Does a hardware wallet protect me from scams?

A hardware wallet does two main things:

  1. It generates and stores your seed phrase and private key offline on a separate device from your computer/mobile/tablet.

  2. It allows you to connect it to a software wallet such as MetaMask. Doing so results in two confirmations required to transact or sign: one for the software wallet and one for the hardware wallet.

Referring to the types of scams MintDefense protects you from, this is what a hardware wallet does for you for each of them:

  1. Wallet Transactions and Signatures A hardware wallet will only slow you down by asking you for a second confirmation, but it won't protect you. Once you transact or sign on a scam site and authorize it in your hardware wallet, you've transferred/given permission to a scammer.

  2. Seed Phrase and Private Keys Sharing A hardware wallet won't protect you because you share your seed phrase or private keys with the scammer, bypassing the hardware wallet's protection.

  3. Unauthorized access to your device This is the first prime reason to use a hardware wallet for your valuable crypto and NFTs.

    Even if someone takes control of your computer/mobile/tablet hot wallet linked to your hardware wallet, they won't be able to sign any transactions as signing is done with your hardware wallet.

  4. Malicious files This is the second prime reason to use a hardware wallet. Even if a malicious file is running on your computer/mobile/tablet, it won't be able to use your hot wallet linked to your hardware wallet because all transactions must be signed with the hardware wallet. It also won't be able to access your private key because it isn't stored on your computer/mobile/tablet.

  5. Rug pulls / poor project management A hardware wallet only stores the private key that allows you to access your crypto and NFTs. It can't protect you from rug pulls or poor project management.

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