What is a hardware wallet?

Posted by Andrew Laron on

hardware wallet stores the user's private keys in a secure hardware device.
Crypto hardware wallets have major advantages over standard software wallets:
  • private keys are often stored in a protected area of a microcontroller, and cannot be transferred out of the device in plaintext
  • immune to computer viruses that steal from software wallets
  • can be used securely and interactively, as opposed to a paper wallet which must be imported to software at some point
 
Hardware wallets are currently the best method to protect your digital assets.  The biggest advantage is that your private key is stored completely offline and never exposed to your computer, so your chances of getting your wallet hacked are close to zero. If you lose your hardware wallet, you can restore your wallet to another device or another wallet entirely with the seed. It truly is an investment that could save you all your crypto holdings down the line.
 
The main advantage is that your wallet's private keys are isolated from your computer and not vulnerable to theft from trojans or other malware. The USB interface is tightly constrained and only allows a few operations like "sign this transaction", none of which allow the keys to be retrieved from the device.
 
2. How does the Ledger Nano S work? 
Ledger Nano S is a secure Bitcoin hardware wallet. It connects to any computer through USB and embeds a built-in OLED display to double-check and confirm each transaction with a single tap on its buttons. It is architectured around a Secure Element (ST31 family) and built on top of the BOLOS platform, a powerful and flexible Operating System allowing the secure execution of multiple Open Source applications in full isolation.
Main features:
  • cryptographic secrets protected by a secure chip
  • open source embedded Bitcoin app
  • Confirmation of transactions on the embedded screen
  • Built-in 4 digits PIN security lock
  • Built-in onboarding (seed generation and recovery)
  • BIP39 seed (12/18/24 words), easy backup and restoration
  • Multi-apps support: FIDO U2F, GPG, SSH…
  • USB connectivity
  • Foldable and compact casing
 
3. Instructional Use Video For the Ledger Nano S Hardware Wallet - How to Use The Ledger Nano S

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