As the world is advancing in terms of finance, the cryptocurrency market is experiencing a higher benefit from trade. The most popular one, Bitcoin recently hit $12,000 worth, which is considered the highest since August 2019. The firm has successfully achieved a more comprehensive community and attracted potential investors and hackers from all around the world. However, this makes it more prone to scams and hacks, as digital hackers are always looking for ways to steal-worthy assets. The same applies to the crypto industry, with a large population of people involved in digital payments. All thanks to Covid and work from home, the lack of attention and security analysis towards online doorways makes it more prone to hackers which sometimes users fail to recognize.
The growth of Cryptocurrency starting back in 2009, the years have witnessed a substantial amount of hacks and heists majorly being reported on crypto wallets and exchanges. To prove the allegations, CipherTrace, a blockchain security firm published a report in 2019 termed “2019 Cryptocurrency Anti-Money Laundering (AML) which included info about the crypto crimes hitting over $4.3 billion where Bitcoin and Ethereum were robbed at a cost of over $125 million in 2019 through digital wallets and crypto exchanges.
Understanding Crypto Crimes
Crypto wallets and exchanges are the most significant areas for hackers to perform false activities on. Digital wallets work using private and public keys. A private key is a numerical number that is confidential and should not be shared with anyone at any cost. Lack of awareness and maintenance of wallets results in hackers finding out your keys and accessing your saved investments. The private key is a preliminary source for hackers to access your coins, that’s why it should be saved wisely. The rising crimes have discouraged investors from trading into the digital space. However, this can be prevented through prudent methods for preserving their online wallets and holdings.
Tips to Protect Cryptocurrency from Cyber Attacks
1. Secure your crypto wallets
The number one way to protect your account from hackers is to work upon and provide maximum security to your digital portals “crypto wallets”. There are two types of wallets: Hot wallets and cold wallets. The cold wallets or physical wallets resemble USB drives and work as physical storage for coins and tokens. These digital offline wallets are not maintained on the cloud, but offline to maintain high security. Examples – Trezor, Ledger.
Hot wallets are digital wallets where transactions take place quickly and are available online. Examples are Coinbase and Blockchain.info. Easy to access through a desktop or mobile, these wallets come with a risk as all the info is stored online. Cold wallets are preferred for maximum security as they eliminate the risks of scams and fraudulent activities.
2. Update password regularly
One should never underestimate the power of an updated and strong password in the case of crypto and blockchain. One should use a complex and difficult to guess the password, needed to be changed regularly. A study showed that a large majority of millennials in the U.S utilize the same password on more than five devices, social media platforms, and other applications which makes it prone to hackers. One should opt for two-factor authentication (2FA) or multi-factor authentication (MFA) while trading crypto. Cyber awareness, monitoring, and maintaining healthy digital activities are also key factors for avoiding crimes online.
3. Malicious advertisement and email marketing
It is often easy to get scammed by malicious ads and emails in the crypto world. One should stay aware while making transactions and should not use any of the given links that look suspicious in the portal. Cyber attacks through unknown malicious links and advertisements are done by fake domains, claiming themselves to be authorised firms and helpful employees.
4. Safe working portal
While performing crypto transactions, one should go for a private secure internet connection, and not a public Wi-Fi. If done may lead to history leakage of your performed activities which might include confidential information such as key, passcode, etc. Even while using a home connection, VPN can make the operation more powerful as it changes your IP address and location, keeping your browsing history safe.
As bitcoin is considered as the good currency, it is resulting in higher cybercrimes that one needs to take care of while performing digital transactions and using crypto-wallets. Recurring monitoring and updating is a needed process for secure trading and investment.
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