Digital Asset Inheritance — Safe Haven’s TFC (The Family Circle) and why it matters so much

Digital currencies are volatile, unpredictable, and easily lost.

You can lose your keys in a number of ways. Forgetfulness, a corrupt drive, fire, thievery, it could happen to anyone. Some of us take precautions to varying degrees, such as locking our hardware wallets and/or wallet-phones in fireproof safes. Others go even further and bury their wallets in their backyard. These are both relatively safe ways to keep your digital assets secure.

But ask yourself : What happens to your cryptocurrency should you die?What if it happened tomorrow? Today? Do your loved ones know how to access your funds? Or does it all die with you? Safe Haven offers a solution to this problem by providing a safe, secure, and transparent means for one’s digital assets to be inherited by anyone they choose, at any time they choose, while remaining in full control of their investment.

Safe Haven realized long ago that digital inheritance is extremely critical to both the adoption of crypto-assets, as well as the security of those holding onto them. From the world of business, to your family at home, Safe Haven and their solutions have a use everywhere in-between.

I’m sure that a large part of the cryptocurrency sphere either has children, or at least plans to have some one day. Obviously, said people would want their funds to be passed to their children upon any major accident or death. But how would you go about doing this? You can’t just show Billy, and Jimmy *exactly* how to obtain your bitcoin from your wallet, for example, because what if Billy and Jimmy got in a fight while you were on your death bed, and Billy rushed home to snag all the bitcoin for himself? There has to be a better way. Enter: Safe Haven and their “The Family Circle” Plan (TFC).

For one to better understand Safe Haven, and their solutions (such as The Family Circle plan and it’s Share Distribution Protocol), one must understand what “Secret Sharing” is, when it comes to cryptography.

In cryptography, secret sharing refers to any method for distributing a secretamong a group of participants, each of which allocates a share of the secret. The secret can only be reconstructed when the shares are combined together; individual shares are of no use on their own.

I recommend reading page 17 of the Safe Haven whitepaper (4.3 Secret Sharing) to get an idea of the different uses of secret sharing within Safe Haven’s solutions. (Hint: Banks, Enterprises, Inheritance, Crowdfunding, and more)

The Family Circle Share Distribution (TFC SD) Protocol base rules:

The secret is split in shares (can be maximum 1024 bit).
If you want to protect a secret larger than 1024 bits, a hybrid
technique must be applied. The secret must be encrypted with a
block cipher and then we apply only the secret sharing to the key
(openssl and gpg are valid tools).
The secret security level can imply an upper bound for the length,
as short secrets/seeds/keys will be padded with some salt bits.
We can use hexadecimal digits in place of ASCII characters for
I/O, so binary data can be protected/split into shares as well.
While splitting or combining the shared secret, the protocol locks
its virtual address space into RAM or privacy reasons.
The number of distributed share entities is, technically speaking,
limited to 99, we limit this even further to 15, while each entity
can have more than 15 but less than 99.
The validator y has always -1 share less than the n (players/
children).
We need at the least 1 player n and 1 validator y to establish a
complete network of trust in safe havens ecosystem.
Multiple validators can be added.

I’ll lay out an example of TFC in action, taken from the whitepaper (page 24) this scenario involves an individual with 3 children, and one validator (validator = trusted legal entity).

T = (y.n − 1) + (X.n)

T = threshold of the minimum shares needed to reconstruct the secret.

y = the validator of the process, in our case it’s a registered member of the Safe Haven’s Alliance Program

X = the share holders

T = (y.n − 1) + (X.n)

T = (y.1 − 1) + (X.3)

T = (2.1 − 1) + (2.3)

T = (2 − 1) + (6)

T = 1 + 6

T = 7 (Min. # of shares that are needed in order to obtain the shared key). Max of shares will be 8: 6 for the children and 2(-1) for the validator

As long as the children keep their 6 shares safe, their digital inheritances will be secure.

“But what happens if they don’t keep their shares safe?”

Page 28 of the Safe Haven whitepaper details their “Fail-Safe Protocol”.

Safe Haven’s protocol creates a “backup” smart contract on the blockchain that contains different conditions when compared to the primary contract. Everyone is human after all, so there has to be contingencies in place for the inevitable case where a child loses their shares.

The fail-safe shares can’t be given under any circumstances, to one of the n(players/children) as this would jeopardize the complete operation setup by the dealer (parent). In the above use-case (3 children + 1 validator) the children can’t construct the secret share without the validators share (through blockchain Smart Contract query), but when you provide the backup shares, they will be able to do so.

“But what about these ‘Validators’ you mention? How can I trust them?”

Page 30 of the Safe Haven whitepaper (4.6 The Validator’s Share Process)

  • The validator’s share process consists of a pool of legal entity validators, which are members of our Trust Alliance Network. [For info on the Trust Alliance Network, see their whitepaper, I will also be covering that another day]
  • The validator does not store, own, or see the shares meant to be sent to the blockchain; their role is transparent. [Obviously, this is critical if they want anyone to use them]
  • They distribute the shares to the n (players) in a formal way by delivering a legal certificate to n and validating the transaction towards the blockchain.
  • The validator’s share is the share of the person that initiated the process to begin with; he/she safeguards it in the blockchain via a validator in order to keep full rights of the complete secret share. His assets are his as long as he lives.
  • The validator(s) is/are the only one(s) that can retrieve the share previously sent to the blockchain… If the following conditions are met:

The total number of shares of the n (players/children/ stakeholders) have to be present, if not and if needed, the failsafe share can be retrieved by the validator as well if the backup smart contract conditions are fulfilled. In the case that the initiator (parent/dealer) dies, the validator must validate the rightful medical forms in order to initiate the retrieve process of the share stocked in the blockchain.

The initiator/ parent’s share is also transferable to another legitimate person when needed.

Multiple Validators are also an option. (you know, because the validator isn’t immortal either)


Safe Haven successfully finished their Token Generation Event in the early weeks of Q4 2018, raising 157,000,000 VET for the VIP-180 token SHA. SHA is key to the Safe Haven ecosystem, in that it is required to be deposited into a time-locked smart contract to use the services and platform. You can read about the token utilization on page 44 of their whitepaper.

SHA first listed for trading on OceanEx on 21:00, Dec 17th, 2018 (UTC+8). As of the moment I type this sentence, the current SHA market cap is $3,347,895.

Links:

Website

Team

Whitepaper

Protection Plans

AmA with CEO of Safe Haven