Hello Everyone and fellow delegators to the Alif Validator.
This post is long overdue; We at Alif want to help all delegators rest easy when they delegate to us. For this reason we will be sharing a network overview which tackles the two main issues that can lead to a Slashing of your funds. Our team here at Alif is dedicated to ensuring a secure and solid network which cannot be taken down.
Let’s start with the big one.
If someone reports on chain A that a validator signed two blocks at the same height on chain A and chain B, and if chain A and chain B share a common ancestor, then this validator will get slashed by 5% on chain A. Validators who double sign will be jailed and CANNOT be unjailed thereafter.
This one is a big No No. If this happens not only do delegators lose 5% of their funds; the validator is permanently jailed and for good reason.
This can only occur if someone has your private validator key or if you accidently boot up a backup validator while your main validator is still up and running.
To avoid running into this issue we changed the way our validator boots up on startup. Unlike most validators who are running the node as a service. We have a custom script which looks at a database hosted on a separate secure server which basically just answers with a Yes or No when queried. (This is done VIA webpage)
If the response our validator gets from the database is a Yes; it means it is okay to boot up the node. However if the response is a No, the validator will not start up the node service on boot.
This ensures that if we ever need to boot up a backup validator because our main one is down we will not run into a double signing. Hence ensuring safety of everyone’s funds.
Now onto problem number two.
If a validator misses more than 95% of the last 20000 blocks (~27.7hours), they will get slashed by 0.1%. Validators may
unjailtheir validators after a 600s (10minute) window.
To ensure our validator is never down we have multiple monitoring services looking at different parts of the Alif Network. We have a monitor for main validator as most validator do (I Hope). Second, we have another monitor (running on all our sentries) which looks at other sentries in the network to make sure non have dropped and to top it all off; we have a monitor on our Main Validator which looks at all the other monitors to make sure they aren’t malfunctioning.
I know… It’s a lot of monitoring going on; but this is to ensure there are no problems with downtime. Of course all this monitoring is reported to our team at Alif who are dedicated and trained professionals ready to tackle any problem thrown at them.
In addition to this; a big threat for downtime can be a DDOS(Distributed Denial Of Service) Attack or DOS(Denial Of Service) Attack. This occurs when someone sends a lot of garbage information to a node/validator via open ports or other communication links.
To solve this problem we have used Sentry nodes. Basically our main validator will never talk to any node on the network other than it’s private sentries and our private sentries will never reveal the identity(IP address) of our main validator to anyone on the network. This is done via firewall settings allowing only connections from the sentries to the main validator.
With these things in my mind all our current and future delegators can rest assured that we here at Alif are dedicated to keeping your money safe and growing.
As many of you might have already guessed; all this costs a lot of money and time to setup and monitor. For this we have a team of Full Stack Developers always ready to go.
Currently Alif offers a commission rate of 0% to stay competitive with our fellow validators. We plan to continue to offer this until we build trust and a strong bond with our delegators. We will never raise the commission rate without first announcing it via twitter/forums/telegram and ensuring all of us are on the same page.
We are dedicated to offering the best service; This means a strong team, Strong Servers and a dedicated media team for keeping everyone informed. Quality of our work will never change. We are here for the long run and look forward to working with the community !
Let’s all work towards a brighter future for everyone involved in the network. We would like to encourage other validators to use the same or better setups to ensure all of us are safe and prosperous.
If anyone has any questions feel free to post under this post or reach out to us via telegram / twitter
Thank you for taking the time to read all of this. See you all in the future when we’re all multi millionaires/ billionaires.