Bitcoin network accepts privacy updates as probe increases

Bitcoin is getting more privacy features as scrutiny increases over the use of crypto during a current series of ransomware attacks.

This past weekend the most important update in 4 years to the computer software that supports the world’s largest digital token was accepted with a small fanfare. In previous years, fights among the groups called miners who run the network were distinguished as a civil war and led to offshoots like Bitcoin Cash.

The main update makes the network simpler to use for specific big embedded applications known as smart contracts. Also, the so-called Taproot update can allow more people to use privacy services and wallets that make it difficult to point out who paid whom. This could improve the anonymity features prized by advocates of the digital currency, which law enforcement says is usually used for illegal purposes.

The United States has currently linked cyberattacks against meat producer JBS SA and Colonial Pipeline Co. to groups in Russia that used the crypto.

Bitcoin supporters, who’ve long termed the suggestion of illegal use exaggerated, told that the modifications could enhance how payments to several people are sent, or how crypto bets or derivatives are made on the network.

A vast majority of smart-contract applications are being built elsewhere, on networks like Ethereum today. Taproot won’t quite make the world’s largest crypto a direct competitor to the most used crypto network. Ethereum has more features and developer activity. Also, it is simpler to use. But it’s a move in that way, and it can make Bitcoin more appealing to developers and users.

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