To discourage router misbehavior, slashing mechanisms will be utilized in the network. The Connext network will utilize integrated mechanisms that are designed to incentivize network participants (i.e. routers) to act in the best interests of the network.
What is Slashing?
Proof-of-stake blockchain protocols usually apply slashing mechanisms to discourage validator misbehavior. As such, slashing is designed to incentivize honest node participation as well as to ensure node availability and a high level of security.
Connext transactions are executed across chains via a locking mechanism. Assets are transferred one to one, meaning there is no possible way for the Connext protocol or routers to steal a user’s funds, even if they all coordinated to attack.
Slashing, however, is implemented within the network to ensure that routers maintain highly performant service.
The staking and slashing mechanism is used specifically to penalize a grieving vector where routers try to keep funds locked up for a long period of time. Routers cannot steal funds by doing this but it would worsen the user experience dramatically as routers could force users into a lock up.
To prevent router misbehavior, Connext will utilize slashing. The protocol is capable of detecting malicious behaviors onchain and will punish routers that engage in these.