The internet is full of scammers and hackers, and cryptocurrency investments are no different. However, as opposed to other purchases and transactions that take place on the internet, once you have purchased Bitcoin, the transaction cannot be reversed. The network is decentralized, so it does not have a method to determine what transactions are made with legitimate versus stolen coins. There has been an estimated $1 billion in cryptocurrency hacks to date. You may be wondering just how thieves can steal your crypto. If you buy Bitcoin in Miami or beyond, here’s what you need to know.
How Crypto Hacking Happens
There are multiple ways that hackers can gain access to your Bitcoin if you aren’t safe. One way is through accessing your private key; hackers will be able to move your funds from your wallet from anywhere in the world if they have your credentials.
Hackers can gain access to your private keys or crypto login information in a few different ways. Here is a breakdown of how crypto hacking happens.
Personal attacks happen through phishing scams, malware, social manipulation, phone porting, and weak passwords.
- Phishing Attacks
Phishing attacks are one way of hacking your accounts, as the scammer will fake the appearance of a trustworthy entity to gain access to your accounts. Hackers can use phishing emails or websites to trick crypto users into giving them access to their digital wallets. What does this look like? Here’s what to look out for:
- A hacker may send an email claiming to be from a legitimate cryptocurrency exchange.
- The email may ask the user to click on a link to log in to their account. Always confirm the sender before providing any information.
- When the user enters their login credentials, the hacker can steal them and gain access to their wallet.
Phishing scams will disguise themselves to steal your information. Always tread carefully when giving your information out.
Malware is a hacker’s software that can be used to steal Bitcoin from a user’s wallet. Similar to a phishing website, a hacker may create a fake cryptocurrency wallet app that contains malware. When a user downloads the app and enters their login credentials, the malware can steal the information and gain access to their wallet. This type of hacker is similar to a phishing scammer in that they encourage users to provide confidential information through trickery.
- Social Manipulation
Some hackers will contact you implying that there is an issue with your wallet and that they can help you resolve the issue. Hackers can use social engineering tactics to gain access to a user’s Bitcoin wallet. For example, a hacker may call posing as a customer support representative from a cryptocurrency exchange and ask you to provide your login credentials or keys to resolve a fabricated “issue”. Posing as a customer service representative is one way hackers gain information, so again, be cautious and know that legitimate exchange platforms will not contact you asking for personal information.
- Phone Porting
Phone porting is another example of a cryptocurrency hack. A scammer will pretend to be you and call your mobile carrier to ask to transfer your phone number to their SIM card. From there, they may attempt to reset your passwords and use your phone number as a security backup. Phone porting is a process where a phone number is transferred from one service provider to another. This is typically done when someone wants to switch to a new mobile phone carrier, but it can also be used fraudulently as a method of manipulation in order to gain unauthorized access to someone’s digital wallet or other financial accounts. In a phone porting attack, a hacker will gather personal information about their target, such as their name, address, and date of birth. They will then contact the target’s mobile phone carrier and use the stolen personal information to request that the victim’s phone number be transferred to a new carrier or SIM card. This can be done by providing false or stolen identity information.
Once the phone number has been “ported” to a new carrier, the hacker can use it to gain access to the target’s accounts that require two-factor authentication (2FA) via SMS or phone call verification. This can include bank accounts, email accounts, and cryptocurrency wallets. Hackers can then reset the passwords and take control of the accounts.
- Weak Passwords
If a user chooses a weak password for their Bitcoin wallet, a hacker may be able to guess it and gain access to their wallet. Make sure you protect your information with a strong password.
Hacking Exchange Platforms
Hackers can also target cryptocurrency exchanges and steal Bitcoin from users who have stored their coins on the exchange. These attacks can be particularly damaging as they can affect a large number of users.
Crypto hackers can gain access to large exchange platforms in a number of ways, including:
- Software Hacking
Hackers target exchange platforms by exploiting possible vulnerabilities in the exchange’s software or infrastructure. By targeting technological weaknesses in the exchange’s security systems, hackers have been successful in gaining access to user accounts and stealing funds. These criminals can exploit minor or major flaws in the exchange’s website, mobile app, or network infrastructure.
- Insider Threats
Insider threats also pose problems for large exchange platforms. In some cases, hackers may be able to gain access to an exchange’s systems or information by exploiting vulnerabilities within the organization. These crimes involve insiders facilitating data breaches.
Avoiding Attacks On Exchange Platforms
To protect yourself from these attacks on exchange platforms, crypto users can take several steps:
- Choose reputable exchanges: Use well-established and reputable exchanges that have a track record of security and reliability. Check reviews and research the exchange’s security features before using it.
- Use two-factor authentication: Enable two-factor authentication to add an extra layer of security to your account. This can help protect against unauthorized access to your account, even if your password is compromised.
- Keep your software up to date: Keep your computer, mobile device, and other software up to date with the latest security measures and updates.
- Store your funds offline: Consider storing your cryptocurrency funds in a hardware wallet or other offline storage device to protect against online attacks. Diversifying your wallets is a good way to ensure your funds stay safe.
- Regularly monitor your account: Regularly check your account for any unauthorized transactions or activity. Report any suspicious activity to the exchange immediately.
It’s important to take steps to secure your Bitcoin wallet and be cautious of any suspicious activity or requests for personal information. By following standard practices for security and staying informed about potential threats, you can protect your Bitcoin from hackers.
Protecting Yourself From Digital Wallet Hackers
Next time you buy Bitcoin in Miami or beyond, make sure you take the necessary steps to protect yourself.
Cryptocurrency wallets work differently than traditional bank accounts because they are decentralized, which causes the transactions to be irreversible. Once your funds have left your wallet, you cannot get them back without initiating another transaction. As a result, it is essential to take the necessary precautions to prevent your cryptocurrency wallet from getting hacked. Here are some tips to help you avoid wallet hacks:
- Choose a secure wallet.
Make sure you choose a reputable wallet provider and avoid using unknown or untested wallets to store your funds. Make sure to read customer reviews and check the wallet provider’s security features before choosing which one to use.
- Keep your private keys safe.
Your private keys are the only way to access your cryptocurrency funds. Keep them safe and never share them with anyone. Make sure to store them in a secure place, preferably offline. You should never save your keys on your computer or mobile phone.
- Find a wallet that uses two-factor authentication.
Use two-factor authentication to add an extra layer of security to your wallet. It will require you to enter a code from an app or text message to access your account, making it difficult for hackers to gain access to your account.
- Be cautious with public Wi-Fi.
Avoid using public Wi-Fi networks when accessing your cryptocurrency wallet. Public Wi-Fi networks can be vulnerable to hackers, and your wallet could be compromised.
- Enable transaction notifications.
Enable notifications for any transactions made on your wallet. This way, you will be alerted immediately if there is any suspicious activity.By following these tips, you can help protect your cryptocurrency wallet from being hacked. Choose a wallet that has reputable security measures, secure your private keys offline and away from where your wallet is stored, implement a multi-signature approach for your funds (or two-factor authentication), be cautious when using public Wi-fi networks, enable transaction notifications, and double check where you are sending your money before you send it. Transactions (even fraudulent transactions) are irreversible. Crypto hackers are a threat, but there are always measures you can take to protect your digital accounts. You should know that RockItCoin’s App and ATM machines prioritize each user’s privacy and take the security of each transaction very seriously. When using RockItCoin to buy or sell cryptocurrency, you can be sure that your information is in good hands.