Following an announcement earlier this week regarding Xmixer which would enable trustless mixing for XCurrency, some good news has been shared by the development team over at XCurrency. Much time has passed, and finally, XCurrency has released the final component of its privacy-centric payments solution: trustless ad hoc mesh networking.
It is a single protocol such as the bitcoin blockchain, and its primary function is to allow any app on the XC network to communicate on behalf of other apps without the others having to trust them.
This is very innovative technology which has not been seen before. Therefore, an example has been given through the press release provided by the XCurrency team:
“Put briefly, when someone makes a private payment using the XC app, the transaction is split into fragments, which are sent to several other nodes also making payments. These nodes form ad hoc mesh networks with each other that exist only for the duration of each transaction, in which no node functions as a hub or ‘server.’ The nodes mix transactions in a manner analogous to coinshuffle, where no node knows which other node’s coins they’re forwarding, and no link exists on the blockchain between sender and receiver.”
The goal in place is quite simple: to achieve true privacy. Yet, how does it differ from its counterparts such as coinjoin? Here is an interesting list of disadvantages of CoinJoin in comparison to XCurrency:
- CoinJoin is vulnerable to a denial-of-service attack: if a single node fails (or refuses) to sign a transaction, then every participating node has to re-sign. In contrast, by design XC’s mesh is continually and dynamically altering its topology, and has no trouble of this sort.
- CoinJoin has no intrinsic way of disciplining bad nodes, whereas XC’s mesh is capable of discovering bad nodes and excluding them from the mesh.
- Nodes participating in a CoinJoin transaction generally know the sender, receiver, and amount sent. Thus, even though the blockchain does not record a link between sender and receiver, the information can be extracted from a node. XC’s trustless mixing conceals links between sender and receiver even from forwarding nodes, and its multipath fragmentation conceals the amount. Thus even if nodes are hacked, they cannot reveal sensitive information.
- CoinJoin generally requires a mixing server or some form of semi-centralised supernode (cf. DarkCoin “masternodes”). XC’s mesh networks are entirely distributed, even with the recent addition of Xmixers.
Indeed, it appears that XCurrency does in fact solve most, if not all of the disadvantages suffered by CoinJoin, which has been used in many other coins. Even apart from CoinJoin, the team over at XCurrency also defended XCurrency’s ability to be a viable TOR replacement:
“A trustless mesh network is ideally suited to conceal IP addresses, since nodes mix content and are not able to discover the nature of the content, and because its distributed topology renders it highly resilient to attacks against any one node or collection of nodes. As such, XC nodes make an excellent foundation for next-generation IP-concealment. This feature can be expected in future XC developments. Added to the privacy features above, it results in 100% privacy for XC users.”
What lies in the Future?
Plans for a distributed content delivery service have been made public just under a month ago as well as a trustless multipath mesh which would be ideal for a service such as Web 3.0. Not only will Web 3.0 be enhanced by XC’s plans to recruit mobile devices as content servers, users can be rewarded for running XCurrency on their mobile devices. “XC is optimally positioned to deliver a platform for next-generation distributed apps and services,” reads the press release.
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