How to Pay Safely with Crypto in Online Casinos
I have a quite complimentary article about cryptocurrencies, in which I go through all advantages of such payment method for online casino players. However, crypto could cause serious money losses if you don’t do it in the right way.
Top online casino sites accepting Crypto
(Players from United States are welcome)
In this article, I am going to cover basic security measurements to be taken to make your deposit/withdrawals at online casino safe.
All security precautions come down to the fact, that the only person who controls private key (password) of a particular crypto address (account) is in full control of crypto assets.
having only one copy of your private key is a bad idea
do not enter private key on unverified websites
do not store your private key online (cloud storages, google spreadsheets etc.) unless you know how to do it properly
Let’s elaborate on each statement further, because they are not too obvious as they may seem at first glance.
Many people have lost their private keys and so many to come
Losing your private key is an absolute nightmare for crypto users since you won’t be able to access your money anymore in that case.
Thus, don’t be too self-confident when you decide how many copies of your private key is better to make. However, there is another side of the coin. You must somehow prevent unauthorized access to those copies because the individual who knows private key controls all crypto assets.
I personally prefer to solve this problem that way. I don’t make too many backups of a private key, instead, I am focused on storing them in some different locations. What are they?
Physical copy (wrote down on a piece of paper), which I hide somewhere at my home.
Digital copy on a separate flash-card. Here I use password manager since it allows to protect sensitive data with a password. KeePass is doing the job perfectly well, and it is free.
Digital copy on another flash-card which I store at my friends’ or parents’ houses.
Thereby, I can be sure that if even one backup copy of the private key is lost, I won’t get wrecked.
To put it simply, don’t put all your eggs in one basket. Three-four reserve copies are enough for the most cases, but if you are storing a significant amount of money on it, then it is justifiable to become more paranoid.
Hackers are eager to trick you into entering your private key
Another quite widespread vector of attack on crypto users is a fishing website. It becomes possible because many people access their crypto accounts online, on special websites dedicated to these purposes.
A hacker makes a website looking exactly like the legit one and often send a link to it via email to the victim. An unsuspecting online casino player enters his/hers private key on it. Since then a hacker gets the private key and can steal all the money right away.
How to make sure you are on the correct website? First thing first, we need to find out what the URL of a legit website is. I prefer to visit coinmarketcap.com, the biggest crypto tracking venue, and there they provide you with links to official websites for each cryptocurrency.
Always compare URLs whenever you are entering your private key on the internet. For example, this is how legit Ethereum online wallet URL must look like.
Anything other than https://www.myetherwallet.com is a scammer`s website. The difference can be just in one letter (for example, https://www.myetherwaallet.com, as you can see here is "aa" instead of "a"), so match up URLs very carefully.
Actually this advise is relevant for all online activities when you are supposed to enter some sensitive data on the website.
Storing your private key online could cause major security risks
Some people, in an attempt to back up their private key, which is, of course, a smart thing to do, are putting them on online storage services (like Google Drive and many others). But the problem is that if a malicious actor gets access to your Google Drive (it won’t necessarily happen, but there are definitely many scenarios how it could happen), then your private key is stolen.
I have nothing against this method in general, even use it myself, but you should protect the file with private key with a strong password. As I said before, KeePass comes very convenient in order to solve this problem.
Those were the most prevailing types of attacks/issues. If you feel like you need extra security while storing your crypto assets, then another option would be to buy hardware crypto wallet.
Ledger has become a leader in the crypto security field and will protect you against fishing websites. Though it does not mitigate the risks of losing a private key.
Check out other Beginners FAQ articles: