General information about multisignature

06 May, 2020 David Kemp

Multisignature, also known as multisig, is a type of technology that allows customers to sign documents/official papers when performing transactions. Several private keys are necessary to increase the level of safety and security of the entire process.

Multisignature reminds of a threshold signature that ensures the current conditions provided using the encrypted language of the cryptocurrency.

How and When the Technology Developed

The technology of multisignature is widely spread across the crypto market. However, its basic principles existed long before BTC was created.

For centuries, this principle has existed to protect various religious and sacred documents. The keys were split between several people and access was possible only if all parts were available and present.

In 2012, BTC addresses implemented multisignature for the first time. The system created the first wallet with this function a year later, in 2013. Currently, there are ten of them.

How Multisignature Principles Work

Funds that the holder stores in his multisig-wallet are available if there are two or more signatures. Banking systems apply the same approach. The implementation of these principles can increase the level of security and help avoid possible issues. They protect sensitive data from cybercriminals who are constantly developing new fishing methods.

Multisig-wallets are popular among corporations and business owners who are willing to store funds using one common wallet.

Types of Multisignature

The number of options is wide and here we present just a few of them to let you have a general idea of some of the most popular and commonly used options.

1-in-2 is for two business partners having one account. One signature is enough to gain access.

2-in-2 is for two business partners having one account. Both signatures are necessary to gain access to the funds.

3-in-5 is for five partners. Each has a private key. Three of them can gain access while all can transfer funds to the account. The scheme decreases risks.

2-in-3 is for buyers and sellers. The method does not require a high level of trust. The buyer transfers funds to the seller’s account. In case of disagreement, the third party serves as a judge and mediator.

Ring Signatures and Their Principles

A ring signature is a kind of cryptographic digital signature. Any of the group members having the key can use it.

That is one of the safest approaches since it is impossible to identify whose key serves as the signature. They are different from group signatures since it is impossible to de-anonymize them. The idea belongs to cryptographers who first presented their method during ASIACRYPT in 2001. Nowadays the scheme helps CryptoNote users perform operations in the safest way possible.

Thanks to this innovative method, users gain a very high level of privacy. In comparison to ring signatures, we can claim that digital signatures like ECDSA are less complex. Ring signatures include various open verification keys. The most advanced technology principles helped create this kind of signatures, which makes the scheme exceptionally reliable and unique.

Principles of Key Image

Currencies as Monero often face the issue of a double spend. This makes the network less productive. To solve the problem, users can try the key image approach along with ring signatures. A key image is a cryptographic element. It is part of each transaction of the ring signature. In turn, blockchain stores a full list of all key images in use. New signatures using a copy of the image are denied and interpreted as an attempt of double-spend attempt.

How Important Are Ring CTs

Ring CTs is an improved technology modification used for ring signatures. The method increases the level of privacy for both recipient and sender. The amount of transferred funds is hidden. The blockchain blurs the information and it becomes hidden. The blockchain keeps sums of transactions private. Outside viewers cannot see the transaction. However, thanks to the cryptographic verification they can make sure that the transaction is valid.