ARPA Expands Partnership Suite Amid Broader Focus on Computational Privacy
Privacy is at a premium in today’s digital age, and everywhere you look, entrepreneurs and startups are taking action to improve data privacy and security. From Blockstack’s recent partnership with Lambda School, focusing on educational material for dapp security and privacy, to open-sourcing private financial transactions with Nightfall, it is becoming more evident by the day that we are only penetrating the surface of a new wave of innovation in data privacy.
One firm, ARPA, has developed into a leader in the field of computational and data privacy through its advances in the cryptographic primitive known as secure multi-party computation (sMPC) — once thought of as a pipe dream in the evolving field of cryptography. And their recent partnership with MultiVAC is further evidence of how their platform is attracting industry proponents of scalable privacy solutions.
ARPA & Scalable, Private Computation
ARPA is a second-layer, privacy-preserving computation network that enables scalable, private, and secure smart contracts and computational sharding with blockchains. According to the project’s whitepaper:
“With a state-of-the-art multi-party computation protocol as a layer 2 solution, our privacy-preserving computation guarantees data security on blockchains, cryptographically, while reducing the heavy-lifting computation job to a few nodes.”
Essentially, ARPA off-loads the burdensome computational requirements for sMPC, making the technology, blockchain-agnostic, scalable, and accessible in the process. As a result, ARPA can be tapped for various high-value use cases from fraud prevention in insurance and credit markets to the validation of cryptocurrency exchange reserves — without exposing precise reserve details.
The concept of sMPC has faced significant practical hurdles since its inception in the late 1970s but has undergone an accelerated advance in recent years — largely as an outlay of the privacy focus that was born from the cryptography used in Bitcoin, and subsequently, other cryptocurrencies. ARPA’s exploration of sMPC has become one of the most interesting to date, with their technology focusing on enterprise applications attracting partners like Alibaba Cloud, Blockcloud, JD.com, and SinoChem already.
The most recent addition, MultiVAC — a sharding-based, high-throughput blockchain platform — expands on ARPA’s vision for unprecedented data privacy and protection amid a wave of blockchain innovation.
For their part, MultiVAC incorporates the horizontal database partitioning technology, sharding, in a public blockchain network designed to overcome the scaling woes plaguing the likes of Ethereum and other public blockchains. A member of Binance’s Transparency Initiative, MultiVAC announced their strategic partnership with ARPA amid the ongoing testnet 2.0 work — called “Enigma.”
“The establishment of a strategic partnership between MultiVAC and ARPA is a key landmark for both sides,” details ARPA’s medium announcement. “DApp developers on MultiVAC can freely use a secure computation network in APRA to guarantee users’ privacy and security. MultiVAC will deepen its cooperation with ARPA in sensitive information inquiry and big data marketing in the short term.”
The collaboration between the firms will enable MultiVAC blockchain and dapp developers to furnish mathematical guarantees of privacy and security of their applications using ARPA — becoming one of ARPA’s more than 20 global partners in the process. And down the line, the two companies are looking to build on their relationship, moving into other industries where data security and privacy are at a premium.
“In the future, we may expand our cooperation in the fields of finance and medical treatment in enterprises,” details the MultiVAC medium announcement post.
For now, we’re seeing the origins of what is surely to become a socially-fueled trend towards more data privacy and security following the seemingly endless litany of hacks and fraud perpetrated across big tech and financial firms in recent years.
The blockchain and cryptocurrency sector has been spearheading the initiatives towards producing better cryptographic protections, and ARPA’s recent partnership with MultiVAC is another marker for the progress currently underscoring the push for scalable digital privacy.
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