Tuesday, March 4, 2014

How to securely store private keys?

How to prove that me is me? The answer is simple: private key. But then... How to store it securely?

Favourite quotes from sources listed above:

Protecting your private key is the most important job you have to use GnuPG correctly.

Losing sole possession of your private key is catastrophic.

Safely storing your private key is important, but there is a cost. Ideally, you would keep the private key on a removable, write-protected disk such as a floppy disk, and you would use it on a single-user machine not connected to a network.

Private keys may also be stored on portable hardware, such as a smart card.


I know myself, I know how I treat devices. They are pretty much disposable. Hardware is cheap, intellectual property and thought behind is what matters to me. That is why I supported Keepod :) I love the idea behind and while it is primarily targeted at Africa I see plenty of use cases in privileged world too.

I was thinking about becoming a cyborg by inserting an implant that would hold my private key. Is it over the top? See discussion about Bitcoin Tattoos

Maybe Electrum has a solution?

Seriously, you should be using the Electrum wallet with its 12 word seed. I can't tell you how much simpler it's made my Bitcoin experience.
It's comforting knowing that no matter how many addresses I create in a wallet, or if my computer starts on fire, my wallet is backed up as long as I know those 12 words.

I like the idea. It's human-approachable... Porn industry invented streaming, Wall Street guys did this, military did that and Bitcoin apparently is teaching us how to think long term!

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