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- Developers of Ethereum Privacy Tool Tornado Cash Smash Their Keys
- EOS, Ethereum and Ripple’s XRP – Daily Tech Analysis – 19/05/20
- Buzzy Ethereum wallet app Argent comes out of stealth – TechCrunch
- DTCC proposes tokenizing private securities on public Ethereum blockchain
- Ethereum Developers Announced: Bad News from ETH 2.0?
Developers of Ethereum Privacy Tool Tornado Cash Smash Their Keys
May 18, 2020 at 22:05 UTC
Credit: Wikimedia Commons
Ethereum’s premier coin mixing service is now permissionless.
Tornado Cash, a privacy tool for obfuscating the history of Ether (ETH) transactions, completed a cryptographic process known as a trusted setup ceremony on May 10 followed by a contract update on Monday to create perpetually self-executing code.
“With a record 1,114 contributions this was by far the largest Trusted Setup Ceremony to date,” Tornado Cash wrote in a May 13 blog post. “By comparison, all other trusted setup ceremonies had less than 200 participants.”
Tornado Cash v1 first launched in August 2019, but remained an audited “experimental software” because the developers retained control over user funds through a multi-sig wallet.
With v2, all that is gone. The MPC and Monday’s contract update effectively break up the developer key by creating a crowdsourced smart contract without a private key.
Techwise, Tornado Cash leans on zero-knowledge proofs (ZKP), or mathematical evidence that a transaction occurred without revealing the information within the payment itself.
Tornado Cash is more readily compared to existing coin mixers on Bitcoin (BTC) because of its retail focus. CoinJoin developers Samourai and Wasabi have brought mixing to retail bitcoin investors, with Samourai available on Google Play as of February (a feature coming in Tornado Cash’s v3, Storm said).
Of course, there are other cryptocurrencies that only focus on privacy solutions, led by zcash (ZEC) and monero (XMR). The Electric Coin Company (ECC), a for-profit firm behind zcash’s development, is currently working on a bridge between itself and the Ethereum blockchain for enabling private transactions.
Just how private?
For Tornado Cash, two questions remain: How many people will use it and how will regulators view it.
That said, bitcoin is often presented as a self-sovereign money alternative while ether’s prevailing use case has fluctuated.
Defining what ether is matters, particularly for Tornado Cash. The efficacy of a privacy protocol – from Zcash to Wasabi – is dependent on the number of users, called the anonymity set. Think of a ballpark crowd: If the stands are full of fans, it’s hard to pick out a singular person in the upper deck. Conversely, an empty stadium only helps frame the lone fanatic.
That sentiment was echoed by former bitcoin core contributor Gavin Andresen in a November blog post on Tornado Cash, highlighting additional measures such as IP-address masking that most users don’t consider.
“I won’t be surprised if there is a paper at the Financial Cryptography 2023 conference showing that 85% of tornado usage was not private; not because the cryptography is broken, but because it is really hard for mere mortals to use something like tornado (or CoinJoin or other similar technologies) in a way that doesn’t leak information about their wallet,” Andresen wrote.
There’s also compliance concerns, with the verdict still out on whether mixers are money transmitters or not.
For his park, Tornado Cash’s Storm said that now that the trusted setup has occurred, little can be pinned on the developers: self-executing code is self-executing code.
That doesn’t mean Storm and co-founder Roman Semenov are wanting to venture beyond the wake. In fact, Tornado Cash included a compliance feature with v2 to counter some regulatory concerns. The new version will include a cryptographic “note” which can prove to anyone presented the transaction’s history. The feature was added in light of reports of crypto exchanges freezing accounts of users who possessed coins with mixed histories.
Storm also pointed to the ECC and Zcash Foundation’s friendly relationship with U.S. regulators despite the cryptocurrency’s focus on privacy.
“We are in a little bit of a different situation [than other mixer wallets]. I think for us it’s very important to become compliant,” Storm said. “We do what we feel is right.”
Author: Alyssa Hertig
EOS, Ethereum and Ripple’s XRP – Daily Tech Analysis – 19/05/20
EOS rose by 1.73% on Monday. Reversing a 0.55% fall from Sunday, EOS ended the day at $2.6618.
A particularly bullish morning saw EOS rally from a morning low $2.6102 to an early morning intraday high $2.7563.
EOS broke through the first major resistance level at $2.6657 and second major resistance level at $2.7136 before hitting reverse.
The reversal saw EOS slide back to a late afternoon intraday low $2.6050 before finding support.
Steering clear of the first major support level at $2.5807, EOS recovered to $2.66 levels to end the day in the green.
At the time of writing, EOS was down by 0.84% to $2.6394. A bearish start to the day saw EOS fall from an early morning high $2.6590 to a low $2.6356.
EOS left the major support and resistance levels untested early on.
EOS would need to move through to $2.6750 levels to bring the first major resistance level at $2.7437 into play.
Support from the broader market would be needed, however, for EOS to break out from the morning high $2.6590.
Barring an extended crypto rally, however, the major first resistance level would likely cap any upside.
Failure to move back through to $2.6750 levels could see EOS fall deeper into the red.
A fall through to the morning low $2.6356 would bring the first major support level at $2.5924 into play.
Barring an extended crypto sell-off, however, EOS should steer clear of the second major support level at $2.5231.
Major Support Level: $2.5924
Major Resistance Level: $2.7437
23.6% FIB Retracement Level: $6.62
38% FIB Retracement Level: $9.76
62% FIB Retracement Level: $14.82
Ethereum rallied by 3.76% on Monday. Following on from a 3.27% gain on Sunday, Ethereum ended the day at $214.83.
A bullish start to the day saw Ethereum rally from an intraday low $206.99 to a mid-morning intraday high $216.99.
Ethereum broke through the first major resistance level at $211.67 and second major resistance level at $216.28 before hitting reverse.
The reversal saw Ethereum slide back to sub-$209 levels by late afternoon before finding support.
Late in the day, Ethereum broke back through the first major resistance level to close out at $214 levels.
At the time of writing, Ethereum was down by 1.06% to $212.56. A bearish start to the day saw Ethereum fall from an early morning high $215.00 to a low $212.25.
Ethereum left the major support and resistance levels untested early on.
Ethereum would need to move through to $213 levels to bring the first major resistance level at $218.88 into play.
Support from the broader market would be needed, however, for Ethereum to break out from Monday’s high $216.99.
Barring a broad-based crypto rebound, resistance at $215 would likely leave Ethereum short of the first major resistance level.
Failure to move through to $213 levels could see Ethereum take a bigger hit later in the day.
A fall back through the morning low to sub-$210 levels would bring the first major support level at $208.88 into play.
Barring an extended crypto sell-off, however, Ethereum should steer clear of sub-$200 levels.
The second major support level at $202.94 should limit any downside on the day.
Major Support Level: $208.88
Major Resistance Level: $218.88
23.6% FIB Retracement Level: $257
38.2% FIB Retracement Level: $367
62% FIB Retracement Level: $543
Ripple’s XRP rose by 2.02% on Monday. Following on from a 0.79% gain on Sunday, Ripple’s XRP ended the day at $0.20530.
Tracking the broader market, Ripple’s XRP rallied from an intraday low $0.20107 to an early morning intraday high $0.20814.
Ripple’s XRP broke through the first major resistance level at $0.20814 and second major resistance level at $0.2075 before hitting reverse.
The reversal saw Ripple’s XRP slide back to $0.20113 by late morning before finding support.
Through the 2nd half of the day, Ripple’s XRP revisited $0.2063 levels before easing back. The recovery saw Ripple’s XRP break back through and hold above the first major resistance level at $0.2043.
At the time of writing, Ripple’s XRP was down by 1.10% to $0.20305. A bearish start to the day saw Ripple’s XRP fall from an early morning high $0.20516 to a low $0.20283.
Ripple’s XRP left the major support and resistance levels untested early on.
Ripple’s XRP will need to move through to $0.2050 levels to support a run at the first major resistance level at $0.2086.
Support from the broader market would be needed, however, for Ripple’s XRP to break out from Monday’s high $0.20814.
Barring a broad-based crypto rebound, the first major resistance level would likely limit any upside.
Failure to move through to $0.2050 levels could see Ripple’s XRP fall deeper into the red.
A fall back through the morning low $0.20283 would bring the first major support level at $0.2015 into play.
Barring a crypto meltdown, however, Ripple’s XRP should steer clear of the second major support level at $0.1978.
Major Support Level: $0.2015
Major Resistance Level: $0.2086
23.6% FIB Retracement Level: $0.3638
38.2% FIB Retracement Level: $0.4800
62% FIB Retracement Level: $0.6678
Please let us know what you think in the comments below.
Author: Bob Mason3 hours ago (May 19, 2020 12:43 AM GMT)
Buzzy Ethereum wallet app Argent comes out of stealth – TechCrunch
Argent is launching the first public version of its Ethereum wallet for iOS and Android. The company has been available as a limited beta for a few months with a few thousand users. But it has already raised a seed and a Series A round with notable investors, such as Paradigm, Index Ventures, Creandum and Firstminute Capital. Overall, the company has raised $16 million.
I managed to get an invitation to the beta a few months ago and have been playing around with it. It’s a well-designed Ethereum wallet with some innovative security features. It also integrates really well with DeFi projects.
Many people leave their crypto assets on a cryptocurrency exchange, such as Coinbase or Binance. But it’s a centralized model — you don’t own the keys, which means that an exchange could get hacked and you’d lose all your crypto assets. Similarly, if there’s a vulnerability in the exchange API or login system, somebody could transfer all your crypto assets to their own wallets.
At heart, Argent is a non-custodial Ethereum wallet, like Coinbase Wallet or Trust Wallet. You’re in control of the keys. Argent can’t initiate a transaction without your authorization for instance.
But that level of control brings a lot of complexities. Hardware wallets, such as Ledger wallets, ask you to write down a seed phrase so that you can recover your wallet if you lose your device. It requires some discipline and it’s hard to understand if you’re not familiar with the concept of seed phrases.
Even Coinbase Wallet tells you to back up your seed phrase when you first create a wallet. “We see them as advanced tools for developers,” Argent co-founder and CEO Itamar Lesuisse told me.
That’s why a new generation of wallets tries to hide the complexity from the end user, such as ZenGo and Argent. Creating a wallet on Argent is one of the best experiences in the cryptocurrency space. Your wallet is secured by something called ‘guardians’.
A guardian can be someone you know and trust, a hardware wallet (or another phone) or a MetaMask account. Argent also provides a guardian service, which requires you to confirm your identity with a text message and an email. If you lose your phone and you want to recover your wallet on another phone, you need to speak to your guardians and get a majority of confirmations. If they can all confirm that, yes, indeed, your phone doesn’t work anymore and you want to recover your crypto assets, the recovery process starts.
Let’s take an example. Here’s your list of guardians:
In total, there are five different factors involved, you including. If you lose your phone, you can recover your wallet by downloading Argent on another phone (factor #1), asking Argent’s guardian service to send you a text and an email to confirm your identity (factor #2) and confirming your identity with the Ledger Nano S (factor #3).
You have reached a majority and the recovery process starts. You’ll get your funds in 36 hours so that you have enough time to cancel it it’s a hijacking attempt.
But you could also have downloaded the Argent app on another phone (factor #1) and pinged your two friends (factor #2 and #3) directly. If they can confirm the same sequence of characters (emojis in that case), the recovery process would start as well.
“I’m interested in social recovery, multi-key schemes,” Ethereum creator Vitalik Buterin said in a TechCrunch interview in July 2018. It’s not a new concept as social media apps already use social recovery systems. On WeChat, if you lose your password, WeChat asks you to select people in your contact list within a big list of names.
In Argent’s case, social recovery adds an element of virality as well. The experience gets better as more people around you start using Argent.
In addition to wallet recovery, Argent uses guardians to put some limits. Just like you have some limits on your bank account, you can set a daily transaction limit to prevent attackers from grabbing all your crypto assets. You can ask your guardians to waive transactions above your daily limits.
Similarly, you can ask your guardians to lock your account for 5 days in case your phone gets stolen.
Argent is focused on the Ethereum blockchain and plans to support everything that Ethereum offers. Of course, you can send and receive ETH. And the startup wants to hide the complexity on this front as well as it covers transaction fees (gas) for you and gives you usernames. This way, you don’t have to set the transaction fees to make sure that it’ll go through.
The startup plans to integrate DeFi projects directly in the app. DeFi stands for decentralized finance. As the name suggests, DeFi aims to bridge the gap between decentralized blockchains and financial services. It looks like traditional financial services, but everything is coded in smart contracts.
There are dozens of DeFi projects. Some of them let you lend and borrow money — you can earn interest by locking some crypto assets in a lending pool for instance. Some of them let you exchange crypto assets in a decentralized way, with other users directly.
Argent lets you access TokenSets, Compound, Maker DSR, Aave, Uniswap V2 Liquidity, Kyber and Pool Together. And the company already has plans to roll out more DeFi features soon.
Overall, Argent is a polished app that manages to find the right balance between security and simplicity. Many cryptocurrency startups want to build the ‘Revolut of crypto’. And it feels like Argent has a real shot at doing just that with such a promising start.
Author: Romain Dillet
DTCC proposes tokenizing private securities on public Ethereum blockchain
Today the DTCC, the world’s largest securities settlement organization, made two significant proposals to tokenize and digitize securities using distributed ledger technology (DLT). The first project aims to offer accelerated settlement and the second to enable the tokenization of private market securities and support secondary trading, including using the public Ethereum blockchain. In 2019 the DTCC’s subsidiaries processed securities transactions valued at $2.15 quadrillion.
The DTCC already has significant experience with DLT. Its Trade Information Warehouse targets the settlement of credit derivatives to the tune of more than $10 trillion. It’s getting ready to launch an upgraded version based on Axoni DLT technology.
The two projects proposed today were published to consult the market. Proofs of Concept (PoCs) have already been conducted.
Project Whitney is the edgier of the two proposals and aims to tokenize private securities and enable secondary trading. This would initially target Regulation D (SEC Exemption) equities.
The tokens would be minted on the public Ethereum blockchain, but there is a compliance oracle that can approve or reject transactions. Additionally, there would be a centralized stock record of the security’s ownership that uses the AWS Quantum Ledger Database.
However, Ethereum is not an exclusive platform. The DTCC has already done another prototype for enterprise blockchain Hyperledger Fabric and the R3 Corda version is underway. Others could be added based on demand.
“Project Whitney presents an exciting opportunity to leverage emerging technologies and develop completely new solutions from the ground up,” said Jennifer Peve, Managing Director, Business Innovation at DTCC.
The DTCC stated one of the reasons for selecting private markets is it believes in the promise of tokenization but that “digitalization can best be applied to opportunities in new markets or under- serviced assets with limited existing automation, such as the U.S. private markets.”
Project Ion aims to shorten the settlement cycle for the DTCC’s core settlement systems. (This Project Ion is unrelated to other Ion DLT projects from other organizations). Stock market volatility in March resulted in far higher margin requirements as well as significant risk as a result of the current two day (T+2) settlement requirement.
The DTCC commented that its systems currently support one day and same day settlement, but “legacy operational industry processes and other factors have prevented the industry from moving beyond T+2.”
In 2017 when the market moved from T+3 to T+2 it was estimated to save the industry $1.36 billion in margin requirements.
Additional benefits anticipated include optimizing capital, reducing risk, improving workflows, and automation efficiencies.
The aim is to combine same day or optionally intraday settlement with a newly-designed centralized netting service that supports real-time netting. Both cash and securities would be digitized and the settlement service would be compatible with the current one.
The PoC used the DAML smart contract language, but the underlying ledger was not mentioned but would certainly be permissioned. By using DAML it’s possible to swap out the ledger.
The DTCC has previously published papers on the tradeoffs between instant settlement and netting, DLT security, and DLT governance.
Ethereum Developers Announced: Bad News from ETH 2.0?
Although the price of Ethereum, the second largest cryptocurrency compared to the total market value, has increased in recent days, there has been a bad event in the developments in the infrastructure.
How's your sunday going? 😅 pic.twitter.com/Nl7RbQSStg
— Afr Schoe ⚡ (@a4fri) May 17, 2020
So is this bad for Ethereum? In fact, this development shows that the test network is experiencing an unexpected split. Tyler Smith said in a statement on the subject that this is actually a very good development. Stating that the main purpose of the test networks is to detect the crises before the transition to the main network, ConsenSys official stated that they have seen a new error.
Smith, after stating that the Schlesi test net is more than necessary, hinted that this strained him and thought he would necessarily make a mistake. Indeed, the expected error appeared, and now developers can focus on solving the problem in the test network.
So this event in the Schlesi test network can actually make the network more perfect.
Author: Matthew Cagehttps://somagnews.com