Monero's repetitive hard forks hurt the decentralization nature of the project as a small group of developers dictates the rules, Aleš Janda, a blockchain researcher at Chainalysis, said in an interview for the Bitcoinovej Kanál Youtube channel.
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According to a translated transcription done by a Monero community member "armitage2200," Janda believes one of the tricks how Monero is still hard to trace is repeated hard forks.
"It means the rules will be changed, we do not actually know the rules, but we know exactly the rules will change next year and will be different," Janda said.
The Chainalysis blockchain researcher thinks these often network upgrades are bad for decentralization, because a small group of blockchain developers dictate the rules, while the majority of users do not mind.
"On the other side, they force that all transactions are looking the same and this is very good for anonymity," Janda admitted.
Janda points out a cryptocurrency is traceable in most cases due to the way how people leave footprints on blockchain networks. There are two types of evidences: technological and human. While the technological evidences are revealed through transactions, addresses and fees, a human behaves "predictably and naturally." It is very hard to behave somehow randomly or unnaturally, Janda emphasizes.
However, Monero's anonymity might be at risk as CipherTrace, a cryptocurrency anti-money laundering service, has recently filed two patent applications to register its transaction-tracking technology on the Monero network.
According to CipherTrace, the solution includes tools to analyze the flow of transactions in financial investigations, assess risks based on statistical and probabilistic methods, identify groups of addresses potentially belonging to the same owner as well as display and track XMRs used for illegal purposes or obtained from illegal sources.
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