Before entering the figures and quantities of hacking in the main cryptocurrencies, we must define what "attack" means.
With a 51% attack, malicious miners manage to gain control of a cryptocurrency blockchain in a very particular way of hacking. Gaining more than half the power of hashing on a blockchain of a cryptocurrency means that you can acquire authentic authority on the network and can authorize or censor any transaction for as long as it has control.
This often leads to "double-spend" attacks, whereby the hacker suspends transactions and therefore if transactions were attempted while they were in control of the network, they would reverse them and transfer the funds from the transactions directly into the pocket, which means that the coins would have been expended in duplicate – from the account originally planned to the hacker's portfolio.
That cost and time are exactly what we are about to explore: how much would you spend to perform a 51% attack on a main blockchain? Taking the values and data from Crypto51, we can discover hacking costs for Bitcoin, Ethereum and Litecoin networks.
The original and most precious cryptocurrency has a market capitalization of $ 113.702 billion USD and a blockchain length that sees 17,299,237 BTC currently in circulation.
To perform a 51% attack on the Bitcoin blockchain, you should squeeze $ 518,131 USD from your pocket for about sixty minutes of fun hackers.
If a hacker is trying to control the Ethereum blockchain, they are trying to attack in a market capitalization network of $ 23.3 billion USD and a blockchain length that has 102.303.239 ETH currently in circulation. Currently, Ethereum is traded for $ 228.56 USD per token.
To attack a 51% attack on the Ethereum blockchain, you should spend $ 174,284 USD for an hour of authority.
The current market capitalization of Litecoin is $ 3.5 billion and there are 58,536,402 LTC in circulation and the token currently has a trading value of $ 59.98 USD.
To successfully conduct a 51% attack on Litecoin's blockchain, you will have to pay $ 46,443 USD for an hour at the checkpoint.
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