Today’s morning did not bring sunshine for Ethereum community as an issue with Parity wallet software caused an unknown amount of user funds to freeze.
The issue was reported by @devops199 on Github. He mentioned that he was able to kill the library contract being used by the multi-sig wallets deployed using Parity. This is supposed to have affected dependent multi-sig contracts because their state-modifying code was inside the library and thus are unusable without the library code. As a result, currently no funds can be moved out of the multi-sig wallets. Read the full statement by Parity Technologies here.
Not to forget, Parity is the second most popular wallet software after Geth. Going by the market share of wallets on ethernodes.org, it is being assumed that around $150 million worth of ether funds are stuck due to this issue. Charlie Lee, creator of Litecoin sums up the history of these hacks and the impacted amount:
Numbers in perspective:
DAO hack (2016) – $55M (14% of marketcap)
Multisig hack (July) – $30M (0.15%)
Multisig nuke (today) – $150M (0.5%)
— Charlie Lee [NO2X] (@SatoshiLite) November 7, 2017
The Multisig hack in July was patched up by the company, but looks like that there was still an issue left which enabled this compromise.
It’s simple really, imagine walking up to a bank vault and there’s a button that says “Lock Forever”……. someone accidentally pushes it.
— devops199 (@devops199) November 7, 2017
What does it mean for Ethereum:
Due to this issue, the biggest question standing today is if Ethereum will need to fork. It needs to be seen if the funds can be recovered without a fork. If the answer is positive, the community will be keenly looking at the fate of those funds. In case this lot of ether is sucked out of the system, it can cause the price to rise significantly owing to the condition of no significant drop in demand.
Having said that it raises questions on the credibility of this currency and might stir doubt among the community. For now, we can say that everything is dependent on the official statement from Parity Technologies on their findings and decision.
Stay tuned to @InstaCoinNews for more updates on this issue.