SEC Clarifies Crypto Terminology in Consensys Lawsuit

9 Jul 2024

SEC v. Consensys Software Inc. Court Filing, retrieved on June 28, 2024, is part of HackerNoon’s Legal PDF Series. You can jump to any part in this filing here. This part is 7 of 26.

B. Crypto Assets

33. As used herein, the terms “crypto asset” or “token” generally refers to an asset issued and/or transferred using blockchain or distributed ledger technology, including assets referred to colloquially as “cryptocurrencies,” “virtual currencies,” and digital “coins.”

34. A blockchain or distributed ledger is a database spread across a network of computers that records transactions in theoretically unchangeable, digitally recorded data packages, referred to as “blocks.” These systems typically rely on cryptographic techniques to secure the recording of transactions.

35. Crypto asset owners typically store the cryptographic key information that gives them control over their crypto assets on a piece of hardware or software called a “crypto asset wallet.” Crypto asset wallets, among other functions, provide a user-friendly way to store and manage the “public keys” and the “private keys” associated with an investor’s crypto assets. The public key is used to derive the user’s blockchain “address,” and it can be freely shared with others. The private key is roughly analogous to a password; its use confers the ability to transfer a crypto asset and transact using the user’s public blockchain address. Whoever controls the private key controls the crypto asset(s) associated with that key.

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