With a secure digital wallet and the right platform, sending Bitcoin is safe and easy.
Sending traditional currency — or receiving it — can be frustrating. Fees add up and restrictions may vary from region to region. But how does all this apply to Bitcoin?
In this article, we’ll share the basics for sending and receiving Bitcoin and the simple steps you need to take to do it securely.
Let’s start by examining why you might send crypto in the first place.
Why Send or Receive Crypto?
There are many advantages to sending or receiving crypto instead of using a traditional money transfer service. Some of the biggest include time saved, lower fees, and limited information disclosure.
With traditional transfers, the money can take three to six business days to arrive in the receiver’s account and requires a substantial fee for same-day deposits. With crypto, transfers take seconds.
Fees tend to be much lower when sending crypto as well. Traditional transfer services charge fees close to 10% of the amount being transferred. But with many crypto payment apps, the fees are often less than 1%.
Traditional transfer services also often have an upper limit on how much you can transfer, which may differ from region to region. With cryptocurrencies, no such limit exists.
Finally, once you have an established account with a leading crypto platform, such as Binance.US, you can send or receive crypto securely without providing any potentially sensitive personal information.
How does this work? And what else do you have to know to send or receive crypto? Let’s take a look at some crypto basics before we discuss this in more detail.
Crypto Basics to Understand
Part of the reason you can send and receive crypto so quickly and securely is because of its underlying technology: blockchain.
A blockchain is an encrypted digital database ledger distributed over a network of computers. It’s comprised of blocks, each of which records validated details about a digital transaction, such as the sale or transfer of crypto. Once added to the chain, the blocks are immutable.
The combination of validation — no block can be added until the transactions have been validated — and immutability enables the secure sending and receiving of cryptocurrency and other digital assets.
Each cryptocurrency carries two keys — or strings of characters — that encrypt data. A public key visible to anyone on the blockchain is akin to a street address and allows a sender to easily locate a receiver. The private key is secret and used by the sender to authorize the transaction.
A Bitcoin address is simply a condensed version of the public key. As with physical locations and physical packages, the Bitcoin address allows you to send Bitcoin from your virtual location to a recipient at theirs.
Addresses are just that — destinations. They aren’t meant to hold or store cryptocurrencies. To do that you’ll need a crypto wallet.
What’s a Crypto Wallet?
Unlike a traditional wallet that holds your fiat currency, a crypto wallet does not actually hold your cryptocurrency. Instead, a crypto wallet holds the public and private keys mentioned above.
The “actual” cryptocurrency is just an encrypted string of characters and numbers whose record becomes part of the transaction history locked in the immutable blockchain.
But to do anything with them, you’ll need a key — your private key safely stashed in your digital wallet. Some crypto platforms offer a digital wallet as part of their app or online system. Others offer a wallet you can download.
Alternatively, you can choose to purchase software or hardware wallets.
Software wallets are programs or apps that hold your crypto keys. Since they are software, they can be generalized or specialized for particular cryptocurrencies. They are available for your laptop, mobile device, or can reside entirely online.
Hardware wallets are as they sound: a device similar to a USB or hard drive that stores crypto key information. They offer the advantage of being somewhat disconnected from the network — authorization takes place on the hardware device, not on network-connected software.
So what kind of wallet should you use?
If you are fiercely protective of your crypto assets, a separate wallet — not a platform’s custodial one — may be best for you. As to the difference between software and hardware, it may come down to preference and ease of use.
Software wallets, especially mobile ones, tend to be very simple to use. And if making many rapid transactions is important, software wallets may give you an edge. If you make infrequent transactions and/or care more about safely storing your cryptocurrencies, the super-secure nature of hardware wallets may be appealing.
But regardless of type, crypto wallets, like Trust Wallet, make sending and receiving Bitcoin super easy.
How to Send and Receive Bitcoin Securely
It is possible to send or receive Bitcoin securely without a crypto wallet as many exchanges will allow exchange-to-exchange transfer of BTC. Crypto payment services and crypto platform apps may also enable sending and receiving without a separate wallet. Check your crypto platform or preferred crypto payment service to see what it offers.
Overall, sending or receiving crypto works best from a digital wallet. Here are the basic steps to complete your transactions.
How to Send Bitcoin in 3 Simple Steps
1. In your crypto wallet, choose “send” and enter the address you want to send the Bitcoin.
2. Enter the amount of Bitcoin you want to send.
3. Complete the transaction by clicking “send.”
How to Receive Bitcoin in 2 Simple Steps
1. In your wallet, select “receive” or “generate a new address.”
2. Share that address with the person sending you Bitcoin.
Things to Keep in Mind When Sending Bitcoin
Crypto transactions tend to be more permanent as blockchain’s immutability makes it impossible to simply “reverse a transaction.”
So, before you click send, triple-check the address to make sure the crypto is going to the right person. Since addresses are a string of characters and numbers that can look like nonsense, it’s important to carefully proofread each character before initiating anything.
Also, use only a secure, trusted service. Bitcoin’s integrity is protected by its cryptographic encryption, so it’s almost impossible to counterfeit it, and blockchain provides a highly secure transaction recording environment. But if the service you use isn’t secure, all bets are off.
The same goes for your personal information or private keys. If they’re stored with a platform service, your information and key are only as safe as the service is secure. Choose a platform partner wisely.
Send and Receive Bitcoin With the Right Crypto Platform
Figuring out how to send Bitcoin is relatively straightforward — especially if you have a crypto wallet. Perhaps the most important component of buying, selling, or trading, though, is having the best crypto platform partner.
Here are a few things you’ll want to look for in a crypto partner for the long haul.
Security. Above all else, make sure your personal information is safe and look for a platform that uses two-factor identification in addition to anti-theft tactics.
Services. A strong platform will offer more than just simple buy or sell functionality. More advanced features that will allow investing over time can help your Bitcoin grow so you have more to send!
Fees. As we saw with traditional money transfers and payment services, transaction fees can quickly erode the value of what you’re sending or make it prohibitively expensive to do so. Consider both the normal Bitcoin network transaction fees and any charged by the platform.
Binance.US is known for its reasonable and clearly communicated fees, so there are no hidden surprises.
Ease of use. The basic steps to send or receive Bitcoin are fairly straightforward. Make sure the platform you choose allows you to easily send and receive BTC, so you always know what’s going on and what you have to do next to achieve your goals.
Keeps you smart. The right platform partner will keep you ahead of the learning curve so that your crypto experience isn’t a trial-by-error ordeal. Check out its educational resources and the range they cover so you can be prepared for all things crypto.
To buy, sell, send, and receive Bitcoin on Binance.US, create your free account today.
Legal disclaimer: This material has been prepared for general informational purposes only and should NOT be: (1) considered an individualized recommendation or advice; and (2) relied upon for any investment activities. All information is provided on an as-is basis and is subject to change without notice, we make no representation or warranty of any kind, express or implied, regarding the accuracy, validity, reliability, availability, or completeness of any such information. Binance.US does NOT provide investment, legal, or tax advice in any manner or form. The ownership of any investment decision(s) exclusively vests with you after analyzing all possible risk factors and by exercising your own independent discretion. Binance.US shall not be liable for any consequences thereof.