How To Transfer Bitcoin, Litecoin, Ethereum From Coinbase To Trezor
If you’ve been buying any sum of Bitcoin for more than 30 days, you’ve likely come across the term, Trezor. And you’ve probably felt overwhelmed and confused. Rightfully so, once you conquered buying Bitcoin or Litecoin or Ethereum (or all) on Coinbase, you probably felt as if you’d just conquered all things Internet. But now, it seems, there’s more to know, more to learn, more to engage with. That’s cryptocurrency. But don’t worry, it isn’t a drag. If you are new to Bitcoin or cryptocurrencies in general, please begin with my Bitcoin beginner guide. Once you buy any sum of Bitcoin, Litecoin, or Ethereum, you will then need to learn a deeper level of security capacity. Well, you might need to. If you plan to just buy one Litecoin, or just a $100 increment of Bitcoin, you might not need to consider this article (don’t worry, I will explain). Moving Bitcoin from Coinbase to Trezor is all about understanding and assessing your risk exposure. And that won’t be difficult to do after reading this article. We are going to discuss the following:
- Transfer Bitcoin From Coinbase to Trezor
- Transfer Ethereum From Coinbase to Trezor (slightly different)
- Transfer Litecoin From Coinbase To Trezor (slightly different)
If you need to skip down to exact instructions, please understand that Bitcoin is used in place of Litecoin and Ethereum because the processes for moving Litecoin to Trezor or moving Ethereum to Trezor are virtually the same. Litecoin, however, has one potential extra step.
I Just Bought Bitcoin, Now People Say I Need A Trezor?
By now, you own a little (or a lot) of cryptocurrency. Maybe you’ve already seen your investment grow. You’ve mentally evolved to overlook the Cryptocurrency naysayers. You feel comfortable and less apprehensive about putting a little money in exchange for cryptocurrency exposure. But now suddenly, you are being told you forgot one major step: Protecting your Bitcoins, or Litecoins, or Ethereum. You’ve potentially even been shamed into thinking you invested money into something you never fully researched or understood. But that’s simply not true. If you are reading this article within a few months, or within a few $1000 invested into Crypto, you’ve come along at the right time of your cryptocurrency journey.
To start, because I know it is on your mind seeing you just splurged for some Bitcoins: How much will this cost? Probably, $80-ish, depending on the current Amazon pricing. Here’s the Trezor I use as listed on Amazon.
I’ve heard that some versions cost more due to colors. Seriously, I get the black or white Trezor, they work the same.
Now, let’s discuss a couple of items:
Why would you need a Trezor?
Ok, this is the most obvious question. And you truly need to understand it in order to understand how to assess your need for a Trezor. The truth is, you may not need one at all. It may not offer you enough value to matter.
You probably bought your Bitcoin or Litecoin or Ehterum at Coinbase. And hopefully, this means you have 2-step authentication turned on. This means that each time you log into Coinbase, you are asked to input a string of numbers which were texted to your smartphone. This should mean that any hacker would need your phone in order to access your account, even under the dire circumstances that they guessed, or knew your password. Two-step authentication is great. But it is not the end-all for cybersecurity. Hackers have discovered ways to bypass two-step authentication. Yes, two-step is a better and improved version of cybersecurity. Yes, you should make sure this is turned on in Coinbase, as well as Facebook and Google. But it isn’t full proof.
When it comes to cryptocurrency, hacking is a highly motivated criminal activity. The way that blockchain works, Bitcoins and Litecoins and Ethereum are gone once you send them. There are no refunds. If you friend can log into your Coinbase account and send him or herself a Bitcoin, they own it. You are out of luck.
But doesn’t Coinbase protect us?
They try. But, this is not your bank. Coinbase claims to ensure any losses due to hacks which are derived from within their own system. But not on yours. If you are hanging in a Starbucks and your Coinbase mobile app, or desktop credentials, become compromised, you suffer the losses which may incur as a result of such nefarious activity. Coinbase isn’t going to act in the same way your bank does and start refunding you losses while opening an investigation. Your digital currency is gone. Forever.
And the truth is, the lines might blur if a Coinbase derived hack does occur. Nothing is guaranteed.
Ok, now that you are freaking out, let’s bring you back to a bit of rational calm.
Whether you need a Trezor or not depends highly on your exposure to risk. If you currently own $50 in Bitcoin, should you spend more than that on a Trezor? Bitcoin is rising, so a $50 BTC right now could be worth a lot more than that in a few years. And this may well be why you bought it. But as soon as you purchase a Trezor, your $50 investment may jump to $130 or more. So in order to be profitable, your Bitcoin needs to rise beyond that amount. This is simple economics.
Now, if you know that you intend to buy Bitcoin or Litecoin or Ethereum each month, the exposure to risks becomes higher. And the ability to profit beyond the cost of the Trezor begins to soften relatively quick. My Trezor is covered currently by my Bitcoin profits. Unless Bitcoin dives completely, I’ve suffered no losses in buying it and I’ve only added to my layers of protection for my investment.
One inhibition I do not think you should have in regards to purchasing a Trezor is that it seems complicated. It is not. The concept is simple.
How Trezor Works
So right now, your Bitcoins are stored in Coinbase. You can send Bitcoins from Coinbase to anywhere that takes Bitcoin. This includes sending them to your Trezor. Once you send Bitcoins or Litecoins or Ethereum to your Trezor, they are removed from Coinbase and now loaded on a hard drive that’s in your possession. You can send them back to Coinbase if you like. You can also send them to a merchant who accepts Bitcoin as a payment. But the key here is that the digital currency is now on a hard drive, not in the web’s cloud. This removes the exposure from hackers who are constantly attempting to break into Coinbase or scanning for Coinbase credentials.
So Trezor is just a hard drive. You’d be moving your digital currency from Coinbase, which is a web application, to a hard drive. Nothing changes in the value of your digital currency. Bitcoin continues to be worth what it worth on the open market. The only difference is that your Bitcoins are now on a hard drive. Don’t complicate the matter any further than that.
The value now is that you don’t have to worry about Bitcoin being hacked, or you being hacked.
Now, you have your Bitcoins in a wallet. You no longer have to worry about someone piping into your home Wifi, or hacking your smartphone while you are roaming around Target.
But what if I lose my Trezor or drop it in the pool, or it burns down?
Ah, wonderful questions. Trezor, as fortune would have it, has you covered. When you first begin using your Trezor, you are asked to create a mnemonic code, which is called a seed. This seed can be 24, 18, or even 12 words. The seed is important, like, everything. You need to keep this seed somewhere extremely safe.
If something happens to your Trezor, your seed allows you to purchase a new Trezor and recover your digital currency.
How To Transfer Bitcoins From Coinbase To Trezor
As stated earlier, “Bitcoin” can be replaced with “Litecoin” or “Ethereum.” However, Litecoin does have a potential extra step, so pay attention.
Remember, we are working in simple concepts: You can really only do two things with Bitcoin, BUY or RECEIVE. So, if you want to SEND me Bitcoin, I will go into Coinbase, hit RECEIVE. I will generate a code and send you that code. You will go into Coinbase and hit SEND. You will input that code. The transaction is forever.
This is how Trezor works. You go into TREZOR and generate a RECEIVE code. Then, you go into Coinbase and SEND to that code. You do this while the Trezor is plugged into your computer.
Now, let’s look visually at this simple concept. PLEASE NOTE – TREZOR USES MYETHERAWALLET TO STORE ETHEREUM. No big deal, but when you click Ethereum on Trezor, its a bit different in process. I will add that below.
First, go into Trezor, select the currency you want to RECEIVE. Then, generate a send code.
Now, you can see above the Trezor has selected to receive BTC, or Bitcoin. You could have selected Litecoin, Etherum, and a few other cryptocurrency options.
Now, let’s look at Coinbase. I’m using Ethereum as my example, which would not work on this Trezor example as it is set to Bitcoin. But you get the idea. It works the same.
First, you’d go to your Coinbase accounts. You’d see Bitcoin, Litecoin, Ethereum. They all look the same, they have two options – SEND and RECEIVE.
You would now click SEND.
Now just input the code where it says RECIPIENT.
So transferring Bitcoin to from Coinbase to Trezor is easily achieved by taking a few steps.
Transfering Ethereum From Coinbase To Trezor
This is a bit different. You follow the above process, however, when you select Ethereum on Trezor, it directs you to MyEtherWallet. You will be asked which device you want to use. Select Trezor. You will be asked if you want to EXPORT one of the addresses, select the top one and do so. That’s your new Ether address to use and transfer. Same process. When you do transfer, you will see that the Ethereum settles in that wallet. BUT, that wallet is only connected to Trezor, and is only connected to Trezor.
Transfer Litecoin From Coinbase To Trezor
Slightly different, you will need to obtain a modified address. I like this guy’s demostration on Litecoin.
Load $1 in Bitcoin on your Trezor. Then wipe it. Then follow the recovery steps. Understand how to recover your Trezor and you will feel a lot better about the entire experience.
Again, here’s my recommended purchase for Trezor:
Author: Jim Satney
PrepForThat’s Editor and lead writer for political, survival, and weather categories.
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