BTChip Launches Highly Protected USB Bitcoin Wallet

GreenAddress and BTChip cooperated for the launch of new USB bitcoin wallet, called HW.1.

The smartcard-based USB wallet was created by BTChip with high security and user-friendly experience in mind. Photo: BTChip/Twitter

The smartcard-based USB wallet was created by BTChip with high security and user-friendly experience in mind. Photo: BTChip/Twitter

GreenAddress partnered with BTChip to launch a USB bitcoin hardware wallet HW.1. New USB wallet, based on the smartcard, was developed by BTChip, while multi-signature functionality of the device was provided by GreenAddress bitcoin wallet.

Nicolas Bacca, the founder of BTChip, said HW.1 will likely appeal to users that are not satisfied with security policies of bitcoin wallets.

He said: “We’re pleased to be the first company to bring affordable banking grade security, while preserving bitcoin user-centred principles. And, with GreenAddress, you are protected by both the card and by the multisig provided by the wallet. It makes it very, very easy for you to access your coins.”

Bacca added that the multi-signature feature will improve user experience. It will simplify and accelerate the process of making transactions and will make it safer.

The HW.1 is used on USB ports through a Chrome application on Windows, Mac OS X, Android or Linux operational systems. In addition, it can be used on Android devices, smartphones and tablets with USB on-the-go functionality.

GreenAddress CEO and co-founder Lawrence Nahum said: “A combination that brings the best of two worlds: multisig and hardware wallets. I expect a lot of people to be using them. Both our Chrome app and Android app support the HW.1 with the latter in final testing and via full USB ports or micro USB OTG adapters.”

He said USB functionality was tested on the Samsung Galaxy S5, S3, Google/LG Nexus 5 and the old Nexus S. In order to work, the app needs Android 4.x.x.

According to Nahum, GreenAddress, which includes HD (BIP32) and multisig features, one of the most innovative bitcoin wallet programs. The HW.1 platform is based on an open-source API, which is compatible with Electrum 2.0.

Speaking to CoinDesk, Nahum told that the recently discovered BadUSB hack will not affect the bitcoin wallet.

Nahum explained that the device could be used if the user doesn’t trust the computer through which the transaction is made. If it is used with GreenAddress, the user can be sent a two-factor authentication code via SMS or email.

He also said the users can confirm transactions on a separate computer until making signatures when HW.1 is used with Electrum wallet.

“It means people still have to backup once they wallet details but then don’t need to remember long mnemonic passphrases. They can bring their wallet with them at all times as it fits a legacy wallet,” Nahum continued.

The HW.1 bitcoin wallet costs €20 with standard shipping, while registered shipping is priced at €10 extra.

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