Matic AMA Recap with Founder of WolfEdge Capital, Mohak Agarwal
On the 6th of January, 2021, Mohak Agarwal, the Founder of WolfEdge Capital, was live at the Matic Network telegram AMA Session, to provide the Matic community with insights on their Validator Nodes, and why staking on their node is a great choice. The session was moderated by Delroy, one of Matic Network’s Telegram Community moderator.
In order to ensure clarity to my readers, this article has been divided into two segments; the first segment, gives full account of the questions asked by the moderator of this AMA session (Delroy), while the second segment, gives account of the questions asked by Matic community members.
DelRoy — Welcome to today’s AMA with WolfEdge Capital. We have Mohak joining us today for the AMA. Hey Mohak How is it going with you? How are things at your end?
Mohak — Hey DelRoy. Thanks for having me here. I am doing great, thanks. The markets are doing amazing well, haha. How are things with you? Happy New Year!
DelRoy — Happy New year to you too! And yes, the Markets have been doing great since the end of last year. Would you like to provide us with an introduction about WolfEdge and a little bit about your journey as well?
Mohak — Sure. WolfEdge Capital is a Hong Kong based investment fund that invests in early stage blockchain projects. Our investments in Proof of Stake projects led us to start running validator nodes and ever since we started running our first validator node, we never stopped.
Now we run validator nodes on a variety of Proof of Stake networks using a very reliable infrastructure.
DelRoy — Oh great! And talking about PoS Systems, would you also like to tell us more about the different networks you’re operating nodes on how the journey started with operating nodes in general? The community loves to hear a story.
Mohak — We feel that the validators are the extended team for a network. By running validator nodes, we get to know so many things about the network, the team’s competency to execute things. We get a chance to work with the team more closely.
We are currently running nodes on Matic Network, Skale Network, Oasis Protocol, Akash Network, Tomochain, Avalanche, Fuse, and in the final process of integration on a few more networks that we’ll be announcing soon.
DelRoy — That sounds exciting. Plus a great host of networks that you’re already operating nodes on. So in terms of Matic, what made you choose Matic Networks as one of the nodes to operate nodes on? What was the deciding factor?
Mohak — With Ethereum gas fee soaring everyday, there is a serious need of an L2 solution which can scale Etehreum itself and we feel that Matic is already at a very good position to do that.
Now this is bit personal but I love the way the Matic team listen to the constructuve feedback and take the decisions at rocket speed, which is not very common in this space. We are very much aligned with Matic’s vision.
DelRoy — Thanks a lot for the kind works Mohak Really appreciate it and yes, you’re absolutely right. There is high need for a solution like Matic when gas prices are so high. So now we know that you are operating nodes on multiple networks. But how do you ensure that you run your nodes efficiently? What measures do you take to ensure that?
Mohak — This is a great question. Gonna be a long one, please bear with me.
We currently use a combination of cloud servers and will be moving all the nodes to our space in a Tier 4 datacenter in India. All our ndoes operate behind a hardware firewall and accessible only via private tunnel. They are connected via redundant gigabit fiber for internet and protected by Arbor Network for DDOS attach. We use industry’s best products for safeguarding our infrastructure.
We have deployed Fortigate firewall with Unified threat protection as external firewall which filters any malicious traffic on the perimiter itself. This is followed by latest Cisco Nexus series switches for very high throughput with enterprise security features. Every node runs in an isolated zone segregated by firewall, containing any possible attacks or network floowing attampts due to any bug or vulnerability in the node software. All nodes are regularly scanned by Tenable IO vulnerability management tool and all vulnerabilities are patched on the day zero itself.
On top of it, our nodes are monitored 24/7. If any node miss signing blocks above a threshold, then our engineer get the notification and can replace the node from the backup nodes that we operate.
DelRoy — Thanks for the detailed response Mohak. I must that is very informative. So to the important question of the day, In terms of Delegation, why should delegators stake on your node? What would be the benefits for them?
Mohak — First of all, we have never resigned a node from any network till now. Whenever we engage with a network, we do it for long term. We don’t compete on fee too heavily but when it comes to providing the best infrsutructure to our delegators, we compete really hard. We have mantained an amazing uptime. Over the coming months, we will also be developing some really cool stuff on Matic
DelRoy — Yes and I must say that your node has been running with near 100% uptime. And that is really good news for the delegators. Another exciting question from the community. What would be the commission rate that you are planning to set for your node?
Mohak — Thanks. We have kept it 10% for now and will observe the community participation for a few weeks.
DelRoy — Great! So another question in terms of delegation. A lot of people have concerns when delegating to an external node. What kind of concerns do people have when considering who to delegate through and how do you address these?
Mohak — A lot of times delegators focus too much on the commision that a validator is charging and fail to notice the infrastructure that the validator is using. A small percentage of difference in commission won’t make huge difference in returns for the delegator but goes long way for validator to upgrade their infrastructure frequently.
Everything works well in the normal scenarios, the real tests comes during the abnormal scenarios and that’s when all the hard work comes to fruition. We ask our delegators to consider these things before taking a decision.
DelRoy — Absolutely. That’s very well said. Also, the next question is in line for new and coming validators. Once operating, what are some big challenges validators are met with from a business and personal perspective?
Mohak — That’s a great question and we have learned well along the way. Starting a validator node is a pretty straight forward process using the documentations. The real test comes to maintain the uptime and security of the nodes. My suggestion for any upcoming validator would be to acquire reliable hardware, wonk on monitoring systems, fall back mechanisms first and then start the node. Lastly, to not charge such a low commission that would make them cut costs on the security aspects of things.
DelRoy — I do have another question in line of what you said. What are the first things you’d encourage someone like up and coming Validators on POS networks to consider before getting started?
Mohak — I would ask validator to tighten their seat belts before starting a validator node on any PoS network. Without the proper systems, processes in place, it’s gonna be very stressfull and 24/7 job, no vacations haha. Start the node only once you make up your mind to commit the involvement for the long term. This is not simple as it sounds but super fun once you understand the functioning of each network.
DelRoy — Very well said. And I agree with you completely. Lastly, is there any exciting news that you would like to share with the Community today?
Mohak — Yes, what a great timing. We announced Clay Stack yesterday, which is a liquid staking platform. Soon the delegators on a lot of networks (starting with a few) will be able to earn the staking rewards while having complete liquidity of their assets.
And lastly, let’s make this year a landmark year for Matic.
Community Question 1— How much does WolfEdge Capital pay attention to blockchain initiatives and emerging crypto assets, and why do you run Validator nodes on multiple networks?
Mohak — We are big believer on Proof of Stake networks. By running these validator nodes, we just play our part in contributing to the networks in the best way we can. We are already working on developing some amazing tools for delegators and users for a few chains and will be annoucing them over the coming months.
Community Question 2 — As we know a strong community is very important for successful project. Do you plan to be a local or global project and What strategy will be used to expand the community?
Mohak — That’s very well said. Community is one of the most important thing for any blockchain project. There is no reason to confine the products in geographical boundaries anymore. The best thing that blockchain/crypto did was remvoing the geographical barriers and giving everyone a fair chance.
Community Question 3— Trust and security is very important in any business , what makes investors , customer and users safe secure when working with your project?
Mohak — Security is something that we take very seriously. The most successful attacks in the world were the result of malicious intent(sometimes unknowingly) of the team members.
As I’ve mentioned above about the detailed security infrastructure of our hardware, that goes even further by deploying CyberArk Privilege & Identity Management System integrated to monitor, manage & control teams access to all the components & files in the system. As soon as the Hardware Security Modules would be compatible with Matic, we’ll deploy it to secure even further.