What is a seed phrase and why is it important?
- Susan G. Hall
- on Aug 27, 2022
A seed phrase can be confusing and you are probably wondering what a seed phrase looks like and maybe how it is created. The seed phrase is generated by a cryptocurrency wallet and the user has no way to customize it.
The words generated come from a list of 2048 words. So how many words is a seed sentence? A seed phrase is a long string made up of a group of random words.
The words in a seed phrase are simplified so that the user can remember them, unlike a seed phrase made up of long numbers or special characters.
The recovery phrase consists of 12 to 24 words like energy, road or open. To avoid errors, these randomly generated words do not include pairs like “man” and “men” in the same seed sentence. The Bitcoin-(BIP)-39 Improvement Proposal in 2013 introduced these types of phrases and set a standard for deterministic wallets. Here is an imaginary 12-word seed phrase: Cry, planet, Loose, Typical, Humankind, Toddler, Anxiety, Difficult, Happy, Never, Alternative, Remorse.
A seed phrase controls all private keys associated with a deterministic wallet. The BIP-39 proposal makes major wallets compatible with each other, allowing users to load the recovery phrase into a new BIP-39 compatible wallet to access funds when lost or if you want to switch wallets.