Anonymizing Your Staking Rewards With RingCT 👤
Particl is proud to announce the release of a private cold staking script on Github. This script is intended to be executed on staking nodes as a companion to the Partyman cold staking application, but can also be executed without Partyman being installed on the node. In that case, Partyman will automatically be installed to the latest version by the Private Cold Staking script.
Note: Partyman is the application required to create and run a cold staking node on the Particl network. Follow this tutorial to learn how to install and use it so that you can safely cold stake your funds.
This script allows you to anonymize automatically your coldstaking rewards on your node and to redirect them…github.com
To install directly on your staking node, type the following commands:
cd ~ && git clone https://github.com/GBen1/Private-Coldstaking.git
cd Private-Coldstaking && bash privatecoldstaking.sh
PPoS — A Security-Focused Proof-of-Stake Protocol
Particl Proof-of-Stake (PPoS) is Particl’s very own and super secure Proof-of-Stake algorithm. In fact, it is one of the most secure PoS algorithms in the blockchain space due to its cold staking capabilities.
For those not familiar with it, cold staking allows you to delegate the staking weight of your funds to a node which contains no coin, meaning that the wallet that actually holds the coins can be taken offline and still contribute to securing the Particl network (and receive staking rewards for it). What makes the cold staking capabilities of PPoS even more secure is the fact that it can be used in combination with a hardware wallet like a Ledger Nano S device, for example, bringing its level of security to an absurdly high level.
One thing Particl Proof-of-Stake does not do, however, is private/stealth staking. In other words, you can only stake funds held in public balances, but not in blind or anon balances. But considering the great privacy protocols available on the Particl network (Confidential Transactions (CT) and RingCT), there really shouldn’t be any reason why staking privately shouldn’t be possible.
Why isn’t PPoS Private by Default in the First Place?
As the previous section of this blog post mentions, PPoS is a security-focused Proof-of-Stake protocol, meaning security comes first before anything else. After all, PoS protocols are what’s responsible for the verification of transactions and the creation of coins on the network. If something goes wrong here, it can spell a lot of troubles for the chain.
The main issue with a fully private Proof-of-Stake protocol is auditability. In fact, while it could be proven without a doubt that the inflation model is fine (you can prove the right amount of coins is being created at the right time, and you can detect if an exploit if being used to create a fraudulent amount of coins at the inflation level), it’s not possible, however, to detect some edge cases where an attacker would be able to create coins out of thin air without issuing them through the usual inflation process.
Note that Proof-of-Work coins with a “private by default” approach to mining, such as Monero, are also vulnerable to this issue. This isn’t a vulnerability that is exclusive to Proof-of-Stake. At this point, there has been a few instances of inflation-related attacks, notably in regards to the Zerocoin protocol (Zerocoin, PIVX, Veil, etc) which had to be disabled on the affected coins. There has been a similar bug on Monero and some of its forks which would have allowed an attacker to create an unlimited amount of coins without ever being able to detect it. Luckily, this has never been exploited and the bug has been fixed a long time before. Imagine thousands upon thousands of coins being generated out of thin air without anyone being able to detect it…
Making Cold Staking Private Without the Security Concessions
But, again, considering the great privacy protocols available on the Particl network (Confidential Transactions (CT) and RingCT), there really shouldn’t be any reason why staking privately shouldn’t be possible. And this is where the Private Cold Staking script comes into action.
The Private Cold Staking script is a script coded by Particl’s Community Manager, Guillaume Benayoun. It allows you to automatically anonymize your staking rewards using RingCT. This means you can now safely cold stake your coins and remain anonymous on the network.
Because the script doesn’t operate at the protocol level, it can provide a very powerful level of privacy without compromising on the security side of things. To be clear, with this script, Particl Proof-of-Stake remains untouched. The privacy aspect of things is granted by the Private Cold Staking script itself.
What it Can and Can’t Do
The Private Cold Staking script is intended to be used as a companion tool to the Partyman cold staking app. It has to be used directly on your cold staking node and uses entropy to obfuscate patterns, thus increasing the level of privacy. This script allows you to do three things:
- Automatically anonymize your staking rewards and send them to a public address of your choice
- Automatically anonymize your staking rewards and send them to a blind (CT) address of your choice
- Automatically anonymize your staking rewards and send them to an anon (RingCT) address of your choice
The Private Cold Staking cannot, however, stake funds held on stealth addresses (blind or anon balances).
Note: Due to the nature of the script, a few coins will be held on your cold staking node for a small amount of time (under 24 hours). It is not recommended to use this script if your staking environment isn’t safe (i.e. shared computer, untrustworthy VPS, etc).
How to Use the Private Cold Staking Script
- Download the script on your cold staking node
cd ~ && git clone https://github.com/GBen1/Private-Coldstaking.git
- Navigate to the script’s directory
- Execute the script and go through the setup process
- Make sure everything is set up properly
- If you wish to uninstall the script, run the uninstaller
For more information, refer directly to the script’s README file on Github.
The Private Cold Staking script takes Particl Proof-of-Stake to the next level by enabling solid privacy options without sacrificing any of its security. It is directly in line with Particl’s commitment to both security and privacy. Since it will create more anon outputs that can then be used by the network to better anonymize other RingCT transactions, it directly contributes to improving the overall privacy of the network.
So what are you waiting for? Time to protect your finances and reclaim your privacy! 💪