A planned hard fork of the privacy-focused cryptocurrency monero is to occur sooner than expected due an increase in its hashrate.
Originally planned for September 21, the fork – intended to bring enhanced privacy features to all users – is now likely to occur on September 16, as revealed at a developer meeting last week. The question of whether to adjust the block number to prevent a premature fork was addressed in the meeting – however, the developers have instead formally adjusted the date on the hard fork schedule.
In cryptocurrency mining, the hashrate is the speed at which computations are performed. When hashrate increases, miners find blocks more quickly, propelling the blockchain forward.
The impending hard fork will introduce the mandatory use of so-called “ring confidential transactions” (RingCTs) on the network, though the majority of monero users are already utilizing the currently optional technology.
Introduced on January 10, RingCTs are an upgrade from the older ring signatures, and better obscure transaction outputs, meaning no one can view the details of a transaction outside the parties involved. The technology builds on monero’s existing privacy features, including hidden accounts, hidden transactions and trustless coin generation.
Monero is currently the eighth largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization, which currently stands at $1.94 billion, according to CoinMarketCap data. Notably, it achieved an all-time high of over $150 on August 28. At press time, a monero token was worth around $125.