Jack Dorsey’s Block has announced the full, global rollout of Bitkey – the firm’s self-custodial Bitcoin (BTC) wallet – in a bid to encourage HODLers to take full control of their coins.
“Move your Bitcoin off the exchanges,” said Dorsey via X (formerly Twitter) on Thursday, attaching a link to Bitkey’s website which is currently selling the wallets for $150 apiece.
Bitkey’s Unique Security Model
Per a press release from Block on Thursday, Bitkey’s rollout is available to ninety-five countries across six continents including the United States, Canada, Argentina, Brazil, Chile, El Salvador, and others.
The wallet’s product suite includes a mobile app for users to manage their funds, and a biometrically secured hardware device for storing a private key.
As a “multi-signature” wallet, moving coins from a Bitkey requires permission from two of three keyholders: the hardware device, the user’s phone, and Block itself. This security model is intended to protect users in case they lose one or both of their keys.
For example, if a user loses or replaces their phone, they can still use Bitkey’s cloud backup service to recover their mobile key. Backups stored on Bitkey’s cloud are encrypted, and can only be decrypted using a key exclusively stored in the customer’s hardware device.
Alternatively, if a customer loses their hardware wallet, they may trigger an in-built fund recovery process within their app. After a security waiting period, Bitkey will send users a new device, and will collaborate with the customer to transfer their old balance to their new keys.
Even if both a user’s hardware wallet and phone are lost, they pre-arrange “trusted contacts” to help verify their identity to Bitkey, who can help recover both their mobile and hardware keys for them.
Making Self Custody Feasible
Bitkey Business Lead Lindsey Grossman noted that the wallet was designed to make people feel more secure about self-custody of their keys, and more willing to remove their coins from centralized exchanges.
“People have often felt stuck: worried about the lack of control they might experience on a custodial platform or exchange, yet also anxious about the unforgiving product experiences that exist in other self-custody wallets historically available,” she stated.
Dorsey has endorsed numerous Bitcoin-related initiatives in the past to promote decentralization and security throughout the ecosystem. Last month, he led a $6 million raise for the non-custodial Bitcoin mining pool OCEAN.