Israeli Startup Creates Offline Crypto Wallet with Online Connectivity
Israeli startup GK8 unveiled a cold-storage crypto wallet with on-network transfer capabilities, the company said.
GK8’s technology removes many of the dangers internet-accessible crypto wallets face – hacks, attacks, unexplained losses — while preserving their more convenient features, such as sending and receiving digital assets.
In an interview, GK8’s co-founder Lior Lamesh told CoinDesk that a “unidirectional connection” links its wallet directly to the
blockchain, where it transfers assets as conventional wallets do. GK8’s one-way signaling does not itself operate on the internet.
GK8 says its techniques “bypass core assumptions related to
cryptocurrency transfers and eliminate attack vectors to any asset transfer.”
Several cryptography experts are among GK8 board members, including Prof. Eran Tromer, one of security
token Zcash’s founding scientists.
In a video, Tromer said: “GK8’s cold wallet solution improves on the state-of-the-art by having essentially unidirectional communication from the wallet to the outside and never accepting raw information from the outside back into the cold wallet.”
“This minimizes the attack surface and prevents attacks,” he said.
GK8 secured five patents for its innovations, according to the announcement. A patent abstract associated with Lamesh described the technology as follows:
“The digital wallet device is electronically disconnected from other digital devices and comprising: a cryptocurrency integrated circuit (IC) that is isolated from any computer interface” … “and a unidirectional communication hardware for sending said transaction to a communication device for broadcasting said transaction via a network.”
The founders are veterans of Israeli cybersecurity, according to Lamesh. Both served as cybersecurity experts to the prime minister before founding GK8 in 2018.
Lamesh said that he and co-founder Shahar Shamai began working on GK8’s cold wallet after finding security vulnerabilities in “state-of-the-art” wallets. They were both bothered by the risks of storing assets online.
“We tried to think: how can we make a fully operational cold wallet with no internet connection at all. And we ended up doing exactly that,” Lamesh said.
He said that GK8 seeks to become the cold wallet of choice for institutional investors.