Zama’s Master Plan to Facilitate End-to-End Encryption Across the Web with $73M Funding

March 11, 2024

Zama, an open-source cryptography company, raised $73 million in a Series A funding to further develop fully homomorphic encryption (FHE) programs. This round was led by Protocol Labs and Multicoin Capital with the goal of driving the widespread adoption of FHE in blockchain and AI. The financing will support Zama in advancing its research in FHE technology, assisting their production partners, and securing financial stability to weather any market fluctuations in the future.

In a blog post, Zama CEO Rand Hindi discussed the company’s current capabilities, highlighting that users have access to a diverse suite of open-source FHE solutions catering to a variety of needs. Zama’s FHE scheme, which is built on TFHE, enables developers and major businesses to create applications that offer seamless, end-to-end encryption to users without requiring any cryptography expertise. It is also capable of supporting even the most complex applications, significantly broadening the scope of FHE use.

In a four-step master plan, Hindi described Zama’s end vision for FHE:  

  • Make FHE user-friendly for developers of any kind
  • Ensure it is very quick and will support high transaction rates
  • Integrate it with cloud applications
  • Introduce a new protocol called “HTTPZ” to encrypt the entire internet with FHE

He further elaborated on X that there is no limit to FHE’s potential applications, including classified RWA tokenization, DeFi requirements on blockchains, DAO governance, and even gaming.

When Zama was founded in 2020, FHE was predominantly theoretical and lacked practical implementation due to massive limitations such as lack of speed, disproportionate costs, and inaccessibility to developers with no background in cryptography. What Zama did was to address these challenges between that time and now. Today, FHE is accessible to developers outside of the cryptography field, making Zama’s long-term goal of encrypting the entire internet end-to-end within reach and allowing every single user to experience privacy at maximum capacity.

This is consistent with Hindi’s statement in an interview in 2023: “If a developer decides to bring privacy to their product, every one of their users will get privacy without having to worry about it.”

Zama recently partnered with Shiba Inu to bring FHE solutions to the Shib ecosystem and transform blockchain security. A leading token by market cap, Shiba Inu is leveraging Zama’s fhEVM to establish a complete network state for its community, supporting various aspects of its decentralized financial system and metaverse.

The fhEVM is designed to address the issue of public visibility of transactions and data on blockchains, allowing developers to create confidential on-chain applications that protect sensitive information such as personal or financial data. By integrating fhEVM with any chain that supports the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM), developers can ensure end-to-end encryption of data, from transaction submission to smart contract processing.

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