Bitcoin was all fun and games until a bunch of so-called computer geniuses realized their dark web drug deals could be easily traced. Bitocin is psuedonymous, but because it’s not fully anonymous, researchers have been digging into a massive archive of data for the past decade and tracing people in ways we should have thought possible (some of us did) at the start.
While regulators around the world scramble to put legislation in place to stop private transactions, the developers of these 10 privacy coins are still hard at work protecting our rights to financial privacy.
Monero is perhaps the most popular privacy coin, and its rabid anti-censorship community keeps it decentralized. An obfuscated public ledger and CryptoNight mining make it a privacy-centric cryptocurrency to compete with.
Verge gained mainstream attention for a partnership with MindGeek, which is the parent company for a slew of popular adult sites. The porn industry made VHS, Blu-Ray, and the Internet itself popular. It’s doing the same for cryptocurrency.
Komodo is a complete cryptocurrency finance platform that was initially named Bitcoin Dark. That name seemed to ominous, so it rebranded with the same goals of creating a secure digital finance platform. This includes psuedonyms galore and E2E encryption.
Bytecoin is one of the earliest altcoins, created all the way back in 2012. This is why it has such a strong following, even though you never heard of it. Also, it’s the first CryptoNote coin that pushes to maintain ASIC resistance.
Zcoin was the first Zerocash coin to hit the market, although it since migrated to zkSNARKz and, more recently, Sigma. These protocol improvements make Zcoin a hot topic among crypto fanatics moving into 2020. Here’s a deeper analysis of Zcoin we did at Thought for Your Penny.
Zcash is the privacy coin originally called Zerocoin and using the Zerocash privacy algorithm. The team is now competing with Zcoin for marketshare. The community is somewhat divided as to which of these privacy coin projects is the “best.”
Horizen focuses on TLS end-to-end encryption to create a secure platform made for all things privacy. Originally called ZenCash, it also has a decentralized autonomous organization (DAO), private messenger (ZenChat), anonymous publishing platform (ZenPub), and a TOR-like enpoint masking network (ZenHide). Think of it as your one-stop anonymity shop.
Grin is an anarchist-focused cryptocurrency dedicated to the ideals of Bitcoin that some activists and hackers initially had. Don’t let its cute branding and counterculture leanings fool you. This is a serious cryptocurrency with serious tech under the hood.
Privacy Instant Verification Transaction (PIVX) is another Zerocoin cryptocurrency that’s focused entirely on private transactions. It includes a decentralized exchange to make it easy to “launder” cryptocurrencies through the PIVX network, making it a handy currency to keep around if you travel a lot.
Aeon takes privacy a step further with a mobile-focused solution. It uses a CryptoNight-Lite mining algorithm that can even be mined with consumer equipment. On top of this, it uses ring signatures and to make a faster version of Monero. With mobile payments growing in popularity, we can expect this coin to take off.