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Messaging on the Blockchain

January 12, 2022 - In additional to being a store of value, a blockchain platform can serve as a medium to exchange messages among parties. This form of message exchanges was recently highlighted in both of the hack events of Poly Network and Cream Finance. In such cases, after the hacks have taken placed, the projects themselves placed messages into specific transactions which were sent to the attacker's address(es).

An example of one such message is shown below from Cream Finance's $130 Million heist took place in late October, 2021.

To a novice, the transaction does not have any indications of messaging, however, in the eyes of an experience investigator, additional secrets can be exposed as shown below.

Step 1 - Expand the Click to see More Link.

Step 2 - Select the View Input As, and change the view from Default View to UTF-8. This process re-encodes the data set into human-readable format allowing message sent from the sender (e.g., Cream Finance) to be observed.

It is probable to use this technique to exchange initial messages with another party and to establish an alternative and secure messaging agreement as the blockchain messaging method may not be secure. While this example shown is specific to Ethereum, such mechanisms exist across all blockchain platforms.

Hope you enjoy today short discussion on messaging on the blockchain.


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