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Proof of Authority

The Proof of Authority (PoA) consensus mechanism relies on validators staking their reputation, instead of offering up a resource like computing power (PoW) or a financial stake (PoS). Compared to PoW and PoS networks which allow anyone to join without revealing their identity, PoA validators must be known and trusted, thus PoA conseus mechanisms are better suited for private blockchains. As a limitation, PoA validators tend to be a small group and more heavily centralized.

Note: These are non-technical definitions meant for a general audience and should not be used as legal definition
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