Gemini Boosts Custody Security With Shard X Acquisition

  • Shard X’s MPC cryptographic technology is considered more secure, as it private keys are broken into shards and distributed to various parties.
  • While the terms of the deal have remained undisclosed, all three members of Shard X will become part of Gemini’s U.K. affiliate.
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Cryptocurrency exchange and custodian Gemini will increase the security of its custody offering through an acquisition of custody startup Shard X, Gemini said in a press release on 9 June.

According to the announcement, the exchange plans to integrate Shard X’s multi-party computation (MPC) technology into its infrastructure to boost the speed at which customer assets are transferred, provide support for new asset listings, and increase the usage of the Gemini platform. The MPC cryptographic technology is also considered to be more secure, as private keys are never constructed in full, but are rather broken up into shards that are distributed between various parties. The COO of Gemini, Noah Perlman, said in a statement:

“Integrating Shard X’s MPC technology into Gemini’s custody enables us to meet this demand for fast withdrawals, interacting with DeFi staking, or the transferring of digital assets with greater efficiency. MPC technology provides a safe and uniform approach for achieving this speed across multiple cryptocurrencies.”

Founded in 2018, Shard X claims to be the first company to offer MPC technology on Entrusted nShield hardware security modules (HSMs), which provide the accessibility of hot wallets and the security of cold storage. While the terms of the deal were not disclosed, all three members and co-founders of Shard X — Yaniv Neu-Ner, Nikita Lesnikov, and Navaho De Wet — will become part of Gemini’s U.K. affiliate.

The acquisition is the latest in a series of moves Gemini has taken in the last months to boost the security of its platform. Back in April, the firm integrated ComplyAdvantage’s AML and risk management solution to automate the majority of its risk monitoring. Gemini now makes use of the company’s proprietary data asset and advanced machine learning to detect sanctions and adverse events during customer onboarding.

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