On February 1, the Aztec protocol has launched officially on the Ethereum blockchain. It uses Zcash (ZEC)-based technology and has confidential tokens for cryptographically hidden amounts.
At the moment, the network’s deployment is limited because it supports only zkDai, which is a Maker stablecoin private version. There are other zero-knowledge tokens to be released during the following weeks. Full access to customization of created tokens is going to be given in 2 months, says the company.
Aztec Protocol Validates Encrypted Transactions
The Aztec protocol is similar to the Zcash (ZEC) one, which means it uses Zk-SNARKs for validating encrypted transactions. Whenever a transfer is generated, a proof of correctness is too, while the amount of the transaction is encrypted.
The system is based on the Cryptography Engine smart contract from Aztec, which is also used for validating transactions. When it comes to the contract, this is based on a “notes system”, notes that are mostly used in a Bitcoin (BTC)-like structure as far as inputs and outputs go.
However, Aztec is different from Zcash in the sense that for now, it doesn’t hide information about the senders and recipients of transactions. However, it’s similar to Zcash because it needs a trusted setup to be conducted, a setup that consists of a key requirement for all the zk-SNARK implementations while generating some common parameters for more efficient computation.
Smart Contracts More Private in the Future
Aztec’s main purpose is to bring the “Triptych of Privacy” to everyone, which would hide a portion of the Ethereum blockchain completely. This is what Thomas Walton-Pocock, the CEO of Aztec had to say about this year’s further developments at the company:
“Our priority is to deploy PLONK to ACE in 2020. PLONK is the superfast Universal SNARK developed by AZTEC CTO Zac Williamson and AZTEC Chief Scientist Ariel Gabizon, which will eventually allow private smart contracts to execute with just one trusted setup.”
It looks like the next step is hiding senders and recipients, only for smart contracts to become 100% private.