Blockstream Proposes a Whole New Type of Multisig Called ROAST


Security has always been of utmost priority in the crypto space. To reinforce security, multisig or multisignature is the widely accepted standard in crypto. Multisig refers to a method of transaction in which two or more signatures are required to sign off before the transaction can be executed. Rather than a single signature, multisig requires multiple keys to authorize a transaction.

In a bid to further improve security and avoid problems of transaction failures, the research unit of Bitcoin (BTC)-focused blockchain tech firm, Blockstream has published a proposal for a new type of multisignature. This multisignature standard is called Robust Asynchronous Schnorr Threshold Signatures (ROAST). ROAST will be able to work at scale and counter the effects of malicious signers.

According to a Wednesday blog post from Blockstream research, the basic idea of ROAST is to make transactions between the Bitcoin network and Blockstream’s sidechain, 

Liquid, more efficient, automated, secure, and private. ROAST has been posited to work with and improve other threshold signature schemes such as FROST (Flexible Round-Optimized Schnorr Threshold Signatures). The researchers highlighted that while FROST can be an effective method of signing off on BTC transactions, it is a suboptimal automated signing software. ROAST is set to solve this problem as it can guarantee a much larger scale signing than the 11-of-15 multistig standard that Blockstream primarily utilizes.

In the words of the Blockstream researchers, “Our empirical performance evaluation shows that ROAST scales well to large signer groups, e.g., a 67-of-100 setup with the coordinator and signers on different continents. Even with 33 malicious signers that try to block signing attempts (e.g., by sending invalid responses or not responding at all), the 67 honest signers can successfully produce a signature within a few seconds.”

ROAST is part of the collaboration between Blockstream researchers Tim Ruffing and Elliott Jin, Viktoria Ronge and Dominique Schroder from the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg, and Jonas Schneider-Bensch from the CISPA Helmholtz Center for Information Security.

Featured Image: DepositPhotos © Alexmit

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