Before we define Status Multi-Account, we should probably cover what the terms actually mean.
You can compare accounts in Status to bank accounts. Each account is based on its own key pair. Like a bank account, an account has an address, balance, and the ability to transact. Each account also contains its own public history of transactions. With Status V1, for ultimate privacy you use multiple accounts. You can view your accounts in the Wallet tab.
With our new account structure, we decouple your chat key (used for communicating) from your Ethereum address (used for transacting). Now, your Ethereum address is only shared with other users if you do so explicitly, either sending it to them or offering them your QR code.
You can create more Ethereum addresses and manage them all from the same Status wallet; only your 'default' address is shared with contacts, so you have additional control over your exposure
Multi-account refers to the BIP44 capability of deriving multiple addresses from the same seed phrase. Your single unique seed phrase can now generate an unlimited set of wallet addresses (accounts), and chat IDs.
What are Keys?
Keys are a form of identity and the backbone of Status and Ethereum. They always come in pairs, a public key and a private key.
Previously, Status managed only one keypair. That keypair was used to identify you in the Messenger, the Wallet, and when Browsing DApps – meaning your Ethereum Wallet key is also connected to your Chat key. Naturally, this isn't ideal as it is the equivalent of, for example, allowing anyone in your Telegram groups to see the balance of your bank account.
When I use the term Multi-Account, I am referring to Status' new structuring that allows users to manage multiple Ethereum Wallets / Keypairs in one place.
Technically: When you start using Status, you generate two keypairs, one of which is your main user account; for transacting value, or signing transactions from dApps. It is created on the standard BIP-44 path m/44’/60’/0’/0/0. The other of which is your chat keypair on the path m/43’/60’/1581’/0’/0 which is in accordance with EIP-1581. You can find the value of your chat address in Profile > Share Icon.
After that, n-number of keypairs can be generated based on this first pair, each one being a new account that you can manage from Status. These accounts are created on m/44’/60’/0’/0/1 and then m/44’/60’/0’/0/2, and so on.
Privacy & Security
As we move into the Status V1 era, there is no better time to launch Multi-Account functionality. One of the biggest driving factors here is the privacy issue of chat keys and wallet keys being the same, making it fairly easy for anyone to check one pseudo-anonymous user of Status' full transaction history. Mitigating this privacy issue is key to aligning with Status values of security and privacy.
Privacy and flexibility are the key outcomes of allowing you to create multiple accounts, managed under one main wallet. You can now separate different crypto asset activities, using different addresses under your main Status account. As I mentioned above, this mitigates the issue of everyone in your chat history being able to see all of your crypto transactions.
What does this mean for Status' features?
Messenger: We gave the messaging part a dedicated keypair, and the wallet default account a separate dedicated keypair.
Wallet: Atop of the default wallet account, we are allowing users to create separate new accounts to manage their crypto assets.
Browser: The browser part of status can choose which wallet account it uses to interact with the dapp.
So, as of v1 – what is my wallet address?
Your wallet address has 42 characters and starts with 0x. It’s an on-chain identity for your Ethereum account. If you have multiple accounts, you have multiple addresses. You can find your wallet address by going to Wallet > Account card > Receive or by tapping on the Share icon on the Account card. Note that although it looks similar, your wallet address is not the same as your chat key. You can find your chat key in Profile > Share icon.
How many accounts can I create in Status?
You can create as many accounts as you want. Go to Wallet > Add account > Generate keys. Accounts added this way can be recovered with your seed phrase, along with your master key pair, if you lose access to your account. You can also create more master key pairs by going to the start screen Your keys > Generate keys or Access existing keys if you want to import keys from another wallet or create a completely new keychain of identities.
Feel free to email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or better yet, join our chat.
Want to learn more about the tech used? Looking for a specific answer? Ask your question in our open forum discuss.status.im.
Not finding what you need? Get support in the #support channel in Discord.
Otherwise, if you would like to reach out to me personally, you can do so here!