A Blockchain, or distributed ledger, is a technological protocol that enables data to be exchanged directly between different contracting parties within a network without the need for intermediaries. Each transaction is communicated to all network nodes, and once verified and confirmed, is added to an immutable transaction chain.
Blockchain Security Challenges
Blockchain isn’t perfect. There are ways that cyber criminals can manipulate blockchain security vulnerabilities and cause severe damage. Here are four common ways that hackers can attack blockchain technology.
- Routing attacks. Blockchains depend on immense data transfers performed in real-time. Resourceful hackers can intercept the data on its way to ISPs (Internet Service Providers). Unfortunately, blockchain users don’t notice anything amiss.
- 51% attacks. Large-scale public blockchains use a massive amount of computing power to perform mining. However, a group of unethical miners can seize control over a ledger if they can bring together enough resources to acquire more than 50% of a blockchain network’s mining power. Private blockchains aren’t susceptible to 51% attacks, however.
- Sybil attacks. Named for the book that deals with multiple personality disorder, Sybil attacks flood the target network with an overwhelming amount of false identities, crashing the system.
- Phishing attacks. This classic hacker tactic works with blockchain as well. Phishing is a scam wherein cyber-criminals send false but convincing-looking emails to wallet owners, asking for their credentials.
The first step in blockchain security is smart contract audits to identify vulnerabilities in the smart contract. Through Hadess smart contract audit service, our industry-leading audit methodology and tooling includes a review of the code’s logic, with a mathematical approach to ensure the program works as intended. After an initial review, Hadess shares its findings, and recommendations on how to resolve the issues, with the client. This process ensures that the client is aware of the issues and has the information needed to fix them to ensure the smoothness and correctness of the contract.
What is Cryptojacking?
Cryptojacking is unauthorized use of a victim’s machine to mine digital currencies by installing a binary on the machine, or by using an in-browser script. The mining code works in the background while the unaware victim is using their End-Point Devices. E.g. Desktop, Laptop, Tablet, Phone, Gaming Console etc.
A Website Administrator can add a mining script to her webpage, with or without informing users. Website owners may do this to monetize their sites, especially when they have been blacklisted or blocked by standard advertising platforms.