MyEtherWallet is a more advanced storage solution designed for serious cryptocurrency geeks. The geeks love this digital wallet because it gives them far more control over the currency and how it is used.
Far more control is available because MyEtherWallet (usually referred to as MEW) is a do it yourself solution. A user has to set the device himself and decide how it is used. This feature appeals to hardcore cryptocurrency fans because it provides a higher-level of security and control than commercial wallets such as Coinbase.
A big reason why these people love MyEtherWallet (MEW) is that users do not have to share their keys for access to currency and passwords with a big company like Coinbase. Instead, they control everything themselves because they have to set up the wallet on their own.
What are the differences Between MyEtherWallet and Other Wallets?
MyEtherWallet is actually a platform that lets you set up your own wallet not a payment solution. Basically, you use the platform that MyEtherWallet provides to create your own wallet to store your cryptoccurency in.
Ethereum users like MyEtherWallet because it lets them buy Ethereum Gas which is necessary for the creation of Ethereum smart contracts. Others use it because this wallet provides support for ERC20 an altcoin that is widely used by developers and creators.
Another popular selling point is that MyEthereum Wallet will run on two of the most popular hardware wallets; TREZOR and the Ledger Nano S. That means it might also work with the planned Ledger Blue next-generation hardware wallet. A good way to think of MyEthereumWallet is an app that you download and install on your device or your website.
MyEtherWallet and ICOS
The hardest aspect of working with advanced cryptocurrencies such as Ethereum, and initial cryptocurrency offerings (ICOs), is finding a place to store them. Most of the hardware and digital wallets on the market will not support ICOs – they only work with an approved list of existing currencies.
It is possible to store most ICO tokens on MyEtherWallet, which is why many ICOs investors like it. Those investors also use MyEtherWalelt to store their new tokens on offline storage solutions – such as the TREZOR and the Nano S.
One reason why many ICOs will run on MyEtherWallet is that they are created with Ethereum and ERC-20. Many people forget that Ethereum is also an operating system. MyEtherWallet is basically an application that is designed to facilitate payment and storage through Ethereum.
ERC-20 is a set of standards that ICOs are supposed to meet. MyEthereum Wallet was designed to be ERC-20 compliant.
One of MyEtherWallet’s major functions is to facilitate conversion between different kinds of cryptocurrency. This is why many reviewers and users will describe MyEtherWallet as an interface; it like all digital wallets is designed to serve as an interface between different payment systems.
Therefore MyEtherWallet is really an interface for different kinds of cryptocurrencies and cryptocurrency ecosystems. Serious geeks love it because they can store a wide variety of altcoins and spend, transfer or sell them through the solution.
What you can do with MyEtherWallet
Here is what you can do with MyEtherWallet:
- Swap Ethereum, Bitcoins, Euros, Swiss Francs, ERC-20 compliant ICO tokens, and other currencies via affiliates. Many traders like MyEtherWallet because you can convert or sell some of the major fiat currencies through it.
- Store currencies on a Ledger Nano S or TREZOR hardware wallet.
- Create new digital wallets.
- Add digital wallets to websites and online stores.
- Send Ether and other cryptocurrencies to friends, family, associates, customers, clients, creditors, and other acquaintances.
- Store or ERC-20 compliant ICO tokens.
- Pay for Ethereum Smart contracts with Ethereum Gas.
- Network with other Ethereum users and creators and pay them for services.
Many people like MyEtherWallet because it provides more support including some technical services than some of the other products on the market. Despite the level of support, MyEtherWallet still has the feel of a do it yourself project. Even its’ website looks pretty amateurish and outdated which will put some users off.
What You Should Know about MyEtherWallet
Everybody that uses MyEtherWallet must recognize that it is a do it yourself solution. If you use it, you will have to create your own wallet and install it.
Persons that simply want a wallet to store altcoins in or move Ethereum around with might be better served by some of the readymade solutions such as TenX, Coinbase, and CEX.IO. Those wallets will allow you to store coins, although they will not give you as much control.
Something else that you must be aware of is that you will not be able to buy coins with MyEtherWallet. You will probably have to purchase currency through another wallet and transfer it to MyEtherWallet.
If you are not that proficient with website creation or new technologies, it would be a good idea to go with something that’s already set up. Also persons that are not very experienced in setting up cryptocurrency or Ethereum solutions might be well-advised something simpler.
Persons that plan to store a lot of cryptocurrency especially Ethereum in a hardware wallet would be well advised to check out MyEtherWallet. It is one of the few digital wallets compatible with popular hardware solutions like the TREZOR and Ledger’s Nano S.
MyEtherWallet Security Concerns
There are some security concerns about MyEtherWallet that every user should be aware of.
Numerous news stories have alleged that MyEtherWallet is very vulnerable to phishing scams. A phishing scam involves an email or social media post that contains malware designed to steal your altcoins.
The Ether Wallet scams are usually carried out with a message trying to get a user’s private key. Predators want the key so they can use it to gain access to your altcoins and transfer them to their accounts.
Quite a few of those scams involve ICOs, Cointelegraph alleged. Most of these phishing attacks were blocked or cleared up quickly but they have led to charges that MyEtherWallet’s security is not up to par.
Unsubstantiated charges and rumors that MyEtherWallet has been hacked have been floating around for some time. Even though MyEtherWallet’s creators have gone out of their way to deny those claims they keep resurfacing.
Persons that search message boards like Reddit and Steelmit will also find numerous posts from users that claim to have had funds stored in MyEtherWallet stolen. It is not clear how accurate these posts are but the concerns appear to be valid.
Another complaint that both reviewers and many users make is how easy it is for hackers to cripple MyEtherWallet. If these claims are true, pranksters have been able to shut down or disrupt MyEtherWallet accounts in the past.
There have also been allegations that MyEtherWallet has sent out false messages about security breaches. Like the other allegations, it is hard to know if this is just internet chatter or a real problem.
One reason for the security problems is that MyEtherWallet is an open-sourced project and a new piece technology. That means it is a work in progress, and there are a lot of bugs to be worked out. In an open sourced project, such as Linux, all the creators that work on it, seek bugs and problems and try to fix them.
A drawback to open-sourced Apps is that you often have to wait for flaws to get fixed. Another is that are security holes that the bad guys can easily take advantage of. Fortunately, a lot of developers are working on MyEtherWallet and trying to address these flaws.
Top Features at MyEtherWallet
Despite complaints, there are many features of MyEtherWallet that get good reviews. Some of the wallet’s most popular features include:
- CX Chrome browser plugin available. Note: this will not support the hardware wallets.
- There is an Android version of MyEtherWallet available but it is not found at GooglePlay. Instead you will have to download it through AppGeyser.
- Gives the users the ability to set your own Ether Gas and Gwei limits. That makes it easier to purchase Ethereum services.
- Easy set up.
- Will support popular hardware wallets including TREZOR and Ledger Nano. Note: it is not clear if MyEtherWallet will work with Nano Blue yet.
- Free and easy to find online.
- Will support any Ethereum and some other coins such as Bitcoin. Note: it is not clear which lessor tokens are supported.
- Ability to send coins to any user via the interface.
- Easy to use and install even for novices.
A Serious Solution
MyEtherWallet should be regarded as a serious solution for those interested in advanced cryptocurrency uses.
It would be best for persons that are intent on conducting business or e-commerce with Ethereum or Bitcoin, and those who are into initial cryptocurrency offerings. ICO fans will like MyEtherWallet because most of today’s offerings are ERC-20 compliant.
Be careful though because there is an increasing number of ICOs in new operating systems, such as NEO and Waves, out there. Those altcoins might not work in MyEtherWallet, and may require a specialized payment interface. One problem is that those tokens might be ERC-20 compliant.
Investors should store their ICO tokens outside the web, preferably in a hardware wallet such as TREZOR or Ledger Nano S. That makes MyEthereumWallet an ideal solution for ICO investors because it will transfer most tokens to TREZOR or Nano S.
Note: if you use the TREZOR you will have to download the MyEthereumWallet app for TREZOR to your wallet. See the Satoshi Labs website for the right version.
Where to Find MyEtherWallet
The best place to find this payment solution is at the MyEtherWallet website. The wallet there is the official variant and the latest version.
It is where the new wallets are first made available and where new features are first tested. The versions of MyEtherWallet found sites like GitHub are not always current. So be very careful when downloading them.
More importantly technical support for MyEtherWallet is available at the website. If you have any sort of problem with the wallet or any questions about it, this is the place to look for answers.
How to Protect Yourself with MyEtherWallet
Always remember that you will be responsible for your own security with MyEtherWallet. There is no professional security department or protocols as with commercial wallets like Coinbase.
That means you will be responsible for keeping your keys, private and for implementing protection against hackers and other threats. The MyEtherWallet team will not reset passwords or reverse transactions if you get hacked. You will have to take care of all that stuff yourself because they are unable to access accounts.
This provides an added level of privacy and security but it also increases the risk. Part of the reason for all the complaints about MyEtherWallet’s security is that many people are not used to implementing their own defense measures. These individuals fail to take basic precautions, get hacked and blame MyEtherWallet.
If you are a forgetful or lazy person, MyEtherWallet might not be for you because you will have to do more work. On the other hand, if you like handling stuff yourself then MyEtherWallet might be a better solution for you.
Who Should Use MyEtherWallet
MyEtherWallet is an excellent solution for Ethereum Geeks, ICO investors, and other serious cryptocurrency users. It is definitely a great tool for hands on users that want more control over their finances and a high level of privacy.
Persons that want an evolving open-sourced solution will definitely like MyEtherWallet. Those that want everything done for them should turn to one of the commercial wallets or exchanges.
A good way to decide if MyEtherWallet is for you is to go to its’ website and build a wallet. If you enjoy creating a Wallet, you will like this solution. Persons that do not like creating a wallet should stick with in the box solutions.
Anybody that wants to understand the technology behind Ethereum, ER-20 and cryptocurrency should give MyEtherWallet a whirl. It is a great tool for learning how Ethereum works and understanding its capabilities, which are vast and highly misunderstood.
Persons who are interested in creating or investing in ICOs should definitely experiment with MyEtherWallet. It can provide an excellent tool for storing, transmitting and those instruments.
Anybody who wants to take an advanced course in cryptocurrency investment and payment should download MyEtherWallet and play around with it. This solution is a great introduction to the world of Ethereum and its vast possibilities.