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What is Metamask? Everything you need to know about this wallet.

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The storage of cryptocurrencies is of great importance and relevance especially at a time when the industry is witnessing a rapid mushrooming of products and services. MetaMask is one of the world’s most popular web wallets that is used to interact with the Ethereum network.

Created in 2016 by the blockchain software firm, ConsenSys, this web wallet enables users to store and control account keys, disclose transactions, send and receive Ethereum-based crypto-asset and tokens.

Metamask also allows users to securely connect to various decentralized applications [DApps] via compatible web browsers or the mobile app’s built-in browser without running a full Ethereum node.

In short, the main objective of MetaMask is to make Ethereum as seamless to use as many people as possible.

How to create a wallet in Metamask?

Follow the steps to successfully create your very own MetaMask account:

Step1: You will need to first install the MetaMask extension for Google Chrome, Firefox, Brave, and Edge browsers to create a new wallet. You can either visit here or search for ‘Metamask extension’ using your desired search engine.

download-install-metamask

Step2: After successful installation of the extension, next comes the creation of the account. For this, all you need to do is click on the MetaMask icon located in the upper right corner to open the extension. Then select ‘Continue’. Users will now be asked to create a new password. Following the creation of a strong password, proceed by clicking ‘Create’.

Moving forward, select ‘Next’ and accept the ‘Terms of Use’. Then Click Reveal secret words, which will show you a 12-word seed phrase. Make sure you store the seed words in a safe place. Then click ‘Next’

After authenticating your secret phrase by selecting the previously generated phrase, select ‘Confirm’.

Your MetaMask account is created.

How to Add New Tokens?

Here are the steps that you need to follow if your preferred tokens are not already listed. Note that you can use these steps to add any ERC20 token:

add-token-metamask

Step 1: Firstly, select the tokens that you desire and click ‘Add Token’.

Step 2: Following this, enter Token Contract Address, Token Symbol, and Decimals of Precision. For this visit the EtherScan.io website. On the upper right corner of the dashboard, click on ‘Tokens’. You will see a drop down menu. Click ‘View Tokens’. Then click on the token that you want to add.

Step 3: After entering the Token Contract Address into MetaMask, Token Symbol and Decimals of Precision, press ‘Add Token’. Now you have added the token of your preference. You can easily check the balance on your account.

Is Metamask safe?

MetaMask is a web-based wallet that has not suffered any security breaches such as hacking and losses in terms of cryptocurrency coins in its lifetime. All the keys and data are securely stored in the browser of the users.

However, since it is not a cloud based solution, hence if a user breaks his/her device,or the device  is lost, stolen, or has data corruption, there is no way for the MetaMask Support team to recover this. The only way to recover the account is using the 12-word seed phrase.

How to Add Binance Smart Chain in Metamask?

Despite the fact that MetaMask is a go-to platform to access Ethereum landscape, users can easily configure it to engage with Binance Smart Chain. Here’s how it can be done:

Metamask-add-network

Step 1: Firstly, under the ‘My Accounts’ dropdown menu of your MetaMask account, select ‘Settings’.

Step 2: Secondly, On the settings page, go to the ‘Networks’ menu located on the extreme left side.

Step 3: To manually add the Binance Smart Chain one, you need to select ‘Add Network’ in the top-right corner. To use MetaMask to transfer BNB or any other Binance Smart Chain tokens you will need to fill in all the required spaces for the mainnet as following:

  • Network Name- Smart Chain
  • New RPC URL- https://bsc-dataseed.binance.org/
  • ChainID- 56
  • Symbol- BNB
  • Block Explorer URL- https://bscscan.com

You can also use the testnet, in which case, follow the steps below:

  • Network Name- Smart Chain – Testnet
  • New RPC URL- https://data-seed-prebsc-1-s1.binance.org:8545/
  • ChainID- 97
  •  Symbol- BNB
  • Block Explorer URL- https://testnet.bscscan.com

After you have clicked on ‘Save the Network’ and return to the main menu, you will be able to see that the network has automatically been adjusted to the one you just entered. Secondly, all the units will no longer be denominated in terms of ETH, but will rather be in BNB.

MetaMask vs MyEtherWallet

MyEtherWallet is another storage service that has become popular over the years in the Ethereum ecosystem. Let’s look at how the MetaMask and MyEtherWallet functions.

  1. MetaMask uses ‘Infura’ to interact with the Ethereum network. While users need not set up nodes, but the computer runs the node on behalf. Meaning, in MetaMask, there is a need for a middleman or a third-party to connect to the network. On the other hand, MyEtherWallet eliminates the need for a trusted middleman. Instead, it is the application creator that has full control, while the wallet represents a full node wallet.
  2. MetaMask is a hot storage wallet and hence the tokens are stored only on online platforms. MyEtherWallet is both an online as well as an offline storage wallet. Therefore, users can store their Ethereum tokens on their offline as well as an online device.
  3. In terms of security, MetaMask has not suffered any breaches as noted earlier. It leverages a security mechanism known as ‘Den’ This system essentially stores encrypted private keys locally in a secure way. In the case of MyEtherWallet, it is the user who has to take the charge. Here, offline wallet creation might not be as seamless and convenient as the online browser wallet creation and transaction.
  4. MetaMask is available in several browsers like Google Chrome, Firefox, Brave, and Edge. It stores the wallet keys on the browser. This allows its users to have better control over their public and private keys. MyEtherWallet also functions similarly. In addition, it also allows users to store the keys offline.

Conclusion

 Metamask happens to be one of the most secure wallets in the Ethereum ecosystem. It has slowly but steadily expanded its footprint, especially towards the Binance ecosystem tokens as well. This cryptocurrency wallet developed as a browser extension has been touted as useful while interacting with the world of decentralized finance [DeFi] and decentralized applications [DApps] in general.

Despite being a torchbearer of the core values of decentralization, it is as secure as the person using it, since it is the users that are in full control of the vault.

 

 

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