CheckSig: a transparent and auditable way to secure bitcoin.

CheckSig offers bitcoin custody solutions to institutional investors, high-net-worth individuals, and in general to all those who, when it comes to custody, for regulatory or opportunity reasons, cannot go the do-it-yourself way.

Bitcoin is the most successful cryptocurrency and one of the best private money ever. As a new asset class, it provides significant risk diversification to an investment portfolio: for an investor, it is only rational to have a percentage of their portfolio in bitcoins.

According to Ferdinando Ametrano, CheckSig Chief Executive Officer, Bitcoin is the equivalent of gold in the digital realm: as such it might play a disruptive role in our digital civilization and the future of money and finance”.

There are many ways to store and manage bitcoins: software, paper, or hardware wallets. However, to directly hold bitcoins is dangerous for private people (as it exposes them to possible personal attacks), non-compliant for many financial institutions, and risky for arbitrageurs and traders.

Bitcoin is about financial sovereignty and having direct control of your private keys because, as people say, “not your keys, not your bitcoins”.  Nonetheless, for institutions, high-net-worth individuals, and nontechnical investors, a custodial solution is convenient or even prescribed by regulationsays Paolo Mazzocchi, CheckSig Chief Operating Officer.

In these scenarios, CheckSig helps institutions, individuals, and market operators with transparent bitcoin custody services. Its multi-level, multi-party, multi-location custody solutions provide periodic proof-of-reserve blockchain transactions, are hardened by customized multi-signature hardware, and are covered by insurance guarantees.

CheckSig implements a multi-party custody protocol that avoids reliance on “security by obscurity”, being an auditable public open standard subject to peer review. We provide full transparency to our clients: they can always independently verify that their assets are held in a secure manner”, adds Eric Ehlers, CheckSig Chief Technology Officer.

The guiding principles of CheckSig’s custody protocol are:

  • to store the bitcoins in such a way as to minimize risk of loss of funds through theft, error, or other mishaps;
  • to rely on the Bitcoin protocol implementation for security wherever possible, rather than inventing new functionality or procedures;
  • to remain neutral regarding future changes to the Bitcoin protocol.

CheckSig is a fintech start-up established in October 2019, founded by Ferdinando Maria Ametrano, Eric Ehlers and Paolo Mazzocchi. It is based in Italy but relies on an international team located in Singapore, United States and various European countries. As seed money, CheckSig raised one million euros for a post-money company valuation of 5 million. It is expected to start offering its custodial services at the end of Q1 2020.