Ernst & Young (EY), one of the Big 4 accounting firms, open sources their Nightfall software today. Nightfall is a protocol designed to enable private transactions on Ethereum that leverages Zero Knowledge Proof (ZKP) technology. ZKP is an existing, implemented technology seen in privacy cryptocurrencies like Zcash. Nightfall introduces ZKP to Ethereum.
In an official blog post published on LinkedIn, EY writes that the release is:
"an important milestone... because it gets us closer to our vision and our aspiration to change how the world does business. Very simply, we hope and believe that, a decade from now, the standard way in which multiple companies contract and work with each other will be through digital smart contracts managing the exchange of goods and services tokens for payment tokens. All executed securely, privately, and legally on public blockchains"
The post then elaborates on how public blockchains will revolutionize business communication just like what Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) has done for enterprise companies.
EY justifies blockchain technology by writing:
"Blockchains have one trick that is more magical and revolutionary than anything else they do: they can execute transactions and business logic across a network without requiring a central authority to validate and complete that work. Same symphony, same music, no conductor."
The post also touches on why Nightfall leans into a public blockchain instead of a private one. Specifically, they chose a public blockchain because its decentralized, whereas private blockchains are not. Even though private blockchains allow for more privacy and control, they are not better than "web portal when it comes to reducing the strategic risk of participation in digital business networks".