A crypto asset address is a string of alphanumeric characters that a person can share with anyone who wants to send funds. A Vanity Address is a type of cryptocurrency address that contains a personalized human-readable message.
A traditional bitcoin address can be displayed as follows: ‘3P4glGKlpKJrgvj4n7GBgnLNqBdjVgf3jx’. Vanity Address bitcoin on the other hand, which should be private, can be created as: ‘3LoveBPzzD72PUXLzCkYAtGFYmK5Vynr33’.
Producing a Vanity pattern requires users to generate and test millions of candidate private keys until a bitcoin address with the desired private pattern is found. An address on a network like Bitcoin is effectively a representation of the public key. The address is derived from the public key using a one-way cryptographic hash function.
In the case of Bitcoin, the hashing functions used to generate bitcoin addresses from public keys are: Secure Hash Algorithm 256 (SHA-256) and RACE Integrity Primitives Evaluation Message Digest 160 (RIPEMD-160). Starting with the public key, it is first used as input to the SHA-256 hash function to generate a hashed output. This hash is then run through the RIPEMD-160 hash function to generate a bitcoin address.
For information, with Bitcoin, the public key is derived from the private key using Elliptic Curve Cryptography. This type of cryptography allows the creation of one-way functions, i.e. functions that are easy to compute in one direction, but difficult to perform in the opposite direction. In crypto networks such as Bitcoin, this one-way function takes the private key as input to generate the public key, which forms the output. Individuals can distribute their public keys knowing that no one can reverse the one-way function and compute the private key from the public key.
The process of generating a Vanity pattern basically involves randomly selecting a private key, deriving a public key, deriving a bitcoin address, and then checking to see if the bitcoin address matches the desired Vanity pattern. Otherwise, this process is repeated millions of times until the desired pattern is found. The private key that controls the Vanity Address can be used by the owner in exactly the same way as any other address. You can’t find the private key easier from Vanity Address than with any other address.