As Ethereum validators need to share 32 ETH, Ethereum could become more centralized and vulnerable to censorship by governments.
Upgrading Ethereum to Proof-of-Stake (PoS) could make it more vulnerable to government interference and censorship, according to lead researcher Merkle Science.
Speaking to Cointelegraph in the wake of the Ethereum merger, Kobi Moran, a former FBI analyst and principal investigator at cryptography and forensics compliance firm Merkle Science, voiced his thoughts on some of the risks associated with Ethereum’s transition to PoS.
While centralization issues were widely discussed prior to the merger, Moran suggested that the exorbitant cost of verification could lead to the merger of validator nodes with larger crypto companies such as Binance, Coinbase, and Kraken.
To become a full-fledged validator of the Ethereum network, you need to stake 32 ether.
, priced at about $47,000 at the time of this writing.
A pre-merger report published by blockchain analytics platform Nansen earlier this month revealed that 64% of staked ETH is controlled by just five assets.
Moran went on to say that these larger institutions “will be subject to the whims of governments around the world” and that once verification nodes identify authorized addresses, they can “reduce rewards and then eventually disconnect from the system.” to them. to them:
“Either you obey and stop engaging in this type of interaction […] or you risk being fined, scrutinized, or potentially sanctioned.”
Vitalik Buterin spoke about this risk in a phone call with developers on August 18, suggesting that selecting validators to exclude or filter authorized transactions could be a form of censorship.
Vitalik went on to say that unless some validators comply with the sanctions, these transactions will eventually be found in later blocks and that the censorship will only be temporary.
On August 8, the Tornado Cash crypto mixer became the first smart contract approved by a US government agency.
Related: Representative Emmer requests clarification from Sec about OFAC Tornado Cash enforcement. Yellen
In response, various organizations complied with the sanctions and blocked sanctioned addresses from accessing their products and services.
The development had a huge impact on the Ethereum community when EthHub co-founder Anthony Sassano tweeted on August 16 that he would consider Ethereum a failure and move on if censorship continues.