Sybil farming, the act of creating multiple fake identities to gain undue advantage in crypto airdrops, has been a nagging problem in the crypto industry. Hop Protocol, a cross-chain bridging protocol, has introduced a novel approach to address this issue.
Often, new projects see a surge of wallet addresses interacting randomly in hopes of receiving a yet-to-be-launched cryptocurrency through airdrops, which typically reward a community’s “most loyal users”. Defining loyalty, however, can be complex and is often based on diverse factors like transaction numbers, monetary values, or other project-specific metrics. This presents an opportunity for Sybil farmers, who can generate massive profits while disrupting genuine community building efforts.
To counter this, Hop Protocol introduced a two-pronged approach during the launch of its native HOP token last year. Initially, it identified and eliminated funding accounts used to distribute to other smaller accounts for farming the airdrop. Secondly, it targeted “chained accounts” which hop from one airdrop to another collecting new tokens.
Reportedly, this process disqualified over 10,000 addresses from being eligible for the airdrop. Hop Protocol then took an additional step, inviting community members to join the hunt for unfaithful airdrop farmers, rewarding those who could identify and verify at least 20 Sybil addresses without mistakenly targeting genuine community members.
Successful ‘Sybil Hunters’ were promised 25% of all HOP tokens, subject to a one-year lockup. This lockup period has now ended, with several users securing more than 100,000 HOP tokens for their efforts, amounting to over $8,000 at current prices. This innovative approach may signify a promising solution to the airdrop dilemma in the crypto space.