The BSV network has recently been tested by a series of malicious attacks, and it has responded brilliantly, displaying the superior capability of its detection tools, as well as a professional approach to blockchain. Bitcoin Association, the Switzerland-based global industry organization advancing the enterprise adoption of the BSV blockchain, has released answers to frequently asked questions (FAQs) about the attacks in order to provide more details as to what actually happened.
“On June 24, 2021, and then again on July 1, 6, and 9, an unknown miner operating (as an apparent impersonator) under the ‘Zulupool’ moniker engaged in malicious block re-organization attacks on the Bitcoin SV (BSV) network. This type of attack, known as a ‘block withholding’ attack, involves a malicious actor creating a chain of competing blocks—re-written to the benefit of the attacker, i.e., containing double spends—in parallel with the correct chain. These malicious blocks are created in secret then released all at once to orphan the correct blocks from honest nodes,” the Association explained.
The recent attacks against BSV blockchain (just like against any financial system) are illegal. We respond accordingly.@BitcoinAssn & @BitcoinSVNode teams have been working to investigate, implement response measures, talk with exchanges + more.
However, what comes across as attempts to double-spend BSV coins through block reorganizations have failed, and no innocent party has reported having had their BSV stolen. This is because reactive and preventive measures were immediately implemented, which includes fork detection tools that allow all partners and participants within the BSV ecosystem to move promptly when encountering these kinds of attacks. Since these security measures were put in place, no other attacks have occurred.
Although the exact motives behind the attacks have not yet been identified, it may be that they were directed towards damaging the reputation of the different chains of Bitcoin – as BTC and BCH have also been recently attacked – and not double-spending. In fact, it is likely that the same attacker is responsible for the March block reorganization attacks on the BCHA chain.
“Just a few months ago, an actor also using the same ‘Zulupool’ moniker carried out a deep block reorganization of the Bitcoin ABC (BCHA) chain. While we cannot independently confirm that it is the same party who is behind the recent attacks on BSV, the BCHA chain incident had similarities in methodologies and characteristics with the reorganization attacks on BSV, and also used the same Zulupool name; these factors strongly suggest it is the same actor,” Bitcoin Association revealed.
“While no direct losses or thefts have been attributed to the attack on the BSV blockchain, the response by exchanges to restrict trading activities and the attending reputational harm caused by the attacks could indicate that the detrimental intangible impact was the primary goal, not a secondary repercussion,” The Association added.
Transactions and block size pulling away from Blockstream Core and BCH.
And attempted attacks on the network a few weeks ago netted zero profits and just wasted a bunch of the attacker’s money.
Real use, real utility, real price discovery. #AuthenticBitcoin #BSV $BSV pic.twitter.com/aws4XJC9qh
Bitcoin Association and its representatives have established open and constant communication with exchanges to be able to address all concerns regarding the attacks, as well as to restore all BSV services, which include deposits, withdrawals, and trading, at the soonest possible time. In parallel with this, the Association is implementing a zero-tolerance policy against illegal attacks that aim to defraud or harm the network by collecting and documenting all evidence and filing a criminal complaint—setting standards as to how to deal with these kinds of malicious attacks. They should not be glorified nor ignored, but rather, they should be met with both technical and legal action in order to mitigate losses and prevent future attacks.
“Blockchains cannot themselves prevent bad actors. But by working together with exchanges, miners, transaction processors, and other industry participants, collectively we can facilitate a safe and trusted environment for users of the Bitcoin SV network. There have been prior attacks on other blockchains, and it is time that industry participants demonstrate that such attacks are in fact illegal—just as attacks against other financial systems are illegal—and will be met with legal enforcement action,” the Association stated.