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Recently, Bitcoin developers have noticed a strange activity on the blockchain. More specifically, a large number of unidentified people OP_RETURN the transactions were discovered.

OP_RETURN is a type of Bitcoin transaction used to embed data in the blockchain. It can be used for anything, like proving the existence of certain data at a given moment (proof of existence) to issue new assets, like the controversial Tether indexed to the US dollar, at the top of the Bitcoin blockchain.

Over the weekend, it became more widely known that the entity behind these deals is VeriBlock, which is a project that joins the Bitcoin blockchain in order to better secure the alternative encryption asset networks. according to Casa CTO Jameson Lopp and VeriBlock's own block explorerVeriBlock has grown to such an extent that it now accounts for about 20% of all daily Bitcoin transactions.

What is VeriBlock?

The basic idea behind VeriBlock is the concept of Proof of Evidence (PoP). This is the additional consensus mechanism used by blockchains that integrate with VeriBlock.

Altcoins tend to have security issues because of the relatively low reward for operating these channels compared to Bitcoin. For example, a mining attack is currently occurring on the $ 500 million Ethereum Classic network. Without enough weight, it becomes easier for bad actors to rewrite the registry history of an encryption asset network. This allows attackers to do things like sending the same coins or tokens to two different parties, essentially creating new funds from scratch.

VeriBlock aims to improve the security of these alternative block chains by integrating the current status of the altcoin log into the Bitcoin blockchain. Instead of relying solely on its own hash for security reasons, VeriBlock allows a blockchain to rely on the enormous computational power that the Bitcoin network already has.

Former Bitcoin Core contributor Jeff Garzik, who sadly led the development of the difficult attempt to abandon Bitcoin by SegWit2x in 2017, is part of the VeriBlock team.

Although the VeriBlock blockchain is still in a test phase, the OP_RETURN transactions it generates already account for about 20% of all Bitcoin network transactions each day.

What does this mean for Bitcoin?

The idea of ​​incorporating alternative data into the Bitcoin blockchain is not new. In fact, a technical debate took place on whether to encourage such transactions over five years ago. This debate eventually resulted in the introduction of the OP_RETURN operator in Bitcoin Core 0.9.

In the past, the creator of Ethereum, Vitalik Buterin claims he avoided building his project on Bitcoin because of the perception that Bitcoin developers would make it difficult for him by limiting the possibility of including data in the Bitcoin blockchain.

There are different opinions as to whether usage cases such as VeriBlock should be defined as spam, but how an unauthorized system such as Bitcoin works if anyone willing to pay fees will transfer their transactions in the blockchain.

For now, VeriBlock is adding to the cost of money transfers on the Bitcoin network due to the limited availability of block space. However, there is really nothing anyone can do about it as long as people are willing to pay Bitcoin transaction fees in order to improve the security of alternative block chains. That said, there are also alternatives to PPP, such as KomodoDeferred Work Proof (DPoW), which requires fewer transactions on the Bitcoin blockchain. The viability of VeriBlock and its effect on Bitcoin will be interestingly monitored in 2019.

Update: This article has been updated to mention the Komodo platform.

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Recently, Bitcoin developers have noticed a strange activity on the blockchain. More specifically, a large number of unidentified people OP_RETURN the transactions were discovered.

OP_RETURN is a type of Bitcoin transaction used to embed data in the blockchain. It can be used for anything, like proving the existence of certain data at a given moment (proof of existence) to issue new assets, like the controversial Tether indexed to the US dollar, at the top of the Bitcoin blockchain.

Over the weekend, it became more widely known that the entity behind these deals is VeriBlock, which is a project that joins the Bitcoin blockchain in order to better secure the alternative encryption asset networks. according to Casa CTO Jameson Lopp and VeriBlock's own block explorerVeriBlock has grown to such an extent that it now accounts for about 20% of all daily Bitcoin transactions.

What is VeriBlock?

The basic idea behind VeriBlock is the concept of Proof of Evidence (PoP). This is the additional consensus mechanism used by blockchains that integrate with VeriBlock.

Altcoins tend to have security issues because of the relatively low reward for operating these channels compared to Bitcoin. For example, a mining attack is currently occurring on the $ 500 million Ethereum Classic network. Without enough weight, it becomes easier for bad actors to rewrite the registry history of an encryption asset network. This allows attackers to do things like sending the same coins or tokens to two different parties, essentially creating new funds from scratch.

VeriBlock aims to improve the security of these alternative block chains by integrating the current status of the altcoin log into the Bitcoin blockchain. Instead of relying solely on its own hash for security reasons, VeriBlock allows a blockchain to rely on the enormous computational power that the Bitcoin network already has.

Former Bitcoin Core contributor Jeff Garzik, who sadly led the development of the difficult attempt to abandon Bitcoin by SegWit2x in 2017, is part of the VeriBlock team.

Although the VeriBlock blockchain is still in a test phase, the OP_RETURN transactions it generates already account for about 20% of all Bitcoin network transactions each day.

What does this mean for Bitcoin?

The idea of ​​incorporating alternative data into the Bitcoin blockchain is not new. In fact, a technical debate took place on whether to encourage such transactions over five years ago. This debate eventually resulted in the introduction of the OP_RETURN operator in Bitcoin Core 0.9.

In the past, the creator of Ethereum, Vitalik Buterin claims he avoided building his project on Bitcoin because of the perception that Bitcoin developers would make it difficult for him by limiting the possibility of including data in the Bitcoin blockchain.

There are different opinions as to whether usage cases such as VeriBlock should be defined as spam, but how an unauthorized system such as Bitcoin works if anyone willing to pay fees will transfer their transactions in the blockchain.

For now, VeriBlock is adding to the cost of money transfers on the Bitcoin network due to the limited availability of block space. However, there is really nothing anyone can do about it as long as people are willing to pay Bitcoin transaction fees in order to improve the security of alternative block chains. That said, there are also alternatives to PPP, such as KomodoDeferred Work Proof (DPoW), which requires fewer transactions on the Bitcoin blockchain. The viability of VeriBlock and its effect on Bitcoin will be interestingly monitored in 2019.

Update: This article has been updated to mention the Komodo platform.