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Pentagon Flags Concerns Over Cryptocurrency Bitcoin, Ethereum Security

Manoj Nair




Cryptocurrency has always been at the cross hairs of Central Banks and financial institutions. The fact that Cryptocurrency is a decentralized Finance regimen which challenges the established and long running financial regimens with fiat currency issued by Central Banks of different nations is bound to face opposition.

Pentagon made this damning observation after a report by DARPA which was commissioned to analyze the extent to which blockchains are truly decentralized. Darpa had authorized ‘Trail of Bits‘, a security company to focus primarily on Bitcoin and Ethereum. The company found jarring security flaws in the blockchain system.

Pentagon report indicts both the number one and two crypto coin of not being completely decentralized. Pentagon also stumbled upon the fact that a set of four entities in the case of Bitcoin, and two entities in the case of Ethereum is all that is needed to wipe out all traces of past transactions.

Key Security Apprehension In Cryptocurrency Mining

The mining process has also attracted a lot of flak in the Pentagon report. It found that there is no provisions for punishing the dishonest miners. Worse the Stratum protocol used in coordination within mining pools is unencrypted and unauthenticated. Pentagon also found that BTC was 51% more vulnerable to cyber attacks and a Sybil attack.

The Pentagon report also highlighted the fact that 21% of Bitcoin nodes are employing a version whose vulnerability was known since June 2021. Another critical chink in the armor is the fact that 60 % of Bitcoin traffic is routed through three ISPs. Blockchain services have been regularly hacked due to a non-blockchain vulnerability.

The report also indicts the number two cryptocurrency, Ethereum which supports Turing complete on-chain execution. The Pentagon report considers that such blockchains cannot stop smart contracts from being promoted. This leaves such blockchains to face the same trust issues that are faced within a centralized system of finance.

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