The goal of this guide is to get you setup with using bitcoin in a reasonably easy, affordable, and secure way. After you get comfortable with this setup you can easily upgrade your security and privacy without changing the software you are using.
minimum setup cost: ~$150 + computer
recommended full setup bundle cost: ~$300 + computer
curl https://keyserver.ubuntu.com/pks/lookup?op=get&search=0xA3A31BAD5A2A5B10 | gpg --import
gpg --verify signatures.txt
5DF6 A760 1DB8 B78E BDEC 18DB 5D27 DE56 4153 F2BD
gpg --import ben-kaufman.asc
gpg --verify sha256.signed.txt
sha256sum -c sha256.signed.txt specter_desktop-v1.3.1-x86_64-linux-gnu.tar.gz | grep OK
6F16 E354 F833 93D6 E52E C25F 36ED 357A B24B 915F
IMPORTANT THINGS TO REMEMBER
always verify receive addresses on the coldcard address explorer going forward
make sure to clearly label your receive addresses in Specter so you know what their source is when you go to send from them in the future
always double check destination and change addresses directly on the coldcard screen during the transaction sending process
never connect your coldcard directly to the computer, use a microsd card to transport the data
make sure you backup your wallet by storing the secret word phrase somewhere safe and offline
anyone with access to this phrase can spend your coins, never enter it into your computer, only enter it directly into your coldcard when restoring from backup
can also be useful to have an additional backup that is a second coldcard already setup with the same wallet
always test your backups, consider doing a full restore process on a new device
the coldcard is designed to be secure even if your computer is insecure but best practice is to use a dedicated computer with it that you do not use for anything else - if a malicious actor gets access to your computer they can compromise your privacy and potentially steal funds
You may want to experiment with a multisig setup using the same software stack as above as you get more comfortable. The nice thing about the above setup is you can easily move to multisig in the future. A guide for that setup can be found here.
The content above provides education as to general privacy and security practices when using bitcoin. Should you choose to apply the practices described in linked content with bitcoin you own now or may purchase in the future, you do so at your own risk and I shall in no event be liable for any financial loss suffered. Nothing shall be construed as providing consulting, financial advice or general advice as to securing bitcoin.