The Ethereum Network was the target of a coordinated attack in recent days, affecting client platform Parity, which threatened to cause significant downtime.
Malicious Attack to Undermine Ethereum Network
The attack began on December 30 when invalid blocks were sent to the network, which caused node operators using the Parity client, which handles over $50 billion USD in assets and underpins some of the most ambitious projects on the Ethereum blockchain. The invalid blocks caused the node operators using the Parity client to lose sync with the network.
Sergio Demian Lerner, a cryptocurrency security consultant, explained the nature of the Ethereum attack on Twitter: “The attack is simple: you send to a Parity node a block with invalid transactions, but valid header (borrowed from another block) The node will mark the block header as invalid and ban this block header forever but the header is still valid.” Parity Technology was quick to react to the attack and subsequently issued a series of network upgrades to protect against it.
While the source of the attack and the attacker’s motives remain unclear, it would appear as though it was an attempt to undermine the credibility of Ethereum and its Parity client. Unlike most crypto attacks that attempt to exploit digital assets in order to profit financially, this attack was on the network itself and did not carry a profit. Notably, the attack came less than two weeks after Parity said it would no longer support the Ethereum client and was in the process of delegating maintenance to a distributed autonomous organization.
Google Lifts Ethereum Extension Play Store Ban
In other Ethereum news, Google has lifted its Play Store ban on browser extension MetaMask, which includes a built-in crypto wallet enabling Chrome to run Ethereum-based decentralized applications, or dApps, without needing to operate a full Ethereum node. Google banned MetaMask in December after reportedly mistaking it for a mining app. The news coincides with Binance.US’s announcement that it was opening beta testing of its iOS app.
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