What is Staking Crypto?
Crypto staking is the process of holding and locking up a certain amount of cryptocurrency in a wallet or on a specific staking platform to support the operation of a blockchain network and earn a reward for doing so. The process is called “staking” because it is similar to the concept of earning interest on a savings account by keeping money in the bank for a certain period.
Staking is typically used in proof-of-stake (PoS) blockchain networks, where the network’s validators are chosen based on how many coins they hold and are willing to “stake” as collateral. The more cryptocurrency a user stakes, the higher the chances of becoming a validator and the more rewards the user can earn. The rewards gained from staking are usually in the form of the native cryptocurrency of the blockchain network.
The process of staking is typically done through a staking wallet or a staking pool, where users can deposit their coins, and the pool will take care of the staking process. Staking pools are groups of users who pool their resources together in order to increase their chances of becoming validators and earning rewards.
Staking is becoming more and more popular as a way to earn passive income and support the operation of blockchain networks. It is an alternative to the traditional method of mining which consumes a lot of energy and requires specialized hardware.
What Security Measures Should You Take When Staking?
When staking cryptocurrency, it’s essential to take specific security measures to protect your assets and ensure that you can earn rewards for your staked coins. Some of the critical security measures to consider include:
- Secure your private keys: Your private keys are the keys to your cryptocurrency holdings and you must keep them safe. This can be done by using a hardware wallet, a physical device that stores your private keys offline, making them much less vulnerable to hacking.
- Use a trusted staking platform: When choosing a staking platform, make sure that you choose one that has a good reputation, has been around for a while, and has a proven track record of providing secure staking services.
- Keep your software up to date: Always make sure that the software you are using is up to date with the latest security patches. This includes your staking software, operating system, and any other software you use to access or manage your staked coins.
- Enable two-factor authentication (2FA): Two-factor authentication adds an extra layer of security to your staking platform by requiring a second form of authentication, such as a code sent to your mobile phone, in addition to your password.
- Use a cold storage: Cold storage is a method of storing your assets offline. This can be done by using a hardware wallet that stores your assets offline, or by transferring your assets to an offline wallet.
- Diversify your staked assets: Diversifying your staked investments can help to spread the risk of loss in a security breach.
- Regularly monitor your staking activity: Regularly monitor your staking activity to ensure that your coins are being staked as expected and that you are receiving the rewards you are entitled to.
Staking Crypto Protocols
There are several popular staking crypto protocols that are currently in use on various blockchain networks. Some of the most well-known and widely used include:
- Proof of Stake (PoS): PoS is one of the most popular staking protocols and is used by many blockchain networks, including Ethereum 2.0, Cosmos, and Tezos. In PoS, validators are chosen based on the amount of cryptocurrency they hold and are willing to “stake” as collateral.
- Delegated Proof of Stake (DPoS): DPoS is a variation of PoS in which token holders can vote for delegates who will make decisions on their behalf and validate transactions on the network. EOS and Lisk are some of the blockchain networks that use DPoS.
- Leased Proof of Stake (LPoS): LPoS is a hybrid staking protocol that combines the benefits of PoS and DPoS. In LPoS, users can delegate their coins to master nodes, who will validate transactions on the network in exchange for a portion of the rewards. Waves and NavCoin are some examples of blockchain networks that use LPoS.
- Simple Ledger Protocol (SLP): SLP is a staking protocol used by the Bitcoin Cash (BCH) network. It allows users to create and manage their own tokens on the BCH blockchain and earn rewards for staking them.
- Proof of Authority (PoA): PoA is a staking protocol that is used by private or consortium blockchains, where a group of trusted validators are chosen to validate transactions on the network. This type of protocol is used when the network is permissioned, meaning that only a specific group of entities can join.
The Basics Before Staking Crypto
When researching the cryptocurrency, you may want to invest in. You will need a few key things to getting’s started:
- A cryptocurrency: The first step is acquiring some cryptocurrency supported by a staking program. This can be done by purchasing it through a cryptocurrency exchange, receiving it as a payment, or earning it through mining.
- A wallet: To stake your cryptocurrency, you will need a wallet that supports staking. This can be a software wallet or a hardware wallet that is designed specifically for staking.
- Internet connection: You’ll need a stable and reliable internet connection to connect your wallet to the blockchain network and receive updates about the network.
- Minimum staking amount: Most staking programs have a minimum amount required to start staking. You’ll need to make sure that you have enough of the specific cryptocurrency you want to stake to meet the minimum requirement. Also, consider the transaction fees of the network. Fees vary from network to network.
- Patience: Staking can take some time before you start seeing rewards, so you’ll need to be patient and wait for the rewards to come in. Different programs require you to lock your crypto for a set period before you receive anything.
- Knowledge: It’s important to understand the different staking protocols, and how they work, in order to make an informed decision when choosing which cryptocurrency to stake and which staking platform to use. Consider the utility of the token and the roadmap of where they plan to use it and grow.
Staking Projects and My Watchlist
Many crypto-staking projects are available, but a few have been around longer than others. Three popular projects are Ethereum 2.0, Cosmos, and Tezos. The value and return will vary, but all have a very high TLV and a consistent reputation. My blog looks at many different projects, from the popular to the unknown and the up-and-comers. If you are interested in seeing what I am watching, check out my Crypto Staking Watchlist.
In summary, crypto staking is the process of holding and locking up a certain amount of cryptocurrency in order to support the operation of a blockchain network and earn rewards for doing so. It is typically used in proof-of-stake networks and can be done through a staking wallet or a staking pool.