ETC Cooperative, IOHK publish analysis on preventing 51% attacks

  • 21 October 2020, Wednesday, 05:06

Blockchain research and development startup IOHK, and Ethereum Classic Cooperative today announced a collaboration to provide ETC community with solutions that aimed to improve security of the network, especially after ETC had been 51% attacked three times already. In a release shared with AMBCrypto on Tuesday, the two entities analyzed the vulnerability of the ETC network to 51% attacks, and found that the Checkpointing and Timestamping solutions would provide “proven” security against such attacks.

While the Checkpointing service ensures that the protocol remains unaltered with regards to mining, Timestamping further decentralizes the process by relying on Bitcoin. ETC miners would have to run a full Bitcoin node to retrieve and verify timestamps, as well as own some BTC to create timestamping transactions.

In a report, the analysis revealed flaws in the ETC Labs-proposed ‘MESS’ solution. After suffering three 51% attacks in August, ETC had implemented the Modified Exponential Subjective Scoring (MESS) system to mitigate 51% attacks that were taking place on the network:

Great news for ETC Miners!

MESS Network Security Solution has been implemented on block 11 380 000

We've reduced the block maturation time for Ethereum Classic to 500 new blocks (approx. 2 hours).


— 2Miners (@pool2miners) October 11, 2020

Charles Hoskinson, CEO of IOHK, stated:

We believe that challenging times call for collaboration, not competition, which is why this paper isn’t just for the ETC community, but is designed to educate the wider crypto community on how to mitigate against future attacks on other proof of work chains. The blockchain space is not only large enough to sustain collaboration, but actually needsincreasing levels of collaboration in order to reach its goals of widening and democratising global access to financial services.”

Bob Summerwill, Executive Director of the Ethereum Cooperative, said:

We hope this analysis, along with the proposed decentralized treasury, is the first step in a move away from centralised leadership and decision-making, to a model which uses the multitude of talented brains in the ETC ecosystem, allowing technical and other ecosystem proposals to be essentially peer reviewed, improving them and ensuring they are sound.