Gate.io Gets Funds Returned after Ethereum Classic (ETC) Attack
The exchange keeps the precautions in place, requiring 4,000 confirmations and monitoring deposit activity.
Gate.io, one of the exchanges affected by the 51% attack on the Ethereum Classic (ETC) network, has had some of the coins returned, as disclosed in a recent statement. The still unidentified attacker apparently returned ETC worth around $100,000, a fraction of the estimated total losses of $1 million.
“We still don't know the reason. If the attacker didn't run it for profit, he might be a white hacker who wanted to remind people [of] the risks in blockchain consensus and hashing power security,” the exchange team explained.
The Ethereum Classic network is still 100% “nicehashable” based on Crypto51 statistics, meaning it is still possible to buy mining power for attacks. But this time, the assault may have to be more suspended to pass the exchange’s confirmation requirements. Confirmations, or the communication between nodes, take longer, sometimes hours, before a transaction credits balance on the trading platform. Currently, it costs $4,560 to attack Ethereum Classic for one hour.
“Based on our analysis, the hashing power of ETC network is still not strong enough and it's still possible to rent enough hashing power to launch another 51% attack. Gate.io has raised the ETC confirmation number to 4000 and launched a strict 51% detect for enhanced protection. We also suggest other ETC exchanges to take actions to protect the trader from blockchain rollback/reorg,” warned Gate.IO.
Recently, the Ethereum Classic network also saw anomalous reward activity, with miners receiving extraordinary gas returns in several transactions. It is unclear whether any relation to an attack exists.
The usual payout of 4 ETC per block has been continuously inflated to above 200 ETC per block, coming out of block reward fees. Paying a high fee for a transaction guarantees it would be included in a block and mined as valid, which skeptics see as a way of passing transactions as legitimate in another attack attempt. The Ethereum Classic network is otherwise cheap to use, with only around 77,000 transactions in 24 hours, so a regular event of network congestion does not explain the high gas fees.
The ETC price remained stagnant after the attack, sliding relatively slowly to $4.25. The asset has lost its appeal despite being traded on Coinbase and has garnered criticism even though it was seen as one of the more solid, trustworthy digital coins.