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10 Ways to make your Crypto holdings safe

Within the crypto industry you find a lot of opportunities but also a lot of risk. Unlike in traditional finance, in crypto, you are solely responsible for your assets. Many bad actors will try to steal from, rug, or scam you. Here are ten ways to protect yourself and your assets.

    1. Cold storage/ Hardware wallet

    These physical devices will store your wallet private keys offline and make them less susceptible to hacking. You have full control over your assets and they won't be accessible unless you directly connect the hardware device to your laptop/ computer.

    The most famous brands are: Ledger, Trezor, BitBox, KeepKey, ElliPal

    The average cost range between $50 - $150, which might seem a lot, compared to the mostly free software wallets. But the risk of loosing a meaningful percentage of your investment in a scam, is worth the money.

    2. Enable two-factor authentication (2FA)

    Adding an extra layer of security, to your accounts, is never a bad idea. Requiring an additional identifier code via email, sms or an 2FA-app will make it much more difficult for hackers to access your information and assets.

    It's not about eliminating all risks, thats impossible. It's about making it as hard as possible for scammers.

    3. Keep private keys offline

    When setting up a new wallet you will receive your private key. Keeping your private keys online or stored on your computer can expose you to bad actors, if you store them offline no-one can access them besides you. Even if your laptop or computer isn't accessible to you anymore, you will be still able to access your funds.

    Make sure to write it down on paper and store it in a safe place. If you want to be extra safe, make a copy which you put in a second location.

    4. Use a separate email for your crypto

    Hacks and compromises can happen to a lot of companies, even if they are not related to crypto.

    Make sure to setup an individual email for your crypto related topics. This will eliminate the risk of stealing your assets even if your email is compromised.

    5. Double-check sender/ receiver information

    When interacting with Crypto, Defi, etc. you have 100% responsibility for the funds. If you make a typo, your funds are gone. If you send it to the wrong blockchain, your funds are gone.

    Over 12,000 ETH have been lost, due to typos or sending to the wrong participant. When sending crypto, copy or scan the wallet information you want to send funds to.

    6. Diversify your holdings

    Using different exchanges and wallets reduces the risk of losing everything at once. Make sure to distribute your assets across several platforms.

    If one wallet is compromised or an exchange shut down, you can manage your remaining assets while trying to get the lost funds back.

    7. Have a safety routine

    The crypto industry is changing fast and you need to act accordingly. Establish yourself a safety routine which you run every 3-6 months to reduce your risk on a continuous basis.

    Your routine should include:

    • Updating relevant software to the newest standard (update wallets, browsers, etc.)
    • Backup wallets to a safe offline environment
    • Disconnect wallets from sites, dApps and platforms (if you don't use the site anymore, disconnect your wallet from it to not be expose if a hack happens)

    8. Avoid public Wifi

    Public Wifi networks are often unsecured and vulnerable to hackers. When you access your crypto wallets only use a private network or at least use a VPN. When on the road, make a personal hotspot via your phone instead of relying on public wifi.

    9. Avoid phishing scams

    Sometimes hackers try to trick you into sharing and revealing some sensitive information or even your private keys. If any participant asks anything specific information of you, make sure to verify the authenticity of it.

    Always double check all available information, never connect your wallet blindly.

    10. Test, test, test

    Before connecting to a new site, connect a test wallet with only little funds to see if the site scams you or not. Always test an application first before going all-in.

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