Armory Technologies, Inc. (ATI), maker of the world's most secure Bitcoin wallet platform, has raised the bar yet again for Bitcoin security by releasing the world's first decentralized multi-signature "Lockbox" interface for Bitcoin. Armory version 0.92 features an intuitive user interface for multi-signature transactions for high-security storage as well as simultaneous funding for Bitcoin contracts and escrow (aka "simulfunding").
Armory multi-signature Lockboxes are unique because they give users 100% control over the generation and storage of all cryptographic signing keys, and no third-party services are required to use any of these features. Each Armory signing device can generate its wallet independently of the others, whether or not the devices are fully offline. This is critical for businesses that need to remove single points of failure from their security profile and enforce proper segregation of duties for their employees.
Armory Lockboxes are profoundly flexible, allowing any multi-signature combination from 1-of-2 up to 7-of-7. There are many possible ways to use lockboxes. A basic 2-of-2 scheme may be appropriate for a husband and wife who want their savings to require both of their signatures. A complex 5-of-7 scheme may be appropriate for a large financial institution or hedge fund desiring to widely distribute signing authority among trusted executives, trustees, or even insurance providers.
Bitcoin multi-signature technology is extremely powerful but rarely implemented to its full potential. For example, most other multi-signature services only provide a single type of multi-signature (usually 2-of-3) and require third-party services and/or signers. In these systems, multiple private keys are generated on the same system or pass through the same channel which creates a single point of failure. Additionally, many alternatives are not open-source so their security is not easily audited by experts.
On the other hand, Armory Bitcoin Wallet is completely open-source and has been featured on bitcoin.org for more than two years as the security-focused wallet option. Unlike most other multi-sig services, ATI does not know anything about the way you use Lockboxes. Even if ATI disappears, your Lockboxes will continue to work exactly as before.