How to shield, send, receive, and unshield cryptocurrency

How to use the Incognito Wallet

When your coins are held in another wallet and used on other blockchains, they’re vulnerable. The transactions you make point right back to you.

Incognito, on the other hand, lets you use shielding to make your coins private, and is equipped with several features to allow you to maximize just what you can do with that privacy. The Incognito wallet allows anyone to transact cryptocurrency anonymously.

In this post, I’ll walk you through how to send, receive, and shield crypto in the Incognito Wallet.

Before we begin, let’s define a few key terms/ideas:

Bridged Cryptocurrencies

To allow for a coin like ETH to be used in a new wallet, there must be some form of interoperability between the original coin’s blockchain and the blockchain of the new wallet. To do this, Incognito builds “bridges” between the Incognito Chain and the blockchains of other coins.

All coins which you use in the Incognito Wallet have a bridge to their original blockchain, allowing them to “travel”, or be sent, back and forth between the chains. This means that all cryptocurrencies created on other blockchains that are usable in the Incognito Wallet are considered “bridged cryptocurrencies”, or “bridged coins”.

Native Coins

Native coins are cryptocurrencies that are created and issued on the same blockchain you’re using, as opposed to bridged cryptocurrencies, which are sent over. Incognito’s main native coin is called Privacy (PRV), but users can also create their own coins in the Incognito Wallet. Privacy coins that are created when you shield your crypto, like pBTC, are also native coins.

Privacy Coins

Privacy coins are, surprise surprise, coins that are transacted privately. They don’t trace back to you and protect you and your personal/financial data. All native coins are privacy coins, and so are copies of bridged coins (when they’re in your Incognito Wallet).

When you send a coin, such as BTC, from its original location to the Incognito Chain (by using the wallet), a new privacy coin is minted with a 1:1 value as the original. In this case, pBTC would be created. That pBTC can now be transacted anonymously. When you withdraw it (send it out of your Incognito Wallet to an external address), the minted coins are burned and the original coins are released to your destination address and will be stored as BTC, ETH, etc, no longer private.

In Network

Anything that remains on the Incognito Chain for the entirety of its transaction is considered in network. What that looks like is a transaction sent from one Incognito Wallet address to another, whether the destination address belongs to you or someone else.

Out Network

Any transaction that is sent to an address by any other wallet aside from Incognito is considered “out of network”. This is for sending/receiving bridged cryptocurrencies, like bitcoin or ether, to/from a different wallet or exchange. Because these transactions leave or begin away from the Incognito Chain, you cannot send any coin that is native to the Incognito blockchain, such as PRV or user-created privacy coins, because there is no bridge for them. If you attempt to, you will receive an “invalid address” message.

Note: For unshielding (sending to a non-incognito address), make sure your recipient address is a real wallet address, not a smart contract address. If you send your coins to a smart contract instead of a wallet, they will be lost.


Shielding is how you can add privacy to your existing tokens. When a cryptocurrency is not on the Incognito Chain, it is unshielded and public. If you want privacy when you use your crypto, you can send it to the Incognito Chain. Once you do, it is shielded and a privacy coin is minted. When it is transacted in network, it is shielded and private (pBTC, pETH, etc). When you send it back out of the network to another wallet, it is no longer private.

Wallet Addresses

When you set up your Incognito Wallet, you are automatically given multiple accounts, each with a wallet address. Account 0, pDEX (providing liquidity), pDEX withdraw (for withdrawing from the pDEX, oddly enough), and Stake (for Node Pool withdrawals). You can add accounts, keeping multiple addresses in your wallet to use however you choose.

Addresses have clues in them that can tell you what kind of address they are. In network addresses all start with the number 12. Addresses for receiving from out of the network depend on the coin you are receiving. For example, since Ethereum addresses begin with “0x”, the address you use for receiving ether will start with “0x”.

Alright. Wow. That was a lot of reading. Now that you’re familiar with those terms, let’s get started:

First things first, ensure you’ve downloaded the Incognito app, and opened it. If you don’t have it, you can download it below.


Click to expand the steps. For this tutorial, we’ll use Bitcoin as an example, but you can follow these instructions with any supported currency.

All steps below except “Shield” require you to have shielded assets in your Incognito wallet. If you don’t, start with the “Shield” instruction.

How to shield, send, receive, and unshield:


“Shielding” is anonymizing your crypto. All it takes is to deposit your crypto into your Incognito address from a non-Incognito address. But since it comes from an external source, it’s an “out-network” transaction, and therefore uses a different process than “Receive”.

Click to see how to anonymize your crypto

From the home screen, tap “Wallet”. The buttons/steps we follow will be indicated in magenta. :purple_circle:

Next, tap the blue button “Shield a coin”

Now tap the “Copy” button and paste this address into the address field on your wallet where you are sending BTC from.

Input the address into your send transaction from an external wallet

Wherever you’re holding your crypto, initiate a send transaction and use this address as the receiving address.

Once the transaction processes, wait a few minutes for the asset to show up in your account. Congratulations! Your crypto can now be traded and transacted anonymously!

Send and Unshield

“Send” refers to anonymously sending crypto within the Incognito network, from your Incognito wallet to another Incognito wallet.
“Unshielding” is de-anonymizing your crypto. Since any crypto in the Incognito network is anonymous by default, to “unshield” is just to send your crypto to a non-Incognito address.

As of September 16, 2020, Unshield was merged with this feature. When you input your address, the app will verify it and start to send or unshield your token.
See also: Need your input: app improvement options

Click to see how to anonymously send crypto

Tap “Assets”

From the home screen, tap “Wallet”.

Choose the asset you want to send.

Whether it’s BTC, PRV, or otherwise, tap the asset you want to send.

Tap the 3 dots in the top right corner “…” and then tap “Send”

Enter the transaction details

Enter the amount you want to send, or click the “infinity” symbol to send the maximum amount.

Add a receiving address. This can be either an Incognito address or an External BTC address.

You can also add a memo for the transaction, which will be visible on the network explorer.

Agree to the terms and tap the button to send the funds. That is it, your transactions will now process and send to your public on-chain wallet.

Tap “Send anonymously” / “Unshield my crypto”

Once you’ve filled out the information, click send. Confirm, and then wait for the transaction to process.


If you are using crypto outside of the Incognito Wallet, it is not private. Take back your right to privacy by transferring your coins to the Incognito Wallet, and enjoy the safety that anonymity brings.

This tutorial deals only with the functions of the wallet. To trade, buy, sell, and withdraw are functions handled in the pDEX, and explanations for them can be found in the pDEX tutorial.


[SOLVED] BTC has not arrived
Out of network transfers??
How to lower ETH gas fees by over 1,000x
Sending and receiving
BEFORE YOU POST: User help quick guide
Address Book - Send to people, not addresses.
How to use Incognito wallet
"unshield "button is disappearing
How to trade anonymously with pUniswap
(Answered) Incognito Loan Questions
How to send BTC etc etc. To a prv wallet
How to send BTC etc etc. To a prv wallet
The Incognito mode for Horizon Protocol is now live!
How to send Prv to another incognito address?
How to get a verified (green) tick for privacy coins
[Shipped] Incognito web-based applications
The Incognito mode for Telos is now live!
The FantOHM DAO Governance Token - $FHM - is now ready!
Harvest Finance (FARM) is now ready on Incognito
[SOLVED] BTC has not arrived
Start here 1 - What is Incognito?
Start here 3 - Learn to use Incognito mobile app
Privacy Quest Hub - Clues, solved chests, and hints for hard chests!
Start here 4 - The PRV Economy
Incognito Mode for FantomOpera's Star - LiquidDriver - $LQDR
The Incognito mode for Garlicoin is now live!
Atlantis Loan Token ($ATL) - Privacy Mode Ready!
The privacy mode for Kardiachain is activated!
How Instant Finality improves all Incognito features
Appendix 2 - :gift: PRV Faucet - Get 0.00001 PRV free
Privacy Mode for Abracadabra Money's Asset - $MIM and $SPELL
Yearn Finance, Top Yielding Token - $pYFI - is READY!
Incognito Mode for $BOO from SpookySwap is ready!
Automated Farming Done Right - AutoFarm ($AUTO) is ready to shield!
Privacy Upgrade for $ANN - Annex Finance
Cypherpunk Guild funds Incognito to build privacy for NEAR ecosystem!

Thanks! @aaron


As for receiving cryptocurrency from an external wallet.
It was stated that the address is valid for 60 minutes
( Note: This is a one-time address valid for only 60 minutes ).
What if it takes more than this time to transfer the cryptocurrency to that address. What happens to the transferred amount?

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I found that the time to receive bitcoin is two hours

@Peter Is it possible to increase time in the future?


Hi @aaron , could you please update this tutorial such as home screen wallet etc and i suggest to pin it at tab menu next to categories , latest, top .

Honestly at main menu " Product, Node, PRV, Progress " . I just sighted this after a couple weeks i was active in the forum.

Most new user who come into incognito forum what they see are " categories, latest and top menu".

The default screen of forum ( categories ), it make confuse for the first user who come . As too many thing there, with various issue and its messy.

Such as this source Incognito Library - All the info you need, in one place. . Supposed to be pinned and easy to catch by new user for the first time they come in the forum.

Even though i was a couple weeks here. I am still required time to catch the important source about PRV.


if the time receiving coin is reduced a bit, it will be great


Sure @fodesin435, turning a coin into a privacy token is not simple, but we are still working to improve it in the future.


Hi @aaron, got 2 questions :slight_smile:

  • When shielding a crypto currency by sending from an exchange to the Incognito address, and you then send it on a different external address (unshielding), is it then possible to trace it back to the exchange?
  • Do/will you provide support for Injective Protocol and RAMP?

Thanks, great project! :smiley:

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Hi @M123,
This topic would be helpful for your first question: Is Incognito a mixer?
The Incogntio dex (pDEX) will help you to trade without tracking. Have you researched for it?


Thanks @Peter, that’s very helpful!
So as for mixing, it seems there are better options like Tornado Cash.

And it sounds like just using Incognito would be the best idea, but:

  • Are all coins on Uniswap also tradeable in Incognito? (With pUniswap I’m guessing). For example, I can’t seem to find INJ or RAMP in the app.
  • Under Trade it shows “pDEX”, how do I select “pUniswap”?
  • What if my phone is stolen? Can the app be 100% secured?
  • What happens if Apple decide to remove Incognito from the App Store?

Thanks again.

1 Like


Hi @Jamie, did you forget to include your answer? :slight_smile:
(Or maybe you’re suggesting that I read the documentation :wink: )

Hello and welcome !

You can check this reply from Aaron about it and have a look at the link he provided :grin:.

The security you provide to your apps it’s pretty much up to you as in how you set it up, such as Face ID recognition, pass-codes and all that stuff I guess but, in any case always back up your keys!

There’s some web wallets that are still being build by community members and you can look for them in here :grin:.

But as Jamie suggested I recommend you to look and navigate through the forum for more information. Anyways I hope it helps a little the links I provided to you.


Thanks a lot for the answers @Estem :slight_smile:

1 Like

To withdraw BTC, Is there any way for the user to set the BTC fee manually? The APP show a crazy high fee of about $58! Then I checked the suggested fee on another website, and it is only about $1. Why is the APP suggesting 50x higher fees?! I think there needs to be an override for the user to enter their desired fee to pay.

Unfortunately at this time, no. Users cannot manually set their shield / unshield fee.

The “high” fee estimation you’re receiving is most likely due to 1). Current market conditions causing network congestion, and 2). Incognito uses legacy BTC addresses which take up more block space when writing transactions. Which of course means you will need to pay a higher fee to have your txn processed.

One way this could be reduced is for Incognito to transition to SegWit addresses. SegWit addresses reduce the size needed to store transactions in a block. This is done by removing certain signatures with counting serialized witness data as one unit and core block data as four units.


It is not just BTC.
Any ERC-20 token also have crazy high fees.
The app is quoting $75+ , while on ETH gas station and other wallets, the estimated fee is just $10. There needs to be a way to set custom fees. The ETH fee is already high, and the app multiply that by 7x or 8x, makes it impractical to use unless you are moving 100k


If you were to keep funds within Incognito your fees would be minimal.

If you choose to unshield to the Ethereum network, fees are going to vary because they are based on network congestion. Due to current market conditions, this network is more often than not congested. This causes fees to spike at certain times, or remain “high”. Shielding and unshielding Ethereum or ERC-20 tokens both involve interacting with a smart contract. Fees to interact with a smart contract are higher because, the Txn will need enough “gas” to ensure that it is able to successfully execute the needed functions.


No, I checked the fees on other platforms seconds apart, and am sure incognito is 7 to 8x higher all the time. Checked at several times at random hours.

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Hey @jamessmith have you checked gas consumption of executing smart contracts or a transaction?

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