Why do I need to provide my main address and private key to set up xmr account?

Hi all,

My experience with crypto is so far limited to btc, but I wanted to buy some xmr, so did my reading, set up my wallet (Monero GUI), then went to set up an altcoin account on bisq and I’m being asked for the 2 details that all the info I’ve read so far about xmr warned NOT to give to anyone - my main address (I assume that’s the one starting with 4) and the private viewing key.

So while I’ve already got highly personal information on bisq like my bank details, this is still making an alarm go off in my head, especially since I’m not sure why it’s needed (bank details make sense since they’re unique, but surely I can buy xmr and then just provide a subaddress of my choosing to withdraw the funds to each time?) or more importantly, who has access to this information.

Could someone explain (in layman’s terms please!) why I need to provide those details (it’s been a while, but for a btc account I think all I needed was an address, definitely not any private keys) and how this isn’t a huge privacy risk (my bank details might disclose my identity, but to my understanding, these monero details could provide access to my funds, could they not?).

I’m clearly a bit of a noob, so please go easy on me. :slight_smile:

First of all, providing private view key is not required, just an optional feature where you have bisq send the output of your xmr trades to a different address each time, for privacy, but for bisq to be able to do that it needs the private view key, like with bitcoin you need the master public key to generate all your public addresses. It is private, but also a view key, someone won’t be able to spend funds with it anyway, just your whole wallet would be revealed if the key is ever published.
You could just as well place the address of your choice in the dialog, by not enabling the subaddresses checkbox.
In any case, the xmr private view key will not be shared on the network, it will just be used in your private instance to attach the correct subaddress to the trade.

It is not actually advised to use the subaddresses feature unless you really know what you’re doing, since there were cases where traders who filled in wrong information have lost funds because they were sent to an address they didn’t control.

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Hi suddenwhipvapor, thanks for the response and for the explanation, I’m not sure why I thought those fields were mandatory (I blame the UI font being far too small).

I think the pop-up as soon as you log in to bisq recommending you set up a new xmr account using subaddresses (which coincidentally came up before I even started setting up my first xmr account) also probably had something to do with my confusion!

I’m glad you’ve mentioned the risks of doing this though, because I’d like to avoid as many of those as I can.

So to make sure I’ve got this - I’ve had another look at setting this up, and of course, you’re right, and when I don’t select “use subaddresses” it doesn’t ask for my key, nor my main address. Does this mean I can input a subaddress starting with 8 there? Does that also mean that I should set up a new account with a new subaddress (which I would generate from my Monero wallet, independent of bisq) every time I trade with a new person (as suggested by Monero in their docs - different subaddress for each person/org I trade with)? And in that case, how does doing that differ from asking bisq to do it for me, as in the risks you mention?

Thanks again for your help!

I personally don’t deal with monero, but placing a subaddress rather than your main address in the account address field, where no subaddresses feature has be enabled, should definitely work, the feature being there for you convenience so you don’t have to manually create a new address each time and use a different account :slight_smile: Once you master your confidence, it is actually a good idea to use it to avoid wasting time in repetitive tasks, I believe you should be able to verify the data you entered is correct by checking the automatically generated subaddress against the same subaddress index as shown in your XMR wallet

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Ok, thanks! :grin:

And sorry to go on but just to be sure I’m understanding correctly - if after I get used to managing the whole subaddress thing manually and decide I’d rather bisq do it for me, the whole having to input my main address thing - will that only be “seen” by my personal bisq which will then generate a new subbaddress for each transaction which is what the person I’m trading with will then see? (and where people accidentally input wrong details and lose money?)

Knowing me I’ll probably stick with the more hassle-less risk option, but then I also get frustrated easily, so understanding the alternative is probably a good idea haha

your first assumption is correct.
Other people I believe used a wrong key, which combined with a correct main address would generate a completely different set of subaddresses, but if you compare the first generated subaddress in bisq after you fill in the data and it’s the same as your monero wallet, you’re fine

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Ok, that makes sense.
Thank you so much for all your help!