Bitcoin Core gives you increased security and privacy at a cost. You need to take responsibility for the security of your bitcoins, meet higher minimum system requirements, and beware of some possible problems.
Wallet Responsibility Checklist
Bitcoin Core puts you in charge of your wallet, which means your bitcoins are at risk unless you complete certain tasks:
- Backup your keys
- Make sure your wallet is secure
- Setup an offline wallet (cold storage) for significant amounts of bitcoins
- Watch for security notifications
- Allow your heirs to receive your bitcoins if you die or become incapacitated
If you need help with any step, please ask for assistance in any of Bitcoin’s friendly forums or live chatrooms.
- Legal: Bitcoin use is prohibited or restricted in some areas.
- Bandwidth limits: Some Internet plans will charge an additional amount for any excess upload bandwidth used that isn’t included in the plan. Worse, some providers may terminate your connection without warning because of overuse. We advise that you check whether your Internet connection is subjected to such limitations and monitor your bandwidth use so that you can stop Bitcoin Core before you reach your upload limit.
- Anti-virus: Several people have placed parts of known computer viruses in the Bitcoin block chain. This block chain data can’t infect your computer, but some anti-virus programs quarantine the data anyway, making it more difficult to run Bitcoin Core. This problem mostly affects computers running Windows.
- Attack target: Bitcoin Core powers the Bitcoin peer-to-peer network, so people who want to disrupt the network may attack Bitcoin Core users in ways that will affect other things you do with your computer, such as an attack that limits your available download bandwidth.