Is storing paper wallet (offline) private keys?


My Wallet's warning for watch-only addresses ("You will not be able to send bitcoins from this address without later providing the private key") can be a bit confusing.

It's possible to specify an address and watch it. And it's possible to import a private key to be able to use the associated address as if it was generated with the My Wallet client.

But these two features are really unrelated. You don't "send out of a watch-only address", rather you import a private key thus making it no longer a watch-only address.

So the question is really whether My Wallet's "Import Private key" feature is safe. I don't have the official answer, but I see no reason why it shouldn't follow the same policy as other keys - the private key is encrypted in your browser (and as needed, decrypted and used to sign) and never leaves your computer in plaintext. If that's true, it is safe as the server never sees your plaintext...

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Is the entire bitcoin address contained in the paper wallet? IE could I just take the public address and Private Key and import then MANUALLY by typing them in or using the QR code into a client such as Armory or Multibit and then send and receive coins from that address?

Yes. The private key can be imported into any client that provides a method for importing private keys. You could then send the bitcoins from that client.

Note that depending on the client you choose, some bitcoins may be sent to a new address that the client creates and keeps hidden from you. So if you have 100 bitcoins (that were all received in a single transaction) associated with address A on the paper wallet, and you import that private key into Bitcoin-Qt to send 5 BTC to someone, then the remaining 95 BTC will no longer be associated with the address on the paper. Bitcoin-Qt will have created a new address (with a new private key) that it didn't tell you about. It will spend the full...

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This article has 3 sections - one for the new wallets based of BIP39 seeds, one for classic wallet addresses imported into the new wallet and one for the classic old wallets.

##For's newer wallets based off a recovery phrase Note:'s new wallets make use of a bip39 recovery seed to generate EVERY ADDRESS and PRIVATE KEY in your account. At this time it is not possible to extract only 1 address' private key so the only option is to make use of the recovery seed to gain access to the address that has your OmniTokens. Extreme care should be taken to perform the following steps on an airgapped/offline machine to preserve the possible integrity of your recovery seed. You may even want to consider this method a fallback/last resort and after completing the recovery actions discard all addresses/wallets/accounts and start a new wallet. You have been warned

If you have not already got your...
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I love Bitcoin. I love how it's elegant, functional, philosophical, and radical.

Unfortunately, for folks not steeped in cypherpunk ideology and network security, bitcoins are hard to understand, hard to purchase, and hard to keep safe. The primary purpose of this site is to make it easier to keep your coins safe once you've gone through the hard work of acquiring some.

The secondary purpose of this site is to encourage you to expand the understanding and acceptance of Bitcoin by loading up and giving away these beautiful and fairly idiot-proof paper wallets.

Hey, here's a couple bitcoins. Keep this paper somewhere safe for now, because some day it might be worth a whole lot and you can buy yourself something nice. Enjoy!

About the Author

Tel +1.505.501.8091 / G+

Canton Becker has been making web sites and programming database-driven web...

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The first step in using any Bitcoin wallet should be to create a backup and store it securely. A Web wallet supports backups through its Paper Backup feature. Use of this feature was found to store an unencrypted copy of the wallet’s private keys in the browser history. This unencrypted backup survived browser and system restarts. The first disclosures of this behavior appear to have been made more than six months ago on Bitcointalk and the Bitcoin subreddit.

Other points include:

Chrome supports synchronization of browser history between computers, raising the possibility of replicating the unencrypted backup across multiple devices. Fortunately, the backup link only appeared in the history of the computer that generated it. To access the browser history after shutting down Firefox, select the “Restore Previous Session” option. Both Firefox and Chrome showed the behavior on Windows, Linux, and Mac, as did Chrome on iOS 7. Other browsers either did...
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Blockchain takes every precaution to keep your wallet safe, but it’s always better to keep a copy just in case. Backing up your Blockchain wallet is an important step in securing your bitcoins. It’s an easy step to forget to do, but in just a few clicks, you can successfully backup your wallet.

Why make a backup?

You want to secure your bitcoins in the event of various scenarios: what if your hard drive crashes and you lose your bitcoins; what if you lose your private key or forget your password? Whatever the case, backing up your wallet ensures you always have the public and private keys, which means you always own the bitcoins and have full control over them.

We’ll take you step-by-step through the top 3 options we recommend. The most secure options we recommend include downloading your wallet backup and making a paper wallet backup. Some backup options require you to remember a password.

Downloading your wallet backup

Downloading your...

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If you’re reading this, you may be one of the few unlucky souls who inadvertently converted their legacy-style wallet to the new HD-style wallet. If you just so happened to have > 1000 addresses in your legacy-style wallet, the conversion process will render your entire wallet unusable due to some limits set in the internal API.

If it seems support is unwilling to help you recover the keys to your legacy wallet, you’re not alone. I just helped someone recover quite a few coins that would have been seemingly lost otherwise. Read on to reclaim your coins…

Once logged into the bricked wallet, the following steps can be taken from inside the javascript debug console in any browser (I used Firefox) to extract private keys for a given address to import elsewhere.

Step 1: dump all active addresses in the wallet:


Run the command above in...

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In this example, a paper wallet is imported and swept using’s web wallet service. First, you will need to open your wallet account and navigate to “Import / Export”. If you don’t already have an account, you can sign up for free.

Navigate to the “Import / Export” tab.

Here you can either type or copy/paste the paper wallet’s private key (i.e. if you have used a stand-alone QR scanner) into the text box and press “Add Private Key”. Or click “Scan With Webcam” to scan the QR code using your webcam.

Choose what type of private key import you wish to perform. gives you the option to import or sweep the paper wallet. Please make sure you understand the difference. It’s generally recommend to sweep the paper wallet instead of importing it.

You’ll be prompted whether to import or sweep.

Once you complete this process you should see the entire paper wallet balance added to your account...

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Here’s something every bitcoin owner should know: the safety and security of your bitcoins is ultimately your responsibility.

Combining digital security knowledge as well as secure bitcoin storage is important if you don’t want your accounts hacked and bitcoins drained. Remember – bitcoin transactions are not reversible. To send or spend bitcoins, one must have access to both public and private keys. Private keys, especially, must be protected.

Types of Bitcoin Wallets

There are a few types of bitcoin wallets and they have varying security mechanism to ensure the safety of private keys.

Simplistically, bitcoin wallets can be divided into 5 types: desktop, mobile, online, hardware and paper wallets. Some types may overlap or used in combination with each other. I’m going to touch on what to expect from each type and feature a few examples you can try out.

Here are 14 secure bitcoin wallet options you can choose from.


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Paper Wallet allows you securely generate bitcoin address and corresponding private key. HOWTO:1) Write down generated private key and address.2) Send bitcoins to the address.3) ????4) PROFIT!!!You can CHECK BALANCE using any public service or bitcoin client. For example: can securely and OFFLINE SPEND coins from your paper wallet without revealing your private key!Features: * Private key/address pairs generation in WIF, Mini, Brain Wallet and BIP 38 (encrypted) formats * Private keys password BIP38 encryption/decryption/password changing * Fully offline operation and no disk writes for super-security * Ability to generate bitcoin spending transactions using almost any external private key * You can set change address and extra miner fee manually * Automatic calculation of miner fee * QR Code scanner to enter private keys, address and payment amount * Shows all QR Codes for your keys and addresses * You...

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Bitcoin is a digital currency and as all things digital it is prone to be stolen, lost due to data corruption, media failure or a hard disk crash. So how does one keep the Bitcoins secure? The old way in a paper format and comes to our aid.

So what are the features of a paper wallet and its drawbacks?

To understand the features first we have to look at how a Bitcoin wallet works. A Bitcoin wallet has two keys a public key which is in fact the Bitcoin address that one shares and uses while sending and receiving Bitcoin money. The other is a private key. The private key enables you to send out Bitcoins. The combination of the recipients private key and senders private key facilitates a cryptocurrency transaction. The private key should be kept safe and secure and never be shared with anyone. Your private key is like a secret key and a person who has access to your secret key also has access to your Bitcoins. He can not only view and access the wallet but...

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Use this straightforward guide to learn what a cryptocurrency wallet is, how they work and discover which ones are the best on the market.

What is a Cryptocurrency Wallet?

A cryptocurrency wallet is a software program that stores private and public keys and interacts with various blockchain to enable users to send and receive digital currency and monitor their balance. If you want to use Bitcoin or any other cryptocurrency, you will need to have a digital wallet.

How do they work?

Millions of people use cryptocurrency wallets, but there is considerable misunderstanding about how they work. Unlike traditional ‘pocket’ wallets, digital wallets don’t store currency. In fact, currencies don’t get stored in any single location or exist anywhere in any physical form. All that exists are records of transactions stored on the...

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You can also store your wallet offline either on a digital medium like a CD or USB key or on paper.

A private key for an address, which allows you to send transactions with it, is really quite small;
for example, the bitcoin address 17CXktyFpiMYpPktkSVWhgbMGj27QA3jNY has the private key 5Jr8W5D5zsjq9ckX26rz5imJqNVUmPSrP9PJYujFowQKvuLoHMt. Those two strings are all you need to send and receive transactions from that address, and you can keep them stored even on paper if you want. The reason why this works is that your wallet does not actually store bitcoins -bitcoins are stored in the public blockchain. Your wallet stores the two keys needed to access and use the bitcoins. To actually spend the bitcoins, you will need to use some kind of client, but that is the only time you need to be connected to the internet at all.

Advantages include:

§ The potential for very strong security; your private keys cannot be stolen by viruses until you use them, at which...

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The first weekly distribution of LTBCOIN to members of the audience is on Saturday the 5th , we're giving away 1.7 million LTBCOIN to users like you. Learn more

In the Let’s Talk Bitcoin forums, one user asked if it was possible to create a paper wallet with two-factor authentication for LTBcoin. “Of course,” I responded confidently, “You can do anything with LTBcoin that you can do with Bitcoin, since an LTBcoin private key is a Bitcoin private key.” But when I considered this further, it occurred to me that I did not know the precise steps needed to accomplish this.

So I set out on a quest to send some LTBcoin to a paper wallet and back and document the process along the way. I am sharing my process here in the hope that it will make the job easier and more comfortable for others who wish to store Counterparty assets offline in a secure paper wallet.

Step 1 - Generate a Paper Wallet

First you need to create a new paper wallet. A convenient way to do...

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One of the most popular options for keeping your bitcoins safe is something called a paper wallet. Here we explain how to transfer all those digital coins into a physical paper form using just a printer.

Note that in this guide we’ll be talking about bitcoin. However, the basic concepts apply to any other cryptocurrency; for example, litecoin.

What is a wallet and why do I need one?

A bitcoin wallet consists of two ‘keys’. The one you’ll already likely be familiar with is the public key, which is your wallet address and is how other people send bitcoins to you.

The other part of your bitcoin wallet is the private key. It is this that enables you to send bitcoins to other people.

The combination of the recipient’s public key and your private key is what makes a cryptocurrency transaction possible.

It is important to understand that, if anyone else obtains the private key of your wallet, they can withdraw your funds – this is why it’s...

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Last updated: 19th October 2015

Bitcoin wallets store the private keys that you need to access a bitcoin address and spend your funds. They come in different forms, designed for different types of device. You can even use paper storage to avoid having them on a computer at all. Of course, it is very important to secure and back up your bitcoin wallet.

Bitcoins are a modern equivalent of cash and, every day, another merchant starts accepting them as payment. We know how they are generated and how a bitcoin transaction works, but how are they stored? We store fiat cash in a physical wallet, and bitcoin works in a similar way, except it's normally digital.

Well, to be absolutely accurate, you don't technically store bitcoins anywhere. What you store are the secure digital keys used to access your public bitcoin addresses and sign transactions. This information is stored in a bitcoin wallet.

Bitcoin wallets come in a variety of forms. There are five main...

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While until recently Ethereum users could lament that their ecosystem lacked simple and convenient wallets, now the selection has definitely expanded. Still, the more the choice is, the harder it is to find what suits you best. ForkLog has compiled an overview for six most popular Ethereum wallets.


Any crypto-project has its own standard implementation and default wallet, and Ethereum is no exception here. Ethereum Foundation that supports the project has created Mist, an Ethereum browser capable of acting like a standard means of storing ETH and interacting with smart contracts.

Still, one shouldn’t forget that currently Mist isn’t quite ready to serve as a full-fledged decentralized app, as it’s still undergoing beta testing. You will have to install it on your HDD with blockchain syncing that takes a while. Additionally, you’ll need basic coding skills. The latest recommended version 0.7.6 (Beta 20) with vulnerabilities removed was released...

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