If you’ve been in the cryptocurrency space for a while, having an Ethereum wallet is almost necessary especially if you like holding and investing in ERC20 tokens.
If you’re looking for a good guide(with screenshots) on how to safely store and secure your Ether(ETH) and your ERC20 tokens, then this is the guide for you.
Table of contents:
- How to create an Ethereum wallet via Keystore File using MyEtherWallet (unsafe)
- How to create an Ethereum wallet via Mnemonic Phrase using MyEtherWallet (unsafe)
- How to create an Ethereum wallet via MEWconnect (safe)
- Storing your Ether using the Ledger Nano S/Nano X (very safe)
- Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ)
You can click on your option(1-4) of choice to skip to their sections.
- Head over to https://www.myetherwallet.com/ and click on “Create A New Wallet“
- Click on “Continue“
- Instead of spamming the Next button, we heavily suggest reading through the slides presented.
- After reaching the end after reading through the slides, click on “Get Started“
- Click on the “By Keystore File” tab, choose a password for your wallet, then click on Next
- Click on “Download Keystore File“
- Follow the steps 1-4 on the How to create an Ethereum wallet via Keystore File using MyEtherWallet section above
- Choose the By Mnemonic Phrase option
- You can choose the 24-word option for better security, but for this example we’ll use the 12-word option.
You can also use a password if you want to(recommended).
After writing down the 12 words, click on I Wrote Down My Mnemonic Phase
- It’s now time to double check the words you’ve written down. Simply type in the correct words, and click on Verify
- Your wallet has now been created. Click on Unlock Wallet
- You can now access your wallet by picking the Software option, and type in your recovery seed
For this example, we will be creating an Ethereum wallet through MEWconnect, on an android phone. The procedure on iPhones(iOS) phones should be very similar.
Downloading and creating the wallet
- Head over to https://www.myetherwallet.com/create-wallet and download and install the MEWconnect app for your device(Android/iOS)
- Open up the app, and click on CREATE NEW WALLET
- Pick a password. This password is to make sure no one could access your funds if ever you lost your phone or if it gets stolen.
Make sure to pick a password that’s secure enough.
- Re-type your password
- Wait a few seconds, and your wallet should be ready. Click on START USING MEWCONNECT
- Your Ethereum address will then be displayed. Though you can now send your Ether(ETH) and your Ethereum ERC20 tokens on this wallet you just made, we first need to backup your wallet for security purposes. Just so if you lose access to your phone.
Backing up the wallet
- Click on the i icon on the top left of your screen
- Tap on Back up my wallet
- Tap on the BACK UP NOW button
- Tap on the START button
- Type in the password you’ve chosen earlier
- A list of 24 words would then be displayed. This will be your recovery seed, which you will use if ever you lose your phone some time in the future, or when you’re planning on changing to a different phone.
Simply write them down on a piece of paper. Do NOT save the words on a word file, a .txt file, on Facebook, on your e-mail, or anywhere digital.
- It’s now time to double check the words you’ve written down. Simply tap the correct words, and click on the small check icon on the top right of your screen.
- Your wallet is now backed up. you now can safely store your funds on your MEWconnect wallet.
Installing the Ethereum app
- Plug in your Ledger Nano S/X to your computer and Open up Ledger Live
- Enter your Ledger wallet PIN, head over to the Manager section, and select accept on your Ledger wallet for Ledger Live to be able to access your hardware wallet
- A list of apps will then be displayed. Look for Ethereum, and simply click on the Install button
- Now click on Accounts on the side bar, and click on the Add account button
- You will now be prompted to choose what account to add. Simply type in “Ether”, and choose the Ethereum option. Click on Continue.
- Open the Ethereum app on your Ledger Nano S/X, then click on Continue
- Wait for Ledger Live to sync
- Type in your preferred account name, and click on the checkbox.
Then click on Add account
- You can now send in your Ether(ETH) and your ERC20 tokens to your Ledger Ethereum wallet by clicking on Receive on the sidebar.
There are four(4) options. Which steps should I follow?
We only suggest following steps 1 and 2 if you only hold a small amount of Ether(ETH) and tokens. If you own bigger amounts, we heavily suggest purchasing a Ledger hardware wallet to make your funds as secure as possible.
If you’re planning on holding significant amounts of cryptocurrencies long term, investing in a reputable hardware wallet is absolutely necessary.
MyEtherWallet(MEW) has been one of the most reputable wallet sites since the Ethereum project started. Though, there are also other alternatives like MyCrypto, it’s going to be quite similar as MyCrypto mostly only has a different user interface.
Why shouldn’t I save my recovery seed/mnemonic phase on my phone or on my computer?
Unfortunately, computers, especially Windows devices(especially when outdated), are simply very prone to malware and viruses. There are certain malware/viruses that are solely designed to look for recovery seeds on your device, which causes a good number of people that hold cryptocurrencies to lose their funds.
While mobile phones are mostly more secure than desktop computers, the risk is still there.
The only way for your funds to be safe from hackers, is to simply store your recovery seed offline, on a piece of paper. Just make sure that the piece of paper is hidden from plain sight. Preferably, stored in a fire-proof safe.