Hiding in the “Dark Forest,” computerized predators steal from people who don’t know they are trying to do business using blockchain.
The idea of a “Dark Forest” comes from a book by Cixin Liu. It’s about a place where if you’re found, you’ll be attacked by dangerous enemies. It is often compared to Ethereum’s unfriendly and unclear block-making environment.
Automated searchers look for people making transactions with Ethereum. They try to take advantage of the transactions and make money by doing things like frontrunning and sandwich attacks.
Hasu, who works at Flashbots as a strategy lead, talked to the host Mike Ippolito on a podcast called Bell Curve. He said it’s important to make privacy tools to keep users safe from MEV attacks.
The search for being alone
Hasu says there are three different groups in the world of cryptocurrency who have very different reasons for wanting privacy. First, he wants to talk about the people who strongly believe in protecting privacy as a basic human right.
Also, Hasu says that another group of crypto researchers, who are very interested in learning and studying, focus on privacy and are trying to make it better by looking at zero knowledge, cryptography, and trusted execution environments.
“They are doing it because they like to challenge their brains,” he says.
The third group includes people who design how things work and how they are bought and sold. Hasu, who works at Flashbots, is one of those people. He wants to create ways to keep things private and make sure they work well.
Privacy is very important when you want to make a good market structure, especially in the MEV supply chain, according to Hasu. “Privacy is important because there is valuable information in the bids. ”
“He says that being able to see what a person wants to do gives the searcher an advantage because they can predict their actions and potentially hurt them financially. ”
Hasu thinks that privacy is really important for working together successfully when building something. “We want validation and block production to be spread out among many different people. ”
He said that if one group has full control over the supply chain, they would have a lot of power. Instead, he believes in letting more people help in building and searching for blocks.
This teamwork won’t work if your information isn’t safe, because people can take your stuff and steal your money.
“Having privacy in the MEV supply chain is very important,” says Hasu. “We couldn’t reach our goals without solving the privacy problem. ”
MEV-Share is a way to divide information about the minimum viable product among team members.
Ippolito talks about the privacy improvements of Flashbots’ MEV-Share tool. This tool lets users decide which parts of their transaction they want to share with others.
Hasu says that with MEV-Share, searchers can’t see user orders, which keeps the transactions safe from MEV exploitation.
We give out some information, but not a lot, to narrow down the search and make it easier for people to find what they’re looking for.
The block builders in this system are responsible for “running this simulation and matching the orders,” Hasu explains.
“He says it’s a whole new way of doing things for people looking for something,” “We’re not used to looking at private information, but we believe it will give users much better results. “