A $100 Twitter Bounty Just Showed That ZCash Can be Cracked Easily

Zcash, a popular cryptocurrency network widely recognized as a privacy-focused coin with its Zero-Knowledge proof technology, may not be as private as it describes itself, with researchers now able to crack the network and reveal shielded transaction information.

Discussions flagging Zcash as privacy flawed have been flooding Twitter lately. And in efforts to prove the authenticity of the privacy feature of ZCash, a fan of the project challenged the accusers to prove their claims by tracing an anonymous Zcash transaction that he made.  

He provided the tx-id of his donation and dared people claiming ZCash is vulnerable to being cracked to trace his T-address within 72 hours if they were actually sure of themselves. 

As shown above, he promised to reward whoever traces the T-address within the specified period a reward of $100 of currency of the person’s choice; otherwise, he would be led to believe the privacy flawed Zcash tweets are mere false information.

However, a Twitter user, Bryan Deep, replied to the tweet within 48 hours and provided the link tracing the shielded ZCash transaction back to his T-address.

Although the uncovering of the transaction details came as shock to other users, it adds to the growing mountain of proof that the privacy coin may not really be private.

More recently, Blockchain analytics firm, Chainalysis, added support for tracing ZCash. 

Zero-knowledge proof?

ZCash’s development team claims that the cryptocurrency is based on Zero-knowledge proof technology. In other words, data of transactions made on ZCash will be validated without revealing information about the amount and the parties involved, by means of the specific Zero-Knowledge proofs they claim to be using.

This seems to have boosted the popularity of ZCash as a privacy-focused coin. But unfortunately, the reported event and Chainalysis’s recent support may have just proven that the cryptocurrency is not as private as it claims to be.

It also could see more privacy proven cryptocurrencies like Monero (XMR) continue to lead the privacy-pack.