When it comes to privacy coins currently on the market, the two biggest contenders are ZCash (ZEC) and Monero (XMR).
Both of these cryptocurrencies have protocols that are at the cutting edge of blockchain technology. They have both proven themselves over an extended period of time and are relatively well known in the crypto ecosystem.
However, can they really be compared? And, if so, which coin affords you the most privacy?
In this post, I will try to compare the two blockchains and their supposed privacy benefits. I will also look into their mining protocols and the impact that could have on said security.
However, before we jump into a comparison, we have to take a look at the key technology driving each coin.ZCash Overview
ZCash (ZEC) was released as a Fork of Bitcoin in 2016. Hence, it shares some commonality with Bitcoin in that it is also a Proof-of-Work coin and has the same total mineable supply of 21m coins.
However, that is where the similarities end.
ZCash was specifically forked by the main developer, Zooko Wilcox, in order to be a private alternative to Bitcoin. As such, there is some pretty advanced technology that has been included in the Zcash protocol in order to facilitate this.ZCash Privacy Protocol
One of the most important privacy features on ZCash has to be it’s use of zero-knowledge proofs and its implementation in their zk-SNARKs.
A full explanation of these are is beyond the scope of this text. Yet, the basic principle of a zero-knowledge proof is being able to prove something is true without conveying anything other than it being true.
This can be particularly useful for occasions when you want to prove that you know a password or have access to a cryptocurrency’s private key without actually sending them.Example of “Proofing” Secret Data. Image Source: Medium.
Through the use of zk-SNARKs, ZCash allows the user to hide their transaction ...