Tropic Square

Announcement

John Sirianni to scale up Tropic Square as new CEO

May 14, 2024

3 min read

Tropic Square, designers of transparent and auditable secure chip solutions, welcomes John Sirianni as Chief Executive Officer (CEO). Sirianni leads the company to scale up as they approach the pre-production tape out of their flagship product, TROPIC01, this year.

With more than two decades in the semiconductor and cybersecurity industries, Sirianni brings his knowledge and expertise to lead Tropic Square to global scale. His previous experience includes embedded systems security consultation, strategic commercialization, and leading international deep-tech scale ups.

John Sirianni shares his vision for the company, stating The engineering staff has crafted an industry leading open-hardware and auditable security chip, which enables device design teams to verify advanced security functions as they require.  Now it’s time to make it generally available for security sensitive device designers.  Device developers of AI-IoT edge devices, gaming & A/R devices, autonomous systems, M2M payment systems, advanced hardware authenticators are in need of open, transparent, and auditable cryptographic processing. Security through Transparency is what we are about at our core.

This year, Tropic Square is on route for the pre-production of TROPIC01, a transparent and auditable secure cryptographic coprocessor. Under Sirianni’s leadership and guidance, the team is eager to bring their advanced cryptographic coprocessor chip TROPIC01 to the wider market, to address the growing demand for secure hardware devices.

“I’m super excited to have John on board. We have been very product development focused and now it is the time to advance the business side of our operations. I’m looking forward to working with customers from a broader market, and showing them that there is an alternative to security by obscurity. They can have cars now, instead of just faster horses. Offering this chip to the initial customers will also give us valuable feedback, so we can further refine our product to meet market needs” says Jan Pleskac, CTO.

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About Tropic Square

Tropic Square is a private company founded in 2020 as a response to the need for open architecture secure element chips. We develop and produce secure semiconductor device solutions that enable the auditability of its security implementations. Our chips and IP are tested by experts in the open source community and made available for community use. Tropic Square develops and produces auditable chips that meet the high security requirements of our customer’s design teams. 

For more information, visit tropicsquare.com

Lena Pham

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Trezor now available in Spanish, French and German

Trezor

2 min read

Trezor’s introduction of world languages embodies company’s commitment to broadening access to crypto security

Trezor, the original bitcoin hardware wallet company, today introduces Spanish, French and German language services for its market-leading cold-storage devices and its cryptocurrency management app, Trezor Suite

The availability of Trezor’s leading crypto technologies in three world languages, alongside the existing English version, embodies the company’s commitment to helping as many people as possible to enjoy the freedom, financial self-sovereignty and utility of cryptocurrencies. Trezor will also launch Czech language services in April for the benefit of users in its home market, one of the world’s leading Bitcoin hubs.   

With Spanish spoken by 599 million people worldwide, French by 274 million and German by 170 million – more than a billion people in total — the introduction of these languages to Trezor’s products and services echoes its goal of playing a key role in onboarding the next billion cryptocurrency users. 

Matěj Žák, Trezor’s Chief Executive Officer, said: “From the outset, our mission at Trezor has been to extend access to Bitcoin to as wide an audience as possible by enabling people to buy, manage and store it as simply and securely as possible. Enabling more people to use Trezor services in their preferred languages is an important part of delivering on that promise.”  

The price of bitcoin has once again recently reached an all time high, an event that is likely to encourage more cryptocurrency enthusiasts worldwide to explore the merits of self-custody. The collapse of high-profile crypto businesses in recent years highlighted the risks for the public of holding their cryptocurrencies on centralised exchanges – a risk encapsulated in the phrase, ‘not your keys, not your coins’. Making Trezor devices, firmware and the app available in Spanish, French, German and Czech will ease the path to self-custody for crypto owners who are less confident in English. 

The new language services will be available on the Trezor Safe 3, the entry-level hardware wallet for crypto newcomers and novices, on its flagship touch-screen Model T, and on the Trezor Suite management app. 

To optimise security and give users peace of mind, new Trezor devices arrive without firmware installed so that customers can be confident that their hardware wallets have not been tampered with. Users’ preferred language option will apply on the intuitive yet powerful crypto management app and also on their new device. Existing users can also change their language preferences for one of the world languages on Trezor Suite. 

Trezor will release the new language capabilities initially as a Beta version that will be continuously refined. 

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About Trezor

Trezor is the original bitcoin hardware wallet company, founded in 2013. It pioneered the development of the self-custody of crypto assets, empowering individuals with an open-source device that enables anyone to easily and securely hold cryptocurrencies.

Trezor has expanded to offer a whole ecosystem of easy-to-use both hardware and software  products that help protect users - from crypto novices to crypto experts. In 2023, the company launched its Trezor Academy initiative which educates grassroots communities across the African continent on safe participation in the bitcoin ecosystem. Trezor is part of SatoshiLabs, a technology holding company with various interests in crypto and bitcoin companies.

Trezor Suite is now live!

Trezor

2 min read

Trezor Suite is a new desktop application from SatoshiLabs, producer of the original hardware wallet Trezor. This application complements the most secure way of storing cryptocurrencies and adds yet another layer to people's cryptocurrency experience.

Security first

Trezor has created many security features that have been adopted as the industry standards for safe handling of bitcoin. Trezor Suite is adding to this with its easy to use app that helps battle one of the most painful troubles out there - phishing attacks. Using a desktop application provides isolation from cloned sites and malicious links, and the software build can be independently verified unlike a website. Another benefit is that a desktop app is capable of implementing far more powerful features than its browser-based counterpart.

Trezor Suite onboarding screen

“We understand that using cryptocurrency every day makes people vulnerable to certain scams and attacks. An application on your desktop or mobile device that you have thoroughly checked and approved provides a good solution. But we wanted to do it right and also deliver features that empower hardware wallet users and bring them closer to the future of bitcoin use.” Matěj Žák, Head of Product at SatoshiLabs

More on security: Trezor Suite: Security made simple

Usability for wider adoption

Trezor Suite's new design introduces an easy onboarding process for those new to hardware wallets and the app is complete with a convenient straight-to-custody exchange service from Invity.io. These and many other user-focused features make the whole experience of using bitcoin accessible to everybody. Being able to compare offers from many different exchanges when selling, buying or exchanging cryptocurrencies brings a new level of transparency, with the added benefit of each transaction being secured by Trezor, driving mass adoption and ensuring self-custody. The brand-new onboarding process in this public release of Trezor Suite makes sure new users understand all the key steps involved in securing their assets: it provides a walkthrough of creation and backup of recovery seeds, setting a strong PIN, and using passphrase effectively to segregate coins and protecting Trezors from physical attacks.
Along with the newly-introduced Learn & Discover reference manual, Trezor Suite is focused on making sure every user gets the most out of their hardware wallets while avoiding the costly mistakes many have made in the past.

More on usability: Trezor Suite: the easy way to use Bitcoin

Focus on privacy

Trezor Suite is the first hardware wallet application that offers advanced privacy features in a form that is easy for anyone to use. Privacy is often a secondary focus for those building on Bitcoin, as the priority is to ensure there is robust infrastructure in place for Bitcoin as sound money. To make it easier to protect one's identity, Trezor Suite packages privacy tools in a way that even non-technical users can take advantage of them. By downloading Trezor Suite, sophisticated features like the Tor switch, Locktime, Discreet mode, and more, can be turned on in a single click. With many other privacy features in development, Trezor Suite will help every cryptocurrency user offset the risks of losing control over their private data.

More on privacy: Trezor Suite: Privacy made easy

Feature Highlights
  • Buy, Sell, and Exchange crypto with Invity.io - Connect to noncustodial exchange providers that offer the best rates, the most local payment methods, and the most effective support all in a single location. Invity's straightforward comparison tool allows users to buy, sell, exchange, and learn about digital currencies with ease so they never feel lost in the quickly changing world of crypto
  • Anonymous mode via Tor - At the flick of a switch, benefit from an anonymized global network that will obscure your connection by relaying it through servers distributed around the world
  • Dark mode - requested by community and delivered from Trezor with love
  • Onboarding - making it quicker and easier to get started securely using your wallet
  • Discrete mode - obscures sensitive data on-screen, so no one can peek over your shoulder
  • RBF - replace by fee for Bitcoin transactions allows users to increase the fee of transactions even if it was already broadcast

Coming soon
  • CoinJoin
  • Bitcoin full node
  • Mobile App
  • Recurring buy crypto savings account

See our plans for Trezor Suite in the Road Map. Check-in to Trezor Suite here.


Invity & Swan Bitcoin break down barriers to Bitcoin with automated savings in Trezor

Invity

2 min read

From the Genesis Stage of the Bitcoin 2022 conference, Invity.io, provider of the in-wallet trading platform for Trezor hardware wallets, and Swan Bitcoin, a prominent Bitcoin onramp, announced a new partnership to bring recurring, direct-to-custody Bitcoin purchases to Trezor wallets. Automated purchasing within a cold wallet is the most accessible way for non-technical users to start saving value with Bitcoin while maintaining personal control over their coins from the very beginning.

“The key to Bitcoin's future is to welcome people who are currently intimidated by cryptocurrencies. But we've found that new users continually worry over two things: finding the perfect time to enter the market and keeping their Bitcoin safe. This integration solves both”

Pavol "Stick" Rusnák, co-founder of Trezor Company.

“Bitcoin must be for everyone, especially in this age of runaway inflation. But not everyone is willing or able to contribute a lump sum to a new investment. By offering new users a straightforward way to buy Bitcoin in the amount they want and on their schedule, anyone can benefit from dollar-cost averaging while keeping their investment as secure as possible.”

Stephan Livera, Managing Director of Swan Bitcoin

Recurring Bitcoin purchases are facilitated by Invity, which integrated Swan Bitcoin's API into the free Trezor Suite app, the coin management platform for Trezor hardware wallets. In the Trezor Suite Trade section, a "Save into Bitcoin" button opens a specially designed minimalist interface in a click. Users then fine-tune the amount of Bitcoin to purchase and how often in a way that suits their personal budget. A linked bank account converts US dollars to Bitcoin automatically, and the purchased coins are sent directly to the user's non-custodial Trezor hardware wallet. This eliminates both exposure to vulnerable custodial solutions and manual, fee-incurring steps to move purchased coins to self-custody.

“Investing is a mental process for the long term and the only way to protect and build wealth over the long term. A completely self-managed asset like Bitcoin held on a hardware wallet is vital to creating an investment portfolio for the twenty-first century, and the meeting of our three companies makes this a reality for anyone”

Štěpán Uherík, CEO of Invity and CFO of Trezor.

Automated Bitcoin purchases powered by Swan Bitcoin and Invity will be enabled in the May 2022 update of the Trezor Suite. Swan is only available to people over eighteen years of age with a valid government ID and valid US bank account; this service is not available to residents of New York state. Invity is in talks to bring automated purchases to European users in the coming months.

About Swan Bitcoin

Swan Bitcoin is dedicated to helping the next billion people understand Bitcoin and what it represents for our future. Swan produces high quality Bitcoin education and takes pride in excellent, accessible customer service. Swan.com is the best way to accumulate Bitcoin with recurring and instant buys. The Private Client Services division helps high net worth individuals and entities build generational wealth around the world. Swan's Advisor Services platform is the easiest and most secure way for financial advisors to provide their clients with direct exposure to actual Bitcoin. For more information, visit Swan.com.

Tropic Square received investment of 4 mil. eur

Tropic Square

2 min read

Czech startup Tropic Square, which is part of SatoshiLabs Group, are planning to finalize development and start testing the first fully transparent and auditable security chip in the world. To introduce this idea to market, the company received investment of 4 million euros from swiss-based investment company Auzera. The chip, code named TASSIC (Transparent Authenticated Secure Storage Integrated Circuit), is expected to be introduced by the end of 2022, and it is already clear that it will be used in one of the most popular crypto hardware wallets Trezor, also made by SatoshiLabs.

“The initial motivation for the whole project was the need for a microprocessor solution for Trezor. However, thanks to the closed source settings of the chip manufacturers, we couldn't find an ideal solution. Although the community has asked for a so-called secure element, a chip that is inherently designed to prevent unauthorized access and protect cryptographic or confidential data, it would not be the right, most secure solution, due to non-transparency. So we took on the development of a transparent secure chip ourselves and believe that the next model of the Trezor will have an open source chip from Tropic Square. At the same time, we believe that this revolutionary chip can succeed outside the realm of cryptocurrencies. With this particular chip, we are heading for a market which was worth over 3 billion dollars in 2018”

Marek Palatinus, CEO of SatoshiLabs

Open source as a path to innovation

Open source is a way for Tropic Square to ensure the security of its chips. Like many other technology companies, this follows a trend that brings faster innovation through the community and reduces reliance on third-party know-how. The startup works on the assumption that the traditional closed-source approach hides drawbacks by closing itself off from the world, where small, closed teams work on their development and the resulting implementation cannot be verified by the chip user. Manufacturers of specialist security chips force their clients to sign NDA contracts. If its user discovers a problem, it is not possible to simply publish the finding, and thus warn about the possibility of a security risk.

The long list of known security issues clearly shows that chip design is another area of technology that needs to be opened for innovation. The goal of Tropic Square is to bring secure chips to market as a solution that is focused on the user and the end product.

”We believe that transparency, collaboration and, to a large extent, the community can significantly shift the technology world. The global reach and feedback from users themselves unlocks vast potential for innovation and to achieve what was previously unthinkable. Thanks to this investment, we can now focus fully on the development and technological solution itself, without having to worry about finances. Alongside that, our team is growing and we are always looking for talented and experienced people, not only for technical positions. In cooperation with DEPO Ventures, we are also open to angel investors who would leverage their know-how to accelerate the fulfillment of our goals in the business area as well,” adds Evžen Englberth, co-founder and CEO of Tropic Square.

As for the TASSIC chip itself, experts from all over the world can participate in its development and testing. There is already a forum open to the professional public, where discussions related to the chip's own development take place. At the same time, Tropic Square is still looking for talent in the areas of chip design, open source silicon, and security, to help with development.

Physical resilience and encryption are critical to security

The development of a common chip, where a single function is addressed, is already a complex undertaking. With the TASSIC chip, great emphasis is also placed on the method of its design and subsequent implementation, so the chip meets the high demands for physical security and resistance to attacks. Physical resilience and encryption are key features for a robust chip solution that securely generates and stores cryptographic keys and sensitive data. Moving these processes from software to specialized chips increases the security of the electronic device as a whole.

The company first announced its intention to create the chip in May last year. The nine- member team is led by co-founders Evžen Englberth (CEO) and Jan Pleskač (CTO).

Evžen Englberth and Jan Pleskač

TASSIC chip

In addition to new products, TASSIC is also a suitable solution for improving the security of existing products. It is designed to connect to common microprocessors or FPGA circuits using standard serial protocols or a MicroSD card. Using the TASSIC chip as a security extension to a non-secure controller and firmware creates a foundation for building secure systems.

Tropic Square is working on a solution that will bring security algorithms to market in an auditable implementation, i.e. a solution that will be controllable and, thanks to the open source system, will be accessible to the professional community. With the TASSIC chip, it will be possible to verify that it has been manufactured exactly according to design, and thus that there has been no modification or addition of an implant in the supply chain (generally referred to as supply chain attack). Thanks to the focus on solving the most basic needs of digital security, chip will find applications especially where the emphasis is on real security, unique device identity, cryptographically strong communication and authentication. This applies, for example, to the fields of IoT, Industry 4.0 and in special applications requiring transparency and real knowledge of chip implementation. There is also market potential in the area of common consumer electronics, where draft legislation imposes new requirements for secure storage of data in electronic devices.

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More about Tropic Square

Tropic Square s.r.o. is a private company founded in 2020 in response to the lack of secure element chips based on open architecture. Its goal is to bring customers a fully auditable chip that will meet high security requirements and at the same time be verifiable by anyone thanks to its transparency and open source philosophy. The first generation of the secure chip is currently being developed under the working name TASSIC. More information at tropicsquare.com.