Last night, the team of SathoshiLabs introduced their newest hardware wallet by Trezor at the Technopark Vaduz. The event was hosted by the House of Blockchain. Momentarily, the team of 15 people is touring through the world to show the wallets new features to the crypto world – such as the compatibility to work with soon 20 of the top cryptocurrencies.

Currently selling two devices, Trezor One and Trezor Model T, Vojtêch Černý, Marketing Manager of SatoshiLabs, presented and compared their two different hardware wallets.

Trezor was the first company to offer a hardware wallet on the private market and tries to reach their goal of featuring 20 of the top currencies on their devices soon. 18 currencies can already be used with the device, compared to other hardware wallets where only a more limited capacity of storage is possible.

The Trezor-wallets are being manufactured in Europe and the team works on new features to be integrated into their devices.

History of the Trezor device

The idea for the Trezor hardware wallet came after Mark Frauenfelder, editor at WIRED, lost 7.4 bitcoins being worth 30,000 Dollars, because his cleaning lady threw away his paper wallet with his private keys on it.

Being unable to recover his password due to the difficulty of regaining bitcoins without the code, Mark had to accept that he would never have access to his 30,000 Dollars again. The difficulty to regain the password information is also due to the Trezor-online-programme doubling the waiting time each time an incorrect password is typed in.

After that loss, the idea of a physical device – a hardware wallet – was born.

Hardware Wallet

A hardware wallet is similar to a USB-stick that can be connected to the Internet. This type of wallet is used to store cryptocurrencies in a so-called cold storage. That means that the device is not permanently connected to the web and attacks are less likely to happen – compared to hot wallets which are constantly linked to the web.

The big advantage of a hardware wallet is that transactions can be authorised without putting the private keys online. More information on the different wallets can be found HERE.

Probably the biggest bitcoin-heist in the history of Bitcoin where private keys were not safely stored is Mt.Gox, where 740,000 bitcoins worth 460 million Euros were lost from their customers in 2014 after an attack. In addition, 27 million Dollars were also missing from the company’s bank account. Even though some bitcoins were regained, about 80 % of the coins were never found again. In order to never witness a similar event again, it is advised to use cold-storage hardware wallets as attacking them is almost impossible.

Private Keys

Private keys are a series of data which only the owner of the cryptocurrencies should have access to. They are seen as a special password that allows the user to spend coins by using a cryptographic signature.

If a private key is lost or stolen, the chance is very little to ever get access to it again. Or as SatoshiLabs likes to emphasise it “Not your keys – not your coins!”

Bitcoin

The Trezor device, as well as most other hardware wallets on the market, started with featuring Bitcoin. Only after some time, other cryptocurrencies were added to the devices.

Bitcoin is the most well-known cryptocurrency based on the blockchain technology. After being created in 2009 by the still not-known Satoshi Nakamoto and his paper “Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System”, Bitcoin works as a protocol and payment network.

Coins can thus be directly transferred from Person A to Person B without any intermediaries. In addition, the transaction is much faster than transferring money via a bank, where the transaction can take up to 5 work days.

Trezor One

The first Trezor device, also seen as the golden standard, is fully open source and makes it possible for everyone to use it. SatoshiLabs believe in the open source world – just like Satoshi Nakamoto – to be trustworthy and to give the world a device with added value. However this makes it open for copycats and fakes, as written in their article. On the website, SatoshiLabs explains how to spot fake devices and where to buy the original ones.

The device was introduced in 2013 and since that, Trezor invited the blockchain community to gather their experience and add information to the device. This is possible through the open-source nature.

Trezor Model T

The second Trezor device was introduced four months ago and has since been sold at various places. The Model T device implements all features the first model offers, but works with a touchscreen. Again, this device is open to the community for improvement.

For the second device, an own password manager is planned. Also, the team works on a new feature, where five different sets of private keys are produced and if lost, any three of them can unlock the device again. This means that a backup and strong safety is ensured.

 

For more information about where to buy the device, visit the website Trezor.io

 

Image: ©RamonaSalzgeber