Game theoretic analysis of reputation approach on block withholding attack

Lianyang Yu, Jiangshan Yu, Yevhen Zolotavkin

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference PaperResearch


Bitcoin and the underlying technology blockchain introduced an open distributed system that incorporates Proof of Work and Nakamoto Consensus. Despite the broad adoption by enthusiasts, the consensus mechanism is vulnerable to certain issues, such as block withholding attack, selfish mining, and 51% attack. Various solutions have been proposed to address these problems. RepuCoin is one successful example, which claims to solve the selfish mining and 51% attack by adopting a novel reputation concept and modified BFT protocol. We generalize the reputation concept introduced in RepuCoin, and implement it in traditional Bitcoin system to analyze whether it can prevent the block withholding attack. We propose a reputation-based reward mechanism for the Bitcoin blockchain and a reward sharing schema for the mining pools. We model the utility of honest mining and block withholding attack for pools, and find that the inclusion of reputation in Bitcoin’s reward mechanism and pools’ reward schema can prevent mining pools from launching block withholding attack.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationNetwork and System Security
Subtitle of host publication14th International Conference, NSS 2020 Melbourne, VIC, Australia, November 25–27, 2020 Proceedings
EditorsMirosław Kutyłowski, Jun Zhang, Chao Chen
Place of PublicationCham Switzerland
Number of pages18
ISBN (Electronic)9783030657451
ISBN (Print)9783030657444
Publication statusPublished - 2020
EventInternational Conference on Network and System Security 2020 - Virtual, Melbourne, Australia
Duration: 25 Nov 202027 Nov 2020
Conference number: 14th (Proceedings) (Website)

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Computer Science
ISSN (Print)0302-9743
ISSN (Electronic)1611-3349


ConferenceInternational Conference on Network and System Security 2020
Abbreviated titleNSS 2020
Internet address


  • Block withholding attack
  • Blockchain
  • Game theory
  • Reputation

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