Keeping Your Cryptocurrency Safe As The Year Goes On

While cryptocurrency may be a  secure method of payment that has some very definite advantages over traditional payment methods, it can also become vulnerable to cyber-attacks. There have, in fact, been numerous instances where coins have been lost or stolen. In 2019, South Korea’s Bithumb exchange experienced a loss of $30 million in stolen digital tokens, and although this was one of the biggest security breaches of the year, it was not the only one. As cyber-criminals become more adept in their craft, it becomes increasingly important to apply both common sense and the required security principles needed to protect your cryptocurrency against possible attacks.

Don’t disregard the importance of physical safety

As important as it may be to secure your device with anti-virus software and firewalls, an effort also has to be made to secure the physical premises where your computer system/s and even mobile devices are being housed. A physical security breach can be detrimental, which is precisely why notes the value in organizations arming themselves with the necessary tools and strategies to keep both their assets and people safe. By putting a physical security system in place that includes intruder alarms, access control and video surveillance, and coupling it with the latest security software, you can reduce the risk of an attack significantly.

Do not leave your cryptocurrency in an exchange

You only need to take a brief look at the history of cryptocurrency to recognize why it is risky to leave your crypto reserves in an exchange. Over the past nine years, more than $1.65 billion worth of crypto assets have been stolen. On a daily basis, exchanges lose up to $2.7 million on average – a figure that is bound to increase in time. It is important to note that an exchange is not a cyber-security-based initiative. While they are proficient at running a marketplace, they cannot automatically guarantee first-class security to users. Last year it was predicted that the number of targeted assaults on exchanges will rise, making it imperative to not only seek out the most secure options but also to refrain altogether from leaving any crypto funds in the exchange.

Steer clear of phishing sites

Phishing scams have been around for many years, yet continue to wreak havoc in the world of cryptocurrency. On 21 June 2019, two Israeli brothers were arrested for a supposed phishing scam that was in operation for more than three years. During this time, the Gigi brothers are alleged to have pilfered in excess of $100 million in cryptocurrency from unsuspecting individuals. It is vital to be extremely vigilant when connecting online wallets and exchanges. Confirm that you are indeed logging into the correct address, as there are countless phony sites that imitate exchanges with the purpose of illegally obtaining your log-in information.
As the trading in cryptocurrency becomes more popular, the associated risks are bound to increase as well. Thankfully, there are a number of safety measures that can be taken to ensure that your funds remain as secure as possible.

Carolyn Coley is a blockchain reporter. She joined Smartereum after graduating from UC Berkeley in 2018.


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