Israeli Startup Creates Offline Wallet With Access to the Blockchain

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.

Israeli startup GK8 unveiled a cold-storage crypto wallet with on-network transfer capabilities, the company said.

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.

GK8’s project raised $4 million in seed funding from a series of Israeli investment firms, including from the government-run Israel Innovation Authority.

Kakao Teases 2019 Launch of Crypto Wallet, Dapp Partners

Messaging app giant Kakao – which launched its own blockchain in June – has said it plans to release a cryptocurrency wallet dubbed “Klip” later this year.

The firm posted a teaser page to the “More” tab in its KakaoTalk app on Aug. 12, according to a report from CoinDesk Korea, offering a few details of the planned product.

Developed by Kakao’s blockchain affiliate GroundX, Klip will be a digital wallet that manages user information and digital assets. Specifically, it will support Klay, the native token of the firm’s Klayton blockchain, and related tokens based on its KRC-20 standard.

The firm suggests that listed digital assets will be able to be sent to users’ contacts in KakaoTalk in real-time, as with its Kakao Pay product.

Klayton went live on its mainnet on June 27, with GoundX saying it boasts fast response times on the level of legacy web services.

The Klip teaser page also shows a number of logos from early decentralized app (dapp) partner services such as Hintchain, a food recommendation project. Kakao said users can hold and manage cryptocurrencies given as rewards for using these dapps in the Klip wallet.

The storage and trading of other digital assets will be added in the future, Kakao said. These will include including Klay-based non-fungible tokens (NFTs) or crypto-collectibles. Items acquired in Klay-friendly blockchain games will be created as NFTs and will be able to be stored in Klip or exchanged with other users.

GroundX announced last month that a number of blockchain games will use Klay tokens including Klayton Knights (Biscuit Labs), Marvel Clans (Mix Marble) and ExiInfinity (SkyMavis).

In an echo of Facebook’s Libra project, Kakao also said that it will be possible to use Klip through KakaoTalk without installing other apps, such as Kakao Page, Kakao Friends Shop and Kakao Game.

Kakao said it aims to improve accessibility by making Klips available directly from the KakaoTalk ‘More’ tab.

The firm added that it aims to boost adoption of blockchain technology by letting its 50 million KakaoTalk users organically encounter Klayton-based services through Klips.

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