I'm very confused about how you get your private key and how you can transfer it.

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    Private keys generally are never transferred. They're created in the wallet software you are using, and never leave your device. Can you explain your setup, what software/sites you're using, what you're trying to accomplish, what you have tried so far, what you see, ...? It's hard to answer vague issues like this. Apr 2, 2020 at 2:43

2 Answers 2


When you buy bitcoin do you get the private key mailed to you?


There are lots of ways to buy bitcoin but usually I'd expect they don't involve creating a private key at all. You should ideally already have one before buying Bitcoin.

If you buy Bitcoin on a service that keeps your Bitcoins in some kind of customer account then most likely you don't have any private keys and are not the owner of Bitcoin - just the possessor of a kind of IOU.

I'm very confused about how you get your private key ..

It varies but perhaps the most common way is that you download and install a standalone wallet program and, the first time you run it, it generates a random private key and stores it in a wallet data file. Typically you never see it.

... and how u can transfer it

You rarely need to.

Many wallets have a function to create a backup. You then put that backup somewhere safe that is separate from your computer. That backup will contain the private key. If your wallet (or whole computer) is destroyed or lost, you can re-create your wallet from the backup.

Many wallets will give you a "recovery phrase", sometimes called a "seed phrase". Often of twelve or twenty-four words. You can save that recovery phrase somewhere safe (e.g. stamped onto a sheet of corrosion-resistant metal with a high melting point stored in a safe in another building). That recovery phrase can be used to re-create your private key in a new wallet on a new computer. Don't confuse the recovery phrase with a password or pass-phrase used to open a wallet.

Many wallets let you see the private-key in some form. There is a form called WIF. Again that can be stored somewhere safe and used to recreate a new wallet with the same private key.

If you don't like your current wallet and want to start using a new type of wallet, the safest process is to create a new wallet and, on the old wallet, create a Bitcoin transaction to transfer the money into the new wallet. Some wallets allow you to "sweep" keys into them which is the same process but uses only the new wallet to create the transaction.


When you buy bitcoin do you get the private key mailed to you?

No. They generally transfer the BTC you bought to the address you specified.

how you get your private key

You don't get it.

First let's speak about your wallet, that is where you store your BTC assets.

If you are using web wallets like https://www.blockchain.com or hardware wallets like Ledger, you don't have direct access to your private keys. They store your private keys background, for security and accessibility reasons.

For security reasons, a wallet can have multiple private keys. When you received some BTC, the next time you click on "Receive" button, the wallet may show you different address. That's because the wallet generated new private key and new corresponding BTC address. Your wallet has the private key of all these addresses it generated, and your total money in the wallet is the values of all these addresses summed up.

When you send BTC, you just enter the destination, the fee, the transaction value. And the wallet itself will determine from which of your addresses it will send. And your wallet signs the transaction with the corresponding private keys.

Of course you can take a lower-level management, generate the private keys and addresses yourself, sign and broadcast your transaction yourself to send your BTC out to someone, by using Bitcoin Core or with a program you made by yourself. That's technical topic.

When you buy bitcoin somewhere, like https://www.paxful.com they work pretty much the same way. When you bought BTC, you don't directly get the private key. Instead, you can transfer the BTC bought to an address you specified. Then, the wallet of paxful will send the BTC to your address.

and how u can transfer it

You cannot transfer it, when you don't have private key itself. But you've no need to do so. If you want to move your BTC assets, you can just send your BTC to another wallet.

It might take some time to understand how BTC actually works - Fell free to ask me any question

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