The BTC taproot upgrade is here as the latest privacy-preserving upgrade for the bitcoin protocol, but what does it mean for the miners? Let’s find out more in our latest Bitcoin news today.
Miners have activated the BTC Taproot upgrade and locked in the requisite number of blocks to lock in the upgrade which obscured complicated transactions and lowers transaction fees. As it now stands, pre-Taproot, complex Bitcoin transactions add a lot of code to the ledger and are identifiable. This makes it easier to track the flow of money out of the blockchain and hike up the transaction fees. This is also not ideal for a privacy-focused payments network that is short on space.
Taproot combines complex transactions together with simple ones and makes it hard to identify the provenance of specific transactions while scrimping on the data. This also lowers transaction costs for complicated transactions. In order to implement this upgrade, 90% of the mined blocks in a two-week window have to contain a signal that they support the upgrade. As we saw today, the network hit a threshold and now Taproot will go live in November.
The BTC Taproot upgrade was proposed in 2018 by Bitcoin Core developer Gregory Maxwell who is considered to be one of the main upgrades to the blockchain in the past few years. The last major upgrade was the Segregated Witness upgrade in 2017 which eventually removed transaction data to allow blocks to handle more transactions.
As reported recently, Several Bitcoin developers have already left review comments on the Taproot upgrade and showed their enthusiasm about the new change. A key part of the proposal is Schorr, a cryptographic signature scheme for proving ownership of coins.By using Schorr, the Taproot upgrade adds smart contract capabilities to Bitcoin which would strengthen privacy. For instance, the transactions which are open and the close payment channels on the lighting network allow speedier transfers on small amounts and would not look much different from normal transactions.
Core devs said that the Taproot software update for BTC will improve privacy but according to Snowden, it doesn’t fix the biggest privacy problem of the cryptocurrency. Edward Snowden was a former National Security Agency contractor that exposed a secret surveillance program of American citizens and as one of the foremost private advocates in the world, he thinks that BTC isn’t private enough and that the upcoming software update will likely make it worse.
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