Hardware Wallet security

Hi friends, I’m curious about something: if my hardware wallet is stolen or lost and someone finds it, can they access my funds? Or does the wallet require the seed phrase every time it’s connected to a computer? Any other helpful information about having a hardware wallet would be greatly appreciated. Thank you!

#Hardware #Wallet #security


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Depends on your pin and/or passphrase strength. Wallets store your seed phrase so you won’t need to enter it every time. You’ll typically enter it on setup or if there’s an error in a firmware update. Your pin will need to be entered every time (passphrase as well on some wallets).

If you lose a wallet you can recover it on another using the seedphrase (+ passphrase). After recovery, you’ll want to recreate a new seed and transfer your balance over.

Tips: don’t be cheap/look for deals buy directly from the manufacturer and follow their instructions


Neither. Ideally, this is how hardware wallet is supposed to work:

* if someone steals your hardware wallet, they cannot access your funds because to do that they need to know your PIN and, assuming you set it up, they’ll also need to know your 2FA phrase (aka. the 25th seed word, well worth learning how to set it up, it’s easy),

* the wallet asks for your PIN (and your 25th word if you set it up) every time it’s connected. It will *NEVER* ask you for the seed phrase. The seed phrase is *NEVER EVER* keyed in *ANYWHERE,* it should be only stored on a piece of paper or a steel plate (they are available for purchase). The seed is only displayed on your wallet once, during its initialisation so you can write it down on a piece of paper.

The last item is very important: *NOBODY* should *EVER* ask you for your seed phrase, no company, no lawyer, nobody. **EXCEPT** if you want to provide it in your will/testament in which case you make sure the testament is stored in a secure place.

In general, check the web and YT for care and feeding of hardware wallets and (especially) of the seed phrase. Again, remember your money is stored in the cloud (in the blockchain or ledger file), it’s NOT stored in your wallet which acts only as a convenient keyring giving you access to the funds. In this sense it’s a bit like a web browser (except it’s a ledger browser) that displays certain information but does not contain it.

Buy the wallet directly from the manufacturer, no Amazon, no eBay, etc. If your wallet looks funny upon arrival (the seal looks broken, serial numbers don’t match, etc.) or it already has a key pre-installed in it – return the thing and notify the manufacturer.


Forgot to add: if your hardware wallet is stolen, you just buy a new one and restore your seed phrase during the new wallet intialisation (they always ask you first time you plug them in whether you want to generate a new key or whether you have a seed already).


Your seed is stored on the device so if they can figure out your PIN code then yes. But almost all devices erase the seed if you input the PIN incorrectly a number of times so can’t be brute forced. They would have to know your PIN


You could read the manufacturers website and see how it’s used. They do provide all kinds of info. No it doesn’t ask for seed words mnemonic.

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