Signal continues on its quest for internet privacy. As part of a beta test, the encrypted messaging app now allows payments in its application by integrating support for a privacy-focused cryptocurrency.
According to Wired, Signal will bring payments to its application so that users can send money to each other within their communications network. It will use the MobileCoin cryptocurrency, a virtual currency designed to work on mobile devices and which in turn protects the privacy and anonymity of users.
Initially, the service will only be available in the UK. Signal users there can access the beta version of the app and link their MobileCoin wallet to Signal.
One of the pillars of this new feature is to avoid as much as possible the traditional integrated payment methods. With the Signal payments feature, the only people who know about the transaction will be the sender and the recipient, using MobileCoin, a privacy-focused cryptocurrency like Zcash or Monero.
The CEO of Signal and founder of the application, Moxie Marlinspike, picked this cryptocurrency because it is the one that has the best results on mobile devices.
MobileCoin uses a protocol called CryptoNote, which in turn integrates Ring Confidential Transactions to mix user transactions and make them virtually untraceable. In addition, the amount of the transaction made by the user is also hidden.
This cryptocurrency is one of the fastest, taking a few seconds for transactions to be confirmed, unlike ZCash, and it has state-of-the-art encryption to avoid tracking.
Marlinspike himself has been a technical advisor to the project that gave life to MobileCoin in 2017, precisely to integrate this cryptocurrency mechanics in applications such as Signal in the future.