For news, gossip, FUD, FOMO, charts, bots, and project updates, crypto Telegram is where it’s at. The beating heart of the crypto community resides in Pavel Durov’s encrypted messenger application.
Accessing Telegram is easy, but optimizing your experience to get the most out of the platform calls for a few do’s and don’ts. Here are eight tips to get you started.
Like the other CT (crypto Twitter), crypto Telegram encapsulates the best and worst elements of the industry. From the lowest scammers to the highest grade projects, it’s all here if you know where to look.
Much like the crypto markets, however, failure to master crypto Telegram comes at a high cost. Here’s how to up your opsec, enhance your learning, and extract the most value from the industry’s favorite messenger platform.
Lock Down Your Account
If you haven’t already, go to “Privacy and Security” in Telegram’s Settings menu. Your phone number should be set as visible only to “My Contacts” or better still “Nobody.” If it’s set to “Everybody” you’re increasing your chances of being SIM swapped. While you’re in the Settings menu, there’s a few more options you should run through, the most important being “Two-Step Verification.”
Unfortunately Telegram doesn’t offer 2FA, but it does allow you to set up an account password that will prevent anyone getting into your account, even if they’re able to swap your SIM. Getting a stolen Telegram account returned to its rightful owner is harder than it is with Twitter, so it pays to lock it down. Finally, set “Groups” so that only your contacts can add you to Telegram groups. Set it to “Everybody” and you’re prone to being added to spammy crypto groups by randoms.
Keep It Secret
If you need to discuss sensitive information with a Telegram contact, select “New Secret Chat.” All messages are stored solely on the sender and recipient’s device – not in the cloud. That’s why if you start a secret chat on your smartphone, you can’t view the conversation when you access Telegram Web on your desktop. For added security, secret chats don’t allow message forwarding and have a self-destruct timer, after which the conversation will be deleted. Signal is regarded as the most private encrypted messaging app, but for most confidential conversations, Telegram secret chat is fine.
What’s in a Name?
Impostors touting “ETH giveaways” and other low-level scams are more commonly found on Twitter, but Telegram is not immune. Be cautious of anyone who direct messages you on Telegram claiming to be the admin of a group you’re in, offering you discounted tokens OTC and similar deals. Similarly, don’t assume that a particular Telegram handle corresponds with the same personality on Twitter. You’re probably not going to be messaged by Satoshi Nakamoto or Nick Szabo on Telegram, so be highly skeptical of anyone purporting to be a known crypto influencer unless their username can be verified, such as by cross-referencing it with their Twitter bio.
Pin Popular Groups, Archive Noisy Ones
You can pin up to three groups to the top of your Telegram app for convenience. Just hold down the group name for a second and then push the pin icon that appears at the top of the page. Popular Telegram channels are alive with chatter, memes, and gossip – a little too alive at times. For fast-moving channels that provide more noise than signal, swipe left on them from the homescreen and they’ll be archived. You can still access them whenever you want to dive back in by clicking the “Archived Chats” button at the top of the page.
Use ‘Saved Messages’ as Your Clipboard
Telegram has a “Saved Messages” private channel where you can forward messages you want to store for future reference. It’s also handy as a general purpose clipboard for images and text when jumping between devices. If you need to access a mobile wallet address on your desktop, for instance, you can paste it into saved messages and retrieve it from Telegram Web on your laptop. Just remember to periodically clean your saved messages of sensitive data. For cryptocurrency transactions where privacy is paramount, avoid pasting addresses into Saved Messages altogether.
Pick Your Stickers Carefully
The best thing about crypto Telegram is the sticker packs of course. The bull market ones; the bear market ones; the Bogdanovs; the Wojaks and all the rest. While most of your stickers can be shared in most of the groups you use, there will be certain channels where pocket-sending a rude Pepe sticker can be the difference between keeping and losing your job. Unfortunately, there’s no ability to bar particular sticker packs from particular groups. Be careful which packs you install and deploy, therefore. For the ultra-cautious, Telegram will allow you to run multiple accounts from a single installation of the mobile app.
The Blockstream NPC sticker pack
Pick Your Groups Carefully
This final piece of advice is a subjective one, since the Telegram groups and channels you join are dependent on your interests. News.Bitcoin.com has previously suggested a few of the better groups, but you’ll have your own favorites. If you find you’re not getting much value out of the channels you’re in, archive them or leave altogether. Telegram is your feed, after all, tailored just the way you like it. Like an altcoin you’ve fallen out of love with, don’t be afraid to dump channels that no longer give you that warm glow. Life’s too short for mediocre chat and bad memes.