Coinmetrics publishes a report on irregularities in the maximum supply of Bitcoin Private (BTCP), a combination of the fork of the Bitcoin and ZClassic block chains. Up to 2 million BTCPs were “pre-mined” and kept hidden using technical elements of the protocol.
Its total supply at the time of the bifurcation had been set at 20.4 million, with a mining rewards plan that would lead to a maximum supply of 21 million, such as Bitcoin. However, 2.04 million extra BTCPs were created, sent to the protected pool of BTCP, raising the initial supply to 22.6 million in a secret manner.
According to the Coinmetrics report, these coins were created by adding bitcoin unused exits (UTXO) to the blocks of the new chain, in a process that was favored by the use of checkpoints to check the status of the network, and the transmission of the UTXO to update the status of its new chain.
In order to be able to complete the BTCP number, as well as to register the most current state of both networks, a process of importing the information of the chain of blocks was carried out, adding about 10,000 UTXO per block. “Blocks 272,992 to 278,457 were used to import the BTC UTXO set. The UTXO to import was made up of 59,188,317 unspent exits whose combined value was 16,891,665 BTC, “the report states.
Each block in this import range contained 10,000 output, each. However, supply manipulation occurred during this period, when “some special blocks containing 10,400 exits also appeared”. The extra outputs, added in 102 of those blocks, helped introduce this new amount of BTCP.
Peter Todd, recognized specialist and researcher of Bitcoin technology, told Coinmetrics that it could be the use of checkpoints or validation points in each block. However, the researchers realized that this was done in a different way, making the process of importing the BTC UTXOs very special and manipulable, and with low controls.
In addition, the process of verification of the creation of coins by block, copied from the one that works in the Bitcoin protocol (12.5 BTC), does not work for BTCP and what was affected was not the mining, but the import of the outputs for the creation of the main chain of Bitcoin Private.
Taking advantage of the characteristics of ZCL, especially the protected addresses derived from the private protocol of Zcash, the coins were sent to armored addresses in April 2018, forming part of one of the largest pools in the chain.
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