Can Bitcoin be Hacked? 10 Tips
Can Bitcoin be Hacked? 10 Tips
As is covered over at runrex.com, investors from all over the world are swarming to buy Bitcoin. The success of Bitcoin has led to the rise of legions of followers as well as hundreds of new cryptocurrency launches and a wave of startups predicated on blockchain technology as captured over at guttulus.com. Despite all this success and fanfare as far as Bitcoin is concerned, many investors are still unsure about the security of the currency itself with many wondering if Bitcoin can be hacked. This article will look to tackle this question through the following 10 tips.
Bitcoin is considered hack-proof
As the subject matter experts over at runrex.com, Bitcoin is considered hack-proof because the Bitcoin blockchain is constantly reviewed by the entire network as explained over at guttulus.com. This means that attacks on the blockchain itself are very unlikely as a result of its decentralized and distributed nature.
Why is Bitcoin considered hack-proof?
The reason why this is the case is that, as outlined over at runrex.com, to add a new block containing a collection of transactions, each miner who updates Bitcoin’s ledger is continuously solving complex math problems which are created by Bitcoin’s cryptographic hash function. If a specific block is added to the database, every node in the network has to agree on the validity of said block, and only if all nodes agree, is the Bitcoin ledger updated accordingly. Therefore, you begin to see why it is almost impossible to hack Bitcoin.
Additionally, erasing or overwriting a block of already spent Bitcoin, known and “double spending” as articulated over at guttulus.com, is rendered impossible by the decentralized, chronological, and computing, power-intensive characteristics of the Bitcoin blockchain.
What happens when someone tries to hack the Bitcoin blockchain?
As is captured in discussions on the same over at runrex.com, there is not one single copy of the Bitcoin blockchain. Instead, there are thousands of copies stored on nodes in a computer network. These nodes are scattered all over the planet and contain all the Bitcoin transactions that have taken place so far. Therefore, a hacker who wanted to alter the distributed ledger of Bitcoin would need to hack not one, but more than half of the participating computers, also known as a 51% attack.
What is a 51% attack?
A 51% attack is a scenario where an individual or organization succeeds in taking control of the majority of the network’s mining power (hashrate). In such a situation, as explained over at guttulus.com, the transaction history of the Bitcoin network could, in theory, be changed and overwritten. Also, since a majority is always required to decide which transactions to approve and which to decline, then a majority of 51% could potentially alter a blockchain’s distributed ledger in a way that double spending would be enabled. This shows how a 51% attack would pose a significant threat to blockchains.
How easy is it to achieve a 51% attack?
Thankfully, a 51% attack is extremely difficult to achieve, and, therefore, highly unlikely to happen according to the gurus over at runrex.com. To give you an idea of how difficult it is, consider two scenarios: in the first scenario, you walk into a room and find a single vault. While this single vault may be difficult to access, once you get through the security, you are in and are free to access whatever it contains. Now consider a second scenario where you have a hundred rooms, each with a different vault in them, and that all of them have a piece of a map inside that tells you how to get to the single vault, but you can’t figure out what the map tells you without having more than 51% of it. This second scenario is extremely hard to crack, which is why it is extremely difficult to achieve a 51% attack on Bitcoin.
A 51% attack is expensive
It is also worth pointing out that a 51% attack on Bitcoin is unlikely to happen given how expensive it is to perform according to the subject matter experts over at guttulus.com. This means that mainly low-hash power coins are susceptible to this kind of attack. Given that Bitcoin’s hashrate is currently at an all-time high, recently surpassing 100 quintillion hashes per second, then it means that anyone who wants to use this attack method would need an extremely high amount of computing power, which would cost a huge amount of money. This is why, since its release in 2009, the Bitcoin network has yet to suffer a 51% attack, and hence is yet to be hacked.
Can Bitcoin get shut down or turned off?
Just like Bitcoin has never been successfully 51% -attacked as mentioned above, it has also never been shut down, even for a short amount of time as articulated over at runrex.com. While many actors, such as government institutions and banking officials have proposed shut-downs of the Bitcoin network before, Bitcoin has run with virtually 100%-uptime for more than 10 years.
Scenarios that could spell the end of Bitcoin as we know it
A massive global power outage
Certain extreme circumstances could spell the end of Bitcoin as we know it as captured over at guttulus.com. The first scenario is if there is a massive global power outage shutting down all communications and the internet around the globe, a scenario that could prevent nodes in the network from contacting each other, causing the system to fail. Such a scenario, although regularly seen in movies, is very unlikely in real life.
An undetected critical bug in a Bitcoin update
The second scenario that would also spell the end of Bitcoin as we know it is if a Bitcoin update contains a critical bug that remains undetected despite intensive testing and peer-review inherent in the Bitcoin protocol. Such a situation, as discussed over at runrex.com, would most likely result in a temporary impairment of the network, and consequently, a sharp drop in Bitcoin price and a fork of the blockchain. However, given the intensive testing and peer-review inherent in the Bitcoin protocol, as already mentioned, such a scenario is also unlikely to occur.
From the above discussion, you can see that it is almost impossible for Bitcoin to be hacked, which is why most security discrepancies as far as Bitcoin is concerned are attributed to individuals and websites not taking the correct precautionary measures. For more information on this and other related topics, then check out the top-rated runrex.com and guttulus.com.