What is my Bitcoin Wallet Address?
The topic of Bitcoin wallets is a bit confusing and quite complex. Many have struggled with what their wallet address is, how to find it and what to do with it.
To make things easier to understand, let’s go over step-by-step:
How to create a Bitcoin wallet so you can get a Bitcoin address; How to find your public wallet address (and private keys, which you won’t share); What to do once you have your Bitcoin address; How to back up your wallet to secure your funds.
Step 1: Choose a Wallet App
First things first. You need a mobile wallet app to set up your wallet in. You can choose any digital wallet app, and the steps will be similar from here forward.
One thing to note, if you plan to use a Coin Cloud Bitcoin ATM, we highly advise using the Coin Cloud Wallet app. It’s designed to be the most optimal and seamless experience when using the two together — kind of like your own little personal system.
Just download your chosen wallet app to your mobile device or computer, and log in or create a new account.
Step 2: Create a Wallet
Most digital wallet apps will be similar to this process, but we’ll walk through what you would do specifically with the Coin Cloud Wallet app.
On the home screen you will see the wallets you’ve already created. If you don’t have any, or you want to create a new one, choose Settings on the upper right and scroll down to Wallets. Touch + Add Wallet.
You’ll have the choice to create a Basic or Shared Wallet, Join a Shared Wallet or Import an existing wallet. Just choose Basic Wallet for now.
Choose the currency you want for your new wallet. For this example, choose BTC (Bitcoin). Then give it a Wallet name (i.e. My BTC Wallet) and choose Create.
Step 3: Get Your Address
To get your public bitcoin address — for example, so somebody can send you money — tap on the wallet you just created from the home screen.
Tap on **Receive” at the bottom of the wallet screen to display your bitcoin wallet address. You will see a long, complicated string of letters and numbers (usually 34 digits), which is your bitcoin wallet address. You will also see a QR code below it.
If somebody is going to send you money from their mobile device right then and there, or if you are using a Coin Cloud Bitcoin ATM, you’ll just scan the QR code.
If you need the address to give somebody online, touch the Copy symbol to the left of the address and paste it where you need it to go.
Get a New Address
To generate a new bitcoin wallet address, touch the Refresh symbol to the right of your address.
Note: You can update or change your bitcoin address as often as you want. Many people use a different wallet address for each transaction, and some wallet apps will automatically generate new addresses from time to time (on each use, on login, or some other trigger). Changing the address will not change the wallet itself, and it will not prevent the next transaction from going to the same wallet.
4. Back up Your Wallet
To back up your bitcoin wallet and make sure you can retrieve the funds in case you lose your phone or uninstall the wallet app, you MUST back it up and take note of your private keys.
Get your 12-Word Pass Phrase
Choose Settings > Wallets, which will take you to the Wallet Key Settings page.
Choose Backup and read the notice about safeguarding your recovery phrase. Then write down or take a screenshot of ALL 12 words, in the order they’re shown to you.
Choose NEXT after each word until you have them all.
You will then be asked to VERIFY your passphrase by tapping on the words shown, in the same order. After verifying it, be sure to store your recovery phrase in a safe and secure place.
Public vs Private Keys
We’re going to go deeper into this in a separate post tomorrow, but just know this: you can share your Public Keys, which is the same as the Bitcoin Wallet Address or Public Bitcoin Address. That lets people send you money or check your transactions on the blockchain.
NEVER share your Private Keys, however. These come in the form of a longer string of 64 letters and numbers, as well as an easier-to-remember 12-Word Pass Phrase.
With your 64-digit Private Address OR your 12-word Pass Phrase (also called Passphrase, Recovery Phrase, Seed Phrase, Seed Recovery Phrase or Backup Seed Phrase), ANYBODY can import your wallet and access your funds. Keep it safe!
Access your Extended Private Key
To see or copy that 64-digit private key, choose Settings > Advanced > Extended Private Key.
Choose Copy to clipboard.
Remember, do NOT use this longer private bitcoin wallet address publicly. It’s only for you, to back up or import your wallet should you wish to move to a different wallet app or different device. Nobody needs it to send you money, and sharing it can result in your bitcoin being stolen.
What is Coin Cloud?
Coin Cloud is a digital currency machine (DCM) company founded in 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada. With over 1,400 locations nationwide, Coin Cloud is the world’s largest and fastest-growing network of two-way DCMs, a more advanced version of the Bitcoin ATM. Over 60% of all two-way bitcoin machines in the US are Coin Cloud DCMs, empowering you to quickly and easily buy and sell 30+ virtual currency options with cash. You can find your nearest Coin Cloud DCM here.