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What is a Smartkey?

When you open up a bank or email account, or any account allows you to send and receive information for that matter, you always need a method to access that account. Generally this is your login information; your login is your address where people can find your account and send information to you (like an email) and your password is what gives you access to the account’s privileges where you can send information to other peoples’ accounts. On a broader level, any collection of users that can send and receive information from account to address is known as a network. All networks in this sense require security features that protect both the users and the transactions on the network from being corrupted.

Blockchain Private Keys and Addresses

Blockchains are also networks and work in the same fashion. On the Bitcoin Blockchain, users can send and receive Bitcoins over the network. The network security of Bitcoin when it was first released was truly revolutionary as many Blockchain experts know. Before Bitcoin was released with the first Blockchain Network, security for accounts and transactions for most peer to peer cloud networks was managed by large corporations with loads of financial and technical capital. What the Bitcoin introduced was a decentralized security system that incentivized miners to solve cryptographic issues on the network in exchange for Bitcoins, hence “mining”. This is important because all of the transactions on the Network would be corruptible without the encryption efforts done by miners in the mining process.

In order to participate in this network, a user must first have a Digital Wallet where they can purchase coins for sending. Every wallet comes with an address as a receiving end, and must have some sort of secure password for private access. In cryptographic terms, an address is known as a public key and the password for private access to the wallet is known as a private key. What most entry level Blockchain readers believe is that mining secures only transactions on a immutable digital public ledger (also and commonly known the blockchain), but miners also contribute their decentralized efforts to create secure private keys and addresses for users on the network to keep the users’ accounts safe from attacks and possible corruption. In this way, the Proof of Work system of security envisioned in the first Blockchain provides decentralized security solutions to all aspects of the Blockchain Network.

Current Issues with Private Keys and Security

While the advancements in account security brought to us by Blockchain Technology may sound enticing, it is still difficult as always to keep track of addresses and private keys as a user. This is because addresses are usually long Hexadecimal strings such as “A23E36F27C8969” or “D5429FEA2537”, and private keys are no different. Therefore, if you wish to invest in multiple digital assets or cryptocurrencies and can only find this possible by using different wallets, you will have to remember all of the addresses and private keys associated with your various wallets. 

To solve this issue some Blockchain Networks nowadays will allow users to attach a domain name to their address in exchange for maintaining a minimum balance of coins in their wallet. For example, if you wish to access your address using your name or an email, you can do this just as long as you keep a minimum amount of coins in that wallet. What ensuring a minimum amount of coins in the wallet does is protect the wallet and its domain from wallet squatting; the process by which malicious users can take up space in another wallet from another user to store coins. While this might sound like a concerning issue, it is truly not anymore; most Blockchains have incorporated wallet domains or some other type of technology into their wallets to deter malicious users and attackers from wallet squatting. It is necessary to say however that these advancements in Blockchain Technology still do not offer solutions to the issues of maintaining multiple wallets with various private keys. Even if you have a wallet domain for easy pubic access, you still have to go through the misfortune of remembering complex sets of strings in order to remember your private keys and get full privileges to send and sign off on all transactions from your wallet across the Blockchain Network. .