We at Slant, the team behind privEOS are excited to be able to say "Hello, World!". The product we've been working on for the past couple of months is ready to be tested in testnet.
What is privEOS?
PrivEOS is an important piece of infrastructure for dApps on the EOS network that is currently missing. With privEOS, dApps will be able to store their private customer data in a decentralised way. Not only will they be able to store the data decentrally, they will also be able to control via a smart contract who gets access to the data, under which conditions, and when. The conditions under which a user gets read-access to a piece of data are freely programmable by the dApp.
What can I build with privEOS?
You build your smart contract based dApp just as you normally would. But now, thanks to privEOS, your dApp can start collecting personal data from your customers in a GDPR compliant way. This opens the doors to a whole class of decentralised applications that couldn't have been built on public blockchains before!
Additionally, you can use smart contract logic to control read-access to that data, which enables yet another class of applications to be built. You can implement dead-man switches, time based locks for data, multisig data delegation, and many other things that can be done with smart contracts.
Due to the use of blockchain for giving read-access, access logs can be proven to not having been tampered with. For the demonstration of a data marketplace example application that we have built on privEOS, see our demo video below.
Why not just use encryption?
You certainly can encrypt a file and store it on the blockchain (or rather its hash on the blockchain and the actual data in IPFS). You cannot, however, give read access to somebody without sharing the decryption key with them. That means the dApp would need to be in possession of the decryption keys for all files, which would completely defeat the purpose. Besides, it would not be possible because smart contracts cannot keep any secrets from anybody and hence cannot decrypt data. The management of keys is the hard part and that's exactly what privEOS is designed for.
How does privEOS work?
PrivEOS consists of a node network that is operated by independent EOS block producers. The privEOS smart contract is used to coordinate these independent actors. Let's say we have 30 nodes in our network. When you store a file in privEOS, the decryption key gets split into 30 pieces and gets distributed, one piece each, to our independent nodes. Now, to decrypt the file, you would need all 30 pieces. As you can see there is no central place, no centralised entity that has access to all of those pieces. Now what happens if one of those 30 nodes become unavailable? In a production environment, there would be some redundancy built in. So for instance, the system can be configured so you will need 20 of those 30 pieces of the decryption key in order to read the file. This way, we have achieved a system that is both very decentralised, secure and safe from data loss due to redundancies. For more information, take a look at our privEOS white paper.
How do I integrate privEOS into my dApp?
Calling all EOS Block Producers
We are looking for EOS block producers who would like to become privEOS node operators. As Dan said, BPs should diversify their income. Here's an opportunity for you!
What is expected of BPs?
BPs that are privEOS node operators are expected to run a dedicated, reliable and secure server that is running the privEOS open source server software. The privEOS software is very lean on resources and does not have huge hardware requirements. Hosting costs to run a privEOS server would therefore be very low, especially in the beginning. As we continue to further develop the privEOS software, we will be adding new functionality and improvements along the way. BPs will be expected to help by giving feedback and helping to test and review the code.
PrivEOS Token and Revenue Distribution
The privEOS token will be delegated for free to the participating block producers. 100% of the revenue of privEOS, which will be either in EOS or potentially a stablecoin, will be distributed to the holders/delegatees of the privEOS tokens. That makes the participating BPs, together with Slant, effectively the owners of a decentralised autonomous community (DAC), which will be governed by the token holders/delegatees. The Slant AG, which is a limited company registered in Liechtenstein, will function as a service company to the DAC, facilitating real-world business.
Which BPs qualify?
In order to become a node operator with privEOS, you should be a BP from the Top 100 that is in compliance with the regproducer ricardian contract. Independence, geographical diversity and a track record in providing useful tools and services for the community are important considerations. If you are a BP and would like to join, please visit our telegram group and get in touch!
We are actively looking for BPs who would like to start testing privEOS with us on the testnet. Being active on the testnet is a great first step on the way for you to become a permanent member of the privEOS network and DAC. You'll get access to our github repository and can start setting up your node. If you're interested, please join our telegram group.