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How to Cold Store Your Cryptocurrency for Safekeeping

According to CipherTrace (which specializes in litigation tools and services for cryptographic markets), between 2018 and 2019, the amount of theft from cryptographic wallets exceeds $2 billion. Thefts and break-ins are caused by a variety of reasons: simple incompetence in cryptographic storage, as well as by companies that provide storage services. It is not unusual for holders of crypto currency to lose access to their wallets by themselves, one of the last known cases occurred in Ireland: ,57 million dollars couldn’t be confiscated from a detained drug dealer, which were stored in bitcoins. The problem was that the wallets keys were lost.
The most secure way is a cold storage — all account data and private keys are kept offline and all transactions are manual. This storage method is great because it is fully protected from hacking and interception of data, but it is not suitable for those who make daily transfers of cryptocurrency, it is simply inconvenient.
If you compare “cold and hot” wallets, you can give a simple example: A hot wallet can be compared to a wallet that can be lost and stolen. But you can always access your funds. A cold wallet is safe, and access to it is not permanent. You can also take or put money, but it will require a special code.
In this article we will tell you about the most popular types of cold wallets and we will analyze their pros and cons.

Types of cold wallets

All cold wallets have one common thing — the data is stored offline. However, there are several types of cold wallets, which differ in the degree of protection, physical embodiment and cost of the wallet.

Desktop wallet

Desktop wallets are also known for a high level of protection, in addition to the ability to store crypto currency offline. There are so-called “light” wallets weighing less than 1 gb, and “heavy” wallets weighing more than 1 gb. Two of the desktop wallets can be distinguished:

Exodus Wallet

Multicurrency wallet. It was created in 2016 and supports more than 100 crypto currencies, since 2019 has a phone application. The wallet allows you to export private keys that are created locally, and then to upload them back. Private keys can be discounted to removable media and downloaded only when the transaction is completed. If the user decides to leave private keys on the same computer where the wallet is located, keys are securely encrypted. In order to use your wallet ,there is no need to register or to download the entire blockchain — synchronization is taking place online. In addition to wallet services Exodus Wallet provides an integrated crypto-exchange. The installation file weighs 85 mb.

Bitcoin Core

Bitcoin Core is the official Bitcoin wallet. The size of the wallet is 160 gb, but according to the developers of the company, it’s better to give it a separate winchester with the size of 500 gb. From the security viewpoint, it’s suggested to install a security code or a seed phrase, which may consist 8 words. It is also suggested to copy wallet.dat file. — private wallet key, which will allow you to restore access to your funds.

Hardware wallets

Appears like a regular flash drive with an interface (screen, control keys). This wallet can safely store information about the balance and keys, full functionality is available only when connected to a computer, but the latest models have a special button that allows you to confirm the transaction without connecting to a PC. Each time the device offers to generate a new code-password to confirm the transaction, which significantly reduces the probability of hacking. After generating the code, you need to set a mnemonic phrase (seed) — it consists of 12 or 24 words, which are not related to each other in any way. Such type of wallets has a special protection system that allows you to connect even to potentially infected PCs. The wallets themselves won’t be affected by malware.
The obvious cons of hardware wallets are the following:
  1. It is also possible to lose a device that is so small in size.
  2. A physical device can easily fail due to a variety of damages.
  3. It is not recommended to buy such wallets from “hand”, even from friends, as they can be pre-installed with malware.
As you can see, storing crypto currency with a hardware wallets is very safe and secure, however you should take care about the device. Many people who hold a large amount of crypto currency, in order to not to lose a hardware wallet, store it in a safe deposit box, depriving someone of access to it.

Popular Hardware Wallets models

Trezor One

The first hardware wallet produced in 2013 by the Czech company Satoshi Labs. The device has an OLED display with a pin code, public addresses and Seed phrases. Trezor One has won recognition from users due to its multicurrency and affordable price ($65), it is also considered one of the most secure hardware wallets.
Ledger Nano S
The wallet was released in 2016 by the French company Ledger SAS. Distinctive feature from the other wallets, is the Secure Element controller, which meets banking standards and is certified CC EAL 5+. Also, in order to work with each crypto currency you need to install a special application for this currency on the device, it is not quite convenient, however more secure. The average price of the device is $85.
KeepKey
The purse was released in 2015 in the U.S.. Distinctive feature is OLED display — 256 by 64 pixels. Due to this, you can fully see both the address of the wallet, and the seed phrase. Also, the wallet has a built-in exchange service ShapeShift — an opportunity to exchange crypto currency without entering the exchange. The average price of the device is $50.
BitBox01
Ionos Schnelly’s wallet was invented in Switzerland. In size it’s almost the most compact among all representatives of the hardware wallets. A distinctive feature is the availability of a backup — the card can be multiplied and kept in several places, by analogy with the seed-phrase. In November 2020, support for these wallets will be discontinued, but all owners will be given a 30% discount on the new model. The average price of the device is $55.
CoolWalletS
Developed in Taiwan by CoolBitX, which has long been manufacturing components for Visa and MasterCard. As well as Ledger Nano S has a security standard CC EAL 5+. This wallet works only through smartphones, connecting to them through Bluetooch. The average price of the device is $100.

Paper Wallet

In the age of technological process, plain paper has become a rather reliable method for storing cryptocurrency. With the help of special services, such as bitaddress.org, you can generate public and private keys, then writing them down on paper. You can also print keys as a QR code. To accept transactions with such a wallet, you provide the sender with a public key. To access the funds, you need to find any online wallet that supports your crypto currency. Enter your private key into your online wallet, thus integrating your funds into the system. However, you should understand that after this procedure your wallet will become “hot”.
The best of this storage method — paper wallet is free, its safety depends only from you. When storing a paper wallet to protect it from the fire, water and aging. Also, do not tell other people about where your paper wallet is hidden.
The disadvantages of this storage:
  1. If your wallet is lost, it will be impossible to restore it.
  2. Exposed to a physical damage.
  3. After sending the transaction, you will have to create a new cold wallet.

Offline transaction signature

For this storage method, you will need two PCs. The essence is that the secret keys are never in contact with the Internet, but are stored digitally. Offline transaction method is suitable for people who do not make a daily transactions and have an access to two devices. The process is below:
  1. A hot wallet is installed on a PC with the Internet. The transaction is created without entering private keys and authorization.
  2. The file with transaction is copied and transferred to the second PC without Internet, where private keys are stored.
  3. The transaction is signed offline, copied and transferred back to the PC with the Internet.
In fact, you can do it with one PC and a USB drive. The USB drive will store private keys. Also, you can create a transaction without entering private keys and authorization, after disconnecting the Internet, connect the flash drive, sign the transaction, turn on the Internet. In this case, you should take care of the antivirus system.
The disadvantages of this method:
  1. Using two PCs or a USB drive involves a lot of actions, which is time consuming.
  2. You need to back up your keys in case your PC or flash drive fails.

Multi-signature wallet

This method implies the creation of a wallet, which can be only withdrawn on condition that the transaction is verified by a predetermined number of users. The maximum number of users who can hold private keys of the wallet- is 15. It is considered as one of the most reliable ways of storage, in fact private keys are not only stored offline, but also divided between different people. Often the wallet with multisignatures is used by large crypto-companies, whose management believes that individually employees can not spend the budget. Moreover, when creating this wallet, the number of required multisignatures is minimal. For example: if one of the six keys is lost, the remaining ones will be enough for the transaction.
The disadvantages of this storage:
  1. If most of the keys are lost, access to the funds cannot be restored.
  2. You will not be able to make transactions on your own without the participation of other key holders.

Private Key Fragmentation

The private wallet key consists of 64 symbols. The key is divided into several fragments. They don’t represent anything separately, but if you put all the fragments together, you can access the funds. The key fragments are similar to multisignatures, but in this case you don’t need a multisig-wallet, and the whole process can be done manually.
The disadvantages of this method:
  1. If one fragment is lost, access to funds will be lost.
  2. The maximum level of protection can only be reached when key fragments are distributed to different places, for example: bookshelf, safe deposit box, car. If you divide the key fragments and put them in different boxes — the required level of protection will not be achieved.
When writing down key fragments on paper, protect the key from fire, water and aging.

Conclusion

Digital currencies are not physically expressed and exist only in the digital code, so cold wallets that doesn’t have an access to the Internet, protect cryptocurrencies from the most important and common problem — hacker theft. However, holders of cold wallets need to understand that the safety of a private key depends only on them. There are different ways to store private keys outside the network, but each of them makes it difficult for the user to make transactions.
Hardware wallets that have been specifically designed for this purpose are considered to be the best option for storing cryptocurrencies. With their help it is possible both to store funds off the network and to make transactions easily, without risking the safety of a private key. If you use other cold wallets, it is recommended to combine them with hot wallets. Keep the required crypto currency for daily transfers on hot wallets, and keep all other crypto on cold wallets.
Please don’t forget to follow us on Telegram and stay updated!
YOUR CRYPTO BOSS
submitted by yourcryptoboss19 to u/yourcryptoboss19 [link] [comments]

Groestlcoin 6th Anniversary Release

Introduction

Dear Groestlers, it goes without saying that 2020 has been a difficult time for millions of people worldwide. The groestlcoin team would like to take this opportunity to wish everyone our best to everyone coping with the direct and indirect effects of COVID-19. Let it bring out the best in us all and show that collectively, we can conquer anything.
The centralised banks and our national governments are facing unprecedented times with interest rates worldwide dropping to record lows in places. Rest assured that this can only strengthen the fundamentals of all decentralised cryptocurrencies and the vision that was seeded with Satoshi's Bitcoin whitepaper over 10 years ago. Despite everything that has been thrown at us this year, the show must go on and the team will still progress and advance to continue the momentum that we have developed over the past 6 years.
In addition to this, we'd like to remind you all that this is Groestlcoin's 6th Birthday release! In terms of price there have been some crazy highs and lows over the years (with highs of around $2.60 and lows of $0.000077!), but in terms of value– Groestlcoin just keeps getting more valuable! In these uncertain times, one thing remains clear – Groestlcoin will keep going and keep innovating regardless. On with what has been worked on and completed over the past few months.

UPDATED - Groestlcoin Core 2.18.2

This is a major release of Groestlcoin Core with many protocol level improvements and code optimizations, featuring the technical equivalent of Bitcoin v0.18.2 but with Groestlcoin-specific patches. On a general level, most of what is new is a new 'Groestlcoin-wallet' tool which is now distributed alongside Groestlcoin Core's other executables.
NOTE: The 'Account' API has been removed from this version which was typically used in some tip bots. Please ensure you check the release notes from 2.17.2 for details on replacing this functionality.

How to Upgrade?

Windows
If you are running an older version, shut it down. Wait until it has completely shut down (which might take a few minutes for older versions), then run the installer.
OSX
If you are running an older version, shut it down. Wait until it has completely shut down (which might take a few minutes for older versions), run the dmg and drag Groestlcoin Core to Applications.
Ubuntu
http://groestlcoin.org/forum/index.php?topic=441.0

Other Linux

http://groestlcoin.org/forum/index.php?topic=97.0

Download

Download the Windows Installer (64 bit) here
Download the Windows Installer (32 bit) here
Download the Windows binaries (64 bit) here
Download the Windows binaries (32 bit) here
Download the OSX Installer here
Download the OSX binaries here
Download the Linux binaries (64 bit) here
Download the Linux binaries (32 bit) here
Download the ARM Linux binaries (64 bit) here
Download the ARM Linux binaries (32 bit) here

Source

ALL NEW - Groestlcoin Moonshine iOS/Android Wallet

Built with React Native, Moonshine utilizes Electrum-GRS's JSON-RPC methods to interact with the Groestlcoin network.
GRS Moonshine's intended use is as a hot wallet. Meaning, your keys are only as safe as the device you install this wallet on. As with any hot wallet, please ensure that you keep only a small, responsible amount of Groestlcoin on it at any given time.

Features

Download

iOS
Android

Source

ALL NEW! – HODL GRS Android Wallet

HODL GRS connects directly to the Groestlcoin network using SPV mode and doesn't rely on servers that can be hacked or disabled.
HODL GRS utilizes AES hardware encryption, app sandboxing, and the latest security features to protect users from malware, browser security holes, and even physical theft. Private keys are stored only in the secure enclave of the user's phone, inaccessible to anyone other than the user.
Simplicity and ease-of-use is the core design principle of HODL GRS. A simple recovery phrase (which we call a Backup Recovery Key) is all that is needed to restore the user's wallet if they ever lose or replace their device. HODL GRS is deterministic, which means the user's balance and transaction history can be recovered just from the backup recovery key.

Features

Download

Main Release (Main Net)
Testnet Release

Source

ALL NEW! – GroestlcoinSeed Savior

Groestlcoin Seed Savior is a tool for recovering BIP39 seed phrases.
This tool is meant to help users with recovering a slightly incorrect Groestlcoin mnemonic phrase (AKA backup or seed). You can enter an existing BIP39 mnemonic and get derived addresses in various formats.
To find out if one of the suggested addresses is the right one, you can click on the suggested address to check the address' transaction history on a block explorer.

Features

Live Version (Not Recommended)

https://www.groestlcoin.org/recovery/

Download

https://github.com/Groestlcoin/mnemonic-recovery/archive/master.zip

Source

ALL NEW! – Vanity Search Vanity Address Generator

NOTE: NVidia GPU or any CPU only. AMD graphics cards will not work with this address generator.
VanitySearch is a command-line Segwit-capable vanity Groestlcoin address generator. Add unique flair when you tell people to send Groestlcoin. Alternatively, VanitySearch can be used to generate random addresses offline.
If you're tired of the random, cryptic addresses generated by regular groestlcoin clients, then VanitySearch is the right choice for you to create a more personalized address.
VanitySearch is a groestlcoin address prefix finder. If you want to generate safe private keys, use the -s option to enter your passphrase which will be used for generating a base key as for BIP38 standard (VanitySearch.exe -s "My PassPhrase" FXPref). You can also use VanitySearch.exe -ps "My PassPhrase" which will add a crypto secure seed to your passphrase.
VanitySearch may not compute a good grid size for your GPU, so try different values using -g option in order to get the best performances. If you want to use GPUs and CPUs together, you may have best performances by keeping one CPU core for handling GPU(s)/CPU exchanges (use -t option to set the number of CPU threads).

Features

Usage

https://github.com/Groestlcoin/VanitySearch#usage

Download

Source

ALL NEW! – Groestlcoin EasyVanity 2020

Groestlcoin EasyVanity 2020 is a windows app built from the ground-up and makes it easier than ever before to create your very own bespoke bech32 address(es) when whilst not connected to the internet.
If you're tired of the random, cryptic bech32 addresses generated by regular Groestlcoin clients, then Groestlcoin EasyVanity2020 is the right choice for you to create a more personalised bech32 address. This 2020 version uses the new VanitySearch to generate not only legacy addresses (F prefix) but also Bech32 addresses (grs1 prefix).

Features

Download

Source

Remastered! – Groestlcoin WPF Desktop Wallet (v2.19.0.18)

Groestlcoin WPF is an alternative full node client with optional lightweight 'thin-client' mode based on WPF. Windows Presentation Foundation (WPF) is one of Microsoft's latest approaches to a GUI framework, used with the .NET framework. Its main advantages over the original Groestlcoin client include support for exporting blockchain.dat and including a lite wallet mode.
This wallet was previously deprecated but has been brought back to life with modern standards.

Features

Remastered Improvements

Download

Source

ALL NEW! – BIP39 Key Tool

Groestlcoin BIP39 Key Tool is a GUI interface for generating Groestlcoin public and private keys. It is a standalone tool which can be used offline.

Features

Download

Windows
Linux :
 pip3 install -r requirements.txt python3 bip39\_gui.py 

Source

ALL NEW! – Electrum Personal Server

Groestlcoin Electrum Personal Server aims to make using Electrum Groestlcoin wallet more secure and more private. It makes it easy to connect your Electrum-GRS wallet to your own full node.
It is an implementation of the Electrum-grs server protocol which fulfils the specific need of using the Electrum-grs wallet backed by a full node, but without the heavyweight server backend, for a single user. It allows the user to benefit from all Groestlcoin Core's resource-saving features like pruning, blocks only and disabled txindex. All Electrum-GRS's feature-richness like hardware wallet integration, multi-signature wallets, offline signing, seed recovery phrases, coin control and so on can still be used, but connected only to the user's own full node.
Full node wallets are important in Groestlcoin because they are a big part of what makes the system be trust-less. No longer do people have to trust a financial institution like a bank or PayPal, they can run software on their own computers. If Groestlcoin is digital gold, then a full node wallet is your own personal goldsmith who checks for you that received payments are genuine.
Full node wallets are also important for privacy. Using Electrum-GRS under default configuration requires it to send (hashes of) all your Groestlcoin addresses to some server. That server can then easily spy on your transactions. Full node wallets like Groestlcoin Electrum Personal Server would download the entire blockchain and scan it for the user's own addresses, and therefore don't reveal to anyone else which Groestlcoin addresses they are interested in.
Groestlcoin Electrum Personal Server can also broadcast transactions through Tor which improves privacy by resisting traffic analysis for broadcasted transactions which can link the IP address of the user to the transaction. If enabled this would happen transparently whenever the user simply clicks "Send" on a transaction in Electrum-grs wallet.
Note: Currently Groestlcoin Electrum Personal Server can only accept one connection at a time.

Features

Download

Windows
Linux / OSX (Instructions)

Source

UPDATED – Android Wallet 7.38.1 - Main Net + Test Net

The app allows you to send and receive Groestlcoin on your device using QR codes and URI links.
When using this app, please back up your wallet and email them to yourself! This will save your wallet in a password protected file. Then your coins can be retrieved even if you lose your phone.

Changes

Download

Main Net
Main Net (FDroid)
Test Net

Source

UPDATED – Groestlcoin Sentinel 3.5.06 (Android)

Groestlcoin Sentinel is a great solution for anyone who wants the convenience and utility of a hot wallet for receiving payments directly into their cold storage (or hardware wallets).
Sentinel accepts XPUB's, YPUB'S, ZPUB's and individual Groestlcoin address. Once added you will be able to view balances, view transactions, and (in the case of XPUB's, YPUB's and ZPUB's) deterministically generate addresses for that wallet.
Groestlcoin Sentinel is a fork of Groestlcoin Samourai Wallet with all spending and transaction building code removed.

Changes

Download

Source

UPDATED – P2Pool Test Net

Changes

Download

Pre-Hosted Testnet P2Pool is available via http://testp2pool.groestlcoin.org:21330/static/

Source

submitted by Yokomoko_Saleen to groestlcoin [link] [comments]

Start Here for Much Wallet WOW!

EDIT 2017-02-10: A word about Nodes

There is a discussion about nodes that came up today, where it seems I'm discouraging people from running the full QT/Core client. Yes and No. What I'm trying to make sure people understand is how things work, and that it is NOT mandatory to run a client in order to use Dogecoins (and yes, I realise that browser-based tools like coinb.in and wallet sweepers are 'clients' by strict definition).
That said, more nodes is absolutely a good thing for the network. Preferrably full nodes. How do you run a full node? Just run Core/QT and open up Port 22556 on your router so it can connect to more than 8 peers. What will it cost you? You need your machine to be on 24/7/365, you need enough storage for the full blockchain (currently about 20Gb. Bitcoin is over 120Gb) and enough bandwidth to keep it in sync and share blocks with peers. A couple of Gb a month, most likely. This is best done with a desktop on a wired broadband link. Or maybe a hosted VM in the cloud. :)

EDIT 2017-01-09: Wallets WITHOUT Clients

Since I started helping people on /BitcoinBeginners, I'm getting a lot of questions about how to use wallets without running clients or trusting third parties. So here are a couple of resources that will make that possible, and not just for Dogecoin:
Multi-Coin Wallet Generator Now supporting 129 currencies! Coinb.in Start by setting the currency, found in the gear wheel in the Broadcast tab. Dogecoin Wallet Sweeper Redeem 'paper' wallets containing up to about 100 UTXOs. Bitinfo Charts My favourite block explorer, handles a bunch of cryptos.
Using these resources, it is possible to hold, receive and spend coins in various currencies, without having to run QT or a 'lite' client. You can also download and run the pages on your own device.

EDIT 2016-11-23: SEMANTICS about MINING! :P

Even though there is already a section on mining below, it has been suggested given the huge number of posts on the subject that this needs to be made clearer. Since people get their panties in a twist over the word 'dead', lets change that...

MINING IS DEAD!

MINING DOGECOIN IS UNPROFITABLE!

Put simply, there is no way to mine Dogecoin and make a profit because of the massive hashpower provided by industrial-scale Litecoin miners. Mining Doge directly stopped being viable when our hashrate exploded with the introduction of AuxPoW. Mining with CPU's and GPU's died when ASICs were introduced. And mining with a laptop WILL kill your laptop and cost you a fortune to repair or replace. Mining Litecoin with an exchange that also mines Doge and others will earn less than the electricity consumed, and you won't recover your costs. Probably ever, but certainly not in any reasonable time.
Mining other currencies may be a thing, but that's beyond our scope here. This is /Dogecoin, not /GetRichMiningCryptos after all. If you want to mine the newest scamcoin for fun and profit, look elsewhere for advice. :/
Oh, and most important:

READ BEFORE YOU POST!

At any given time, there are half a dozen posts on the frontpage just like the one you're about to write, where the answers have already been given. Read them. Don't make people waste their time repeating themselves because you were too lazy to bother reading stuff. :P
So there I was, having a quiet Sundy arvo bludge, as you do, when 42points turned up on Facebook and asked me to write a new sticky post for /dogecoin. Why would he do this, when he should be having a bludge himself, I hear you ask? Well, seems he was doing exactly that, and wanted to fob off the work he’s too slack to do himself. ;) Ah well, being a sucker for punishment, I’ll grudgingly oblige I guess.
OK, first things first.

The Clients:

Dogecoin Core 1.10.0 2015-Nov-01
Bootstrap file for Core to save some download time.
Dogecoin Core Guide Wiki
MultiDoge v0.1.7 2016-Jan-31
Android Dogecoin Wallet 2.0.8 2016-Jan-18
Android Coinomi Wallet
Java Cate 0.14 alpha 2 Multicoin wallet 2016-Feb-14
Exodus multicoin wallet
iOS Doughwallet

Do you REALLY need a client?

Wallet ELI5
UTXO ELI5
Paper Wallet Generator
Sample HTML Wallet List
Dogetipbot subreddit and website
Dogechain Wallet
Block.io Wallet
Exchanges
BTC38
Poloniex
CoinSpot
ShapeShift - Not really an exchange, rather a currency trader.

Mining

Litecoinpool
Prohashing
Zpool

Explorers

BitInfoCharts - My favourite, has charts!
chain.so
dogechain.info
/dogecoindev where the devs hang out

More Info

Dogeducation
Technical Wiki
Preev currency value calculator

EDITS:

From peoplma
I was wondering if you could add just a couple things. A link to the coinomi android wallet, it's probably the best one out there. And a sentence somewhere along the lines of "if you need help with any dogecoin software you are welcome to make a post, but PLEASE include your OS, version number of the client, and any relevant transaction IDs that you are willing to share" if you can fit that in somewhere.
Also, if you want to link to Prohashing, I'm pretty sure it's the only Scrypt mining pool that will actually pay out in doge. The others I know of pay out in litecoin or bitcoin. And it's a profit switching multipool, so gives a better return than just mining ltc/doge.
And there's these two wiki articles I thought would be helpful to link /dogecoin/wiki/technical for those technically minded newbies or intermediate users who want to dig a little deeper. And maybe a link to /dogecoin/wiki/dogecoincoreguide next to the link for dogecoin core.
From pts2002
Finally a proper sticky post! Here's some other stuff you could add:
zpool.ca mining pool - You can get paid in pretty much any coin, and you can mine in multiple algos (currently mining lyra2v2 with my GPU). Doing about 500Ð/day
shapeshift.io exchange - My favourite exchange, quick and easy. No registration required!
Also, you should add some blockchain explorers!
chain.so - Support for bitcoin, litecoin and doge.
dogechain.info - Official blockchain explorer. Includes a wallet (already mentioned). Live update currently not working (?)
EDIT: Here's another thing I found!
preev.com currency value calculator - Easy way to check the value of your dogecoins (or bitcoins, or litecoins, or peercoins)!
submitted by Fulvio55 to dogecoin [link] [comments]

An extensive guide for cashing out bitcoin and cryptocurrencies into private banks

Hey guys.
Merry Xmas !
I am coming back to you with a follow up post, as I have helped many people cash out this year and I have streamlined the process. After my original post, I received many requests to be more specific and provide more details. I thought that after the amazing rally we have been attending over the last few months, and the volatility of the last few days, it would be interesting to revisit more extensively.
The attitude of banks around crypto is changing slowly, but it is still a tough stance. For the first partial cash out I operated around a year ago for a client, it took me months to find a bank. They wouldn’t want to even consider the case and we had to knock at each and every door. Despite all my contacts it was very difficult back in the days. This has changed now, and banks have started to open their doors, but there is a process, a set of best practices and codes one has to follow.
I often get requests from crypto guys who are very privacy-oriented, and it takes me months to have them understand that I am bound by Swiss law on banking secrecy, and I am their ally in this onboarding process. It’s funny how I have to convince people that banks are legit, while on the other side, banks ask me to show that crypto millionaires are legit. I have a solid background in both banking and in crypto so I manage to make the bridge, but yeah sometimes it is tough to reconcile the two worlds. I am a crypto enthusiast myself and I can say that after years of work in the banking industry I have grown disillusioned towards banks as well, like many of you. Still an account in a Private bank is convenient and powerful. So let’s get started.
There are two different aspects to your onboarding in a Swiss Private bank, compliance-wise.
*The origin of your crypto wealth
*Your background (residence, citizenship and probity)
These two aspects must be documented in-depth.
How to document your crypto wealth. Each new crypto millionaire has a different story. I may detail a few fun stories later in this post, but at the end of the day, most of crypto rich I have met can be categorized within the following profiles: the miner, the early adopter, the trader, the corporate entity, the black market, the libertarian/OTC buyer. The real question is how you prove your wealth is legit.
1. Context around the original amount/investment Generally speaking, your first crypto purchase may not be documented. But the context around this acquisition can be. I have had many cases where the original amount was bought through Mtgox, and no proof of purchase could be provided, nor could be documented any Mtgox claim. That’s perfectly fine. At some point Mtgox amounted 70% of the bitcoin transactions globally, and people who bought there and managed to withdraw and keep hold of their bitcoins do not have any Mtgox claim. This is absolutely fine. However, if you can show me the record of a wire from your bank to Tisbane (Mtgox's parent company) it's a great way to start.
Otherwise, what I am trying to document here is the following: I need context. If you made your first purchase by saving from summer jobs, show me a payroll. Even if it was USD 2k. If you acquired your first bitcoins from mining, show me the bills of your mining equipment from 2012 or if it was through a pool mine, give me your slushpool account ref for instance. If you were given bitcoin against a service you charged, show me an invoice.
2. Tracking your wealth until today and making sense of it. What I have been doing over the last few months was basically educating compliance officers. Thanks God, the blockchain is a global digital ledger! I have been telling my auditors and compliance officers they have the best tool at their disposal to lead a proper investigation. Whether you like it or not, your wealth can be tracked, from address to address. You may have thought all along this was a bad feature, but I am telling you, if you want to cash out, in the context of Private Banking onboarding, tracking your wealth through the block explorer is a boon. We can see the inflows, outflows. We can see the age behind an address. An early adopter who bought 1000 BTC in 2010, and let his bitcoin behind one address and held thus far is legit, whether or not he has a proof of purchase to show. That’s just common sense. My job is to explain that to the banks in a language they understand.
Let’s have a look at a few examples and how to document the few profiles I mentioned earlier.
The trader. I love traders. These are easy cases. I have a ton of respect for them. Being a trader myself in investment banks for a decade earlier in my career has taught me that controlling one’s emotions and having the discipline to impose oneself some proper risk management system is really really hard. Further, being able to avoid the exchange bankruptcy and hacks throughout crypto history is outstanding. It shows real survival instinct, or just plain blissed ignorance. In any cases traders at exchange are easy cases to corroborate since their whole track record is potentially available. Some traders I have met have automated their trading and have shown me more than 500k trades done over the span of 4 years. Obviously in this kind of scenario I don’t show everything to the bank to avoid information overload, and prefer to do some snacking here and there. My strategy is to show the early trades, the most profitable ones, explain the trading strategy and (partially expose) the situation as of now with id pages of the exchanges and current balance. Many traders have become insensitive to the risk of parking their crypto at exchange as they want to be able to trade or to grasp an occasion any minute, so they generally do not secure a substantial portion on the blockchain which tends to make me very nervous.
The early adopter. Provided that he has not mixed his coin, the early adopter or “hodler” is not a difficult case either. Who cares how you bought your first 10k btc if you bought them below 3$ ? Even if you do not have a purchase proof, I would generally manage to find ways. We just have to corroborate the original 30’000 USD investment in this case. I mainly focus on three things here:
*proof of early adoption I have managed to educate some banks on a few evidences specifically related to crypto markets. For instance with me, an old bitcointalk account can serve as a proof of early adoption. Even an old reddit post from a few years ago where you say how much you despise this Ripple premined scam can prove to be a treasure readily available to show you were early.
*story telling Compliance officers like to know when, why and how. They are human being looking for simple answers to simple questions and they don’t want like to be played fool. Telling the truth, even without a proof can do wonders, and even though bluffing might still work because banks don’t fully understand bitcoin yet, it is a risky strategy that is less and less likely to pay off as they are getting more sophisticated by the day.
*micro transaction from an old address you control This is the killer feature. Send a $20 worth transaction from an old address to my company wallet and to one of my partner bank’s wallet and you are all set ! This is gold and considered a very solid piece of evidence. You can also do a microtransaction to your own wallet, but banks generally prefer transfer to their own wallet. Patience with them please. they are still learning.
*signature message Why do a micro transaction when you can sign a message and avoid potentially tainting your coins ?
*ICO millionaire Some clients made their wealth participating in ETH crowdsale or IOTA ICO. They were very easy to deal with obviously and the account opening was very smooth since we could evidence the GENESIS TxHash flow.
The miner Not so easy to proof the wealth is legit in that case. Most early miners never took screenshot of the blocks on bitcoin core, nor did they note down the block number of each block they mined. Until the the Slashdot article from August 2010 anyone could mine on his laptop, let his computer run overnight and wake up to a freshly minted block containing 50 bitcoins back in the days. Not many people were structured enough to store and secure these coins, avoid malwares while syncing the blockchain continuously, let alone document the mined blocks in the process. What was 50 BTC worth really for the early miners ? dust of dollars, games and magic cards… Even miners post 2010 are generally difficult to deal with in terms of compliance onboarding. Many pool mining are long dead. Deepbit is down for instance and the founders are MIA. So my strategy to proof mining activity is as follow:
*Focusing on IT background whenever possible. An IT background does help a lot to bring some substance to the fact you had the technical ability to operate a mining rig.
*Showing mining equipment receipts. If you mined on your own you must have bought the hardware to do so. For instance mining equipment receipts from butterfly lab from 2012-2013 could help document your case. Similarly, high electricity bill from your household on a consistent basis back in the day could help. I have already unlocked a tricky case in the past with such documents when the bank was doubtful.
*Wallet.dat files with block mining transactions from 2011 thereafter This obviously is a fantastic piece of evidence for both you and me if you have an old wallet and if you control an address that received original mined blocks, (even if the wallet is now empty). I will make sure compliance officers understand what it means, and as for the early adopter, you can prove your control over these wallet through a microtransaction. With these kind of addresses, I can show on the block explorer the mined block rewards hitting at regular time interval, and I can even spot when difficulty level increased or when halvening process happened.
*Poolmining account. Here again I have educated my partner bank to understand that a slush account opened in 2013 or an OnionTip presence was enough to corroborate mining activity. The block explorer then helps me to do the bridge with your current wallet.
*Describing your set up and putting it in context In the history of mining we had CPU, GPU, FPG and ASICs mining. I will describe your technical set up and explain why and how your set up was competitive at that time.
The corporate entity Remember 2012 when we were all convinced bitcoin would take over the world, and soon everyone would pay his coffee in bitcoin? How naïve we were to think transaction fees would remain low forever. I don’t blame bitcoin cash supporters; I once shared this dream as well. Remember when we thought global adoption was right around the corner and some brick and mortar would soon accept bitcoin transaction as a common mean of payment? Well, some shop actually did accept payment and held. I had a few cases as such of shops holders, who made it to the multi million mark holding and had invoices or receipts to proof the transactions. If you are organized enough to keep a record for these trades and are willing to cooperate for the documentation, you are making your life easy. The digital advertising business is also a big market for the bitcoin industry, and affiliates partner compensated in btc are common. It is good to show an invoice, it is better to show a contract. If you do not have a contract (which is common since all advertising deals are about ticking a check box on the website to accept terms and conditions), there are ways around that. If you are in that case, pm me.
The black market Sorry guys, I can’t do much for you officially. Not that I am judging you. I am a libertarian myself. It’s just already very difficult to onboard legit btc adopters, so the black market is a market I cannot afford to consider. My company is regulated so KYC and compliance are key for me if I want to stay in business. Behind each case I push forward I am risking the credibility and reputation I have built over the years. So I am sorry guys I am not risking it to make an extra buck. Your best hope is that crypto will eventually take over the world and you won’t need to cash out anyway. Or go find a Lithuanian bank that is light on compliance and cooperative.
The OTC buyer and the libertarian. Generally a very difficult case. If you bought your stack during your journey in Japan 5 years ago to a guy you never met again; or if you accumulated on https://localbitcoins.com/ and kept no record or lost your account, it is going to be difficult. Not impossible but difficult. We will try to build a case with everything else we have, and I may be able to onboard you. However I am risking a lot here so I need to be 100% confident you are legit, before I defend you. Come & see me in Geneva, and we will talk. I will run forensic services like elliptic, chainalysis, or scorechain on an extract of your wallet. If this scan does not raise too many red flags, then maybe we can work together ! If you mixed your coins all along your crypto history, and shredded your seeds because you were paranoid, or if you made your wealth mining professionally monero over the last 3 years but never opened an account at an exchange. ¯_(ツ)_/¯ I am not a magician and don’t get me wrong, I love monero, it’s not the point.
Cashing out ICOs Private companies or foundations who have ran an ICO generally have a very hard time opening a bank account. The few banks that accept such projects would generally look at 4 criteria:
*Seriousness of the project Extensive study of the whitepaper to limit the reputation risk
*AML of the onboarding process ICOs 1.0 have no chance basically if a background check of the investors has not been conducted
*Structure of the moral entity List of signatories, certificate of incumbency, work contract, premises...
*Fiscal conformity Did the company informed the authorities and seek a fiscal ruling.
For the record, I am not into the tax avoidance business, so people come to me with a set up and I see if I can make it work within the legal framework imposed to me.
First, stop thinking Switzerland is a “offshore heaven” Swiss banks have made deals with many governments for the exchange of fiscal information. If you are a French citizen, resident in France and want to open an account in a Private Bank in Switzerland to cash out your bitcoins, you will get slaughtered (>60%). There are ways around that, and I could refer you to good tax specialists for fiscal optimization, but I cannot organize it myself. It would be illegal for me. Swiss private banks makes it easy for you to keep a good your relation with your retail bank and continue paying your bills without headaches. They are integrated to SEPA, provide ebanking and credit cards.
For information, these are the kind of set up some of my clients came up with. It’s all legal; obviously I do not onboard clients that are not tax compliant. Further disclaimer: I did not contribute myself to these set up. Do not ask me to organize it for you. I won’t.
EU tricks
Swiss lump sum taxation Foreign nationals resident in Switzerland can be taxed on a lump-sum basis if they are not gainfully employed in our country. Under the lump-sum tax regime, foreign nationals taking residence in Switzerland may choose to pay an expense-based tax instead of ordinary income and wealth tax. Attractive cantons for the lump sum taxation are Zug, Vaud, Valais, Grisons, Lucerne and Berne. To make it short, you will be paying somewhere between 200 and 400k a year and all expenses will be deductible.
Switzerland has adopted a very friendly attitude towards crypto currency in general. There is a whole crypto valley in Zug now. 30% of ICOs are operated in Switzerland. The reason is that Switzerland has thrived for centuries on banking secrecy, and today with FATCA and exchange of fiscal info with EU, banking secrecy is dead. Regulators in Switzerland have understood that digital ledger technologies were a way to roll over this competitive advantage for the generations to come. Switzerland does not tax capital gains on crypto profits. The Finma has a very pragmatic approach. They have issued guidance- updated guidelines here. They let the business get organized and operate their analysis on a case per case basis. Only after getting a deep understanding of the market will they issue a global fintech license in 2019. This approach is much more realistic than legislations which try to regulate everything beforehand.
Italy new tax exemption. It’s a brand new fiscal exemption. Go to Aoste, get residency and you could be taxed a 100k/year for 10years. Yes, really.
Portugal What’s crazy in Europe is the lack of fiscal harmonization. Even if no one in Brussels dares admit it, every other country is doing fiscal dumping. Portugal is such a country and has proved very friendly fiscally speaking. I personally have a hard time trusting Europe. I have witnessed what happened in Greece over the last few years. Some of our ultra high net worth clients got stuck with capital controls. I mean no way you got out of crypto to have your funds confiscated at the next financial crisis! Anyway. FYI
Malta Generally speaking, if you get a residence somewhere you have to live there for a certain period of time. Being stuck in Italy is no big deal with Schengen Agreement, but in Malta it is a different story. In Malta, the ordinary residence scheme is more attractive than the HNWI residence scheme. Being an individual, you can hold a residence permit under this scheme and pay zero income tax in Malta in a completely legal way.
Monaco Not suitable for French citizens, but for other Ultra High Net worth individual, Monaco is worth considering. You need an account at a local bank as a proof of fortune, and this account generally has to be seeded with at least EUR500k. You also need a proof of residence. I do mean UHNI because if you don’t cash out minimum 30m it’s not interesting. Everything is expensive in Monaco. Real Estate is EUR 50k per square meter. A breakfast at Monte Carlo Bay hotel is 70 EUR. Monaco is sunny but sometimes it feels like a golden jail. Do you really want that for your kids?
Dubaï
  1. Set up a company in Dubaï, get your resident card.
  2. Spend one day every 6 month there
  3. ???
  4. Be tax free
US tricks Some Private banks in Geneva do have the license to manage the assets of US persons and U.S citizens. However, do not think it is a way to avoid paying taxes in the US. Opening an account at an authorized Swiss Private banks is literally the same tax-wise as opening an account at Fidelity or at Bank of America in the US. The only difference is that you will avoid all the horror stories. Horror stories are all real by the way. In Switzerland, if you build a decent case and answer all the questions and corroborate your case in depth, you will manage to convince compliance officers beforehand. When the money eventually hits your account, it is actually available and not frozen.
The IRS and FATCA require to file FBAR if an offshore account is open. However FBAR is a reporting requirement and does not have taxes related to holding an account outside the US. The taxes would be the same if the account was in the US. However penalties for non compliance with FBAR are very large. The tax liability management is actually performed through the management of the assets ( for exemple by maximizing long term capital gains and minimizing short term gains).
The case for Porto Rico. Full disclaimer here. I am not encouraging this. Have not collaborated on such tax avoidance schemes. if you are interested I strongly encourage you to seek a tax advisor and get a legal opinion. I am not responsible for anything written below. I am not going to say much because I am so afraid of uncle Sam that I prefer to humbly pass the hot potato to pwc From here all it takes is a good advisor and some creativity to be tax free on your crypto wealth if you are a US person apparently. Please, please please don’t ask me more. And read the disclaimer again.
Trust tricks Generally speaking I do not accept fringe fiscal situation because it puts me in a difficult situation to the banks I work with, and it is already difficult enough to defend a legit crypto case. Trust might be a way to optimize your fiscal situation. Belize. Bahamas. Seychelles. Panama, You name it. At the end of the day, what matters for Swiss Banks are the beneficial owner and the settlor. Get a legal opinion, get it done, and when you eventually knock at a private bank’s door, don’t say it was for fiscal avoidance you stupid ! You will get the door smashed upon you. Be smarter. It will work. My advice is just to have it done by a great tax specialist lawyer, even if it costs you some money, as the entity itself needs to be structured in a professional way. Remember that with trust you are dispossessing yourself off your wealth. Not something to be taken lightly.
“Anonymous” cash out. Right. I think I am not going into this topic, neither expose the ways to get it done. Pm me for details. I already feel a bit uncomfortable with all the info I have provided. I am just going to mention many people fear that crypto exchange might become reporting entities soon, and rightly so. This might happen anyday. You have been warned. FYI, this only works for non-US and large cash out.
The difference between traders an investors. Danmark, Holland and Germany all make a huge difference if you are a passive investor or if you are a trader. ICO is considered investing for instance and is not taxed, while trading might be considered as income and charged aggressively. I would try my best to protect you and put a focus on your investor profile whenever possible, so you don't have to pay 52% tax if you do not have to :D
Full cash out or partial cash out? People who have been sitting on crypto for long have grown an emotional and irrational link with their coins. They come to me and say, look, I have 50m in crypto but I would like to cash out 500k only. So first let me tell you that as a wealth manager my advice to you is to take some off the table. Doing a partial cash out is absolutely fine. The market is bullish. We are witnessing a redistribution of wealth at a global scale. Bitcoin is the real #occupywallstreet, and every one will discuss crypto at Xmas eve which will make the market even more supportive beginning 2018, especially with all hedge funds entering the scene. If you want to stay exposed to bitcoin and altcoins, and believe these techs will change the world, it’s just natural you want to keep some coins. In the meantime, if you have lived off pizzas over the last years, and have the means to now buy yourself an nice house and have an account at a private bank, then f***ing do it mate ! Buy physical gold with this account, buy real estate, have some cash at hands. Even though US dollar is worthless to your eyes, it’s good and convenient to have some. Also remember your wife deserves it ! And if you have no wife yet and you are socially awkward like the rest of us, then maybe cashing out partially will help your situation ;)
What the Private Banks expect. Joke aside, it is important you understand something. If you come around in Zurich to open a bank account and partially cash out, just don’t expect Private Banks will make an exception for you if you are small. You can’t ask them to facilitate your cash out, buy a 1m apartment with the proceeds of the sale, and not leave anything on your current account. It won’t work. Sadly, under 5m you are considered small in private banking. The bank is ok to let you open an account, provided that your kyc and compliance file are validated, but they will also want you to become a client and leave some money there to invest. This might me despicable, but I am just explaining you their rules. If you want to cash out, you should sell enough to be comfortable and have some left. Also expect the account opening to last at least 3-4 week if everything goes well. You can't just open an account overnight.
The cash out logistics. Cashing out 1m USD a day in bitcoin or more is not so hard.
Let me just tell you this: Even if you get a Tier 4 account with Kraken and ask Alejandro there to raise your limit over $100k per day, Even if you have a bitfinex account and you are willing to expose your wealth there, Even if you have managed to pass all the crazy due diligence at Bitstamp,
The amount should be fractioned to avoid risking your full wealth on exchange and getting slaughtered on the price by trading big quantities. Cashing out involves significant risks at all time. There is a security risk of compromising your keys, a counterparty risk, a fat finger risk. Let it be done by professionals. It is worth every single penny.
Most importantly, there is a major difference between trading on an exchange and trading OTC. Even though it’s not publicly disclosed some exchange like Kraken do have OTC desks. Trading on an exchange for a large amount will weight on the prices. Bitcoin is a thin market. In my opinion over 30% of the coins are lost in translation forever. Selling $10m on an exchange in a day can weight on the prices more than you’d think. And if you trade on a exchange, everything is shown on record, and you might wipe out the prices because on exchanges like bitstamp or kraken ultimately your counterparties are retail investors and the market depth is not huge. It is a bit better on Bitfinex. It is way better to trade OTC. Accessing the institutional OTC market is not easy, and that is also the reason why you should ask a regulated financial intermediary if we are talking about huge amounts.
Last point, always chose EUR as opposed to USD. EU correspondent banks won’t generally block institutional amounts. However we had the cases of USD funds frozen or delayed by weeks.
Most well-known OTC desks are Cumberlandmining (ask for Lucas), Genesis (ask for Martin), Bitcoin Suisse AG (ask for Niklas), circletrade, B2C2, or Altcoinomy (ask for Olivier)
Very very large whales can also set up escrow accounts for massive block trades. This world, where blocks over 30k BTC are exchanged between 2 parties would deserve a reddit thread of its own. Crazyness all around.
Your options: DIY or going through a regulated financial intermediary.
Execution trading is a job in itself. You have to be patient, be careful not to wipe out the order book and place limit orders, monitor the market intraday for spikes or opportunities. At big levels, for a large cash out that may take weeks, these kind of details will save you hundred thousands of dollars. I understand crypto holders are suspicious and may prefer to do it by themselves, but there are regulated entities who now offer the services. Besides, being a crypto millionaire is not a guarantee you will get institutional daily withdrawal limits at exchange. You might, but it will take you another round of KYC with them, and surprisingly this round might be even more aggressive that the ones at Private banks since exchange have gone under intense scrutiny by regulators lately.
The fees for cashing out through a regulated financial intermediary to help you with your cash out should be around 1-2% flat on the nominal, not more. And for this price you should get the full package: execution/monitoring of the trades AND onboarding in a private bank. If you are asked more, you are being abused.
Of course, you also have the option to do it yourself. It is a way more tedious and risky process. Compliance with the exchange, compliance with the private bank, trading BTC/fiat, monitoring the transfers…You will save some money but it will take you some time and stress. Further, if you approach a private bank directly, it will trigger a series of red flag to the banks. As I said in my previous post, they call a direct approach a “walk-in”. They will be more suspicious than if you were introduced by someone and won’t hesitate to show you high fees and load your portfolio with in-house products that earn more money to the banks than to you. Remember also most banks still do not understand crypto so you will have a lot of explanations to provide and you will have to start form scratch with them!
The paradox of crypto millionaires Most of my clients who made their wealth through crypto all took massive amount of risks to end up where they are. However, most of them want their bank account to be managed with a low volatility fixed income capital preservation risk profile. This is a paradox I have a hard time to explain and I think it is mainly due to the fact that most are distrustful towards banks and financial markets in general. Many clients who have sold their crypto also have a cash-out blues in the first few months. This is a classic situation. The emotions involved in hodling for so long, the relief that everything has eventually gone well, the life-changing dynamics, the difficulties to find a new motivation in life…All these elements may trigger a post cash-out depression. It is another paradox of the crypto rich who has every card in his hand to be happy, but often feel a bit sad and lonely. Sometimes, even though it’s not my job, I had to do some psychological support. A lot of clients have also become my friends, because we have the same age and went through the same “ordeal”. First world problem I know… Remember, cashing out is not the end. It’s actually the beginning. Don’t look back, don’t regret. Cash out partially, because it does not make sense to cash out in full, regret it and want back in. relax.
The race to cash out crypto billionaire and the concept of late exiter. The Winklevoss brothers are obviously the first of a series. There will be crypto billionaires. Many of them. At a certain level you can have a whole family office working for you to manage your assets and take care of your needs . However, let me tell you it’s is not because you made it so big that you should think you are a genius and know everything better than anyone. You should hire professionals to help you. Managing assets require some education around the investment vehicles and risk management strategies. Sorry guys but with all the respect I have for wallstreebet, AMD and YOLO stock picking, some discipline is necessary. The investors who have made money through crypto are generally early adopters. However I have started to see another profile popping up. They are not early adopters. They are late exiters. It is another way but just as efficient. Last week I met the first crypto millionaire I know who first bough bitcoin over 1000$. 55k invested at the beginning of this year. Late adopter & late exiter is a route that can lead to the million.
Last remarks. I know banks, bankers, and FIAT currencies are so last century. I know some of you despise them and would like to have them burn to the ground. With compliance officers taking over the business, I would like to start the fire myself sometimes. I hope this extensive guide has helped some of you. I am around if you need more details. I love my job despite all my frustration towards the banking industry because it makes me meet interesting people on a daily basis. I am a crypto enthusiast myself, and I do think this tech is here to stay and will change the world. Banks will have to adapt big time. Things have started to change already; they understand the threat is real. I can feel the generational gap in Geneva, with all these old bankers who don’t get what’s going on. They glaze at the bitcoin chart on CNBC in disbelief and they start to get it. This bitcoin thing is not a joke. Deep inside, as an early adopter who also intends to be a late exiter, as a libertarian myself, it makes me smile with satisfaction.
Cheers. @swisspb on telegram
submitted by Swissprivatebanker to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

Secure paper wallet tutorial

This is my handout for paranoid people who want a way to store bitcoin safely. It requires a little work, but this is the method I use because it should be resistant to risks associated with:
  1. Bad random number generators
  2. Malicious or flawed software
  3. Hacked computers
If you want a method that is less secure but easier, skip to the bottom of this post.
The Secure Method
  1. Download bitaddress.org. (Try going to the website and pressing "ctrl+s")
  2. Put the bitaddress.org file on a computer with an operating system that has not interacted with the internet much or at all. The computer should not be hooked up to the internet when you do this. You could put the bitaddress file on a USB stick, and then turn off your computer, unplug the internet, and boot it up using a boot-from-CD copy of linux (Ubuntu or Mint for example). This prevents any mal-ware you may have accumulated from running and capturing your keystrokes. I use an old android smart phone that I have done a factory reset on. It has no sim-card and does not have the password to my home wifi. Also the phone wifi is turned off. If you are using a fresh operating system, and do not have a connection to the internet, then your private key will probably not escape the computer.
  3. Roll a die 62 times and write down the sequence of numbers. This gives you 2160 possible outcomes, which is the maximum that Bitcoin supports.
  4. Run bitaddress.org from your offline computer. Input the sequence of numbers from the die rolls into the "Brain Wallet" tab. By providing your own source of randomness, you do not have to worry that the random number generator used by your computer is too weak. I'm looking at you, NSA ಠ_ಠ
  5. Brain Wallet tab creates a private key and address.
  6. Write down the address and private key by hand or print them on a dumb printer. (Dumb printer means not the one at your office with the hard drive. Maybe not the 4 in 1 printer that scans and faxes and makes waffles.) If you hand copy them you may want to hand copy more than one format. (WIF and HEX). If you are crazy and are storing your life savings in Bitcoin, and you hand copy the private key, do a double-check by typing the private key back into the tool on the "Wallet Details" tab and confirm that it recreates the same public address.
  7. Load your paper wallet by sending your bitcoin to the public address. You can do this as many times as you like.
  8. You can view the current balance of your paper wallet by typing the public address into the search box at blockchain.info
  9. If you are using an old cell phone or tablet do a factory reset when you are finished so that the memory of the private keys is destroyed. If you are using a computer with a boot-from-CD copy of linux, I think you can just power down the computer and the private keys will be gone. (Maybe someone can confirm for me that the private keys would not be able to be cached by bitaddress?)
  10. To spend your paper wallet, you will need to either create an offline transaction, or import the private key into a hot wallet. Creating an offline transaction is dangerous if you don't know what you are doing. Importing to a client side wallet like Bitcoin-Qt, Electrum, MultiBit or Armory is a good idea. You can also import to an online wallet such as Blockchain.info or Coinbase.
Trusting bitaddress.org
The only thing you need bitaddress.org to do is to honestly convert the brainwallet passphrase into the corresponding private key and address. You can verify that it is doing this honestly by running several test passphrases through the copy of bitaddress that you plan on using, and several other brainwallet generators. For example, you could use the online version of bitaddress, and brainwallet and safepaperwallet and bitcoinpaperwallet. If you are fancy with the linux command line, you can also try "echo -n my_die_rolls | sha256sum". The linux operating system should reply with the same private key that bitaddress makes. This protects you from a malicious paper wallet generator.
Trusting your copy of bitaddress.org
Bitaddress publishes the sha1 hash of the bitaddress.org website at this location:
https://www.bitaddress.org/pgpsignedmsg.txt
The message is signed by the creator, pointbiz. I found his PGP fingerprint here:
https://github.com/pointbiz/bitaddress.org/issues/18
"527B 5C82 B1F6 B2DB 72A0 ECBF 8749 7B91 6397 4F5A"
With this fingerprint, you can authenticate the signed message, which gives you the hash of the current bitaddress.org file. Then you can hash your copy of the file and authenticate the file.
I do not have a way to authenticate the fingerprint itself, sorry. According to the website I linked to, git has cryptographic traceability that would enable a person to do some research and authenticate the fingerprint. If you want to go that far, knock yourself out. I think that the techniques described in this document do not really rely on bitaddress being un-corrupt. Anyway, how do we know pointbiz is a good guy? ;-)
There are a lot of skilled eyes watching bitaddress.org and the signed sha1 hash. To gain the most benefit from all of those eyes, it's probably worthwhile to check your copy by hashing it and comparing to the published hash.
"But we aren't supposed to use brainwallets"
You are not supposed to use brainwallets that have predictable passphrases. People think they are pretty clever about how they pick their passphrases, but a lot of bitcoins have been stolen because people tend to come up with similar ideas. If you let dice generate the passphrase, then it is totally random, and you just need to make sure to roll enough times.
How to avoid spending your life rolling dice
When I first started doing this, I rolled a die 62 times for each private key. This is not necessary. You can simply roll the die 62 times and keep the sequence of 62 numbers as a "seed". The first paper address you create would use "my die rolls-1" as the passphrase, the second would be "my die rolls-2" and so on. This is safe because SHA256 prevents any computable relationship between the resulting private key family.
Of course this has a certain bad security scenario -- if anyone obtains the seed they can reconstruct all of your paper wallets. So this is not for everyone! On the other hand, it also means that if you happen to lose one of your paper wallets, you could reconstruct it so long as you still had the seed.
One way to reduce this risk is to add an easy to remember password like this: "my die rolls-password-1".
If you prefer, you can use a technique called diceware to convert your die rolls to words that still contain the same quantity of entropy, but which could be easier to work with. I don't use diceware because it's another piece of software that I have to trust, and I'm just copy/pasting my high entropy seed, so I don't care about how ugly it is.
Why not input the dice as a Base 6 private key on the Wallet Details tab?
Two reasons. First of all, this option requires that you roll the die 99 times, but you do not get meaningful additional protection by rolling more than 62 times. Why roll more times if you don't have to? Second, I use the "high entropy seed" method to generate multiple private keys from the same die rolls. Using the Base 6 option would require rolling 99 times for every private key.
I'm a big nerd with exotic dice. How many times to roll?
Put this formula in Excel to get the number of times to roll: "=160*LOG(2,f)" where f = number of faces on the die. For example, you would roll a d16 40 times. By the way, somewhat unbelievably casino dice are more fair than ordinary dice
The "Change address" problem:
You should understand change addresses because some people have accidentally lost money by not understanding it.
Imagine your paper wallet is a 10 dollar bill. You use it to buy a candy bar. To do this you give the cashier the entire 10 dollar bill. They keep 1 dollar and give you 9 dollars back as change.
With Bitcoin, you have to explicitly say that you want 9 dollars back, and you have to provide an address where it should go to. If you just hand over the 10 dollar bill, and don't say you want 9 dollars back, then the miner who processes the transaction gives 1 dollar to the store and keeps the remainder themselves.
Wallet software like Bitcoin-Qt handles this automatically for you. They automatically make "change addresses" and they automatically construct transactions that make the change go to the change address.
There are three ways I know of that the change problem can bite you:
  1. You generate a raw transaction by hand, and screw up. If you are generating a transaction "by hand" with a raw transaction editor, you need to be extra careful that your outputs add up to the same number as your inputs. Otherwise, the very lucky miner who puts your transaction in a block will keep the difference.
  2. You import a paper wallet into a wallet software and spend part of it, and then think that the change is in the paper wallet. The change is not in the paper wallet. It is in a change address that the wallet software generated. That means that if you lose your wallet.dat file you will lose all the change. The paper wallet is empty.
  3. You import a paper wallet into a wallet software and spend part of it, and then think that the change is in the change address that the wallet software generated. If the transaction did not need to consume all of the "outputs" used to fund the paper wallet, then there could be some unspent outputs still located at the address of the paper wallet. If you destroyed the paper wallet, and destroyed the copy of the private key imported to the wallet software, then you could not access this money. (E.g. if you restored the software wallet from its seed, thinking all of the money was moved to the wallet-generated change addresses.)
For more on this, see here
The hot paper wallet problem
Your bitcoin in your paper wallet are secure, so long as the piece of paper is secure, until you go to spend it. When you spend it, you put the private key onto a computer that is connected to the internet. At this point you must regard your paper wallet address as hot because the computer you used may have been compromised. It now provides much less protection against theft of your coins. If you need the level of protection that a cold paper wallet provides, you need to create a new one and send your coins to it.
Destroying your paper wallet address
Do not destroy the only copy of a private key without verifying that there is no money at that address. Your client may have sent change to your paper wallet address without you realizing it. Your client may have not consumed all of the unspent outputs available at the paper wallet address. You can go to blockchain.info and type the public address into the search window to see the current balance. I don't bother destroying my used/empty paper wallet addresses. I just file them away.
Encrypting your private key
BIP 0038 describes a standardized way to encrypt your paper wallet private key. A normal paper wallet is vulnerable because if anyone sees the private key they can take the coins. The BIP38 protocol is even resistant to brute force attacks because it uses a memory intensive encryption algorithm called scrypt. If you want to encrypt your wallets using BIP38, I recommend that you use bitcoinpaperwallet because they will let you type in your own private key and will encrypt it for you. As with bitaddress, for high security you should only use a local copy of this website on a computer that will never get connected to the internet.
Splitting your private key
Another option for protecting the private key is to convert it into multiple fragments that must be brought together. This method allows you to store pieces of your key with separate people in separate locations. It can be set up so that you can reconstitute the private key when you have any 2 out of the 3 fragments. This technique is called Shamir's Secret Sharing. I have not tried this technique, but you may find it valuable. You could try using this website http://passguardian.com/ which will help you split up a key. As before, you should do this on an offline computer. Keep in mind if you use this service that you are trusting it to work properly. It would be good to find other independently created tools that could be used to validate the operation of passguardian. Personally, I would be nervous destroying the only copy of a private key and relying entirely on the fragments generated by the website.
Looks like Bitaddress has an implementation of Shamir's Secret Sharing now under the "Split Wallet" tab. However it would appear that you cannot provide your own key for this, so you would have to trust bitaddress.
Durable Media
Pay attention to the media you use to record your paper wallet. Some kinds of ink fade, some kinds of paper disintegrate. Moisture and heat are your enemies.
In addition to keeping copies of my paper wallet addresses I did the following:
  1. Order a set of numeric metal stamps. ($10)
  2. Buy a square galvanized steel outlet cover from the hardware store ($1)
  3. Buy a sledgehammer from the hardware store
  4. Write the die rolls on the steel plate using a sharpie
  5. Use the hammer to stamp the metal. Do all the 1's, then all the 2's etc. Please use eye protection, as metal stamp may emit sparks or fly unexpectedly across the garage. :-)
  6. Use nail polish remover to erase the sharpie
Electrum
If you trust electrum you might try running it on an offline computer, and having it generate a series of private keys from a seed. I don't have experience with this software, but it sounds like there are some slick possibilities there that could save you time if you are working with a lot of addresses.
Message to the downvoters
I would appreciate it if you would comment, so that I can learn from your opinion. Thanks!
The Easy Method
This method is probably suitable for small quantities of bitcoin. I would not trust it for life-altering sums of money.
  1. Download the bitaddress.org website to your hard drive.
  2. Close your browser
  3. Disconnect from the internet
  4. Open the bitaddress.org website from your hard drive.
  5. Print a paper wallet on your printer
  6. Close your browser
submitted by moral_agent to BitcoinWallet [link] [comments]

MultiDoge 0.1.1 released - Much bugfix. Wow.

FINALLY :D
Yep, we just pushed version 0.1.1 of MultiDoge with some much needed bugfixes, but also small new functions! If you open the program now, it should notify you about the new version :)
Changelog
Download Right here: http://multidoge.org/ Source: https://github.com/langerhans/multidoge
How to update Check here: http://multidoge.org/help/v0.1/help_upgrading.html TL;DR:
  1. Backup your wallet by exporting keys or copying the data directory.
  2. Install new version.
  3. Check if all is okay.
  4. Uninstall old version.
Can't I just overwrite the old one? No, it's a matter of security. In the unlikely case something breaks with the new version you can easily go back to the old version.
Moon? TO THE MOON!
Something else? We have a subreddit now for suggestions and stuff: /multidoge
submitted by langer_hans to dogecoin [link] [comments]

Bitcoin client comparison? Ease of use, functionality, security etc..

Hey everyone,
I've recently started using bitcoins, and been trying to figure out the best way to store them.. There are a bunch of desktop clients available, each with it's ups and downs, supporting different features, and using different amount of resources..
I wanted to find a nice overview of them all, but so far I'm not finding anything that I wanted to know.. So I think we should have some kind of wiki page, that describes them in more details. Explains how to start using each of them, and how to ensure it's safe.
For example, to try and secure my wallet files, I'm storing them in a TrueCrypt volume, that's archived to the cloud. This way they are backed up to multiple locations, incase my machine dies, and are also encrypted, in case one of the machines is compromised! I'm not sure if that's overkill or not :)
I thought I'd start with a short write-up of my opinions on some of the clients and my impressions of them. It's by no means a comprehensive review (that would take a lot more space than a single reddit post). All of this is just a subjective view on each of the clients.. I hope more people will add to it, maybe even compoling a nice and informative comparison of all the popular clients!
  1. Bitcoin-QT: The official client. Somewhat basic in functionality, advanced functions (like backing up the private key) available through the "debug" window., but works well for a lot of people.. You can backup the wallet.dat file in the TrueCrypt volume to secure the coins, but the client will store the main working copy of the wallet file in %APPDATA% in Windows - leaving it potentially compromised, unless you encrypt the wallet file (part of the client's functionality). There's no obvious way to change the storage location.
    The downside (upside for some?) of the client is that it stores the whole blockchain.. (almost 15GB atm) Initial synchronisation takes a lot of time.. If you don't use it for some time, you'll have to synchronise again, which takes time (and CPU resources btw)..
    At the end of the day, the wallet is as secure as your machine is. No support for paper wallets / watch-only wallets / offline storage, transactions.. But for basic use - it works perfectly fine.
  2. Bitcoin Armory: A popular powerful client, runs "on top" of Bitcoin-QT, which means the blockchain is also stored on the local drive.. On top of that, the Armory client will also build a local database to manage it, which means it needs more storage on it's own.. (at the moment, that's an extra 16GB on top of the blockchain!). Also, the synchronisation status is not very helpful, just saying the % synchronised.. At least Bitcoin-QT states how many weeks/days you are behind, so you can somewhat estimate how soon the sync will work.
    The Armory client supports multiple wallets, compared to the official client, which can be stored separately. The wallets use (correct me if I'm wrong?) a deterministic key to generate the private keys, which means if you backup your wallet in cold storage - you can restore it at any point, and restore all the new addresses generated after the backup - a very useful feature. The Armory client has more advanced functionality like paper backups (described above), offline wallets and offline transactions, and a lot more.. Some features are missing, like importing watch-only addresses. You can though create a watch-only backup of a wallet, and import that on a different machine, but if you only have an address - not supported atm.
    The client seems rather powerful, but also feels a bit clunky and hard to use.. Some functionality is missing, and just strange (not all private key formats are supported.. even if most other clients have no problems with them)
  3. MultiBit: A lite bitcoin client, that doesn't store the whole blockchain locally. This makes it a lot easier to start using, even on a new machine. It will only synchronise a part of the blockchain that is relevant for a specific address, which means you save on both time and storage when using it, but it can be (potentially, but quite unlikely) compromised, if the only nodes it can see are rogue.
    It also supports multiple wallets, you can select where to store the wallet files, and they can be password protected as well. You can store them on a TrueCrypt volume, to secure it even more. The app is still relatively simple to use, while providing more functionality than just the basics.
    Compared to Armory and Bitcoin-QT, you can also create a portable installation, which can be stored on a USB key / True Crypt volume along with the key files.
  4. Electrum: This is one of the clients I've hardly used so far.. It has a full and a portable version! With the portable version I can store they keys where I want, and keep them secure as I see fit. As MultiBit, it doesn't store the full chain, but instead will use a server to keep and manage the blockchain. But nothing is stopping you from running your own electrum server and connecting to it, if you're worried.
    The client seems rather simple, but powerful at the same time. Same as Armory - it will create a seed that will be used to generate addresses. The nice thing is that it will generate multiple receiving addresses, and will also maintain change addresses, which (if I'm right) means that each transaction will not reuse the same address twice, unless you force it to. My only gripe so far with it is that it's the only client so far where you can't send to multiple addresses in one transaction, forcing only a single recipient per transaction.. I hope that'll change in the future :(
submitted by artiomchi to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

Blockchain Wallets

Hello! My name is Inna Halahuz, I am a sales manager at Platinum, the largest listing service provider for the STO and ICO projects. We know all about the best and most useful STO and ICO marketing services.
By the way, we developed the best blockchain platform:
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What a Blockchain Wallet is? What is its purpose?
Find the answer after reading this article.
Public/Private Key
The public key is the digital code you give to someone that wants to transfer ownership of a unit of cryptocurrency to you; and a private key is what you need to be able to unlock your own wallet to transfer a unit of a cryptocurrency to someone else. The encoding of information within a wallet is done by the private and public keys. That is the main component of the encryption that maintains the security of the wallet. Both keys function in simultaneous encryption systems called symmetric and asymmetric encryption. The former, alternatively known as private key encryption, makes use of the same key for encryption and decryption. The latter, asymmetric encryption, utilizes two keys, the public and private key, wherein a message-sender encrypts the message with the public key, and the recipient decodes it with their private key. The public key uses asymmetric algorithms that convert messages into an unreadable format. A person who possesses a public key can encrypt the message for a specific receiver.
Accessing wallets
Methods of wallet access vary depending on the type of wallet being used. Various types of currency wallets on an exchange will normally be accessed via the exchange’s entrance portal, normally involving a combination of a username/password and optionally, 2FA (Two factor authentication, which we explain in more detail later). Whereas hardware wallets need to be connected to an internet enabled device, and then have a pin code entered manually by the user in possession of the hardware wallet in order for access to be gained. Phone wallets are accessed through the device on which the wallet application has been downloaded. Ordinarily, a passcode and/or security pattern must be entered before entry is granted, in addition to 2FA for withdrawals.
Satoshi Nakamoto built the Satoshi client which evolved into Bitcoin in 2009. This software allowed users to create wallets and send money to other addresses. However, it proved to be a nightmarish user experience, with many transactions being sent to incorrect addresses and private keys being lost. The MtGox (Magic the Gathering Online exchange, named after the original intended use of the exchange) incident, which will be covered in greater detail later, serves as a reminder of the dangers present in the cryptosphere regarding security, and the need to constantly upgrade your defenses against all potential hacks. The resulting loss of 850k BTC is a still unresolved problem, weighing heavily on the victims and the markets at large. This caused a huge push for a constantly evolving and improving focus on security. Exchanges that developed later, and are thus considered more legitimate and secure, such as Gemini and Coinbase, put a much greater emphasis on vigilance as a direct result of the MtGox hacking incident. We also saw the evolution of wallet security into the physical realm with the creation of hardware wallets, most notable among them the Ledger and Trezor wallets.
Types of Wallets & Storage Methods
The simplest way to sift through the dozens of cryptocurrency storage methods available today, is to divide them up into digital and non-digital, software and hardware wallets. There are also less commonly used methods of storage of private keys, like paper wallets and brain wallets. We will examine them all at least briefly, because in the course of your interaction with cryptocurrencies and Blockchain technology, it is essential to master all the different types of hardware and software wallets. Another distinction must be made between hot wallets and cold wallets. A hot wallet is one that is connected to the internet, and a cold wallet is one that is not. Fun fact: The level below cold storage, deep cold storage has just recently been implemented by the Regal RA DMCC, a subsidiary of an internationally renowned gold trading company licensed in the Middle East. After having been granted a crypto trading license, Regal RA launched their “deep cold” storage solution for traders and investors, which offers the ability to store crypto assets in vaults deep below the Almas Tower in Dubai. This storage method is so secure that at no point is the vault connected to a network or the internet; meaning the owners of the assets can be sure that the private keys are known only to the rightful owners.
Lets take a quick look at specific features and functionality of varieties of crypto wallets. Software wallets: wallet applications installed on a laptop, desktop, phone or tablet. Web Wallets: A hot wallet by definition. Web Wallets are accessible through the web browser on your phone or computer. The most important feature to recognize about any kind of web wallet, is that the private keys are held and managed by a trusted third party. MyEtherWallet is the most commonly used non-exchange web wallet, but it can only be used to store Ethereum and ERC-20 tokens.
Though the avenue of access to MEW is through the web, it is not strictly speaking a web wallet, though this label will suffice for the time being. The MEW site gives you the ability to create a new wallet so you can store your ETH yourself. All the data is created and stored on your CPU rather than their servers. This makes MEW a hybrid kind of web wallet and desktop wallet. Exchange Wallets: A form of Web Wallet contained within an exchange. An exchange will hold a wallet for each individual variety of cryptocurrency you hold on that exchange. Desktop Wallets: A software program downloaded onto your computer or tablet hard drive that usually holds only one kind of cryptocurrency. The Nano Wallet (Formerly Raiwallet) and Neon wallet for storage of NEO and NEP-5 tokens are notable examples of desktop wallets Phone Wallets: These are apps downloaded onto a mobile phone that function in the same manner as a desktop wallet, but actually can hold many different kinds of cryptocurrency. The Eidoo Wallet for storing Ethereum and its associated tokens and Blockchain Wallet which currently is configured to hold BTC, ETH and Bitcoin Cash, are some of the most widely used examples.
Hardware wallets — LedgeTrezoAlternatives
Hardware wallets are basically physical pathways and keys to the unique location of your crypto assets on the Blockchain. These are thought to be more secure than any variety of web wallet because the private key is stored within your own hard wallet, an actual physical device. This forcibly removes the risk your online wallet, or your exchange counter party, might be hacked in the same manner as MtGox. In hardware wallet transactions, the wallet’s API creates the transaction when a user requests a payment. An API is a set of functions that facilitates the creation of applications that interact and access features or data of an operating system. The hardware then signs the transaction, and produces a public key, which is given to the network. This means the signing keys never leave the hardware wallet. The user must both enter a personal identification number and physically press buttons on the hardware wallet in order to gain access to their Blockchain wallet address through this method, and do the same to initiate transfers.
Paper Wallets
Possibly the safest form of cryptocurrency storage in terms of avoiding hacking, Paper Wallets are an offline form of crypto storage that is free to set up, and probably the most secure way for users, from beginners to experts, to hold on to their crypto assets. To say it simply, paper wallets are an offline cold storage method of storing cryptocurrency. This includes actually printing out your public and private keys on a piece of paper, which you then store and save in a secure place. The keys are printed in the form of QR codes which you can scan in the future for all your transactions. The reason why it is so safe is that it gives complete control to you, the user. You do not need to worry about the security or condition of a piece of hardware, nor do you have to worry about hackers on the net, or any other piece of malware. You just need to take care of one piece of paper!
Real World Historical Examples of Different Wallet Types
Web Wallet: Blockchain.info Brief mechanism & Security Blockchain.info is both a cryptocurrency wallet, supporting Bitcoin, Ethereum and Bitcoin cash, and also a block explorer service. The wallet service provided by blockchain.info has both a Web Wallet, and mobile phone application wallet, both of which involve signing up with an email address, and both have downloadable private keys. Two Factor Authentication is enabled for transfers from the web and mobile wallets, as well as email confirmation (as with most withdrawals from exchanges). Phone Wallet: Eidoo The Eidoo wallet is a multi-currency mobile phone app wallet for storage of Ethereum and ERC-20 tokens. The security level is the standard phone wallet level of email registration, confirmation, password login, and 2 factor authentication used in all transfers out. You may find small volumes of different varieties of cryptocurrencies randomly turning up in your Eidoo wallet address. Certain projects have deals with individual wallets to allow for “airdrops” to take place of a particular token into the wallet, without the consent of the wallet holder. There is no need to be alarmed, and the security of the wallet is not in any way compromised by these airdrops.
Neon Wallet
The NEON wallet sets the standard for web wallets in terms of security and user-friendly functionality. This wallet is only designed for storing NEO, Gas, and NEP-5 tokens (Ontology, Deep Brain Chain, RPX etc.). As with all single-currency wallets, be forewarned, if you send the wrong cryptocurrency type to a wallet for which it is not designed, you will probably lose your tokens or coins. MyEtherWallet My Ether Wallet, often referred to as MEW, is the most widely used and highly regarded wallet for Ethereum and its related ERC-20 tokens. You can access your MEW account with a hardware wallet, or a different program. Or you can also get access by typing or copying in your private key. However, you should understand this method is the least safe way possible,and therefore is the most likely to result in a hack. Hardware: TrezoLedger Brief History Mechanism and Security A hardware wallet is a physical key to your on-chain wallet location, with the private keys contained within a secure sector of the device. Your private key never leaves your hardware wallet. This is one of the safest possible methods of access to your crypto assets. Many people feel like the hardware wallet strikes the right balance between security, peace of mind, and convenience. Paper Wallet Paper wallets can be generated at various websites, such as https://bitcoinpaperwallet.com/ and https://walletgenerator.net/. They enable wallet holders to store their private keys totally offline, in as secure a manner as is possible.
Real World Example — Poor Practices
MtGox Hack history effects and security considerations MtGox was the largest cryptocurrency exchange in the world before it was hacked in 2014. They were handling over 70% of BTC transactions before they were forced to liquidate their business. The biggest theft of cryptocurrency in history began when the private keys for the hot wallets were stolen in 2011 from a wallet.dat file, possibly by hacking, possibly by a rogue employee. Over the course of the next 3 years the hot wallets were emptied of approximately 650000 BTC. The hacker only needed wallet.dat file to access and make transfers from the hot wallet, as wallet encryption was only in operation from the time of the Bitcoin 0.4.0 release on Sept 23rd 2011. Even as the wallets were being emptied, the employees at Mt Gox were apparently oblivious to what was taking place. It seems that Mt Gox workers were interpreting these withdrawals as large transfers being made to more secure wallets. The former CEO of the exchange, Mark Karpeles, is currently on trial for embezzlement and faces up to 5 years in prison if found guilty. The Mt Gox hack precipitated the acceleration of security improvements on other exchanges, for wallets, and the architecture of bitcoin itself. As a rule of thumb, no small-to-medium scale crypto holders should use exchange wallets as a long-term storage solution. Investors and experienced traders may do this to take advantage of market fluctuations, but exchange wallets are perhaps the most prone to hacking, and storing assets on exchanges for an extended time is one of the riskiest ways to hold your assets.
In a case strikingly similar to the MtGox of 2011–2014, the operators of the BitGrail exchange “discovered” that approximately 17 million XRB ($195 million worth in early 2018) were missing. The operators of the exchange were inexplicably still accepting deposits, long after they knew about the hack. Then they proceeded to block withdrawals from non-EU users. And then they even requested a hard fork of the code to restore the funds. This would have meant the entire XRB Blockchain would have had to accept all transactions from their first “invalid” transaction that were invalid, and rollback the ledger. The BitGrailexchange attempted to open operations in May 2018 but was immediately forced to close by order of the Italian courts. BitGrail did not institute mandatory KYC (Know your customer) procedures for their clients until after the theft had been reported, and allegedly months after the hack was visible. They also did not have 2 factor authentication mandatory for withdrawals. All big, and very costly mistakes.
Case Study: Good Practice Binance, the Attempted Hack
During the 2017 bull run, China-based exchange Binance quickly rose to the status of biggest altcoin exchange in the world, boasting daily volumes that surged to over $4 billion per day in late December. Unfortunately, this success attracted the attention of some crafty hackers. These hackers purchased domain names that were confusingly similar to “binance.com”. And then they created sufficiently convincing replica websites so they could phish traders for their login information. After obtaining this vital info, the scammers created API keys to place large buy orders for VIAcoin, an obscure, low volume digital currency. Those large buy orders spiked VIA’s price. Within minutes they traded the artificially high-priced VIA for BTC. Then they immediately made withdrawal requests from the hacked BTC wallets to wallets outside of the exchange. Almost a perfect fait accompli! But, Binance’s “automating risk management system” kicked in, as it should, and all withdrawals were temporarily suspended, resulting in a foiled hacking attempt.
Software Wallets Web/Desktop/Phone/Exchange Advantages and Limitations
As we said before, it is inadvisable to store crypto assets in exchange wallets, and, to a lesser extent, Web Wallets. The specific reason we say that is because you need to deliver your private keys into the hands of another party, and rely on that website or exchange to keep your private key, and thus your assets, safe. The advantages of the less-secure exchange or web wallets, are the speed at which you can transfer assets into another currency, or into another exchange for sale or for arbitrage purposes. Despite the convenience factor, all software wallets will at some point have been connected to the internet or a network. So, you can never be 100% sure that your system has not been infected with malware, or some kind of keylogging software, that will allow a third party to record your passwords or private keys. How well the type of storage method limits your contact with such hazards is a good way to rate the security of said variety of wallet. Of all the software wallets, desktop and mobile wallets are the most secure because you download and store your own private key, preferably on a different system. By taking the responsibility of private key storage you can be sure that only one person has possession of it, and that is you! Thereby greatly increasing the security of your crypto assets. By having their assets in a desktop wallet, traders can guard their private key and enjoy the associated heightened security levels, as well keep their assets just one swift transfer away from an exchange.
Hardware Wallets Advantages and Limitations
We briefly touched on the features and operation of the two most popular hardware wallets currently on the market, the Ledger and Trezor wallets. Now it will be helpful to take a closer look into the pros and cons of the hardware wallet storage method. With hardware wallets, the private keys are stored within a protected area of the microcontroller, and they are prevented from being exported out of the device in plain text. They are fortified with state-of-the-art cryptography that makes them immune to computer viruses and malware. And much of the time, the software is open source, which allows user validation of the entire performance of the device. The advantages of a hardware wallet over the perhaps more secure paper wallet method of crypto storage is the interactive user experience, and also the fact that the private key must at some stage be downloaded in order to use the paper wallet. The main disadvantage of a hardware wallet is the time-consuming extra steps needed to transfer funds out of this mode of storage to an exchange, which could conceivably result in some traders missing out on profits. But with security being the main concern of the vast majority of holders, investors and traders too, this slight drawback is largely inconsequential in most situations.
Paper Wallets Advantages and Limitations
Paper wallets are thought by some to be the safest way to store your crypto assets, or more specifically, the best method of guarding the pathways to your assets on the Blockchain. By printing out your private key information, the route to your assets on the Blockchain is stored 100% offline (apart from the act of printing the private key out, the entire process is totally offline). This means that you will not run the risk of being infected with malware or become the victim of keylogging scams. The main drawback of using paper wallets is that you are in effect putting all your eggs in one basket, and if the physical document is destroyed, you will lose access to your crypto assets forever.
Key things to keep in mind about your Wallet Security: Recovery Phrases/Private Key Storage/2FA/Email Security
Recovery phrases are used to recover the on-chain location for your wallet with your assets for hardware wallets like ledgers and Trezors that have been lost. When you purchase a new ledger for example, you just have to set it up again by entering the recovery phrase into the display and the lost wallets will appear with your assets intact. Private key storage is of paramount importance to maintain the safety of your on-chain assets! This should be done in paper wallet form, or stored offline on a different computer, or USB device, from the one you would typically use to connect to the 2 Factor Authentication (2FA) sometimes known as “two step authentication”. This feature offers an extra security layer when withdrawing funds from cryptocurrency wallets. A specialized app, most commonly Google Authenticator, is synced up to the exchange to provide a constantly changing code. This code must be entered within a short time window to initiate transfers, or to log into an exchange, if it has also been enabled for that purpose.
You must always consider the level of fees, or the amount of Gas, that will be needed to carry out the transaction. In times of high network activity Gas prices can be quite high. In fact, in December 2017 network fees became so high that some Bitcoin transactions became absolutely unfeasible. But that was basically due to the anomalous network congestion caused by frantic trading of Bitcoin as it was skyrocketing in value. When copying wallet addresses, double check and triple check that they are correct. If you make a mistake and enter an incorrect address, it is most likely your funds will be irretrievably lost; you will never see those particular assets again. Also check that you haven’t input the address of another one of your wallets that is designed to hold a different variety of cryptocurrency. You would similarly run the very great risk of losing your funds forever. Or, at the very least, if you have sent the wrong crypto to a large exchange wallet, for example on Coinbase, maybe you could eventually get those funds back, but it would still entail a long and unenjoyable wait.
How to Monitor Funds
There are two ways to monitor you funds and your wallets. The first is by searching for individual wallet addresses on websites specifically designed to let you view all the transactions on a particular Blockchain. The other is to store a copy of your wallet contents on an application that tracks the prices of all cryptocurrencies. Blockchain.info is the block explorer for Bitcoin, and it allows you to track all wallet movements so you can view your holdings and all the historical transactions within the wallet. The Ethereum blockchain’s block explorer is called Ether scanner, and it functions in the same way. There is a rival to Ether scanner produced by the Jibrel Network, called JSearch which will be released soon. JSearch will aim to offer a more streamlined and faster search method for Ethereum blockchain transactions. There are many different kinds of block explorer for each individual crypto currency, including nanoexplorer.io for Nano (formerly Rai Blocks) and Neotracker for NEO. If you simply want to view the value of your portfolio, the Delta and Blockfolio apps allow you to easily do that. But they are not actually linked to your specific wallet address, they just show price movements and total value of the coins you want to monitor.
That’s not all! You can learn how to transfer and monitor the funds in and out of your wallet by clicking on the link.
To be continued!
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submitted by UBAI_UNIVERSITY to u/UBAI_UNIVERSITY [link] [comments]

How do I import wallet.dat into some kind of thin client?

A while I got myself a few bitcoins on an old computer, but I stopped running bitcoin-qt because it was murdering my CPU and taking ridiculous amount of diskspace.
Anyway, I want to take that wallet.dat and import it into some kind of thin client that doesn't need to store the entire blockchain locally.
What's the most reasonable way to do so? I've tried MultiBit, which sounds like a reasonable client, but it doesn't seem able to import wallet.dat in any way.
(everything OSX)
submitted by taw to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

Desktop Client Recommendation

can you recommend me any desktop clients ? So far I have tried bitcoin-core, Electrum and MultiBit. I liked Bitcoin Core, but as the blocks increase, it becomes extremely heavy. In my computer, it takes more than 10 minutes just to start, and while it is syncing I can't do anything else without freezing my computer, MultiBit uses the file from a server, so it syncs very fast, but the wallet seems to be incompatible with the wallet.dat and it doesn't seem to allow importing the private key, it only allows importing wallets generated by itself. Electrum is fast, doesn't freeze anything, it allows to import private keys, but it is taking way too long to sync, so i think it is downloading the blockchain...
So, I would like a wallet with these characteristics:
thank you all :)
submitted by yurifw to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

Start Here for Much Wallet WOW!

Copied from /dogecoin

https://www.reddit.com/dogecoin/comments/4yts6h/start_here_for_much_wallet_wow/
So there I was, having a quiet Sundy arvo bludge, as you do, when 42points turned up on Facebook and asked me to write a new sticky post for /dogecoin. Why would he do this, when he should be having a bludge himself, I hear you ask? Well, seems he was doing exactly that, and wanted to fob off the work he’s too slack to do himself. ;) Ah well, being a sucker for punishment, I’ll grudgingly oblige I guess.
OK, first things first.

The Clients:

Dogecoin Core 1.10.0 2015-Nov-01
Bootstrap file for Core to save some download time.
Dogecoin Core Guide Wiki
MultiDoge v0.1.7 2016-Jan-31
Android Dogecoin Wallet 2.0.8 2016-Jan-18
Android Coinomi Wallet
Java Cate 0.14 alpha 2 Multicoin wallet 2016-Feb-14
iOS Doughwallet

Do you REALLY need a client?

Wallet ELI5
UTXO ELI5
Paper Wallet Generator
Sample HTML Wallet List
Dogetipbot subreddit and website
Dogechain Wallet
Block.io Wallet
Exchanges
BTC38
Poloniex
CoinSpot
ShapeShift - Not really an exchange, rather a currency trader.

Mining

Litecoinpool
Prohashing
Zpool

Explorers

BitInfoCharts - My favourite, has charts!
chain.so
dogechain.info
/dogecoindev where the devs hang out

More Info

Dogeducation
Technical Wiki
Preev currency value calculator

EDITS:

From peoplma
I was wondering if you could add just a couple things. A link to the coinomi android wallet, it's probably the best one out there. And a sentence somewhere along the lines of "if you need help with any dogecoin software you are welcome to make a post, but PLEASE include your OS, version number of the client, and any relevant transaction IDs that you are willing to share" if you can fit that in somewhere.
Also, if you want to link to Prohashing, I'm pretty sure it's the only Scrypt mining pool that will actually pay out in doge. The others I know of pay out in litecoin or bitcoin. And it's a profit switching multipool, so gives a better return than just mining ltc/doge.
And there's these two wiki articles I thought would be helpful to link /dogecoin/wiki/technical for those technically minded newbies or intermediate users who want to dig a little deeper. And maybe a link to /dogecoin/wiki/dogecoincoreguide next to the link for dogecoin core.
From pts2002
Finally a proper sticky post! Here's some other stuff you could add:
zpool.ca mining pool - You can get paid in pretty much any coin, and you can mine in multiple algos (currently mining lyra2v2 with my GPU). Doing about 500Ð/day
shapeshift.io exchange - My favourite exchange, quick and easy. No registration required!
Also, you should add some blockchain explorers!
chain.so - Support for bitcoin, litecoin and doge.
dogechain.info - Official blockchain explorer. Includes a wallet (already mentioned). Live update currently not working (?)
EDIT: Here's another thing I found!
preev.com currency value calculator - Easy way to check the value of your dogecoins (or bitcoins, or litecoins, or peercoins)!
submitted by Fulvio55 to dogeducation [link] [comments]

Recovery BTC Wallet crack wallet.dat without bitcoin core Eureka! Long lost Bitcoin Wallet? Bitcoin How to import your old wallet into new one ... Install, Backup And Restore A Bitcoin Wallet. Or, Almost ...

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