Ethereum Classic Suffers Second 51% Attack in a Week


The Ethereum Classic (ETC) blockchain has experienced a second 51% attack. This is the second one that takes place in a week.

August 6, 2020 | AtoZ MarketsEthereum Classic has been in the wars again with a second 51% attack within a week. This incursion has brought the security of the network under the spotlight again, though ETC prices remain largely unmoved at the time of writing.

Ethereum Classic suffers another 51% attack in five days

Bitfly, the parent company of Ethermine mining pool, reported the attack on Thursday morning. Binance also confirmed the reorganization of more than 4,000 blocks on ETC on block number 10935622. As a result, both Bitfly and Binance have halted ETC payouts, withdrawals, and deposits.

Last week, the Ethereum Classic blockchain was contentiously split due to the actions of a single miner. At the time, ETClabs founder James Wo replied to reports of the issue, adding that exchanges needed to pause deposits and withdrawals immediately.

In that attack, 807,260 ETC (worth about $5.6 million) was double spent, according to blockchain data company Bitquery. The value of today’s attack is not immediately apparent. The malicious actor reportedly spent roughly $192,000 on renting hash power from Nicehash to execute the attack.

Buterin suggests a switch to PoS

Vitalik Buterin, co-founder of Ethereum, today tweeted that ETC should move to a proof-of-stake (PoS) consensus algorithm from the current proof-of-work (PoW) mechanism. “Even given its risk-averse culture, at this point making the jump seems lower-risk than not making it,” said Buterin.

ETC price impact

At the time of writing, there has been very little movement on ETC prices, which are down less than one percent on the day.

There was a 4% tumble a few hours ago, but prices have remained relatively stable at just over $7. ETC has done very little this year, ranging between $5.5 and $7.5 for the past three months.

It certainly has not enjoyed the big price rally that its big brother has recently undergone, and is unlikely to in the future unless network security can be hardened against these basic proof-of-work attacks.

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