Privacy coins are a hot topic in the current cryptocurrency environment. While governments across the globe look to regulate cryptocurrency trades, privacy coins are doing their best to maintain their anonymity. Coins like Monero and Dash use ring signatures and scrambled transactions respectively. However, Zcash uses a zero-knowledge proof algorithm to obfuscate transaction information. The strengths of each are up for debate, but famous whistle-blower Edward Snowden made his choice clear. Asked in a recent webcam appearance, Snowden commented;
“I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, Zcash for me is the most interesting right now, because the privacy properties of it are truly unique,”
This is high praise from the former NSA agent who has become a major voice against the data harvesting that is now common on the Internet. Snowden released a treasure trove of NSA and US Intelligence services information in 2013. While he is a controversial figure, his whistle-blowing actions have forced a discussion on the illusion of privacy that society is currently experiencing.
Edward Snowden’s Unexpected Support
Snowden originally commented on Zcash back in September of 2017. He responded to a tweet that spoke of Zcash’s intense cryptographic credentials, which include both professional and academic developers. Snowden commented that he agreed with the user in question, but also added;
“Zcash’s privacy tech makes it the most interesting Bitcoin alternative. Bitcoin is great, but ‘if it’s not private, it’s not safe.’”
Taking into account Snowden’s life so far, it’s not hard to see why he would have such an opinion. He peered behind the curtain of the NSA and saw exactly the lengths to which they go to spy on the average citizen. Disgusted by what he saw, he began a clandestine mission to release information to the public. This resulted in one of the largest exposes on intelligence gathering in history. Since then, the United States and their allies forced him into hiding in Russia. From there, he maintains a presence on the Internet, advocating against the non-consensual gathering of personal data.
How Zcash Outperforms the Competition
Zcash is a relative newcomer to the field of privacy cryptocurrency if you compare it against front-runners Monero and Dash. All three have an impressive price, but Monero established itself as the cryptocurrency of the dark web. Their ring signature privacy metric helps hide transactions, while their mining algorithm prevents larger scale mining. This resulted in Monero mining software cropping up in malware – harvesting infected computers to mine the currency.
Dash is slightly more mainstream and is one of the first cryptocurrencies to offer real-world usability. Previously called DarkCoin, Dash has signed up dozens of merchants willing to use their cryptocurrency for purchases. Their ‘PrivateSend’ option also allows a theoretically scrambled transaction method that prevents tracing.
Snowden has expressed disbelief that Monero does enough to prevent traceability. Zcash’s cryptographically sound zero proof system is more effective in his eyes – and those of many investors. While Zcash is sitting at 25th in terms of total market cap, Monero and Dash currently lead at 11th and 12th, respectively. That may change with the upcoming hard forks in the Zcash blockchain.
‘Overwinter’ and the Zcash Road Map
The Zcash development team have made it very clear that they intend to use the ability to fork cryptocurrency to their advantage with system upgrades. Instead of soft forking the blockchain, Zcash will perform a full hard fork to the transitive ‘Overwinter’ network upgrade. The development team prefers to call the process a ‘network upgrade’ if only to avoid the confusion that results from using the hard fork terminology within the crypto-sphere.
Overwinter introduces several new features to the Zcash platform. Replay protection prevents transactions performed on the old chain from repeating on the new chain – critical for ensuring a complete transfer over to the new chain. Additionally, transaction expiry will be added and prevent user transactions from being trapped due to miner shortages. A transaction that is not performed in a timely manner will be kicked back to the sending user.
The major key of the Overwinter project is to prepare users for frequent ‘network upgrades.’ The development team hopes that Overwinter will lead directly into their new Sapling protocol in late 2018. If this upgrade goes smoothly, that won’t be a problem. If it doesn’t, they will have valuable data to ensure that the next upgrade performs better.
Zcash and the Market
While many people may have a poor opinion of Edward Snowden’s actions, no one can doubt his technological prowess. As such, his shining endorsement of Zcash is a sign that the development team is performing at a high level. Zcash has the same total supply as Bitcoin – and as such, their market cap can effectively be measured against Bitcoin’s own.
While still much lower, it would be unwise to suggest that Zcash cannot gain ground against the legacy chain. The current price per coin is $245, with a history of prices nearly three times that at the end of the past year. This would require the market to return to previous market cap levels, but very few people doubt that will happen eventually. Given the current nature of government regulation and cryptocurrency skepticism, Zcash could be a very safe investment moving forward.
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Disclaimer: This article should not be taken as, and is not intended to provide, investment advice. Global Coin Report and/or its affiliates, employees, writers, and subcontractors are cryptocurrency investors and from time to time may or may not have holdings in some of the coins or tokens they cover. Please conduct your own thorough research before investing in any cryptocurrency and read our full disclaimer.
Image courtesy of Mike Mozart via Flickr
Reasons Why You Are Much Safer When Crypto Trading on Dexes
While many cryptocurrencies aim to bring the change to the world by bringing full decentralization, one aspect of the crypto space still remains mostly centralized, and that is the way they are exchanged. Most crypto exchanges are centralized companies, where traders and investors need to deposit their coins for safekeeping. This is a risky way to handle the funds, as exchanges remain susceptible to hacks and theft, as many realized recently, after the hack of the world’s largest exchange by trading volume, Binance.
During the hack, around 7,000 BTC (over $40 million) was taken, and sent to multiple wallets, never to be seen again — for now, at least. The hack also came as quite a shock, as Binance was known for its efficiency, security, and high levels of confidence. It also made people realize that their coins are not really theirs if they need to rely on third parties, such as exchanges, to keep them safe. As a result, many are now turning away from centralized exchanges, and are heading towards decentralized ones — also known as DEXes.
Here are some reasons why you might want to consider doing the same.
1. True ownership of your coins
The crypto community has a saying: “not your keys, not your coins.” The saying is now more relevant than ever, but it does not apply on DEXes. Decentralized exchanges…
Crypto Billionaire Predicts Massive Price Growth by 2021
Crypto prices are once again going up, and Bitcoin has just passed a major resistance level at $6,000. With a situation like that, it is not surprising that everyone in the crypto community is looking forward to the future, wondering what to expect in years to come. Many experts have already given their predictions, some more optimistic than others, but almost all bullish.
Crypto billionaire Mike Novogratz has always been very supportive of cryptocurrencies, and very bullish on Bitcoin. He recently stated that he sees the coins’ prices triple in the following 18 months, meaning that Bitcoin’s return to $20,000 might not be far away, according to him.
He noted that Bitcoin is back to $6,000 after its price hit as low as $3,100 only a few months ago. These days, Novogratz does not believe Bitcoin will return to such lows unless there is a devastating exchange hack or a major shift in regulations. Of course, there was a big hack that had the potential to damage the coin’s price, only days ago. The world’s largest crypto exchange by trading volume, Binance, saw a significant security breach which resulted in a theft of 7,000 BTC.
However, so far, the coin did not react negatively to this incident. While Novogratz believed that such an event would shatter the new confidence in BTC, it simply did not happen. However, he…
TokenRoll (TKR) Platform Will Take Online Casinos to the Next Level
Corporate executives are turning to blockchain technology more than ever in an attempt to revolutionize the business world. Although blockchain is still a relatively new concept, that hasn’t stopped more and more companies from jumping on the bandwagon. This hot new technology has quickly gained a reputation for providing greater transparency, enhanced security, improved traceability, increased efficiency, and low costs. One industry that could certainly benefit from decentralization is the online gambling market, specifically, online casinos. TokenRoll (TKR) has developed a platform that appears to offer a promising alternative to centralized casinos.
Problems with Centralized Casinos
The primary reason why blockchain technology is being implemented so quickly is because it solves a lot of the problems typically associated with the traditional business model. And online casinos are no different. It still needs to be said that centralized casinos have proven that there is a great demand for online gambling. The market is growing faster than anyone could have predicted, and future opportunities appear very promising and lucrative. But industries are continually evolving and this one is no different.
A few of the problems facing centralized casinos include the following:
- Little to no transparency
- Consumer lack of confidence
- Privacy concerns
- 48-72 hour wait time for withdrawals
These are four monumental issues that need to be addressed quickly given the global growth of the market. Casinos need to…
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