The Crypto Wallet Hustle – What You Need To Know
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Since the dawn of time, there have been evil individuals who seek to take advantage of their fellow human beings: pickpockets, crooks, con artists, etc. So, the rise of digital and crypto crooks isn’t much of a shock.
We have all received fake emails claiming that we have won the lottery, or a huge endowment from a far away country, asking us to send bank details and sensitive information in order to receive the alleged rewards. Our spam filters have become accustomed to identifying and blocking a good percentage of these unwanted rungs of the digital landscape, but now with the rise of new markets and new technologies such as cryptocurrencies, blockchain and NFTs, crooks have a new supply of fresh blood. , and a strong stream of unconscious and uneducated victims to attack.
Related: The ‘Joker’ Virus Is Back On Android: It Can Empty Your Bank Accounts Without You Noticing & It’s Hidden In These Google Play Store Apps
Scammers have become more sophisticated with the rise of technology, finding ways to conceal their identities – even by cloning profiles of credible market players and claiming to help while sucking their victim dry. I myself have been the victim of a digital wallet hack. Supposedly, I am an industry expert, a technologist who mentors, consults, and leads the way for others. Well, it happened to me, and I did my checks and balances, but clearly not well enough.
Just clicking on a malicious link can be looming disaster. Any simple URL can lead you to grant access to your digital safe, computer, and crypto wallet. My crook was a little more sophisticated. They had cloned the entire team of an NFT project and I was sure I had carefully verified their identity. I was scammed to share my screen, in which case they got access to my MetaMask wallet through my onscreen QR code. (A feature MetaMask has now turned off.) Luckily, I didn’t have a lot of resources in my wallet at the time. They escaped with 0.12 ETH from my hard earned money.
Related: 3 Things To Do Before Buying Cryptocurrency – NerdWallet
There are a few tips and tricks for operating successfully in the crypto space. These are fairly simple tactics that will protect you and your property.
Never share your start phrase (or your QR code)
The 12 or 24 word key phrase that serves as the primary key for your account. Never share this, let anyone else see or access it, never save it to your computer or digitally. Write it down offline, keep a few copies, and keep this paper in a fireproof box and away from the elements.
Get a cold wallet
MetaMask is a hot wallet – it’s ready to shoot, trade, etc. A cold wallet is an offline hardware device, such as a Trezor or a ledger, that provides encrypted access to your wallet and transactions, and is the safest way to operate. Make sure to buy direct from the manufacturer’s website: Trezor.io or Ledger.com. Scammers are known to hack the supply chain of Amazon and other retailers and send hacked cold wallets.
Never click on unfamiliar links
As difficult as it may sound, you can’t really get robbed unless you open the front door and let the thieves in. This can happen in a number of ways, but the easiest way is for you to click on a link that allows the hacker to access your machine or device. Click only on authorized and original links when searching. Check everything before clicking on it. I had a friend who lost 10 ETH plus many assets when told that a new client wanted custom artwork. They sent a link with the supposed image of what they wanted and the software automatically hacked into his wallet and stole everything. You are the keeper of your wallet, there are no banks to protect you here. Don’t let the crooks in!
Don’t keep all your digital eggs in one basket
MetaMask is free, why not take advantage of it? Create more portfolios and spread your digital assets. Remember to save all the Seed Phrases, maybe even use different browsers or another device to access them. Enclose your belongings for maximum security.
Keep your ear to the ground
It pays to be active in the community so that you can be warned and made aware of any new scams or dangers. The NFT and crypto spaces are a warm and tight-knit community, and it is very valuable to be active and up to date with the latest market developments.
Most people only learn to protect themselves and their belongings when it is too late and they have been burnt, try to take this into account now and take some simple steps to avoid that heartbreak in the to come up.