Module #3 - Making Your First Investment

Lesson 1 - Setting up Your Coinbase Account

Okay, so we are now ready to setup your Coinbase account. First, you will need to register.

Step 1: Go to Coinbase and Click on Signup

Coinbase: sign-up page

I am going to talk you through this in simple steps, please do not skip any of this as every single thing we do here is of vital importance.

Please head over to and click on the sign-up button, highlighted on the right.


Step 2: Enter Your Basic Account Information

Coinbase: create your account page

Now you need to enter your basic account information. You should be creating an individual account and not a business one, for this, please enter::

  • First name
  • Last name
  • Email address: I would recommend setting up an independent email address which you don't use for anything else with a secure service like ProtonMail
  • Password: remember to use something random and secure, a collection of numbers, letter and symbols and for now, write this down on a piece of paper and also consider securing it using something like LastPass or Dashlane. As you are typing your password, the page will highlight whether it is too weakgood or excellent. Ensure that your password is random enough to ensure it is excellent.
  • Confirm you are not a robot
  • Agree to the terms and conditions

Once you have entered everything above, click on the create account button.

Step 3: Confirm Your Email Address

Coinbase: email for verifying your email address

Before you can access your account, you will need to confirm your email address. You can do this by accessing the email client where your emails are sent to and clicking on the Verify Email Address button.

Step 4: Login to Your Coinbase Account

Once your address is confirmed you will now be able to login to your Coinbase account; you can do this by entering the email address and password you chose when you signed up. While there is an option to keep you signed into your account, for good practice, I wouldn't recommend using this feature.

Coinbase: adding your phone number

Coinbase: login screen

Step 5: Add Your Phone Number

Coinbase: secure your account with your phone number

As this is the first time you will have accessed your account, you will be required to enter a phone number for security, once you have done this click send code.

Step 6: Setting Up Coinbase

Coinbase: dashboard

You should now be logged into Coinbase and you will be able to see your dashboard.

Before you start having a dig around, the first thing we must do is set your account up correctly, therefore:

  • Click on Your Name in the top right and then select Settings
  • On the settings page, click on the tab for Security

Step 7: Enabling Two-Factor Authentication

Coinbase: enabling your Two-Factor Authentication

Your Coinbase account will be set up with SMS Two-Factor Authentication; we want to switch this to either Google Authenticator or Authy.

My preference is Google Authenticator but download either app on your phone, and then follow the additional steps below.


  • Click on the button for Enable Authentication
  • You will be sent a code via SMS
  • Enter the code you receive into the popup 
  • Click on the Verify button


Coinbase: confirming your Two-Factor Authentication

  • A new popup will appear
  • Open the authenticator app on your phone
  • You will then need to scan the QR code on the screen (this is the square with the black and white pattern)
  • Write down the secret code, which is provided, on a piece of paper and keep it somewhere safe, as this allows you to reinstall your 2FA should you lose a device
  • Your phone will identify the QR code and provide you with a verification code
  • Enter the verification code which appears on your phone and click Enable

Once you have completed this, you will notice on the settings screen that your Two-Factor Authentication method is now set as Authenticator. From now on, every time you log in to the Coinbase website, you will also need to add the authenticator code from your app.

Note: you should install your authenticator app on two devices, ideally your phone and a tablet, just in case you lose one of your devices. Therefore, each time you setup Two-Factor Authentication, you should be taking the photo of the RQ code with both devices.

Module #3: Lesson 1 Summary

  1. Security is important when setting up your Coinbase account: so operate with a strict password policy
  2. Extra protection is available with Two-Factor Authentication: so it is essential you set this up
  3. Don't use SMS based Two-Factor Authentication: it is much less secure than using Google Authenticator or Authy

Now your Coinbase account is setup, you can move onto Module 3: Lesson 2 and verify your account.