New technology solves ZEC’s problem
The inventors of ZCash chose this variant of zk-SNARKs because it is lighter and can verify transactions faster and more efficiently. “Trusted Setup” is therefore still very important today for creating zero knowledge proofs and enabling private transactions. The cryptographer Sean Bowe of Electric Coin Company (ECC) has developed a new technology called “Halo” which will allow ZCash to solve the biggest problem of the cryptocurrency: Previously, ZCash needed a trusted setup from a trusted party to confirm the zero knowledge proof. Halo could eliminate this problem by eliminating the need for a trusted party.
The Trusted setup was a highly criticized issue even before ZCash’s Genesis Block was generated, which still exists and is a single point of failure. If the setup is compromised, hackers or owners could use the keys created during Genesis block creation to control and manipulate the entire ZEC block chain.
Bowe’s new technique, published in a paper co-authored by colleagues Jack Grigg and Daira Hopwood, uses proofs to verify other proofs without the need for third parties. Halo achieves a recursive proof composition without knowledge and without the need for a trusted party.
Halo is a result of ECC’s strategic orientation, which announced at ZCon1 in June 2019 that both the security and Layer 1 scalability of ZCash would be improved. While Halo is not yet implemented, ECC has high expectations of this new technology.
The reason this setup is called “Trusted Setup” is because you have to trust that the one who generated these keys will destroy them. If they are not destroyed, the owners can manipulate the ZCash blockchain at will or create new ZECs.
Author : Jake Simmons