PieceWork: Generalized outsourcing control for proofs of work

Philip Daian, Ittay Eyal, Ari Juels, Emin Gün Sirer

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

Abstract

Most prominent cryptocurrencies utilize proof of work (PoW) to secure their operation, yet PoW suffers from two key undesirable properties. First, the work done is generally wasted, not useful for anything but the gleaned security of the cryptocurrency. Second, PoW is naturally outsourceable, leading to inegalitarian concentration of power in the hands of few so-called pools that command large portions of the system’s computation power. We introduce a general approach to constructing PoW called PieceWork that tackles both issues. In essence, PieceWork allows for a configurable fraction of PoW computation to be outsourced to workers. Its controlled outsourcing allows for reusing the work towards additional goals such as spam prevention and DoS mitigation, thereby reducing PoW waste. Meanwhile, PieceWork can be tuned to prevent excessive outsourcing. Doing so causes pool operation to be significantly more costly than today. This disincentivizes aggregation of work in mining pools.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationFinancial Cryptography and Data Security - FC 2017 International Workshops, WAHC, BITCOIN, VOTING, WTSC, and TA, Revised Selected Papers
EditorsAndrew Miller, Michael Brenner, Kurt Rohloff, Joseph Bonneau, Vanessa Teague, Andrea Bracciali, Massimiliano Sala, Federico Pintore, Markus Jakobsson, Peter Y.A. Ryan
Pages182-190
Number of pages9
DOIs
StatePublished - 2017
Externally publishedYes
Event21st International Workshops on Financial Cryptography and Data Security, FC 2017 held in conjuction with 5th Workshop on Encrypted Computing and Applied Homomorphic Cryptography, WAHC 2017, 4th Workshop on Bitcoin and Blockchain Research, BITCOIN 2017,... - Sliema, Malta
Duration: 7 Apr 20177 Apr 2017

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics)
Volume10323 LNCS

Conference

Conference21st International Workshops on Financial Cryptography and Data Security, FC 2017 held in conjuction with 5th Workshop on Encrypted Computing and Applied Homomorphic Cryptography, WAHC 2017, 4th Workshop on Bitcoin and Blockchain Research, BITCOIN 2017,...
Country/TerritoryMalta
CitySliema
Period7/04/177/04/17

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Theoretical Computer Science
  • General Computer Science

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