Digital asset security specialist, Fireblocks, announced the development of a new multi-party computation, or MPC, algorithm on May 13. The algorithm is claimed to improve the transaction speed for secure digital asset transfer by 800%.
Furthermore, digital asset custodians and vendors will be able to access and use the new protocol without cost. Fireblocks does not intend to apply for patents on the new technology.
Multi-party computation explained
MPC is a form of cryptography which allows multiple parties to calculate the output of a function, taking inputs from each party, while keeping those individual inputs private.
In terms of digital asset transactions, it enables a private key to be split into multiple parts, and then recreated without the pieces needing to be assembled on a single machine first.
Essentially, it removes the single point of compromise by transforming private keys into liquid form through securely distributed transaction signing.
It also tends to incorporate an element of threshold multi-sig technology, whereby only a certain threshold number of the private key sections are needed in order to sign a transaction.
Making MPC faster and safer
The new protocol, dubbed MPC-CMP, is based on the current industry standard for MPC. It manages to increase the transaction speed by 800% by reducing the number of rounds needed to securely sign an MPC transaction from nine to one.
This is achieved by halving the number of interactive rounds down to four, of which three can take place in a pre-processing stage. This leads to a non-interactive signing protocol.
The algorithm also incorporates security improvements, such as automatically refreshing key shares every minute, protections against advanced attackers, and a universally composable proof out-of-the-box.
Making MPC free-er
Fireblocks have made the protocol available for any digital asset custodian and MPC vendor to use free of charge.
The company has stated that it will not be applying for patents on the new technology. They have also opened up to peer review to ensure the protocol’s strength and efficiency before implementation. Fireblocks CEO, Michael Shaulov, explained the rationale behind such a move:
“As financial institutions look to launch and operationalize digital asset services, we believe MPC-based technology will be paramount to delivering an experience comparable to the speed of traditional assets. We’re freely providing custodians and MPC vendors with our new algorithm to drive innovation, boost adoption, and prepare digital assets for the broader institutional market.”
Fireblocks’ platform provides institutional investors with a way to securely transfer digital assets between exchanges, wallets, and counterparties. As CryptoNewspeople reported, it recently hit monthly transfer volumes exceeding $7 billion. This news came alongside an expansion to meet demand in the Asia-Pacific region.