Nym Technologies Releases Incentives and Integration with Bitcoin on the Liquid Network

NEUCHATEL, 11 SEPTEMBER, 2020Nym Technologies, a Swiss privacy start-up, is inviting people to join its mixnet in order to stop mass surveillance – while being paid in Bitcoin for providing their computing power to Nym. Nym is building on top of the Liquid Network for testing their mixnet reputation system and to allow users to use Bitcoin with Confidential Transactions.

A mixnet is a privacy infrastructure that provides advanced protection for any kind of internet transaction against mass surveillance. The privacy provided by the Nym mixnet can help defeat powerful NSA-level adversaries that watch the entire network, unlike VPNs and Tor.

“Nym’s mixnet technology looks promising as a modern upgrade to Tor, representing a step forward in network privacy,” said Dr. Adam Back, CEO of Blockstream. “Network privacy is a crucial component to ensuring the financial privacy of Bitcoin users, so we were very happy to collaborate with Nym on its integration with Liquid. Nym’s SOCKS5 architecture made adding Blockstream Green wallet support easy, and we’ll keep an eye on the project with a view to adding standalone support in the future.”

“We’ve had the world’s first decentralized mixnet running since last year at Chaos Computer Congress, but people across the world from Ghana to Minsk have been running mix nodes for free just because they support privacy,” said Harry Halpin, Co-Founder and CEO of Nym Technologies. “Today, we’re happy to announce we are giving back to these mix node runners by rewarding them in Bitcoin. We’ve already rewarded the nodes that have been with us the longest in cold, hard Bitcoin.”

Nym Technologies’s latest version of the mixnet includes support for SOCKS5, the same proxy protocol that Bitcoin wallets currently use to communicate with Tor. Now, users can easily replace Tor and try out the Nym mixnet, which unlike Tor mixes packets and sends fake packets to make it even harder for enemies to capture traffic. Longstanding Bitcoin wallets like Electrum support SOCKS5 proxies to talk to Tor and now Nym. However, Nym recommends people currently use Blockstream Green wallet with L-BTC (Liquid BTC) due to its on-chain privacy and Confidential Asset technology. In addition, the Nym network now tracks the reputation of mix nodes on Liquid using L-NYMPH tokens.

“We recommend using Nym with L-BTC and Blockstream Green because Bitcoin does not provide on-chain privacy, and you need both network privacy and on-chain privacy to be truly private. Blockstream Green wallet provides an easy way for users to use Bitcoin with Confidential Transactions to provide on-chain privacy for transaction amounts and works just as well with Nym as it does with Tor. If you run a mixnode, you can get as a confidential asset on Liquid the reputation score of your mix node, which is stored as L-NYMPH tokens. L-NYMPH is a valueless testnet token keeps track of how long your node has been mixing traffic for testing purposes. Separately, the Nym mixnet pays in real money, Bitcoin, for providing computing services as a mix node.” Halpin continues.

The Nym testnet will continue to roll out in phases, as it needs more users and more testing before it is ready to take on NSA-level adversaries. Now that rewards in Bitcoin for mixing are up and running along with a reputation system for mix nodes, the next and final phase of the testnet is to allow the mixnet to dynamically grow in response to user demand and mixnode bandwidth capacity by leveraging reputation.

The next phase will be revealed in a month at Hackers Congress (HCPP) October 2nd-4th 2020 in Paralelní Polis, Prague. In the mean time, every week Nym will announce new Bitcoin bounties and applications that support Nym.

“In the long-run, we want to provide network privacy to all applications. We’re starting with Bitcoin because it’s the best store of value. We talked to others, including the Ethereum and ZCash Foundation, and they either don’t understand or don’t want to confront powerful adver-saries that can monitor the entire network yet. They also don’t even have working wallets that support Tor properly, as we learned from massive user testing. In contrast, the professionals at Blockstream have been working for privacy and freedom for many years, maintain a SOCKS5 wallet, understand mixnets, and have provided great support for Nym when we started integrating with the Liquid Network and Blockstream Green.”

To install the software to run a mix-node, follow the instructions online on Nym’s website: https://nymtech.net/docs/mixnet/installation/. If there are any questions, join the encrypted chat channel https://keybase.io/team/nymtech.friends using the Keybase app or follow us on Twitter (https://twitter.com/nymproject) or join the Telegram channel (https://t.me/nymchan). We also have a WeChat channel for Chinese language information.

About Nym Technologies
Nym is a start-up that is solving the internet’s unprecedented privacy crisis by creating a decentralized infrastructure to keep your communications private. Made up of a team of expert privacy researchers and programmers, Nym irreversibly hides patterns and metadata in internet traffic, keeping your internet connection secure and private.

About the Liquid Network
The Liquid Network is a sidechain-based settlement network for traders and exchanges, enabling faster, more confidential Bitcoin transactions and the issuance of digital assets. The Liquid Network is operated and managed by its federated members, ensuring the system has no single point of failure. Learn how to get access to the future of digital asset finance at liquid.net.