Zerocoin: Anonymous Distributed E-Cash from Bitcoin


April 24, 2013


Matthew Green


Johns Hopkins University


Bitcoin is the first e-cash system to see widespread adoption. While Bitcoin offers the potential for new types of financial interaction, it has significant limitations regarding privacy. Specifically, because the Bitcoin transaction log is completely public, users’ privacy is protected only through the use of pseudonyms. In this talk we discuss Zerocoin, a cryptographic extension to Bitcoin that augments the protocol to allow for fully anonymous currency transactions. Our system uses standard cryptographic assumptions and does not introduce new trusted parties or otherwise change the security model of Bitcoin. We detail Zerocoin’s cryptographic construction, its integration into Bitcoin, and examine its performance both in terms of computation and impact on the Bitcoin protocol.


Matthew Green

Matthew Green is a research professor at Johns Hopkins University. His research focuses on applied cryptography and the ways cryptography can be used to promote user privacy.