Crypto security is of paramount importance to keep you and your crypto safe. Follow 10 best practices to keep your crypto safe.

What is crypto security?

Crypto security is a set of best practices you can follow to keep your crypto safe.

It includes keeping your secret recovery phrase and private keys safe and offline, and never sharing them with anyone.

Regular online security is also a part of keeping your crypto safe. Use 2FA on any accounts that allow it, and make sure you follow good password practices.

Why is learning about security important?

The most important thing to learn about crypto and web3 is how to keep your money safe. 

Unfortunately, there are a lot of scammers in crypto, and they’re always coming up with new and ingenious ways to con you out of your money. 

From obvious scams like phishing for your secret recovery phrase or private keys, to more complex scams like Ponzi schemes and rug pulls, you need to be careful what you do with both your information and your cash. 

So before you invest, learn how to keep your funds safe!

10 tips to stay safe in crypto and web3

1. Write down your wallet’s secret recovery phrase, and don’t share it with anyone. 

One of the biggest dangers in crypto is losing access to your wallet. This can happen if you haven’t written down your secret recovery phrase.

Anything can happen to the device you keep your wallet on – it can get lost ro stolen, or crash, or you can trip on your cat and spill the glass of water you’re carrying all over it.

Ensure you never lose access to your wallet and your crypto by writing down your secret recovery phrase at least twice. Keep the copies in separate safe places offline. 

And then never share it with anyone.

There is no valid reason anyone, including a company or platform or support team, would ever need to know your secret recovery phrase. The only reason anyone would ask for your secret recovery phrase or private keys is to steal your crypto. 

If you share your secret recovery phrase or private keys, including entering them into any form or platform (other than another legitimate wallet), it’s likely your crypto will get stolen. 

2. Store large amounts of crypto in a hardware wallet.

A good rule of thumb is to only store the same amount of crypto in your software wallet as you would cash in your physical wallet.

If your crypto is worth more than an amount of cash you would feel comfortable carrying in your back pocket, you should store it in a hardware wallet.

3. Only download software from official sources.

Make sure to only download software, especially wallets, from the platform’s official website.  

When you’re downloading apps from the Apple App Store or Google Play Store, read the reviews and check the developer information to make sure you’re downloading the official version.

Same if you’re downloading a browser extension from the Chrome Web Store. 

Fake apps and extensions can steal your money. 

4. Only get support from official channels. 

If you need help, make sure you contact the platform directly through official channels. Fake support teams can con you into revealing information that — you got it — will help them steal your money. 

Don’t trust anyone who reaches out to you first, and don’t fill out any online forms (this is a common scam).

Never share your seed phrase or private keys with anyone you don’t want accessing your funds.

Many people have lost funds by giving personal information to scammers who pretend to be representatives from platforms you know and trust. 

5. Create unique passwords and store them in a password manager.

Use strong and unique passwords for all your accounts. Password managers like LastPass or 1Password can make it easier to generate and store strong passwords. 

6. Keep your crypto safe by protecting your computer with a firewall and antivirus software.

If you’re using a laptop or desktop computer, make sure you protect your device with a firewall and antivirus software.

Remember that this alone won’t guarantee a clean system. You still need to follow safe browsing and downloading habits.

7. Enable 2FA (two-factor authentication) whenever possible.

If you have the option to secure an account with 2FA, do it. Use an app like Google Authenticator or Authy, or a hardware authenticator like YubiKey. 

Avoid using SMS 2FA because of the risk of SIM-swapping.

Well-known platforms are often spoofed in scam emails and text messages. Be very careful of clicking on links, especially in unsolicited messages. Only click on links and download files from sources that you trust 100%.

9. Use legitimate operating systems and software.

Never download pirated or cracked software. Pirated software is often riddled with malware, and it isn’t worth saving money on software if it means you lose all your crypto. 

10. If it seems too good to be true, run in the other direction.

Unfortunately there are a lot of scams in crypto. Scammers are really good at making it seem like you are getting an amazing deal. If you are super excited about the amount of guaranteed money you will make, do yourself a favour and make sure you’re not being scammed.

If you send a stranger (even one pretending to be a celebrity) crypto with the hopes of getting more crypto back, the most likely outcome is that you will never see your funds again.

Find out more about crypto scams here: What are some types of crypto scams?