5 Tough Questions with Saifu’s Zach Murray


Q: Regarding your security — I’m not familiar with Evgeny Vigovsky. I don’t know who he is, or whether he worked for Kaspersky Labs. Why should I believe that he’s a security master?

ZM: Well, aside from his LinkedIn, you can judge for yourself. Here’s an ask-me-anything style interview with Evgeny on reddit’s ethtrader community, here’s an article from Enterprise Security written by Vigovsky, and here’s a press release from Kaspersky Lab which quotes Vigovsky on a DDoS attack.

Q: Crypto functionality is a priority when building a service like yours. Many companies start with just crypto and no fiat, perhaps they are more focused than you?

ZM: Or less original. Let’s be honest, there are hundreds, if not thousands, of crypto services out there, and still very few people use them. Our mission is to bring cryptocurrencies into the mainstream, and that means integrating them with the traditional financial world. If you can’t do fiat and crypto together, your service is just another wallet. We offer a traditional banking experience and the simplicity that goes with it, so that people outside of the crypto community can actually use it and not have to worry about storing wallets or keys themselves. And we have superior cryptosecurity. Look into Thales, they are the leader for banking cyber security. We adapted their hardware solutions for crypto, and it wasn’t easy.

Q: So you aim to be a bridge between the traditional and crypto economies — there are lots of similar projects in the market, you’re not unique.

ZM: — Which projects are you talking about? Lots of projects make big promises and don’t deliver on them. The only competitive project in our fields is Revolut, but Revolut doesn’t offer crypto transactions (they actually can’t with their current security set up) and their crypto security is inferior. We operate under the assumption that we’ll eventually get hacked, and our customers crypto is safe even if we are.

Q: You boast of being licensed, but I know of other licensed services like yours. A license is not a unique advantage, others projects have them.

ZM: — Which ones? Do they have their own licenses, or are they operating through a bank that’s a partner? That poses a huge risk to any business, because the bank cooperating with them can always tell them they aren’t interested anymore and poof! — the business is gone. Again, Revolut is the only of our competitors with its own license, and they can’t offer the crypto services or security we can.

Q: A key point of discussion: why regulate what was invented to be unregulated? Why go against the main principle of cryptocurrency?

ZM: I can understand why you feel this way. In fact, decentralization was the core tenet of cryptocurrencies. And we aren’t taking that away. There’s no central bank that can print more crypto just because we can store it safely in a centralized way. There’s no government that can spend recklessly and cause a huge debt build-up that destroys the value of the currency. We offer the benefits of decentralized cryptocurrencies for everyone, not just the crypto savvy few. The nature of money is changing with cryptocurrencies, but that doesn’t mean it’s safe to keep it stored on a flash drive under your bed. And it doesn’t mean cryptocurrencies should be any more difficult to use than traditional currencies. Will there be people who want to store their crypto on their own and do their own IT management and security? Of course, and they’ll always have that option. There are also lots of people who don’t want to deal with the hassle. Those are our customers.