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Author Topic: Transparency in mining/markets, big botnets?  (Read 2425 times)
forgotmypassword5x
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April 18, 2011, 08:12:03 AM
 #1

Is it clear that a few people running the very large  botnets are not in control of the bitcoin markets and mining operations (i.e., whole economy)?

Given estimates of storm botnet power (check [17] on wiki for storm)
"In terms of power, [the botnet] utterly blows the supercomputers away. If you add up all 500 of the top supercomputers, it blows them all away with just 2 million of its machines. It's very frightening that criminals have access to that much computing power, but there's not much we can do about it."

Seems the entire "your initial wealth in our system is given by the amount of cpus you control" model that bitcoin is driven on grossly ignores this fact.   A conspiracy theorist might even conjecture there is some Dude w/ a giant botnet staring at bitcoin/USD charts and grinning.
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theymos
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April 18, 2011, 08:20:00 AM
 #2

It would be great if the Storm botnet started generating! The botnet owner only makes money from generations if bitcoins have value, so he won't break the rules if he has any interest in profit. There's some money to be made from double-spending, but you only get to double-spend for about a day before everyone shuts down their services.

The botnet owner would get paid for his computational power the same as anyone else, at an approximate maximum of 7200 BTC per day.

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forgotmypassword5x
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April 18, 2011, 08:37:17 AM
 #3

It would be great if the Storm botnet started generating! The botnet owner only makes money from generations if bitcoins have value, so he won't break the rules if he has any interest in profit. There's some money to be made from double-spending, but you only get to double-spend for about a day before everyone shuts down their services.

The botnet owner would get paid for his computational power the same as anyone else, at an approximate maximum of 7200 BTC per day.

Um the point is it could and without any kind of transparency, seems very likely to become the case the entire bitcoin economy would be controlled by a few bot-herder warlords.  Do you think building up such an economy is a good idea?  I personally would choose to maintain my cash assets in a currency I have the most faith in, and I have far more in the US than the system above.

I think the bitcoin architecture is quite useful for *transferring* items of value between parties without preventing double spending.
But I think the way new items are introduced (how many cpu cycles you have) is very very bad.
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April 18, 2011, 09:09:11 AM
 #4

Miners dont control the economy. Traders do. As long as miners play by the rules it makes no difference whatsoever who they are. Bitcoin is agnostic to the meaning or intention of a tx or block award. That is kind of the whole point.

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bullox
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April 18, 2011, 10:27:03 AM
 #5

Firstly:  If that botnet decided to start mining, you'd see the difficulty jump by an order of magnitude.  So no, it's probably not doing it right now.

Secondly:  Most botnets are measured in raw power of their CPU time.  This is very much less than ideal for hashing, as GPU's are hundreds-to-thousands of times more efficient at it.  I'm fairly sure the largest distributed botnet in existance would have less than the existing power of the current team of "mining" hashers using GPU's.  Plus throttling those CPU's to 100% of the botnet zombies is likely to attract a few sysadmins/wary users, and not in their best interest.
NghtRppr
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April 18, 2011, 10:31:59 AM
 #6

Plus throttling those CPU's to 100% of the botnet zombies is likely to attract a few sysadmins/wary users, and not in their best interest.

Not that I want to encourage bot herders but I released a modified bitcoind that generates at around half speed so that it doesn't do that.

http://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=6005.0
bittersweet
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April 18, 2011, 10:37:19 AM
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It would be great if the Storm botnet started generating! The botnet owner only makes money from generations if bitcoins have value, so he won't break the rules if he has any interest in profit.

Yea, he only steals CPU power of other people to generate coins for himself... It's like saying, wouldn't it be great if someone stole 10 computers from a store and started to generate Bitcoins for himself?

Roll Eyes

On the other hand, better use it to generate blocks than send spam...

My Bitcoin address: 1DjTsAYP3xR4ymcTUKNuFa5aHt42q2VgSg
NghtRppr
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April 18, 2011, 10:40:20 AM
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It would be great if the Storm botnet started generating! The botnet owner only makes money from generations if bitcoins have value, so he won't break the rules if he has any interest in profit.

Yea, he only steals CPU power of other people to generate coins for himself... It's like saying, wouldn't it be great if someone stole 10 computers from a store and started to generate Bitcoins for himself?

 Roll Eyes

I think his point was, the more legitimate clients generating blocks, the harder it is for others to attack the network.
Raoul Duke
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April 18, 2011, 10:48:53 AM
 #9

...wouldn't it be great if someone stole 10 computers from a store and started to generate Bitcoins for himself?

Thanks for the idea! Tongue

*psy goes sneaking to all main computer shops in the area to install bitcoin2cash's BitcoinBot in all their computers...

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April 18, 2011, 01:14:51 PM
 #10

It's better to trust 5 big companies than 1 government. Governments, at least up today, have proved that monopoly leads to inflation. If you force your citizens to use your currency and you and only you can issue it.... it's only a matter of time when you'll be start to print more paper money with no actual gold (or wealth) backup. that's in fact what's happening and that's why the dollar is going down and gold (that is limited in the total amount in the world) is going up. The 5 companies that own 80% of bitcoin (if they are so) can control the coin in the means of selling and buying (selling loweres the price, buying makes it higher) but at least they cannot issue more money than the amount the algorithm has fixed
theymos
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April 18, 2011, 03:27:02 PM
 #11

Um the point is it could and without any kind of transparency, seems very likely to become the case the entire bitcoin economy would be controlled by a few bot-herder warlords.  Do you think building up such an economy is a good idea?  I personally would choose to maintain my cash assets in a currency I have the most faith in, and I have far more in the US than the system above.

What power would these "bot-herder warlords" have over us? The BTC they generate could just as easily come from buying BTC on the market, so that's not a problem. They also can't damage the network and still be profitable.

Yea, he only steals CPU power of other people to generate coins for himself... It's like saying, wouldn't it be great if someone stole 10 computers from a store and started to generate Bitcoins for himself?

It's not moral for the thief, of course, but it is good for the network.

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xf2_org
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April 18, 2011, 03:31:09 PM
 #12

Given estimates of storm botnet power (check [17] on wiki for storm)
"In terms of power, [the botnet] utterly blows the supercomputers away. If you add up all 500 of the top supercomputers, it blows them all away with just 2 million of its machines. It's very frightening that criminals have access to that much computing power, but there's not much we can do about it."

2 million old machines with lame GPUs, whose owners would probably notice if their machine starts running at max.

MoonShadow
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April 18, 2011, 03:47:20 PM
 #13

"In terms of power, [the botnet] utterly blows the supercomputers away. If you add up all 500 of the top supercomputers, it blows them all away with just 2 million of its machines.

I contest this statement.  First, I doubt seriously this poster has done the calcs to support this.  Second, even if he had, the total botnet power isn't what can realisticly be utilized.  The botnet must only process at a rate that is non-obvious, and must keep network traffic within a small margin of total network traffic.  Furthermore, a botnet is high throughput computing, which is not ideal for many tasks.  It may actually be ideal for bitcoin mining, but the hardware that any botnet may have access to is not ideal to HTC, and the need to stay hidden makes that worse.  I doubt seriously that the largest known botnet ever could have out hashed the largest non-secret supercomputer on the list for more than a day.

"The powers of financial capitalism had another far-reaching aim, nothing less than to create a world system of financial control in private hands able to dominate the political system of each country and the economy of the world as a whole. This system was to be controlled in a feudalist fashion by the central banks of the world acting in concert, by secret agreements arrived at in frequent meetings and conferences. The apex of the systems was to be the Bank for International Settlements in Basel, Switzerland, a private bank owned and controlled by the world's central banks which were themselves private corporations. Each central bank...sought to dominate its government by its ability to control Treasury loans, to manipulate foreign exchanges, to influence the level of economic activity in the country, and to influence cooperative politicians by subsequent economic rewards in the business world."

- Carroll Quigley, CFR member, mentor to Bill Clinton, from 'Tragedy And Hope'
marcus_of_augustus
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April 19, 2011, 01:46:27 AM
 #14

Botnets are centralised entities by the need for controlling nodes (herders) so can be easily disrupted if they start causing trouble for bitcoin .... botcoins could be traced too

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April 19, 2011, 02:01:31 AM
 #15

Mining operations would be a good place for a government agency to get passwords cracked.  Just continue to pay the miners the approximate fee that they would normally get and they would be none the wiser.  Considering the costs of running a super computer per hour, 50 BTC every 10 minutes is extremely cheap.

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April 19, 2011, 02:43:16 AM
 #16

Can't some bot herders overpower the honest netowrk and spread corrupt blockchains etc?

(I dont always get new reply notifications, pls send a pm when you think it has happened)

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MoonShadow
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April 19, 2011, 04:10:31 AM
 #17

Can't some bot herders overpower the honest netowrk and spread corrupt blockchains etc?

Not in any way that I can think of.

"The powers of financial capitalism had another far-reaching aim, nothing less than to create a world system of financial control in private hands able to dominate the political system of each country and the economy of the world as a whole. This system was to be controlled in a feudalist fashion by the central banks of the world acting in concert, by secret agreements arrived at in frequent meetings and conferences. The apex of the systems was to be the Bank for International Settlements in Basel, Switzerland, a private bank owned and controlled by the world's central banks which were themselves private corporations. Each central bank...sought to dominate its government by its ability to control Treasury loans, to manipulate foreign exchanges, to influence the level of economic activity in the country, and to influence cooperative politicians by subsequent economic rewards in the business world."

- Carroll Quigley, CFR member, mentor to Bill Clinton, from 'Tragedy And Hope'
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