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Another question about paper wallets...



  • I understand that paper wallets are the most secure form of coin storage. I want to move my coins over to paper storage, and begin to treat them as a retirement account and methodically add to them. My hope is that I can stop spending as much time on worrying about the current state of the markets, and just let time do what I believe time will do for these coins.

    I have one hang up with paper wallets which I just can’t seem to shake. I actually just moved all of my coins back into my QT wallet, and sent them back to my encrypted address until I can get this answered.

    If I download a paper wallet generator, and run it as I should (from a computer with a fresh non-windows OS, which has never been and never will be connected to the internet), what is stopping someone from downloading the same paper wallet generator at some point, and it populating the same Public/Private key combo for them that it did for me?

    I know that this may be a foolish question to someone who understands this stuff a lot more than I do, but to me, it seems like a genuine concern.

    I understand that the odds of this happening are astronomically low using a 28 character key which consists of number and letters including the differences with capitalization. I get it… What I can’t get past is this: what if crypto does what we all hope that it does. What if it truly goes mainstream, and FTC is used to transact freely between individuals, businesses, merchants, etc. We are commonly advised to create a new receiving address with each incoming transaction, right? Let’s say I throw a stack of FTC on a paper wallet, and leave it to my great great great grandchildren. Don’t you think that someone would have randomly generated my key combination by that point?

    If what I am saying is absolutely false, please explain to me more clearly. I truly want to believe in cold storage, but for now, it seems to me that there is too much of a risk using one of these random key generators. I understand that it may be a 1 in a billion chance that this could ever happen…but that is too risky…


  • Moderators

    Theoretically it is possible to generate the same private key …the time it would take is in the millions of years so you shouldn’t worry.


  • Regular Member

    As Acid said above, technically its possible to generate the same private key twice but the odds are so small its considered “impossible”. To add to that, you have the same odds using the QT wallet as you do a paper wallet generator.

    The numbers crypto uses are huge, absolutely enormous. They are so large, in fact, that most people have difficulty understanding just how massive they are. One way I was explained was to picture a handful of sand. Look at each grain of sand. How many must there be in your hand? A lot right? Now picture a bucket of sand, picture a truck load, there are a LOT of grains, right? Now picture every grain of sand on EVERY beach in the world plus every grain of sand under all the oceans. If every grain of sand was its own Earth, with its own beaches and sand, then if you added up all these grains of sand on all these beaches on all these worlds… thats how many private keys there are. LOTS


 

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