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Is an audit of smart contracts really necessary?

An in-depth examination of the security of a project's smart contracts is provided via a smart contract audit. Because all transactions on the blockchain are final, money cannot be retrieved in the event of theft. However, even the most seasoned coders occasionally make mistakes without recognising it, leaving weaknesses that render the funds vulnerable to assaults from cybercriminals.


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cypher shield

6 days ago | 3 min read
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An in-depth examination of the security of a project's smart contracts isprovided via a smart contract audit.

Because all transactions on the blockchain are final, money cannot be retrieved in the event of theft. However, even the most seasoned coders occasionally make mistakes without recognising it, leaving weaknesses that render the funds vulnerable to assaults from cybercriminals.

Smart contracts have recently attracted the attention of attackers because to the significant quantities of wealth they exchange. Because they are an essential part of protecting the invested money, these audits are becoming much more necessary as a result.

 

The hack of "the DAO" on the Ethereum blockchain, which stolealmost 60 million dollars in ETH and even prompted an emergency Hard Fork inthe network, serves as an illustration of a smart contract assault.

 

Along with these online dangers, audits are now crucial, and anincreasing number of private and institutional investors are basing theirinvestment choices in Blockchain projects on the findings of audits of smartcontracts.

 

What is a smart contract audit about?

A project's smart contract code is inspected and commented upon during anaudit. These contracts are often offered through GitHub and are authored in thecomputer language Solidity.

 

Audits typically follow a four-step process:

 

Smart contracts are sent to the audit team for first investigation.

The project team receives the audit team's findings and takes appropriateaction.

According to the issues identified, the project team makes adjustments.

The audit team issues its final report, considering any new changes orpending errors.

A set of criteria and processes are used to execute security audits. Thesmart contract audit procedure involves two different kinds of testing,depending on the size and scope of the project:

 

Automated tests: These are performed by employing specialised software tofind the inputs and outputs of the project's financial assets. Thesetechnologies enable the team to keep tabs on project operations, which makes itsimpler for the audit team to identify common issues.

 

When automated tools are unable to decipher the developer's intentions,manual tests are run. An audit team will review all specifications and thendetermine if everything works as intended by reviewing the program code.

 

Following the audit, the auditors document any code problems they findand advise the project team on how to fix them. The majority of reports divideproblems into severity categories as critical, major, minor, etc.

A typical report will have an executive summary, suggestions, and adetailed description of all the code problems. Before the final version of thereport is issued, the project team is given time to act on its conclusions.

The auditors publish the final report when the mistakes have been fixed,taking into consideration the steps taken by the project team or outsidespecialists to address the issues that were reported.

 

What is needed to request an audit?

The technical information needed to request a smart contract auditincludes the following:

 

General project description (the objective of the smart contract)

 

Documentation necessary to understand the project; intended use cases,architecture and design

 

Link to the source code used to calculate the audit's cost (usuallyaccess to a GitHub repository is given)

 

Programming language and protocol (ERC, BSC, etc) (Solidity, Cairo,other)

 

Desired End Date

 

Final point: In order for auditors to fully comprehend contract functionsand be given an explanation of how contracts should function, communicationbetween the development and auditor teams is crucial.

 

How much does an Audit cost?

The amount of smart contracts that need to be verified will determine theactual cost of an audit. Depending on the intricacy of the code, auditproviders often charge between $5,000 and $15,000 USD.

The price of a really large project might potentially exceed $10,000 USD.The final cost is also influenced by the auditing firm's repute.

 

But why can an audit be so expensive?

Line-by-line code verification is a hard work that takes a lot of timeand specialised training, and it is also performed by highly sought-afterprofessionals. A team of auditors can complete the procedure.

The smart contract security auditprocess is necessary to fix code defects that might lead to securityvulnerabilities, significantly greater expenses over time, or even the collapseof the project as a whole owing to an attack. Online cybercriminal.

 

How long does an Audit take?

The initial audit procedure might take between 2 and 14 days, dependingon the project, the quantity of code, and the urgency. For really complexprojects or processes, the audit might take up to a month.

After the initial audit is over, the client is given ideas for solutionsto use and decides how long it will take to fix faults that have been proven.The next step is a remediation check, which typically takes one day.

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