Hardware wallets for cryptocurrency: What to choose?


Instead of being in constant fear of losing your money due to the high probability of wallet breaking, it is much more convenient to store coins on USB drives - hardware wallets, the level of protection of which allows owners to be confident in their safety.

Cryptocurrency hardware wallet, in contrast to the assets stored in it, is tangible. Most of them have operating systems, easy-to-use interfaces and international language support. The most important distinctive feature of hardware wallets from other storage options is the 100% security of cryptocurrencies and the lack of unauthorized access by unscrupulous market participants.

Browse popular hardware wallets

All hardware wallets are functioning with one goal - to protect the funds of their owners from hacking and theft. The main differences are traced in the price, a variety of supported cryptocurrencies and additional options. This review will help you better understand which wallet is most suitable for you.

Ledger nano s

Аппаратные кошельки для криптовалют: Какой выбрать?

Ledger Nano S is one of the most popular hardware wallets. It is easy to use and has an incredibly high degree of protection against burglaries and thefts. Ledger Nano S supports more than 30 cryptocurrencies. Management is carried out using two buttons.

The wallet is protected by a chip similar to those used in passports and credit cards.

Ledger Nano S is distinguished not only by its reliability, but also by its availability. Today, its price is a little over $ 100 and it still remains the cheapest hardware wallet with an OLED display. It should be borne in mind that buying a wallet from intermediaries, the price of the device often doubles or even triples, so to avoid a huge mark-up, the output will be buying on the manufacturer's official website.

Pros:

  • support a large number of cryptocurrency;
  • the ability to integrate with a variety of software wallets;
  • availability of OLED-display;
  • One of the most affordable hardware wallets with an OLED display.

Minuses:

There are no minuses as such, but there are difficulties in using it. On forums, there are often issues related to the operation of the device (about updating the firmware, recovering coins if the wallet is lost or damaged, changing the PIN code, additional protection).

Trezor

Аппаратные кошельки для криптовалют: Какой выбрать?

Trezor in translation from the Czech “repository” is a hardware wallet that guarantees protection of cryptocurrency against hackers and malware.

The device is a USB-drive operating on the principle of zero trust. During the work, he uses several levels of protection, thus ensuring the security of transactions, even when working with a compromised or vulnerable computer.

Pros:

  • high level of protection;
  • multicurrency wallet;
  • easy to manage interface.

Minuses:

  • limited capabilities (the device must be connected to a computer, unlike mobile or paper wallets, which can be used on the go).
  • relatively high price (at the time of this writing, the Trezor One model is valid on the official website).

KeepKey

Аппаратные кошельки для криптовалют: Какой выбрать?

KeepKey is another noteworthy cryptocurrency hardware wallet. The company uses advanced technology, giving its owners the opportunity to keep their savings in a safe and secure place. The device can be compared with a miniature computer, specially designed for storing private keys.

This hardware wallet is slightly heavier, and more than twice as large as Ledger Nano S and Trezor. The principle of operation is similar to competitors. KeepKey integrates the wallet software into a computer, generating private keys and signing transactions.

KeepKey supports Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, Litecoin, Dogecoin, Dash, Bitcoin Gold and ERC-20 standard tokens.

KeepKey is considered one of the most reliable HD wallets on the market.

The recent price reduction by KeepKey makes it more affordable for purchase.

The device can be purchased directly on the official website of the company or through intermediaries. When released in 2015, the price of the device was more than $ 200, but since then its cost has decreased significantly and today is $ 129. Despite this, KeepKey is still a more expensive option than the same Ledger Nano S.

Pros:

  • high-quality security standards practically do not allow hackers or viruses to get to the private keys;
  • offers the same security features as the more well-known products, such as Trezor;
  • OLED display simplifies the process of using the device;
  • provides access to the world's leading cryptocurrencies;
  • relatively low price.

Minuses:

  • no web wallet function (users must integrate software such as Electrum or MultiBit).

Bitbox

Аппаратные кошельки для криптовалют: Какой выбрать?

Digital Bitbox is a hardware wallet created by the Swiss company Shift Devices AG.

The wallet comes with its own software, thereby reducing the risk of attacks in the browser. Users use the device offline, the presence of a microSD card simplifies the process of transferring funds between wallets.

Digital Bitbox supports BTC, LTC and Ethereum tokens (ETH, ETC and ERC 20), with plans to add support for more coins in the future.

Pros:

  • proprietary software that allows you to avoid security threats in the browser;
  • thanks to the bulletproof case, the device is portable and durable;
  • the private key is stored on a special chip that cannot be physically extracted;
  • Digital Bitbox code, including firmware, desktop and mobile applications, is open source;
  • minimalist design so as not to attract too much attention - simplicity is part of the security of Digital Bitbox;
  • "Swiss ideals".

The Digital Bitbox site advertises “Swiss ideals,” which include quality, privacy and the absence of backdoors.

Digital Bitbox for € 59 plus € 19 for FedEx Priority Express delivery worldwide. Depending on the location, there may be additional costs in the form of payment of import duties and VAT.

Digital Bitbox is a standalone solution that provides protection due to the backup and recovery function using a microSD card. The built-in Digital Bitbox software client allows owners to avoid security risks when working in a browser.

Bitstash

Аппаратные кошельки для криптовалют: Какой выбрать?

The BitStash storage solution is aimed at a wide audience of consumers, offering at the same time three storage methods. Each of them is designed for different purposes: cold storage, hardware wallet and mobile wallet.

BitStash consists of a physical device that performs the functions of safe storage of coins. The mobile wallet effectively fights mobile malware through global two-factor authentication by introducing captcha.

BitStash has a full-featured user interface that allows you to check, send and receive payments in a specially designed client.

Pros:

  • in addition to the basic PIN and Captcha procedures, BitStash has a built-in self-destruct feature (for example, the device can be programmed to deactivate after three unsuccessful password attempts)
  • BitStash allows you to make backups on one or more USB devices with LUKS support and can be restored using sid-phrases.

The cost of the package BitStash - $ 159.

Conclusion

To date, there has not been a single case of theft or loss of cryptocurrency from a hardware wallet. Even in case of damage to the device, the user can easily restore its contents by typing in a sid-phrase.

In order to protect the savings of their owners, all of the above wallets offer:

  • The high level of security achieved due to the possibility of autonomous storage.
  • PIN code. This four-digit password is one of the top security recommendations.
  • Sid-phrase. If the device is lost, access to coins can be restored by entering a phrase of 24 or 12 words.
  • Code phrase. Provide an additional option - to enter additional text to the CED phrase.

But to keep your digital assets safe, remember:

  1. When setting up the device, follow the instructions clearly. Wallet is 100% secure. But the safest wallet in the world is useless if it is not properly configured.
  2. Buy hardware wallets only from the manufacturer or authorized dealer, as the purchase of a used wallet puts you at risk of hacking and theft.
  3. Do not disclose your personal data. Under no circumstances disclose the PIN of your hardware wallet and your private keys.
  4. Do not lose recovery phrases. It will come in handy for you to gain access to crypto coins, in case your wallet is lost or stolen. Better yet, make a few copies. So, in case of loss of one of them, you will always have a stock.

A hardware wallet will help keep your digital currency safe. And although the initial cost of $ 100 or more can become a stumbling block, but by spending them on the purchase of an autonomous device, as a result, the owner will be able to get a lot more.

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