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MetaMask exposes methods to untrusted parties like websites to interact with the user's wallet via an Ethereum JSON-RPC API. Some of its methods are simple pass-throughs to the user's current selected Ethereum network node, as defined by the Ethereum JSON-RPC API. Additional methods are provided by the wallet to interact with the user's accounts, including:

  • eth_requestAccounts: To request access to the user's accounts.
  • eth_accounts: Access to the user's accounts.
  • eth_sendTransaction: To propose Ethereum transactions to the user.
  • wallet_watchAssets: To propose ERC-20 assets to the user's
  • personal_sign: To propose human-readable signature challenges to the user.
  • eth_signTypedData_v3: To propose the signature of structured data to the user.
  • eth_signTypedData_v4: To propose the signature of structured data to the user which can also support recursive structs and null values.
  • eth_sign: To propose low-level binary signatures to the user (this method will show the user a hazardous warning and is not recommended for good user experience)
  • wallet_getEncryptionKey: (Desktop only) To request a public encryption key from the user that can be used to send them encrypted messages.
  • wallet_decrypt: (Desktop only) To propose the user decrypts a message that is intended for their public encryption key. The prompt allows the user to view the message before optionally returning it to the requesting site.

EIP 2255 Permissions System

On desktop, an invocation of eth_requestAccounts will prompt the user to select any number of accounts to expose to the requesting website, and only those selected accounts will be exposed to the website.

On mobile, after a user connected to a website, subsequent calls to eth_accounts will return whatever the user's current selected account is, which is whatever account the user has most recently looked at.