zkSync launches Alpha Mainnet

A day after Arbitrum launched its public airdrop, another Ethereum scaler released its own offering. Matter Labs has now opened its ZkSync Era for users to start using their Layer-2 technology and transition.

Increase scalability Ethereum

It is the latest step in a phased mainnet launch that began in 2019. Rollups reportedly allow Ethereum to scale, moving transactions from the mainnet to a Layer-2 network like zkSync. Then users on this second network can transact, batching them and compressing them into a small piece of data called a proof. This proof is then sent back to Ethereum and verified.

It is worth mentioning that this will be a first version of the system. From a technical point of view, a lot still needs to be done to get everything working perfectly.

A core aspect of zkSync’s scalability solution is the zero-knowledge Ethereum Virtual Machine (zkEVM). The team is applying a version of the rollup technology that uses zero-knowledge cryptography, hence the “zk” as opposed to the optimistic rollups. ZkSync’s virtual machine allows this complex cryptography to be easily integrated with Ethereum, as it exists today and has been extensively tested.

Exploits in bridges

The team does feel some risk in launching an Ethereum bridge. Recently, it has become increasingly common for bridges to be exploited, which means that a lot of money can be stolen.

Bridge exploits have resulted in some of the biggest losses in the industry, most notably the $620 million hack of Axie Infinity’s Ronin bridge last year.

The team therefore does everything it can to secure such vulnerabilities as well as possible. Still, nothing is 100% foolproof. However, the company finally says that they have spent a lot of money on audits and pay bounties for finding any bugs in their system. Finally, this should inspire confidence.

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