Security and privacy on blockchain

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Blockchain offers an innovative approach to storing information, executing transactions, performing functions, and establishing trust in an open environment. Many consider blockchain as a technology breakthrough for cryptography and cybersecurity, with use cases ranging from globally deployed cryptocurrency systems like Bitcoin, to smart contracts, smart grids over the Internet of Things, and so forth. Although blockchain has received growing interests in both academia and industry in the recent years, the security and privacy of blockchains continue to be at the center of the debate when deploying blockchain in different applications. This article presents a comprehensive overview of the security and privacy of blockchain. To facilitate the discussion, we first introduce the notion of blockchains and its utility in the context of Bitcoin-like online transactions. Then, we describe the basic security properties that are supported as the essential requirements and building blocks for Bitcoin-like cryptocurrency systems, followed by presenting the additional security and privacy properties that are desired in many blockchain applications. Finally, we review the security and privacy techniques for achieving these security properties in blockchain-based systems, including representative consensus algorithms, hash chained storage, mixing protocols, anonymous signatures, non-interactive zero-knowledge proof, and so forth. We conjecture that this survey can help readers to gain an in-depth understanding of the security and privacy of blockchain with respect to concept, attributes, techniques, and systems.

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Zhang, R., Xue, R., & Liu, L. (2019). Security and privacy on blockchain. ACM Computing Surveys, 52(3).

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