Monero (XMR) is a privacy-focused cryptocurrency that allows anonymous and untraceable transactions by default using various cryptographic technologies that provide strong privacy guarantees. To maintain decentralization, Monero undergoes regular protocol changes to its mining algorithm and other features every six months to avoid monopolies and cartelization.
Launched in April 2014 as a fork of BitMonero — itself a fork of Bytecoin (BCN) — Monero’s core development was driven by a group of largely pseudonymous developers led by Ricardo Spagni, also known as Fluffypony. Spagni left his role as lead maintainer of the project in December 2019 to further decentralize Monero’s core development and focus on building products and services on the protocol.
Over the years, Monero has garnered a reputation as a cryptocurrency of choice on the darknet because of its strong privacy and anonymity features that exceed most cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin (BTC).