How to keep your bitcoin wallet safe from hackers.
Your wallet stores the private and public keys that are needed to access your digital assets. However, people with malicious intent can compromise these systems by taking advantage of your ignorance and negligence.
Let us look at some ways in which we can keep bitcoin wallets safe.
Use strong passwords for your wallet.
This can be easily overlooked, but a lot of accounts have been compromised because of weak passwords. A study shows that about 52% of people use the same passwords for multiple sites. Using the same weak password on different sites will increase the risk of your account being hacked.
You can bet that experienced hackers know of this fact. If they gain access to one of your accounts, it may take only a short while before the access your bitcoin wallet.
Avoid using common words, birthday, names, and passwords. They are surprisingly easy to crack.
One way to beef up your password is to use passphrases. Use very random words and combine them with alphanumeric symbols. Your password should be easy to remember. Doing so will make it more difficult for hackers to crack your password.
You can also adopt the method of changing your password frequently. You can use a password manager to keep track of all your passwords.
Use a paper wallet.
As secure as online wallets are, they can still get breached. You can use a paper wallet to make your bitcoin wallet more secure. Like you guessed, a paper wallet has your private key QR code and your address printed on a paper. Your paper wallet is completely inaccessible to hackers. The paper wallet has to be stored in a cool dry place to prevent it from deteriorating. Some choose to laminate the paper and store it in a safe. Losing it is not an option as there is no way to recover the lost assets without a backup.
Use a hardware wallet.
It is advisable to use a hard wallet if you possess a large amount of bitcoins or other cryptocurrencies. This makes it very hard for hackers to get access to your private key. A hardware wallet is usually an encrypted storage device like a hard drive or a USB drive. these wallets can not be accessed through the internet and this makes them very secure. In fact, there has not been any recorded case of a hacked hardware wallet.
Backup your wallet.
If you lose and forget your keys, there will be no way to recover your assets. This can easily be avoided by backing up your data. There are many ways to do this. One of these involves printing your keys offline and keeping it in a secure location.
Make digital copies of your bitcoin wallet and store them offline. We also recommend that you keep them in different locations such as on USB drives, hard drives, and CDs. After storing them, delete all the files from your computer, and also the recycle bin( hackers comb through the recycle bin to find data). You should also use a very strong password to encrypt the data.
Your seed phrase can also be used to recover your lost wallet. This must not fall into the wrong hands.
Be wary of links and emails.
Beware of phishing emails. We are not asking you to be paranoid, but you have to be more cautious with sites you visit and the emails to which you respond. These emails can lure you into downloading malware or virus on your mobile device or computer.
Phishers can also send you a link that closely resembles that of a legitimate site and infect your device when you click on them. They can also clone a website to get you to reveal your login details. You have to take your online security very seriously.
Always use a secure connection.
It is needless to say that connecting to public Wi-Fi to carry out transactions is a terrible idea. Hackers can hop on the network and steal sensitive information from your computer or phone. It would be safer to use your phone’s hotspot for connectivity. Use a secure WPA password and hide your network name while using Wi-Fi. It would help if you also use multiple firewalls and a reliable VPN while you surf the internet.
Do not put all your crypto eggs in one basket.
Having more than one wallet is an excellent strategy to make your assets safer. You can create multiple accounts for different purposes. Have one wallet for day to day transactions and have a more secure wallet for the one that holds more coins. you should use a more secure wallet type for the one with a more important wallet, preferably a hardware wallet.
Update your software regularly.
Antiviruses still play a huge part in keeping our devices safe from malware and other forms of attack. Software updates address vulnerabilities in a system. If you are still running old software, you are more vulnerable to attacks.
Before you install your wallet on any device, you should make a thorough scan to check for, and to eliminate viruses and malware.
Use multi-factor authentication
Multi-factor authentication adds an extra layer of security to your wallet. Using this method makes it extremely difficult for hackers to gain access to your wallet. It involves the use of another verification factor to gain entry to your wallet.
An example of this is Google verification. It uses a six-digit number that changes every minute, and only you have access to it. Another method is to use biometric factors such as your fingerprint. Hackers would have to go to great lengths to get your keys.
If you want to use your email for 2-factor authentication, we advise that you use a new email. Why? Because any other email you have has been used on other platforms like Facebook and LinkedIn. Using a dedicated email will make it harder for hackers to discover it.
The same rule applies to your phone. Dedicate a new sim for 2FA. You should know that not all wallets allow for 2-factor authentication.
A multi-signature also can be used to keep your wallet safer. Unlike the traditional method where one party’s signature is required for a transaction, multisig requires many people to authorize it. Multi-signature or multisig makes it more difficult for hackers to cart away with your bitcoins.
Keep your private key close to your chest.
You shouldn’t share your private key with anyone. No matter how much you are encouraged to drop your private key for third parties, you should not do it.
Hackers are always coming up with new strategies to compromise and steal your assets. Luckily, there are many ways to make your wallet more secure. It is also crucial that you keep up with evolving cybersecurity practices so you won’t be caught off guard.