JIS  Vol.10 No.1 , January 2019
The Hazards of Misusing the Smart Contract: An AHP Approach to Its Risk
Abstract: This article explores four critical groups of systematic risk embedded in smart contract employment using the analytic hierarchy process (AHP). The four principal risk analysis groups include: 1) transparency in the light of corporate governance 2) IT security 3) contract management automation and 4) legality. The AHP assists both decision-makers and stakeholders alike in the evaluation process essential for identifying potential technological constraints posed within a permissioned blockchain environment using peer-to-peer format in the absence of digital currency. Based upon critical assessment, the AHP methodology enables pairwise comparisons among different features and consequently increases the knowledge regarding these attributes in light of the software’s risk assessment.
Cite this paper: Luciano, R. (2019) The Hazards of Misusing the Smart Contract: An AHP Approach to Its Risk. Journal of Information Security, 10, 25-44. doi: 10.4236/jis.2019.101002.

[1]   Swan, M. (2015) Blockchain: Blueprint for a New Economy. O’Reilly Media, Inc., Sebastopol, California.

[2]   Nakamoto, S. (2008) Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System.

[3]   Buterin, V. (2014) A Next Generation Smart Contract & Decentralized Application Platform.

[4]   Natarajan, H., Krause, S. and Gradstein, H. (2017) Distributed Ledger Technology and Blockchain. World Bank Group.

[5]   Risk. (n.d.).

[6]   Boehm, B.W. (1991) Software Risk Management: Principles and Practices. IEEE Software, 8, 32-41.

[7]   Stoneburner, G., Goguen, A.Y. and Feringa, A. (2002) Sp 800-30. Risk Management Guide for Information Technology Systems.

[8]   Fairley, R. (1994) Risk Management for Software Projects. IEEE Software, 11, 57-67.

[9]   Standish Group International. The Chaos Report.

[10]   Eveleens, J. and Verhoef, C. (2010) The Rise and Fall of the Chaos Report Figures. IEEE Software, 27, 30-36.

[11]   Charette, R.N. (2005) Why Software Fails. IEEE Spectrum, 42, 42-49.

[12]   Bannerman, P.L. (2008) Risk and Risk Management in Software Projects: A Reassessment. Journal of Systems and Software, 81, 2118-2133.

[13]   Neves, S.M., da Silva, C.E.S., Salomon, V.A.P., da Silva, A.F. and Sotomonte, B.E.P. (2014) Risk Management in Software Projects through Knowledge Management Techniques: Cases in Brazilian Incubated Technology-Based Firms. International Journal of Project Management, 32, 125-138.

[14]   Aslam, A., Ahmad, N., Saba, T., Almazyad, A.S., Rehman, A., Anjum, A. and Khan, A. (2017) Decision Support System for Risk Assessment and Management Strategies in Distributed Software Development. IEEE Access, 5, 20349-20373.

[15]   Christidis, K. and Devetsikiotis, M. (2016) Blockchains and Smart Contracts for the Internet of Things. IEEE Access, 4, 2292-2303.

[16]   Alharby, M. and Van Moorsel, A. (2017) A Systematic Mapping Study on Current Research Topics in Smart Contracts. International Journal of Computer Science and Information Technology, 9, 151-164.

[17]   Li, X., Jiang, P., Chen, T., Luo, X. and Wen, Q. (2017) A Survey on the Security of Blockchain Systems. Future Generation Computer Systems. (In Press)

[18]   Atzei, N., Bartoletti, M. and Cimoli, T. (2017) A Survey of Attacks on Ethereum Smart Contracts (Sok). International Conference on Principles of Security and Trust, Uppsala, 24-25 April 2017, 164-186.

[19]   Mendling, J., Weber, I., Aalst, W.V.D., Brocke, J.V., Cabanillas, C., Daniel, F. and Zhu, L. (2018) Blockchains for Business Process Management-Challenges and Opportunities. ACM Transactions on Management Information Systems, 9, Article No. 4.

[20]   Luu, L., Chu, D.H., Olickel, H., Saxena, P. and Hobor, A. (2016) Making Smart Contracts Smarter. Proceedings of the 2016 ACM SIGSAC Conference on Computer and Communications Security, Vienna, 24-28 October 2016, 254-269.

[21]   Walport, M. (2016) Distributed Ledger Technology: Beyond Blockchain. UK Government Office for Science.

[22]   Wright, A. and De Filippi, P. (2015) Decentralized Blockchain Technology and the Rise of Lex Cryptographia.

[23]   Governatori, G., Idelberger, F., Milosevic, Z., Riveret, R., Sartor, G. and Xu, X. (2018) On Legal Contracts, Imperative and Declarative Smart Contracts, and Blockchain Systems. Artificial Intelligence and Law, 26, 377-409.

[24]   De Filippi, P. and Wright, A. (2018) Blockchain and the Law: The Rule of Code. Harvard University Press, Harvard.

[25]   Giancaspro, M. (2017) Is a “Smart Contract” Really a Smart Idea? Insights from a Legal Perspective. Computer Law & Security Review, 33, 825-835.

[26]   Petersen, K., Feldt, R., Mujtaba, S. and Mattsson, M. (2008) Systematic Mapping Studies in Software Engineering. In EASE, Vol. 8, 68-77.

[27]   Creswell, J.W. (2002) Research Design: Qualitative, Quantitative, and Mixed Methods Approaches. Sage Publications, London.

[28]   Corbin, J.M. and Strauss, A. (1990) Grounded Theory Research: Procedures, Canons, and Evaluative Criteria. Qualitative Sociology, 13, 3-21.

[29]   Charmaz, K. (1996) The Search for Meanings-Grounded Theory. In: Smith, J.A., Harre, R. and Van Langenhove, L., Eds., Rethinking Methods in Psychology, Sage Publications, London, 27-49.

[30]   Erdogan, S.A., Šaparauskas, J. and Turskis, Z. (2017) Decision Making in Construction Management: AHP and Expert Choice Approach. Procedia Engineering, 172, 270-276.

[31]   Rezaian, S. and Jozi, S.A. (2012) Health-Safety and Environmental Risk Assessment of Refineries Using of Multi-Criteria Decision-Making Method. APCBEE Procedia, 3, 235-238.

[32]   Aminbakhsh, S., Gunduz, M. and Sonmez, R. (2013) Safety Risk Assessment Using Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) during Planning and Budgeting of Construction Projects. Journal of Safety Research, 46, 99-105.

[33]   Zayed, T., Amer, M. and Pan, J. (2008) Assessing Risk and Uncertainty Inherent in Chinese Highway Projects Using AHP. International Journal of Project Management, 26, 408-419.

[34]   Mardani, A., Jusoh, A., Nor, K.M.D., Khalifah, Z., Zakwan, N. and Valipour, A. (2015) Multiple Criteria Decision-Making Techniques and Their Applications—A Review of the Literature from 2000 to 2014. Economic Research-Ekonomska Istraživanja, 28, 516-571.

[35]   Saaty, T.L. (1980) The Analytic Hierarchy Process. McGraw-Hill, New York.

[36]   Dyer, J.S. (1990) Remarks on the Analytic Hierarchy Process. Management Science, 36, 249-258.

[37]   Belton, V. and Gear, T. (1983) On a Short-Coming of Saaty’s Method of Analytic Hierarchies. Omega, 11, 228-230.

[38]   Davenport, T.H. (1993) Process Innovation: Reengineering Work through Information Technology. Harvard Business Press, Harvard.

[39]   Raskin, M. (2016) The Law and Legality of Smart Contracts. Georgetown Law Technology Review, 304, 305-341.

[40]   ∅lnes, S., Ubacht, J. and Janssen, M. (2017) Blockchain in Government: Benefits and Implications of Distributed Ledger Technology for Information Sharing. Government Information Quarterly, 34, 355-364.

[41]   Yermack, D. (2017) Corporate Governance and Blockchains. Review of Finance, 21, 7-31.

[42]   Kosba, A., Miller, A., Shi, E., Wen, Z. and Papamanthou, C. (2016) Hawk: The Blockchain Model of Cryptography and Privacy-Preserving Smart Contracts. 2016 IEEE Symposium on Security and Privacy, San Jose, 22-26 May 2016, 839-858.

[43]   Wood, G. (2014) Ethereum: A Secure Decentralised Generalised Transaction Ledger. Ethereum Project Yellow Paper.

[44]   De Kruijff, J. and Weigand, H. (2017) Ontologies for Commitment-Based Smart Contracts. OTM Confederated International Conferences on the Move to Meaningful Internet System, Rhodes, 23-28 October 2017, 383-398.