You are not alone in asking these questions, and there are no bad questions - so don't feel silly asking them!
Crypto can be quite daunting, and it seems like there's something new to learn and consider on a weekly basis. It was the same when the internet and the world wide web launched - it seemed so technical and out-of-reach, and now the whole planet uses it.
Let me ask you a question - if you bought an apartment or house, you'd expect to be given the keys so you could open the door, and you'd also expect to be the sole owner of said keys - right? When it comes to crypto wallets - the analogy is the same, but most crypto users don't realize that they do not own the access keys to their assets. It's a pretty scary thought.
First of all, don't panic; if you use Savl's private wallet, you own your wallet (the house) and your private keys/seed phrase (the front door keys). This is because Savl's private wallet is non-custodial or self-custody. Custody simply means that someone else (a third party) is holding your keys - this is especially true of crypto exchanges where they hold or own your access, and if you lose your keys, you have to go to them and ask for access by passing security checks. Sounds great, right? Wrong!
Nobody should own your keys except you. What if an exchange crashes or gets hacked, and your keys are stolen? You won't be able to recover your wallet or funds ever again.
As the name implies, non-custodial wallets mean that no third party is guarding your keys, and the responsibility lies with you. This, too, can be daunting, but if you keep your keys very safe, there is nothing to worry about. You might keep them on an encrypted drive, in a safe deposit box or a secret place only you know, i.e. not under the garden gnome. It's true, you could lose them - and that is a risk, but it comes down to ownership and trust. Who do you trust more - exchanges and institutions or yourself?
When you sign-up for a private non-custodial wallet, you will remember you are given a 24-word recovery phrase which you must keep safe (as per above). This recovery phrase is also known as a seed phrase.
A seed phrase is used to generate a very large unguessable number that determines what your encrypted private keys are. These private keys, in turn, relate to a particular address in your private wallet, and your wallet contains many addresses (depending on what types of crypto you hold).
Thank you for reading this article and if you have any questions, feel free to reach out via Telegram @savl_support or join the conversation on Twitter @Savl_official.