Binance Trust Wallet: Present State and Future Plans for 2019

On Thursday (January 24th), the team behind crypto currency exchange Binance's "official" mobile wallet app, Trust Wallet, talked about where things stand now and what new features were coming during the remainder of 2019.

Trust Wallet, which was first released (for Android) on 25 October 2017, was acquired by Binance in July 2018. Originally it only supported Ethereum (ETH) and Ethereum tokens, but after it got acquired by Binance, support for other coins started to happen, with the latest announcement in this area coming on January 9th, when we found out that both the iOS and Android versions of Trust Wallet had been updated such that they supported Bitcoin (BTC), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), and Litecoin (LTC). Furthermore, support for more coins was promised during the next two weeks. 

In Trust Wallet's latest blog post (titled "Trust 2.0 - Making Crypto More Accessible"), the team started by explaining where this multi-cryptocurrency wallet stood now:

  • "As of today, Trust supports a total of 14 different blockchains."
  • "Both our Bitcoin wallet and Litecoin wallet have been built from scratch with native SegWit support in mind, which means you can utilize the latest bech32 standard when sending, receiving and transacting cryptocurrency." The benefit for users is faster and cheaper transactions.
  • "For DApps, we now offer a beautiful, streamlined experience for your ERC-721 crypto collectibles and have added support for DApps across 4 different blockchains (Ethereum, Ethereum Classic, GoChain and POA Network)."

As for future plans, here are the main things on the development team's radar:

  • "... we are committed to supporting the top 20 cryptocurrencies, such as Tezos, Zilliqa and EOS. We prioritize privacy projects. So, you can expect us to soon add privacy coins like ZCoin, ZCash, Monero, and even upcoming and coming ones like Grin and Beam."
  • "... to build an infrastructure to enable support for almost any blockchain easily" through the release of "an open source SDK called “Wallet Core”, which allows developers to integrate their blockchain projects with Trust through a simple GitHub pull request."
  • "Trust Wallet is expanding from its root of mobile only to both mobile and desktop"
  • "With the impending launch of Binance Chain and its corresponding decentralized exchange (DEX), Trust will become the first native decentralized wallet for DEX and also support the new native Binance coin (BNB) on Binance Chain." This means that "you will benefit from Binance Chain’s fast confirmation time and won’t have to worry about using another interface as it’s built into the same easy and user-friendly environment that you are already familiar with."
  • "We are working closely with several manufacturers on not only integrating hardware wallets with Trust, but also setting an industry standard to make adding future hardware wallets more easily."

With regard to the Binance decentralized exchange, earlier today, Binance tweeted that hardware wallets would be supported from day one:

 

Featured Image Courtesy of Binance

Crypto Security and Privacy: Why VPNs Matter

With exchange hacks, crypto thefts and phishing incidents seemingly hitting headlines every week, safely buying and transacting with cryptoassets online has never been more important.

This week saw a particularly poignant lesson in the need for a robust online security strategy, as BitGo Lead Engineer Sean Coonce revealed that he lost over $100,000 from his Coinbase balance as an attacker gained control of his account using a “SIM Port” attack.

One important element in any crypto user’s online security should be a top-tier VPN.

VPNs and Privacy

In addition to a gamut of security and privacy practices crypto users should adopt, including using a hardware wallet and using 2FA authentication (non-SMS), a good VPN can’t be overlooked.

While the top cryptoasset blockchains themselves are quite secure, an individual’s interactions with the blockchain or their funds may not be. VPNs encrypt your data, acting in effect as an extra barrier against anyone who might try and access your information as you are communicating with servers online. The data packets of a crypto transaction in this way become better protected against anyone trying to intercept them as they travel between you and the target - such as an exchange.

When you are using a VPN, all your communications are routed via one of the VPN’s encrypted servers. This also affords you a far greater degree of anonymity, as anyone attempting to track websites you visit, e.g. exchanges, wallets, won’t know when or if you are visiting them.

While these technical features of VPNs make them essential for any crypto user, there are other broader concerns that will likely attract crypto enthusiasts to a quality VPN.

The Spirit of Decentralization

Another important facet of using a VPN is decentralization and the privacy of your information.

Bitcoin was created to fulfil the vision of a decentralized, nation-state resistant currency, allowing people across the globe to exchange value independently. In this vein, VPNs form an essential part of that vision, as it becomes far harder to trace your location.

Whether a VPN stores log files too, will likely form an important part of a crypto users choice of VPN. Some VPN providers, while either dancing around the issue or even claiming that they don’t store records of your internet activity, do in fact log your activity. Choosing a VPN provider that has a proven record of not logging activity, therefore, will matter to many in the crypto community.

One other interesting feature offered by some VPNs is the ability to pay for them using cryptocurrency. While many of the top VPNs don’t offer this feature, those who are particularly conscious of privacy and leaving less of a financial footprint, will factor this capability into their choice of provider.

Getting Started on Your Security Journey

Getting to grips with the potential security minefield that comes with owning and buying cryptoassets is not easy. There are a host of ways you can lose your crypto or leave yourself vulnerable to theft. Making sure you choose the right VPN therefore, should form an important part of your strategy as you seek to secure your crypto and online activity.