Where Do You Store Your NFTs?

Stephen G.
Stephen G.
Last Updated on November 19, 2021

NFTs, more formally known as non-fungible tokens, are a type of digital asset that have exploded in hype and popularity overnight. Because each NFT is unique and valuable in its own right, it’s extremely important to protect and store them in a safe place. 

After you buy an NFT, it has to go somewhere. There are several places you can keep your NFTs tucked away safely, so having a better understanding of storage is very helpful. 

How Does NFT Storage Work?

The whole concept of NFTs, along with other forms of digital assets, collectibles, and cryptocurrencies is quite confusing. We understand where all of the questions are coming from. The idea of storing a digital asset is a bit mind-blowing.

Although NFTs are recorded on a blockchain like those used for cryptocurrencies, they’re not exactly stored here. 

When you purchase an NFT, a digital signature called a certificate is created. This digital signature is unique to this NFT, and it’s called a token. The token contains an online web address that takes you to the item you purchased, like digital artwork. 

Man in suit using mobile phone with images floating on his side

In short, the NFT that you bought, such as the artwork example above, remains on the web. However, the non-fungible token (or the digital signature) gets stored on the blockchain.

And that’s where crypto wallets come into play. Crypto wallets come in the form of NFT platforms, which allow you to browse, buy, sell, and store NFT using the blockchain. 

NFT Storage Options

There are a few different NFT wallet options on the market today that you can choose to use. In addition to software and online systems, there are also offline options that many consider the most secure choice. 

Let’s take a closer look at the most common NFT storage options to give you a better grasp of what we’re talking about. 

Software Wallets

Anyone who knows anything about cryptocurrency, such as bitcoin, is familiar with software wallets or crypto wallets. 

A software wallet allows you to store your NFT collection online, protecting them with various types of security, including passwords. Crypto wallets are web-based. When compared with our other storage options, they have the least amount of security. 

But software wallets are easy to use and super convenient. They let you store, organize, and display your tokens. And, you can connect to other crypto exchanges on the NFT marketplace. 

Some popular NFT software wallets include:

  • MetaMask
  • OpenSea
  • Rarible
  • AlphaWallet
  • Trust Wallet
  • Pillar

That’s just to name a few; there are many software wallets available online today. Those who use these wallets are likely casual users with low-value assets. 

InterPlanetary File Systems

InterPlanetary File Systems, also known as IPFSs, are another NFT storage option that more serious collectors prefer due to their increased security and safety over software wallets. 

IPFS programs generate authentication logs for your NFT purchases, encrypt the content identifiers, and store them directly on your computer instead of the online program. Whenever you want to access your NFT, these programs connect the dots between your content identifiers and the encrypted hashes on its end to make sure it’s a match. 

IPFSs allow you to store your unique content identifiers on your computer rather than online, which makes it more difficult for hackers to steal your digital assets. 

Cold Storage Hardware Wallet

This last storage option is for the hardcore NFT collectors out there. Cold storage hardware wallets are the most secure option, as they remove your NFTs from the online world altogether. 

Unlike web-based platforms, cold storage hardware wallets are physical devices that store your NFTs. They do not use any blockchains, apps, or websites, so only you can ever access your non-fungible tokens; hacks are practically impossible.

More expensive devices also allow you to restore stolen content, trade online, and even have insurance policies. Some of the most popular options for hardware are KeepKey, Trezor, and Ledger.