Clef, the passwordless authentication system “inspired by Bitcoin,” just announced its partnership with AlphaPoint and their Bitcoin exchange platform. It comes in the wake of previous partnership announcements such as as Koinify and Bitspark.
Clef can authenticate a user without a password using two-factor authentication. Instead of asking the user to recall a string of information, the login screen generates an animation called the Clef Wave, which the user scans with a mobile device. The user then enters a thumbprint or PIN number into the Clef app, proving he or she has both his or her phone and an additional inherence or knowledge factor.
The app stores a private key, just like the ones found using Bitcoin. Also similar to Bitcoin, nothing critical is stored on Clef’s servers: your PIN or thumbprint is digitized and encrypted using your private key, and they need only have your public key to verify the resulting hash is valid.
This approach has proven appealing to the crypto community, but Clef hopes to take the exchange industry by storm. Their most recent partnership with AlphaPoint is a big move for the company, which will expose them to many new Bitcoin traders.
AlphaPoint provides white-labeled cryptocurrency exchanges, with the option to link to the rest of the network to gain extra liquidity. Developing an online exchange is actually a long and arduous process; many exchanges choose to use AlphaPoint’s software, instead, which they can rebrand as they please.
Their list of clients includes notables such as Bitfinex and CoinTrader, and combined accounted for approximately 20% of global trading volume in 2014. That year, they raised $1.35 million to further refine and develop their platform, and the list of clients continues to grow.
Every exchange in the network will now have the ability to the Clef user authentication system, which could make it a household name among Bitcoiners.“We’re very excited to offer Clef’s robust, intuitive solution and believe it will help ensure more traders use 2FA to protect their accounts,” said Joe Ventura, AlphaPoint’s Chief Technical Officer.
Other exchanges are also considering adopting the Clef system. Their competitors will likely be forced to offer passwordless authentication, as well, or Clef might become the modus operandi in the decentralized space.