It’s crucial to remember your seed phrase, which is a string of random words produced by your cryptocurrency wallet when you initially set it up.
How to keep your seed phrase safe
A crypto seed phrase in the wrong hands can do damage, so it is advisable to always ensure it is safe. The following are some tips for ensuring your seed phrase is secure.
- Never share your seed with anyone else: It’s extremely important that you never reveal your recovery phrase to anyone. Why? Because if someone else finds out your recovery phrase, they will be able to access — and therefore control — your crypto funds.
- Make a note of it on paper and keep it in a secure location: This is the most old-fashioned way of storing your recovery phrase, but it’s still a perfectly valid option. You can either write it down by hand or print it out — just make sure that you keep it in a safe place where only you can access it. A fireproof and waterproof safe would be ideal.
- Storing inside a Password Manager: A password manager is an encrypted digital vault that can store sensitive information like usernames, passwords, and recovery phrases. This way, you only have to remember one password (the password to your password manager) instead of dozens or hundreds of different ones. Some examples of password managers include Onepassword and Lastpass. Storing your recovery phrase in a password manager has several advantages, one of which is added security. Adding a secondary password — also known as a passphrase — users can create an even stronger and more secure backup.
If you want to be extra safe, store your recovery phrase in multiple locations. That way, even if one backup gets destroyed, you’ll still have another one intact.
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What happens if you lose a seed phrase?
Losing a seed phrase is really the worst-case scenario for a cryptocurrency owner. One cannot recover a wallet seed in case they lost or forgot it.
Giving your seed phrase to someone or entering it on a website has no practical benefit as it may lead to losing your cryptocurrency assets. Additionally, avoiding writing a recovery phrase on a refrigerator may help you protect against theft.
The best way of ensuring you don’t lose your seed phrase is by noting it down and keeping it safe. In addition, keep your seed phrase somewhere it cannot be destroyed by any element. But, can someone guess a seed phrase?
The seed phrase is generated randomly; not even the cryptocurrency user knows what word combination will be used to generate the seed phrase. Due to a seed phrase’s random characteristic, it is hard to guess a seed phrase. Something else that makes it challenging to know a seed phrase is that it consists of 12 to 24 words leaving no chances of getting all the words right.
Can a seed phrase be hacked?
In the crypto world, losing cryptocurrency is a nightmare for all cryptocurrency owners. Losing your seed phrase to an attacker means you can’t recover your crypto funds.
Being in a digital world, crypto heists are tirelessly working to reap what they didn’t plant. The worst part you would want a hacker venturing into is your cryptocurrency wallet. As seen earlier, a seed phrase is a master key to accessing a cryptocurrency wallet, which means that in the wrong hands, damage is inevitable.
However, by having a large number of words in a seed phrase, it is hard to hack it. In order to access a seed phrase, phishing is the main method used. One way scammers try to get a seed phrase is by sending emails pretending to be customer support and request for a seed phrase or private key.
Once the seed phrase lands in their hands, they can access a crypto wallet and steal everything in it. It is always advisable to keep your seed phrase private and never share it with anyone else.
Recovery phrase vs. private key
Despite being related to each other, the recovery phrase and private key are different. They both are used for securing cryptocurrency wallets.
A recovery phrase is a crypto wallet recovery password. The recovery phrase is used for the recovery of a cryptocurrency wallet in case the owner forgot their password. A private key, on the other hand, is used to point to a blockchain address hence securing transactions. A private key is used for transacting cryptocurrencies by proving ownership.
In short, a recovery phrase is a master key to all of your crypto accounts. These words are what give you access to all of the private keys stored in your original wallet. The goal is to have full control over your assets. Having this phrase allows you to still access your blockchain assets even if you lose or damage your physical hardware device. But, how does a seed recovery phrase work?
Simply put, users may access their crypto accounts from whatever wallet they choose — it’s like having a charger for every type of phone. Imagine the confusion if every wallet necessitated a different recovery phrase format. This would imply that your crypto assets would be entirely dependent on which sort of recovery phrase you’re using, leaving you no control over them.
How does a seed phrase look?
A seed phrase might be confusing and probably you might be wondering how a seed phrase looks and maybe how it is created. The seed phrase is generated by a cryptocurrency wallet and the user has no way of customizing it.
The words generated are derived from a list of 2048 words. So, how many words is a seed phrase? A seed phrase is made up of a long string consisting of a group of random words.
The words on a seed phrase are simplified so that the user can remember them, unlike if the seed phrase consisted of long numbers or special characters.
The recovery phrase consists of 12 to 24 words like energy, road or open. To avoid errors, these randomly generated words do not include pairs like “man” and “men” in the same seed phrase. Bitcoin improvement proposal-(BIP)-39 in 2013 introduced these types of phrases and established a standard for deterministic wallets. Here is an imaginary 12-word seed phrase: Cry, planet, Loose, Typical, Humankind, Toddler, Anxiety, Difficult, Happy, Never, Alternative, Remorse.
A seed phrase controls all the private keys associated with a deterministic wallet. BIP-39 proposal makes major wallets cross-compatible, allowing the users to load the recovery phrase to a new BIP-39-compatible wallet to access the funds when they are lost or if you want to switch wallets.
What is a seed phrase?
A recovery phrase (also called a seed phrase) is a group of random words generated by the cryptocurrency wallet that allows you to access the crypto stored within.
One can consider it as a wallet comparable to a password manager for crypto, and the recovery phrase to be similar to the master password. You’ll have access to all of the crypto linked with the wallet that created the phrase — even if you delete or lose it — as long as you remember your recovery phrase.
A seed phrase aids to recover a cryptocurrency wallet when a user forgets their password. The seed phrase can be said to be a crypto wallet’s master key. For example, if you had a hardware wallet and lost it or deleted your wallet from your computer, you can easily create a new wallet and use the seed phrase, which will recover your cryptocurrencies.