[Terminology] What are private keys and public keys?

by GameAZ
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Private Key and Public Key are common utilities used to encrypt data. However, Private Key is more prominent than Public Key in speed and ability to share between sender and receiver of encrypted data.

Private and public keys are an important part of cryptocurrencies and bitcoin, allowing users to receive and send money without the need for a 3rd party to verify the transaction.

So how are Private Key and Public Key defined? How do they work? Let’s find out with GateGame

1. What is a private key?

The private key gives the user the ability to prove ownership, or use, of the amount spent in relation to the user’s public address information.

1.1. What kind of private key is it like?

  • The binary code is 256 characters long.
  • 64 digit hexadecimal code.
  • QR code.
  • Easy-to-remember phrases.

Each Private Key has its own characteristics (Unique) corresponding to a unique wallet. Here are a few illustrative examples on the current Blockchain market:

2. What is the public key?

Public Key is a term that connects a Private Key that allows it to be used to conduct cryptocurrency transactions. Private Key acts as a mandatory condition in transactions to unlock and authenticate users

Sharing the Public Key freely will not affect the security of user assets

2.1. What would a public key look like?


With a string of characters that is too long, it will cause inconvenience to users. To overcome this, the concept of wallet addresses was born:

3. How Private key and Public key work

The operation process of private key and public key is done as follows:

First, the sender needs to know the recipient’s public key information, next the user will use this key to encrypt the information, then the user transfers the encrypted information to the receiver, finally the recipient Use the private key to encrypt the information you just received.

3.1. Example of working process of private key and public key

If Cuong wants to send Vu 1 BTC, Cuong needs to get Vu’s public key and encrypt it with the BTC he wants to send. Next, Cuong will have to digitally sign, and send the transaction on the blockchain. About a time, Vu will receive the BTC that Cuong sent him, with his private Vu can encrypt and decrypt, and can use that BTC.

Finally, private is extremely important to users, it proves ownership, manages assets, and authorizes every transaction in its wallet. If the user reveals his private key information, there is a high possibility that all assets in the wallet will be lost, please be careful and secure the private key carefully.

4. Compare public key and private key

Public Key

Private Key

Used to identify the account, allowing to receive coins. Anyone can search it on the blockchain

Allow connecting and using your coins, used to prove the owner of the Public key

No need to keep it a secret


Cannot find Private key from Public key

The public key can be found from the private key

If the Public key is exposed, it seems that the user’s property will not be affected

If the Privatekey is exposed, users will face the risk of losing all their assets

The wallet address is a shortened version of the public key

There is no shortened version available

5. What is a passphrase? Difference between passphrase and private key

Passphrase is a 12 – 24 character string used to regenerate the wallet address and private key, restore the user’s e-wallet, the passphrase will be provided immediately after the user creates the wallet.

Users can understand, a passphrase will include many private keys, the private key is the key to the total house, the private key is the individual key of each room.

Compare Private Key and Passphrase:

Private key


Allow access to use your cryptocurrency

Secure, recover in case the user logs in on another device, or can’t access his wallet

Complicated, hard to read, hard to remember, hard to rewrite

Simple, easy to read, easy to remember, easy to rewrite

Can’t get my private key back without passphrase

Can be used to recover your private key

6. Security guide for private key and passphrase

Here are some ways to secure the wallet, which Gategame wants to send to users:

  • Write the passphrase and private key on the paper, protect the paper from fading
  • Users can stamp on metal, stone or carve them into a piece of wood, which will be more durable than paper.
  • Always store your private key and passphrase offline to avoid the risk of information being hacked.
  • When self-written or engraved, the private key and passphrase must be clearly written in the correct order and spelling.
  • Users can make several copies of the private key and passphrase, storing it in other safe places.
  • Say no to storing your private key or passphrase online or as a file on your computer and phone.
  • Never add random words to your passphrase and private key. Users can easily forget previously added words and won’t be able to access their assets.
  • You should not memorize the private key and passphrase yourself because it is too long, at some point you will forget

So Gategame has gone with the reader to all the content about Private key and Public key, it seems that these two terms are very important in Crypto. Again, you should take good care of your private key, to avoid losing, revealing, or forgetting it. Gategame looks forward to seeing you in the next articles.

If you have any questions, comments, recommendations or project ideas, please email: [email protected]

Disclaimer: This website’s content is offered as a general market overview and does not constitute financial advice. GameAZ recommends you to conduct additional research before to investing.

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