Cryptology ePrint Archive: Report 2020/593

Alt-Coin Traceability

Claire Ye and Chinedu Ojukwu and Anthony Hsu and Ruiqi Hu

Abstract: Many alt-coins developed in recent years make strong privacy guarantees, claiming to be virtually untraceable. This paper explores the extent to which these claims are true after the first appraisals were made about these coins. In particular, we will investigate Monero (XMR) and Zcash (ZEC), competitors in the private cryptocurrency space. We will test how traceable these currencies are after the most recent security updates, and how they hold up against their claims. We run some traceability experiments based on previously published papers for each coin. Results show that, introducing strict security and anonymity requirements into the cryptocurrency ecosystem makes the coin effectively untraceable, as shown by Monero. On the other hand, Zcash still hesitates to introduce changes that alter user behavior. Despite its strong cryptographic features, transactions are overall more traceable.

Category / Keywords: applications / traceability, linkability, monero, zcash

Date: received 19 May 2020, last revised 7 Jul 2020

Contact author: erwaman at gmail com

Available format(s): PDF | BibTeX Citation

Version: 20200707:132010 (All versions of this report)

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