Cryptocurrencies - how to start your adventure with them? Before you make a transfer from your bank account, think about all your movements to be safe on the web. Every move you make leaves a trail. It's easy to leak your data, it's easy to get fooled, it's easy to lose your hard earned money. Below are tips to keep in mind when starting your adventure with cryptocurrencies, but not only then. Certainly, they will also be useful for everyday use of the Internet.
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Cryptocurrencies - safety first
Below we have collected our advice. Some of them assume a purist and uncompromising approach to the issue of anonymity and security in the network. Some of them can be treated as exaggerated precautions, and some are simply uncomfortable in everyday use. Nevertheless, it is worth getting acquainted with them and keeping them in mind not only by logging into the cryptocurrency market or by making a transfer from your portfolio, but also by using traditional electronic banking, shopping or simply by sharing in social media.
We promise, you will not find below trivial advice such as not to give anyone their passwords, pins and private keys, even if someone impersonated the employee of the stock market. We will not write to disclose your personal data to unauthorized institutions, including scans of documents. If a stranger asks you for help in paying out funds, because he is a Chinese, where crypts are banned, he's probably trying to cheat you. Just like the one who announces that if you send him 0,1 ETH he will send you 1 ETH, such a promotion.
A computer free of malicious software
Make sure that your computer is free of malicious software. There are many types of viruses and Trojans. You may not be aware of the existence of some of them on your computer. Not every virus destroys your data, blocks the screen and requests a ransom in bitcoins. Most work in a much more sophisticated way.
They can be programs that read what you type on the keyboard - including logins and passwords. These could be programs that allow a hacker to route e-mail from your account or hijack your computer for malicious purposes. Finally, they can be background applications that track your online activities.
Some of the legitimate software has such services run in the background, without your knowledge. If you did not disable the appropriate options and did not configure your computer's software, it is possible that Your activity is tracked and reportedfor example to the browser publisher, Office suite, Windows system and many, many others. Completely how Google and Facebook check what you're looking for, what you're interested in, and then show you personalized ads later, just as other programs collect data about you. your the microphone may eavesdrop on you all the time, the webcam can be used without your knowledge to take a verification "selfie", eg to set up a bank account.
If you have doubts about the security of your computer used for daily activities, and you only want to occasionally buy and securely store cryptocurrencies, consider using a separate system. Remember, in the world, cryptocurrences it You are "your bank" and you are yourself responsible for the security of your funds.
Dedicated operating system
Wanting to keep the highest level of security, use the stock exchanges and wallets only using a dedicated operating system. Of course, you do not have to buy a separate computer. All you need to do is to install a bootable version of the operating system on a fast pendrive (preferably USB 3.0). Recommended systems are Linux i Tails.
Pendrive with a dedicated, clean operating system is connected to a home PC or laptop. At startup we choose to boot from a pendrive rather than from our computer disk. On the home computer there is no trace of logging into stock exchanges or cryptocurrency portfolios. Our system is also free of viruses and spyware.
This is a very safe and recommended option. However, you should be aware that this solution is uncomfortable in everyday use. Also, be careful that you do not lose your flash drive, and in the event of a failure, we still need to have a backup of our private keys to wallets and / or other important information, such as exchange slogans.
A secure operating system will also be useful every day, not only in connection with investing in cryptocurrencies. For this reason, it is always worth it scan with a good antivirus our universal operating system and optimize his work and installed software in terms of privacy and security.
Use safe, encrypted e-mail. Ideally, it should be a separate account, dedicated only to the activity associated with cryptocurrencies. The recommended, free service is protonmail. This Swiss-based e-mail encryption message, allowing you to maintain high privacy. It has an attractive mobile application. It is quite fast and should also check in everyday use.
Services such as Gmail, read your emails and collect data about your purchases, air travel and much more. Want to see what Google knows about you? Take a look here.
If you do not want the network administrator and internet provider to see which sites you enter, connect to the internet through the VPN (Virtual Private Network) service.
VPN means a virtual private network. This service creates an encrypted communication channel between your computer and the remote server VPN. You connect to a server located in the chosen place in the world, and only this server connects to the website you want to enter. As a result, your ISP only sees that you are connected to a VPN, but you do not know what you are watching, and the website you visit receives information that the user browsing to it is located in the country where the server is located, not you . You present the server's IP address on the Internet, not your own.
VPN is a commonly used method to play content unavailable in your country on the internet, e.g. due to limited sender licenses (sports broadcasts, etc.) or avoid government censorship Internet. To some extent, it anonymizes the internet user, because its real IP address is latent.
Which VPN to choose? A great comparison of the services of different suppliers you will find here. There are many free VPN services, however the most recommended one is paid NordVPN. It is very easy to use because it has intuitively supported applications. It's fast and it's safe because it's a Panama company.
DNS can also leak information about you. Therefore, in addition to connecting to the Internet through the VPN service, it is also worth changing DNS. By default, the DNS of your internet provider is obtained. Change it to faster and more anonymous 22.214.171.124 (instructions for all platforms here).
Once you've done it, check again settings of your web browser. For obtaining information which allows websites. What data is given about you and the acceptance of what trackers it allows. Does it allow access to the microphone, camera? Does it betray your language, operating system, etc. The basic configuration can be done in Firefox. However, if you prefer Chrome… then maybe give it a try Brave.
Brave is a browser created as part of a cryptocurrency project. It has a Google Chrome engine, but by default it blocks ads and protects your privacy. However, if you like to watch advertisements on the Internet, thanks to Brave you can earn from it (tokens BAT), not a website.
If for some reason you are concerned that someone can steal your laptop, disk or pendrive with important data, private keys for wallets or an operating system dedicated to investing in cryptocurrencies, you can additionally protect yourself by encrypting your data.
The opinion of the best program for this purpose has TrueCryptwhich, apparently, the first versions, still cannot be broken even by the best secret services in the world. By the way, supposedly the creator of this program was Satoshi Nakamoto himself - the creator of bitcoin.
Do not use the same password multiple times. Each password to the stock exchange, e-mail or bank account should be unique, long and difficult, i.e. containing uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers and special characters. It is difficult to remember such passwords and what password was to which account. Memory is fallible.
The password managers come with help. One of them is recommended KeePass. It allows you to safely store information about our data for logging into the disk. No unauthorized person will copy this information because our passwords are encrypted in the program's memory.
Install the application on your phone Google Authenticator (2fa). Many cryptocurrency exchanges and once more traditional internet services, it allows cryptographic protection of your account by entering the code generated in real time by the application in the phone. It is safer than a one-time code received in an SMS message. Even knowing your password, the thief will find it very difficult to hack your account.
When adding a new account in the Google Authenticator app, remember to save the recovery code. If you lose your phone or uninstall the application, you will lose access to your trading account without this code. For more information on securing your account, please see our stock exchange guidebooks Binance, Bitbay, Coinbase, Coindeal.
Now you can buy your first cryptocurrency. The most convenient way to do it is through the Polish stock exchange Bitbay - see our guide, step by step. Do you want to buy Bitcoin anonymously? Read here ... Do you want to pay by card? Use the cheapest Coinbase exchange office.
purchased Bitcoin, ether or other cryptocurrency you can now transfer to any stock exchange and by paying it, buy another cryptocurrency or token, unavailable for PLN. The recommended stock market for this purpose is the largest and the best cryptocurrency market Binance - see our guide.
Safe storage of cryptocurrencies
Do not keep money and cryptocurrencies on the stock exchanges if you do not intend to regularly trade them. Even the largest centralized exchange it can fall at any moment. Withdraw cryptocurrencies and tokens into your own wallet, to which the owner of the access key. The best wallets are hardware portfolios, e.g. Ledger or Trezor.
If you do not want to hold cryptocurrencies, because of their large price fluctuations, and you want to secure your capital in the US dollar, you can choose stable coiny, like TUSDthat retain the value of the dollar and can be easily stored on ethereum network (ETC) tokens portfolios, e.g. MEW in combination with a physical portfolio.
The article is part of free training Cryptocurrencies - how to start and survive? A course for everyone!