Is there any way for a remote webserver to connect to a USB device using serial? If so, why did major hardware wallets use a Chrome Extension as opposed to a backend server for connection? Ledger used to do it and Trezor still does it to connect hardware wallets to their own websites.


  • No, there isn't a way to have a direct secure connection. Previously each wallet had to maintain its own API which is in itself very dangerous from a security perspective. – Ismael Oct 19 '19 at 0:23
  • Ah. So using extensions was a way to get around the API? – supra411 Oct 20 '19 at 7:12
  • What do you mean by API? The API that the server sends to the wallet? Sorry, I'm just trying to wrap my head around the system. – supra411 Oct 22 '19 at 5:53
  • For security reasons a web application doesn't have direct access to local hardware, it is the browser and OS that expose certain API that a webapp can use. For a wallet you need to ask for anything related to the private key. For example the Ethereum address or to sign a transaction. This is the API for interaction with usb devices from within chrome developer.chrome.com/apps/usb. – Ismael Oct 22 '19 at 14:58

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