An Ultimate Guide on Why You Should Use A VPN When Working with Cryptocurrencies
Cryptocurrencies have become a trend in the world today majorly because of the anonymity they provide to money movement. You can make payments for organizations, fund campaigns, and so on without having such payments linked to you. Bitcoin is the most popular cryptocurrency and being what it is, you are your bank and would have to provide yourself with all the security you need to protect your money. We would be discussing some of the reasons why you should use a VPN when working with cryptocurrencies, and other tips to ensure your activities are fully secure and your privacy remains intact.
Table of Content
Cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin work with blockchain technology. Every transaction you make is stored in a large number of nodes so that it is difficult to fake a bitcoin. For this to be even possible, you would have to hack into all the nodes simultaneously and it would be a tedious task. This doesn’t imply that with cryptocurrencies, you would have absolute security and anonymity hence the need for extra caution. Cryptocurrency transactions are also irreversible as a coin can vanish from your account without a trace once you send it. This feature is what hackers are using to break into user accounts and steal small coins.
In 2017 for instance, more than $1,000,000 was stolen from Bithumb exchange, and the private information of 30,000 users was compromised. The accounted losses include fraud that was committed with the stolen data and spear phishing.
Security Risks of Cryptocurrency
As already mentioned, your online exchanges can be hijacked and your coins were stolen, but this isn’t the only risk you stand to face when dealing with cryptocurrency. Others include:
- Using offline wallets are not safe and can still be hacked. Besides they are cumbersome and some Trojans such as Pony Loader 2.0 can identify your wallets and steal from them.
- Initial Coin Offering is becoming a common type of fraud. Think about new cryptocurrency startup deals before you get involved. Even though a lot of them are legit, fake ones exist and so you should tread carefully.
- There are a lot of fake trading exchanges and so to be on the safe side, use an exchange platform with a good reputation.
- You may get careless or make a mistake and have your bitcoin address compromised. To retain your anonymity, don’t post your bitcoin address on social media or through messaging platforms as it can be discovered and tied to your identity. This will link every transaction you have performed with that address to you.
- Contrary to popular belief, bitcoin isn’t completely anonymous. Newer cryptocurrencies like Monero and Zcash offer even better anonymity than bitcoin. With bitcoin, an IP address can be linked to the bitcoin address and with that, the user’s identity would be exposed.
Interesting Read : How To Protect Your Financial Privacy with Bitcoin: A Comprehensive Guide
- For the sake of transparency, blockchain accounts are publicly recorded. If those addresses get linked somehow to an individual, the person could easily become a target to hackers especially if they have a lot of money in cryptocurrency.
- Some governments have banned cryptocurrency, while others have heavily taxed them. Since the eyes of the government are much on this form of exchange, their efforts to track these transactions would be increased. So if you were there for the sake of anonymity, it may soon be over.
- You are susceptible to phishing attacks. Electrum Wallet Nets got their share of the attack in which almost a million was stolen in just a few hours.
- Cryptojacking is another form of malware attack. In crypto-jacking, your computer or phone is hacked and then your CPU is used for mining. This is a power-intensive process and can make your device slow. Run a check for malware if you notice that your device performance has dropped.
Why You Should Use A VPN When Working with Cryptocurrencies
Since there are many security risks around the use of cryptocurrencies, you need to use a system that guarantees your safety and continued privacy. There are other ways to protect your data and your identity but it’s easier to do it with a VPN. There are different types of VPNs, but not all are equipped to provide you with the service you require when you deal with cryptocurrencies so choose wisely. LimeVPN is a great choice that will provide you with military-grade encryption, and keep you anonymous.
The following are reasons why you should work with cryptocurrencies over a VPN:
- With a VPN, your data is encrypted when you are trading, so that hackers find it hard to intercept.
- VPNs help protect you from phishing attacks as you can’t be redirected to phishing websites since hackers can’t monitor your traffic. A VPN also prevents you from getting spam emails that would lead you to malicious websites thereby protecting you from phishing attacks. The firewall that comes with VPNs serves to protect you from any phishing threats too.
- Premium VPNs have anti-virus and anti-malware features to protect you from such attacks.
- When you use a VPN and try to access the web over the VPN connection, your IP address is hidden and your request is sent through that of the server you choose. This prevents tracking as you can be active online but no one would know it’s you. So whatever you do with your bitcoin address, it won’t be linked to you. If bitcoin exchange is banned in your country, you will also bypass this restriction if you use an IP in a different location where the ban doesn’t exist.
- If the use of a VPN is slowing down your internet, you can configure it to only encrypt data concerning cryptocurrency activities. Note that not all VPNs are slow however and some give you high connection speed. Connecting to a server close to your real location also helps with speed.
- Choose a VPN that has a strict no-logs policy. This way, your activities won’t be recorded and nothing would be tied to you.
- It’s expensive to maintain VPN servers and you may wonder how free VPNs do it. They pay for the maintenance and other costs by selling user data to a third party. So you can see that while you are trying to protect your data by using a VPN, it is being sold out. It’s best to use a paid VPN service as you are sure that your data would be secure. Paid VPNs are more reliable and offer you secure services without being expensive.
Precautions to Take When Dealing with Cryptocurrencies
As mentioned earlier, there are several ways to protect yourself as you use cryptocurrencies apart from a VPN, and here are a few of them.
- It’s tempting to store your wallet on your phone and make transactions from there as it is very convenient, but it is also very risky and you are strongly advised not to do it. If you must however have a wallet and make transactions from your mobile phone, have a wallet with a small number of coins that you need in it. Phones are more vulnerable to hijacking and theft and so you would be doing yourself a great favor to avoid this device.
- Unless you are connected to a good VPN service, don’t do any transactions over public Wi-Fi. Public Wi-Fi is most commonly hijacked and an attacker may be intercepting all your data. Once they get every necessary detail, your coins would be stolen.
- Always use a strong password for your wallets. It’s also advisable to use different passwords for each one. If you are scared that you will forget the password you choose, use a password manager. This will save your passwords for you so you can make them as strong as possible. Strong passwords include alphabets of both uppercase and lowercase. It also includes special characters. Don’t use your name or date of birth or other combination that is easy to crack.
- You mustn’t use bitcoin only even though it is very popular. Consider using other forms of cryptocurrency that provide you with better anonymity.
- Use two-factor authentication with your online accounts to make it more secure. With this layer of security, it will be more difficult for a hacker to complete any action without your permission.
- Encrypt your wallet no matter the location. If it is stored online, encrypt it in the cloud. Some cloud services provide encryption services. If it is stored offline, you can also encrypt it. This will protect you from losing your money and data to theft if the file is found. Encrypting the wallet doesn’t make it invincible, but it makes it useless in the hands of another person. Encrypted data appears like gibberish until the decryption key is used.
- If you can, store your main wallet offline. Most hacks occur when you access the internet and as long as you are offline, the chances of getting robbed are low. This is referred to as creating an air gap. You will be safe as long as your physical security is good because the only way you would be hacked is if a hacker has physical access to your device.
- If you are performing bitcoin transactions with individuals you don’t know, make use of escrow services. Once the coin leaves your wallet, it becomes untraceable and you may easily be scammed. So an escrow service ensures the person gets paid only after they meet their end of the deal and you are satisfied with the work done.
- Use an IP rotator that can change your IP address after each transaction. LimeVPN offers you a pool of secure IPs that you can use with an IP rotator so that you will be more anonymous. Your cryptocurrency address won’t be tied to any location or IP address making it more difficult for you to be traced.
Interesting Read : How to Set up A Home Server and Use It as a Bitcoin Node?
- Have the main wallet where you store your coins, and protect it heavily. Keep it offline and do everything to keep it from the hands of others. Have a small working wallet from where you can perform transactions after funding it with your primary wallet. This provides you with better security and reduces the losses you may get if your wallet gets compromised. The case of “don’t put all your eggs in one basket” applies heavily here.
- Update every software you have that protects your device and data from attacks. Such apps include your antivirus and VPN apps. Also, choose services from reputable brands like LimeVPN for VPN. You can know what a product offers by reading their features, and know what users are saying about it by checking out the reviews. Doing all these will protect you from crypto-jacking. Also, use an ad blocker and anti-crypto mining extension such as MinerBlock with your browser.
- If the transaction you want to perform is of high value or high security, a multi-signature address would be most preferred. Such addresses are used by businesses that can share the keys with multiple staff. If you can, then it would increase your security level.
- The security your OS provides is also very important. An OS like Linux provides you with features that help keep viruses and malware away making your cryptocurrency more secure.
- Use encrypted emails and messaging apps when communicating. You never can tell who is stalking you and so with these encrypted channels, every message you send and every data you share would be secure and safe from prying eyes.
- A hardware wallet like Ledger is a great way to ensure the security of your wallet keys.
- All of these would be useless if you don’t use the internet while following safety guidelines. Don’t click on links in an email as it could lead to a malicious site or begin the download of malware into your system. If you see a crypto deal that seems too good to be true, it probably isn’t good at all so avoid it just to ensure you are not scammed. Don’t buy into ICOs just because of what you are told but do your research and be convinced before making a move.
Why You Should Use LimeVPN
- LimeVPN is a paid service but it’s very affordable. So there is no need to compromise your security and privacy by using a free VPN when you can get reliable service for almost free.
- Some VPN services slow down your connection due to the rerouting and encryption going on. LimeVPN isn’t like that and offers you up to 1 Gbps despite the heavy encryption it provides you with.
- You get unlimited bandwidth with no throttling so that apart from your crypto dealings, you can download large files and stream online without your ISP slowing you down.
- With a NAT firewall and hotspot Wi-Fi protection, your wallet would be further protected from hackers that are ever looking for loopholes to exploit.
- Using LimeVPN offers you military-grade 256-bit encryption. This is the most secure at the moment and would take a supercomputer several lifetimes to decipher the encrypted data. So even if an attacker intercepts your data or message, it would be useless to them.
- You have several security protocols to ensure you are safe. The protocols in use include; PPTP, SSTP, L2TP, IPSec, SOCKS5 Softether, and IKEV2. There is also a detailed guide on how to configure them on every device.
- Thanks to their strict no logs policy, your operations won’t be saved eliminating the possibility of your crypto address being linked back to you in the future. This is another feature that makes your dealings more secure.
- You have free VPN apps that are already configured so you won’t have to go through the whole configuration process on your own. There is also a detailed step by step guide on how to install VPN connections for every device or protocol you want to use.
Interesting Read : Bitcoin in 2017, but 2018 is the year of Ethereum
- There are IP servers in almost every location around the globe, so you can choose from anyone depending on your location or what you need.
- All IPs are fresh and dedicated to you only. So you get a full performance.
- LimeVPN protects its clients from DDoS attacks.
- You can use Tor over VPN to further enhance your anonymity.
- With 24/7 live human support, you will get the assistance you need if you run into any problem during your use of the VPN service.
- LimeVPN doesn’t involve any third parties as they write their codes and manage their system by themselves. So you can rest assured that your data isn’t going to be exposed.
- Unlike what you’ll experience when you use free VPN services, you will have a stable connection with blazing speeds. There is very reduced latency for a great user experience.
- Apart from your use of a VPN for crypto dealings, you can also use LimeVPN for torrenting without any traces. Share large files and download content from the internet anonymously.
- LimeVPN Pro gives you a dedicated VPN node that guarantees 1 Gbps speed plus over 20 concurrent connections for your account. You have personal Ips that are shared with no other user so you can enjoy the full performance alone.
Cryptocurrencies are the new wave as everyone is tapping into the anonymity and flexibility they offer. Hackers and other cybercriminals are also interested in this new form of exchange and so it’s not as secure as you may think. There are several risks involved with the use of cryptocurrencies, especially that which doesn’t offer you good protection. There are several ways you can safely use cryptocurrencies to avoid having the transactions linked back to you, and there are also ways you can store your money and keep it safe from the attacks of cybercriminals.
A VPN is one of such ways you can ensure your security and privacy and these are the primary reasons why you should use a VPN when working with cryptocurrencies. Not all VPNs are equipped to offer you the protection you need, and if you are in doubt, try LimeVPN. They have great features put in place to give you nothing less than perfect performance.