Most new cryptocurrency users find themselves asking the question “how do I get crypto?”

Soon afterward, they find themselves asking about an even more important aspect of owning cryptocurrency: how to store it.

Simply put, hardware wallets are the most convenient and secure way to store your cryptocurrency. You can have anywhere from ten cents or ten million USD or more worth of crypto stored on a hardware wallet.

On top of that, your private keys will stay safe even if you have the misfortune of plugging your hardware wallet into a malware-infected device or, more commonly, losing your PIN number. The benefits of hardware wallets also come with a few potential pitfalls, though.

Potential Pitfalls of the Benefits of Hardware Wallets

The biggest problem with hardware wallets is the potential for people to misuse them. In order to provide a degree of safeguarding against these errors, hardware wallets come with a user-programmable PIN number as well as what’s known as a backup passphrase or “seed.”

The seed is a string of twelve random words that can be used to access your balance should you forget your PIN. But if you lose or forget both of these, you are out of luck.

If your wallet is an Avesta wallet, however, your coins can be inherited by someone else or distributed back into the system should you lose your keys.    

The Benefits of Hardware Wallets and Keeping Your Keys Secure

It’s very important to remember your PIN and backup seed.

If you want to know what can happen when someone loses his or her PIN and seed, read this story about it happening to a real person.

Don’t print your seed or pin using a wireless printer.  Do not keep it stored on your computer or in the cloud, either. Just write it all down by hand using pen and paper.  Keep it somewhere safe.

Of course, so long as you remember your PIN, you won’t need the seed.  And if your wallet gets lost, damaged, or stolen, it’s okay. You can just get another wallet and restore your private keys (and all of your funds) using the 12-word seed.

There are many hardware wallets to choose from. There are three names that stand out from the crowd as the most popular, secure, and reliable.  These include KeepKey, Ledger, and Trezor.

When choosing a hardware wallet, make sure it supports the coins you want to store. A few of the most commonly supported cryptocurrencies include Bitcoin, Litecoin, Ethereum, DASH, and Dogecoin. The benefits of hardware wallets can only be extended to those that allow you to store the coins you own. The good news is that most companies are constantly updating their hardware wallets to support more coins.

In the end, the past several years has seen hardware wallets become more popularity as the total market cap of all cryptocurrencies has increased dramatically. In the early days of crypto, the only way to put coins into cold storage was by creating a paper wallet.

Since then, tech entrepreneurs have stepped in and filled a much-needed void in the market: a way to safely store and easily transact with cryptocurrency.  And for that, we thank them.

Avesta and Hardware Wallets

With Avesta , users won’t have to worry about losing their private keys. While a hardware wallet becomes little more than a paperweight without it’s pin number or backup passphrase, Avesta accounts can be inherited by any individual designated by the wallet holder. And if the wallet holder does not designate anyone, the coins will be distributed back to the miners.