On-chain tracking of Monero and other Cryptonotes


I saw my previous medium post linked on this forum (and since I’m steadily more and more excluded from Monero channels) I decided to post my research here.

For disclosure, I am part of a smaller Cryptonote coin.

Enjoy! If you have any technical questions I’m happy to answer.


You seriously got banned from the Monero Channel for researching a weakness in the XMR/Cryptonote Privacy Protocol(s)???

Yup, see the last picture here: How buying pot with Monero will get you busted — Knacc attack on Cryptonote coins | by Ryo Cryptocurrency | Medium

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I’m surprised by this as well, I know that the Monero Community does have a series called “Breaking Monero” which explores potential weaknesses in the protocol to educate users. I would think this kind of research would be of interest to Justin Ehernhofer @sgp and Sarang Noether from the MRL.

Similar to how Zcash received a lot of criticism for the original parameter generation ceremony, as a result they worked hard to make a bigger better one. The Zcash Foundation has also funded further research into how users interact with t and z addresses in light of research about transaction linkability released last year.

What do you hope to accomplish by posting here @fireice_uk ? Looking for feedback from Zcash scientists?


I’m looking to bring those issues to people’s attention - and for feedback from anyone interested.

I’m a bit peeved off that they ran an episode on temporal tracing without citing my work, but what’s done is done.

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I see. You also mentioned that you are involved with another cryptonote based currency, does it have these same issues?

Yes, this is common to all cryptonote based currencies (as the headline says).

I appreciate the pragmatism, but this is not the case. I do not wish to bring more drama here, but fireice was banned by unanimous decision from the @monero Telegram group for their hostile comments and constantly referencing their altcoin. They were removed as a moderator from r/MoneroMining since they consistently broke the subreddit’s rules. These actions have absolutely no connection to research evaluating Monero’s weaknesses. I encourage it heavily, as you pointed out with my Breaking Monero series and the several published MRL papers that speak about Monero past and current weaknesses.

This specific post is nearly controversy-free, as I pointed out here. It is certainly their best article so far by some margin, and it is currently visible in r/Monero. However, the author nevertheless insists on using this research piece to the different end of claiming most people in the Monero community are against research suggesting there are limitations. This is not the case.

In regards to this specific blog post, it indeed provides a good high-level view over some of the considerations of churning. Churning may have severe consequences if done incorrectly. We absolutely need more eyes looking into possible information leaks when churning, just as Zcash solicited my opinion and the opinion of others in designing a turnstile migration guide.


On cryptonote and all it’s different variations like Heavy, Light V7, whatever, there are shitload of projects on. I guess around 120-140 Projects/Coins all over on the various Cryptonotes/Cryptonite algo…

Out of curiousity i readed about 2-3 months the fireice comments/posts back on the reddit monero channel.
My subjective impressions is that the moderation there looks hostile to critical views there. A lot of toxity there and i personally never would stay with such community to be honest.

I was able to track a single post down where he/she (fireice) mentioned ryo currency ( i guess that’s the project he/she is involved) and that after being asked if they have the same problem like Monero. I don’t think this should be a big deal. Projects on the same algo should work together and i never have seen hostility on Zcash forum towards other projects on equihash like KMD, ZEN, whatever when they are mentioned, compared and so on. Thumbs up to the ZEC Forum moderation at this point!

You guys at the Monero channels/forums should have kept this guy fireice better. Critical views, at least in my opinion, contribute a lot to the community, no matter this might contain unpopular views or is unpopular by the majority of the community.


Thank you for the context @sgp , it’s obvious that there is some history of disagreement between @fireice_uk and the Monero community. I’m not here to pass judgement on who is “right” one way or another.

As far as I’m concerned many from the Monero community and other coins can also be part of the Zcash community. I think we have more to gain by working together than fighting each other.

If fireice wants to try to use this forum as “neutral ground” to have open discussion about Zcash weaknesses or Monero weaknesses than I don’t have any issues as long as everyone is respectful to each other.

What I don’t want @boxalex is to devolve the discussion into things that happened or didn’t happen on other platforms. Bickering about moderation policy and decisions made elsewhere are off-topic here.


I was asking about that because since OP is part of another coin (and is publishing information about weaknesses in it and Monero) they may have solutions/ideas about how to fix these issues that Monero and other projects could learn from.

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