A hardware wallet is an essential device for keeping your Bitcoin secure and giving you complete control over it. If instead, you have your Bitcoin at an exchange, it is certainly not safe and you don't control it, they do.
Exchanges can be hacked, shut down and are susceptible to internal corruption. Just ask anyone who held their Bitcoin at the Mount Gox exchange when it collapsed ... bye, bye Bitcoin.
Having your Bitcoin at an exchange gives them control of your private keys, which means they decide which, if any, hard forks of the blockchain (such as Bitcoin Cash and Bitcoin Gold) they will support. As a Bitcoin holder at the time of a Bitcoin blockchain hard fork, you are entitled to an equivalent quantity of any cryptocurrency that is formed by it, however, that is only if you control your private keys. When Bitcoin is at an exchange, the decision to support a particular hard fork and reward holders is up to them and so you may miss out.
Some of these hard fork created cryptocurrencies have become significantly valuable in their own right. Those who held their Bitcoin private keys on a hardware wallet at the time of these forks were rewarded with a matching number of the new coins for free. These could then be held as an alternate investment, sold for cash or used to obtain more Bitcoin.
Controlling your own private keys, via a hardware wallet, also gives you the ability to claim free airdropped cryptocurrencies that are awarded to Bitcoin holders, like Bitcoin Rhodium, MWC and Hex. Once again, if your Bitcoin is on an exchange, you forego such opportunities.
If your hardware wallet is damaged, lost or stolen, your Bitcoin is still safe, as the thief or finder wouldn't know the information required to access the wallet. You, however, can restore your entire Bitcoin balance on another hardware or software wallet, because you will have the information to be able to do so.
When purchasing a hardware wallet, it is important to do so from the manufacturer or a reputable distributor, such as, CryptoHWWallet or Coinstop. This way you can be assured of receiving a genuine, brand new, untampered with, product. Never buy one on ebay.
Don't leave it any longer. The risk is real. Secure and control your valuable Bitcoin with a hardware wallet today.
Bitcoin to the Moon is dedicated to following the original cryptocurrency on a journey to its ultimate destination.
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