Zcash (ZEC) represents an evolutionary step up the ladder of crypto currency privacy, and it is a pioneer of zero-knowledge cryptography. As Zcash’s official site puts it: if Bitcoin is the http of the crypto currency industry, Zcash is its https.
Like Bitcoin, Zcash is a decentralized, open-source digital currency, but unlike its more popular and famous predecessor, it goes all the way when it comes to privacy. Its blockhain does indeed register all the transactions that that place in the Zcash network, but in the case of shielded transactions, it hides the identity of the sender, the recipient as well as the amount involved in the transaction.
According to some, Zcash’s blockchain is superior to the blockchains of Bitcoin and Ethereum. While that assessment is debatable, there are certainly a few interesting ideas introduced by Zcash. One such idea is that of the fungible crypto currency.
Fungibility refers to the fact that all Zcash coins have to remain equal and fully interchangeable at all times. What this means is that every one of the currency units has to be unlinked from its history. This is exactly what Zcash accomplishes with the shielded transactions on its blockchain.
The above mentioned zero-knowledge proof technology is quite a potential game changer as well. What it sets out to accomplish is to check fully encrypted transactions as valid or not and to confirm their status. This obviously opens the door for an entirely new class of blockchain applications to be developed.
Launched in October 2016, Zcash is indeed a relatively new kid on the crypto block-chain. Like Bitcoin, it too is limited to some 21 million units, meaning that that is how many units of the currency will ever come into existence.
Despite its tender age, Zcash is already number 14 in the virtual currencies by market cap.