This article was first published on IOTA - Medium
As you may know, Masked Authenticated Messaging (MAM) is a second layer data communication protocol which adds functionality to emit and access an encrypted data stream over the Tangle (IOTA’s distributed ledger). IOTA’s consensus protocol adds integrity to these message streams. Given these properties, MAM fulfills an important need in industries where integrity and privacy meet.
In IOTA, a user can publish a message at any time. They only need to conduct a small amount of Proof of Work (PoW) to allow the data to propagate through the network (this is necessary to prevent spamming of the network). If nodes are listening for the channel ID (i.e. address) in real time, the message (spread through the network) will be received by a subscriber when it reaches the subscriber’s node.
For an in-depth overview of MAM up until now and IOTA, please click here.
The current implementation of MAM in IOTA has always been considered a beta prototype implementation.
Since the middle of 2018, the IOTA Foundation has been engaged with the Belarusian State University (BSU) in their pursuit to develop a MAM protocol that has undergone a security evaluation, improved design, and reference implementation.
After extensive efforts by the BSU team, the final specification was delivered in early February — what we are referring to when we use MAM in IOTA.
Using this final specification, MAM entities of IOTA can:
- Create channels for broadcasting messages;
- Create channel endpoints for protecting messages during broadcasting;
- Protect messages in different ways, for example, turn on / off encryption / authentication;
- Split messages into parts (packets), protect and transmit each part almost independently;
- Set message recipients and provide them with key material in different ways.
Creating endpoints is new. The prototype version of MAM did not include these. In the prototype MAM, channel keys are used to sign the ...
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IOTA - Medium