Web3 Phone Numbers: How 3NUM is Securing Communicationby@3num
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Web3 Phone Numbers: How 3NUM is Securing Communication

by 3NUMJuly 7th, 2023
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3NUM invented the world’s first Web3 Mobile Number which is created by minting a phone number into an on-chain identifier. This transformation gives an ordinary number web3 properties that are used for secure messaging while unlocking the ultimate web3 user experience. With Web3 native phone numbers created by 3NUM, users can send crypto to one another.
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The most prolific digital identifiers used today are:

  1. Phone Numbers ~ 5.5B Users
  2. Email ~ 4B Users
  3. Social (Facebook & Google) ~ 3B Users

Phone numbers are ubiquitous, yet they lack the inherent properties for secure, private, and engaging communications. Despite this fact, the world has adopted using phone numbers (because of their universality) in concerning ways ranging from:

  • SMS 2FA (vulnerable to SIM Swaps)

  • Messaging using unencrypted protocols with no ability to control inbound spam

  • Incapable of verifying who is on the other side of a conversation in a user-friendly and privacy-preserving way

    just to name a few…

The question then becomes, how do we upgrade the world’s largest social graph into trusted, end-end encryption to solve the problems facing over 5 billion users?

The answer is by transforming phone numbers into secure, blockchain-based identifiers.

What is a Web3 Mobile Number?

3NUM invented the world’s first Web3 Mobile Number, called a 3NUM Shield, which is created by minting a phone number into an on-chain identifier. This transformation gives an ordinary number web3 properties that are used for secure messaging and unlocking the ultimate web3 user experiences - all from the convenience of a phone number! This transformation process preserves backward compatibility to the legacy telco world used by over 5 billion mobile subscribers, creating a seamless upgrade path that doesn’t require displacing or alienating the long tail of users in the process.

How Web3 Mobile Numbers Make Daily Life Better And Secure

Transforming phone numbers into Web3 identifiers brings both the security and user engagement benefits of Web3 to the world's largest social graph.

  1. Replacing SMS 2FA with the security of Sign-in With Ethereum

There is nothing worse than going to a website, putting in a phone number, and getting sent some code required to log in. Not only is this process cumbersome, but it’s also dangerous. SMS-based 2FA is commonplace but incredibly insecure and can be easily undermined by a hack known as a SIM Swap.

Transforming a traditional phone number into a Web3 Mobile Number makes them cryptographically secure, meaning they can be used to bypass traditional SMS 2FA for SIWE!

  1. End-End Encrypted Communications

Traditional phone numbers are not cryptographically secure, and SMS isn’t end-end encrypted. 3NUM’s Web3 Mobile Numbers, on the contrary, are both cryptographically secure and prioritize end-end encryption protocols, with a fallback to legacy SMS when necessary to send messages to a non-Web3 phone number!

  1. Send Crypto To Your Phone Number

Imagine, instead of using traditional payment services, that you can simply send crypto to a friend using their mobile number. Web3 Native Mobile Numbers are able to support this use case!

  1. Say Goodbye To SMS Spam

Everyone hates annoying and dangerous spam messages. By migrating telephony messages to secure VOIP with 3NUM, users have complete control over who and how they receive messages. This creates the foundation to eliminate SMS spam for good!

  1. Ending SIM Swaps

A SIM Swap is a serious form of mobile fraud where a hacker tricks or coerces a mobile carrier employee into transferring a victim’s phone number to a SIM card controlled by the hacker. Once this happens, all incoming phone calls and SMS messages are then routed to the hacker's phone, including 2FA codes, which they can use to access sensitive online apps, including email, social media, and, more damaging, crypto and banking accounts. 3NUM Web3 Mobile Numbers are fully controlled by a user’s wallet. Once a mobile number has transformed into being Web3 native, the underlying number is incapable of returning to being a traditional phone number, which means it will forever be controlled by a user's wallet.

  1. Who Am I Really Talking To

There is nothing more unnerving than getting a text or phone call from an unknown number. It is nearly impossible to know for certain who is on the other side of a conversation - and this reality has been exploited by hackers through schemes like number spoofing and smishing. Web3 Mobile Numbers are blockchain-based identifiers, meaning they are completely verifiable and are also able to leverage emerging decentralized identity efforts. 3NUM is enabling aspects of these initiatives, ranging from leveraging on-chain generative messaging PFPs, inextricably linked to a number, to privacy-preserving verifiable credentials. For example, a 3NUM user can have a verifiable credential with their Web3 Mobile Number that is issued by a trusted 3rd party (like a University or licensing body in a state). This claim can validate that a user’s name is Alice S, for example, which can be passed along to a recipient when sending a new message. The Verifiable Credential is used to prove to a recipient that the sender’s name is, in fact, Alice S, without needing to divulge any additional information.

Users deserve to have control over their communications without needing to think about security or cutting off their existing friends and family in lieu of using a more secure solution. By transforming phone numbers into Web3 Native Mobile Numbers, solving these problems and upgrading the world to encrypted communications can be done pragmatically and effortlessly!

Join the revolution today!

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