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An increasing number of nodes in the network of the second largest cryptocurrency by capitalization are starting to use American bots, which increase censorship in the blockchain
About 45% of the blocks on the Ethereum network are verified through bots that comply with US sanctions, Lahan Feeney, CEO of blockchain company Labrys, told Cointelegraph. According to him, the reports, which say that there are only 25% of such blocks, are already outdated, and at the moment, probably every second block is subject to censorship.
Feeney explained that an increasing number of ETH validators are starting to use centralized MEV-boost relay flashbots, which are most often located in the US and “censor certain transactions in the blocks they create, especially transactions from Tornado Cash.”
MEV bots are centralized software designed to extract the maximum extractable value (MEV). Such programs have become popular among validators because they effectively select those transactions that can generate the most income.
On September 28, Labrys released the MEV Watch tool, which shows which bots are adhering to US Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) sanctions. According to Feeney, in the case of severe censorship, bots “discard” blocks with transactions associated with sanctioned addresses, which makes it impossible to enter these transactions into the blockchain, no matter how high the commission is assigned.
These findings are supported by a study published on September 28, which states that of more than 19,000 blocks verified using Mev-Boost Relay bots, none included a Tornado cash transaction.
At the same time, the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) claims that transactions on the Ethereum network are made in the United States, as blockchain validators are clustered more densely in the US than in any other country.
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