Zcash Z transactions really private?

What are the thoughts on this article?

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Right off the bat…no link to the whitepaper making these claims. No proof of work. It’s hard to take something seriously when there’s zero effort put into sourcing the claim in the article.

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I’d love to know what type of zcash transactions they “traced” from beginning to end.
If they were entirely transparent, what a joke.
If they always had the same amounts or returned through the same transparent addresses, what a joke.

Sounds more like Monero shilling than anything else. Monero is cool. I like it. People need to stop pretending it’s the second coming of crypto jesus.

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Not only is that article inaccurate, they didn’t even bother linking to the whitepaper or the software they are talking about.

So here you go: https://github.com/citp/BlockSci

That software works with any Bitcoin like Transparent ledger and because Zcash has both Public and Private transactions they are able to apply that software to the Public transactions only.

Here is what that whitepaper says about Zcash:

Cryptocurrencies that introduce changes to the script operations may be supported only partially. Namecoin is supported, but the new script types it introduces are not parsed by BlockSci (the user can parse them with a few lines of code). Zcash is also supported, at least to the extent that Zcash blockchain analysis is even possible: it introduces a complex script that includes zero-knowledge proofs, but these aspects are parceled away in a special type of address that is not publicly legible by design

Dash’s PrivateSend uses CoinJoin-style mixing, whereas Monero uses mixing based on ring signatures and Zcash provides cryptographic untraceability, which is a stronger (and provable) anonymity property.

So they didn’t even get close to breaking Zcashs Private transactions. And with the recent advancements in the speed of the protocol it is just a matter of time before Zcash eliminates the Public transactions all together.

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@shawn What do you mean exactly by "with the recent advancements in the speed of the protocol it is just a matter of time before Zcash eliminates the Public transactions all together. ’ - zcash is planning on getting rid of t addresses ?

This is not entirely surprising. Considering the whole point of Zcash has been the privacy of shielded addresses. The biggest issue was how resource intensive using shielded addresses is/was. Now that this won’t be an issue once Sapling hits, it makes sense to move away from public transactions.

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With an order of magnitude reduction of CPU requirements, and two orders of magnitude reduction of RAM requirements, shielded transactions will be easily made on mobile devices, and perhaps even sophisticated (expensive) hardware wallets.

Add delegated proving for inexpensive hardware wallets, viewing keys/selective disclosure for those who need it, shielded multisig (crossing fingers here), and… can you think of any further use case for t-addresses?

From the outset, the t-address thing was savvy for another reason: Almost drop-in Bitcoin compatibility. To many early adopters, including service providers and hardware vendors who need to make an upfront investment to support a new cryptocurrency, Zcash could be just another altcoin. Due in large part to ease of adoption, now as of this moment, Zcash has over a $600 million market cap. People and companies who work with cryptocurrency will have a clear business incentive to work with it going forward, even if that requires a bigger effort post-Sapling. Thus t-addresses will no longer be needed for this reason, either.

And if t-addresses become unnecessary, it will be time to consider them harmful. The anonymity set right now is pretty good; but raising it to all transactions would obviously make it better. Moreover, from a public relations perspective, removing transparent transactions would stop much FUD. Including the misleading article linked at the top of this thread.

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Coinbase transaction should still be paid to transparent addresses for accurate monitoring of the total supply, IMO.