MetaMask’s Bid to Prevent Billions in Crypto Theft
In response to a 2023 surge in crypto theft and scams, MetaMask, the most widespread self custody crypto wallet in the industry, has collaborated with Blockaid to today announce the introduction of “privacy-preserving security alerts” in the MetaMask wallet extension itself.
“This new feature makes MetaMask the first self-custody web3 wallet to integrate native security alerts, proactively preventing malicious transactions, protecting users from scams, phishing, and hacks, all while preserving users’ privacy.”, reads a release.
MetaMask users, on desktop, should now have the option to opt into the feature under the ‘MetaMask experimental setting’, with mobile launch of the feature slated for some time in November. The end goal is for the addition to be “seamlessly integrated and enabled into the wallet by default” – something expected by the first quarter of 2024.
A Unique Feature in the Industry
As explained in a release shared with BSC News ahead of time, existing wallet security alerts rely on sending transactional data to a third party, carrying with it no small degree of third party risk. MetaMask’s alerts, in contrast, effectively simulate the results of a transaction, whilst preserving the user’s privacy over said transaction.
“With these native privacy-preserving security alerts, MetaMask is not only enhancing user safety but also setting a new standard for privacy-preserving security in the web3 ecosystem. Privacy is a core value of web3 and should not need to be sacrificed to improve usability. Instead, it should be a guiding principle in the development of solutions to improve the space. As we continue to innovate, we remain committed to empowering users and providing them with the tools they need to navigate the world of web3 with confidence”, said Dan Finlay, Co-Founder of MetaMask and Chief Ethos Officer at Consensys.
MetaMask’s partner, Blockaid, estimates that a staggering 10% of the some 5,000 dapps introduced daily to the ecosystem are malicious in nature, with ‘unintended transactions’ translating to MetaMask users losing funds becoming commonplace.
The thesis is validated by a recent ConsenSys survey to which 47% of respondents cited scams as a major barrier to entry for the blockchain ecosystem.
What’s more, the introduction of a similar feature by MetaMask and Blockaid, but with regards to OpenSea, has reportedly already seen a staggering $500 million in theft averted.
“In our commitment to prepare for the broader adoption of web3 by the next billion users, we acknowledge the importance of developing features that prioritize ease of use and accessibility while staying aligned with the core values of web3. This is the driving force behind our focus on creating a privacy-preserving version of security alerts, one that eliminates the need to share each transaction and signature request data with third parties. Blockaid’s dapp transaction validation solution protects users from malicious transactions without compromising their privacy”, added Barbara Schorchit, Senior Product Owner at MetaMask.
This new feature is only the latest of MetaMask’s 2023 push to improve the user experience, with the launch of the hotly anticipated ‘Snaps’ feature arriving in early September.