Sirwin
Sirwin

Crypto wallets and Operational Security


Anons first Crypto. Post #12

I've been investigating cryptocurrency and decentralized tech since the start of May 2020. This blog is an avenue of documentation and expression of my experience.


Operational Security, what steps can you take to maximize it?

I cannot stress the importance of having a clean system, a very basic bit of advice and something I undertook when I started investing in boomer stocks way back when is to completely reset your devices, get some quality anti virus software - real time protection and anti malware DYO on what will actually protect you, find a password manager that will 1. Encrypt everything 2. Update old and re used passwords 3. Tell you if your login information is being sold on the dark web. Just make sure the password manager stores and encrypts everything on your end without transmitting any data or storing anything cloud based. Then create yourself a few emails accounts use certain ones for financial use cases others for social media (if you use it) you can designate certain accounts to only be logged into certain devices etc, this will help keep spam and potential phishing down to a minimum as well as confidence in your secure accounts not being on unsavory mailing lists, this is the main point as too many companies will sell your information onto 3rd parties that then sell it on to even less savory people. This is why privacy is about to become as valuable as gold. Anyway, I suggest using ProtonMail! A Swedish based privacy focused company that will encrypt everything you send.

This is a great foundation for ensuring security when interacting online, at the end of the day the level of security is up to you, I certainly recommend 2FA when applicable, you simply have to find the balance between usability and security for example I purchased a completely separate mobile for utilizing application wallets etc as day to day use exposes mobiles, specifically smart phones to a number of privacy breaches that simply blow my risk tolerance out of the water.


Common Sense

This is quite a basic but rarely mentioned point to make when talking about securing your crypto is thinking about what you're doing before you do it. This falls in with DYOR however it goes beyond that in the sense that people out there are actively trying to trick you into giving up your hard hodl'd crypto, through various means such as phishing and scamming not to mention some less then thrilling investment 'opportunities' out there, technically it might not be a ponzi however sometimes you cannot say DO YOUR OWN RESEARCH enough.

Back to phishing and scamming though its advisable to be hesitant to connect your wallet or commit funds to anything that doesn't have multiple sources verifying its legitimacy, I see it time and time again in discords/telegrams people complaining about being scammed out of their funds, I can't stress this enough, nobody is ever going to DM you out of the blue with money that you haven't earned and are owed or actually won in a competition you entered, even then I would never connect a wallet to a twitter giveaway competitions website etc, that just screams danger.


Seed Phrases

Browser and Desktop wallets utilizes seed phrases to backup wallets, this is generally done on your computer/device meaning no information is ever sent back to for example MetaMask this means that 1. MetaMask cannot help you recover lost accounts and 2. The very minuscule chance that somebody might brute force with a phrase/password generator, you would have to do the math yourself on how hard it would be to do, this might not be the most realistic point however I felt it prudent to mention none the less.

With that said, the more realistic way of compromising your seed phrases would be be storing said phrase on a compromised hot device I.E something connected to the internet and therefore susceptible to active hacking or malicious software such as key loggers and desktop viewers, hence the value of writing something down in multiple secure locations. Secondly would be phishing attempts, crypto is still in its wild west stages and scammers are rampant, I expect this to be the case for sometime and perhaps frequency of hacks might see an increase as more people adopt cryptocurrency.  

In the early days of my brief experience in crypto I only made use of MetaMask as I was playing with ETH and ERC tokens, with the launch of GHOST main net plus finally deciding to buy some bitcoin I've found myself in need of more comprehensive storage solution. The more I put into crypto the more I valued security over ease of use/browser integration. I will exclude paper and hardware wallets from this post as I would like to devote a full post in the future. MetaMask is available as a browser extension or application wallet, it as seen a spike in popularity in 2020's alt coin season due to its integration with the decentralized exchange UniSwap. It also acts as an Ethereum browser allowing you to interact with DAPPS built upon the Ethereum blockchain as well as a storage solution for ERC collectibles. My recommendation is to utilize MetaMask as an intermediate for using their partnered platforms such as UniSwap, I see MetaMask incorporating point of sale over the next year or so, its a great place for people to start out in crypto.


Long term storage options

So where and how can you securely store crypto for a long period of time you might ask? Firstly I'd like to rule out storing anything on an exchanges wallet ESPECIALLY COINBASE, if you're currently unaware Coinbase has committed to supplying data to the authorities as well as the sale of trading trends, these two points alone should steer you so far away from Coinbase indefinitely, that just isn't our jam in crypto. 

I will explore Atomic Wallet, Crypto.com (CDC) and Mycelium wallet as possibilities, they were the ones I compared when making my decision and I do like to try keep this blog as something of a retrospective of my journey, I like to think it lends authenticity to my posts. As the word count has gotten away from me I will post as an entirely separate post tomorrow, I have a few more things I want to add to it and hopefully it helps to keep the posts readable and engaging! 


Thank for reading!

AFC

 

 

 

 

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Iwasntexpectingthispressure
Iwasntexpectingthispressure

Its very early in the morning, I found this site saying it can generate crypto for some of my posts or maybe photos, that would be very snazzy. *Everything I post is for entertainment purposes only. In fact I've never posted anything that wasn't satire.


Anons First Crypto
Anons First Crypto

I wanted to document my exploration of cryptocurrency as I'm incredibly fascinated by it, I missed out in the early days, I think the closest I came to BTC when I was younger was friends buying acid on the silk road, that enough enthralled me as to how it was possible/needed/useful/warranted. Anyway, I'm still unsure if I'll promote this anywhere, I don't really have a platform to do so on so probably not, I'm not sure if this blurb is even public or not. We shall see.

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