NFT data storage: Is your NFT safe?

When we are talking about physical assets, the place to “store” them is very simple and straightforward. To prove the existence of physical assets (such as gold or real estate) is supported by the laws of physics. Therefore, there has never been a risk of physical assets disappearing suddenly out of thin air. But for NFT, the situation has become more complicated now.

The nuances of NFT

For the traditional ownership model, the laws of physics can guarantee that the gold purchased by someone will never disappear, which is a trivial fact. However, the newly emerging ownership methods in the digital space present new challenges to the immutability of assets. By using blockchain technology, creators can make digital items scarce and valuable. This also frees us from the copy-and-paste method used when dealing with online content, and opens up many new opportunities for digital ownership of digital goods.

NFT is a pioneer in leading this new trend, and now more than ever, we need to study the nuances of NFT investment. Although the emerging economies have brought huge returns, we still have to be alert to some unknown risks in NFT investment.

How important is the data of an NFT

The core value of NFT is what it represents . The item can be an image of an artwork, an .eth name, etc. Therefore, it is clear that if the project disappears from the Internet, NFT will lose its value. This is not a recent phenomenon. Many NFT projects are vulnerable to this risk. This article aims to provide you with everything you need to know about NFT data security.

For your NFT, this is not the end of the world!

NFT worth 1 million US dollars is facing the risk of losing its value. We need to raise relevant awareness about this. Although this does not mean that it is applicable to all NFTs, understanding what makes NFTs easy to lose their value will help you make more risk-conscious decisions.

Usually, this problem will be ignored, but it is an important indicator for detecting potential hazards. However, if you are aware of this risk, then no one can harm you. This is the beauty of blockchain. It is open and transparent, and the data it displays never lies.

NFT data storage method

Each project uses the most reasonable and maintainable path to store NFT data. There are two types of data storage:



You might think: “Wait, I thought we were talking about blockchain, everything is permissionless and decentralized”. It depends on the situation, let us explore this topic in more depth.

How decentralized is NFT?

The blockchain is a decentralized ledger, which is supported by cryptography and opens the door to the existence of digital assets. Although blockchain and digital assets are fundamentally decentralized, the situation of NFT is slightly different from that of ERC20 tokens.

The core of an NFT is a smart contract hosted on a blockchain such as E**. This NFT smart contract generates (also called casting) ERC721 token. It provides a unique URI (Uniform Resource Identifier) ​​for each token. The URI is like the ID number of the NFT. So far, everything we have talked about has happened on the blockchain in a decentralized way. From this point of view, NFT data is divided into those two categories.

The URI of a token is like an address. This address is unique for each NFT, and it points to the place where the NFT data is stored. Just like how the address of your home points to its location in the city, the URI of the NFT points to its location on the Internet.

The blockchain does not require the author of the smart contract to point the URI of the token to a decentralized place. Therefore, it is up to the developer to determine the storage location of the NFT data. The data consists of titles, images, and some attributes.

The conclusion is that although NFT is fundamentally decentralized, the URI of the token may point to a centralized database. This means that NFT still has some centralization risks.

Data storage dilemma

Usually, developers decide whether they want NFT data to point to a centralized or decentralized database. Technically speaking, the metadata of NFTs can be stored on the blockchain itself. These NFTs are called on-chain NFTs.

Projects such as Squiggly have adopted this approach. NFT’s token URI is stored on a centralized API (application programming interface), but the image is also hard-coded on the chain for backup.

This means that an NFT image from Squiggly will not be damaged and is permanent.

NFT data storage: Is your NFT safe?

But decentralized file storage is not limited to the expensive way of storing data directly on the blockchain.

Developers of projects such as Bored Apes have adopted decentralized alternatives. The problems associated with making decentralized file storage networks are not new. Even before E**, people were already thinking about this issue. There are already some solutions such as FileCoin and IPFS technology. The most popular method is to use IPFS technology.

NFT data storage: Is your NFT safe?

(Data source:

As you can see, we have assigned an immutable metadata label to this NFT, even if it does not have metadata on the chain. So how does it make it immutable? Because its data is stored on IPFS, this is a decentralized storage network.

IPFS stands for Interplanetary File System. The agreement aims to establish a peer-to-peer network for storing data. If BTC is a peer-to-peer currency, then IPFS is the same for files. Each file in IPFS has a unique address (just like the token URI of NFT). This unique address is distributed in the network. After an image is stored on IPFS, it cannot be changed, and it will continue to exist until the death of the network. Therefore, it is not affected by centralized attacks and corrosion.

This solution is most common in the use cases of NFT art and collectibles, because their metadata is not dynamic and does not need to be changed. However, this solution cannot be extended to digital asset games such as Axie.

If you look at an Axie, you will find that unlike the first two, there are no immutable metadata tags on it. This means that NFTs are susceptible to centralization risks and cannot be censorship-resistant.

NFT data storage: Is your NFT safe?

(Data source:

Let’s study why this happens:

If you have ever played a video game, you will know that your character is dynamic. This means you can upgrade, lose a battle, and so on. The dynamic nature of NFT assets in the game makes it almost impossible for developers to store data in a decentralized manner. This is why Axie must rely on a centralized database so that the change of roles does not cost the player too much gas. Imagine that you have to pay for every action in the game. This will definitely ruin the gaming experience. This is why the Axie developers decided to store metadata in a centralized database. We can prove this by using the Etherscan tool and checking Axie’s token URI.

NFT data storage: Is your NFT safe?

Decentralized data storage solutions

The blockchain ecosystem has an innovative and vibrant culture, and all kinds of talents are studying brand-new solutions. Solutions like IPFS have passed the test of time. However, as we have seen in the digital asset game, current solutions still have certain limitations. NFT is still a very young technology, this is just the beginning of a long journey. Need is the mother of invention. As the demand for NFT continues to increase, there are also some new and more scalable solutions. One of these innovative solutions is Crust Network .

Crust Network is essentially an IPFS incentive-level protocol and a substrate-based blockchain, a decentralized storage network built for the Web3.0 ecosystem. It aims to build a decentralized cloud ecosystem that values ​​data privacy and ownership.

The NFT trading platform integrates Crust and IPFS technologies to provide an NFT metadata file. The solution can be divided into five steps:

1. Import the NFT file into IPFS;

2. Store and distribute NFT files through Crust Network;

3. Monitor the storage status of NFT files in Crust Network;

4. The user accesses the NFT file through the NFT trading platform;

5. Re-order your order within six months to automatically extend the expiration time of your NFT file.

Crust Network is essentially an IPFS incentive-level protocol and a substrate-based blockchain, a decentralized storage network built for the Web3.0 ecosystem. It aims to build a decentralized cloud ecosystem that values ​​data privacy and ownership.

Recently, Crust also launched a low-threshold Web3 storage tool: Crust Files. Upload data with one click and store it for free. The official version of Crust Files will be launched soon, and there will be an activity reward of $50,000,000.

Posted by:CoinYuppie,Reprinted with attribution to:
Coinyuppie is an open information publishing platform, all information provided is not related to the views and positions of coinyuppie, and does not constitute any investment and financial advice. Users are expected to carefully screen and prevent risks.

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