Currently, a validator deposits 32 ETH and if he wants to invest more, he has to run new nodes.
According to some opinions, the security of the Ethereum network would be affected,
Developers of the Ethereum network proposed a significant increase in the limit of ethers (ETH) that a validator can have. Currently, the number is 32 ETH and he wants to take it to 2,048 ETH.
The proposal is signed by Ethereum Foundation researchers Mike Neuder, Francesco D’amato, Aditya Asgaonkar and Justin Drake. They argue that the current limitation to 32 ETH leads to an artificial “inflation” of the number of validators, which causes technical and operational inefficiencies. As of today, there are more than 600,000 active validators with another 90,000 in the activation queue.
As CriptoNoticias has explained, in the Ethereum network the validators are the nodes that are in charge of creating new blocks and validating transactions. To do so, they must lock or “stake” (bet) a certain amount of ETH as collateral. Currently that amount of ETH is limited to 32. If someone wanted to invest more ETH, they should always do it in multiples of 32 and run new validator nodes.
The proposal now being presented will (if approved) make it is not necessary to run a new node, but the interested person simply deposits a greater amount of ETH (up to 2,048 ETH) and receive higher rewards as a consequence. It is worth clarifying that this will be optional. Anyone who wants to stake 32 ETH could continue to do so.
This change would reduce the operational burden of managing a large number of validators.especially for large staking operations that currently have to handle thousands of validators.
However, not everything is positive, but there are some challenges. For example, some argue —as can be read in the comments of the same proposal— that the simplicity of the current implementation could be compromised and that the modification could have implications for the security of the protocol.
This critique makes sense if one thinks that the number of validators plays a crucial role in decentralization. In the Proof of Stake model, validators are selected to create a new block based on the amount of ETH they stake and also an element of randomness. This ensures that no single entity can control the creation of blocks, which is vital to keeping the network secure and resistant to malicious attacks.
If the number of validators is significantly reduced, that could result in a more centralized network. In an extreme scenario, if the number of validators is reduced to a point where a single group or entity controls a majority amount of the stake in the network, it could lead to a 51% attack scenario. In this type of attack, the majority entity has the ability to manipulate the network in its favor.
On the other hand, even without reaching the majority, a network with fewer validators is inherently more susceptible to collusion and coordinated attacks. This is because with fewer participants, it is easier for a group of validators to manipulate validator selection to gain control over the network.
The change is still under discussion and must be voted on by the Ethereum community. The developers and the community at large will continue to discuss this change in the coming days and weeks to reach a decision.