Here’s Why A 51% Attack On Ethereum 2.0 Wouldn’t Be ‘Fatal’, According To Vitalik Buterin

Here’s Why A 51% Attack On Ethereum 2.0 Wouldn’t Be ‘Fatal’, According To Vitalik Buterin

The topic comes hot on the heels of Yearn Finance’s yETH vault success. Since its launch a couple of days ago, the product has already attracted over 335,000 ether. The CIO at Arcane Assets, Eric Wall, alluded that yETH strategists would likely take advantage of the fact that they controlled a huge amount of ETH enough to execute an attack on ethereum 2.0. 

In response, the co-founder of Ethereum, Vitalik Buterin, explained in a series of tweets that a perpetrator who initiates a 51% attack on ETH 2.0 proof of stake (PoS) would only be able to attack the network once before being slashed or soft-forked, subsequently losing the coins they would require to attack again.

Buterin went on to draw parallels between proof-of-stake (PoS) and proof-of-work (PoW) with regards to susceptibility to malicious attacks. According to him, bad actors can successfully pull off multiple attacks on PoW blockchains since there is no way to delete the attacker’s hardware without deleting other people’s hardware. This, per Buterin, is “an underrated key fundamental advantage of PoS over PoW.”

Ethereum Classic’s Terrible, No Good Month

August was a horrible month for Ethereum’s spawn, Ethereum Classic, which uses a proof-of-work consensus algorithm just like bitcoin. The network suffered three different 51% attacks in the course of last month. The first attack happened on August 1 and resulted in a direct double spend of the Ethereum Classic (ETC) cryptocurrency.

Ethereum Classic endured a second 51% attack only five days later, causing over 4000 blocks to be reorganized. At the time, Buterin suggested that Ethereum Classic should just transition to a proof-of-stake network to avoid more future attacks. Unfortunately, the Ethereum fork was 51% attacked yet again on August 30, causing a reorganization of over 7000 blocks and loss of ETC tokens.


Moving forward, Ethereum Classic Labs is considering taking legal action against Slovenia-based mining company NiceHash which allegedly provided the bad actors with the hashrate needed to gain control of the Ethereum Classic network.

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The views expressed in the article are wholly those of the author and do not represent those of, nor should they be attributed to, ZyCrypto. This article is not meant to give financial advice. Please carry out your own research before investing in any of the various cryptocurrencies available.