Nowadays, pretty much everyone holds some kind of cryptocurrency. Just like money, you need to store it somewhere safe. In this article, we wanted to help you figure out the best way to safely buy and store cryptocurrency (Bitcoin, Litecoin, Ethereum, Monero, XRP, Ravencoin, IOTA, Internxt…).
TL;DR. Buy crypto from an exchange or directly from the project’s website if possible. Never store crypto in an exchange. Store crypto in a digital or hardware wallet.
A cryptocurrency exchange is essentially a place where you can buy cryptocurrency. There are plenty of them, and in most of them, you can buy crypto directly with your credit card. The most popular exchanges are Coinbase and Binance. In these two, you will find the most popular cryptos. If you’re trying to find smaller cryptocurrencies, you can check Bittrex, Poloniex, LAToken or KuCoin. Depending on what digital asset you’re considering to buy, you’ll find it in one exchange or another. For instance, Internxt is currently available on LAToken. The bigger Internxt gets, the higher the chance it gets listed on a more popular exchange. Additionally, some cryptocurrencies allow you to buy them directly from their website, without the need for an exchange (all the exchange hassle is handled in the backend for you). This is very convenient, as you can buy crypto with your credit card without needing to sign up anywhere. The crypto gets sent directly to your wallet address, without having to go through an exchange. If available, this is the most convenient and safest way to buy cryptocurrency (also available for Internxt). We do not recommend you to store your crypto in an exchange. Doesn’t matter how large it is. Binance got hacked a few days ago, and hackers took over $40M from users cryptocurrencies stored in the exchange. You want to store your crypto yourself. Exchanges get hacked far too often. If you need to use an exchange, use it solely to buy cryptocurrency. Not to store it.
Not your keys, not your money.
There are three popular ways to store cryptocurrency. Check with which wallets your crypto is compatible. Not all wallets accept all cryptocurrencies. Internxt is compatible with all wallets mentioned here.
A paper wallet is essentially a method of storing cryptocurrency by generating and storing your wallet’s private key (your password) in a piece of paper. This can be generated using tools such as MyCrypto. You can then access your wallet using MyCrypto too. The problem with this method is that every time you need to enter your private key. The issue with that is that if anyone ever manages to catch it, that person can essentially steal all your crypto. There are very popular ways to steal your private key, such as creating a website that looks similar to that where you need to enter your private key, making you access it, enter your password and stealing it once entered (phishing). MyCrypto now only allows you to enter your private key through their desktop app, thus removing this risk. On the other hand, someone could also hack your laptop or wherever you store your private key etc. This is generally not the best way to store crypto.
Digital wallets store your private key locally on your device, thus you don’t need to enter it each time you want to log in. The most popular are Coinbase Wallet and Trust Wallet. You can log in with touch or face id. It’s pretty convenient and safe. Here, you are the true owner of your wallet, and it’s pretty much impossible for anyone to steal these. They’d need to enter your device and use your touch / face id to be able to access your wallet. If you ever lose or change your device (eg. phone), these apps give you your private key so that you can enter it on your new device and set it up again.
These function somewhat similarly to digital wallets, but add an additional layer of security; you need an additional hardware device to access your wallet. The most popular hardware wallets are Trezor and Ledger. Here, you also hold your private key, but this doesn’t need to be entered at login. Instead, you need to enter a pin code you generate and connect a hardware device that only you hold too, to your computer. This certainly is the safest way to store your cryptocurrency.