Dear Noir Community,
Today you will learn about the Sigma Protocol.
The Sigma Protocol is a key feature of our blockchain (like Zerocoin was before) to allow the complete anonymity of all your funds; nevertheless, learning how to use it properly will increase the privacy and safety of all of your prior and future transactions.
Without the Sigma protocol, all Noir transactions would be completely public and traceable. Sigma allows you to completely erase the history of your coins by using the Mint and Spend commands.
The Mint command basically “cleans” your Noir by converting a certain number of Noir into Sigma. All of the new Mints will be together on the blockchain and it would be very hard to determine who processed them. After doing a MINT you must wait for at least 6 confirmations (more, in this case, are better) until those Sigma are available to spend.
The Spend command converts your specific number of Sigma back into clean, new Noir which lack any prior transaction history and can be used safely. After doing a SPEND to yourself you must wait for 6 confirmations until those Noir are available to send. If you are doing a SPEND directly to your recipient, you are done.
To Mint Sigma, go to the Sigma Page in your personal (Core) wallet, make sure you are on the Mint Tab, then enter the amount you want and click the Mint button.
Once you clicked the Mint button, it will take a couple of confirmations on the blockchain to process. Be aware that your wallet must be completely synchronized with the blockchain in order to proceed with the Mint and Spend commands.
Once the Mint is fully confirmed on the blockchain, you can use the Spend command which will place your Sigma as safe-to-use Noir, in an address you specify, with no prior history.
Tip: Don’t Mint and Spend right away. If you mint 50 coins and you spend 50 coins right after the Mint command is confirmed, this transaction can be assumed as yours. It’s convenient to Mint and let your confirmations merge with thousands of other Mint transactions on the blockchain before spending them.
Remember, the objective is to enable privacy.