A new unknown entity mining huge amounts of crypto is raising eyebrows in the Bitcoin Cash community.
The miner goes by the name ‘Satoshi Nakamoto’, the pseudonymous creator of Bitcoin. Hacked reports that the miner currently controls close to 40% of Bitcoin Cash’s overall hashrate. Data from Coin.dance currently shows that unknown mining pools control 37-39.58% of the hashrate, at time of writing.
The mysterious miner has been around for about a week, and quickly triggered speculation that shenanigans are at play.
“Suspicion immediately fell on self-proclaimed Satoshi Nakamoto, Craig S. Wright, and his Bitcoin SV cohorts: Calvin Ayre and [mining pool] CoinGeek.”
Users on the leading Bitcoin Cash subreddit posted a number of theories about the activity, from an attempt to mine and then sell Bitcoin Cash for Bitcoin SV, to an effort to attack Bitcoin Cash’s blockchain and delay or reverse a small number of transactions.
“I’m willing to bet it’s hashpower ran by Coingeek et ell which is trying to pull the same trick as before: first amass BCH by mining it over time, then trying to ‘flip’ it with the state-friendly BSV by exchanging all the mined coins at once for BSV, thus triggering a crash in the BCH price while attracting money from speculators into BSV.”
“My guess is they will go for a minor re-org (maybe 6 blocks) to claim that BCH is no better than BSV, even though they self-inflicted their re-org. They’d be doing this for purely for show, for bad PR against BCH, unless they are really mining to sustain their BSV operations.”
The Bitcoin Cash hard fork in 2018 resulted from rivaling factions that differed on how to implement software improvements. It split the blockchain into two separate and divisive camps: Bitcoin ABC (BCHABC) and Bitcoin SV (BSV) for ‘Satoshi Version’. If any one group can command 51% of the hashrate, it has the ability to control the blockchain and execute double-spend attacks, effectively stealing Bitcoin Cash.
After the hard fork, a hash war quickly followed. Bitcoin SV proponent Craig Wright explained that miners were launching an “endurance” attack on Bitcoin Cash.
Bitcoin Magazine described the battle at the time.
“…the ‘hash war’ seems to have turned into what Wright and others call an ‘endurance attack’ or ‘persistence hunting.’ The idea is that while Bitcoin Cash ABC has been able to defend its chain against attacks with hash power, this has been at great cost and cannot last forever. If and when more miners leave the network, the 51% attack(s) will take place.”
A few days after Wright announced the endurance attack, CoinGeek said it would support a permanent chain split from Bitcoin Cash, launching Bitcoin SV as an everlasting competitor. CoinGeek was founded by Bitcoin SV supporter Calvin Ayre who declared that the move to a new chain “ends the on-going BCH hash war triggered by the November 15, 2018 network upgrade.”