Local Ethereum describes itself as “Ether’s local private marketplace”. Read our Local Ethereum review to find out how it works today.
What Is Local Ethereum?
Local Ethereum, found online at LocalEthereum.com, is a private marketplace where you can spend Ether in exchange for fiat currencies. The marketplace plans to bridge the gap between Ether and offline currencies using smart contracts and in-browser cryptography.
Together, these features make Local Ethereum “the most private way to buy or sell Ether for offline currencies.”
One of the unique things about the Local Ethereum platform is that it’s a web-based peer-to-peer exchange where all communications are encrypted. Messages between buyers and sellers are encrypted from end-to-end, transactions are protected by smart contracts, and identities are secured by digital signatures.
The developers behind Local Ethereum have been building the platform over the past 8 months. Development is 80% complete as of May 30 2017. Once the project reaches 100% completion, it will undergo a thorough security audit, then launch onto the internet.
The ultimate goal of Local Ethereum is to offer a local, peer-to-peer marketplace that vastly enhances the usability of Ether as a cryptocurrency.
You’ll be able to access the marketplace through your web browser without installing any additional plugins or software. It will just be like an ordinary online marketplace – but with highly-secure Ether transactions.
How Does Local Ethereum Work?
Here are some of the key features that have already been built into the Local Ethereum platform.
There’s no need to install any third-party apps or plugins to use Local Ethereum. The platform is based entirely on the internet and is accessible through any ordinary internet browser. It does this while living up to modern cryptography standards.
The secret behind Local Ethereum’s security is its Web Crypto API, a secure interface built for cryptographic operations. That API was developed in part by Google, Mozilla, and Netflix, and is now available on all major web browsers. This is how Local Ethereum built its secure messaging protocol.
For that protocol to work, every account has a public and private key pair. Just like with most cryptocurrencies, the public key is public and the private key is private. Your private key never touches the internet.
To sign into your account, you’ll need to decrypt an encrypted private key using a stretched password as the key – similar to Blockchain.info’s web wallet for bitcoin.
Messages are signed and encrypted from end-to-end for absolute privacy, and transactions are signed in the browser. So even if there was a hack, nobody’s messages or finances would be at risk.
There is one situation where your messages can be read: the only time Local Ethereum may read messages is when either party initiates the dispute resolution process, which involves volunteering the decrypted versions of signed messages to an arbitrator.
Local Ethereum will have a sleek UI that makes it easy for anyone to use.
Together, these features let users conduct real-world transactions over a secure, local Ether marketplace.
How To Use Local Ethereum
Local Ethereum is not yet available for launch. The platform is 80% complete (as of May 30 2017) and needs to go through a complete security audit before it’s finally released.
If you’re interested in Local Ethereum, and plan on using it in the future, then you may wish to sign up for the Local Ethereum mailing list on the official website. The first 100 members on the waiting list will receive no fees on the first $50,000 USD transacted. All you need to do is enter your email address.
Since LocalEthereum.com launched online several days ago, however, the first 100 spots have already likely been taken. Nevertheless, the promotional offer is still posted on the Local Ethereum website.
Local Ethereum Summary
Stay tuned for more information about the Local Ethereum project as it wraps up its development over the coming weeks! There’s no final release date. However, the market should be big news across the Ethereum community when it eventually launches.