This article was first published on quantstamp - Medium
What We Learned from Fomo3D — Part 1
Fomo3D is a Ponzi scheme smart contract on Ethereum address 0xa62142888aba8370742be823c1782d17a0389da1. The scheme runs in rounds and convinces users to invest Ether in the game while hoping for high returns — the last investor in each round gets the jackpot. In order to become an investor, the users purchase so-called “keys’’ that signify their participation in the game. Every purchase of a key prolongs the duration of the round.
The Fomo3D smart contract was published on Ethereum on July 6, 2018, and very quickly became popular. When its balance exceeded 17,000 ETH, the Ethereum community became interested in the impact of Fomo3D on the network, the Ethereum ecosystem, and formulated some predictions about the future of this scheme. The most viable predictions were that Fomo3D will keep accumulating Ether until the moment when the balance becomes too appealing to the large mining pools, and that those will start colluding in the effort to win the game. Another notable prediction was that the game had the potential of destroying the Ethereum mainnet by consuming all (or at least a great majority of) the Ether in the world that will eventually be all transferred to the hands of a single winner. None of the above happened though. The game was won through an elaborate Ethereum mainnet attack on August 22, 2018, yielding the winner 10,469.66 ETH.
There are two notable events that happened during the first round of Fomo3D that are very interesting from the smart contract security perspective. The first relates to a vulnerability that was introduced in the Fomo3D by the development team. In order to encourage participants to purchase keys, the smart contract would with every purchase of a key transfer 1% of the incoming Ether into a pool dedicated to airdrops. With every purchase over ...
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