Ledger, the bitcoin/cryptocurrency hardware wallet and security company today launched a new product called Cryptosteel. The new tool is a backup device for optimal offline storage of your recovery phrase (24 words backup).
The Cryptosteel can be assembled easily, resists fire up to 1200°C / 2100°F, water, shock, and wear.
The brushed stainless AISI 304 steel design goes a long way in helping safeguard users 24 words.
When you own cryptocurrencies, what you really own are “private keys”. They are a unique and critical piece of information which is used to sign your cryptocurrency transactions and move your funds to a new address. Whoever has access to this data can have access to your assets.
These private keys are safeguarded inside the secure chips of Ledger hardware wallets, but they also exist as a physical backup in the form of 24 words. It is called a “recovery phrase” and is used to reinject the private keys in a new device in case of loss or destruction of your hardware wallet. Note that the “private keys” and the “recovery phrase” are exactly the same information: only the representation is different – binary in one case, human-readable words in the other.
The need to have a shield…
Even if a current Ledger hardware wallet is safeguarding private keys, anything can happen to the device (destruction, theft, malfunction…) and therefore you always need to keep a backup for emergency recovery. While you daily use it, you do not have to remember or type this recovery phrase, the Ledger device stores it for you, you simply have to enter your PIN code. But your recovery phrase is your backup, the indispensable way to recover your wallets, your accounts, your funds, in case of loss of your device. So it is definitely essential to having a safe and – as far as possible – indestructible backup of this seed. Let’s imagine your device has been theft, and/or your 24 words have been erased, burnt, thrown away by mistake. Your funds could be lost forever.