Verge (XVG) Hard Forks After 51% Attack Nets Malicious Miner $1 Million

Ali Raza
  • A malicious manager managed to rake in $1 million through a 51% attack on Verge's blockchain
  • The cryptocurrency's team launched a hard fork to fix bugs the miner was taking advantage of, but the "fix" may not be effective.
  • The hacker claims there are other bugs out there

A so-called 51 percent attack allowed malicious miners to rake in much as $1 million worth of Verge (XVG) before the cryptocurrency’s developers managed to fix the bugs allowing the miners to attack. The solution was an ‘accidental’ hard fork.

Verge had been under attack for three hours when a post on the BitcoinTalk forum appeared. The post was published by Supernova mining pool’s admin OCminer. In it, OCminer reported the attack on Verge’s blockchain, as he recognized the 51 percent attack.

According to OCminer, the attack was possible because of bugs in Verge’s code. He explained:

“Due to several bugs in the XVG code, you can exploit this feature by mining blocks with a spoofed timestamp. When you submit a mined block (as a malicious miner or pool) you simply set a false timestamp to this block one hour ago and XVG will then “think” the last block mined on that algo was one hour ago.”


The result were roughly 10,000 new blocks produced on the cryptocurrency’s blockchain, all using the same algorithm. The attack supposedly stopped soon after OCMiner’s post, but by that time, the attacker had already managed to mine around $1 million in XVG.

Verge’s Response

Upon noticing the attack, Verge’s developers attempted to use a “quick fix” that, according to OCminer, turned out to be a hard fork on the cryptocurrency’s network. The fix, according to the forum member, won’t work either way:

“The background is that the ‘fix’ promoted by the devs simply won’t fix the problem. It will just make the timeframe smaller in which the blocks can be mined / spoofed and the attack will still work, just be a bit slower.”


Verge then published a tweet, stating that the attack was nothing serious. In fact, the team behind it even described it as a "small hash attack".

While Verge’s team claimed the attack lasted three hours, OCminer claimed it was actually 13. The altcoin mining pool operator noted that it will no longer allow Supernova’s users to mine XVG.

More details on the attack later emerged on Reddit, where the user by the name of "Variable 42" stated that the attack wasn’t minor at all. The Redditor provided information on the payout the malicious miner managed to get away with, and blamed Verge’s team for the breach.

The final twist to this story came from the supposed attacker himself. On the forum, using the same thread OCminer created, a user claiming to be the attacker stated that there are even more exploits out there, and that Verge needs to up its game.

The attack came at a time in which Verge’s community expects a mysterious partnership to be revealed on April 16. The partnership, according to the cryptocurrency’s team, will be “the largest cryptocurrency collaboration to hit the market.”

Apple's Tim Cook Says 'No' to Libra-Style Corporate Currency

Neil Dennis

Apple, it appears, will not be going down the Facebook route and launching its own cryptocurrency - at least while Tim Cook remains at the helm of the iPhone manufacturer.

Cook, who took over as chief executive of the mega-cap tech firm in 2011, said in an interview published by Les Echos on Friday that he was a firm believer that money should remain in the hands of states and was not comfortable with the idea that a private company should create a competing currency.

Libra Announced

In June, Facebook unveiled its intention for a 2020 launch of the Libra cryptocurrency - along with its partners in the project. The announcement unleashed the ire of government officials, central bankers and regulators around the world - their concerns focused on Libra's threat to the sovereignty of national currencies.

Cook agreed with this sentiment. He said:

A private company does not have to seek to gain power in this way. Money, like defence, must remain in the hands of States, it is at the heart of their mission. We elect our representatives to assume government responsibilities. Companies are not elected, they do not have to go on this ground.

Apple Card Strategy

Apple's payments strategy lies down the more traditional path of the credit card, with the launch of the Apple Card during the summer. Cook said the scheme would be developed in several countries so long as reliable financial services partners could be found. He concluded:

We do not intend to become a bank. In the US we work with Goldman Sachs. In France we need to find a retail bank that is particularly agile. The world does not need a new credit card. It needs to rethink the credit card.


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