At the Worldwide Developers Conference on June 5, 2019, Apple, an American multinational technology company announced CryptoKit, a Swift API that can be used to carry out cryptographic operations securely and efficiently on the iOS 13.
Apple Unveils a New Framework
Apple has unveiled its much-rumored CryptoKit, a new framework which is aimed at providing efficient and secure cryptography operations. These are common operations that are performed by developers and they include hashing, key generation, and exchange, as well as encryption.
In line with that, Apple has also confirmed that its CryptoKit will perform these cryptographic operations. They will include computing and comparing cryptographically secure digests, creating and evaluating digital signatures with the use of public-key cryptography, and generating symmetric keys which can be used in operations such as message authentication and encryption.
CryptoKit to be Implemented in iOS 13
CryptoKit will be implemented on the yet-to-be-launched iOS 13 and upon its launch, developers can automatically handle tasks that can improve the level of security of their apps instead of relying on low-level interfaces. It is also worthy to note that the new framework supersedes CommonCrypto, Apple’s previous framework which does not feature Swift.
On the contrary, the new framework only supports the secp256r1 (aka prime256) curve and offers no support to the secp256k1 curve which is used in Ethereum and several other blockchains. As a result, it could pose certain limitations to cryptocurrencies. Nonetheless, some crypto fans have not batted an eyelid to it, while some others have outrightly stated that the new feature is currently useless.
The latter is the opinion of Ouriel Ohayon, co-founder of ZenGo who said:
“For now [CryptoKit] is pretty much useless for cryptocurrencies because, one, it does not use the relevant elliptic curves for blockchains, and two, there is no access to the secure enclave to export and migrate private keys if you need to.”