The blockchain technology is in the spotlight right now, as companies start to realize the potential of this technology. It is easy to see why they are so excited about it -the blockchain technology allows them to store and transfer virtually anything of value.
A smart contract audit is an important step in the process of creating a secure and fully functioning dApp. With so much hype around blockchain projects and cryptocurrencies, it’s easy to get distracted by the bigger. More exciting ideas at the expense of quality assurance. A smart contract audit may seem like an unnecessary cost, but keep in mind that a bug-free smart contract is a requirement for any dApp that expects to be taken seriously.
What is a smart contract?
A smart contract is actually a pretty simple concept. It’s an agreement that, instead of being written down or spoken, is programmed into a blockchain-based platform. The contract can be as simple as transferring one cryptocurrency to another. Or as complex as calculating a person’s salary based on their hours and the number of tasks they’ve completed.
The widespread adoption of smart contracts has the potential to revolutionize the legal and financial industries. As well as make a positive impact on many other industries like gaming, social networks, etc.
What is a smart contract audit?
A smart contract audit is a comprehensive assessment of the code underlying a smart contract. Including an evaluation of its security, functionality, and compliance with industry best practices. A smart contract audit can help ensure that a smart contract is safe to use and will function as intended.
Usually, most cybersecurity companies require the smart contract in any form (source file, deployed address etc). Plus details about the project’s business logic, to get started with the audit. This is because they need to understand the client’s specific needs and objectives in order to tailor the audit process accordingly.
The most common form of audit is an AI assisted assessment of the contract to check for traditional vulnerabilities or issues. That being said, this process is not reliable as the AI is unable to detect issues if the contract creator has masked them within the code. That is why serious cybersecurity companies perform manual line-by-line checks, static analysis, unit tests, edge-case business logic, performance improvements and a general inspection for security vulnerabilities within the code.
In the end you are able to receive a detailed report analysis including all findings. While also providing solutions or recommendations for any issues found within the smart contract.
Why is it important for Blockchain projects?
The importance of the audit for Blockchain projects cannot be stressed enough. The vast majority of hacks in the crypto space are due to security holes in smart contracts. This is because smart contracts are often used to store large amounts of value in cryptocurrency. As a result, they are often a target for hackers.
Most of the major hacks and thefts in the cryptocurrency world could have been prevented if the smart contract code had been properly audited. In many cases, the code was either not audited at all, or only superficially examined. As a result, critical vulnerabilities went unnoticed until it was too late. That is why, securing your smart contract should always be the number one priority and the best way to go about it is auditing the code.
Where can you get a smart contract audit?
There are a great number of companies that are active in the cybersecurity space and specialize in smart contract audits. Some of the more popular ones are Certik, Cyberscope, Hacken, HashEx etc.
The delivery time, cost plus quality of work varies so you should always do your own research and choose. The partner that suits you best while keeping the quality of the end result as your top priority.
While blockchain is an emerging technology and the adoption around it is increasing by the minute. Its important to not forget that security should always be the number one priority. If the smart contract supporting an idea you’ve spent months or years developing is not secure. The entire entire project can fail in seconds, with catastrophic consequences. That is why you should spare no expense when deciding to get a smart contract audit.