Bitcoin protection means not only keeping your keys safe, but also making sure they are unique. Having your keys is essential to the concept of cryptocurrency, which is why January 3rd is an annual reminder to check that your keys are secure. Read on to find out what keys are, how to protect them, and how to prove that you own them.
The first and most important thing to know about cryptocurrency What are the keys. Bitcoin keys are basically very large numbers that appear as long strings of characters. for you public key It identifies the location of the bitcoin you own, while secret key He opens it so it can be sent elsewhere.
Getting used to this concept is as important as You only own bitcoin if you own the private keys on your own. Sharing the keys with someone else – or worse yet, trusting the exchange to keep the keys for you – means that your money can be taken at any time without warning. But using an insecure key generator makes it easier for others to find or crack your keys.
So how do you make sure your keys are unique? Ideally, you should use a hardware wallet or other method that ensures that the keys are random and Don’t touch the internet.
by Generate your keys the right wayYour assets will be safe for decades to come. But one mistake – like saving your key to a computer – can mean a complete loss of your coins. The keys must be generated offline using a cryptographically secure random number generator to ensure that they are unique.
While there are hundreds of wallets, websites, and apps that can generate valid key pairs, anything created on a device connected to the Internet can be hacked and Keys can be copied. Even the most secure keys become trivial to guessing if a computer sees them.
Create secure keys
To check your keys UniqueYou need a device that can create them in a safe and isolated environment where they will never be exposed to the Internet. Trezor was the first purpose-built device that had a screen that allowed users Check data They would sign without having to trust the host machine.
This design – which should include a reliable screen – is now known as a hardware wallet.
Hardware wallets use secure hardware random number generators to ensure that the keys they generate are unique, never existed, and cannot be guessed, even if an attacker could harness all the computing power in the world. By doing the entire transaction signing process offline, you can send transactions quickly and easily without your keys leaving your Trezor device.
The keys act as your digital identity, without the need to get too technical. While your public key is like your name, your private key is like your signature. Public keys become publicly available information once a transaction is sent, as the blockchain uses this information to determine which address owns the Bitcoin output.
Sharing information about your public keys isn’t great from a privacy perspective, since people can track your activity, but it doesn’t have a direct impact on the security of your coins since no one else knows how to create your signature.
Ideally, you shouldn’t use the same address from one public key more than once, and you can change the use of multiple accounts in the Trezor Suite to create multiple groups of addresses at once.
Just as your bank expects a valid signature before approving a mortgage, you need a private key to sign any bitcoin transaction you wish to make (only your keys cannot be forged). The private key unlocks the bitcoin associated with the public key so that it can be transferred freely.
To prevent you from losing access to your funds, when you first set up Trezor, it will provide you with a file Backup your keys known as recovery seeds. This is a list of regular words that are used to calculate all keys for all cryptocurrencies across all addresses you use on your device.
Your private keys will never be visible to you – they remain safely on your Trezor device – but if someone gains access to your recovery seed, they can use it to copy your keys. for this reason It is necessary to store the seeds of recovery in a safe place No one else can access it.
for you public key extender For any given account (the extended key generates many public key addresses simultaneously) it can be found in the Trezor Suite, under Account Details. This is useful when you want to create a “hourly only” wallet on a phone or laptop to keep track of all incoming and outgoing transactions without being able to sign them.
If someone gets hold of your account’s public key – the XPUB shown above – they can also monitor your entire account activity, which is dangerous if they know more information about you. That’s why it’s important to keep all your keys as confidential as possible, and why you should Use a new address for each incoming transaction. Using privacy tools like Tor in Trezor Suite also helps protect your identity.
Your private keys You must always remain offlineForever, from the moment it was created. The private key is only considered secure because it is a number too large for any computer to guess, but once it appears in a database, it can be copied by malicious scripts and your money can be stolen instantly.
You should also keep your account public keys (XPUBs) offline to avoid sharing information about your money with unknown people on the network. Since public keys are less important to security and are needed to create public addresses where your bitcoins are stored, you don’t have to worry too much about them, but it’s a good practice to create new accounts from time to time. It’s hard for monitors to keep track of your assets.
Do not share the keys with another person. If you have no choice but to share Trezor with someone else (and only do so with a family member you completely trust), it’s best to use the passphrase feature to create hidden wallets for each user to ensure that everyone has their own unique keys.
Instead of having to submit a transaction every time you want to verify ownership of a particular address, you can simply use Trezor Suite’s Sign & Verify feature. This allows you to sign a text message with your own keys, which someone else can verify using only the address.
To sign a message with your keys, open the account you want to verify and then select Sign and check the delete drop-down menu.
Signing the message
Enter a message of your choice and then select the address whose keys you want to verify. In the image below, we use the first address of the list to Create signature Signing the message
Proof of keys.
Trezor will confirm the message and address before revealing the signature.
You can send the letter, address and signature to anyone who asks for proof of ownership. They can use Trezor Suite or another tool to verify that the signature is valid.
If the message, address, and signature match, Trezor will ask you to confirm the message and the address being verified so you can be sure there is no interference. If the signature does not match, it will fail without having to confirm these details on the Trezor device. A successful signature will result in the following notification:
You can now verify ownership of any address generated by Trezor without having to send a transaction or reveal more information than necessary, as you only log your message with a single address. Thanks to Trezor, you can also check addresses belonging to others and make sure that the data they provided has not been altered in any way.