What's the risk of public Bitcoin address, except person - account link is publically known. Or, is it preferable to have one such account?

  • Downside: People can see how much has been sent to you. Upside: Your transactions get confirmed faster because it's all coming from one address.
    – Nick ODell
    Nov 26, 2012 at 9:46
  • 1
    Bitcoin internally has no concept of addresses, and reasons in terms of "coins" that are consumed and produced by transactions. Whether those belong to the same address or not makes zero difference for confirmation time. Nov 26, 2012 at 10:12

1 Answer 1


For privacy, Bitcoin relies on "pseudonymity", which means that the only way people can choose not to disclose their identity, is by making it hard to link addresses to people/businesses/....

Publishing an address publicly obviously makes you give up that privacy, but that's not a problem. everyone is free to choose so of course. The problem is that it also makes it easier to trace the identity of others, by linking addresses after following transactions in the block chain. Publishing addresses may in this way decrease the privacy of many people using the system, including people who are unrelated to you.

Even just reusing the same address for multiple receiving transactions is already bad for the network in this sense, as it increases the ability to link transactions and addresses.

The general advice is to use each receiving address just once. This also makes it easier to distinguish incoming transactions, for example.

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