Crypto 101


The new world of money is here, it’s on the move, and it’s not waiting on anybody to catch up.

This page is designed to take you through the step-by-step process of understanding what cryptocurrency is, how to set up an account on an exchange, and how to buy your first crypto. It will constantly be getting updated and expanded based on user feedback. So make sure to check back from time to time to see if there’s anything new! 


Phase 1

The Basics

To be an educated consumer, you can’t skip the fundamentals!

What is Blockchain?

A primer on what blockchain technology can do, how it functions, and why it matters. 

What is Bitcoin? 

This brief video gives a succinct explanation of the paradigm shifting technology that is Bitcoin.

What is Ethereum?

The largest of the smart contract platforms, Ethereum is a platform you need to understand.

“What’s a Private Key?”

Private keys decrypt, and allow access to, any information stored in a public key. The easy way to think of this in the world of cryptocurrency is to imagine your public key as your “address” and you private key as your “password”.  To really gain an understanding of the importance of private keys, watch this video by Andreas Antonopolous: Not Your Keys, Not Your Bitcoin.

“What’s a Wallet?”

In the same way that the vast majority of humans today need a physical wallet to carry around their physical cash, cryptocurrency users need digital wallets. There are many different kinds of wallets to choose from, but the ones we recommend can all be found on our resources page. We recommend hardware wallets for long-term storage, as it is by far the most secure option. 

“What’s an Exchange?”

Exchanges are websites that allow you to purchase Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. Each exchange has a different grouping of coins and tokens that they allow users to trade on their platform. For the majority of Koin Keys readers, the easiest, most secure option to use for getting started is Coinbase. Other exchanges we use include Binance, ABRA, and Coinmama.

“How do I buy Some Cryptocurrency?”

We’re glad you asked.

It’s time to move to Phase 2 of our process. 

Phase 2

Setting Up Accounts

This is where things get real. We’re gonna get your account set up on an exchange. All you have to do is pick which exchange you would like to get set up with, and follow the instructions step by step.


The easiest way to get into the world of cryptocurrency, particularly if you are from the U.S.

Step 1

Go to Click the link in the top, righthand corner that reads “Get Started”. 

Step 2

Enter all of the personal information requested on the following page. This is where you will be setting up your account. When you are done, click “Create Account.”

Step 3

Follow the prompts given directly by Coinbase. You will be asked to verify your email. Click “Verify” in the email sent to you.  

Step 4

Time to verify your identity. Coinbase complies with U.S. government KYC / AML laws. This means they have to know you are who you say you are to the best of their ability. You will be asked to upload an ID and picture of yourself. Once complete, Coinbase will review your submission and send you an email like the one below to let you know you have been verified.   

Step 5

Depending on what bank you use, and what method of payment you choose, you may be asked to verify your back account by inputing the value of deposits made to your bank account by Coinbase. These deposits will usually be between .01 and .20 cents and the process for verifying them is very easy.

To access your linked accounts, and to connect new ones, go to your settings tab and click “Linked Accounts.”

Step 6

Buy crypto!

That’s right. Once you’ve successfully attached a bank account, debit card, or credit card, you’re ready to make your first purchase.

Once you buy, your crypto will be accessible to you under the “Accounts” tab. 



 Binance is focused on trading between different coins and tokens with very low barriers to entry. 

Step 1

Go to Click the “Register” button in the top right or the “Create Account” button in the center of the page. 

Step 2

Fill out the information required on the registration page. When finished click “Register.” 

Step 3

You will need to confirm your email by clicking the link in the email they send you. The email should look similar (formats change over time) to the one pictured below.

Step 4

Set up you 2 Factor Authentication. You will likely get a notification on screen as pictured below, and we highly recommend setting up 2FA to further secure your account and protect your information. 

Step 5

Verifying your identity on Binance is optional, unlike Coinbase. You get increased buy limits and withdrawal rates for verifying your identity. To do so, click the “unverified” button beside your email on your dashboard. Follow the prompts to complete. 

Step 6

Buy crypto!

That’s right. Once you’ve successfully attached a bank account, debit card, credit card, or deposited some crypto, you’re ready to make your first purchase.

Simply click the “Exchange” button in the top left, select the “Basic option, and you’re off to the races! 


Phase 3

Storing Your Crypto Safely

We’re just getting started on deciding how to best store and secure the assets that we personally hold. Since that is the case, we want to hold off on our recomendation until we feel certain about what we’re doing. We’ll update this section soon! 

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Subscribe to our once-monthly newsletter to get all of our latest updates as well as automatic enrollment in our FREE “Intro to Crypto” course. The course is comprised of three emails sent over three days and gives you everything you need to get started in the new world of money. 

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