The development of decentralised finance (DeFi) has faced significant security challenges. According to statistics from Token Terminal, hackers stole more than $2.5 billion between 2020 and 2022 through flaws in cross-chain bridges. Comparatively speaking, this volume of security breaches is significant.
Theo Gauthier, founder and CEO of Toposware, said that all bridge problems stem from a "inherent weakness" that each one of them possesses. No matter how secure a bridge is on its own, according to Gauthier, it is "completely dependant on the security of the chains it connects," which means any flaw or vulnerability inside one of the two chains it connects renders the entire bridge vulnerable.
In a nutshell, bridges try to alleviate the absence of standards amongst protocols by establishing connections between various blockchains. It is thought that achieving interoperability between blockchains will significantly improve user experience and encourage wider use of cryptocurrencies.
Despite the bear market, solutions for interoperability and security in the cryptocurrency sector are gaining ground. Zero-knowledge proofs (ZKPs), one of the most important technologies available, allow data to be validated and certified as true without disclosing further information, in contrast to usual interoperability solutions that demand networks to expose their states.
According to Gustavo Gonzalez, a solutions developer at Open Zeppelin, real-time monitoring and auditing standards would be the answer for bridges. Before being made available "into the wild," Bridges' smart contracts "should be inspected, ideally by numerous third parties. Every time an update is made, a fresh audit should be conducted, and all findings should be openly disclosed to the public.
According to Gonzalez, sophisticated security monitoring might use machine learning technology to highlight potentially suspect patterns of activity, preventing an attack before it even occurs.