Paper 2017/791

Merged Mining: Curse of Cure?

Aljosha Judmayer, Alexei Zamyatin, Nicholas Stifter, Artemios G. Voyiatzis, and Edgar Weippl


Merged mining refers to the concept of mining more than one cryptocurrency without necessitating additional proof-of-work effort. Although merged mining has been adopted by a number of cryptocurrencies already, to this date little is known about the effects and implications. We shed light on this topic area by performing a comprehensive analysis of merged mining in practice. As part of this analysis, we present a block attribution scheme for mining pools to assist in the evaluation of mining centralization. Our findings disclose that mining pools in merge-mined cryptocurrencies have operated at the edge of, and even beyond, the security guarantees offered by the underlying Nakamoto consensus for extended periods. We discuss the implications and security considerations for these cryptocurrencies and the mining ecosystem as a whole, and link our findings to the intended effects of merged mining.

Available format(s)
Cryptographic protocols
Publication info
Preprint. MINOR revision.
hash functions
Contact author(s)
ajudmayer @ sba-research org
2017-08-22: received
Short URL
Creative Commons Attribution


      author = {Aljosha Judmayer and Alexei Zamyatin and Nicholas Stifter and Artemios G.  Voyiatzis and Edgar Weippl},
      title = {Merged Mining: Curse of Cure?},
      howpublished = {Cryptology ePrint Archive, Paper 2017/791},
      year = {2017},
      note = {\url{}},
      url = {}
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