Monero developer Riccardo Spagni said the privacy-focused cryptocurrency recently suffered a Sybil attack. The details shared by Spagni include interesting hints and details about the attack. However, the attack was not successful due to the attacker’s incompetence and highly impenetrable security measures of Monero.
In recent times, XMR has been on many regulators’ radar because of the recent happenings surrounding the cryptocurrency. The US revenue management agency, IRS, announced in September that it is awarding $625,000 to anyone who could succeed in breaking the privacy network provided by Monero. But no one has been able to break into the security protocol because of its tough security setup.
Fluffed hacking attempt
Monero’s main defense mechanism against a Sybil attack is the support of the anonymous internet browser Tor. But to add an extra layer of security, the platform also utilizes Dandelion++, a security protocol Monero implemented in April.
According to Spagni’s tweet, Dandelion++ is a security defense system that takes down transaction broadcasts. That means any Sybil attack that tries linking a transaction to the node IP address will be interrupted by the program at the first instance.
He revealed that although the attack was new, it wasn’t large enough to stay effective against the Dandelion ++ security system. He added that the threat actor would have needed to launch several thousands of nodes before they succeed against Dandelion.
However, Spagni admitted that Dandelion ++ is not the ultimate solution, as it’s not a full-proof security system against attacks. According to Spagni, the security system is not sophisticated enough to prevent a persistent Sybil attack, but only effective when fighting against casual monitoring.
Monero provides complete privacy.
When combined with the Tor browser, transactions on the Monero platform are 100% private. This is why it has attracted so many users who prefer to stay anonymous and hide their identity when dealing with others over the network.
The situation has also become a headache for many regulatory institutions. In August this year, CipherTrace, a blockchain data analysis firm, said it had launched a Monero tracking tool. This attack used a similar process with the tracking tool, as Spagni noted.
In one of his tweets, Spagni describes the attacking method of the threat actor as “quite incompetent,” stating that the Sybil attack wasn’t replaced. With Monero’s network completely reliant on network nodes and their privacy, the attacker tried to control a network by associating the transactions with the IP address but failed.
Three private technologies protect XMR transactions from confidential transactions, secret addresses, and public signature encryption. Apart from the attacker’s incompetence, Spagni stated that the attacker did not succeed because of these stringent security measures.