i-medIT Blog

Is Blockchain a Shield for Cybercrime?

Is Blockchain a Shield for Cybercrime?

Blockchain technology is all the rage these days. Business owners are going to start hearing this buzzword as a bullet point in software solutions. Developers from all over the world are trying to harness the power of encrypted, distributed data, mainly due to the reputation that blockchain has regarding the “unhackable” permanence of the data stored upon it. However, it as powerful as blockchain is purported to be, it isn’t totally infallible.

How Blockchain Has Been Shown to Be Vulnerable

Let’s face it… blockchain technology is a human invention, which means that there are going to be some flaws.

Admittedly, the concept behind the blockchain makes this hard to believe: every transaction made through the blockchain, financial or data-based, is given a permanent, designated “block” in the chain. Before the transaction is completed, the rest of the network needs to approve this new block’s validity. The block is then added to the chain, where it cannot be altered and provides an unchangeable record of the transaction - to undo it, a new block would be created. It is only then that the transaction is completed.

While this method may seem foolproof, even “unhackable”, this just isn’t the case. In March of 2014, cybercriminals managed to steal $450,000,000 worth of Bitcoin through a transaction mutability vulnerability, and in June of 2016, cybercriminals managed to steal approximately $60,000,000 by leveraging a recursive calling vulnerability.

Additional Blockchain Vulnerabilities

Again, as a human creation, there are going to be some flaws in blockchain platforms. One investigation revealed that some blockchain and cryptocurrency platforms had over 40 vulnerabilities.

51% Vulnerabilities

Many of blockchain’s vulnerabilities have more to do with the nature of the platform as well. One such vulnerability is known as a 51% vulnerability, and is associated with mining cryptocurrencies. Let’s assume you are a cryptocurrency miner. If you manage to accumulate hashing power that exceeds more than half of what the blockchain contains, you could leverage a 51% attack to manipulate the blockchain to your own advantage.

Naturally, more popular blockchains, like Bitcoin, are far too expensive to be practical targets, but smaller coins are much more affordable to attack and can be lucrative for hackers. In 2018, 51% attacks were leveraged against less popular cryptocurrencies, netting the attackers approximately $20 million.

Security of Private Keys

Using a blockchain requires a user to have a private key. Naturally, if this key were to be stolen, those cybercriminals who stole it would be able to access and tamper with that user’s blockchain. What’s worse, because the blockchain is decentralized, these kinds of actions are difficult to track and even harder to undo.

Breach Examples

As you might imagine, most breaches involving a blockchain are in some way tied to an end user. In 2017, a fraudulent cryptocurrency wallet service was left up for months as the cybercriminal responsible allowed people to funnel their cryptocurrencies into it before stealing $4,000,000 - out of a reported total of $2 billion being stolen since 2017 began. In January 2018, it was disclosed that hackers stole private keys with malware, taking over $500,000,000 in NEM coins (a now-effectively-worthless cryptocurrency established by a nonprofit).

If hackers are able to steal from a purportedly “unhackable” technology, what’s to stop them from stealing from your business?

Cybersecurity solutions from i-medIT, that’s what. We can set up the security solutions your business needs to protect its data, and monitor your systems to detect breaches preemptively, preventing a security issue from happening. To learn more about what we can do, reach out to us at 630-549-6199.

What Does Your Business' IT Infrastructure Look Li...
Tip of the Week: Company Culture Can Be a Huge Bus...
 

Comments

No comments made yet. Be the first to submit a comment
Already Registered? Login Here
Guest
Tuesday, June 25 2019

Captcha Image

Mobile? Grab this Article!

QR-Code dieser Seite

Tag Cloud

Tip of the Week Security Technology Best Practices Business Computing Privacy Cloud Google Hackers User Tips Innovation Internet Productivity Email Data Microsoft Hosted Solutions Network Security Hardware Mobile Devices Tech Term Efficiency Business Malware Backup Workplace Tips Data Backup Smartphones Small Business Cloud Computing Smartphone Android Communications VoIP Network Data Recovery IT Support Communication Windows 10 Managed IT Services Software Gadgets Business Management Server Browser Internet of Things Windows Cybercrime IT Services Cybersecurity Computer Artificial Intelligence Router Business Continuity Ransomware Miscellaneous Mobile Device Chrome Spam Collaboration Automation Computers Social Media Users Information How To Phishing Upgrade Outsourced IT BDR Saving Money Word Disaster Recovery Money Save Money Applications Productivity Mobile Device Management Law Enforcement Operating System Social Engineering Office 365 Paperless Office Managed Service Data Breach App Telephone Systems BYOD Connectivity Managed IT Services Voice over Internet Protocol Encryption Remote Monitoring Data Security Safety Vulnerability Passwords Bring Your Own Device Two-factor Authentication Government Sports Private Cloud Google Drive Staff Settings Wi-Fi Facebook Data Protection Holiday Quick Tips Alert Bandwidth Comparison Spam Blocking Website Blockchain Virtual Assistant Display Internet Exlporer Machine Learning Data Storage Networking Education Meetings Telephone System Data storage Physical Security Password Identity Theft Managed IT Software as a Service IT Management Cleaning Business Intelligence Access Control Human Resources Telephony OneNote Scam Update Gmail Windows 7 Downtime Botnet Infrastructure IT Plan Health Augmented Reality YouTube Training Keyboard Windows 10 Public Cloud Recovery CES Cryptocurrency Fraud Servers Microsoft Office Unsupported Software Virtualization The Internet of Things VPN Apps Google Docs Content Management Redundancy Avoiding Downtime Monitor PDF Bing Virtual Reality Cast Save Time Net Neutrality Uninterrupted Power Supply Going Green Touchpad iPhone Hosted Computing Charger Tools Google Apps Cache Printer Firewall Smartwatch Office Digital Signature Flexibility Netflix Default App Sync Amazon Web Services Internet exploMicrosoft Data Management NarrowBand Recycling Hacking Marketing Enterprise Content Management webinar 5G Tip of the week Remote Work Black Market History Unified Threat Management FENG Employer-Employee Relationship Help Desk Current Events Hiring/Firing ISP Office Tips Specifications Managed Service Provider Inventory MSP Computer Care Windows 10s Wireless Internet Mouse Employee DDoS HIPAA Relocation Mobility IT Infrastructure Online Shopping Advertising Wireless Technology eWaste Password Management Conferencing OLED Windows Server 2008 Devices Mobile Computing Patch Management Workers Knowledge Automobile Cryptomining File Sharing Samsung USB Wire Administrator IBM Digital Signage Accountants Legal Investment Evernote Outlook Criminal NIST Emails Manufacturing Credit Cards User Error Thought Leadership Camera Shortcuts Network Congestion Work/Life Balance Database Tech Support HBO Millennials Authentication Value Solid State Drive Smart Office Microchip Supercomputer Data loss Google Search Multi-Factor Security ROI Skype Wireless Charging Humor Security Cameras WiFi HaaS Entertainment Cabling Flash Robot Travel Password Manager Reputation Wireless Social IT Consultant Business Technology Shadow IT Frequently Asked Questions Workforce Nanotechnology Remote Worker Audit Big Data Hybrid Cloud Document Management Search Engine Budget Screen Mirroring Electronic Medical Records Proactive IT Trending Laptop Apple Practices Start Menu Cortana Root Cause Analysis Hacker Chromecast Safe Mode Cables Amazon End of Support Addiction Warranty Business Mangement Customer HVAC Vendor Software Tips Biometric Security Excel Telecommuting Files Smart Tech Wiring Computer Fan Video Games Music Remote Computing Battery Emergency Information Technology Worker Commute Scalability Wearable Technology Smart Technology Worker Risk Management Content Thank You Assessment Search Company Culture Employer Employee Relationship Computing Infrastructure Two Factor Authentication Compliance Rootkit Politics Techology Audiobook Congratulations Television How to Managing Stress Computer Accessories Instant Messaging Troubleshooting Regulation Best Practice Public Computer CrashOverride Transportation Webinar Twitter Printers Loyalty Vendor Management Experience GDPR Benefits Bluetooth IT Support IT solutions SaaS Books