Monroe Research Lab releases latest research paper: new technology Triptych will significantly improve online anonymity

According to Cointelegraph, the Menlo Research Laboratory (MRL) published Triptych in a paper on January 6. As the core anonymity mechanism of Monero, the main purpose of this research is to significantly improve the anonymity of Monero.

40345011034_c2f8c002d4_b (Image source: flickr )

Monero (XMR) is an anonymous coin that uses multiple mechanisms to obfuscate the amount, public key, and digital signature of transactions on the chain. Among them, the main technology to prevent transactions from being traced is the ring signature technology. The ring signature algorithm, like Bitcoin, also uses a public key and private key model based on the hash value. The difference is that the ring signature technology mixes the transaction of the sender with other decoys. These decoys are semi-random Selected from other nodes of the blockchain, the above-mentioned hybrid transaction is decrypted and verified by the recipient's private key after signing, so that the outside world cannot determine who is the real transaction initiator, thus enabling Monero to achieve Ability to hide transaction sender address information. Currently, 10 real decoy transactions are mixed by default for each real transaction. Since the end of 2018, the amount of decoy transactions used by all users for transactions is fixed.

Triptych's main innovation is to make the byte size of the ring signature logarithmic to the number of decoy transactions, rather than the previous linear relationship. This will allow the Monero mainnet to significantly increase the ring size without major performance issues. Of course, the time to verify the ring signature and the number of decoy transactions remain linear. Therefore, too large a number of decoys may overwhelm nodes that verify transactions.

In a Reddit post, Saran Noether, a member of Monroe Research Labs, concluded that verifying a transaction with a mix of 511 decoys took about 45 milliseconds. According to the preliminary test results, this is equivalent to the normal single transaction verification time of the Monero network, and it also increases the number of decoy transactions by an order of magnitude.

However, Triptych is a study that has not been peer-reviewed. When Cointelegraph asked about possible time for Monero to implement the technology, Noether stated:

I cannot reasonably speculate on the possibility of the project implementing Triptych because it is still in the early stages of development and it has not undergone any formal review.

Noether also mentioned a better Triptych version that "will allow multiple key signatures in the same certificate, while also directly including the balance test, making the bytes of transactions smaller." However, due to unspecified technical issues The obstacles to this new method still need more research.

Other technologies that increase the anonymity of the Monero network

Monroe's ring size is often the subject of community criticism, and a 2017 paper claimed that some transactions could be completely deanonymized. To increase privacy, the Monroe community recommends a "hand-off" approach-sending transactions to yourself.

Based on this research work, solutions such as Lelantus, Omniring and RingCT (RingCT) have been produced. Noether says that while all of the above technologies weigh privacy and security from different perspectives, Triptych remains important to Monero:

Triptych's ability to significantly increase the size of the anonymous input set will be a big step for Monroe in the right direction.