Getting Started with Signum

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New accounts are created within software wallets.  The software interacts with Signum’s public ledger to facilitate the on-chain movement of Signa and other information from one account to another.  Software is available for personal computers as well as mobile devices.  Packages are available for Windows, macOS, Linux, Docker, iOS, and Android.

Signum wallets do not contain Signa.  Signa exists only on the distributed public ledger and is independent of any specific software installation.  If equipment fails, access to an account is restorable with a fresh software installation as long as the passphrase is known.  For this reason, maintain a record of passphrases in some form external to the equipment on which the software is installed.

The most secure and private way to interact with Signum is with Signum Node installed on a local computer that is secure from intrusion.  Signum Node downloads and validates a complete copy of the blockchain, enforces all network protocols, and contributes to security and decentralization whenever it is running.  Thin clients, those nodes that do not maintain a copy of the blockchain such as Phoenix and BTDEX, operate by connecting to synchronized nodes remotely.

Only use Signum’s official software.  Signum’s official software is open-source under a GPL license, protected by a multi-signature signing process, and frequently upgraded to make the features of the Signum network more fully accessible.

In general, do not use online wallets.  These are not official, even if they use official software.  They do not conform to Signum’s vision for a fully decentralized and ‘trustless’ system because they are controlled by third parties and require you to enter a passphrase into an online form.  There is no way to know that the passphrase is not being recorded.  They can be useful in certain circumstances, but only for low-value accounts or in read-only mode.  To use any software in read-only mode, enter an account address rather than a passphrase.

    Additional Information:

    For additional security, transactions can be signed on a disconnected device so that passphrases are never exposed to the internet.  For more information, see Offline Transaction Signing.

    Passphrases are not included when a transaction is broadcast to the network.  Only a single-use digital signature is included.  Using cryptography, it can be derived from this signature that the transaction was authorized by the owner of the account that created it.  However, the actual passphrase cannot be derived from the signature.

    Although Signum is not technically a privacy coin or platform, it is inherently private.  There are no records that relate a public address to a particular account holder in a personally identifiable way.  Personal information is only disclosed if an account holder chooses to disclose it in the ordinary course of business, such as when ordering a product.  One way to enhance privacy is to maintain separate accounts for different purposes.

    Signum Node

    The software package for operating a synchronized node.  ( Enforces protocol )

    BTDEX

    Easy-to-use all-in-one package for plotting, mining, and essential wallet functions.

    Accounts

    Signum accounts are accessed by a single passphrase that must be carefully protected.

    Online Wallets

    Third parties control online wallets so they cannot be considered secure for any purpose.

    Passphrases

    Passphrases should never be entered into any online form.

    Reserve a Signum Account

    If you already have a Signum account, enter the passphrase and skip the remainder of this section.  Otherwise, reserve an account as follows:

    To reserve a Signum account, follow the prompts in your chosen software.  The process will automatically generate a secure passphrase.  This passphrase is the only detail that controls access to the account.  If this passphrase is lost, the associated account will no longer have value because it cannot be accessed without the associated passphrase.  It is the responsibility of the account holder to protect the passphrase.

    Any string of characters can serve as a passphrase, but a long random passphrase is the best way to protect an account.  Signum Node automatically generates randomized passphrases that provide sufficient protection.  Do not change the automatically generated passphrase without a complete understanding of entropy and cryptography.  Without this understanding, a self-composed passphrase may appear to be sufficient when it is, in reality, easily discoverable.

    Passphrases are immutable after completing the account setup process.

    For a convenient form to record your passphrase, click here:  Passphrase-Record

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