HomeBlogBlogHow to Protect Your Crypto Investments: 4 Best Practices

How to Protect Your Crypto Investments: 4 Best Practices

Investors may start their crypto journey without giving much thought to how to protect their assets, but once they begin to make substantial gains, it is important to implement security measures to protect their earnings as much as possible. 

Crypto can be a tempting target for hackers, as they can access huge sums of money by breaking into people’s online accounts and clearing them out, often without being suspected or caught. 

Here are the best security measures to implement to safeguard your crypto assets, particularly as your portfolio grows. 

Protect your devices

The first place to look to improve your crypto protection is your online security, as the easiest way for someone to hack into your crypto account for business or personal use is by taking control of your phone, tablet or computer. This will give them access to your passwords, from which they can get into everything. 

Cybersecurity firm Kaspersky reported that 19.8 per cent of computers remain at risk of malware attacks, in spite of the awareness made about online security. Therefore, one in five people are leaving themselves open for their device to be hacked into, which puts their crypto portfolio at serious risk. 

Everyone should, therefore, improve their phone, computer and tablet security by installing anti-malware software. They should also encrypt the data held on to the device so that if it is stolen, nobody else can gain access to it. 

It is also worth running frequent virus scans, as well as having cybersecurity software that automatically searches for official updates of applications. 

Additionally, it should monitor application behaviour, offer additional browser protection when visiting financial websites, warn about dangerous applications, detect remote access to the computer, and offer special protection of password entry windows. 

Crypto inventors should also protect their devices by restricting access to it, automatically locking it after a short period, making sure it is password protected, and only installing apps from official sources.

Hardware wallets

A hardware wallet can also offer strong protection of crypto accounts, with these being physical devices that hold the keys needed to access their crypto currencies. 

While it does not store the assets themselves, it provides an extra layer of security to prevent people from gaining access to the crypto. This gives the investor full control of their keys, and subsequently, the access, instead of relying on third-parties. 

These ‘keys’ are in the form of a combination of letters and numbers, much like a bank pin code. Therefore, only the user should know the password, which is why it is important not to share this information with anyone else. 

Many hardware wallets can be used with multiple blockchains, which means the investor can control access to their different accounts with one hardware wallet.

Having a hardware wallet reduces the risk of the cryptocurrency being hacked because the key is kept in here, instead of on the computer. Additionally, this means the accounts are not vulnerable to computer viruses, including phishing attacks. 

Two-factor authentication 

A lot of applications require two-factor authentication these days, as it adds extra protection for the user. 

The same is true for crypto wallets, as it means the investor has to go through a second verification step before they can gain access to their account. 

So even if someone has figured out the initial password and reset it, they would still need an extra code to get in. 

Two-factor authentication normally offers a one-time code before providing access, which is typically sent to a mobile number or email address, which means the hacker would also need this to retrieve the combination, making it significantly harder for them.

Secure password management

Just like anything you want to protect on your computer or online, it is essential to have secure passwords. 

Firstly, strong, unique passwords need to be used to maximise protection, including a mix of upper- and lower-case letters, special characters, and numbers. It is sensible to avoid words that can be linked back to you, such as where you were born or favourite sports team.

Secondly, investors should have a unique password for each cryptocurrency platform, so that if the hacker gains access to one, this does not mean they will be able to clear out all their accounts. 

It is also wise to use a password manager, which securely holds your different passwords, enabling you to come up with really complex codes, as you do not have to remember them by heart.  Choosing a secure password management system means you can boost your security online, as you can have a unique combination of symbols, letters and numbers for each of your crypto accounts that are not kept on your computer for a hacker to find.

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