Long-term cryptocurrency investors can now leverage the building blocks of life to achieve the ultimate form of cold storage.
Switzerland-based startup Carverr has recently launched a platform to convert cryptocurrency private keys and passwords into DNA, providing a completely secure, non-degradable system for long-term digital asset storage.
— Carverr (@CarverrLabs) July 4, 2018
Carverr works by first converting binary code that makes up any piece of data into a combination of four nucleotides, the building blocks of DNA. This is done by simply setting a conversion system (eg., A=00, T=01, G=10, C=11) then leveraging basic molecular biology techniques to create synthetic DNA strands with the exact code that represents the binary output of the desired dataset. Once an investor’s private key or other sensitive data is converted into DNA, Carverr will actually send you the vial for personal safekeeping.
Thus, an investor wanting redundancy in private key storage can have that key converted into DNA, which can be read at any time in the future using polymerase chain reactions (PCRs) combined with mainstream DNA sequencing techniques. While this may seem like an expensive approach, the technologies have advanced so much in recent years that it costs have become relatively nominal.
Carverr isn’t the first team to explore DNA as a means to augment, and perhaps even replace, current systems of data storage.
One notable advancement comes out of the lab of famous Harvard researcher, George Church, who made headlines last year his group showed that the gene-editing system CRISPR can be used to insert a short animated image, or GIF, into the genomes of living Escherichia coli bacteria.
The researchers converted the individual pixels of each image into nucleotides, similar to Carverr’s approach, and achieved 90% accuracy by reading the pixel nucleotide code to recreate the GIF.
While the field is still very much in its infancy, the future of data storage could very well be built with biotechnology.
Disclaimer: This article’s author has cryptocurrency holdings that can be tracked here. This article is for informational purposes only and should not be taken as investment advice. Always conduct your own due diligence before making investments.