A few days back, Bitcoin Core developers discovered a vulnerability in its Bitcoin Core software that would have allowed a miner to insert a ‘poisoned block’ in its blockchain. This would have crashed the nodes running the Bitcoin software around the world.
The software patch notes state, “A denial-of-service vulnerability (CVE-2018-17144) exploitable by miners has been discovered in Bitcoin Core versions 0.14.0 up to 0.16.2.” The developers further recommended users to upgrade any of the vulnerable versions to 0.16.3 as soon as possible.
CVE-2018-17144: The denial-of-service vulnerability
The vulnerability was introduced in Bitcoin Core version 0.14.0, which was first released in March 2017. But the issue wasn’t found until just two days ago, prompting contributors of the codebase to take action and ultimately release a tested fix within 24 hours.
In a report by The Next Web, “The bug relates to its consensus code. It meant that some miners had the option to send transaction data twice, causing the Bitcoin network to crash when attempting to validate them. As such invalid blocks need to be mined anyway, only those willing to disregard block reward of 12.5BTC ($80,000) could actually do any real damage.”
Also, the bug was not only in the Bitcoin protocol but also in its most popular software implementation. Some cryptocurrencies built using Bitcoin Core’s code were also affected. For example, Litecoin patched the same vulnerability on Tuesday.
However, the bitcoin is far too decentralized to be brought down by any single entity.
TNW also states, “While never convenient, responding appropriately to such potential dangers is crucial to maintaining the integrity of blockchain tech – especially when reversing transactions is not an option.” This vulnerability discovery, however, was a great escape from the Bitcoin collapse.
To read about this news in detail, head over to The Next Web’s full coverage.