24 Oct '13, 4pm

Who’s Who in Bitcoin: Zerocoin Hero Matthew Green

has been called “cash with wings,” but does it really live up to this name? Cash is the most anonymous form of payment we have today, and thus it provides for two things: First, when you hand a dollar to someone, your identity doesn’t matter and it’s not needed to verify the authenticity of the transaction. Second, you can be nearly certain no one is tracking where that dollar was before you had it and where it will end up down the line. But Bitcoin possesses only one of these features. Each time the network processes a transaction, it identifies the users with a string of letters and numbers—their Bitcoin “addresses”—rather than using real names. In this way, the Bitcoin protocol itself couldn’t care less who you are. But what about tracking coins? Not only does Bitcoin track and record the spending history for every little scrap of the currency, but it’s a fundamental ch...

Full article: http://spectrum.ieee.org/computing/networks/whos-who-in-b...

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