As discussed in a previous blog about Bitcoin wallets there are a few different ways to store your Bitcoins in wallets. In this article we are going to take a look at paper wallets, and perhaps most importantly tell you how to make a paper Bitcoin wallet.
We will begin by answering the question what is a Bitcoin paper wallet? Quite simply it is the public and private key printed together on a paper document. Usually they will be in QR form, and this is of course a method of ‘cold storage’, as it is not online and therefore cannot be hacked. Also the clue is in the name; usually they are printed on paper although technically they can exist on any substance which can be printed on such as card or plastic.
So how do you make a paper Bitcoin wallet. The easiest way of doing this is simply by entering the public and private keys into a word document and printing them. There are however some websites which create some nifty looking paper wallets for you. Quite often you can fold and seal them which makes them more secure than simply being on a normal piece of paper, and some of them even contain anti tamper seals, so you can see if someone has accessed them. They are also used as a way of sending someone Bitcoin as a present, and let’s face it, what could be nicer than opening your birthday card and finding a paper wallet with Bitcoin in it?
Are there any security risks involved with paper Bitcoin wallets though? One of the strong points of them is that because they are offline then they cannot be hacked at all so as long as you keep the paper wallet secure then nobody can get their hands on your Bitcoin. There is of course some risks though if your wallet falls into the wrong hands as they can access everything by using this key, so if you choose to store your Bitcoin this way then you have to ensure that it is kept in a secure place.