On Thursday, November 21st, SafePal participated in Neo Global Development’s (NGD) English Neo Live event. Neo Live is an Ask Me Anything (AMA) style community event that takes place on the official Neo Telegram channel.
SafePal CEO, Veronica Wong, participated in the AMA, where she discussed the background of the SafePal hardware wallet, the team working on the product, and SafePal’s vision to continue building as cryptocurrency slowly integrates into society.
The full transcript can be found below:
Nikkor Wang (NGD EcoGrowth manager): Hi, everyone, welcome to the Neo Live on Telegram! This is Nikkor Wang from the Neo EcoGrowth team. I will be your host tonight.
NeoLive is a marketing initiative from NGD, to bring the latest blockchain knowledge and Neo news to the community. It’s one hour of live chatting at Thursday night 8 pm (UTC+8) in Neo’s official Telegram group. NGD core teams/Neo Eco Project leaders/Neo dev community leaders/pioneering blockchain leaders will be invited to share their latest technological developments and industry insights with the community members.
Our guest tonight is Veronica Wong, CEO of SafePal.
Welcome my friend, Veronica!
Please introduce your self and SafePal.
Veronica Wong (CEO of SafePal): Hi everyone, this is Veronica from SafePal. I’m honored to be here to celebrate the SafePal-Neo cooperation in the Neo family. Look forward to hearing your questions!
A brief intro of SafePal:
SafePal is a secure and user-friendly hardware wallet designed for the masses. It is also the first hardware wallet brand invested in by Binance, one of the biggest exchanges worldwide. SafePal now supports more than 1,500 cryptocurrencies including BTC, ETH, LTC, and BNB. SafePal S1, the flagship hardware wallet, adopts multiple layers of security schemes and intuitive user interfaces, enabling users to store, transfer and trade coins in the wallet in the easiest way.
Nikkor: Thank you, Veronica.
Please, hold questions for the first part of the AMA. We will a have free question session afterward.
Q1: What are advantages of SafePal Wallet against other crypto wallets? Does the SafePal Wallet provides any additional features?
Veronica: Well I anticipated this one.
There are many highlights worth mentioning for this part. I’ll try to make it short:
1) SafePal is built with advanced security architecture.
At the bottom level, SafePal S1 is embedded with a true random number generator, a hardware component that is used to make sure your private key is truly ‘random.’ Check the difference between true and pseudo number generators here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Random_number_generation.
Along with that, SafePal S1 adopts a dual-chip architecture, with one secure element (SE) for the sole protection of the private key. Around the SE there layouts multi-layer sensors. Once a malicious attack is detected, the chip will start self-erase mechanism and wipe out all wallet data.
At the UX level, SafePal S1 adopts QR code communication mechanism, instead of Wi-Fi, bluetooth, USB, or NFC. The device is 100% cold and offline.
2) SafePal is truly easy-to-use.
Point 1, it’s mobile. You don’t need to carry around and trade with a laptop. With a S1 and a mobile phone, you are good to go.
Point 2, the UI/UX is built by a product manager with 10 years experience in software applications. We are focusing on improving every detail that might confuse novice users.
Last and most importantly, SafePal can accommodate limitless currencies…Typically you don’t need to stand the limitation of only managing 3 currencies at a time in the wallet. SafePal can bear it all.
3) SafePal is highly cost-effective.
SafePal S1 only costs $39.99. Some might challenge this saying a lower price usually mean weaker security or quality. But that is not necessarily true. If you think of Amazon Echo Dot selling at $24.99 and Google Home Mini at $25, you will soon find out that the stereotype of always relating product quality with the price isn’t 100% true.
Being firm believers of blockchain technologies, we contribute all our energy into building a more secure, transparent, and accessible product that enables the majority to access our services and blockchain ecosystem. Meanwhile, a reasonable and affordable price point is one of the key factors realizing this potential, thus enabling wider adoption of blockchain technologies in the long run.
Q2: Why is it (SafePal wallet) any better than Trezor or Ledger? How can I regain access to a wallet if it burns out electrically?
Veronica: Most of the advantages of SafePal compared to Ledger and Trezor have been mentioned in the above answer. So I’ll directly go with the second question.
If the wallet breaks down or gets damaged, you assets are still safe because SafePal S1 supports recovery mechanism, and you can recover your wallet with the correct mnemonic phrase on another compatible wallet any time.
Q3: What technology is used to protect users’ digital assets from hacking? Have you ever been exposed to a hacking? I think the security is the most important thing, what about you?
Veronica: No. We have not been exposed to any attacks so far. Security is indeed our cornerstone and we treat it as our life line. It will be a long-lasting focus for the SafePal team, and we are working closely with the top security team in the industry to keep our technology updated.
Q4: What is the future plan to enhance strategy security?
Veronica: Bounty programs and code audits are all on our coming next plan. Will expose more details when it’s settled.
Q5: What problems does SafePal solve and how robust are you to handle these in terms of speed, security, interoperability, and scalability?
Veronica: We are trying to solve three problems about crypto custody:
- Security: Since Bitcoin was born, there are $17 billion worth of Bitcoin missing or stolen. That’s only the tip of the iceberg. Security has been the growing pain-point, impacting people’s confidence in blockchain and cryptocurrencies.
- Easiness: I heard many users complaining about how cumbersome to use a hardware wallet without any technical background knowledge. This should be and will be changed.
- Costly solution: most of the hardware wallets are selling at a higher price between $79.99-$600. It is important to bring the price down to reasonable level and make it more accessible to the masses.
Among the SafePal team, we have:
- Security experts who were the key members of building the anti-cyber-attack system of Huawei mobile devices, and the senior security architect of Tencent.
- Sophisticated developer who used to be the leading architect of QQ Space, a Tencent social product with MAU over 532 million.
- An experienced operational team who has been working on massively adopted platform like QQ and Wechat for 7 years
- Hardware leader who has been working on hardware design and development for over a decade, and successfully launched a hardware product that is now serving nearly one million users across the continents.
- QA expert who used to lead the quality control team in Samsung Smartphone Business Group.
These are all the solid foundation we have to really solve the problems existing in this territory.
Q6: What are the security measures that you have for SafePal Wallet to make sure that all the assets stored in your wallet are safe and secure?
Veronica: First and most important measure, is to build the product safe. Enhancing security over and over again is our endless goal. Reasonable and useful UI/UX is another focus. We want to warn users of dangerous acts when they are using the product.
Secondly, we think it’s also important to teach people ‘how to wisely manage the crypto assets gained from the decentralized freedom.’ We are endowed with the 100% freedom of managing our assets without the constraints from any third-party, but unfortunately not everyone is capable of managing their own private key and money.
User education is also our focus. Hence we’ve been sharing useful tips and articles in our platform.
Last but not least: work with more experts. We are connecting with many security teams, white hats to testify and share professional know-how in crypto custody.
Q7: What is it like working in the tech industry, more specifically with blockchain, as a woman?
Veronica: Interesting question. Never been asked before. Let me organize my thoughts about it.
I have been working in IT industry for nearly a decade. It feels familiar with working in the blockchain industry. I feel excited and inspired everyday after joining this decentralized world because this is a place where you can see…
- Tons of the smartest brains working together to realize a glorious dream.
- Trends always rapidly changing due to the evolution of technology.
- A wide world that is truly connected by borderless and decentralized blockchains.
My feeling? It is thrilling!
Meanwhile it doesn’t bring that much of difference of being a woman in this industry, because we can see a lot of outstanding ladies contributing to this territory. Regardless of gender, we are the same type of people chasing the same goal.
Q8: Do you have a very strategic plan to work with Neo blockchain? How does SafePal help improve security of Neo Blockchain? How does SafePal work, what are its key features?
Veronica: Neo is among the first blockchains that we worked with since SafePal S1 was launched. I personally admire Neo’s vision of utilizing blockchain technology and digital identities to digitize and automate the management of assets using smart contracts, which I believe will be the future of blockchain technology.
SafePal and Neo share so much vision in common that we establised the strategic partnership soon as we got connected. We are honored to safeguard all Neo users to protect their $NEO assets. Along with the partnership we are launching various reward storms among the communities! More details can be found at the link below:
p.s. I personally also hold $NEO.
We are looking to integrate more advanced features on Neo blockchain to deepen mutual collaboration. Stay tuned!
Q9: What is the future plan to enhance strategy security? What are your future plans for more improvements to the SafePal device?
Veronica: The future plans for enhancing security and the device can be found in the Q6 answer.
I’d like to stress again that security is our cornerstone and we will spare no efforts into building the product safer, stronger and better.
For concrete future plan of improvements, here are our coming focuses in the coming Q4 2019 and Q1 2020:
- Currency support: it’s the basis of accessibility to the masses.
- Product iteration: We listened carefully and closely to our community feedback. Until now we have added at least five new features that are proposed by our core users. The best advice always comes from the users.
- Various product lines: we heard users asking if we can build customized or different types of products. We are looking into that as well. Users demands are always diversified. We want to keep updated to the latest user needs.
Q10: Can you make the updates to be smooth, entering the mnemonic words is a little bit frustrating?
Veronica: Thanks for using SafePal and sorry for causing such inconvenience. Do you mind direct messaging me to see if I can help? Some users did provide feedback with the update issues. We are trying to improve here.
Besides, we launched a new feature, enabling users to directly use the wallet after an upgrade by only typing the PIN code, rather than the complete mnemonic phrase. Check it out at the link below:
p.s. This feature was also added because some users replied with the similar confusion.
Maybe you can try upgrading to the latest firmware to see if this is improved.
Q11: SafePal really is one of the fastest growing hardware wallets, it seems every week a new coin is supported. Is there a hardware or software limit on how many coins the SafePal hardware wallet can support?
Veronica: No, we don’t see any limitations here.
Check further details at the link below:
Q12: Does SafePal plan to offer customization of the SafePal hardware wallet in the future? Such as engravings or different colors?
Veronica: Yes, an engraving option sounds interesting. We are considering adding it to the festival limited edition. But it’s still under discussion. Will surely keep you posted. You are providing very good suggestions, and are welcome to share more creative thoughts in our community.
Q13: Do you have, or maybe you want to, implement integration with some stock exchange in mobile application? Do you support currency swap?
Veronica: Yes. we are doing that already. SafePal supported Binance DEX back in July and coming next there will be more. The core concept is to enable people to manage assets without leaving SafePal. As for token swap, partially yes, because we are still thinking of the best way to implement this feature. Any good tools to recommend? Let us know.
Q14: Scalability, security, and data privacy are three important things. How does SafePal plan to overcome these issues?
Veronica: First, SafePal S1 is a decentralized wallet. We don’t access or store users data or private key.
Second, a seamless user experience, relieving security and cost-effectiveness are all important for mass scalability.
Q15: Do you intend to introduce both regular and virtual payment cards in mobile app?
Veronica: If we look further into the future, yes that is one of the possibilities. It might be a little bit to early to talk about this at this timepoint when we only have 1% penetration of internet users in blockchain industry. The current priority would be to gradually increase adoption first.
Usage of SafePal in the future:
- Store and manage crypto (Coins/tokens/NFTs/etc)
- Trade and swap your crypto assets
- BUY/SELL crypto
- Pay for daily services using Bitcoin
- Many more.
Q16: Each application has a back gate (entrance), how can you guarantee the security of the funds?
Veronica: We don’t have back gate in the application.
Q17: What are the biggest obstacles to your project when you implement it to the real world, and what is your plan on overcome these problems?
Veronica: Biggest challenges would be the currently low penetration and adoption of blockchain among common people. This is the common challenge all blockchain companies are facing.
I think it will take a long time before our kids and friends know more about blockchain technology. We need to be patient for this, and keep BUIDLing.
Q18: What is the long term marketing strategy being implemented by your team?
Veronica: Work closely with strategic partners like Neo in the ecosystem.
Listen to our user demands.
Good product speaks for itself among target users.
Q19: Does SafePal support dApps?
Veronica: Not yet.
Nikkor: OK! What a wonderful night! The AMA session has finished.
Thanks for coming to Neo community, welcome to the Neo ecosystem SafePal!
Thank you, Veronica!
For anyone interested in purchasing a SafePal wallet, you can use discount code ‘neosafepal’.
Veronica: Sorry for the limited time. If you folks are interested in learning more about SafePal, welcome to follow us on Twitter or join our Telegram community.
Thanks, Nikkor, for hosting such a great event.
Thank you guys. Have a good day.
Note: Some edits have been made for formatting and readability. The full conversation can be found at https://t.me/NEO_EN/33235.
About The Author: Dylan Grabowski
Dylan is a reformed urban planner with a passion for covering the Neo ecosystem. His objective as a writer for Neo News Today is to report news in an objective, fact-based, non-sensational manner. When not behind a computer screen, he can be found in the mountains rock climbing. Find Dylan on Twitter (@GrabowskiDylan).
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