Privacy is a growing demand across the digital space these days. The advent of social media and the perils stirred up by social media behemoths such as Facebook have helped foster a conversation about the need for anonymity in a rapidly shrinking online world.
But privacy and anonymity contrast the very nature of design in blockchain technology and digital ledgers. Data must be projected across a massive network in order to facilitate transactions in blockchain and cryptocurrency platforms.
In response, countless start-ups and initiatives have begun to sprout up across the tech market looking to change this. Instilling privacy in digital ledger technology may seem hard to achieve, given the grounded nature of this network, but there are some who deem it possible.
Nightfall, a project launched recently on the GitHub platform aims to facilitate anonymous transactions on the Ethereum coin. This initiative makes use of a prominent technology commonly referred to as ‘zero-knowledge proofs’ to cloak transactions and thus enable anonymity.
Another Ethereum-focused startup, Enigma, envisions a safe and privacy-enabled environment for both blockchain and many other digital platforms.
When talking about privacy in the computational realm, says Tor Bair, an official from Enigma, we need to go further than securing anonymity for mere transactions. He says that one needs to be able to do the same with digital computations and encrypted data as well.
Moreover, Itamar Lesuisse, head of Argent, a crypto wallet corporation, believes that anonymity on crypto/blockchain platforms must be viewed as a given right.
“If you just look at the most simplest use case, if I say, ‘Hey Christine, can you send me ten dollars? Here’s my wallet address.’ Now, you know how much money I have.”
Lesuisse commented in a recent interview.
“I’m talking here about friends who I asked to send me some money. They would instantly know how much I have. It’s so transparent, which is a great picture of blockchain, but for some users, it might scare them away to use it at scale.”
It’s for this very reason that Lesuisse and other pioneers in the digital ledger field are propelling new initiatives to increase privacy in blockchain platforms.
According to Julien Niset, a chief science officer at Argent, the Ethereum platform needs to tackle a growing list of requirements when talking about privacy.
The network being launched by Argent is termed, Hopper. It enables privacy-linked transactions on the Ethereum platform when using a mobile device.