Developers are hoping to bring a higher level of transaction anonymity to the bitcoin blockchain with a prototype for the “Dandelion” privacy project. The test, according to an email sent to the bitcoin development mailing list on Thursday, comes after the team behind the project added more theoretical analysis in a bid to address concerns that the initial Dandelion proposal may be exposed to a deanonymization attack.
A variety of projects have focused on this question within the bitcoin network, all of which seek to improve privacy for users of the public blockchain. The Dandelion Bitcoin Improvement Proposal (BIP) was first published in June of last year, backed by Zcash advisor and University of Illinois assistant professor Andrew Miller, and initially aimed to introduce a two-phase route for bitcoin transactions: a “stem,” which is the transaction itself, and “fluff,” which is an obfuscation phase that would eventually obscure the original IP address of a bitcoin sender. However, following the proposal’s publication, Bitcoin Core developer Greg Maxwell pointed out that the tech may run into deanonymization over time, which means attackers will still be able to identify the origin by cross-checking transaction patterns (Coindesk).
The third largest mobile handset maker in the world Huawei Technologies Co. will begin allowing their users the ability to download Bitcoin wallets on their devices. The announcement comes from BTC.com’s vice president of business operations, Alejandro de la Torre, as the BTC.com wallet is slated to become the first cryptocurrency app offered by Huawei’s AppGallery. In an interview with bloomberg, de la Torre stated “It’s a good opportunity to tap into the Chinese market. The use of cashless payments with apps is very big and the traditional banking system is lacking, so there’s a good use case for crypto payments to grow there.” According to Bloomberg, the wallet will not only come pre-installed on all new Huawei and Honor phones but will also be rolled out on older devices in the months ahead – meaning virtually all users of the third most popular mobile phone brand will become owners of Bitcoin wallets (Bitcoinist)>
Ethereum creator Vitalik Buterin gave a presentation during the Community Ethereum Development Conference (EDCON), in Toronto, and explained the steps to becoming a casper validator. The Casper Friendly Finality Gadget (FFG) is an “overlay process that lives on top of the existing proof-of-work chain to give blocks additional security. However, it does not replace proof-of-work; it only verifies it. Finality is defined as an operation that, once completed, cannot be reverted.
Casper FFG is an important stepping stone on the road to fully switching Ethereum to proof-of-stake. It recruits nodes into becoming validators of the network. A validator is someone who has a pile of ETH and deposits it into a smart contract, and runs a node that basically signs coins with the same key that controls that ETH, in order to participate in Ethereum’s consensus algorithm and keep the network running. The steps to becoming a casper validator include choosing the validation code, choosing the withdrawal address, making a deposit, staying online, and logging out (ETH News).
China wants to release hard-and-fast standards rules for blockchain by the end of 2019, These take the form of basic, business and application standards which will be safety and interoperability. A dedicated working group, dubbed the Blockchain and Distributed Ledger Technology Standardization Committee, will handle development of the project. China has already sought to experiment with private blockchains in various forms, continuing its narrative that the technology holds promise for the economy while cryptocurrencies themselves remain outlawed. March saw the launch of the government Blockchain Registry Open Platform (BROP), designed to streamline government processes under the directorship of a string of entities under the ultimate control of the People’s Bank of China (PBOC) (bitcoinist).
And lastly, the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has granted Broadridge Financial Solutions a patent for a blockchain technology solution designed specifically to enhance and streamline the processes for proxy voting and repurchase agreements. The patent states that Broadridge’s invention relates to database-centered computer network systems and computer-implemented methods for cryptographically-secured distributed data management (eth news).