OKCoin’s Jack Liu Proposes Open Bitcoin Security Standards

Journalist:
January 3, 2015

Jack Liu is head of Institutional Development at OKCoin. On his blog, Jack Liu proposes open Bitcoin security standards and how Bitcoin companies should compete.

Fundamentally, I don’t believe Bitcoin companies should be in the business of convincing customers who is more secure. – Jack Liu, OKCoin

Inspiration came to Liu after watching Olaf Carlson-Wee, Head of Risk for Coinbase, discuss custodial storage of customer funds. The marketing slogans advertising wallet services have become rhetoric. Security should focus on attracting customers. It should focus on security. Compete in speed, UI/UX design, features – whatever you desire. Security should be transparent. The entire Bitcoin ecosystem benefits from enacting collaborative, cross-checked best practices.

Also read: NSA Uses Christmas Holiday to Minimize Coverage of Documents Vindicating Snowden

Jack Liu’s Subtle “Unite or Die,” Maybe?

“Every player in our industry has a vested interest in making sure best security practices are followed by other participants. If one wallet provider learns of an innovative new phishing attack that it has thwarted, the method of prevention should be shared with other wallets and exchanges in a timely way… Let’s not compete on security for it hurts all of us collectively and individually. “

Five years ago would you know what “All customer funds kept in deep cold storage,” meant? Bitcoin does not have a failsafe like the Federal Reserve. No person can flip a switch and inflate the supply of bitcoins, but no “normal” person knows what that means. Most of all, constantly pushing innovation in the customer’s face is gimmicky and cheapens the message.

Security does not work as marketing. Besides, security should be an expectation. No one should be bragging that they “haven’t messed up yet.” All of that effort and resources have a higher return spent working with one another to improve Bitcoin.

Prior to his tenure with OKCoin, Liu worked for Kraken Bitcoin exchange where he was Director of Strategy. Liu is fluent in English and Chinese and spent years working in finance. Upon accepting a position with OKCoin, Jack expressed his desire to assist bridging the communication barrier between English/Chinese Bitcoin communities.

Jack points out the competition does not advertise security. Federal Depositors Insurance guarantees any customer with less than $250,000 need not worry about loss. Further still, in the event funds are not available, the Federal Reserve can step in and bail out the bank. Individuals making deposits in the US don’t even think about security.

Bitcoin cannot compete with the Federal Reserve System as a lender of last resort. Its ability to print currency on a whim and the general disinterest held by consumers for its effect makes it unbeatable. Instead of dozens of individual efforts fighting the battle alone – unite.

Images from Jackcliu.com and Shutterstock.