Near Introduces multichain transactions from a single account


The Near Foundation — the nonprofit organization backing the layer-1 Near Protocol — has revealed that the protocol now enables chain signatures. This advancement allows users to access multiple chains using their Near account.

According to a press release, Eigenlayer, a restaking project developed on Ethereum, is now a launch partner with Near, contributing to the security of the chain signatures network.

The Chain Signatures feature is powered by a decentralized multi-party computation (MPC) network and secured by Near network validators.

Source: NearProtocol

Chain signatures are cryptographic signatures that allow users to sign transactions on one blockchain using a private key associated with an account on another blockchain.

This feature enables cross-chain interoperability and allows users to access and interact with multiple blockchains using a single wallet or account.

The new Chain Signatures feature enables any Near account to control any number of addresses on all blockchains, enabling new use cases around decentralized finance.

In the future, it will receive additional security from EigenLayer as well, according to the foundation. Near Foundation said:

“Decentralized finance (DeFi) on non-smart contract chains is now possible for the first time on many networks, including Bitcoin. Developers can easily build DeFi products that utilize assets from other chains without bridging these assets.”

According to Near, Chain Signatures presently works with Ethereum, Cosmos, Dogecoin, Bitcoin, and XRP Ledger, with upcoming support planned for Solana, TON Network, Polkadot, and additional networks.

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The feature incorporates a “Multichain Gas Relayer,” eliminating the necessity for the native gas token of another chain for transactions. Users can utilize NEAR or NEP-141 tokens to cover gas across any chain.

This offering represents Near’s ongoing effort in its “chain abstraction” initiative, seeking to streamline the user experience in crypto by addressing complexities inherent in a multichain ecosystem.

Chain Signatures is currently operational on Near’s testnet, with plans for its mainnet rollout anticipated by early May, according to a Near spokesperson.

Near posted a 1,902% increase in the number of unique active wallets (UAW) engaged with its Web3 app, according to a Jan. 11 report from blockchain analytics platform DappRadar.

However, the foundation cut its workforce by 40%, despite its robust financials.

Near Foundation disclosed the departure of its CEO, Marieke Flament, on Sept. 21, 2023, without providing specific reasons. Flament, who served from 2021 to 2023, oversaw the organization’s treasury balance growth to 330 million NEAR, valued at $350 million upon her resignation.

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