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EOS · 26w

EOS Best Practice - Recovery Key

KEEP YOUR PRIVATE KEYS SECURE is one of the first things you hear when entering the world of blockchain and cryptocurrencies. There are multiple ways to do it and everyone has their opinion on which is best. Some suggest to keep them offline, printed on a piece of paper. Others to use a hardware device like Ledger or Trezor. For smaller wallets keeping it encrypted on your computer is considered fine by a lot of users.

But what if you lose your Ledger or Trezor, or your paper wallet burns? What if your hard drive crashes and it is not recoverable? What if you have an accident lose some of your own memory and can not locate the key or what if you  have a fatal accident?

Some suggest to give a copy of the private key in a closed envelope to a family member or a trusted friend. Others suggest using a bank deposit box or keeping one wallet at home and another one at work. Some keep a copy in an encrypted file somewhere online. All of these options increase the risk of a third party gaining access to your private key.

There are additional options to keep your account secure with EOS, since it is possible to attach multiple private keys to it. By default there are two keys attached. “Owner” and “active” keys. You might use the same key for both and thereby lose any benefit that having two keys gives you. The best practise is to use “active” key for all operations and keep your “owner” key in a cold wallet. This allows you to recover your account in the event of someone gaining access to your “active” key. If you have your EOS staked, this gives you three days to change your active key without losing your staked funds.

With the described setting you do not need another copy of your active key. You are left with having to keep your “owner” key secure. We come back to the risks mentioned earlier about losing your one copy. Keeping two or more copies on the other hand increases the attack vector.

This brings us to the recovery key opti...

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