Coinbase has released a story stating that Ethereum Classic (ETC) is under 51% attack and that blockchain reorganisation and double spending had taken place multiple times recently. Initially to the tune of $460K, the figure has now increased to a possible $1.1M of double-spent ETC.
Ethereum Classic (ETC) initially responded with scepticism and at one point put out a tweet claiming that it did not look like double spending. It was their belief that the anomaly was caused by unrelated and non-malicious testing, and “selfish mining”. As the facts rolled in, multiple double spend attacks via multiple chain reorganisations were allegedly discovered.
Ethereum Classic have since deleted their original Tweet which stated that no double spend was likely.
As the investigation and mitigation continues, users have been recommended to significantly increase their block confirmation times to 400-4000+. Some exchanges have halted processing ETC transactions for the time being until the situation is resolved.
Ethereum (ETH) users are unaffected. Many are taking this incident as an indication that current Proof of Work implementations are not secure enough.
Naturally, the news has hit Ethereum Classic’s price hard; currently down 7% on the day. We will continue to cover the story as it unfolds.
Are 51% Attacks avoidable in decentralized networks?
Is this a sign of the weakness of Proof-of-Work, or a reality we need to accept and mitigate?
Let us know in the comments section below.