Passphrase Support in Tangem Wallet

Tangem Wallet now allows you to import a wallet created with a seed phrase and passphrase. This opens up many opportunities for self-custody fans who are also passphrase users to enjoy the numerous benefits Tangem Wallet offers — especially its ease of use, feature-rich mobile app, and reliability. In this short guide, we explain what a passphrase means, how to import to tangem with one, and the benefits and drawbacks of passphrases.

What is a passphrase?

A passphrase is an extra word added to an existing seed phrase to create a new wallet. It differs from the 12—24 word seed phrase and is supported by many wallets using the BIP39 standard. Most experts would tell you that having a passphrase provides an additional layer of security. Still, there are major drawbacks to this feature.

Think of it as a string of ASCII characters — uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers, and special characters — that you can add to your seed phrase. Your seed phrase alone is technically a key to a valid wallet with an empty ("") passphrase. However, adding a passphrase creates a new and distinct wallet on top of your existing seed.

As a result, you can have one single recovery phrase with multiple passphrases to create multiple crypto wallets. Each passphrase leads to a unique wallet.

Note: Tangem Wallet does not yet support creating a wallet with a passphrase. This feature is only available for users who want to import a wallet created with a 12, 15, 18, 21, or 24-word seed phrase + passphrase.

How to import a wallet with a passphrase

Here's a step-by-step guide to moving into Tangem:

  1. Download and open the latest version of the Tangem app.
  2. Select Scan card.
  3. Tap the first card on your phone to scan it. 
  4. Tap Other options.
  5. Select Import wallet
  6. To import your wallet with a passphrase, enter your seed in the field for seed phrases and the passphrase below it. Then tap Import.

Note: There is no "incorrect" passphrase. Each unique passphrase you enter creates an entirely new wallet. You must be cautious when restoring your seed with a passphrase.

Where should I store my passphrase?

Your passphrase must be stored separately from your seed phrase. If you keep both in the same place, you're eliminating the purpose of having a passphrase. You can store your passphrase digitally, such as in an encrypted file or using a secure password manager, as long as your seed is stored physically.

Please note that adding a passphrase to your security measures can also increase the amount of responsibility and potential for errors. With a passphrase, you will be managing another critical piece of information. Losing or forgetting your passphrase could result in being unable to access your funds.

Passphrases are case-sensitive, meaning that capital and lowercase letters are recognized differently, and even a space character is considered a distinct character.

Passphrase checklist

  • A passphrase is like an extra phrase added to your seed phrase.
  • Each unique combination of 'seed phrase + passphrase' creates a unique wallet.
  • You should only use a passphrase if you totally understand how it works.
  • You must remember every detail in your passphrase. You will lose access to the associated funds if you make even the slightest error.
  • A passphrase can be any character or set of characters, a word, or a sentence up to 100 bytes long (~100 ASCII characters).
  • Passphrases are case-sensitive. Lowercase and uppercase characters are different.
  • A space (blank) is a valid character.
  • The recovery seed and passphrase are connected and must be used together to access a passphrase-protected wallet where your funds are stored. Without both, you cannot get access to your funds.


If you enter an incorrect passphrase, your wallet will not produce an error message but will create a new and empty wallet. We don't recommend using a passphrase because one little error on your part can lead to a disaster. Excessive "security" can be just as risky as insufficient security.


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