[Resource Topic] 2017/230: Smart Contracts Make Bitcoin Mining Pools Vulnerable

Welcome to the resource topic for 2017/230

Smart Contracts Make Bitcoin Mining Pools Vulnerable

Authors: Yaron Velner, Jason Teutsch, Loi Luu


Despite their incentive structure flaws, mining pools account for more than 95% of Bitcoin’s computation power. This paper introduces an attack against mining pools in which a malicious party pays pool members to withhold their solutions from their pool operator. We show that an adversary with a tiny amount of computing power and capital can execute this attack. Smart contracts enforce the malicious party’s payments, and therefore miners need neither trust the attacker’s intentions nor his ability to pay. Assuming pool members are rational, an adversary with a single mining ASIC can, in theory, destroy all big mining pools without losing any money (and even make some profit).

ePrint: https://eprint.iacr.org/2017/230

See all topics related to this paper.

Feel free to post resources that are related to this paper below.

Example resources include: implementations, explanation materials, talks, slides, links to previous discussions on other websites.

For more information, see the rules for Resource Topics .