcoin in 2010 or even earlier. And some of them have thrown away hard drives with 10.000 or more Bitcoin. Some have spent weeks with metal detectors to scour through garbage fields in the hopes of finding their old hard drives.
Imagine you bought $1000 worth of Ethereum 3 years ago? Perhaps because you expected it might go up by more than a 1000%. And in this case it did. Ethereum rose tremendously, in the past years. Would you have taken the time to make adequate backups if you had anticipated that?
The lesson here:
Do not look at the current value of your wallet, but look ahead as well.
What are the essentials you need to know to make proper backups and work securely?
- You have to understand that your private key is like a password, you need to secure it like the password to your bank account, or even more
- Do not store passwords on your computer (unless you know enough about encryption to do that safely)
- Always be sure to understand the crypto wallet you are using. It is important to understand the difference between a software wallet and a hardware wallet. A hardware wallet can bring you better security while being easier to operate.*
- How can I make sure that I have a proper (paper wallet) backup of my wallet Seed file?
- How do I restore the wallet backup in case something goes wrong?
- If my computer or laptop is stolen, will I have a backup in a different place?
- If my computer is hacked or compromised, is my crypto safe?
- How do I make sure that my computer is not infected with virusses or RAT’s?**
*Cryptogeeks recommendation: Trezor hardware wallet. Why?
- It is relatively easy to work with (See Trezor Youtube tutorial)
- It is extremely secure if used properly
- It allows for multiple cryptocurrency to be securely stored on your own private key (this means, you own the cryptocurrency)
- It allows for easy backups (an 24 word backup seed you can write down and put in a secure place)
Pro Tip: or better yet, several backups stored in several places.
Some people really like Ledger as a hardware wallet, we have nothing against Ledger. Except that it can be hard to work with or understand. We believe that the easier a device works, the more people it can benefit. But the Ledger should also offer similar security benefits as the Trezor.
(For more information on Trezor check https://trezor.io/).
**Cryptogeeks recommendation: Look for a full antivirus and firewall software
Generally, Bitdefender and Kaspersky tend to score high in easy virus scanner and firewall solutions for consumers. Or check out this article on the top rated virusscanners by usnews.com. We think that having a virus scanner and firewall is the minimum requirement for a safe computer experience. Especially when dealing with cryptocurrency.
Pro tip: There are also hardwire firewall solutions for at home. This is also usefull to prevent that your smart devices can be hacked. Also read Techlifeland: Best firewall for at home.
We personally really like how easy it is to install Cujo (https://cujo.com/), as it can suit users who simply need a device to protect them without too much technical knowledge.