Why Bitcoin Holders should Use 2FA
May 5, 2021 - How-To Articles
With great power comes great responsibility.
This quote cuts across several areas in life. For Bitcoin holders, the need to take personal responsibility is fundamental. The network is decentralized and presents unique opportunities and challenges.
There is no single entity to police Bitcoin transactions. For traditional banks, you can call the bank in case there is a problem. With the click of a button, the bank can cancel a transaction and reinstate your funds.
For Bitcoin, the security of the account is ultimately in the hands of the holder. Hackers have exploited loopholes in recent years to steal funds from exchanges and vulnerable wallets.
Therefore, the need for security is absolute. When handling Bitcoin, it is better to be accused of being too cautious. Hackers can exploit any vulnerability ruthlessly with devastating consequences.
What is 2-Factor Authentication?
In every activity that gives you access to something that requires a password or PIN, you provide some form of authentication.
The password authenticates that you own or control the account acting as an authentication layer.
2-Factor authentication means that you provide two layers of authentication. For instance, if your email has 2FA, every time you log in by entering a password, the attempt triggers an automatic code to your phone to enter and access your account.
Accordingly, you have an extra layer of security.
This double protection means that your phone will receive a notification if a hacker gets access to your password. The notification allows you to know that nefarious activity is on and immediately secure the account.
An extra verification layer plays a beneficial security role.
For instance, getting a one-time passcode (OTP) that your email is compromised can help secure sensitive documents. 2-FA makes it harder for a hacker to access your data or crypto assets.
In the modern world of unprecedented connectivity, there are many vulnerable aspects of our lives online.
2FA implies that there are two layers. Security developers have also created multifactor authentication to add further confirmation layers.
For instance, three-factor authentication (3FA) uses verification from three separate categories of authentication factors. The more the authentication layers, the more robust an account is against hackers.
Think of it as a house with several doors. If someone breaks the first door, it triggers an automatic alarm so that you know that they are trying to break the second.
Accordingly, 2FA helps the account owner have a constant awareness of their account status. This utility is vital in securing crypto wallets and accounts.
2FA In Bitcoin Transactions
Security in cryptocurrency transactions is an ever-present concern. 2FA seems like a basic procedure given the entire security repertoire of most websites.
Exchange accounts usually have an account password and the provision of a 2FA authentication PIN. Users enter this code using a secondary device like a mobile phone or a USB key.
Adding 2FA right away ensures that your account is more secure instantly.
Most significant exchanges enforce 2FA. Nonetheless, it would be best if you extended this practice to virtually every account you own.
These extra measures cover everything from your email to social media accounts that don’t connect to your crypto wallet. Hacking can be about attempts to seize your assets or stealing information that can form the basis of blackmail.
Different authenticators provide varying levels of strength. Even though phones are relatively secure, an experienced hacker can still change your mobile number to a different phone or a voice-over-internet protocol (VOIP).
After this step, the hacker gains access to your exchange account if you rely on SMS style 2FA (a PIN sent by text).
That said, this would have to be a genuinely elite hacker, the odds of which are low.
Even when using 2FA, don’t leave any of your crypto account identification details on social media. Online information is inherently vulnerable. If you have to store such information online, use multi-factor authentication techniques to provide further protection. Hackers can be very deliberate in scanning social media accounts for financial information and even crypto passwords.
Examples Of 2FA Authenticators
There are several 2 FA services for secondary authentication of online accounts. These services have solidified their reputations over the past decade as digital security became a hot topic.
- Google Authenticator
Google has the obvious name-recognition in internet services.
Their authenticator is reputable and simple.
It is available for iOS and Android and works with several popular accounts like Drop box, Facebook, Gmail, and most crypto exchanges.
A user can deploy codes manually or using a QR code. You need to back up the account recovery code in case of loss.
Nonetheless, this authenticator is simple enough and reliable enough for many crypto exchange users.
- Microsoft Authenticator
The tech giant has made a free authenticator for its Windows line of phones, iOS, and Android devices.
Users can also enter or scan codes tethered to online account keys.
Microsoft provides 2 FA for many services and also has a one-tap push notification option.
Moreover, users can save their secure backup data using Microsoft’s 2FA application. This service is vital in case of gadget damage or loss of codes.
This is yet another popular authenticator that can work with many devices.
Users can add several accounts on Authy, and the application has a master backup.
Therefore, if the user has ten accounts and damages a mobile device, the user can use the master backup to restore all ten account 2FA codes.
That said, users should try and save backup codes for individual accounts separately. Authy is compatible with both iOS and Android devices.
These authenticators are free and straightforward to use.
They are a helpful service in ensuring that anyone trying to mess with your funds has their work cut out.
Alternatively, you can use offline hardware wallets for complete security.
Store only funds you need on an online wallet.
These wallets act as a 2FA in their own right because one has to plug them online to access them. Hardware wallets provide ultimate storage for significant cryptocurrency holdings.
Installing 2FA services like Google Authenticator on your phone is straightforward. You install the software on your phone, then go to the online security section to a 2FA code.
The alphanumeric code should be backed up, and you are good to go. The minor inconvenience is nothing compared to the potential losses that could occur for lax security.
VBit is Committed to Security of Mined Bitcoin
Bitcoin is a lucrative target for hackers.
The risk/reward dynamics of a virtual asset are just too good.
As professional Bitcoin miners, we know the need for robust security for the Bitcoin we mine.
Accordingly, we educate our investors on all aspects of Bitcoin security and best practices. This way, the hard-earned Bitcoin does not go to waste.
Our Bitcoin mining is unique because it uses renewable hydroelectric energy. Accordingly, cheap electricity allows us to mine efficiently without a carbon footprint.
Check us out to learn more about Bitcoin mining!