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Bitcoin Paper Wallets - Learn about secret keys and public keys

What is a Bitcoin paper wallet?

A Bitcoin paper wallet is a relatively secure way to store your Bitcoins. Since the code for your Bitcoins are not online, your money is not at risk of being hacked. There is one exception as to how it can be hacked, but we will discuss that at the end of this article. Before discussing how to make a paper wallet lets look at one and see what they contain.

The image below is a Bitcoin paper wallet. It has two codes on it, a public (shared code) and a private key. The public key has the address for your wallet in two forms. The QR code and the actual alphanumeric code. Both the QR code and alphanumeric code contain the same information about your public key. This is the address someone would use to send money to your wallet or the address you would use to deposit money in your paper wallet. You can make a paper wallet with a number of tools. However, one site you can practice on is The site is self explanatory and lets you generate paper wallets like the one below. However, make sure you go offline when you do create the paper wallet and that there is no spyware on your computer.

Bitcoin paper wallets - Learn about public keys and private keys

There are a number of apps you can use to send Bitcoins. However, do your homework and make sure it is a from a reliable company. Only use your secret key to send Bitcoins and NEVER SHARE YOUR SECRET KEY with anyone. Only type in your secret key to apps your FULLY trust. You can either type in the address or scan it with the QR code scanner on your mobile phone. Then you type in the amount you want to send and that amount is deposited sent to the address you choose to send it to (i.e. another public key). You can check the amount in your paper wallet by going to a site like (see image below)

Checking amount of Bitcoin in a paper wallet
By typing in your public key you can find out the amount of Bitcoin in your paper wallet

When you hit the search key the site will then generate a summary of your account. Notice in the example below the account has zero Bitcoins (BTC).

Bitcoin paper wallet - Only share your public key. Never give anyone the secret key!!!
Bitcoin wallet account summary

There are a couple key points to remember.

1. Never share your secret key with anyone. Once someone has your secret key they can steal your Bitcoins and there is currently no way to get your money back.

2. You can share your public key. That is the way people can send you Bitcoins.

3. Whether you are sending or receiving Bitcoins make sure you type in the right public key address.

4. Finally, if you do use a paper wallet be sure that you generate the wallet with your computer offline and that there is no spyware on your computer.

NOTICE: We do not endorse or recommend any specific apps or websites. There is risk when using any online service or app. Venture Home News, LLC is not responsible for any losses or damages related to any of the services, apps or techniques mentioned in this article.

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