Stanford researchers propose reversible Ethereum transactions


  • ERC-20R and ERC-721R are the new Ethereum token standards proposed by Stanford researchers Kaili Wang, Qinchen Wang, and Dan Boneh.
  • A new request feature might be the ability to freeze transactions.
  • The proposal is made in order to recover crypto that has been stolen.

ERC-20R and ERC-721R are new Ethereum token standards that were proposed by Stanford researchers Kaili Wang, Qinchen Wang, and Dan Boneh. They are intended to be prototype opt-in token standards that allow for transaction reversal when the circumstances and available evidence so require.

They also noted that the idea is not yet final and is more of a “proposal to provoke discussion and even better solutions from the blockchain community,” mentioning that the major hacks users have witnessed are unquestionably thefts with solid evidence. 

The ecology would be considerably safer if there was a mechanism to undo the thefts in certain situations. Unfortunately, reversals are only permitted under their approach if a decentralized quorum of judges agrees.

If someone’s money is stolen, they can request a governance contract to freeze the assets under the proposed token standards. A decentralized court of judges will then deliberate on the proposal and vote to approve or deny it “within a day or two at most.”

In order for the judges to have adequate knowledge to render a just decision, both parties to the transaction would be able to present evidence to them.

The procedure for nonfungible tokens (NFTs) would be rather simple because the judges would only need to determine who currently owns the NFT & freeze that account.

The proposal acknowledges that freezing fungible tokens is far more challenging because the thief can divide the money among numerous accounts, put it via an anonymous crypto mixer, or swap it for other digital assets.

In order to address this, the researchers have developed an algorithm that offers a default freezing mechanism for tracing as well as locking stolen funds.

The funds will only be frozen if there’s a straight flow of transactions from the theft, they say, and it guarantees that there will be enough money in the thief’s account to compensate for the amount that was stolen.