Blockchains came to offer a totally decentralized financial system and under the premise of offering true security . This has led to the gestation of five myths about it that are not entirely true.
The blockchain is unhackable
Much has been said about the blockchain being unhackable, but it is not entirely true. Although it presents a high degree of security, it is not totally secure.
Bitcoin has shown that it has major errors that can endanger the capital of millions of people. One of them was the deactivation of their OP-CODES that brought major security problems, but fortunately they were not taken advantage of by hackers.
Another case in the aforementioned cryptocurrency was the Netsplit attack that allowed double spending to be generated, even in one-confirmation transactions. This was known as the Bitcoin Killer.
What can save us from all this? Well, the community itself that will detect and correct the errors that arise. And if that doesn’t happen, the community can find a consensus and return to the block where the problem occurred.
The blockchain is absolutely immutable
Blockchains are not immutable, they can be rectified and modified as in a “51% Attack”. This attack can significantly modify any blockchain, no matter how many attempts we make to prevent it.
Ethereum Classic and Bitcoin Gold have fallen prey to this attack.
The immutability of the blochain is under certain conditions . The key is that no one has the highest power within their nodes. That is to say that it is properly distributed so that no one has the ringing voice.
But even a blockchain can be rewritten with or without the need for consensus and in unclear situations like the case of The DAO on Ethereum .
All blockchains are highly decentralized
This decentralization is often used in many projects for free, but not all of them are like that.
Luke Dashjr, one of Bitcoin’s biggest developers , noted that there is still a long way to go to reach the “safe zone of decentralization.” Place where users resort to their own nodes instead of those of third parties to carry out their operations.
Other projects like Ripple, Stellar, Tether, Bitcoin SV or Tron miss out on this decentralization. Despite appealing to the term, they are not as decentralized as they say they are.
An example of this is Craig Wright ‘s rationale for increasing Bitcoin SV’s block size to 2 gigabytes . This will have a great impact on the security and distribution of the nodes in the long term, leading to a constant and iron decentralization.
A blockchain does not have to be decentralized, they are not synonyms.
Cryptography makes the blockchain secure
Cryptography is the foundation of the blockchain, but it is constantly being broken.
An example of this myth is IOTA , which is based on DAG or Directed Acyclic Graphs and uses a cryptographic function that was considered secure . But a hacker managed to break the algorithm affecting thousands of users with the theft of their funds and access to the seeds of their wallets. The network was down for 14 days before the problem was resolved.
Bitcoin also had a similar case due to Gregory Maxwell’s distrust of OpenSSL , abandoning its use to build his own cryptographic library because it had many security problems that affected thousands of services on the Internet.
Smart contracts are the ultimate programming tool
Smart contracts are not necessarily secure because they are developed within the blockchain and are subject to public scrutiny that can be used by those who detect flaws in them.
The DeFi sector has been the target of millionaire thefts. In addition, once you upload it, it is impossible to delete it due to the immutability of the blockchain and its correction becomes much more complex. In the meantime, the door for hackers remains open until it is resolved.
Smart contracts are very powerful, but there is still a lot of work to be done for their security.
Javier Molina: “I find everything related to the audit and the kinds of “ratings” that are being given interesting”
We asked our expert and professor in the cryptocurrency, NFT and metaverse investment course, Javier Molina, for his appreciation of these myths.
-What other myths can we find about the blockchain?
Well, I’d say they’ve been picked up pretty well here. Perhaps add that they are “easy” to understand, since nothing is so far from reality. It is one thing to understand the great traces and another to see the depth of the technology.
-What advances have been made to provide greater security to smart contracts?
I find everything related to the audit and the kinds of “ratings” that are being given interesting. It is a good tool for users to know what level of “security” they have.
Rachel Maga is a technology journalist currently working at Globe Live Media agency. She has been in the Technology Journalism field for over 5 years now. Her life’s biggest milestone is the inside tour of Tesla Industries, which was gifted to her by the legend Elon Musk himself.