rhino.fi is totally committed to self-custody. Crypto should be fair, free and transparent, and we believe this is only possible if you maintain control of your funds at all times. Here's how we put this approach into practice.

With rhino.fi, you have complete control over your funds at all times. This means your funds are secure and cannot be moved or sold without your permission. Even if our website were to cease operations, you can always recover your funds.

As a self-custodial platform, Rhino.fi provides a level of security and transparency that surpasses centralized cryptocurrency exchanges

Core design

In partnership with StarkWare, our Layer 2 scalability partner, rhino.fi has been developed to incorporate cutting-edge cryptographic technologies like zero-knowledge proofs. The platform has undergone extensive review by leading security audit firms, ensuring robustness and reliability.

Wallet Connection

Upon joining rhino.fi, users have the option to select and connect their existing wallet. This wallet allows user to retain full control over their funds and authorise activities such as trading, investing, and bridging.

After connecting their wallet to rhino.fi, users are asked to complete several steps and make an initial deposit.

Unlike a centralised exchange, users’ funds are transferred to rhino.fi’s smart wallets. These serve as the foundation for an enhanced and seamless user experience, ensuring consistency across various chains and Layer 2 solutions supported by rhino.fi.

How smart wallets work

You can consider smart wallets as an “upgrade” to users’ existing wallets, such as Metamask. While users maintain control over their funds using their familiar wallet, smart wallets introduce several additional capabilities, including:

  1. Elimination of token approvals: Users no longer need to approve tokens for each transaction, streamlining the process.

  2. Reduced fees for transfers and trades: Smart wallets enable lower fees for various transactions, contributing to cost savings.

  3. Instant bridge access: Users gain immediate access to bridge functionality, facilitating seamless asset transfers between different networks.

  4. Convenient one-click access to yield opportunities: Smart wallets simplify access to yield-generating opportunities, making it easier for users to participate in earning activities.

  5. Flexible fee payment options: Instead of being limited to the native fee of a particular chain, users can choose to pay fees in any currency, offering greater flexibility.

Overall, smart wallets empower users with enhanced control, reduced fees, and improved accessibility to a range of features within the rhino.fi ecosystem.

EVM Chains:

rhino.fi’s smart wallets on EVM chains offer a straightforward set of functionalities, enabling users to:

  1. Keep track of their balances.

  2. Swap funds using DEX aggregators.

  3. Send funds to other addresses.

  4. Pursue passive income opportunities.

  5. Withdraw funds in emergencies.

StarkEx

 

Alongside EVM smart wallets, rhino.fi operates a smart wallet built on StarkEx.

Our StarkEx instance is actually a full rollup, built on Layer 2 (in other words, off the main Ethereum blockchain). This is great for user experience, and allows us to provide a huge variety of options to our users.

However, our StarkEx smart wallet provides a number of the same functionalities as the EVM wallets. It enables users to 

    1. Monitor balances.

    2. Trade on Ethereum with far greater gas-efficiency than is possible on Layer 1.

    3. Send assets to other addresses.

    4. Pursue passive-income opportunities.

    5. Withdraw funds in emergencies.

A key distinction of the StarkEx wallet is its use of a separate public-private key pairing from Ethereum and the EVM. This requires the generation and secure storage of an additional key known as the Trading Key.

Transactions executed within the StarkEx wallet are signed using the Trading Key, rather than the user’s regular wallet keys like Metamask. The Trading Key is encrypted, backed up, and can be recovered in case of loss by signing with the user’s Ethereum wallet key. It is crucial to store the Trading Key securely to ensure the integrity and accessibility of the StarkEx wallet.

Meta Transactions and Gas Abstraction

An important feature facilitated by rhino.fi’s smart wallets is the abstraction of transaction broadcasting for users. This means users only need to sign transactions “off-chain,” incurring no cost, and then transmit the signature to rhino.fi. We promptly and securely broadcast the transaction on behalf of the user and cover the blockchain fee.

This approach offers several advantages:

  1. Swift and Convenient Broadcasting. Users enjoy quick and hassle-free transaction broadcasting without the need to adjust or increase gas prices.

  2. Gas Payment Flexibility. Users are relieved from holding native tokens like ETH, BNB, or MATIC to cover gas costs.

  3. Fee-Free Failed Transactions. In the event of a transaction failure, such as due to fluctuating prices, users are not charged any fees.

To delve deeper into the concept of meta transactions, you can find additional information here.

Security & Upgrades

Robust security is a fundamental aspect of rhino.fi’s self-custodial model. To achieve this, all our contracts undergo rigorous audits and are complemented by bug bounty programmes.

Key to the security of our platform is the way we upgrade our smart wallets, a process which aims to strike a balance between self-custody and upgradability.

We are committed to continuously enhancing and expanding the capabilities of rhino.fi while upholding the safety and self-custody of users’ funds. To achieve this, we employ Timelock contracts, which provide a mechanism for executing upgrades in a controlled manner.

Here is an overview of how the upgrade process works:

  1. Proposal: When an upgrade is planned, it is proposed to the Timelock contract.

  2. Countdown Period: The proposal initiates a countdown period of 7-14 days, depending on the chain. During this period, community members have the opportunity to review the upgrade, ensuring its safety and adherence to audits. They verify that the upgrade code matches the expected code.

  3. Community Monitoring: If any community member identifies potential security risks in the code, they can raise the alarm. This allows users to withdraw their funds before the upgrade is completed, ensuring their safety.

  4. Upgrade Execution: Once the countdown period concludes, the smart wallets undergo the upgrade process, incorporating new functionality.


Emergency Withdrawals

As the final step in our strategy to ensure self-custody throughout our platform, we have implemented an emergency withdrawal process. While regular withdrawals are handled as meta transactions for a smoother user experience, there is a theoretical possibility of users being unable to withdraw funds if the rhino.fi website is offline or unavailable.

Emergency withdrawals address this concern by granting users the ability to recover their funds safely and swiftly, even if the website ceases to exist. This mechanism allows users to directly access the underlying smart contracts and force a withdrawal of their funds at any time.

For in-depth discussions about our self-custody approach or any other aspect of rhino.fi’s technology, feel free to contact us through Twitter or Discord.

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