Proxy Accounts

Proxies allow users to use an account (it can be in cold storage or a hot wallet) less frequently but actively participate in the network with the weight of the tokens in that account. Proxies are allowed to perform a limited amount of actions related to specific substrate pallets on behalf of another account. The video below contains more information about using proxies.

Why use a Proxy?

Proxies are helpful because they let you delegate efficiently and add a layer of security. Rather than using funds in a single account, smaller accounts with unique roles can complete tasks on behalf of the main stash account. Proxies can be hotter than the initial account, which can be kept cold, but the weight of the tokens in the colder account can be used by the hotter accounts. This increases the security of your accounts by minimizing the number of transactions the cold account has to make. This also drives attention away from the stash account, although it is possible to determine the relationship between the proxy and the proxied account.

From the security perspective, we can imagine proxies as bodyguards of a VIP, loyal and ready to risk their lives to ensure the VIP's protection. But proxies are also useful in other contexts such as efficient account management at the corporate level. They also provide an elegant solution to change signatories within multi-signature accounts, and they can be used within proxy calls and nested proxy calls. In this page we will explore all these interesting use cases of proxies within the Polkadot ecosystem.

Shown below is an example of how you might use these accounts. Imagine you have one stash account as your primary token-holding account and don't want to access it very often, but you want to participate in staking to earn staking rewards. You could set one of your existing accounts as a staking proxy for that stash account, and use your staking proxy to sign all staking-related transactions.

Having a staking proxy will make the stash account isolated within the staking context. In other words, the account assigned as a staking proxy can participate in staking on behalf of that stash. Without the proxy you will need to sign all the staking-related transactions with the stash. If the proxy is compromised, it doesn't have access to transfer-related transactions, so the stash account could just set a new proxy to replace it. You can also monitor proxies by setting a time-delay.

Creating multiple proxy accounts that act for a single account, lets you come up with more granular security practices around how you protect private keys while still being able to actively participate in the network.


The maximum number of proxies allowed for a single account is 32.

You can have the same proxy for multiple accounts.

Creating Proxy


To create a proxy account read this support article.

Proxy Types

You can set up a proxy account via the proxy pallet. When you set a proxy, you must choose a type of proxy for the relationship. Polkadot offers:

When a proxy account makes a transaction, Polkadot filters the desired transaction to ensure that the proxy account has the appropriate permission to make that transaction on behalf of the cold account. For example, staking proxies have permission to do only staking-related transactions.


For the latest information on the calls and pallets that can be fully accessed by proxies, check the source code in the runtime folder on the Polkadot repository

Any Proxy

As implied by the name, a proxy type of Any allows the proxy account to make any transaction, including balance transfers. In most cases, this should be avoided as the proxy account is used more frequently than the cold account and is therefore less secure.

Non-transfer Proxy

Proxies that are of the type Non-transfer are accounts that allow any type of transaction except balance transfers (including vested transfers). Hence, this proxy does not have permission to access calls in the Balances and XCM pallet.

Governance Proxy

The Governance type will allow proxies to make transactions related to governance (i.e., from the Democracy, Phragmen Election, Treasury, Bounties, Tips, Utility and Child Bounties pallets).


See Governance for more information on governance proxies or watch our technical explainer video that explores this concept.

Staking Proxy


Visit the Advanced Staking Concepts page for more detailed information about staking proxies.

The Staking type allows all staking-related transactions. The stash account is meant to stay in cold storage, while the staking proxy account makes day-to-day transactions like setting session keys or deciding which validators to nominate.

The staking proxy can fully access Staking, Session, Utility and Fast Unstake pallets.


Use a non-transfer instead of a staking proxy to participate in nomination pools. The staking proxy is not enabled to make successful calls to the nomination pools pallet.

Identity Judgement Proxy

The Identity Judgement proxies are in charge of allowing registrars to make judgments on an account's identity. If you are unfamiliar with judgment and identities on chain, please refer to this page. This proxy can only access provide_judgement call from the Identity pallet along with the calls from the Utility pallet.

Cancel Proxy

Proxies that are of the type Cancel allow accounts to reject and remove any time-delay proxy announcements. This proxy can only access reject_announcement call from the Proxy pallet.

Auction Proxy

Proxies that are of the type Auction are accounts that allow transactions pertaining to parachain auctions and crowdloans. The Auction proxy account can sign those transactions on behalf of an account in cold storage. If you already set up a Non-transfer proxy account, it can do everything an Auction proxy can do. Before participating in a crowdloan using an Auction proxy, it is recommended that you check with the respective parachain team for any possible issues pertaining to the crowdloan rewards distribution. Auction proxy can access Auctions, Crowdloan, Registrar and Slots pallets.

Nomination Pools Proxy

Proxies that are of the type Nomination Pools are accounts that allow transactions pertaining to Nomination Pools.

Removing Proxy


Read the section "Removing Proxies" on this support page to learn how to remove proxies.

How to view your Proxy

To view your proxy, just go on the Accounts menu in the Polkadot-JS UI, next to the proxied account you will notice a blue icon. Hover on it, and you will see Proxy overview. Click on it and you will be presented with a list of all proxies for that account.

Additionally, you can head over to the Chain State tab (underneath the Developer menu) on Polkadot-JS Apps. If you've created your proxy on a Kusama account, it is required to change your network accordingly using the top left navigation button. On this page, the proxy pallet should be selected, returning the announcements and proxies functions. The proxies function will allow you to see your created proxies for either one account or for all accounts (using the toggle will enable this). Proxy announcements are what time lock proxies do to announce they are going to conduct an action.

Proxy Deposits

Proxies require deposits in the native currency (i.e. DOT or KSM) to be created. The deposit is required because adding a proxy requires some storage space on-chain, which must be replicated across every peer in the network. Due to the costly nature of this, these functions could open up the network to a Denial-of-Service attack. To defend against this attack, proxies require a deposit to be reserved while the storage space is consumed over the lifetime of the proxy. When the proxy is removed, so is the storage space, and therefore the deposit is returned.

The required deposit amount for n proxies is equal to:

ProxyDepositBase + ProxyDepositFactor * n

where the ProxyDepositBase is the required amount to be reserved for an account to have a proxy list (creates one new item in storage). For every proxy the account has, an additional amount defined by the ProxyDepositFactor is reserved as well (appends 33 bytes to storage location). The ProxyDepositBase is 20.008 DOT and the ProxyDepositFactor is 0.033 DOT.

Time-delayed Proxy

We can add a layer of security to proxies by giving them a delay time. The delay will be quantified in blocks. Polkadot has approximately 6 seconds of block time. A delay value of 10 will mean ten blocks, which equals about one minute delay. The proxy will announce its intended action using the proxy.announce extrinsic and will wait for the number of blocks defined in the delay time before executing it. The proxy will include the hash of the intended function call in the announcement. Within this time window, the intended action may be canceled by accounts that control the proxy. This can be done by the proxy itself using the proxy.removeAnnouncement extrinsic or by the proxied account using the the proxy.rejectAnnouncement extrinsic. Now we can use proxies knowing that any malicious actions can be noticed and reverted within a delay period. After the time-delay, the proxy can use the proxy.proxyAnnounced extrinsic to execute the announced call.


See this video tutorial to learn how you can setup and use time-delayed proxies. The video goes through the example below.

Announcing n calls using a time-delayed proxy also requires a deposit of the form:

announcementDepositBase + announcementDepositFactor * n

where the announcementDepositBase is the required amount to be reserved for an account to announce a proxy call. For every proxy call the account has, an additional amount defined by the announcementDepositFactor is reserved as well. The announcementDepositBase is 20.008 DOT and the announcementDepositFactor is 0.066 DOT.

Let's take for example the stash account Eleanor setting Bob as a time-delayed staking proxy. In this way, if Bob submits an extrinsic to change the reward destination, such extrinsic can be rejected by Eleanor. This implies that Eleanor monitors Bob, and that within the time-delay she can spot the announced extrinsic. Eleanor can check all the proxy call announcements made by her account's proxies on-chain. On Polkadot-JS UI, go to Developer > Storage > Proxy > Announcements to check the hashes for the calls made by the proxy accounts and the block height at which they are enabled for execution.


If you try to use proxy.proxyAnnounced to execute the call within the time-delay window you will get an error "Proxy unannounced" since the announcement will be done after the time delay. Also note that regular proxy.proxy calls do not work with time-delayed proxies, you need to announce the call first and then execute the announced call on a separate transaction.

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