Did you know that many cryptocurrencies out there that actually claim to be sufficiently private are not as private as they say?
I had listed down a few cryptocurrencies in my previous write-up that claim to provide transactional privacy to its users and have also tried to give you an insight into their respective offerings.
However, there are more than 10 cryptocurrencies working on private and anonymous transactions but I have deliberately mentioned only a few of them in the aforementioned article.
I have done so because I think as of today these are the only ones worth noticing. But you never know when a new crypto, in this crazy cryptosphere, might come and join their ranks. And that’s why exactly I will keep updating my picks.
One of the cryptocurrencies that I personally like and have mentioned too in the above article is Zcoin, also known as XZC or Zerocoin. I know some of you might think that I am saying so because I am heavily invested in this coin but actually that’s not the reason.
I am interested in this coin because of its underlying tech which made me like it and that’s the very reason I am here talking to you about it.
In this fundamental analysis of Zcoin, I will cover the following salient points about Zcoin:
- What is Zcoin?
- How does Zcoin work?
- Zcoin’s Vision
- The Zcoin Team
- Total Zcoin supply
- Market cap of Zcoin
- How to buy Zcoin cryptocurrency
- Zcoin wallets
- Zcoin’s future and Roadmap
- Some Zcoin misconceptions
- Official Zcoin resources
Let’s get started…
What is Zcoin?
Zcoin, also known as XZC or Zerocoin, is an open source decentralized cryptocurrency that focuses on achieving privacy and anonymity for its users while transacting.
To achieve this privacy and anonymity, Zcoin uses zero-knowledge proofs via Zerocoin protocol which is one of the most cited cryptography papers at this point in time.
In cryptography, a zero-knowledge proof or zero-knowledge protocol is a method by which one party (the prover) can prove to another party (the verifier) that a given statement is true, without conveying any information apart from the fact that the statement is indeed true.
In other words, when you transact using Bitcoin or Ethereum or something similar, your transaction history is always linked to your coins by default which makes you vulnerable. That, because all it takes is one link to your personal information or IP to find out the origin of the coins.
However, if you transact using Zcoin’s Zercoin feature, none of your transaction histories is linked to the actual coins and only the receiver and sender know that you have actually exchanged funds.
Keeping that in mind, let us see how this cryptographic wonder works in Zcoin.
How does Zcoin Work?
Zcoin works on Zerocoin protocol by enforcing Zero-knowledge proofs. Here is a short introductory video of Zcoin that explains how it works under the hood.
Mint: When you want to send a private transaction with Zcoin all you need to do is select the number of coins you want to mint. Post that your normal Zcoin balance would automatically reduce and you will be credited with new coins with no transaction history. Basically, your old coins are burned cryptographically, thus preventing anyone else from using it again and being directed to your transaction history. The fact that you are credited with new coins with no history is maintained, and so is the total supply.
As of now, you can mint only in denominations of 1, 10, 25, 50 and 100. Let us suppose you choose ‘100’ coins to be minted. You will automatically be credited with new 100 Zcoins with no history attached to it.
- Spend: And now when you want to make a private transaction you will be required to use these ‘100’ minted new coins. You can now send any amount from this pool of fund in any denomination to anyone with anonymity because there is no history attached to it.
- Repeat: And the same way you can ‘mint’ and ‘send’ Zcoins in any number anytime with your privacy intact.
I have tried to explain this in a very simple way but the actual technology is quite complex. If you wish to deep dive into it, here is the link.
Zcoin aims to improve things that Bitcoin couldn’t do so far, namely fungibility, privacy and miner’s centralization.
Zcoin will provide full fungibility and privacy to its users along with demolishing miner’s centralization by implementing a better proof of work algorithm called MTP about which I will talk further in this article.
Zerocoin is a cryptocurrency proposed by Johns Hopkins University professor Matthew D. Green and graduate students Ian Miers and Christina Garman as an extension to the Bitcoin protocol that would add true cryptographic anonymity to Bitcoin transactions.
Zerocoin was first implemented into a fully functional cryptocurrency released to the public by Poramin Insom, as Zcoin who is also the lead developer, in September 2016.
Some of the notable dev members of the team are listed below.
Apart from this, their team comprises of other developers, community managers, support personnel and advisors who maintain the required balance.
Total Zcoin supply
The total number of Zcoin to ever be produced is 21 million units. At present, there are approx. 3.4 million units in circulation and rest units yet to be mined.
But the total supply has increased by 388450 XZC units after the Zcoin’s code bug, which the team has not rolled back due to economic reasons hence the total supply stands at 21.4 million approximately.
Also, every 10 minutes, a Zcoin block is mined, and 50 coins are generated, which makes it 72,00 Zcoins per day.
Market cap of Zcoin
According to CoinMarketCap, the total circulating supply of Zcoin is 5,757,841 XZC, and the current price of each unit is $9.6. That makes its market cap approximately $55 million (at the time of this article).
How to buy Zcoin cryptocurrency
I am sure some of you would like to get HODL of some Zcoin units after reading its USPs. That’s why here is the list of resources from where you can buy some Zcoins for yourself.
- Binance-Supported pairs are XZC/BTC, XZC/ETH, XZC/BNB
- Huobi-Supported pairs are XZC/BTC, XZC/ETH
- Bittrex-Supported pairs are XZC/BTC
- Cryptopia-Supported pairs are XZC/BTC, XZC/LTC, XZC/DOGE
- CoinExchange-Supported pairs are XZC/BTC
- LiteBit.eu-Supported pairs are XZC/EUR
Note: Buying XZC in fiat currencies such as USD, EUR, or GBP is quite difficult right now.
Not many wallet options are available for Zcoin but for early adopters like you and me, there are sufficient wallet options to keep your coins safe.
- Mobile Wallets – Coinomi (Android, iOS), Edge (Android, iOS)
- Browser/Web Wallets – Electrum Light Wallet
- Desktop Wallets – Zcoin’s official GUI Wallet (Windows, Linux, Mac)
- Hardware Wallets-Ledger Nano S, Trezor
Some Zcoin misconceptions
There are some misconceptions regarding Zcoins too.
- They have a trusted setup that allows minting of coins indefinitely and hence it is not safe, but that is not true. Of course to begin with they had to do the trusted setup way but because they have an auditable total coin supply preventing any form of cheating. This downside, however, is being taken care of by its dev team by removing this trusted setup in the near future and when that happens Zcoin will be one of the serious coins to count on for privacy.
- Also, they are often considered as Zcash’s fork but that is also not true because Zcash is based on Zerocash protocol whereas Zcoin was started from scratch by applying Zerocoin tech.
Now that I have cleared some of the Zcoin’s misconceptions it is time, that we look into its future.
Zcoin’s future and Roadmap
Zcoin’s future is quite promising and worth watching because of the following reasons and interesting things on their roadmap:
- Zcoin is the first coin to implement MTP proof of work type which makes it possible for general masses to mine Zcoin with GPUs and CPUs. MTP doesn’t allow ASIC like costly miners to mine XZC coins. See this video to understand more about its features.
- Zcoin is also implementing Znodes to make their cryptocurrency more decentralized and anonymous. These Znodes would be like masternodes and will facilitate anonymous transactions because making an anonymous transaction single-handedly is quite computational. See more about Znodes here.
- Znodes will be incentivized by reducing some portion of the founder’s reward. Also, the surplus funds that get generated from the founder’s reward reduction would be used for hiring new developers and increased marketing efforts.
- Another agenda on their roadmap is to bring inbuilt Tor or some IP obfuscation mechanism that will make it completely anonymous.
- Apart from these, some of the innovative and exciting stuff that is on their roadmap makes this project worth looking at once. Namely, they are sigma protocol, decentralized anonymous voting and Zcoin Labs etc.
- Last but not least, its recent price really is a good indicator of its healthy market sentiments and shows that there are people who understand this project’s worth. Just to put things in perspective so that you can understand what I am saying – a unit of Zcoin was priced $2 in this March 2017 and now it is $37 where the year-end is yet to come.
And with this phenomenal growth stats, I will leave it to you to see it for yourself based on all the insights I have given above to judge if this project is worth your time or not.
And if you ask me, I will certainly say it is worth my time and that is why I am writing about it. 🙂
Update: Zcoin Integrates Dandelion-Dandelion provides network privacy that further conceals the IP address of someone broadcasting a transaction.
Official Zcoin resources
Some official links that will help you to be updated with Zcoin’s news:-
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A team of Blockchain and Cryptocurrency experts lead by Harsh Agrawal. Trusted by over 1.1 million readers worldwide.