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Not Your Keys Not Your Coin

The phrase “not your keys, not your coin” is a popular mantra in the cryptocurrency community that is used to emphasize the importance of owning and controlling one’s own private keys. Private keys are a crucial aspect of cryptocurrency ownership and security, as they are used to access and control the funds in a cryptocurrency wallet.

When you own the private keys to your cryptocurrency, you are in full control of your funds. You have the ability to access your coins, send them to other addresses, and check the balance of your wallet. However, if you do not own the private keys, you do not truly own the coins and it could lead to potential loss of access to your funds.

One of the most common ways in which individuals do not own the private keys to their cryptocurrency is through the use of centralized exchanges. When you deposit your cryptocurrency onto an exchange, you are transferring control of your private keys to the exchange. The exchange then holds your coins in a centralized wallet and controls the private keys. This means that you do not have direct control over your funds and are at the mercy of the exchange’s policies, security measures, and the possibility of hacking.

This is where the phrase “not your keys, not your coin” comes in. It serves as a reminder that if you do not own and control the private keys to your cryptocurrency, you do not truly own the coins. The phrase is often used to encourage individuals to take responsibility for their own cryptocurrency security and to move away from centralized exchanges and towards decentralized solutions like software wallets and hardware wallets.

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Another way individuals lose control over their private keys is by using custodial solutions or smart contracts that hold their funds, like DeFi platforms or NFT marketplaces, for example. The user’s funds are held by the platform and the user does not have full control over the private keys. This could lead to similar issues as mentioned before, such as loss of access to funds or changes in platform’s policies.

In conclusion, the phrase “not your keys, not your coin” is a popular mantra in the cryptocurrency community that is used to emphasise the importance of owning and controlling one’s own private keys. It serves as a reminder that if you do not own and control the private keys to your cryptocurrency, you do not truly own the coins. It encourages individuals to take responsibility for their own cryptocurrency security and to move away from centralised solutions and towards decentralised options such as software and hardware wallets.