Last week we got to announce a new collaboration with computing leader Intel®. BitPay will be launching the first integration of a bitcoin wallet with Intel hardware security.

In this post, we want to share some more details on our Copay bitcoin wallet's integration with Intel® Software Guard Extensions (SGX) and Intel® Identity Protection Technology (IPT) with Intel® Protected Transaction Display (PTD) security technologies.

How Intel®'s Software Guard Extensions and Protected Transaction Display Work With Copay

Intel®'s Software Guard Extensions allows approved developers to execute sensitive operations using Intel®’s hardware-based security. With this enhancement to Copay, the most sensitive operations of a bitcoin wallet can all take place within Intel®'s secure environment, rather than in the user application.

As the name implies, Intel®’s Protected Transaction Display allows an application to display details of a transaction about to take place and gets confirmation from users securely by preventing tampering by any kind malware that may be present on the PC.

For Copay users with desktop wallets, this means that bitcoin private key generation, bitcoin transaction signing, and private key storage are secured – even if the Copay wallet's code is compromised or the machine is infected with a virus or malware.

Using Copay with Intel® Hardware Security

If you're using an Intel® Software Guard Extensions-integrated Copay wallet, you will interact with the hardware integration when you create wallets and sign transactions. During wallet creation, you create a 4-digit PIN in the Intel® Software Guard Extensions and Protected Transaction Display interface. You'll need to re-enter this PIN to sign your spending transaction. Intel’s hardware will protect the PIN entry and show the amount of bitcoin about to be transferred.

Each time this PIN pad appears, the keys will appear in a different order. This presentation helps to prevent potential attackers from detecting user PINs with mouse-click location display coordinates.

If you already use a hardware wallet like Ledger or TREZOR with Copay, you'll find that this Intel® Software Guard Extensions integration provides a similar user experience.

Hardware-Level Security for Bitcoin

Copay is already one of the most security-focused wallets in the bitcoin space. This Intel® Software Guard Extensions and Protected Transaction Display integration allows another level of security for users who want to protect their private keys at the hardware level, without the need to purchase an external device.

The Copay Intel® hardware integration is not yet generally available, but we are working with Intel® to make this technology available to Copay users in the near future. Keep an eye out for new developments here on the BitPay blog.

Intel, Intel® Software Guard Extensions and Intel® Identity Protection Technology (Intel® IPT) with protected transaction display (PTD) are registered trademarks of Intel Corporation in the United States and other countries.