Getting Cryptocurrency

Looking to buy tokens with dollars?

Begin with a base cryptocurrency, such as Bitcoin or Ethereum.

Here’s MyCrypto’s guide for buying ETH (Ethereum coins) with US dollars. Once fiat currency like USD is traded for cryptocurrency like ETH or Bitcoin’s BTC, you can use exchanges to trade into other cryptocurrencies, such as Cosmos ATOMs, Tezos XTZs, and Livepeer’s LPT.

Looking to trade tokens?

There are primarily two different kinds of exchanges–centralized and decentralized.

  • Fast trading – simple interface; high liquidity
  • Limited control – requires private info; funds can be lost by third party
  • Slow trading – challenging interface; low liquidity
  • Full control – no private info required; funds secured by smart contract

Centralized exchanges are currently most popular because they are easy to use and provide access to lots of liquidity. Even if your account says you own a certain amount of cryptocurrency, until you have that amount in a wallet you control, you are depending on a third party to given you access to your funds. Centralized exchanges have historically lost customer funds due to security breaches, negligence, and internal corruption.

Decentralized exchanges are less popular, but users trust them to be more secure. Traders often rely on smart contract security to protect their funds, rather than third party custody. Smart contracts are then controlled by you via:

  1. Hardware wallet: Ledger (recommended)
  2. Software wallet: Metamask or Trust Wallet

Trading on decentralized exchanges is usually much lower in volume, and the interfaces can be difficult to use.