Back in the early days of Bitcoin (BTC), it was widely believed that Bitcoin was an anonymous cryptocurrency. People believed you could use it to buy illicit products and services on the dark web without it ever being traced back to them.
Even today, many people who are unfamiliar with Bitcoin and cryptocurrency, think that it’s an anonymous, private, and untraceable cryptocurrency.
However, this is simply not the case. Bitcoin is pseudonymous, meaning that while the identity of a particular Bitcoin address is private, all transactions tied to that address can be seen and tracked on the public Bitcoin blockchain. Therefore, your identity can be discovered by analyzing transactions on the blockchain to see where/who you’ve been transacting with.
For instance, if you send Bitcoin to an exchange that’s gathered KYC information, then it's possible that your Bitcoin address is no longer private and you have been identified. Also, if you transact with someone’s address who’s already been identified, then there’s a connection between you and them and can you could potentially be identified through the person you’ve transacted with.
All in all, Bitcoin lacks privacy and there are many people who view this as a fundamental flaw. However, for all of the privacy enthusiasts out there, the crypto market does have privacy coins, and the first private and untraceable cryptocurrency ever to be created is called Bytecoin (BCN).
In the following article, I provide a comprehensive and subjective look at Bytecoin (BCN) so that you can fundamentally understand what it is and see the value proposition of BCN. I delve into its unique characteristics, its history, purpose, partnerships, as well as its issues and controversies surrounding it.
So buckle up and enjoy this comprehensive guide to understanding the first-ever privacy coin – Bytecoin (BCN).
History of Bytecoin (BCN)
Bytecoin is one of the earliest developed cryptocurrencies as it was created in 2012 by an anonymous team of privacy enthusiasts and launched in 2014.
Like Bitcoin, Bytecoin is a peer-to-peer (p2p) payment system built with blockchain technology. However, unlike Bitcoin, Bytecoin provides its users with anonymous transactions and privacy by using CryptoNote ring signatures and stealth addresses.
It is the first cryptocurrency to implement privacy-enabling technology and is the predecessor to Monero, which is actually a fork of Bytecoin. It also precedes other privacy coins such as ZCash, Dash and all others.
However, while Bytecoin is the first privacy coin, it isn’t as popular or successful as its fork Monero and other privacy coins based on Bytecoin’s technology. This is largely due to controversies surrounding Bytecoin’s mysterious history; wherein 2014, it was discovered that over 80 percent of BCN was already pre-mined by the developers long before the project officially launched.
This centralist discovery made Monero the privacy coin of choice, even though Bytecoin was the first to market and had the largest following.
Today, Bytecoin remains in the top 100 cryptocurrencies and is currently ranked 71. It still has a solid and devoted following that should keep it relevant for years to come.
The maximum supply of Bytecoin is 184,470,000,000 BCN and the total and circulating supply is 184,066,828,814 BCN.
Purpose of Bytecoin (BCN)
Bytecoin aims to develop a new financial system that’s more efficient than the existing ones. In other words, it has the same goals as Bitcoin but also aims to improve upon many of the issues that have surfaced with Bitcoin – specifically those surrounding privacy. Beyond that, Bytecoin strives to be more scalable and flexible to the ever-changing crypto ecosystem.
Key features and attributes of Bytecoin:
Bytecoin is Decentralized
Bytecoin operates on decentralized blockchain technology that’s operated by a multitude of nodes located around the world. Also, Bytecoin has open-source code so that anyone can take part in the network development of Bytecoin.
Payments are Untraceable
Bytecoin implements ring signature technology to mix different outputs of similar value into one transaction, resulting in robust and completely anonymous payments. On Bytecoin’s blockchain, all addresses are obscured so it is extremely difficult or impossible to perform identifying blockchain analytics.
Transactions and addresses are unlinkable
In Bytecoin, linking transactions through blockchain analytics is impossible because users are provided with multiple one-time addresses derived from their public key. Therefore, no one can see the payments you receive and no one can determine how much you’ve transacted and who’ve you transacted with.
Bytecoin is Scalable
Bytecoin has a flexible blockchain with no hard-coded constraints, meaning it can readjust the difficulty with every block to react to changes in the network’s hash rate. Therefore, it adapts to the network state and capabilities, allowing it to run smoothly and efficiently.
Bytecoin is Omnipresent
Bytecoin has a solid and devoted following that ensures the project grows and continues development. Bytecoin has a growing ecosystem of partners, integrators, merchants, and mining pools that make BCN available worldwide.
All in all, by encompassing all of these key features and attributes, Bytecoin hopes to develop a new and efficient financial system with privacy and freedom built into its foundation.
Bytecoin (BCN) Issues and Controversies
Bytecoin has been shrouded in controversy that goes back to its early beginnings in 2012. Back then, the Bytecoin blockchain allegedly began pre-mining Bytecoin where they pre-mined 151 billion of the 184 billion possible coins.
To make matters worse, Bytecoin’s founders are anonymous and the cryptocurrency itself is untraceable and private. So there was no way of knowing what these founders were up to and what their intentions were.
In 2014, Riccardo Spagni the creator of Monero, which is a fork of Bytecoin and rival privacy coin, made Bytecoin’s pre-mining controversy publicly known. He posted threads on Reddit and people became aware of Bytecoin’s shady past. Now, Bytecoin only has a market cap of $71.9 million and Monero’s market cap is over $1 billion.
Therefore, Bytecoin’s shady beginnings have forever shrouded the coin in controversy and it is unlikely to ever surpass Monero’s market share because of it.
Bytecoin (BCN) Partnerships and Adoption
Despite Bytecoin’s controversial history, the privacy coin has still managed to outperform most other cryptocurrencies as it currently ranks 70 out of more than 3000 cryptocurrencies on CoinMarketCap.
However, Bytecoin has failed to gain widespread adoption on the dark web, a marketplace where you would expect privacy coins to thrive. In fact, research and dark web analytics have shown that the majority of dark web transactions are with Bitcoin, not privacy coins.
That being said, Bytecoin has a healthy and growing ecosystem of other services and marketplaces such as exchanges, wallets, merchants, media outlets, block explorers, and gambling applications.
See below, the vast Bytecoin ecosystem:
- Best Rate
- Bytecoin Web Wallet
Media Partners and Resources:
- Live Bitcoin News
- Bitcoin Garden
- Criptomoedas Facil
- Domaine de Cromey
- Manta Medya
- Sheldon Store
- Dukley hotel & resort
- Gemma LED
- Star Brite Car Wash
- RPM Accessories
- Official Block Explorer
Bytecoin (BCN) Competitors
People involved with cryptocurrency are generally privacy advocates. They value their privacy, understand its importance, and see its potential when applied to cryptocurrencies. Therefore, the crypto market has a multitude of privacy coins competing to be number 1.
Back in the day, (early 2014) the number 1 privacy coin was Bytecoin (BCN). However, it has since fallen down the ranks, as so many altcoins do through time. Now, the number 1 privacy coin, as well as Bytecoin’s biggest competitor, is Monero (XMR) being ranked 13 on CMC.
It’s also worth mentioning that cryptocurrencies that are not privacy-centric, may decide to implement privacy-enabling solutions in the future. One such example is Litecoin (LTC) and its potential to implement MimbleWimble transactions.
All in all, Bytecoin will always have competitors but it may maintain its relevance in niche markets and amongst OG crypto holders.
Bytecoin is one of the oldest blockchain projects and is the first to focus on user privacy. It has managed to grow and maintain a strong following despite its controversial launch where 82% of BCN was pre-mined. And it continues to stay relevant and be a viable option among privacy coin enthusiasts.
As governments continue to censor citizen spending and get more involved in the crypto space, privacy coins like Bytecoin may see an increase in interest. However, it’s unclear if users will flock to Bytecoin or other, more popular, and trusted privacy coins like Monero.
What do you think about Bytecoin (BCN)? Will it forever maintain user interest as it was the first privacy coin? Let us know what you think in the comment section below.