Back in February a new privacy white paper for the Bitcoin network called ‘Dandelion’ was published and received a lot of attention from the bitcoin community. Now the researchers and programmers involved with the idea have submitted a Bitcoin Improvement Proposal (BIP) to the bitcoin developers list for feedback and review.
A New Proposal Called ‘Dandelion’ Hopes to Redesign the Bitcoin Network for Anonymity
Dandelion is a concept designed by the Zcash advisor and developer Andrew Miller and a team of University of Illinois researchers. A few months ago the team released its white paper ‘Dandelion: Redesigning the Bitcoin Network for Anonymity.’ The project is a new type of transaction broadcasting method that aims to stop people snooping and locating Internet Protocol addresses (IP). Essentially transactions relayed to nodes go through a few hops followed by a symmetric broadcast sent to other nodes which cannot identify the original IP source.
According to the recently submitted Github proposal Dandelion works in two phases.
“[The first phase] is the “stem” phase, and then “fluff” phase,” explains the Dandelion BIP. “During the stem phase, each node relays the transaction to a *single* peer. After a random number of hops along the stem, the transaction enters the fluff phase, which behaves just like ordinary flooding/diffusion. Even when an attacker can identify the location of the fluff phase, it is much more difficult to identify the source of the stem.”
A Privacy-Enhancing Modification to Bitcoin’s Transaction Propagation
In addition to submitting the BIP to Github Dandelion’s developer Andrew Miller also wrote a letter of intent to the bitcoin developers via the Linux Foundation mailing list. Miller states the team has put together the preliminary implementations for the Dandelion BIP and he would love it if developers provided them with feedback.
Dandelion is a privacy-enhancing modification to Bitcoin’s transaction propagation mechanism. Its goal is to obscure the original source IP of each transaction.
Dandelion Is Currently Being Experimented With Via Bitcoin’s Testnet
Furthermore, Miller details the Dandelion team is experimenting with the code on the Bitcoin testnet and will report findings to the mailing list. Additionally, in comparison to the original white paper, the current BIP includes several new design features says Miller. This includes a stronger attacker model and a more robust propagation implementation.
The latest privacy enhancing BIP Dandelion comes at a time when governments everywhere are looking to enforce strict AML and KYC regulations towards bitcoin users. Many bureaucrats and law enforcement agencies have been pushing for many privacy-invasive measures and blockchain surveillance tools for quite some time. The Dandelion BIP was once again well received by many bitcoin proponents across forums and social media on June 13.
In addition to the Dandelion news, Breeze Wallet, another privacy enhancing mechanism that implements the Tumblebit protocol is rumored to be released at the end of the month.
What do you think about Dandelion proposal? Let us know in the comments below.
Images via Shutterstock, Pixabay, and the Dandelion white paper.
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