Ethereum founder Vitalik Buterin wants more data protection for NFTs | 08/29/22

• Buterin wants to integrate data protection functions into NFTs
• Implementation of stealth addresses for NFTs
• Smart contract wallets as a possible solution

Ethereum founder Buterin wants to implement stealth addresses

In a tweet from early August, Ethereum founder Vitalik Buterin suggested a “low-tech approach” to include privacy features in non-fungible tokens (NFTs), or NFT transactions. Buterin expressed the idea of ​​introducing crypto addresses to the current Ethereum token standard for NFTs, ERC-721, and linked it to the page in his post.

At, Anton Warstater, researcher and lecturer at the Institute for Distributed Ledgers and Token Economics, previously reported on the idea of ​​hidden addresses. He was inspired by a blog post in January by Ethereum founder Buterin. Wahrstätter explains that with stealth addresses implemented, users can cast and burn NFTs relatively anonymously.

More anonymity through incognito addresses

“An idea: incognito addresses for ERC721s. A low-tech way to add a great deal of privacy to the NFT ecosystem. For example, you can send an NFT to dynamic.eth without anyone but me (the new owner) being able to find out who it is,” Buterin said on Twitter. The new owner is.

A cryptic address is a unique wallet address that is used to create further anonymity in transactions. While normal wallet addresses are publicly visible and transactions can be traced back to that address, a cryptic address acts as a kind of proxy for your private wallet address.

Buterin suggests using smart contract wallets as a possible solution

In response to Wahrstätter’s proposal at, which included Merkle trees and zero-summarized non-interactive knowledge arguments, or zk-SNARKs in short, Buterin explained that this involved a more complex method for stealth addresses for ERC-721 tokens and proposed a solution of his own: According to Buterin, it could That smart contract wallets include a method that would allow the sender to essentially hide their address from third parties.


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However, according to Buterin, one challenge remains figuring out how to pay the fee. “The best I can think of is that if you send someone ERC721, they also send enough ETH to pay a 5- to 50-time fee to send it. If you receive ERC721 without enough ETH, you can send some of the ETH that was put into it to keep it,” Buterin said. “. However, according to the Ethereum founder, there may be a “better overall solution that somehow involves specialized researchers or block builders.”

After Wahrstätter and Buterin circulated the idea further on and other users also joined the discussion and asked questions, Buterin clarified a few days later: “Now that I think about it more, I realize that it doesn’t really make sense to keep this standard part of ERC721 By itself. There are many potential use cases for it. So it is likely that ERC is independent, allowing users to create new addresses owned by other users, and both ERC721 and other applications can use this ERC token.” Further: “Apart About that, my main comment on the EIP so far is that I wish I could add something like the idea of ​​how to create a StealthAddress from my previous post so that we can support smart contract wallets.”

Criticism of Buterin’s idea

However, some users have also expressed concerns about Buterin’s co-signing of stealth titles, according to Nft Now. For example, stealth titles can provide a way for thieves and other ill-intentioned actors to make recovering a stolen NFT nearly impossible. It will be more difficult to track down stolen NFTs without a publicly available address for investigators to display on the blockchain.

Another argument is that Buterin’s idea runs counter to one of the fundamental principles of blockchain technology, which is the creation of a new decentralized economy based on publicly available records.

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