What are cryptocurrency Private Keys?

This article was first published on Metal Blog

Let’s start by saying we will never ask you for your private keys. We’ll explain what this means later on, but we just wanted to say right at the beginning that we will never ask you for your private keys.

Okay, with that out of the way, let’s get down to business.

It can be a little hard to comprehend just how important – and just how private – your private key should be in cryptocurrency. It’s not like the key to your house, and it’s not like the password to your account; it’s more like a series of letters and numbers that allows someone to take all of your cryptocurrency instantly from anywhere in the world.

Sounds scary, right? For the newcomer to cryptocurrency, this can be a nerve-wracking concept. That’s why people throughout this industry repeat themselves over and over again: never share your private keys with anyone, ever.

So what’s the point of a private key? Do you have one? If so, how can you see it? To understand this, let’s break this down to its basics and build from there.

The point of a private key

Let’s say you have your cryptocurrency stored in a software wallet on your phone, like Proton Wallet. This is a fun and easy-to-use way to swap, stake, and send your cryptocurrency all while on the go. One day, you take the case off your phone to clean the screen. The phone slips from your hand, hits the ground at just the right angle, and you hear a sickening crack. The phone is shattered, won’t turn on, and your cryptocurrency is gone.

Or is it? If you saved your private key, your cryptocurrency is perfectly safe. Just get a new phone, download Proton Wallet, and input your private key into the ...

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Metal Blog

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