Unknown miners have accounted for over 50% of bitcoin cash’s hashrate, hitting a peak near 70% last month, putting the network at risk for an attack.
According to a report compiled by TrustNodes, bitcoin cash’s unknown hashrate reached as high as 68.75% on Dec. 30, with the majority of the network activity seemingly coming from one miner. The coin base text attached to the miner logs for the unknown hash featured a random, but similar collection of symbols and letters, all pointing to one miner accounting for nearly 50% of the network’s hashrate.
Data from Coin.Dance shows that over the past seven days, BCH's unknwon hashrate has since dropped to about 49%, which means the unknown entity may have switched to another network, or diversified its hashrate accross several SHA-256 cryptocurrencies.
The report points out that the unknown miner is operating at a relative loss, and could be making 2.9% more in profit by mining bitcoin rather than bitcoin cash. There is some speculation that the network activity could be harmless: either a new miner that is devoting an abundance of resources towards BCH accumulation or a bitcoin miner that has temporarily switched to the less competitive pool of bitcoin cash.
However, the relative ease in which the unknown miner accounted for more than 51% of network hash has put bitcoin cash’s blockchain at risk for an attack. The report indicates that it could be difficult for BCH to receive outside support in the event of a network attack,
If there is an attack, you’d perhaps expect some miners to move hash from bitcoin, but that then could potentially destabilize bitcoin which rewards miners far more than BCH, so they might not come to its defense.
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