If you are a Bitcoin user, you would know that how important a Bitcoin wallet is. It is used to store all your Bitcoin assets and make transactions with other users.
Due to its significance, hackers, con artists, and thieves are always after your wallet. They develop different techniques to get into your wallet and steal your coins.
Most bitcoin users nowadays lack the knowledge as to how to keep their wallets from these attacks. As a result, they end up losing their assets. And since there is no way to track these tricksters, once you lose your coins, consider them gone for good.
In this post, we are going to discuss the most useful ways to protect your wallet, and hence the coins.
Check out our guide on what are the safest Bitcoin wallets to use to be more secure.
Bitcoin Wallet Protection Tips:
- Never use it on a smartphone: Smartphones are prone to hacking and theft. They can easily be hacked through the apps we download or even the mobile camera. So, if you want to protect the bitcoin wallet, stop trading it through smartphones.
- Versatile Bitcoin client: It hides users’ IP address and changes their address with each transaction. It also hides your privacy in public protocols, making it less vulnerable to third-party attacks.
- Identity protection: Avoid giving away your information on social platforms and try to keep your wallet key only to yourself.
- Encryption: Since your wallet is stored on virtual sites, it’s necessary to protect it with a strong password. If you are struggling to create a strong password, DESlock+ can help you create it and encrypt your bitcoin wallets from theft.
- Backup Your Wallet: Keep backups of your wallet. The information stored in the wallet is what all your bitcoin transactions are based on. Losing it without having a backup would mean that the information is gone forever. (Learn how to backup a Bitcoin wallet)
- Escrow service: Bitcoin transactions are irreversible and involve interactions with untrusted parties. In situations like this “Bitcoin Escrow Service” comes in handy. What happens here is that the buyer sends bitcoins to the Escrow service and the seller sends the product across to the buyer. After receiving the product, the buyer gives green signal to the escrow agent that he can make payment to the seller. The escrow service is considered to be one of the safest and error proof methods of bitcoin transactions. (Here are some of the best Bitcoin escrow services you might want to use)
- Multi-signature addresses: This method is extremely useful, especially when multiple users are using the same wallet. Multi-signature addresses prevent the misuse of wallet by an anonymous user. It requires signatures of all users, which helps to inform the signers that a transaction is being made.
These are some important tips to protect your wallet against cyber-attacks. In conclusion, don’t use it smartphones, don’t publicize your keys, use strong passwords, always have a backup, use escrow service and multi-signature system.
Remember, a Bitcoin wallet address is the most important aspect of your Bitcoin venture. Its security must be on top of your priority list. And to make sure it’s perfectly secured, follow the tips that are discussed in this article.
According to Goldman Sachs, the cryptocurrency markets will not recover from their present correction. On 5th February, Steve Strongin (Goldman Sachs head of investment research) said, the high correlation between several cryptocurrencies makes him really anxious. Some currencies that do not survive are expected to trade to zero due to the lack of intrinsic value.
Strongin is worried about the possibility that maybe one or a few of the existing cryptocurrencies could ascend from the speculative bubbles, just like the crypto equivalents of Google or Amazon. However, he said that he doesn’t think that most of the coins will ever recuperate to their all-time highs.
There have been many questions arising like, is there any cryptocurrency that’ll be like Google or Amazon? Or are they going to end up just like the other now-defunct search engines? Strongin said that this doesn’t mean that the prices of cryptocurrency cannot increase at all because they are in a speculative bubble at this time. But at the same time he said, that most of the cryptocurrencies might bounce back to their all-time highs, but some of them are never going see their current peaks ever again.
This clearly shows that the speculative bubble is coming to its end and rather than as a collective asset class, investors are going to start judging the cryptocurrencies from their individual merits as a lot of casual retail investors are already familiar with it. It also seems like the ICO (initial coin offering) success will suddenly come to its end.
Strongin said that the winners-take-most sight of the market is not very unique to Goldman Sachs. On Wednesday, the founder of DCG (Digital Currency Group) Barry Silbert, offered the same remarks at “Yahoo Finance All Markets Summit: Crypto” with explicably more positive stance on the entire industry.
According to Silbert, a huge majority of crypto-assets are facing a binary outcome. They are either going to become extremely valuable or they are going to become worthless. He added, this is why Grayscale Investments (a DCG portfolio company) launched its newest product, a fund related to crypto-asset investment and it holds the market cap (weighted positions) in the most major five cryptocurrencies and balances it again quarterly to imitate market movements.
Many other experts have also warned the investors on cryptocurrencies. Nouriel Roubini, who’s a well- known economist said on Tuesday, that the price of bitcoin would also crash to zero. Warren Buffett also said in a recent interview that cryptocurrencies are definitely going to have a bad ending.
To begin with, Bitcoin has been the talk of every news channel, tabloid, website, etc. for a long while now. It’s increasing popularity might’ve caused a little problem for the network. Bitcoin is in a messy situation right now and something needs to be done. Fortunately, two possible solutions have been proposed as well, but only one can exist.
What’s The Issue?
In simple words, Bitcoin is unable to withstand the number of transactions taking place on the network.
The technical explanation is that the 1MB block size limit which is programmed into the system has become a problem and is causing delays in the processing of transactions. Basically, a purchase can take from a few minutes to hours to confirm.
Two techniques were proposed, which result in two different solutions: Bitcoin Unlimited, and Segregated Witness. They’re both proposed software updates to the Bitcoin network with the aim to completely change the way Bitcoin functions.
Obviously, the two can’t coexist, that would “fork” the Bitcoin network – splitting it into two different digital currencies.
A fork is known as a software update. Basically, updating a program from an old version to a new one.
It is a compulsory software update that is required in order for the program to function. It can be implemented to fix bug errors or any security issues present in the older version of the software. Also, a hard fork is irreversible.
The “hard fork” will split the blockchain, leading to the introduction of a new chain of transactions branching from the original one.
Starting off with Bitcoin Unlimited, this proposal is favored majorly by Bitcoin miners. To understand this, you must know the concept of Bitcoin mining. Bitcoin miners use specified powerful computers to solve complex mathematical algorithms in order to verify a transaction and be rewarded with newly issued bitcoins.
We are aware that there is a built-in block size limit of 1MB in the Bitcoin network, however, BU gives miners the permission to vote on increasing the block size whenever they want. This gives them control of the Bitcoin network, due to which they’re favored by miners.
On the other hand, SegWit is being voted by many Bitcoin enthusiasts and developers. Their aim is to optimize the Bitcoin coding in a way that allows them to decrease the transaction size and increase the transaction volume, all while sticking to the 1MB block limit. They suggest the use of a soft fork.
A soft fork is a software update that lets the network to adapt to the new functionalities and features implemented. The update doesn’t interfere with the existing software and the older version will still be usable.
Who Will Be The Winner?
Aha! Too bad we can’t answer this question because half the community goes for SegWit and the other half for BU. There’s not really much we can do, just voice out our opinion and educate others with whatever we learn and maybe help them come up with opinions of their own.
We’ll just have to patiently wait and watch how this turns out.
I’d like to point out that I have a very limited technical knowledge and only know my way around a few technical terminologies. This post is a compilation of weeks of research that I’ve put together myself. So, if you do find any errors, do let me know in the comment section below and I’ll be sure to check back on them.
Early morning on August 1, Bitcoin’s blockchain split – A separate cryptocurrency was created called Bitcoin Cash
The purpose of a fork is that instead of creating an entirely new cryptocurrency that restarts at block 0, it just creates a replica version that shares the same history. This means that all the previous transactions on bitcoin cash’s blockchain are identical to bitcoin core’s blockchain. However, the future transactions and balances are to be completely independent of each other. Basically, everyone who owned bitcoin before the fork now has an equal amount of bitcoin cash as well.
First things first, if you seem to be in control of your own private keys or store your bitcoin in an exchange that credit users’ balance about bitcoin cash, you’re good to go and can access your new cryptocurrency instantly. However, if your coins are withheld in Coinbase, which said that they won’t be distributing bitcoin cash anytime soon, then you may be unfortunate.
This doesn’t mean Coinbase will be keeping your bitcoin cash but just that they believe it to be unimportant and that it won’t be worth anything in the long run. Although, this is susceptible to change if this is proven to be false.
What’s Bitcoin Cash?
There are thousands of cryptocurrencies present on the market. Some claim to be better and different than bitcoin, while others are just replicas. Bitcoin cash is just another altered digital currency.
To begin with, it was only created prior to the forking of bitcoin View Postcore, but this isn’t rare. Many other cryptocurrencies have also forked from bitcoin before, but none have been as successful as bitcoin cash is at the moment. One of the reasons behind its popularity is the fact that people now have an equal amount of bitcoin cash present and they are referring to it as “free money.” Also, this hard fork was set to coincide with bitcoin core activating a change in its code called BIP 148, which is a Bitcoin Improvement Proposal. After months of negotiation, Segregated Witness was activated which is meant to help bitcoin core scale during transactions.
What’s it worth?
At the moment, bitcoin cash is trading for $655.99 per coin, which is pretty great since it’s so new. It is the fourth-largest cryptocurrency by market cap right now. However, it’s really hard to sell bitcoin cash since most exchanges aren’t accepting deposits yet. Bitcoin users holding bitcoin cash in exchanges that are not supporting trading or outside exchanges are stuck.
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So, what’s next?
Most people are just waiting it out for when bitcoin cash is ready to be sold. If this happens, the price will drop or users might begin to like it and it gains value. The point is, no one can really predict what exactly is about to happen next. We survived the split, just have to make through the after-effects
Image Credits: twitter.com/coinbase, coinmarketcap.com