Long-tail cryptocurrency is 51% attacked: Vertcoin edition

“The Capture of Rickett’s Battery” by Sidney King, 1964 (oil on plywood). This painting depicts the struggle on Henry Hill over Captain Rickett’s Battery(Company I, 1st US Artillery) during the afternoon of the First Battle of Manassas, July 21, 1861.  The painiting is displayed in the Henry Hill Visitor Center at Manassas National Battlefield Park.

Quick Take

  • Lower cryptocurrency prices and decreased mining activity has resulted in vulnerabilities in the security of small crypto-networks as seen over the year
  • The latest project to be attacked is Vertcoin, with over $100,000 in double spends

With the fall in cryptocurrency prices and ensuing drops in mining hash rate (as marginally profitable miners shut down), crypto-networks remain more vulnerable to attack than earlier this year.

While hash rate may go up in absolute terms due to improved ASIC efficiency (in August, Bitcoin hash rate was up 4x from January 1st), hash rate is just a proxy for network security.