Crypto Investment Security: Balancing Security and Convenience
2021-01-15 BY HACKERNOON, Tony Toreto
2020 is an unforgettable year for Bitcoin investors, the price per coin started to rise up back to $10,000 after Bitcoin Having in May and reached nearly $30,000 at its year end. I won’t be too surprised that 2021 will be another prosperous year for those who hold the mainstream cryptocurrencies, especially more and more institutional investors and large companies recklessly get on board one after another.
It is definitely a good news for most of the crypto-asset holders that they become richer in coming days, and most of the clever investors know very well adopting a hardware wallet to keep their crypto-assets.
Many hardware wallets provide an offline storage or a no-touching using scenario for the users to transfer their crypto-assets from the Exchange to a hardware wallet. Once it is done, the users can really sigh in relief for a pleasant sleep. Furthermore, it could also support the users to transact peer-to-peer to another address, or to manage their crypto accounts, and so on. Nevertheless, it differs a lot to manipulate their crypto-assets on the device that each hardware wallet has its unique proprietary firmware to execute the device. Theoretically speaking, the more complicated procedures to send/receive the crypto-assets on the wallet come with the more secure preventions from the hacking behaviors, such as cyber-attack, malware, man-in-the-middle hacking, physical attack on the device, stealing away the wallet, phishing site, etc. You may imagine to design a comprehensive hardware wallet it shall consider all the potential and possible scenarios the careless users will behave and the sly crackers may act snakingly around cornerson the hardware wallet holders at all times. Is there any chance to get a truly secure yet simple to use hardware wallet?
User Friendly UX
The most attractive feature of SecuX STONE is a 2.8” color touchscreen. Unlike other famous brand hardware wallets, I can intuitively finger-tip on the panel to create the accounts, add coins/tokens, send the funds, and view the full address at a glance on the screen. The receiving address can be shown as a QR code! Not worth mentioning that 4 accounts can be shown on 1 page of the device. It is a clear view of all my crypto assets! I feel much happier about myself when using a modern 3C gadget! I notice that I can rename each of my crypto accounts on the portfolio and every time the onscreen keypad is randomly reallocated for the Device PIN access into the portfolio after an idle time, this is undoubtedly an attentive design in case a peeping tom for stealing the user’s funds. (The SecuX mobile iOS app doesn’t support renaming asset accounts for the time being.)
(SecuX STONE V20, diamond-shape aluminum craft-made)
I started to learn why it requires a large screen on the STONE. When I am going to send funds to my associate as a test, the device appears an instant OTP when pairing with a mobile phone, I need to key-in the correct OTP to confirm the pairing is correct. Then I can use the mobile camera to capture the recipient address without key-in the long letters and digits, after that I have to see the actual address on the device is exactly the same on the host device. Later on I have to tap to confirm the sending on my own STONE wallet. This behavior is rigorous that maybe once a lifetime, there is a malware installed in your friends’ or associates’ mobile phone and you just took it as a randomly host device, it could create another recipient address to induce the sender transfer the funds to the cracker’s wallet. They call it a man-in-the-middle hacking.
I won’t be surprised that SecuX STONE is fully compliant with BIP32, BIP39 and BIP44, that are able to recover existing accounts from the standard 12, 18 or 24-word passphrases. That means you can easily swap your hardware wallet to another one built in the same portal from Bitcoin.org, even once a week for the new models on the market.
Military-level Secure Element
SecuX STONE is equipped with an Infineon Solid Flash CC EAL5+ Security Chip to safeguard the users’ Wallet PIN and Private Key. Such secure level is even higher than most of the banking systems to prevent any cyber and physical attack from the malicious crackers. I personally would rather believe in a German semiconductor manufacturer like Infineon than anyone else to keep my Private Key safely. Meanwhile, there are SecuX STONE proprietary secret channels between MCU, Security Chip and Wallet App that communicate with the strictest authentications to secure the crypto-assets with zero probability leakage from the PIN/KEY generation till the transactions are completed.
Chrome OS Web App
Nowadays Google Chrome definitely domains the web browser market nearly 70%. SecuX STONE adopts a web application which is designed to manage the hardware wallet passively through a host device, a PC or an Android phone. It is similar to a cloud portal accessing to the blockchain that you may retrieve all your crypto-assets through the nodes of blockchain from anywhere at anytime. Meanwhile Brave and Opera browsers are built on the Chrome OS that are compatible with SecuX STONE crypto hardware wallets.
Wireless and its Security
Beside the USB connection, if you own STONE V20/W20, they are equipped with a Bluetooth5 low energy chip which is 2xbandwidth, 4xrange and 8xbroadcasting message capacity than BLE4.2. Once it is paired with your mobile device or PC, you have to confirm the instant OTP (One-Time-Password) from your host device positively with no leaking security of any host device for further transactions. Many users asked me about the security of Bluetooth data transmission, I would say that latest Bluetooth technology has its AES-256 encryption standards to give the absolute security of the data transmission environment between the host device and the hardware wallet.
Normally a big screen comes with a big battery, so it does the STONE V20 and W20. They are all embedded with a 600mAh rechargeable Li-polymer battery that requires for about 2 hrs. for a full charging after the unboxing. You can use it continuously for around 7 hrs., and shall be lasting for about 6 months’ cold storage. During the period, you can review the account balance when booting up the STONE anytime.
Coin Support &Account Expandability
SecuX Technology’s official statement proclaims that SecuX STONE can store up to 500 crypto accounts, although their devices support only 11 crypto-coins that include Bitcoin BTC, Ethereum ETH, Litecoin LTC, Ripple XRP, Bitcoin Cash BCH, Binance BNB, Dash coin DASH, Dogecoin DOGE, Stellar XLM, DigiByte DGB, Groestlcoin GRS, and all Etherum ERC-20 Tokens(e.g. Tether USDT) for the time being. That means if I can add manually ERC-20 Tokens one by one up to nearly 500 accounts mixed with the various ERC-20 Tokens. The most benefit for me is that I can recall my remaining balance on the device at all times even it is in an offline mode.
(SecuX Mobile iOS App now supports BTC, BCH, ETH, LTC, XRP, DGB, GRS and all ERC-20 Tokens such as USDT)
This is a new feature of SecuX Wallet that users can just click one button to buy the crypto coins/tokens immediately on the SecuX Wallet Web App and SecuX Mobile App through Coinify to store the them offline. Coinify will charge the same for those users to buy the crypto coins/tokens either via the SecuX solution or a software wallet on Coinify. Now Coinify serves over 50 countries worldwide with Visa, Mastercard, SEPA support that you may Buy BTC, BCH, ETH, LTC, USDT and XLM via SecuX solution by one click.
From the official website of SecuX, a 360∘comprehensive multi-layered shield design express explicitly the SecuX STONE starts from a simple concept that takes all details into account. There are all possible leakages from the beginning of a hardware wallet, such as its’ supply chains, engineering designs, production flows and producing processes to the warehouse storage, packing with anti-tampering stickers, logistics, and so on. In a way, the most impregnable hardware wallet is born to prevent the users’ crypto-assets from the virus implanting, physical invasion, cyber hacking, clone swapping, man-in-the-middle malware, etc.
I would highly recommend SecuX STONE crypto hardware wallet for all kinds of the cryptocurrency holders unless that you have large amounts for the Alt-coins. According to SecuX Team that the coins and tokens at the moment are “natively” supported. Perhaps this concept slows down the speed to add more coins and tokens in their R&D development. Yet I do respect the insistence and consistency toward their design. For example, I can send my Stellar Lumens from a native-support-wallet without the domain redirection through a linking icon. It is simply convenient for the coin holders to transact the assets from a universal UI hardware wallet. Last but not the least, I list the advantages and disadvantages of SecuX STONE as follows:
– Lesser coin support
– V20 is a bit bulky size in a jeans pocket, yet a trade-off for a much larger screen
– Cross-platform OS compatibility
– User friendly UX
– High level security for crypto funds storage
– Uncompromising transaction process
– Long lasting device on-the-go and balance check
– Personalized wallet and account scalability