crypto cold storage
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Ledger Vault in $150 million insurance cover deal with Lloyd’s of London underwriter

Leading hardware wallet vendor Ledger has secured insurance cover for its institutional crypto asset custody service to the tune of $150 million.

The crime insurance policy was secured with the help of top insurance broker Marsh and is underwritten by Lloyd’s of London Syndicate member Arch Insurance.

The news comes on the back of the launch of Bakkt’s custody service earlier this week. Bakkt was thought to be alone in securing substantial insurance coverage of $125 million for its Bakkt Warehouse offering.

Bakkt has not revealed the name of the entity that has underwritten its insurance policy.

Ledger’s institutional service, Ledger Vault, provides businesses with a multi signature system that includes individual hardware wallets for interacting with the Vault as part of a Hardware Security Module that segregates signing, governance and currency scripts for transactions, from the chain and managed services and the user interface integration.

Crowded cryptoasset custody sector

Custody services is a crowded space with long-time market leaders such as Zapo joined in more recent times by a variety of other players of all sizes, such as Coinbase Custody, BitGo and Fidelity Digital Assets.

Storing crypto safely is still an issue for private individuals and even more so for institutions, so this latest development should be seen as an important step forward for the onboarding of institutions into the crypto space.

The Ledger Vault insurance also provides the option for individual companies to take out their own insurance in addition to Ledger’s platform-wide cover.

Marsh has been working with Ledger for the past year to put the insurance policy in place.

Arch vice president of specie James Crome says the underwriter spent six months developing the customised offering for Ledger’s clients. “This $150 million policy underscores just how impressed we are with the security technology platform they’ve built,” says Crome.

Key for onboarding institutions into crypto space

Demetrios Skalkotos, global head of Ledger Vault, said in a press statement: “The combination of Ledger Vault’s secure hardware and software operating systems, along with our governance protocols, allowed Marsh and Arch to expand standard cold storage coverage to the Ledger Vault solution.

“The policy also covers the clients’ onboarding process, their personal security devices and the secure encrypted communication channel that is established when using the Vault platform.

“This unique policy is a true end-to-end solution that gives our customers the flexibility to both store and move funds without compromising on security and governance.”

Demetrios Skalkotos

French company Ledger is the start-up behind the popular Ledger Nano hardware wallet, which, along with Trezor, dominates the private investor market for hardware cryptoasset storage solutions.

The Ledger Vault policy insures, among other things, against third-party theft of the master seed and insider theft, and all the crypto assets currently stored with Ledger Vault are covered by the policy, with a mechanism to add more coins and tokens “as may be necessary”.

UK firm Arch Insurance is a subsidiary of Arch Capital based in Bermuda and is regulated by the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority and Prudential Regulation Authority.

Marsh is one of the largest global insurance brokers and its insurance and risk management business employs 35,000 people in 130 countries, with annual revenue of $17 billion.

Ledger chief executive Pascal Gauthier commenting on the news said: “We consider insurance a crucial part of a comprehensive plan as digital assets gain a foothold in institutional portfolios. As a new class of assets, securing digital currencies has become a complex challenge for both institutions and insurers. Through our efforts with Marsh and Arch to curate this comprehensive crime insurance policy, we are playing a pivotal role in the movement to secure and insure all critical digital assets.”