Cryptosat Completes Seed Round to Launch Tamper-Proof Crypto-Satellites Into Space
NEWS RELEASE BY CRYPTOSAT
Mountain View, CA | October 28, 2022 06:30 AM Eastern Daylight Time
Cryptosat, a startup launching a Trusted Execution Environment in space, has successfully completed a seed raise of $3 Million. Funds secured from the private round will be used to support its goal of establishing physically isolated cryptographic applications housed in an orbiting satellite.
Led by co-founders Yonatan Winetraub and Yan Michalevsky, Cryptosat’s vision of a tamper-proof root-of-trust through complete device isolation resonated with investors who participated in its private round. Protocol Labs, best known for backing Filecoin and developing IPFS, joined in the pre-seed raise along with Inflection, GoAhead Ventures, DoraHacks, and founders of Phala Network.
Cryptosat has already begun exploring partnerships with organizations interested in creating a trusted execution environment in space. These include the development of a Random Beacon for the Velas blockchain that can generate and transmit trusted randomness from space.
Commenting on this collaboration, Velas CEO Farkhad Shagulyamov said: “Random Beacons must be unpredictable and resistant to any manipulations. We believe that our partnership with Cryptosat will help us develop a top-quality Random Beacon, which has no analogues in the modern crypto industry.”
Protocol Labs is also working with Cryptosat to trial time-based cryptographic primitives such as Verifiable Delay Functions (VDFs) hosted in space. These have the potential to unlock new opportunities in the realm of computing and guarantee ultimate trust and transparency, ranging from blockchain to securing internet transactions.
Using its own satellites built from the ground up, Cryptosat can guarantee that no third party has interfered with the compute environment prior to its being launched into orbit. This provides a unique guarantee that not even nation-state actors can tamper with the operations that are carried aboard the satellite.
Cryptosat Co-founder, Yan Michalevsky said: “Cryptosat provides unprecedented integrity, confidentiality and authenticity guarantees for the most sensitive cryptographic operations by leveraging an environment that provides ultimate physical security: space.”
Trusted setups are one of the most critical components of cryptography given the imperative to prove the inviolability of the process and reassure users that there has been no tampering. In particular, trusted setups are bootstrap popular SNARK schemes, whose security is dependent upon this critical point of conception. Space-based trusted setup eliminates the possibility of physical hack or network intrusion, making near earth orbit a new battleground in the quest for bulletproof cryptography.
Cryptosat builds and launches satellites that power blockchain and cryptographic protocols. Satellites are physically inaccessible and can serve as the most secure root-of-trust that guarantees the confidentiality and integrity of sensitive computations and data. Such tamper-proof satellites can serve numerous use-cases including transaction signing, trusted setups for cryptographic schemes, a randomness oracle, time-oracle (VDF) and more.
Founded by Stanford PhD alumni and second time founders Yonatan Winetraub and Yan Michalevsky, Cryptosatâ€™s team have a background in aerospace engineering, applied security, and cryptography. In 2018, they published the SpaceTEE paper that first introduced the idea of using small satellites for protecting sensitive cryptographic operations and protocols. In May 2022, their first satellite, Crypto1, was launched into orbit. In March 2022, the team completed an experiment onboard the International Space Station.
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