Fork Wars: Bitcoin Cash SV Surges as Craig Wright Reveals 50%+ of Hashpower Support It

  • Self-proclaimed Satoshi Nakamoto Craig Wright has recently claimed his BCHSV has over 50% of the network's hashrate supporting it.
  • This means miners can band together to "choke" the competing blockchain and block transactions by mining empty blocks.

Bitcoin Cash SV (SV), the protocol backed by self-proclaimed Satoshi Nakamoto Craig Wright, has recently seen its price surge well over 50% as it has been revealed over 51% of the network’s hashrate is currently supporting the SV development team.

During an interview with Tone Vays that was recently published on YouTube, Wright revealed that some more miners will be supporting Bitcoin Cash SV, but haven’t made it public yet. Nevertheless, those that already support it have already surpassed the 51% hashrate threshold.

Data from Coin.Dance shows that this has indeed happened, as the pools supporting SV are CoinGeek, Mempool, BMG, and SVP. Together, these account for roughly 56% of the network’s hashrate.

Bitocin Cash's current hashrate distribution

Notably, having a majority of the hashrate means that if the BCH blockchain does split, the miners can together “kill off” the competing chain by deploying their hashpower to only mine empty blocks on it. This would stop transactions from going through, making the cryptocurrency useless.

The move, which some see as an aggressive move, is to Wright “part of the protocol,” which allows it to happen. The threat of such an attack is so real that a group of miners have grouped together to form the SharkPool and revealed they will “exclusively” mine empty blocks.

While according to some the attack may merely be a bluff, the other side is looking to respond. As CryptoGlobe covered Bitmain, the world’s largest cryptocurrency mining hardware manufacturer, has been looking to deploy 90,000 Antminer S9 ASICs ahead of the hard fork.

Given the hashpower on SV’s side, futures of the implementation being traded on Poloniex have recently surged well over 50%. At press time, they’re trading at 113 USDC, while the BCHABC implementation has dropped nearly 15% to 406 USDC.

BCHSV's pricei s seemingly recovering

These pre-fork futures, as covered, are seen by Wright as a “criminal offence.”

Bitcoin Cash’s Upcoming Hard Fork

The hard fork schedule for November 15 on the bitcoin cash (BCH) blockchain doesn’t have consensus from the community. Two sides, BCHABC and BCHSV, have different visions for the future, and they aren’t compatible with each other.

Bitcoin Cash ABC, the one that originally forked Bitcoin’s blockchain, supports key technical changes that could make “atomic swaps” easier, while maintaining the 32 MB block size. Bitcoin SV, backed by Craig Wright and nChain, plans to increase the size to 128 MB.

During the interview, Vays asked Wright if he was worried Jihan Wu, the CEO of Bitmain, would use hashpower from Antpool, a Bitmain-owned mining pool with 13.5% of bitcoin’s (BTC) hashrate, to compete. Wright replied:

"I'm really hoping for it. See, I don't believe in code is law, I believe in law is law. We've already been talking to lawyers and if you start doing that as a director of a company in China, where the laws are even more restrictive than in the UK or US, and you without authorization spend shareholder money… I'm really hoping he does. I beg Jihan, please do that. Please Jihan. Please do that."

If the current trend continues, BCHSV’s futures may see their price rise above those of BCHABC’s. Yesterday, November 10, they were significantly down at 69 USDC, while BCHABC was at 470 USDC.

$4.9 Million: Ransomware Hits Mexico’s State-Owned Oil Firm to Demand 565 BTC

Mexico’s state-owned oil company Pemex has been hit by a ransomware attack that’s seen extortionists demand 565 BTC (around $4.9 million) to decrypt its files.

The attack has reportedly forced Pemex (Petróleos Mexicanos) to halt critical operations and to disconnect 5% of its network from the internet. Workers, according to Bloomberg, reported internal memos initially told them not to turn on their computers, although they were turned on later on.

On Twitter, Pemex posted a statement claiming its operations aren’t being disrupted, although some replied claiming systems are down and causing disruptions:

According to Bleeping Computer Pemex wasn’t affected, as initially thought, by the Ryuk ransomware, but by a DoppelPaymer infection, which is a fork of the BitPaymer infected that earlier this month infected Spain’s largest radio network.

In leaked ransom notes and on the Tor payment site, the ransomware extortionists reportedly ask Pemex for a total of 565 bitcoin (around $4.94 million) to give them a way to decrypt its files and stop the attack. The payment site explains the price is set according to “network size, number of employees, annual revenue.”

The attackers also give the victim a chance to negotiate with them a different amount, either via email or via an online chat function available on the website. Bleeping Computer reports the online chat on the payment site is empty, which means Pemex didn’t attempt to negotiate the ransom.

Featured image by Dmitry Demidko on Unsplash.