Stephanie Kent, Krypton’s founder, working from a convenience store after having lost power in her home due to the Florida hurricane, Hermine.
The world of cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin and altcoins, is a strange place, often likened to the Wild West. It is so well-populated by the anonymous, that it becomes easy to forget that there is a real person on the other side of that userid, handle or avatar; that, when things go terribly wrong, for example, real people are being hurt, their very real investments, sometimes including businesses, are being destroyed.
I know this world firsthand. For the past two years, I myself, have lived amongst its denizens as an anonymous actor, hiding behind a pseudonym to protect my own identity, as should be the privilege of every citizen to do if they wish. It is only now, when I have decided to take my altcoin project, Krypton, into the light of “the real world,” have I come forward with my name and my desire to grow my project into a real company.
My lead developer, Krypton-Dev, remains anonymous. I have known him and yet not known him for over two years now. Ironically, he is one of my best friends and the person whom I trust the most, by often placing the entire success or failure of Krypton in his very capable hands.
Just two days ago, I did this very thing, trust this anonymous friend with not only my business and entire life savings (don’t get me started about using personal funds to found a startup!) but, also with the investments of everyone holding Krypton’s blockchain coin, KR.
The Krypton blockchain was attacked; hacked twice in the past week by an anonymous group calling themselves the “51 crew.” The Shift chain was also robbed. 51 crew employed a deadly blockchain exploit, only recently revealed by Ethereum, which allowed 51 crew to manufacture their own version of the KR chain offline and push that into production as the real KR chain by combining large amounts of hashing power and DDos attacks on KR nodes.
This exploit exists for all Ethereum-based blockchains coded in golang. Specifically, it most easily targets chains with overall low network hashing rates of 100GH/s or less. Krypton, Shift, Soil, and Expanse are all vulnerable. It might even be possible, by a large mining farm such as the one owned by Chandler Guo, to attack Ethereum Classic in this manner.
Lacking the network hashing power provided by a vast number of coin miners, there seems to be no way to defend against this exploit. At least, we at Krypton, have not yet found a solution.
It is for this reason, Krypton has decided on the following temporary course of action in order to protect KR from being stolen from exchanges through a double spend: Krypton is moving KR from an Ethereum-based proof-of-work blockchain to a Bitcoin-based proof-of-stake blockchain.
In a single sleepless night, Krypton-Dev coded this POS blockchain and Windows and Mac wallets for KR to be moved to. Can you understand why I trust this man with my business and KR holder’s investments? My admiration for his tireless dedication to Krypton knows no bounds.
Instead of giving up, Krypton is fighting back, in the only way we know how: fall back, regroup and survive to fight another day.
The two coin exchanges where KR trades, Bittrex and Yobit, have been contacted regarding Krypton’s upcoming coin swap. Because Krypton is moving to an entirely different protocol, we cannot make this fix an easy upgrade and therefore must digitally swap KR on the old chain for KR on the new one.
Bittrex Exchange will be performing a swap of KR currently on their exchange.
Krypton has not yet heard from Yobit regarding Krypton’s request for a coin swap.
KR held offline, in individual Krypton wallets, will be swapped manually by Krypton.
Complete instructions for the manual swap and also for installing the new KR wallets will be provided soon and posted on the Krypton website: https://Krypton.Rocks
Unfortunately, since Krypton’s blockchain KR launched with very little interest, Krypton does not have a pool of development funds to draw from in order to pay even the small exchange fees necessary for these swaps. Krypton remains a grassroots, community-driven project until the time I can secure Tier 1 financing to startup the two structures I have planned for Krypton’s future: Krypton Foundation (to guide and support the KR blockchain) and Krypton Corp (a software as a service and software development corporation.)
So, with a heavy heart, I ask the Krypton Community, to please, open your wallets and help us all to move forward from this attack. 21,465 KR were stolen. 1.5 BTC is required by Bittrex to execute the swap.
Krypton Development Fund (BTC) – 12pWLhz1cYmFPaKSBF5Pui5YddJS1jsxsz
I am not the only person with a sizeable investment in KR and I am now nowhere near the top holder, having solely repaid the theft from Bittrex, valued at $2,900. I expect every community member’s voluntary contribution to help amend this theft and move forward.
Know this: Krypton is more than just a blockchain or another cryptocurrency. We will survive these attacks, even if it means staying on the POS chain, in order to protect KR investments, until we do the complete rewrite of our client platform in a more secure language, like C. This Ethereum-like rewrite remains one of our longer-term goals, as is coding a new programming language to replace Solidity.
In addition, there are many short-term goals that Krypton are still working on now. Watch our Trello board for updates. https://trello.com/b/JmmF7y7A/krypton
Within the next two weeks, I will be in Shanghai China, at the International Blockchain Week conference, meeting with future Krypton business partners, investors and Chinese coin exchanges. I expect to make the same types of professional associations that I did while I was in Canada, speaking at FinTech Toronto, hosted by the Digital Finance Institute.
I am continuing to solicit financing to make all of Krypton’s plans a reality. When I can move KR forward from this exploit, and have it trading again, I will have time once more to reach out to the potential Krypton business partners and investors I have already made first contact with.
The good news in all of this is that Krypton’s newest partner, the SnT FinTech Lab at the University of Luxembourg will now have two KR chains to experiment with. I expect them to have much more fun breaking code on one of them.
In conclusion, my sincere wishes:
The Florida hurricane, Hermine, which directly hit my home two days ago and filled the lower level of my house with three feet of seawater did not cause as much damage as the 51 crew has done to both Krypton and Shift investors. It is my hope that other vulnerable blockchains take note and immediate precautions against a similar attack.
Real lives. Real jobs. Real investments. The world of crypto has just become all too real.
Today, Krypton believes a solution to these novel types of 51% attacks has been found.
If after coding and testing, this proves to be a viable fix, Krypton will be able to remain an Ethereum-based blockchain. Krypton is delaying the swap to a Bitcoin-based POS blockchain while we work with this solution.
I’d like to thank Professor Emin Gün Sirer of Cornell University, for his guidance in this matter and also for his support of Krypton.
$KR #Krypton$SHF $SOIL $EXP $ETC $ETH #Bitcoin
FIX FOR 51% ATTACK VECTOR
provided by @el33th4xor & Satoshi himselfhttps://t.co/6LG4311q0p
— Stephanie Kent (@covertress) September 6, 2016
Read more about this fix from Rocky at Crypto Hustle:
Smaller Blockchains Find a Solution Against Network Attacks