Resource 51Crypto claims that his researchers were able to calculate «the exact cost of the attack 51%» on the largest cryptocurrency.
51Crypto said that he was able to calculate the cost of a one-hour attack 51%, and the number of the required capacity of hash that the attacker can buy with the help of services that provide similar services — such as NiceHash. The site has made estimates of the cost of such an attack for the largest cryptocurrency — bitcoin, ether, bitchesa, litecoin, monero and other digital assets.
The results if you believe that they are correct, at first glance impressive. Bytecoin — on CryptoNight coin with a market capitalization of more than $1 billion, may be subjected to attack 51% by leased facilities hashing, which will cost only $557.
For a similar attack to the new network Litecoin Cash resulting from hard forks Litecoin need only $515 for a one-hour attack, while the attack Bitcoin needs $554 000, and Ethereum — $360 000. In a statement the site said:
«We carried out these calculations not in order to inspire the attackers to such attacks and to help their implementation. We want people to understand the seriousness of the problem and began to look for ways to solve it».
These data came about a week after the publication is devoted to the problem of the message, which said about the vulnerability to attacks 51% of the coins using the algorithm Proof-of-Work (PoW). Brazilian researcher found that job Ethereum Classic (ETC) can be sabotaged for $55 million, and the potential profit from the attacks will total $ 1 billion. Despite this, the network recently announced that it plans to continue to follow the PoW algorithm without switching to PoS.
In response to the statement 51Crypto, the Creator of Litecoin Charlie Lee (Charlie Lee) expressed surprise, noting that the Brazilian study «simplified» the launch of such an attack, which is even easier to implement by reducing the overhead of rent.
«Do not trust the PoW coins, which are not dominant blockchains of the corresponding algorithm», — he advised.
The creators of the list also say that the goal of their research is «to shed light on the risk of attacks 51% on smaller cryptocurrencies». In particular, the authors refer to the recent attack on the Bitcoin network Gold, which was the result of hard forks of Bitcoin, after which the attackers left 388 000 BTG.
In addition, last week, was again attacked by the bitcoin Verge. Because hash rate Verge at that time was divided between the five algorithms, the attacker was relatively easy to attack 51% with one of these algorithms, sending all mined coins to yourself as a reward.
Despite the seeming accuracy, this calculation does not take into account the obvious fact: the power required to attack large blockchains, rent is impossible. For example, to obtain more than half of the hashing power of the Bitcoin network it is necessary to run about half a million ASIC miners, Antminer similar to S9. For an attack on Ethereum, respectively, a few million cards.
Of course. this amount of equipment is not available at all rental services together, and with the increasing demand, the rental price will start to grow rapidly. Therefore, the attack on major blackany can only be considered hypothetically, but developers and investors PoW-cryptocurrency outside the TOP 10 should think about protection against short-term attacks.