Articles on: Backup & Recovery

Backing up your Recovery Passphrase

How to Back up my Recovery Passphrase?

As you're probably aware by now, it's extremely important to securely back up your 25-word recovery passphrase for each account you create! The 25-word passphrase is THE only way to regain access to your account if you logout from the App or lose access to your wallet.

Let's say that you find yourself in one of the following situations:

◾️ You drop your phone in the toilet and it's destroyed
◾️ Your phone is stolen or lost
◾️ Your Pera Algo Wallet app gets deleted from your phone
◾️ You forget the PIN to access your Pera Algo Wallet
◾️ You've memorized the recovery passphrase but one day you wake up and can't remember it!

While some of these situations may seem like they could never happen to you, we assure you that they're happening a lot. The good news is that if you back up your 25-word recovery passphrase, you'll always have access to those respective accounts.

Before we explain you how to back-up your recovery passphrase, here are some basic concepts.

What is a Recovery Passphrase?

Simply put, a recovery passphrase is a string of 25 words that gives you access to an Algorand account. Basically, this is the key that unlocks your account and all the transactional power that comes with it. If someone get access to your recovery passphrase he will have total control over your account and the assets it contains.

When you create an Algorand Account with Pera wallet, you'll be prompted to create a backup of your 25-word recovery passphrase. These 25 words are what you'll use when you recover an account.

What happens if I lost my recovery passphrase or if I do not write it down?

Unfortunately if you don't write down your recovery passphrase or if you lost it, you'll lose access to your wallet account for ever. The Pera Algo Wallet is a non-custodial wallet, meaning that you (and only you) are in complete control over the management of your account and the assets in it. The Pera team don't store the passphrase.

Only the person who has the 25-word passphrase can access the wallet account. However, with this power comes responsibility. If you lose your 25-word recovery passphrase that unlocks the account, no one can recover it for you.

How to see my recovery passphrase once I've already created an account in the wallet?

If you still have access to your wallet account, you can view the recovery passphrase associated to each of the wallet accounts. The Wallet will ask you to enter your pin-code or face ID. We explain below how to access your recovery passphrase once you are logged in.

Tap the account name

From here, tap Share tree dots on the top right corner (Green highlight on the picture below)

From here, you can tap the "View Passphrase" link. The app will ask for the Pin-code or Biometric Identification to securely show you the passphrase. ⚠️Make sure to only access your passphrase when you are alone and in a secure environment where no other people have access to your screen.

From here, make sure to write down your passphrase carefully with each number associated to the right word. We do not recommend you to take screenshots. The best practice to follow is to write down the passphrase on paper and always store the passphrase offline.

How should I back up my passphrase?

When backing up your passphrase, you have many options to choose from. The main consideration when choosing how to securely back up your passphrase is how likely it is that someone could gain access to it.

While each method of storing your passphrase has downsides, generally the most secure storage mechanisms involve storage that's completely disconnected from any device that could access the internet. The least secure storage are methods that involve saving your passphrase on devices or cloud accounts that could be easily hacked. Here's a glimpse at this spectrum below:

What are the best practice to follow when backing up a Passphrase?

🟢 Excellent Passphrase storage practice

◾️ Writing your passphrase down on a piece of paper and storing it in a secure location. Offline
◾️ Putting your passphrase on a weatherproof Cryptosteel and storing in a secure location

🟠 Medium Passphrase storage practice:

◾️Using a password manager such Lastpass, 1Password, etc. to save your passphrase

🔴 Bad Passphrase storage practice:

◾️ Saving a screenshot of your passphrase on your phone
◾️ Emailing yourself your passphrase
◾️ Texting your passphrase to someone
◾️ Uploading your passphrase to a cloud based service such as iCloud, Google Photos, Dropbox, etc.

Where can I find out more about backup phrase storage?

◾️ If you want to know more about the passphrase storage best practices, a simple google search using terms such as "recovery passphrase," "crypto storage," and "seed phrase storage" will yield you thousands of articles written on the subject.

Additional Info:

Your passphrase is not case sensitive - you don't need to worry about capital or lower-case letters
This is just an overview on safely storing you recovery passphrase. Everyone's situation will be different. It's important to do your own research to determine what's best for you.
Never share your passphrase publicly.
Never share your passphrase with Algorand employees. We will never ask to see your passphrase.
Your Algorand Wallet can contain multiple accounts. You must store you a recovery passphrase for each account created this way.

Updated on: 03/02/2023

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