JP Buntinx, The Merkle: First-Ever IOTA Mixer Hits the Testnet

Original post:
https://themerkle.com/first-ever-iota-mixer-hits-the-testnet/

Cryptocurrency mixers do not necessarily have the best of reputations. Centralized solutions like these require a lot of trust to remove any taint from people’s coins. In a way, it is a money laundering-esque tool which provides additional privacy and anonymity. Surprisingly, IOTA now has its very first mixing service, which is running on the testnet. It’s an interesting development that may bring more privacy to this particular token in the future.

IOTA MIXING ON THE TESTNET

It has always been interesting to see how people have responded to the concept of cryptocurrency mixers. In the Bitcoin world, there are currently a handful of such solutions, although one of the larger services shut down a few months ago. Since Bitcoin has no privacy or anonymity traits, it is not a great tool for conducting illicit activity.

Despite this lack of privacy, criminals continue to flock to Bitcoin when it comes to scams and other types of nefarious activity. Given the rise of proper privacy and anonymity-centric currencies such as Monero, one would expect the interest in Bitcoin mixers to drop off over time. Whether or not that will transpire remains to be seen.

Other top cryptocurrencies which don’t have native privacy features are looking closely at the mixer concept, though. IOTA, for example, will soon get its very first mixing service. This new tool is currently deployed on the testnet in an effort to collect feedback and iron out any lingering bugs. More specifically, this new mixer is the first application designed to improve the anonymity and fungibility of IOTA.

Despite what most people may think of mixing services, they do provide fungibility to currencies. Some altcoins enable this functionality at the protocol level, effectively removing the need for centralized mixing services altogether. There is no right or wrong approach in this regard. However, one has to acknowledge that any centralized service in the world of cryptocurrency is a liability.

IOTA is one of the many cryptocurrencies which has a transparent blockchain by design. As a result, some people are hesitant to transact with this currency because all transaction information is out in the open. It is difficult to solve this particular problem without using mixers or similar services. Mixing could be a useful feature for IOTA in the long run, but it remains to be seen how the general community will respond. Although only deployed on the testnet for the time being, this mixing service will eventually come to the mainnet in the near future.

It will be interesting to see how all of this affects the future of IOTA. Right now, this particular development will be of great interest to the IOTA community. However, the use cases for this particular altcoin remain somewhat limited right now, despite having a lot of promise when it comes to the Internet of Things. There is great interest in using privacy-centric currencies right now, but it remains to be seen which of these coins will come out on top.