cryptocurrency wallets

What Is a Wallet?

All cryptocurrencies have unique wallets. Bitcoin has a unique wallet. Ethereum has a unique wallet. Ripple has a unique wallet. Cryptocurrency wallets are not literal/physical wallets; they are digital wallets because they hold digital or cryptocurrencies.

Cryptocurrency wallets are code written to act and function like a literal wallet that one uses to carry their dollars, for example.

I will use Bitcoin to explain cryptocurrency wallets.

A Bitcoin wallet is loosely the equivalent of a physical wallet on the Bitcoin network (called the blockchain). The wallet actually contains your private key(s) which allow you to spend the bitcoins allocated to it in the blockchain. The private key for your Bitcoin wallet is for YOUR EYES ONLY, thus private. You NEVER share this key with anyone. Anyone who gets a hold of your private key has access to your Bitcoin wallet and can take it.

Your Bitcoin wallet also contains a public key. The public key is the code assigned to your wallet that you give to others who may want to send you Bitcoin. The public key is also referred to as the deposit or receive address of your wallet. You do not care who sees this key.

You can have as many Bitcoin wallets that you like. I personally have three of them. One on Coinbase, one within a desktop application called Exodus, and a third Bitcoin wallet within a hardware wallet called the Nano Ledger X.


A retired Information Technology Specialist and Foreign Service Officer with a large U.S. Government Federal Agency, Technical Instructor, Blogger, WordPress Instructor, Web Designer, Internet Marketer and Cryptocurrency Investor and Mentor.

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