Nym, a company that is focused on building privacy infrastructure, is bringing anonymous credentials technology to the Cosmos ecosystem, a decentralized network of independent, parallel blockchains.
Privacy has long been a challenge for blockchains. Since transactions on a blockchain are public, anyone can view them—and blockchain analytics companies can help to identify the people making them. The introduction of anonymous credentials from Nym can let users shield their information, introducing a stronger layer of privacy.
“Previous anonymous credential work has always depended on a centralized authority to issue the credentials, even if they’re anonymous, you still need that central authority up and online,” Harry Haplin, CEO at Nym Technologies told Decrypt.
Centralized credentials would typically only be available when a network’s nodes are up, but on Cosmos’ ecosystem, Nym credentials will be permanently accessible, he said.
Anonymous credentials are a way for users to obtain certain credentials or attributes from an issuer on a blockchain, without sacrificing any unnecessary privacy. In other words, these credentials represent the difference between a user providing their exact age, or being able to guarantee their age is over 18—without sharing their age or birthday.
Nym’s anonymous credentials are built on a selective credential disclosure scheme called Coconut, built by the company’s co-founder, George Danezis.
One advantage of anonymous credentials is achieving compliance with KYC and AML requirements without requiring the user to provide any unnecessary information. Through the use of Nym credentials, the Cosmos ecosystem can now strike a better balance between regulatory requirements and user-demand for privacy—a thin tightrope to walk down.