Shadow, which apparently has been in development for over six months, is building upon Bitcoin’s principles of trustless decentralization and double-spend prevention to create what the founders call a “truly anonymous, decentralized digital currency.”
Shadow’s Proof-of-Stake coin ShadowCash uses dual-key stealth addresses, traceable ring signatures, and non-interactive zero-knowledge proofs to provide untraceable and unlinkable transactions.
In addition to anonymous payments, Shadow will also offer a decentralized, encrypted messaging protocol—ShadowChat. No central servers means messages in ShadowChat stay private, and are theoretically immune to censorship. Other forms of communication such as email, Skype and SMS are notoriously lacking in privacy.
The next component of the Shadow economy, ShadowMarket, is an anonymous, decentralized marketplace. Combined with ShadowChat’s encrypted messaging, ShadowMarket will allow users to trade goods and services with other users anonymously, and without any external interference.
The Shadow project’s stated mission:
Establish an anonymous economy with multiple features that give people all the financial freedom and privacy they should have. This will be accomplished by building an anonymous chat, commerce, and currency platform that defends our privacy through cryptography. Shadow’s anonymous cryptocurrency and messenger functions are operational and can already be downloaded on Android, iOS, Windows, OSX and Linux systems. ShadowMarket is scheduled to launch in the second quarter of 2015.
Recently, the Shadow team ran a Thunderclap campaign to boost awareness of their project. Thunderclap is a “crowdspeaking” platform where backers donate tweets and social media posts rather than money. According to the Shadow team, their campaign with the #FightForPrivacy message exceeded its target and reached more than one million people worldwide.
There are several resources that provide more information on the Shadow platform, a community website, a wiki, a forum, a subreddit, an active Slack group, and an IRC #shadowcash channel at freenode.net.