For general software make users less in need find out about private key and how they operate. Even so, most users eventually will contact with the private key, and this often provides a result not satisfactory.
A basic understanding of the key individuals to help prevent the loss of money and other risks, it can also provide useful insights about how Bitcoin work.
Bitcoin: safety notification system
Although Bitcoin is known as a payment system, behind it all are running a security notification system built on the Internet. Instead of forwarding the email, text or web page, the network of Bitcoin will handle the notice of value is called the transaction. private key plays a central role in the verification of this message, identify the sender and the receiver and secure network.
An example illustrating the subject of the private key. Imagine Alice wants to pay for Bob 10 bitcoin (BTC). You start by creating a transaction determined Bob who was charged and 10 BTC is the amount to be transferred. Alice then played this transaction for all users of the network of Bitcoin.
When using this system, Alice must face two basic issues. First, she needs a way to identify both himself and Bob in the transaction. Alice could not use a central agency such as a registration or your email service provider to the Government because that would conflict with the nature of the hierarchy, not third-party news of Bitcoin. Second, Alice needed a way to prevent anyone else from changing their transaction and forge deals with her name.
Bitcoin solves these problems through a system called public key encryption. This system used two pieces of information to authenticate the message. The public key that identifies the sender or recipient, and can be distributed to others. The individual key is used with a public key to generate a message signature could not be removed. The individual key must be kept secret. Public key and individuals are connected to mathematics.
With the concept of this overview, here are six things about a private key to note when you use the Bitcoin.
1. Private key is only a figure
Private key Bitcoin is simply a number between one and about 1077. This seems not to have many options, but for practical purposes it is infinite.
If you can handle a trillion individual locks per second, it will take time to fold a million times the age of the universe to count them all. Even worse, just listed this course has consumed more of the Sun's energy output in 32 years. The key to this vast space plays a fundamental role in the protection of the network of Bitcoin.
Because private key that contains multiple digits when expressed as a decimal number, an alternate format is called the format Type For (WIF) was born. This format beginning with the number "5" and contains a sequence of letters and numbers.
2. The transactions were reported to be signed with the private key
To prevent tampering, Bitcoin requires each transaction must have a digital signature. This signature is a private key is just a number is chosen from a very large range. Software for generating a signature by mathematical processing a transaction along with the private key correctly.
This system works because anyone with a transaction and its signature can verify the authenticity of a message. However, a transaction signature actually is impossible to forge. The only way to create a valid signature for a particular transaction is using personal keywords correctly.
Unlike conventional signatures, you can write on the cheque, a transaction signature changes if the transaction changes a bit. How the signature unpredictable changes, ensure that only one person owns a key individual who can provide the correct signature.
3. Anyone who knows your private key that can steal your funds
Any transaction carries valid signatures will be accepted by the network of Bitcoin. At the same time, any person who owns a private key that can generate a valid transaction. Two things made this together means that someone just said your private key that can steal.
Many roads are open for thieves of private key. Two of the most common way is media and communication channels. For this reason, the need to exercise caution when storing or transmitting the private key.
Software for individual courses often contains within a "file for" on the main hard drive. For often put this file in a standard folder, are known, making it become the target of a malicious software targeting the bitcoin.
To combat this threat, the software for providing the option to encrypt the file for. Any attacker would have access to the file for you will need to decrypt it. The difficulty in doing this depends on the quality and strength of the encryption password is being used. For files can be encrypted on many software for by adding a password.
Despite backing for is a good idea, but they could make the leak the private key. For example, you can save a backup copy of the software for the cloud storage service like Dropbox. However, anyone with the ability to view online this backup (that's surprising is that there can be a long list) will be able to steal a portion or all of your money. A similar problem can occur through the email backups for yourself or leave a paper wallet in the House. Encryption can reduce the risk, but does not remove it completely.
4. The address is taken from a public key which itself was drawn from private key
Public key Bitcoin is collected by applying a set of Booleans are clearly identified through Elliptic Curve Cryptography (ECC), to a private key. Like a private key, a public key is simply a very large number.
The relationship between the private key and a public key as an example of a trapdoor mathematical function easily done in one direction, but the fact it could not comply with a direction to the contrary. Calculated according to the directions of the sole is located in the center of the security model of the Bitcoin.
Like the private key may be shortened to make them easy to use can be with screen and keyboard than the public key. A guide to the application of a multiple-step transition to a public key. This creates a string of text and numbers, starting with the number "1".
Note that network is not required at any given time in creating a personal or address key respectively. Each computer on the network of Bitcoin both knows about the mathematical relationship between the public key and private key. This allows each participant to choose individual courses and signed independent deals with the network of Bitcoin. The number of the giant private key to ensure that any locks would be the correct choice will be unique.
5. The security depends on the choice of a good personal
Knowledge of the private key is the only verification required to spend funds from Bitcoin address. So, the key individuals should be kept secret. However, careless choice a personal key that can lead to the problem of theft as easy as being accidental dispersal of it.
6. Private key (to a certain extent) can bring
In large part, the software for hiding the creation process, use and storage of personal course. However, individual courses may become apparent over time. When this happens, the individual courses and understand how they interact with certain software will become important.
For the paper expresses the most common route by which the individual performed outside the key for the software. Although they have many formats, the essential features of any such paper are the key individuals are in.
Support the use of the private key is created on the outside are very different between applications for. For example, the private key is entered into the Electrum and Armory is not stored in the backup restore the future by using the proposed conduct and the most popular. Similarly, private key entry into MultiBit changes how for it related to the change of address.
Bitcoin can be considered an open information system are secured with public key encryption. In contrast with other systems are protected by a username and password login, Bitcoin is protected by the digital signature was created by the personal lock only. This unique access point placed a very high value on the creation, use, and storage of personal course safely.