Have you ever thought of using Decentralized Finance (DeFi) applications? Most crypto enthusiasts use an Ethereum Wallet. But you’ll need to make sure that it’s web-based and has no issue connecting to the internet.
That’s where Metamask comes in. This ethereum wallet is a browser extension that you can use to connect to a web-based DeFi and you can get it for Mozilla Firefox and Google Chrome extension.
In the development community, security, ease of use and self custody is paramount with this wallet.
We’re going to review MetaMask to decide if it really is the best cryptocurrency wallet out there.
We’ll talk about whether trading cryptocurrency is the right online business for you.
At the end, I’ll answer some of the most frequently asked questions regarding MetaMask and cryptocurrency wallets in general.
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Table of Contents
MetaMask Wallet Review:
Metamask uses an open source software wallet that nobody except the owner can access the data, not even Metamask. You’ll also have a private key for your ethereum contract address save to your local browser.
And since the Metamask wallet is open-source, the team can make inspect modification offered by the development community to improve its functionality.
Metamask is made up of an 8-10 member development team and is funded by a well-known company in the ethereum community named Consensys.
For the time being, Metamask is free. However, they soon may add a paid service for their heavier users. Needless to say, Metamask is a favorite among DeFi ethereum wallets.
Since the advent of popular mobile wallets (Argent, Dharma, etc), the favorite is still Metamask since it’s supported by all DeFi applications. Mobile wallets must still use web applications using the WalletConnect protocol which isn’t supported by all apps.
Basically, there are many other applications using Metamask because they’re less restrictive than a mobile wallet.
With all the Google Chrome extension downloads (over 1 Million) and its 4-star rating, you can see that people love to use Metamask Crypto Wallet.
What Are Some Core Features Of Metamask?
Metamask makes Ethereum transactions everywhere a lot easier. With more advanced features, it allows users to send and receive transactions with just a couple of clicks of the mouse.
Adjustable gas fees
In contrast to competing ethereum wallets, like Argent Wallet, which look to pigeon hold people with gas fees for example, Metamask allows users to set fees based on the level of need. Their wallet also features the ability to apply gas fees at a granular level
Even though you may be limited to Ethereum, it’s possible to talk to other networks such as:
- Main Ethereum Network
- Ropsten Test Network
- Kovan Test Network
- Rinkeby Test Network
- Goerli Test Network
How To Get Started With Metamask
If you’re ready to try Metamask, you can head over to their website to get started by downloading the appropriate extension for the browser you’re using (Firefox, Chrome).
You could download Metamask from the Chrome Store, but it would be safer to go to their website since there are a few Metamask knock offs floating around.
These knock offs look just like Metamask, except for the fact that hackers load them with viruses that take your private keys steal your money.
Step 1: Opening a Metamask wallet account
After downloading the extension, you have the option of either creating a new account or restoring a lost one with your seed phrase.
Step 2: Saving your seed phrase
After that, Metamask will ask your for you analytics information. This is used to improve the product.
At this point, you’ll want to back up your seed phrase, which you’ll use if you lose your computer or have to get into your ethereum account from another computer.
God forbid Metamask should go belly up, you can still use a different ethereum wallet and seed phrase to get into your account.
Now you can see why keeping your seed phrase safe and secure is so important.
Below are a few good ways to keep you Metamask seed phrase secure:
- Using a password manager (1Password, for example)
- Writing it in a notebook and keep it in a vault
- Storing it on a hard drive with encryption
Step 3: Get started using Metamask
Next, you’ll think of a password for your wallet. It will encrypt your private keys so no one can get into your Metamask wallet, then you’ll be taken to the Metamask wallet screen showing how much is in your account.
Click the puzzle icon and then select Pin Extension in your browser to make sure that you always have access to your Metamask account.
Step 4: Connect D App to your Metamask account
Next, you need to buy some Ether in order to pay for transaction fees. You can get this at an exchange like Coinbase and Kraken, then upload it in your wallet.
Now you connect your wallet to an ethereum DeFi application, which only takes a few clicks with Metamask.
Ways For Using Metamask:
There’s all sorts of ways to get around in the Ethereum universe.
1. Download Ethereum Gas station extension
Any transaction (ie, gasoline) that’s made through the Ethereum network, no matter how simple or small it is, transaction fees will need to by paid with Ether.
2. Speed up or cancel a transaction
If you want to prevent a transaction from stalling or timing out, you can tell Metamask to either “speed up” or “cancel” a transaction.
3. Get an ENS name to get paid more easily
A big pain in the side of the crypto UX is when you have to use a long address. The ENS (Ethereum Name Service) allows users to purchase .eth or .xyz domains for their contract address so they can send ‘eth’ transaction more easily. Relatives are then able to send money to “johnsmith.eth” rather than “cdew323456yhjmklop0987yhbvcdw345678-0ol”.
Is MetaMask Safe?
Of course, one should always ask themselves whether or not Metamask is safe before they download the wallet.
To answer that, Metamask has never been hacked… it incorporated HD setting for backups… and has a solid development community making updates to their open source code.
But it is an online wallet rather than a hardware wallet, so it can be more susceptible to risk.
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What are phishing attacks?
The one thing that Metamask wallet users need to be aware of is when hackers try to hijack your username and password through phishing attacks.
Basically, the Metamask wallet phishing attack functionality works like this…
So Jack is on his laptop with a couple of other tabs activated in his browser window.
Next he starts his Metamask wallet for a transaction.
The hacker can see that Jack is using Metamask via the open tabs.
Jack gets a popup message about his transaction failing. Jack is too worried since this happens every once in a while, so he keys in his password to redo the transaction and BOOM… the hacker just “picked” Jack’s wallet.
Metamask knows about these online wallet attacks and is constantly working to stop them, but you should also be careful what you do when you’re in your account.
So, when you’re using Metamask, just use one tab when doing transactions… and lock down you’re wallet if you aren’t using it.
When you’re out and about, Metamask also has a mobile app you can use so you can sync up your Metamask wallet to your mobile web wallet, but it’s still in Beta.
So how safe is Metamask?
Well, that depends on the users and how often and how safely they use their online wallets.
MetaMask vS MyEtherWallet?
MyEtherWallet (MEW) is one online wallet generator platform that’s also more well-known of all Ethereum wallets.
With MyEtherWallet, users create wallets to get into the Ethereum blockchain. With MEW, user can see their cryptocurrencies in any ethereum private key.
Metamask uses Infura to talk to the ethereum ledger. So they put their faith in other computers to stay up-do-date on the ethereum network.
Is Metamask better than MEW?
For the most part… I would say Yes. But since you’re able to use them together because of their flexibility, they can be a pretty astounding wallet package.
So, it’s really not a matter is MyEtherWallet vs MetaMask, because they truly do work hand-in-hand.
Is MetaMask Anonymous?
So, your personal information is not accessible to the Metamask wallet. But, you should really be careful when you’re surfing the internet and which browser you use.
If you think about it… you need a browser in order to use your wallet.
The browser collect information using cookies, so MetaMask is slightly not very anonymous.
You’re able to create a new address for each transaction since Metamask is an HD wallet. Therefore, nobody can track any one specific transaction from your wallet.
What are cryptocurreny wallets (crypto Wallet)?
It’s a common belief by most people that you store cryptocurrency coins in crypto wallets, and who can blame them since that’s a normal wallet works. But, that’s really not the case… all cryptocurrency wallets do is just store data regarding cryptocurrency coins.
You can shift your cryptocurrency wallets from point to point in your blockchain, but they have to stay. So, you can’t just pick up your coins and go home
Metamask users employ public and private keys to move their coins around in blockchain which is what’s kept in their crypto wallets.
What Are Paper Wallets?
Paper wallets are basically pieces of paper or notebooks where you write down your keys. It is safe, just be careful they don’t catch fire since your private key is kept offline.
It’s a good idea to use multiple wallets to store your cryptocurrency data. That way, if one gets hacked or fails, you’ll have a backup.
So how do you integrate Metamask hardware wallets?
What Is Hardware Wallet Integrations?
So, you’ve accumulated a fair amount of money in your Metamask wallet, and now you’re worried about security. Well, Metamask now provides your the option of hardware wallets like Trezor and Ledger.
It allows users to network with DeFi applications using the Metamask GUI all while leaving your private keys inside your hardware wallet.
What Is The Ethereum Blockchain?
Metamask users are able to store there eth, erc 721 and erc 20 tokens.
Metamask doesn’t show the balance of all your tokens because there are thousands on the ethereum. A lot of the are fairly obscure and won’t get much support from Metamask.
Although, it’s nothing to be concerned about. If you add your token address by hand to Metamask, you should be able to see your balance.
Should I Use Private Keys?
Yes. Metamask recently started providing support for multiple account. You can now choose one or more accounts that you want to be connected to a certain website. You can now determine which site can access which account.
Fortunately, you don’t have to create a new seed phrase for each new account you create.
Public Keys vS Private Keys:
Think of public keys as your physical, email address or phone. Anyone can see it. If they want to send you cryptocurrency, your public key is what they’ll use
You should keep your private keys secret. So if we’re talking about your email address, your private key is your password. The password is evidence that you’re the owner of your email address.
So, obviously your private keys are very important, so make sure you keep them safe and secure and that nobody else can get a hold of them.
What Are ERC 20 Tokens?
The coins that make the Ethereum world go around is Ether. Cryptocurrencies that are in the Ethereum blockchain are tokens.
Token created on the Ethereum blockchain are ERC-20 tokens since they go by specific cryptocurrency rules set by developers.
So now you can store keys in your Metamask wallet for either ERC-20 tokens or Ethers for a variety of web browsers.
So now let’s check out some Metamask wallet Pros and Cons.
Pros And Cons:
Code is Open-source: Metamask code is out on the interwebs and it’s free for you to download and even make version of your own if you so choose. Just joking, I wouldn’t do that because it can turn into a huge headache. But that’s just me. The great thing about open source software is that you the development community can continuously make improvements to it.
HD settings: HD stands for hierarchical deterministic and it’s what account holders use for backup. It’s done with seed phrases (think password phrases). Users do this in order to reset lost information.
In house coin purchasing: If users want to purchase cryptocurrency, they can do so with built-in functionality using to exchanges provided through Metamask. They can choose Coinbase to buy Ether, or ShapeShift for Ether or ERC 20 tokens.
Technical support: With the intention of getting as many people using the Ethereum network as possible, Metamask provides a technical support and a video tutorials page.
Easy To Use: Using Metamask is very simple… even for beginners, which is made apparent with all the positive Metamask wallet reviews. The feature are listed out step-by-step so that completing a transaction is a walk in the park.
Local storage for keys: Most wallets, like Coinbase, will offer store keys server side. This is a relatively common practice for exchanges that offer wallets. Since Metamask keys are kept on a user’s browser (client side) rather than on remote servers (server side), the user has better control of the private keys and public keys.
Followers: The Ethereum community holds Metamask in highest regard, so much so that their Twitter account has nearly 70k members.
As the saying, “not everything is perfect”. Of course, this is no different. So this Metamask wallet review wouldn’t be complete without listing a few of those imperfections.
Browser access: Metamask can’t get into your account information; however, the browser that it’s on might be able to see it. Now, the browser won’t be able to see any of your private keys, but it can get information on when and how you’re using the app. Because of this, Firefox and Chrome are anathema to the crypto community. A lot of crypto enthusiasts don’t think it’s a good idea for companies to store their search habits. This could be a major factor in future users declining Metamask Wallet.
Online Jitters: Of course, many online wallets have it’s pros and cons. One big con is security. Since any information that you store online is at a higher risk than information you have offline, and since Metamask provides very little security on its own, it would behoove you to use multiple wallets.
Is Metamask A Scam?
In our opinion, No. Metamask is not a scam, it’s thoroughly legit.
It’s clear that they are the leaders in the Ethereum wallet community, and with the advent of the Metamask mobile, it stands to reason that the enthusiasm for Metamask will continue to grow.
Now, whether or not you choose to use Metamask depends entirely on how you feel about Decentralized Finance.
If you’re looking for something easy to use, wallets like Argent or Dharma will be better options. They offer you access to a few select applications and make them extremely easy to use.
If your concern is about ease of use, crypto wallets (ie, Dharma or Argent) are good choices. You get to use a couple of really good applications that are easy to use.
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