Paper 2017/635

Perun: Virtual Payment Hubs over Cryptocurrencies

Stefan Dziembowski, Lisa Eckey, Sebastian Faust, and Daniel Malinowski


Payment channels emerged recently as an efficient method for performing cheap \emph{micropayments} in cryptocurrencies. In contrast to traditional on-chain transactions, payment channels have the advantage that they allow for nearly unlimited number of transactions between parties without involving the blockchain. In this work, we introduce \emph{Perun}, an off-chain channel system that offers a new method for connecting channels that is more efficient than the existing technique of ``routing transactions'' over multiple channels. To this end, Perun introduces a technique called ``virtual payment channels'' that avoids involvement of the intermediary for each individual payment. In this paper we formally model and prove security of this technique in the case of one intermediary, who can be viewed as a ``payment hub'' that has direct channels with several parties. Our scheme works over any cryptocurrency that provides Turing-complete smart contracts. As a proof of concept, we implemented Perun's smart contracts in \emph{Ethereum}.

Note: We slightly changed the title. We also rewrote the paper by (a) providing an informal description of the protocol, (b) giving an informal security properties, and (c) correcting several typos.

Available format(s)
Publication info
Published elsewhere. Minor revision.IEEE S&P 2019
cryptocurrenciessmart contractspayments
Contact author(s)
stefan dziembowski @ gmail com
2018-09-01: last of 6 revisions
2017-06-28: received
See all versions
Short URL
Creative Commons Attribution


      author = {Stefan Dziembowski and Lisa Eckey and Sebastian Faust and Daniel Malinowski},
      title = {Perun: Virtual Payment Hubs over Cryptocurrencies},
      howpublished = {Cryptology ePrint Archive, Paper 2017/635},
      year = {2017},
      note = {\url{}},
      url = {}
Note: In order to protect the privacy of readers, does not use cookies or embedded third party content.