The world of cryptocurrency is currently valued at a staggering $USD2.7 trillion. That’s an absolutely astounding number for something that hardly existed just a few years ago. 2017 was a break-out year for blockchain, and it hasn’t slowed down since.
Now, there are numerous blockchains, countless decentralized applications (DApps), and the crypto world is continuously growing. It’s now possible to borrow and lend your cryptocurrencies, own unique digital art, and purchase a wide variety of things using crypto.
So how does one participate in the world of decentralized finance (DeFi) and blockchain? It all starts with a cryptocurrency wallet.
A lot of people believe crypto wallets simply store cryptocurrencies, but that’s not quite how it works. An actual definition of what a cryptocurrency wallet is would be something along the lines of:
A cryptocurrency wallet is a software program that manages the secret keys that are needed to authenticate cryptocurrency transactions on distributed ledgers.
Simply put, crypto wallets are tools used to interact with a blockchain. In a sense, the wallet is your blockchain identity, and it tells the blockchain what you own and how much of it you have.
Crypto wallets are a crucial part of the cryptocurrency ecosystem because they are the sole way to establish ownership of digital assets. It’s also how DApps (and Web 3.0 websites) identify you, essentially creating a portable profile without having to disclose your real name or identity.
MetaMask (Cryptocurrency wallet)
There are a lot of different cryptocurrency wallets to choose from, but MetaMask is by far the most popular. That’s because it works with an extension for your web 3.0 web browser so you can interact with the many decentralized applications in existence.
Creating a MetaMask Cryptocurrency Wallet
MetaMask is initially set up to work with the Ethereum blockchain, currently the largest blockchain by a fair margin. But, MetaMask is extremely versatile because you can use it with other blockchains like Fantom, BSC, and Avalanche with a little extra work.
Web Browsers for MetaMask
MetaMask Mobile app
Steps: How to set up a MetaMask Cryptocurrency wallet
STEP 1. In your desktop browser, go to the URL: https://metamask.io/ and select “Download Now”.
STEP 2. Click on Install MetaMask for Chrome (or your browser)
STEP 3. Once the MetaMask extension has been installed, open the extension and select “Get Started”.
STEP 4. Select the Create a Wallet option. If you want to help improve MetaMask, click “I agree” on the subsequent page; otherwise, select “No Thanks” to continue.
STEP 5. Create a strong 8 or more character password to secure your MetaMask account.
STEP 6. To see your unique seed phrase, select Click here to reveal secret words. You are to keep your seed phrase in a secure place only you have access to. Your seed phrase is the only means to get your money back if your device or browser stops working or crashes.
The best way to secure your MetaMask key phrase is to write your 12-word phrase on a piece of paper and keep it in a secure location that only you have access to. Note that if you forget your seed phrase, MetaMask will be unable to assist you in recovering your wallet, and you will permanently lose your funds.
STEP 7. Verify your secret backup phrase by clicking on each word in the same order as it appeared on the previous screen. After doing this, click Confirm. to continue, and viola… You’ve successfully created your very own MetaMask Wallet.
Crypto wallets are very important tools in the utilization of cryptocurrencies. They are one of the most basic pieces of infrastructure that enable transactions on blockchain networks. Be sure to keep track of your secret phrases because, unfortunately, there are no “Forgot password” options when it comes to cryptocurrency.
If you get a new device or want to use your wallet elsewhere, you will need the secret phrase to import your wallet onto that device. So, please keep it safe, and don’t lose it. Good luck, and welcome to the world of decentralized finance (DeFi).
CJ is a lifelong gamer and computer enthusiast, and he enjoys getting the most out of his hardware, peripherals, and games. Research is just a part of the process, and CJ loves to share what he learns. More recently, CJ has fallen in love with the world of blockchain and decentralized finance.