MetaMask Beefs Up Security and Improves Gas Prices

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In Brief
  • MetaMask improves gas usage and wallet security.

  • New desktop extension launched for Microsoft Edge.

  • Fake phishing sites paying Google for listings.

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Cryptocurrency wallet and browser extension MetaMask has been busy beefing up its security as hacks and exploits continue to plague the industry.



In its latest monthly report, MetaMask has detailed ongoing efforts to improve the platform for its users and increase security. There are a few tweaks for dApp developers to be aware of but they will not affect users.

The wallet provider has been developing ‘LavaMoat’ which is a set of tools for generating dApp bundles with enhanced security in the form of Secure EcmaScript (SES) containers. It added that every MetaMask extension release from version 8.0.6 upward deploys SES.



“This hardens our entire codebase and greatly reduces the number of ways that a malicious dependency can compromise a user’s wallet. In short, your wallet is more secure than ever!”

In addition to the Chrome, Firefox, and Brave desktop browser extensions, MetaMask has also now launched one for Windows Edge users.

MetaMask Tweaking Gas Costs

The report added that it has tweaked the way those transaction fees are calculated. This should provide greater consistency in gas prices shown on the confirmation screen, in addition to a general increase in the speed of transactions.

“To accomplish this, we’ve launched an advanced gas estimation API rolling out first inside our Swaps feature, and then for all MetaMask transactions.”

The application programming interface aggregates multiple gas estimation services to provide the optimal gas estimations.

The average transaction price on the Ethereum network is higher than it has been for most of November — currently at $2.45 according to BitInfoCharts. It peaked to $5 on Nov. 26 when there was heightened activity across various DeFi protocols.

In early October, BeInCrypto reported that MetaMask had launched gas-saving token swaps.

Phishing, Fake Apps on the Rise

Search engines and social media giants are doing very little to prevent scammers from exploiting their ad platforms which means extra vigilance is needed by end-users.

The report posted a screenshot from a Google search page showing a malicious website at the top of its results as a paid ad. The site uses a fake domain name but has worded the ad, and paid Google, to get it to the top impersonating the real thing. Platforms such as Facebook are also rife with fake ads and scams with the company still profiting from them.

Fake apps for DeFi protocols such as Uniswap have also been found on Google Play and it’s likely that there are a number of spurious MetaMask apps floating around as well. Be vigilant and always check that you are downloading from the original source.

Disclaimer

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Martin has been writing on cyber security and infotech for two decades. He has previous trading experience and has been actively covering the blockchain and crypto industry since 2017.

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