New node runner here. I am running Bitcoin and Lightning, connecting to each over Tor. I have only basic custodial lightning skills and looking to level up.
I linked Alby and Zeus to my node with LNC.
I would like to learn to use Lightning with privacy in mind.
Any steps I should take to avoid leaking my IP / public key / identity to peers or bad actors?
Any 'basic privacy rules' for managing, receiving or sending Lightning funds I should know?
Can just send some sats to my node (via Alby web extension) from a voucher or custodial wallet - and start zapping? Or do I have to make on-chain transactions and open channels to use my node efficiently?
thanks!
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Pretty nuts that not much has changed since that was written. At least SCIDs are well supported now.
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Yeah, unfortunate. Always feels like several things are always on the cusp of being a reality soon but it's still not there yet. Pretty difficult work on top of every lightning team having their own priorities.
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simply wanted to reiterated the point that one should not consolidate mixed utxos, not even on a node
Not "should not" but again "avoid as much as possible"
Great care should be given when consolidating UTXOs that have been coinjoined. Since the whole reason you are doing that is to untie them in the first place. A lightning node is no exception to that rule.
If you want multiple channels, still just use one UTXO that they all stem from. Cut in half and open two channels (or any fractional amount).
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633 sats \ 1 reply \ @kepford 3 Jan
One tip that is helpful if you are both concerned about privacy as well as desiring higher performance with your Zeus mobile app. Try Tailscale out. You can run it on your node and use the IP address to access your node. Tor works but is very slow.
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💯 Just switched to tailscale for Zeus recently and loading is now basically instantaneous.
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591 sats \ 1 reply \ @kepford 3 Jan
Any steps I should take to avoid leaking my IP / public key / identity to peers or bad actors?
  • Run your node over Tor
  • Your public key is public
  • Don't link your identity to your pubkey. IE, don't share it on the web.
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I would add, I would be wary about using Alby to access your node unless you use an anon email and VPN. I would stick with Zeus.
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You need to open at least one channel to use your lightning node.
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I believe you can also sign with your node without opening a channel though
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What is LNC? Did you mean LND?
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LNC = Lightning Node Connect (beta), which I found as an option inside my Lightning Terminal app.
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Lightning Node Connect Ah! Thanks, I'm familiar but it wasn't clicking that this is what you were talking about.
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325 sats \ 1 reply \ @k00b 3 Jan
If you're connecting over Tor you IP is hidden.
A lot of great lightning privacy content has been shared on SN: #375022/related
Another big privacy concern is accidentally linking your identity to your node which can happen a variety of ways like opening channels with KYC'd funds or generating invoices that pay to your node in contexts where your identity is known. tl;dr Receiver privacy on LN is pretty weak so plan accordingly. Sender privacy is excellent however.
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Awesome list of resources, just what I was looking for!
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You can use a VM with the host on an always-on VPN.
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If you're in the Lightning game for non-custodial payment systems, Tor will suffice. But in case you'll see more routing going through, and that usually starts at ~15-25 channels+, you may see Tor as a risk factor for availability and speed.
To avoid going hybrid and hence doxing your home-IP - as further explained here, I'd recommend checking out Tunnel⚡️Sats or delve into the FAQ there to evaluate options how to setup your own VPS (which often comes with KYC again, unfortuntely).
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