- Install the app
- Create and Safely Record Your 24-Word Mnemonic
- Choose a PIN for the Device
- Set up 2FA
- Best Practices for Creating a New Wallet
Install the app
Blockstream Green apps can be accessed through the following operating systems and apps:
|Operating Systems Supported||Native Applications|
|Android||Blockstream Green Android Wallet|
|iOS||Blockstream Green iOS Wallet|
Each of our apps can also be used on Bitcoin’s testnet, which we recommend for testing new features or becoming accustomed with the setup process to avoid accidental loss of coins.
Create and Safely Record Your 24-Word Mnemonic
After you’ve installed the app, you’ll have the option to log in with an existing mnemonic, or create a new wallet. To start, make sure the Bitcoin network is selected and click on
Create New Wallet.
At this point, the app will generate a 24-word mnemonic to function as a backup login method for your wallet. (Our wallets use the BIP39 standard for generating your mnemonic and BIP32 to derive private keys from that mnemonic).
Your mnemonic is the single most important piece of information associated with your wallet.
You must write it down somewhere safe and secret - it’s your ultimate backup.
It must be kept safe and accessible because if your app gets uninstalled, or your device gets lost or stolen, or you forget your PIN, or your PIN gets reset, then your mnemonic will let you access your coins again. Even if we at Blockstream Green get shut down or disappear, you can still retain control of your coins as long as you have your mnemonic.
It must be kept secret because if someone else can figure out or steal your mnemonic, they may be able to steal your coins (although if you have 2FA set up, they will need to bypass that as well…but we’ll cover that in the Two-Factor authentication section).
To ensure that you safely recorded your mnemonic, you will be prompted to re-enter several of the words in the correct order.
And remember: we don’t store your mnemonic in the Blockstream Green database, so we are not able to tell what it is if you lose it.
It is also crucial to never send your mnemonic over email or text to anyone (including Blockstream Green support). Doing so can expose your mnemonic to theft, and put your coins at risk. If you ever forget and accidentally do this, we urge you to create a brand new wallet as soon as possible and move your coins to that new wallet.
Choose a PIN for the Device
After you have recorded and confirmed your mnemonic, you will be able to choose a PIN. This is a 6 digit number that can be used to quickly access your wallet on that device.
In addition to the PIN you may also use iOS TouchID or Android’s Authentication to ease access to the wallet you just created or restored. You can set this up from settings.
In general it is important to keep your PIN safe and secret. If it is lost, your only option to re-access your wallet will be through your mnemonic.
Your PIN is specific to the device that it is created on. It is possible to access your wallet from multiple devices by using your mnemonic, but you will create a separate PIN for each device, so they might not be the same.
As a security feature, your device will reset your PIN if you or someone else enters the wrong PIN three times in a row. This is to prevent a malicious party from continually guessing until they get your PIN right.
If your PIN is reset, you will need to enter your mnemonic through
Restore Green Wallet on the “Onboarding” screen, which will allow you to create a new PIN for that device.
Set up 2FA
Finally, after you have recorded and confirmed your mnemonic and set your PIN, you will be prompted to choose a 2FA method. A 2FA method is a second layer of security that a wallet’s owner must confirm before sending coins or making other critical changes in settings.
While optional, we urge you to activate at least one 2FA method.
Ideally, you should add at least 2 different 2FA options.
For various reasons, our users sometimes lose access to one of their 2FA methods, and this can be very inconvenient. You can mitigate this risk by having at least 2 different 2FA methods in place. This way, if you suddenly lose access to one, you can still retain full access to your wallet, and then reset the lost 2FA method (for more details on this, see the section Two-Factor authentication).
Using 2FA is simple: whenever you take an action that requires 2FA authorization (sending a transaction, or changing your 2FA settings), you will confirm the action by providing a confirmation code that you will receive via your preferred 2FA method.
2FA is most secure when it is separated from the wallet device.
Best Practices for Creating a New Wallet
Creating a wallet for the first time is a straightforward process, but there are a couple of common mistakes that new Bitcoin users make.
The first is not properly recording their mnemonic right at the beginning. Though it might be inconvenient at the time, and you might be excited to use the wallet immediately, it is very important to take the time to properly record your mnemonic and safely store it.
Some other wallets allow users to start transacting without recording their mnemonic. While this might seem OK, we believe that this is risky and irresponsible.
It is very easy for users to start accepting and sending bitcoins and delay properly recording their mnemonic. Then, when something goes wrong in the future (their phone breaks, the PIN is entered incorrectly, etc), they suddenly lose access to their their coins.
Please take this process very seriously, and give it the time and attention that it needs.
The other error that some people make is using a throw-away email address for their 2FA. This can also result in loss of coins! Unless you immediately create more permanent alternative 2FA methods (which we recommend anyway), losing access to your email can be very inconvenient. Make sure you use an email address that you will be able to access in the future.
Another situation to be aware of is creating a new wallet while there is an existing wallet on the app. You will be allowed to create as many wallets as you like on your Blockstream Green app, but it can only store one PIN at a time. This means that any new wallets won’t allow PIN access on that device, and in the future must be logged into using the full mnemonic. If you wish to create a new wallet, and have your app store a PIN for the new one, you will need to first disable the PIN on the original wallet. You can do this by entering an incorrect PIN 3 times in a row, or from settings after you have logged in.