My guest today is Nick Neuman, CEO and co-founder of Casa. Casa helps bitcoin investors and owners keep their digital assets safe from loss or theft by providing managed self-custody services. In our discussion, we cover the history of asset custody from ancient temples to decentralized ledgers, look at the mechanics of how private keys work, and explore why people are better off holding the keys themselves. We then dive into the future of digital wallets as gateways into our virtual lives, what’s interesting about identity authentication more broadly, and whether these innovations may lead to unintended consequences. Please enjoy this great conversation with Nick Neuman.
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[00:03:23] - [First question] - The history of asset custody
[00:07:56] - What private keys are and their role in financial security
[00:12:21] - Overview of storing a token in a wallet and accessing with a private key
[00:15:28] - Thoughts on private keys through the lenses of convenience and safety
[00:18:49] - Solving both self-custody of assets and peace of mind
[00:21:39] - How the user experience will feel once self-custody is properly developed
[00:24:11] - Why asset custody is so interesting and what a perfect scenario unlocks
[00:27:05] - Is the DeFi ecosystem an early manifestation of a self-custody financial system
[00:28:57] - Ways Casa is planning to become a convenient and diverse platform for users
[00:32:16] - The role wallets will play in the future of a digital world
[00:34:56] - Forms of authentication that are most appealing in creating a seamless user experience
[00:37:39] - Overview of what hardware wallets are and how they work
[00:40:17] - Different security options that Casa offers from the simplest to the most secure
[00:44:51] - How many crypto holders there are and how many use self-custody
[00:47:31] - The craziest security set up around Bitcoin he’s ever heard of
[00:48:49] - What the most ideal outcome for Casa looks like in the coming decade
[00:51:26] - Thoughts on the competitive landscape and potential growth challenges
[00:53:07] - Important aspects of the crypto ecosystem other than security
[00:55:49] - How empowered people feel when they successfully adopt self-custody
[00:57:13] - Whether or not there are ways that the current centralized system is more secure
[00:59:58] - Thoughts on offering a way for users to display they are protected by Casa
[01:01:31] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for him