Layer 2 Privacy arrives on Ethereum
Today, Aztec is proud to launch our rollup service — it’s live on mainnet today.
Try zk.money — where ETH now has a Zcash-style shield.
Please remember that this is a beta deployment of Aztec. Today we are deploying extremely complex cryptography, and we remind users that you are using Aztec’s cutting-edge rollup service at your own risk.
Today, we’ve got some big announcements to make:
- Private rollup service for ETH is live
- ERC-20 tokens to be added in the next few weeks
- Block Explorer is live
- Alpha release of Noir private smart contracts language for Aztec3.0
Renewing Our Mission: Fast, Functional Privacy
Aztec shelters your blockchain transactions from the world’s gaze — giving you bank-grade privacy on open, permissionless financial networks.
And we want to give you more and more functionality, so your assets can stay private inside the Aztec L2 without the need to unshield to access L1 DeFi.
Why is privacy so important? We can’t put it better than this:
“… using DeFi is a bit like getting the financial equivalent of a tattoo. And while that $YAM tattoo … might be fun for a week or two, you might regret it 30 years later.”
Today’s Launch: Aztec 2.0 & zk.money
With today’s rollup launch, you can submit ETH to the Aztec rollup contract and do the following:
- Send Privately
- Emergency Unshield (escape hatch)
We’ll soon introduce up to 3 further tokens such as WBTC, one by one — and finally we’ll add all ERC-20s to the rollup.
Aztec accounts can be created with or without a linked Ethereum address, and don’t need an initial on-chain transaction to receive funds.
Recognisable address aliases (@name) are now supported —but rest assured, your transaction activities are encrypted, so you won’t broadcast your financial history to the world.
The ZK Block Explorer
Our beautiful new ZK Block Explorer is out!
Coming Next: Aztec 2.1+
We will gradually introduce new assets such as WBTC, BAT, AAVE, DAI into the rollup over the coming weeks.
Increasing the Cap
As the network burns in, we will gradually raise the transaction cap, currently set at 1 ETH for security purposes.
We will additionally upgrade the network to enable users to interact with liquid DeFi transaction types, without leaving the Aztec network.
As we upgrade the network, bit by bit, we never forget our guiding mission — here’s a reminder.
Ethereum: The Dark Forest, Floodlit
Last year, Dan and Georgios from Paradigm gave Ethereum a memorable new sobriquet — the Dark Forest — in their field report on MEV predators.
But in this forest, you don’t need a torch, and you don’t need to be David Attenborough — the whole forest floor is floodlit, and everything you do is visible forever.
Decentralised applications have crossed the liquidity rubicon in 2020, brought permissionless borrowing, lending and trading into action, at scale.
Suddenly, the financial world is turning on its axis, running on the rails of open networks.
As transaction volumes mushroom, and Web3 provides our new host networks for financial activity — we must protect those freedoms. We must keep our private information from being etched permanently, unencrypted, into the stone tablet of public networks.
DeFi and Privacy
Our goal at Aztec is to normalise Web3 privacy — just as most Web2 communications are protected by SSL. We passionately believe that we can’t move forward without it.
With our sights fixed on that goal, we need to build a community of engineers on the Aztec Layer 2, so today, we’re thrilled to make a further announcement that sets the course for Aztec’s future.
A Language for Private DeFi
Noir is Aztec’s Rust-style language, engineered by Kev Wedderburn as part of a project generously funded by the Ethereum Foundation.
Noir will enable programmable privacy inside the PLONK rollup, and we expect to be able to give engineers a deployed Layer 2 able to execute their private contracts in early 2022.
We want to get this out into the community, to collect feedback and help to form consensus around a new standard in SNARK-based languages.
What Noir Brings to Aztec
- Customisable privacy
- Rust-style language
- Endless use cases: private dexes, identity proofs, credit ratings, and all “DePay” applications e.g. escrow, scheduled payments, private streams
- Signatures over any curve
- Ethereum contract calls from circuits
- Aztec Standard Library — efficient audited versions of common cryptographic primitives
Join the Webcast
We will be hosting a webcast to introduce the community to the alpha of Noir, so you can have your input and help us make sure Noir is a spectacular engineering experience for the future of private DeFi.
Join Kev and Zac, creators of Noir and PLONK respectively, for a deep dive into this new paradigm, on Thursday 25 March at 1800 hrs UTC.
The Team Behind the Rollup
Thanks are due to the extraordinary team at Aztec, for their superhuman endeavours in cryptography and engineering, to bring this groundbreaking security service to Ethereum.
Thanks also to Yanay and Regan at Dove Mountain Partners for their help with the launch.
Get in Touch!
If you have any questions or comments, please message us at tom [at] aztecprotocol.com, or else by joining one of our community channels below:
Join our Community
Thanks again to Yanay Prop who worked extensively on this post.