“The lion’s share of credit for this achievement goes to FaceTec, which provided the ZoOm authentication software used by ZenGo.”
Toward the end of June, cryptocurrency wallet provider ZenGo challenged its users — and any other interested hackers, really — to try to break into its wallet, offering a reward of one Bitcoin. And with the month-long challenge now over, ZenGo hasn’t lost anything on its end of the wager, with no successful hacks reported.
ZenGo’s “keyless” approach to developing a crypto wallet was both ambitious and pragmatic. They acknowledged the difficulty in not only understanding cryptocurrency, but also in managing it. To allow anyone to get started and use cryptocurrency daily, the complexities of various currencies and the access to them had to be made simple enough for anyone to use.
A major issue to overcome was account recovery – the ability of an authorized user to get back into their account after ID theft, or a hardware loss or failure. This problem has already cost individuals billions-of-dollars in lost and inaccessible cryptocurrency. Using FaceTec’s ZoOm, an advanced authentication software solution based on face biometrics, provided the extreme level of user ID certainty needed to forego hackable account access solutions like passwords, PINs or legacy biometrics. ZoOm’s certified liveness detection allows end users to log into their accounts through a simple selfie authentication, requiring no specialized hardware — just a standard smartphone camera. And ZoOm has attained Level-2 certification in iBeta’s Presentation Attack Detection test, ensuring that hackers can’t spoof the authentication system by using things like recorded videos of an authorized user, or even sophisticated masks and other 3D artifacts.
That sophistication has allowed ZenGo to implement ZoOm as the primary login system for its eponymous wallet, bypassing the need for archaic security mechanisms like usernames and passwords. And it has ensured the success of the ZenGo Challenge, with no reported hacks of the system despite ZenGo’s having provided a hi-res image of its CEO’s face.
“This challenge demonstrated that even if someone were to obtain your email address and your iCloud account, they still would not be able to hack your wallet,” ZenGo explained in a blog post announcing its success in the ZenGo Challenge. “Attackers would need access to your email, iCloud, and your real life biometrics before they could steal your funds.”
That demonstration of security may help to attract more users to the ZenGo platform, which now enables the in-app purchase of cryptocurrency. And it should help to further elevate the profile of FaceTec, which has established itself as one of the world’s leading pioneers in biometric authentication with its ZoOm solution.