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Security audits for projects with Blockchain and SmartContracts

smart contract audit

By cypher shieldPublished 10 months ago 4 min read

According to some estimates, blockchain technology companies can expect business volumes of €6 billion in 2020. However, they must first deal with blockchain security vulnerabilities, which, despite their relevance, continue to be undervalued when exposed. It deals with the so-called “distributed ledger” technology.

A terminological paragraph, to delimit the term “distributed ledger” (distributed ledger technology, DLT) which has a more fortunate translation as “distributed ledger”. In my opinion, the term “RJT Replicated Journal Technology” is more realistic, Crypto Project Audit since the type of accounting book that records the movements in the blockchains is the so-called “daily book”. Therefore, my preference over the term DLT is that of RJP Replicated Journal Paradigm or RJT Replicated Journal Technology.

Blockchain security vulnerabilities

Some aspects of security have to do with the use of cryptography, and since cryptography is used intensively in blockchain contexts , there is a widespread belief that blockchain systems are inherently secure.

However, in complex systems, different attack vectors continually appear that must be identified and remedied, so over-reliance on technology can be dangerous.

In fact, the technology called DLT is subject to a number of problems that centralized databases do not.

Blockchain security risks do exist, and they must be recognized and mitigated for the blockchain to deliver on its promise to transform the way data is stored and how it affects the projects that use it.

As more government, industrial, and commercial sectors adopt the technology, the need to address these issues sooner rather than later becomes paramount.

Blockchain Vulnerabilities

Interface System Vulnerabilities

One of the most likely vulnerabilities with DLT originates outside of the blockchain itself.

The interface system is the equipment that a user uses to access blockchain-based services.

Credentials are entered into that system, which is reason enough to attract attackers who exploit vulnerabilities. Other times, manipulating the “clipboard” the area of ​​memory used for copy and paste functions can allow an attacker to change the destination account of a transaction.

Malware detection is a desirable functionality in tools that plan to minimize interface system attacks.

Public Key Cryptography Security

Those who propose transactions to be part of the chain (for example, transfers of value in the case of Crypto project auditing services assets and cryptocurrencies) sign them with a private key and provide information about their public key. The private key is archived with the wallet or equivalent mechanism. Equipment protection is again essential. But there are certain risks (for example, based on quantum computing) that in the future could allow obtaining the private key from the public one. To minimize risk, there are techniques associated with single-use wallets that can be adopted.

Key backups should not be kept on the system that is used daily. And even less unencrypted.

Third party platforms

As cybercurrencies and applications using related technologies (such as DLT) become more popular, the market for third-party solutions will experience growth. Some possible services to be offered by third parties are:

  • Blockchain integration platforms
  • payment processors
  • portfolios
  • Fintech Entities
  • Cryptocurrency payment platforms
  • smart contracts

These platforms use different vulnerable technologies, in addition to those specific to blockchain. They are true Digital Trust Service Providers and should comply with the EN 319 401 standard that the EIDAS Regulation imposes on Qualified Providers.

Control of the transition to production

When starting a project or evolving within it, extensive testing must be done to detect vulnerabilities in the code before it is moved to the final execution environment. This is especially relevant in smartcontracts. Languages ​​such as Solidity are frequently used in smarcontracts, with “defects” similar to those of Javascript. A case of special relevance may be to include the addresses of the wallets in quotation marks. Otherwise, addresses are truncated and remitted amounts may end up in irretrievable limbo.

Blockchain size

Depending on the type of crypto asset and how your transaction management system has been designed for its annotation on the blockchain, it may be necessary to preserve the entire blockchain from its origins. Some variants allow you to convert the transaction history into a “status photo” from which the previous history can be discarded. Be that as it may, the more transactions are made, the more the chain grows, which can create sizing problems in the teams where they are managed.

51% attacks

Some crypto-asset systems with different block confirmation philosophies (PoW, Proof of Work, PoS, Proof of Stake, …) could be attacked by groups that exceed 51% participation in the consensus mechanism. Therefore, it would be convenient to anticipate whether it is necessary to have reversal mechanisms, and the responsibility for the execution of such mechanisms.

There have been real cases of this type of attack on the Pow mechanism (theoretical until recently) which is understood knowing that a large number of mining equipment accumulation centers are built in countries where electricity is cheap and supervision is scarce.

Lack of technology maturity

Essential lessons are learned in all technologies as they are adopted and become more widespread. Problems are discovered and resolved. Blockchain technology is still in the early stages of development Crypto project Auditing Company and not all risks and their effects are understood.

Risks due to insufficient standardization

Many of the blockchain systems are deployed with a whitepaper and project source code available on Github. Although it is an exercise in transparency, it is often revealed that the promoters of such projects have little interest in knowing the standards or in adopting them.

It is particularly striking in the field of electronic signatures, whose main market has matured over the years giving rise to various laws and technical regulations that create legal presumptions for those who adopt the technology and define the standards that facilitate its interoperability.

blockchainsmart contract

About the Creator

cypher shield

Get your smart contracts audited and certified by leading smart contract security experts. Our smart contract audit services cover functionality, vulnerabilities, and gas efficiency. Talk to a consultant now to get started.

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