Apple’s ready to launch API framework ‘CryptoKit,’ Potential for Secure Mobile Wallets

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Tech giant Apple will soon be launching a new Swift API framework dubbed ‘CryptoKit.’

The company announced the framework during its 2019 Worldwide Developers Conference and noted that Cryptokit has been designed to allow for basic cryptographic operations on the company’s anticipated iOS 13 software release.

Apple has revealed that the new application targets iOS developers and will integrate several functionalities, including hashing, key generation, exchange, as well as encryption. Cryptokit is set to replace Apple’s CommonCrypto, a similar framework but without the support for Swift.

According to the company, CryptoKit will free developers from the task of having to manage raw pointers. It will also enable automatic overwriting of sensitive data when deallocating memory, something that will allow iOS developers to shirk lower-level interfaces.

Furthermore, developers can initiate encryption for both sets of data- either at rest or in transit.

Developers can use the common key to carry out computing operations and for comparing cryptographically secure digests. It is will also include operations related to the use of the public-key cryptography, essential when creating and evaluating digital signatures.

The common key will also be useful when generating symmetric keys useful for message authentication as well as for encryption.

Cryptokit features a lot more hash functionality than CommonCrypto, including support for SHA256. However, the secp256k1 curve isn’t supported.

The secp356k1 is a number of blockchains including Ethereum, but its unavailability on CryptoKit means that the framework could have very limited implication for cryptocurrencies.

Even then, many crypto enthusiasts still fancy their potential impact. But a few hold a pessimistic view, like programmer Ronald Mannak who said that the feature won’t turn the regular phone into a hardware wallet.

ZenGo co-founder Ouriel Ohayon concurs with these sentiments, saying that the framework is “pretty much useless” when it comes to its suitability for cryptocurrencies.

He pointed out that, for one, Cryptokit doesn’t make use of relevant elliptic curves needed for blockchains. The application doesn’t also offer “access to the secure enclave,” which is necessary for the export and migration of private keys when needed.

But Ohayon believes Apple will eventually offer these functionalities in the next few years, a development that could be great for the crypto industry.


Disclaimer: This is not investment advice. Cryptocurrencies are highly volatile assets and are very risky investments. Do your research and consult an investment professional before investing. Never invest more than you can afford to lose. Never borrow money to invest in cryptocurrencies.

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