Thursday, 14th of December 2017, 12:00 – 1:00

Anonymous alone? On the anonymity of cryptographic currencies

SR 1, ICT Building,
Technikerstraße 21a, 6020 Innsbruck

Malte Möser
PhD student in the Department of Computer Science at Princeton University and a Graduate Student Fellow at the Center for Information Technology Policy (CITP)


Cryptographic currencies like Bitcoin balance two seemingly contradictory goals: radical transparency of the ledger and anonymity of users. A variety of privacy-enhancing techniques have been developed to strengthen anonymity, yet to this day their adoption remains limited. A closer look at existing deployments shows how in practice they often fall short of their promises due to inherent complexity and dependence on user behavior. In this talk I will give examples for such failures based on recent empirical work evaluating techniques for “mixing” coins in cryptographic currencies. I’ll discuss the importance of empirical measurements and conclude with a set of privacy guidelines for cryptocurrency designers.