ZCash (ZEC) is a decentralized and open-source privacy-focused cryptocurrency project that offers complete confidentiality while maintaining a decentralized network. It forked from Bitcoin in 2016 and was previously known as Zerocoin, but its idea can be traced back to 2013.
ZCash was founded by Zooko Wilcox-O'Hearn to address privacy issues. ZCash coin has the same infrastructure as Bitcoin, but with one significant difference – total privacy. The same as Monero, ZEC supports fungibility (any coin is indistinguishable from any other), which plays a crucial role in designing an encrypted open ledger.
This way, all transactions (though recorded on a blockchain) can only be viewed by users that have direct access to them. There are two types of possible transactions: public (t-addr) and private (z-addr). If you choose to use a private address when you are installing and configuring your wallet, your Zcash transactions will be private.
Monero and Dash also provide reliable anonymized transactions, but ZCash seems to offer even a greater level of security. Using a zero-knowledge proof protocol, ZEC enables users to transfer coins without revealing their true addresses to each other or the world, which makes transactions untraceable, the same as the number of coins involved. It is practically impossible to trace transactions to the sender or receiver because the addresses recorded on the blockchain are not actual user's addresses.
Zcash coin mining
Zcash mining is a process of verification of transactions and adding blocks to the blockchain in return for generated coins. In this blockchain, new blocks are being created every 2.5 minutes.
Like many other crypto projects, Zcash wasn't pre-mined or ICO-funded. ZEC was created by a group of investors who provided $1 million to kick-start the project development. In return, they are getting a 15% reward of the total supply of ZEC coins during the first 4-year period, while 5% goes to core development. But in November of 2020, this system is going to change: 80% for miners, 8% for grants, 7% for the Electric Coin Company, and 5% for the Zcash Foundation.
Zcash has a maximum supply of 21 million coins, and it will take up until 2032 to mine them all, while the block mining reward is cut in half every four years. Zcash is mined through a POW Equihash algorithm, which highly relies on RAM, so miners can't use the ASIC setup for mining.
Price of Zcash
As of writing, the Zcash market cap stands at $588,317,864. The cost of 1 Zec is equal to $65.10. And there are 9,037,394 ZEC in circulation.