Crypto: The million validators on Ethereum, a time bomb?

Validator balance on Ethereum has always been a major concern. The more their number increases, the more secure the blockchain is. However, an overabundance of validators can lead to issues such as failed transactions. Recently, this question has been revived within the crypto community. Here are the details !

The million validators on Ethereum: Security at stake

Although October 2023 saw a decline in interest among crypto enthusiasts to become a validator on Ethereum, this trend was fleeting. Apparently the situation has changed: the number of validators on the blockchain has exploded.

The number of validators is an issue (too many validators can lead to failed transactions). But the maximum effective stake amount (>32 ETH) should mitigate this risk. »

The Ethereum network has just reached a major milestone with one million validators now activereports Cointelegraph. This is a significant milestone, illustrating the growing trust in blockchain. With 32 million ETH at stake, valued at over $114 billionsecuring the network becomes a priority.

The Dune Analytics tracking platform reported this historic milestone on March 28. The data shows that 26% of the total ETH supply is currently stakedproviding a solid foundation for network security and resilience.

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What data regarding staking on Ethereum – Source: Dune

Staking pools, notably Ethereum Lido, are growing in popularity. These platforms allow small ETH holders to participate in staking by pooling their resources, thereby strengthening the decentralization of the blockchain.

Validators play a crucial role in network protection against malicious activity such as double spending. By participating in the proposal and validation of transactions, they contribute to the reliability and robustness of Ethereum.

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To become a validator, a minimum stake of 32 ETH is required. In return for their engagement, validators receive a reward in the form of ETH, thereby encouraging continued participation and maintaining network security.

Too many validators are killing crypto transactions!

In the world of Ethereum, security is a top priority. But with a million active validators, some experts are starting to worry. According to veteran investor Evan Van Ness, the current number of validators is already “too high”a statement shared by Gabriel Weide, staking pool manager, who fears “failed transactions”, as stated in the tweet above.

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Peter Kim of Coinbase Wallet admits that the impressive number of validators is partly due to the 32 ETH limit imposed. However, he suggests changes could be coming.

Vitalik Buterin proposes sanctions

In the race for decentralization, Vitalik Buterin, the visionary behind Ethereum, has a new idea. On March 27, he unveiled a plan to make the network fairer by penalizing validators based on their failure rates.

Under this proposal, validators would face harsher penalties for repeated failure. Buterin thus hopes to reduce the advantage of large ETH holders over smaller ones.

This is not the first time that such an initiative has been put forward. In June 2023, researchers proposed capping the MAX_EFFECTIVE_BALANCE at 2,048 ETH, already sparking controversy within the crypto community.

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