Cryptocurrency is new and evolving, but human error is very old and isn’t going away, which is why almost as soon as cryptocurrency became available, people were losing huge sums of money. Not just losing money by making bad investments, though there have been lots of those, but literally losing money as in screwing up big time. Asaf Naim, founder and CEO of Kirobo.io., an Israeli startup determined to make blockchain as simple and secure as online banking, thinks cryptocurrency technology needs to make room for human error.
Cryptocurrency is gaining credence with mainstream financial institutions, though it is still viewed suspiciously by various global financial regulators. We asked Asaf Naim what got him involved with cryptocurrency, the current state-of-play, and what he thinks the future holds for the newest form of money.
How did you get your start in the cryptocurrency space? What drew you in?
I’m an accountant by trade but I’ve always been a big fan of technology and its applications for business. It was inevitable that I’d eventually arrive at blockchain technology – it’s the future of commerce and finance. It gives people unprecedented financial freedom which can only make for a more dynamic and vibrant world economy.
What demographic would you say take up the majority of crypto users?
Up until now the demographic was similar to that of traditional finance – affluent males, overwhelmingly – however, recent reports suggest that this is changing. For example, Gemini recently found that more than half of those describing themselves as “crypto-curious” are women, while Statista reported that some of the highest rates of adoption are found in the third world. We believe that cryptocurrency is for everyone, and we’ve already begun to experience this.
What is one piece of advice you would give someone who would like to start trading in this industry but doesn’t know where to start?
Like all investment opportunities, it’s vital to thoroughly educate yourself before risking any money. In terms of crypto, this means looking at the fundamentals of the project you’re interested in – does it have a real purpose? Does the product work as advertised? Has the project received funding from established bodies? The cryptocurrency industry is a very promising avenue for investment as long as the investor does their due diligence.
What should readers know about Kirobo’s Undo Button Feature?
Kirobo’s Undo Button is a retrievable transfer service that’s already processed more than $1 billion worth of cryptocurrency transactions for users worldwide. It requires the sender to set a passcode, which they communicate to the recipient. The recipient must enter the correct passcode in order to collect the funds, and until this happens, the sender can retrieve their money. It’s not really possible to send money to the wrong person with this service, and because the Kirobo server sits outside the blockchain and is completely non-custodial, there’s no risk of hacking or downtime. It can be used for BTC, ETH, and ERC-20 transactions, so far.
What is the biggest crypto transaction mistake that you or someone you’ve known made due to human error?
We receive messages often from crypto users asking if we can help get their money back. Last week, for example, one user copy-pasted the wrong address and sent 96 ETH to the wrong person. That’s more than $220,000 at current market prices, and he’ll never get it back. Unfortunately, we cannot help people in this situation, but we can prevent these things from happening in the first place.
How do you envision the future of cryptocurrency?
I think that blockchain technology is going to take over the world. The DeFi applications we’re seeing are providing a real alternative to traditional financial institutions, and with services like those of Kirobo, mass adoption for everyday use is just around the corner.