Is it worthy to customize a wallet seed?

and what do we profit by this

Let's start with the issue that the manufacturer does not provide such a possibility. And it is no coincidence. Secure seed is the one that nobody can guess. No matter if he checks well known schemes and templates, no matter if he uses the owner's personal data. Or any other knowledge about the owner he managed to gain. So in short, such a seed should be completely and objectively random. Unfortunately a human is never a good source of entropy. This is a simple consequence of man's nature. Our brain has a great ability to associate dependencies. Because of this ability we could develop and made a technological progress through the centuries. But because of the same reason the way we think is always involved with some schemes and dependencies. Our individual dependencies being the result of our entire life experience. Related to our personal likings, education, general surrounding and everything else we have ever contacted. All this results in some more or less obvious schemes of our thinking.

The biggest advantages of a hardware wallet is security and its almost 100% resistance to hacking, viruses and all software related threats. Even if your computer is infected and someone got an unathorized remote access to the system, your assets remain still secure. The only chance to access your assets remotely is by getting to know your seed. That's why excluding such a possibility is crucial, thus seed should always be random. And this is exactly the reason why the manufacturer limited the possibility of using custom seed.

Let's recall one of the biggest advantage of cryptocurrency. There are at least a few of them, but let's focus on the possibility of secure storing and carrying money, and so in consequence - the possibility of hiding the information about the assets we possess. What is the most crucial - this feauture does not depend on the money amount. No matter if we talk about 100$, or even unimaginalbe amount of money. Technically it doesn't make any difference.

Luckily, we live in good times. But let's try to imagine a turmoil of war. Lawlessness reigns around and the only existing law is the law of brute force. At every step you can meet armed and ruthless robbers. Located in the center of all this mess you are trying to escape and get to a safe place. With a little luck, you will possibly manage to do it. But there are very little chances that you will manage to conceal and save money or any of your valuables.

Another circumstances. There is no war, theoretically the law applies all around. Unfortunately the judical system is no longer independent. Your personal situation turns upside down and you become wrongfully accused. The justice has nothing to do with justice and you have no chance to appeal. In consequence you lose all your wealth.

Absurd? Utopia? Do you think it's impossible? Nothing could be more wrong. We thankfully live in a free world. But history teaches us that nothing is given forever. Wars and oppressions exist on this world permanently, only the place where they occurr changes.

And here we finally reach the conclusion.
The advantage of blockchain we mentioned in the beginning could be especially useful in the situations similar to those above. But there is only one problem.
Your assets are as secure as secure is your seed.

For all those unfamiliar with blockchain technology let's remind the most crucial matter - losing your hardware wallet does not mean losing your assets. Whoever finds the device (or steals it) he will not know your PIN number so he will not get the access to your funds. Inbuilt system factory reset after triply failed PIN input attempt efficiently prevents wallet owner from such a loss. After all he can anytime later and anywhere else buy a brand new device and restore all of his assets by entering his original seed. That's right - seed is the main key. Thanks to this extraordinary blockchain feature we can easily store and carry unlimited amount of money literally... in our mind! But only as long as we can faultlessly remember our seed. Now do you get where are we going?
Just try to conceal and take something valuable out of the danger zone, a thick wad of cash or maybe a gold bar. Your chances are slim. But using a cryptocurrency you can easily smuggle any amount of money just in your brain by remembering the key. Isn't it amazing? Welcome to the XXI century.
Now try to explain it to your grandma

Let's face the truth - very little people are able to remember a sequence of 24 random words. There are some remembering techniques of course, there are some schools and sophisticated methods. Maybe we could even manage to remember an entire sequence for some time. But human memory is unreliable. Honestly I would never risk the possibility of losing my savings by relying on my ability to remember an entire 24 words sequence. That is too many. So, what's left? A piece of paper?

A piece of paper is truly a perfect solution in the context of any cyber threats. But I wouldn't expect that in the circumstances mentioned above armed robbers or any other functionary could miss a piece of paper with such a specific note (24 random words) while going through our pockets. I am afraid that robbers or any other officials are aware of blockchain technology in 2020, so they are aware of what does the 24 words sequence mean. We should consider even more reliable case like simple home burglary. I wouldn't expect that burglars are not aware of blockchain in 2020. Thieves stay up to date with the technology more than we could expect. There is a very little chance they could ignore a seed written on paper. That's why a note on paper is still not the most secure solution. I don't even mention the possibility of losing or accidental destroying the paper.
So after all the most secure solution is our brain. Therefore the most crucial issue is confidence that we will never forget the seed.

In such a situation the ability of seed customization seems to be substantially helpful.
And the answer is YES – I claim that it is worthy to use the sequence created by your own. Furthermore, I'm pretty sure that an intelligent person aware of all the threats we mentioned above is able to create it in the way which guarantees its mnemonic and the same time its high secureness with no risk of guessing by someone else.
In the part III, you will find out how to make it in a secure way.


I. Is it possible to customize seed?

Most of Ledger Nano owners at some point start to wonder if there is a possibility to customize their seed. Possibly some of them go even further and try to use randomly chosen words in the recovery option. read...


III. How to make it in a secure way?

While looking for the solution we have to comply with two contradictory conditions - the sequence should be mnemonic, but the same time completely random. Impossible? Not necessarily. read...