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The Censo Seed Phrase Manager: Delivering on the Promises of SLIP39


SLIP39 has set a benchmark in cryptocurrency security by introducing the concept of sharding mnemonic phrases for seed storage. However, Censo's Seed Phrase Manager elevates this concept by addressing its fundamental shortcomings, particularly around the persistence and security of shards. Let's delve into how Censo perfects the promises SLIP39 sought to deliver.

Understanding Censo's Key Management: Master and Intermediate Keys

  1. The Master Key: In Censo’s framework, a Master Public/Private Key Pair is generated. This Master Key is pivotal for encrypting the user's seed phrase. It ensures that the seed phrase remains secure and inaccessible without proper authentication.
  2. The Intermediate Key: The Master Private Key is further encrypted using an Intermediate Key, enhancing the security layer. After encryption, the Master Key's plaintext is securely deleted. This process ensures that the only existing copy of the Master Private Key is encrypted and hence, safe.
  3. Sharding the Intermediate Key: Unlike SLIP39, which directly shards the mnemonic phrase, Censo shards the Intermediate Key using Shamir's Secret Sharing. This means that even if shard holders come together, they cannot access the seed phrase without the encrypted Master Private Key, which is only accessible to the seed owner.

Censo’s Advancements Over SLIP39

  1. Solving the Persistence Problem: One of the key challenges with SLIP39 is the persistent nature of mnemonic shards. Censo resolves this by ensuring shard holders only possess parts of the Intermediate Key, not the seed phrase itself. This approach significantly reduces the risk of unauthorized seed phrase reconstruction.
  2. Enhanced User Control and Security: Censo allows seed owners to update or change Trusted Approvers without the need to secure the deletion of existing shards. This flexibility, combined with robust encryption, gives users unparalleled control and security over their digital assets.
  3. User-Friendly and Accessible: While maintaining high-security standards, Censo also focuses on user-friendliness. The system is designed for ease of use, allowing users to manage their seed phrases without needing extensive technical knowledge.


Censo's Seed Phrase Manager not only aligns with the strengths of the SLIP39 standard but also advances beyond its limitations. By tackling the challenges of shard persistence and offering enhanced user control, Censo provides a superior, secure, and user-friendly solution for cryptocurrency seed phrase management. As we continue to witness advancements in digital asset security, Censo remains at the forefront, offering innovative solutions that cater to the evolving needs of cryptocurrency users.


For more information please visit Censo Security Design.

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