First-Party Wallets

Looking for a wallet you update yourself, and store on your computer? Coin Pursuit details the features—and responsibilities—of first-party wallets.

These are wallets you install and maintain yourself, as opposed to having them stored by a third party (we'll go into more detail on this type in our next section. These can be downloaded from a number of sources, such as exchanges, independent wallet creators, and the home pages of the currencies themselves. Of the four types of wallets listed in the introduction to this topic, software, mobile and paper wallets are considered part of the first-party category.

A lot of alternative currency users like the freedom of first-party wallets, because their upkeep doesn't ever have to rely on someone else taking action. With a first-party wallet, you're in charge—but as the saying goes, with great power comes great responsibility. That's not to imply something horrible will happen when you maintain your wallet yourself; it just means some of the details that would be taken care of by others with a third-party wallet will be your responsibility alone. For example, if there are updates, patches or glitch fixes for your wallet, it will be up to you to make sure they're downloaded and applied. Most wallet issuers will give you a heads-up message when they're available, but it'll be up to you to install them.

A note here about paper wallets: when you print out the codes for your cryptocurrency, those pieces of paper become as valuable as government-issued money or traveler's checks. Treat them as such, and use the appropriate security measures to make sure they don't get lost or stolen. Digital currency codes don't have any ownership identifiers, so whoever holds those codes becomes the owner. These words of advice apply to cryptocurrency stored in any fashion, electronic or hard copy, of course—but paper wallets can be much easier to steal. Secure your money so it remains yours.

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