Cryptocurrencies represent an incredibly secure way of making transactions and purchases online. But Bitcoin and its altcoin alternatives are not without risk.
Meanwhile, security experts are debating whether this year will see as many exchange hacks as 2019. Last year is on record with 12 significant breaches, which combined resulted in losses well over US$292 million.
3 steps to secure cryptocurrencies in 2021
Keeping your digital currency safe in 2021 is a matter of good digital hygiene practices. It is also a matter of using tactics and tools that mitigate the risk to your investments.
To help you get the cybersecurity ball rolling, here we detail three top strategies to keep your cryptocurrencies secure in 2021.
1. Use a high-quality Virtual Private Network
Virtual Private Networks, or VPNs, have quickly become one of the most important pieces of cybersecurity software available. Using a VPN not only shields your online activity from prying eyes, but it also ensures that data packets are fully encrypted as you send them over a private network.
The security implications of VPNs are that hackers cannot see your activity nor decrypt the information you’re sending. So private keys, log in details, and passwords are more secure. And, as a result, so too are your wallets and currencies. Choose a high-quality paid subscription over a free VPN, the latter are notorious when it comes to third-party data sales.
An added bonus of VPNs is that they make public wifi networks much safer. If you have no choice but to log in to your crypto accounts on open wifi, make sure your VPN is switched on.
2. Be clever with how you store your investments
You wouldn’t walk around in the city with the entirety of your bank account balance in your back pocket. And it’s kind of the same with cryptocurrencies. Just like the wallet in your back pocket, your online hot wallet is in regular use. Don’t keep large sums of currency in a hot wallet. Instead, move the bulk of your funds to secure cold offline storage. To be doubly safe, encrypt the hard drives in question.
Some investors prefer to break up large sums into smaller ones and spread the investment out over several wallers. Store your investments wisely to mitigate the risk of theft and to make sure if you are robbed, you don’t lose much.
3. Be aware of the current cryptocurrency scams
As we pointed out earlier, crypto scams are at an all-time high. Eager investors and traders on the hunt for the next opportunity are ideal prey to threat actors.
Paying attention to current scams making the rounds means you’re in a better standing to sort the wheat from the chaff. And when it comes to ICOs and the latest and greatest coin, there is a lot of chaff. Hot tips on social media and cold outreach emails should always be treated with caution. Do your research before sending any currency.
Although cryptocurrencies are highly secure, there is a degree of risk that shouldn’t be ignored. Taking the steps above should help keep your currencies in your wallets, where they belong, in 2021.