As reported previously, the planned November 15 Bitcoin Cash fork resolved in the exact manner that most people anticipated – BCNH held majority hashrate, retaining the BCH ticker, Bitcoin Cash ABC went on to live a life of its own, and the event of the separation was inconceivably gentlemanly for a contentious fork.
However, some of these realities appear to have changed since then. The idea of a peaceful coexistence where the market should decide which chain is superior, while still dominant in the space, has not been the only enacted one. An anonymous miner has taken upon himself to destroy the minority fork of Bitcoin ABC, and for days in a row has been successfully attacking its network.
The vast majority of blocks mined on the ABC chain have been empty, and apparently mined by a single entity. The “mysterious” miner has also left an unequivocal message – “Nov 25th 2020: bcha dump | voluntarism.dev:6174 u/p: x/x”. The few mined by other entities (namely ViaBTC) have had to include a massive number of spam transactions that were sent to the network during the hour-long windows of empty or no blocks on the network, inflicting a heavy blow on the user experience.
And not only is the blockchain usability under attack – the existence of the network itself is heavily reliant on miners taking on massive losses to prevent this ongoing abuse. None have risen up to the challenge so far, a day before the date mentioned in the coin base text.
While the manner in which the chain split into two was not necessarily friendly, there was at least some degree of evident mutual respect – in stark contrast to any other split that had occurred during the past 3 years. This led people to believe that the “mysterious” miner was not acting due to his/her allegiance to the BCHN side of the fork, and could instead be a backer of BSV or BTC.
However, a recent revelation by crypto show host Collin Enstad suggests that the intentions of the attacker are clearer than initially anticipated. Transactions are allowed to go through as long as they include a statement disparaging the reason for ABC to split from the network in their OP_RETURN.
At present, Bitcoin Cash ABC developers do not appear to have given up on their goal of building for their blockchain of choice. Little information is given on how they intend to protect their chain in the following days with less than 24 hours until November 25th but their confidence suggest that they have something in store. Protecting a minority chain of a minority chain using by far the most popular hashing algorithm to protect its blockchain is no easy task so the next hours will be crucial – and exciting for those observing the events.