Peppercoin Micropayments

  • Ronald L. Rivest
Conference paper

DOI: 10.1007/978-3-540-27809-2_2

Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 3110)
Cite this paper as:
Rivest R.L. (2004) Peppercoin Micropayments. In: Juels A. (eds) Financial Cryptography. FC 2004. Lecture Notes in Computer Science, vol 3110. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg


We present the ”Peppercoin” method for processing micropayments efficiently. With this method, a fraction of the micropayments received are determined, via a procedure known as ”cryptographic selection,” to qualify for upgrade to a macropayment. The merchant deposits the upgraded micropayments as macropayments, and merely logs locally the non-qualifying micropayments. In this manner, the merchant transforms a large collection of small micropayments into a smaller collection of macropayments, of the same total expected value. The merchant pays much less for processing the resulting macropayments, since there are fewer of them. Consumers are billed for exactly the amount they spend, based on auxiliary information recorded in each micropayment. The method is highly secure, and compatible with existing payment mechanisms such as credit cards.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ronald L. Rivest
    • 1
  1. 1.Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory Massachusetts Institute of TechnologyCambridgeUSA

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