NEW YORK (Reuters) -Payments firm Square Inc is considering creating a non-custodial hardware wallet for bitcoin, the company’s chief executive officer Jack Dorsey said on Friday.
Bitcoin wallets can be stored offline or online at cryptocurrency exchanges, venues where bitcoin can be bought and sold for traditional currencies or other virtual coins.
With a non-custodial wallet, you have sole control of your private keys, which in turn control your cryptocurrency and prove the funds are yours. With a custodial wallet, another party controls your private keys. Most custodial wallets are Web-based exchange wallets.
Dorsey first made the announcement in a tweet on Friday and then gave some details at a conference called Bitcoin 2021 in Miami. Dorsey is also the chief executive of Twitter Inc.
“We don’t want to compete with other hardware wallets out there,” Dorsey said. “We just want to take it to the next level and get to 100 more million people, which have non-custodial solutions.”
As bitcoin and other crypto-currencies have gained in popularity, many companies have emerged to serve a growing need to protect these assets from online theft.
“If we do it, we would build it entirely in the open, from software to hardware design, and in collaboration with the community,” said Dorsey.
Shares of Square were last up 1.3% at $215.28.
The company has further raised its bets on bitcoin since it disclosed in February https://reut.rs/34PFSZb it had invested $170 million more in the cryptocurrency.
(Reporting by Gertrude Chavez-Dreyfuss in New York and Chavi Mehta in Bengaluru; Editing by Shinjini Ganguli and Jonathan Oatis)