Ernst & Young logo on a building
Ernst & Young logo on a building. EU-OCS

The leader in assurance, tax and transaction services – Ernst & Young (EY) released the new version of their zero-knowledge proof (ZKP) blockchain technology to the Ethereum public domain.

As announced in a press release on December 19th, the third generation of EY’s ZKP blockchain technology brings huge improvements that reduce transaction costs by combining a number of private transfers into a single one, making transactions on public blockchains more scalable.

The new generation includes a mechanism that bundles multiple proofs and tools that cut down the extent of an on-chain Merkle tree.


With these innovations, one transfer can contain up to 20 transactions, which reduces the cost of a transaction to 0.05 USD. In fact, this is a 400-fold upgrade from the EY prototype that was made public in October 2018.

The third-generation of ZKP technology arrives right after an EY study was published in November 2019. In it, 49% of all participants answered that security is their biggest blockchain-related concern, while 46% cited data privacy. On another note, 45% of all participants believe that the stumbling rock of private blockchain is interoperability.

EY global blockchain leader, Paul Brody, commented:

“This technology is perhaps the most important EY blockchain milestone in making public blockchains scalable for the enterprise. In the prior iteration released in April 2019, public blockchains were already getting competitive with private networks. With this iteration, we cut the cost per transaction by more than 90% again, making private transactions more accessible for mainstream business application.”

The new technology will be deployed on the public Ethereum network, but will also work on private networks that are built on Ethereum.

In the second case, the ZKP technology will supply a second security and privacy layer that will support more complicated privacy models and will work over multiple organizations.

The new ZKP batch mechanism is just the first of many more to come from EY. In the upcoming months, EY intends to facilitate better scalability. The organization is actually the first to complete a private transaction on the Ethereum network.

On the use cases of their new technology, Brody noted:

“I believe we will look back upon the industrialization of ZKPs as a key milestone in the wide enterprise migration from private to public blockchains. Organizations are increasingly seeing the potential for public blockchains, with 75% of enterprises likely to use these networks in the future. The third-generation EY ZKP technology brings us even closer to private and secure transactions on the public blockchain.”

EY’s blockchain solution is tracked by more than 500 users and organizations, and has been personalized 80 times, since Nightfall, the first ZKP technology code, was released.

EY will allow users to pool transactions and make further performance enhancements when changes to the Ethereum blockchain occur.

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