If you are interested in the crypto world, you must already have heard about the concept of crypto wallets, thanks to which you can store (more or less) securely your various assets.
Whereas physical money exists in the form of actual coins and bank notes or may be used to fill a bank account, cryptocurrencies don’t work in the same way. Since most of them are entirely dematerialized, crypto coins don’t subscribe to the same rules as traditional currencies (such as Euros or US Dollars) do. This is the reason why they rely on completely different storage solutions which, as it happens, offer a wider choice. Thus, based on how you want to use your tokens, some options may be more beneficial than others. Additionally, not all crypto assets share the same wallets.
Let’s look further into the various possibilities at our disposal in terms of Litecoin wallets.
What is Litecoin?
Before we start wondering how to best store Litecoin, a few words about the currency itself are in order.
Based on the Bitcoin protocol, Litecoin is another decentralized (which functions without a central authority) cryptocurrency that allows its users to carry out transactions very quickly and with much lower fees. As we write these lines (at the end of February 2020), it occupies rank 7 of the market cap. While it certainly is much less famous than Bitcoin, Litecoin is often considered to be superior to its bigger brother when it comes to practicality. Litecoin’s blockchain generates blocks more frequently and confirms transactions twice as fast as the original protocol does.
Litecoin also sets itself apart due to the overall number of tokens that will eventually be generated: 84 million, as opposed to Bitcoin’s 21 million.
This currency is therefore experiencing an interesting expansion, driving more and more people to buy Litecoin.
What are the different Litecoin wallet options?
The main reason why a debate exists as to which Litecoin wallet is best, is that there are several options available. As we explained in our introduction, their characteristics do vary and, based on individuals, there may not be an absolute answer to that question. The strength of these solutions perhaps resides in their propensity to lend themselves to one type of use rather than another instead.
What you need to remember when it comes to selecting your Litecoin wallet is the importance of the storage method for your private key actually being private. Some wallets (especially those put at your disposal by trading platforms) store this key online and have full control over it. Others have you write down your key and keep it somewhere secure, where you will be able to refer to it without running the risk of losing it. Finally, some wallets may store your private key directly onto a device in your possession, but the slightest vulnerability will compromise the security of your assets.
Here are, in more detail, the various types of Litecoin wallets you may find along with their respective characteristics.
Software-type Litecoin wallets need to be installed on a computer’s hard drive. Offering relatively satisfactory levels of security, Desktop wallets are often cited as an interesting compromise for those who wish to protect their assets as much as possible all while being able to use them for various purposes.
Desktop wallets store the private key onto your computer. In principle, if the latter is correctly protected against potential viruses, keyloggers, malware and other threats, it should not be in any danger and you won’t run the risk of losing it. For better security, you could even consider entirely dedicating a computer to your cryptographic use to avoid it becoming compromised, which could always happen through normal use.
Having the exclusive control over your own private keys is the main benefit of desktop wallets, which also happen to be free (unlike physical wallets).
Originally widely utilized for the Bitcoin currency, the Electrum LTC wallet is a lighter client that allows investors to store their Litecoin safely without having to download the entire blockchain. The official Litecoin wallet, Litecoin Core, requires the latter to be permanently synced and for the computer to become a node in and of itself.
Electrum LTC, as any good desktop wallet should, stores the encrypted keys onto your hard drive rather than on its own servers. Its many functions allow it to adapt to the needs of various user profiles.
This multi-currency wallet is ideal for those looking to store Litecoin and allows users to handle over 300 cryptocurrencies from one single software. Atomic Wallet puts forward a level of security that’s as high as it can get on a connected computer. This means that you are responsible for your own private key and that all your transaction-related data will remain permanently crypted. This Litecoin wallet therefore preserves your anonymity.
It supports the Challengy and ShapeShift systems. The former was co-founded by the creator of Atomic Wallet and, together with the latter, provides the user with excellent options to send and receive currencies directly from their wallet.
The crypto wallet Jaxx boasts an excellent reputation and offers a decent level of security while sporting many useful functionalities. Of course, your keys are also stored locally, the service is available across several platforms and it enjoys a lively forum. Jaxx is originally a desktop wallet, but it has a web and a mobile version too.
Mobile wallets are becoming ever more popular, because they provide users with a “happy medium” between online wallets and hardware wallets. While online solutions are instantly compatible with exchanges, physical wallets store your assets externally, and therefore more securely. In other words, Android or iOS wallets have a lot in common with desktop-type options while offering better portability.
Do keep in mind that, as they rely on an Internet connection, mobile wallets are just as susceptible to hacking as desktop wallets are. To this threat, you should add the risk of losing your smartphone or it being stolen.
Mobile solutions are classified as “hot wallets” and should therefore not be entrusted with too many tokens.
LoafWallet (or Litewallet)
Originally deployed for iOS, LoafWallet is now also available as an Android Wallet and might just be the best mobile solution on that interface. Developed by the Litecoin Association, LoafWallet is a fork that came from the widely respected BreadWallet, which many users rely on to store their Bitcoin. Also called Litewallet, it offers various functionalities, such as the possibility to send Litecoin to someone at the touch of a button. Its security profile is also very convincing.
In its Android and iOS wallet versions, Jaxx provides a clear, easy-to-navigate interface, making it the ideal choice for beginners. This virtual wallet is free, supports over 90 currencies, allows users to trade directly from their smartphone and offers real-time access to the market cap, which illustrates the fluctuations of the various currencies. Login-free, the application is praised for its great usability. Jaxx is very useful for those who wish to get started with small-scale trading or to carry out everyday transactions. However, it is recommended to only use it to store very little Litecoin.
Available in the form of a desktop and a mobile wallet, Guarda also sports a Google Chrome extension. The keys are stored directly onto the device you’re using so that no third party may have access to them, unless, once again, if your phone gets hacked or stolen. Among other things, Guarda is a Litecoin wallet from which you may purchase cryptocurrency using a credit or debit card. An e-wallet option is also available to simplify everyday use.
Online wallet or Hot wallet
Online Litecoin wallets have the benefit of being easy to set up, to offer constant access from practically any terminal and to be free (most of the time). With no installation or configuration necessary, “hot wallets” don’t require users to save any particular information either.
It is, however, the solution with the most drawbacks. Online wallets are often put at your disposal by exchanges which remain entirely in charge of both the private keys and the tokens stored on their servers. They undergo frequent attacks from hackers and have clearly proven that they are the least secure way to store your coins.
Developed especially for Litecoin, this Litecoin wallet is one of the safest open source wallet services in its category. Access is encrypted thanks to a password which never goes through LiteVault’s servers. Every time a transaction is carried out, the key is stored in the memory of the browser. The key itself is stored onto LiteVault’s server, though.
For European investors who absolutely insist on using an online solution, LiteBit is probably among the better options. Here again, their clients’ private keys are stored and managed by Litebit. However, this wallet stands out due to its “cold storage” solution to keep their funds secure. This means that your tokens are stored offline, thus limiting disastrous consequences in the event of a cyber attack. Two-factor authentication is also a much-appreciated bonus.
Cold wallets or Physical wallets
Physical Litecoin wallets are the most highly secure solution to store your Litecoin. Especially recommended for those users who need to protect large quantities of tokens, this option never allows your private key to come into contact with the Internet. When a transaction is validated, everything is handled straight from the device to ensure maximum security.
As the user is the only person in charge of their assets, the only true risk remains a potential theft of the device. And even in that case, a PIN number and sometimes two-factor authentication at least protect the contents of the cold wallet.
Resembling USB flash drives, Ledger’s wallets are some of the most popular on the market. The Nano S model offers excellent value for money and is compatible with over 1,000 cryptocurrencies, including Litecoin, of course. The Nano X model can handle as many as 100 cryptocurrencies at once and supports Bluetooth technology.
Another brand many users love is Trezor, and more specifically its T model, which does boast many advantages. Thanks to its touch-screen, this device sports an extremely fast processor and requires manual confirmation for each transaction. The Trezor Model T is a robust solution which will protect your assets just as well as the Ledger products would. The earlier model, the Trezor One, is an excellent alternative for those who are new to the crypto scene.