Without a trusted address that only you have access to, you won’t be able to receive Bitcoin securely. And while you can store your Bitcoin on an exchange, you should have a personal wallet for larger sums.
That’s why, for instance, crypto enthusiasts worldwide celebrate #ProofOfKeys day, an annual event on January 3 where everyone is encouraged to withdraw their funds from the exchange to a wallet they control, to bring to light the fact that exchanges often aren’t so trustworthy or reliable. Since Bitcoin is a relatively new invention, regulation surrounding exchanges is still developing, and the remaining gaps threaten customers’ security.
A software wallet uses a program that lets you store cryptocurrencies on its protocol. Because a hardware wallet is a physical object, it doesn’t have to remain connected to the internet, it’s pretty difficult to hack into it.
Now that we’ve explored the advantages (and disadvantages) of Bitcoin wallets, let’s look at the best options available in Canada. The main difference between these two wallets is that the NATO S does not feature Bluetooth capability.
Trevor is one of Ledger’s main competitors, and its wallets are also supported in Canada. While the wallet is set up via USB connection, the device can be unlocked without this connection, as PIN entry and passphrases can be entered on the Model T. Although the price might be a deterrent, the model is one of the most comprehensive available, with extensive security features.
Similar to Ledger, Trevor has a cheaper, older wallet which still works well if you don’t want to break the bank. The Trevor One shares many of its features with the Model T, but it needs to be connected to another device to work and its screen is a primitively monochromatic.
Keep Key is a far cheaper alternative to the bigger brands like Ledger and Trevor. Keep Key works on PC, Mac, Linux, and Android, so you shouldn’t need to worry about device compatibility.
The UK-based wallet is available in Canada and is completely free, although outgoing transactions are charged according to a variable rate. This rate depends on the cryptocurrencies involved and is used to pay miners who verify transactions by adding it to the blockchain.
This is a good option if you want to buy and hold Bitcoin offline, but don’t want to use a hardware wallet. It won’t work for crypto trading, but for long term cold storage it’s considered one of the best options.
And remember: just because you store your Bitcoin in a wallet, it doesn’t mean that the price won’t fluctuate. A bitcoin wallet is a type of software that lets you store your cryptocurrency online, or in the case of a hardware wallet, offline in a physical storage unit.
When trading bitcoin, one of the first decisions you’ll need to make is using a hardware or software bitcoin wallet. The latter is ideal for storing small amounts of bitcoin, as it lives online and is convenient to use.
To make things easier, I’ve broken the list into two categories: Beginners and Experienced Traders. If you prefer a hardware wallet, I’ve included a couple of reasonably priced options.
Armory offers free bitcoin cold storage, which means that your bitcoin wallet is stored in a computer that is never connected to the internet. Armory is limited to bitcoin storage only, so if you’re trading other cryptocurrencies, it won’t be your best option.
Trevor One is a more affordable but slightly less functional version of Tremors flagship cold wallet, the Model T. For $69.99, you still get a highly secure wallet, but it must be connected to an external device to work. According to Trevor, you can easily backup the data on the One in case of loss or theft.
Cold wallet Secure storage Open-source software Connectivity to a Windows, macOS, or Linux device Ledger has a top of the line cold wallet, called the NATO X, featured below.
Cold wallet Safe and secure storage Well-tested with over 1MM users Lacks Bluetooth connectivity of NATO X The following bitcoin wallets are well suited for experienced traders or anyone who requires higher crypto storage volumes.
The NATO X is a modern, sleek device resembling a USB drive that allows you to securely manage several coins, including Bitcoin, Ethereum, and ERC20. It has a lower price point than its main competitor, the Tenor Model T.
If you’re looking for cold storage without the expense of the higher priced Ledger and Trevor, Keep Key is a solid alternative. It features its own exchange and is highly resilient to viruses because it doesn’t have its own operating system.
It is compatible across Android, Linux, PC, and Mac systems, but it is limited in the number of cryptocurrencies it supports. Without any online storage, your bitcoin is highly secure; meanwhile, you avoid the costs of purchasing a hardware wallet.
Remember that cryptocurrency is highly speculative and cannot be considered a traditional investment, like a stock or bond. With a career as a Financial Analyst and over a decade writing about personal finance, Tom has the knowledge to help you get control of your money and make it work for you.
If you want to buy bitcoin or any other digital currency, you’ll need to choose a wallet where you can securely store your coins or tokens. But if you’re just starting out, choosing a wallet and learning how to use it can feel complicated and overwhelming.
That’s why we’ve put together this beginner’s guide to cryptocurrency wallets. Disclaimer: This information should not be interpreted as an endorsement of cryptocurrency or any specific provider, service or offering.
BTC, ETH, ARP, BCH, LTC, LINK, XML, HT, USDA, DASH & 1280+ more TREVOR hardware wallet is a secure way to keep your cryptocurrency safe from hackers and malware.
BTC, ETH, ARP, USDA, BCH, LTC, EOS, ATZ, LINK, XML & 1380+ more A NFC cryptocurrency wallet card with a mobile app that supports major cryptos and select ERC20 tokens.
BTC, ETH, USDA, LINK, BNB, UNI, WTC, ATZ, OK, LEO & 30+ more Take advantage of Zeno's unique self-custody system to buy, sell and spend and earn cryptocurrency in your own wallet.
BTC, BCH, ARP, ETH, LTC, ZEN, ICE, JOY, PR, LEO & 30+ more A mobile hardware wallet for iPhone or Android designed to offer wireless Bluetooth transactions and cold storage.
BTC, ETH, DASH, ETC, BCH, REP, LTC, DEC, RISK, DGE, ICN, GNT, GO, DGD, CAP, CVC, STX, POE, MCI, TUM, CFI, ART, PAY & 55+ more A relatively new wallet on the market, AXX offers multi-platform support for seven different cryptocurrency assets.
BTC, BCH, BTG, LTC, DASH, DOGE, ETC, ETH, ERC20, NEM, NMC, DEC, EXP, BBQ Designed by GRAY, the Corazón is a luxury Trevor Model T hardware wallet with an aerospace-grade titanium finish.
BTC, BCH, BTG, LTC, ETH, DASH, ETC, VTC, FUN, DCR, EOS, ANT, GO, OMG, BAT & 15+ more Founded in July 2016, this free desktop wallet offers support for multiple cryptocurrencies including live chart tracking features.
BTC, ETH, ETC, BTG, DOGE, LTC, LCC, BCH, DASH, NBT, PPC, RED, MONA, GB, DEC, NEWS, AVG, VTC, BTA, ABN & 100+ more A multi-coin crypto wallet designed for storing multiple cryptocurrencies on your mobile, including bitcoin and Ethereum.
Plectrum's desktop wallet is designed to efficiently store your BTC on multi-platforms like Windows, Mac and Linux. Bread, previously known as Bread wallet, is a free digital wallet app focused on protecting your personal privacy during BTC storage.
Home to over 15 million wallets, Blockchain delivers an online solution for safe ETH and BTC storage. Founded in 2008, Mycelium is a well-established player in the digital currency industry, evolving to meet the growing needs of bitcoin users.
BTC, BCH, ETH, LTC, MR, ARP, DASH, REP, WINGS, IND, BZC, FTC MyEtherWallet (MEW) is a free, open source tool for creating wallets that work with the Ethereum platform.
A popular Ethereum wallet, Metalmark provides private key protection for sending and storing Ether. Store, send and receive LTC via the open source, web-based Literally wallet.
Gateau’s web wallet offers multi-currency support, in-built exchange features and market analytics. Toast sets out to offer a multi-platform Ripple wallet that’s “simple enough for your grandma but safe enough for a Swiss banker”.
BTC, BCH, BULK, BCN, ETH, DOGE, DASH, EMC, LTC, MR, EMC, VTC, PPC, XPM, RED, ARP, SPY, DEC Cryptonator wallet allows you to store multiple world-leading cryptocurrencies online.
Conveniently send, receive and trade XML on multiple devices with the Stargazer Stellar wallet. Lobster provides a mobile-friendly option for iOS and Android crypto users looking to store XML.
A Stellar web wallet allowing you to earn inflationary XML every week based on your account balance. Formerly known as Viewable, this open-source web wallet gives you control of your private keys for extra security when storing NATO.
Offering support for nearly 500 cryptocurrencies, this HD mobile wallet is user-friendly and gives you full control of your private keys. A lightweight way to store and manage your AVG holdings using Simple Payment Verification (SPV) technology.
Electron Cash wallet allows you to store BCH on your desktop and Android with multisite functionality security. If you don’t want to use the GUI or your computer to run a full node when storing and managing IOTA, the Nostalgia Light wallet is worth considering.
Buy and sell OEM directly on your desktop via NEM NATO wallet's Chantilly instant exchange feature. Created by Hash Engineering, this Android app is explicitly for managing DASH assets with the option of offline payments via Bluetooth.
Almoner is a popular online wallet for those who don’t want to use their computer to run a full node when storing and managing MR. If you wish to manage your MR on the go with private data security features, the Monera Android app is worth considering.
The official desktop and mobile wallet for TUM, Tum Core enables you to send, receive and store your funds with support for smart contracts. This official Tum web wallet places a large emphasis on simplicity, presenting a basic user interface for TUM fund management.
An HD mobile wallet for buying and selling multiple cryptocurrencies through a built-in peer-to-peer exchange feature. Formerly known as Viewable, this open-source web wallet gives you control of your private keys for extra security when storing ORB.
If you're a developer or technically advanced user wanting to set up a full network node, this List wallet is worth considering. A user-friendly way to store and manage your ASK tokens with access to a blockchain explorer and other features.
An open source cross-platform wallet designed for simple storage and management of NEO, GAS and other NEP5 tokens. A user-friendly online wallet for storing and managing your NEO and GAS holdings with private key encryption.
A cryptocurrency wallet is a software program that allows you to store, send and receive digital currencies. This is a long sequence of letters and numbers that forms the wallet address.
With this, people can control the funds tied to that wallet’s address. However, it’s worth noting that not all wallets give you sole ownership of your private key, which essentially means that you don’t have full control over your coins.
As well as storing your public and private keys, crypto wallets interface with the blockchains of various currencies so that you can check your balance and send and receive funds. Your wallet address keeps a record of all your transactions, and therefore also tracks your crypto balance.
By following the chain all the way to the present day, a wallet can figure out how many coins you have. Once this transaction has been verified and added to the blockchain, the ledger records that the amount of bitcoin at Alice’s wallet address has decreased by 0.001 and that the amount of bitcoin at Bob’s wallet address has increased by 0.001 BTC.
Risk of computer viruses and malware, inconvenient if you want to manage your crypto on the go Easy to set up and maintain, most are available for Windows, Linux and Mac, although some may be limited to a particular operating system.
Many cryptocurrencies offer a desktop wallet specifically designed for their coin. Desktop wallets provide a relatively high level of security since they’re only accessible from the machine on which they’re installed.
The biggest disadvantage is that they also rely on you to keep your computer secure and free of malware, so antivirus and anti-malware software, a strong firewall and a common-sense approach to security are required to keep your coins safe. Most desktop wallets will provide you with a long string of words upon installation.
Very easy to use, convenient, wide range of options available, free to download They also make it simpler to access your coins on the go and use cryptocurrency as part of everyday life.
Easy to use, convenient, quick access from any computer, usually free to use Online wallets (most often provided by exchanges, but sometimes offered by third parties) are connected to the Internet and are generally the easiest to set up and use.
Most only require an email address and a password to create an account, and web wallets are usually designed to provide a simple and straightforward user experience. The biggest advantages to online wallets are that they can’t be lost and that they’re accessible from any computer with an Internet connection.
As secure as they are, paper wallets are also complex and quite confusing for beginners. They’re typically only used by advanced users who want a high level of security.
To transfer money to a paper wallet, you use a software wallet (any of the above mentioned) to send money to the public key printed on the sheet of paper. Nothing on the Internet is 100% secure, so funds kept in a hot wallet are always at a slight risk of theft or loss from software bugs or hackers.
A wallet is cold when it’s safely offline and can’t be deliberately or accidentally compromised over the Internet. This is a quick and convenient solution, providing fast access to your crypto whenever you need it, but it’s not recommended for a couple of reasons.
You don’t control the private key to your exchange wallet. Instead, it’s controlled by the exchange, which effectively means that you don’t fully own your cryptocurrency.
For example, if security is your number-one priority, you’ll probably want to compare hardware wallets. But if your main goal is being able to quickly and conveniently access your coins, a mobile or web wallet may be your preferred choice.
Sending, receiving and storing cryptocurrency can be complicated and confusing, particularly for beginners. It’s essential that any wallet you choose suits your tech knowledge and level of crypto experience.
So while crypto novices might focus on finding a wallet that is simple to set up and use, experienced holders might look for more advanced features, for example an in- wallet exchange and multi signature transactions. Find out what security features the wallet includes, such as 2-factor authentication and multisite functionality.
Check what other features the wallet includes, such as the ability to exchange between currencies within your wallet or providing easy access to live fiat exchange rates or other market information. Consider the upfront price and shipping costs when making your decision.
Some wallets will also charge a fee for every transaction you do, so check the fine print to find out whether this is the case. Check out a range of independent online reviews to gauge how other users rate the wallet and whether they would recommend it.
Please note that the exact process will vary depending on the type and brand of wallet you choose. For example, hardware wallet users will typically need to connect their wallet device, enter a PIN or password and manually verify the transaction on the device itself.
Some currencies may allow you to earn interest on your coins by “staking” your holdings (you may need to follow specific instructions in your wallet to do this). Other than that, the main thing you need to focus on is maintaining a high level of security at all times.
Thoroughly research the security features and development team behind a range of wallets before making your final decision. This is a simple security feature available on an increasing number of wallets.
It’s simple to use and provides an extra layer of protection for your wallet. Make sure all usernames, Pins and passwords related to your crypto wallet are as strong as possible.
Though this means it’ll take a little longer to send funds, you may find that the extra peace of mind is well worth the hassle. Make sure your PC, laptop, smartphone or tablet has the latest antivirus and anti-malware software installed.
Make sure to also set up a secure firewall on your computer and that you never install software from companies you don’t trust. Used by the most secure and trustworthy wallets, 2-factor authentication requires a regular username and password combination and another authentication method. This is often a PIN code that is sent to your smartphone as an SMS, may expire after a set amount of time and is different every time you log in.
Some wallets also require the use of a secondary app installed on your smartphone that generates these PIN codes for you, again adding another layer of security. Take care to also update your wallet software regularly so that you always have the latest security upgrades and protections installed.
Ensure that you have a wallet backup stored in a safe place, so you can recover your crypto funds if something goes wrong, for example if you lose your smartphone. When sending or receiving funds, make sure you’re using the correct wallet address.
Also check whether the wallet you choose allows you to retain full control of your private keys, or whether you’ll have to surrender ownership to a third party such as an exchange. Keep a backup of your cryptocurrency private keys and recovery seeds in a highly durable steel case.
A premium backup solution designed to keep your cryptocurrency safe. Review: Billfold & CRYPTOGRAM recovery seed phrase backup devices There’s no such thing as a one-size-fits-all best cryptocurrency wallet ”.
The key thing to remember is to do your research and compare a range of wallets. Start with our range of crypto wallet reviews to get an idea of what’s available and the key features you need to consider.
While most wallets aren’t linked to your identity, cryptocurrency transactions are stored permanently on the blockchain and could potentially be traced back to you. If anonymity is important to you, you may want to consider transacting with a privacy-focused coin such as Monera.
Many wallets don’t charge any fees but some do, so check the fine print closely. Keep in mind that if you choose a hardware wallet, you’ll need to pay money upfront to buy it.
You should also be aware that sending a cryptocurrency transaction from your wallet usually attracts a small network fee, which varies depending on the currency being sent. This fee is not charged or received by the wallet provider and instead applies to all transactions that take place on a coin’s network.
Check the wallet provider’s list of supported coins and tokens for more information. There’s no simple answer to this question as the right wallet for you depends on your personal needs.
Can I send bitcoin to an Ethereum wallet address or vice versa? Some wallets require you to run a full node, which means you’ll need to download the entire blockchain to your computer.
You should also verify the nature of any product or service (including its legal status and relevant regulatory requirements) and consult the relevant Regulators' websites before making any decision. Disclosure: At the time of writing, the author holds ADA, ICE, IOTA and XML.