- ViaBTC’s dominance over the ZCash mining landscape triggers potential 51% attack alarms.
- Coinbase maneuvers to secure ZCash transactions and trading by amping up confirmation thresholds and imposing trade restrictions.
In an unfolding drama in the crypto sphere, ViaBTC has clawed control over more than half of ZCash’s hash power, unveiling the menacing specter of a 51% attack. Reacting with the agility expected in such critical scenarios, Coinbase has strategically fortified its defense mechanisms around ZCash transactions.
Coinbase Cranks Up Security Measures
On a recent Wednesday, Coinbase delineated in a blog post the precarious situation that has emerged with ViaBTC’s newfound dominance in ZCash’s mining ecosystem. The crypto mining behemoth has surpassed the 51% threshold of the network’s hash power, which if manipulated, can potentially steer the ZCash blockchain down a calamitous path.
In a bid to cocoon its user base from any impending havoc, Coinbase has dialed up the confirmation threshold for ZCash transactions to 110 blocks, extending the deposit time from a manageable 40 minutes to a more cautious 2.5 hours. In parallel, it has thrust ZCash trading into a limit-only mode, a prudent move aimed at mitigating the ripples of market volatility. The discussions among Coinbase, ViaBTC, and the Electric Coin Company are ongoing, forging a dialogue to navigate through this rough patch.
Decoding 51% Attack: The Menace Lurking in Centralized Hash Power
To the uninitiated, ZCash, much like its elder cousin Bitcoin, employs the Proof-of-Work (PoW) consensus algorithm. In this realm, miners vie to solve cryptographic puzzles, a process pivotal for validating transactions and appending new blocks to the blockchain. The hash rate of a network is the aggregate of computational efforts by all miners, and this collective power holds the key to maintaining the integrity and security of the system.
However, when a single entity like ViaBTC garners more than half of the network’s hash power, it’s akin to handing over the keys of the kingdom. With this magnitude of control, ViaBTC could hypothetically reverse transactions or indulge in double-spending—the act of spending the same coins multiple times. Moreover, they could halt the validation of new transactions, creating a chokehold on the payment processing mechanism.
The drama encircling ZCash has cast a spotlight on the perils that come tethered to undue concentration of mining power. As the narrative unfolds, the crypto community watches with bated breath while market players like Coinbase race against time to secure the fortress before a potential storm hits.