How to Create and Deploy a Secure Smart Contract?
Since the early days of the blockchain industry, engineers have been trying to integrate this technology into our daily lives. And to be honest, they have succeeded in many ways.
One of the most significant achievements is the creation of smart contracts, which are self-executing contracts with the terms of the agreement between buyer and seller being directly written into lines of code. Smart contracts provide an unprecedented level of security and transparency, making them an ideal solution for a variety of applications.
To give you an idea of how widespread blockchain is these days, here’s a fun fact: 81 of the top 100 public companies use blockchain technology. And these include such organizations as Microsoft, Amazon, Visa, Shopify, PayPal and even MacDonald’s.
Why do all these companies choose blockchain, you might think? The thing is, building smart contracts and integrating them into your business can bring plenty of new opportunities for all the engaged parties. Smart contracts can automate all the required processes, eliminate any risks or human factors, boost security, enable safe funds flow, a reliable data backup, and much more.
Any business can benefit from secure smart contracts, regardless of the industry. And if your company doesn’t use this technology yet, you might want to consider it.
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Based on our experience of developing and auditing 400+ smart contracts, we decided to create smart contracts best practices specifically for non-coders. These are business owners, analysts, and project managers who want to understand if smart contracts are something their company needs and, if so, how to develop them.
P.S.: We believe that if you are reading this article, you have already heard of smart contracts, how they work and how they can benefit your business. However, if you’d like to brush up on your knowledge, you might want to start with this introductory article on smart contracts. Well, let’s learn how to create a smart contract.
Why Is It Important to Build Secure Smart Contracts?
Before learning how to develop a smart contract, it is worth understanding why it is important to do it right. Like any other piece of software, smart contracts require precision and meticulousness during coding. When deploying smart contracts, developers should be aware of all potential risks and vulnerabilities and consider industry best practices.
Following simple rules and getting a few security audits done by a reputable company before final smart contract deployment might save you a lot of headache down the line. Moreover, it might save your company’s data, funds and reputation in case of a hacker attack.
Here are just a few potential risks your business might encounter if you create smart contracts in the wrong way:
- Code vulnerabilities. Even the simplest coding mistakes can turn into serious vulnerabilities if not checked and fixed in time.
- Lack of smart contract logic. If the smart contract has no underlying logic or it is created with no profound understanding of business processes and financial instruments, it might become an easy target for hackers.
- Inefficient access control. If you build a smart contract and implement the access control inefficiently or not at all, malefactors could gain privileged access to a smart contract and exploit value to their advantage.
- Lost funds. This is probably the most critical risk for any protocol owner since it leads to the worst consequences: the loss of user trust, funds and reputation.
That’s why, if you finally choose to build smart contracts for your business, make sure to hire experienced developers who will take care of smart contracts’ security and reliability.
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How to develop a smart contract
Building a smart contract is a complex process that consists of several major steps:
- Choosing a platform.
- Selecting developer tools.
- Developing smart contracts.
- Testing and conducting audits.
- Deploying and implementing contracts.
In this article, we’ll briefly describe all of them, paying particular attention to the development platforms and industry best practices for the main process of writing code and deploying smart contracts. If you want to know how to deploy a smart contract, keep reading.
If you feel like going through the whole process of building and deploying a smart contract alone is a bit too much for you, no worries. You can hire Blaize, an outsourced team of blockchain developers, to build and integrate smart contracts into your business.
The Blaize company has deployed over 400 smart contracts over the course of 5 years and currently has 65+ blockchain developers on our team. So if you are looking for experienced engineers with a deep understanding of the industry, drop us a line and get a free consultation for your business. You can also read our guide on how to develop a DeFi project.
Smart contract development platforms
When integrating a smart contract into an existing business or working on a project from scratch, one of the first things to do is choose a suitable platform. Several popular options among developers include EVM chains (Ethereum, Binance, Polygon, Avalanche), NEAR, Polkadot and other substrate chains, Solana, EOSIO, etc.
Each platform for building smart contracts has language-specific recommendations, so you should choose developers accordingly. However, all platforms share similar rules and best practices for contract development. Learn how to launch a project on Polkadot in our complete guide.
EVM chains (Ethereum, Binance, Polygon, Avalanche, Aurora)
You might think that most companies choose to deploy a smart contract on Ethereum since it is one of the most popular blockchains. You are right in a way – Ethereum blockchain is indeed the most trusted and well-established platform these days, but we still shouldn’t forget about EVM chains that are in no way inferior to it.
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EVMs, or Ethereum Virtual Machines, are reliable virtual machines running the majority of dApps and smart contract implementations. The most well-known examples of EVMs include Binance Smart Chain, Avalanche, Aurora and Polygon.
Ethereum smart contracts are written with Solidity, a special programming language that was created for this blockchain and EVMs.
Recommended programming language: Solidity
NEAR protocol aims to eliminate the bottlenecks of adopting web 3.0 by providing fast transactions with minimal processing cost. Its smart contracts are reusable in nature, and the platform provides clear documentation, concise mechanics and great developer experience.
The best part is that smart contracts and dApps on NEAR are written with the help of Rust. This means that you can build your own smart contract without getting any new skills or hiring a new developer for the team.
Recommended programming language: Rust
The model of Solana-based smart contracts differs from the common EVM-enabled networks and substrate chains. While conventional smart contracts combine code and logic, the ones on Solana contain solely program logic and remain read-only.
This doesn’t mean that you will be able to get by without coding, though. Smart contracts on Solana, which are also called programs, can be written with C, C++ or Rust.
Recommended programming language: Rust
Aptos is a young Layer 1 blockchain that aims to become the safest and the most scalable one. Even though there is still very little known about the chain and its community, let alone smart contract development, it is claimed to have a huge potential and a bright future ahead.
Recommended programming language: Move
In a nutshell, there are many platforms suitable for smart contract development, and your main task is to choose the one that fits your project best. But don’t worry: even though they have different language recommendations, all platforms have fairly similar rules and best practices for writing contracts.
7 Best Practices For Secure Smart Contract Development
To make a smart contract that would retain the highest level of security and function properly, you should consider industry best practices. We’ve created a full list of recommendations on how to build a smart contract and make it secure, that will be clear even to non-coders, so read on.
- Use blockchain-specific and language-specific development practices.
- Be careful with extra functionality. While standard techniques should be used at all times (e.g., near-sdk on NEAR, OpenZeppelin techniques on Solidity, etc.), other functions should be built on top of the proven solutions.
- Use additional security tools and static analyzers.
- Always conduct testing and utilize additional testing tools as well.
- Hire at least two reputable companies for security audits.
- Always prepare deployment scripts regardless of the smart contract size.
- Make sure to consider and avoid the most common mistakes in business logic.
To avoid the majority of errors and vulnerabilities in smart contracts, the Blaize team has created a separate repository for each development branch. These repositories already have all the necessary testing tools, industry best practices and reliable deployment scripts.
Read: How to develop Python and Java SDKs
There are many industries for smart contract application: from finance to healthcare, supply chains, agriculture and much more. But most importantly, smart contract integration benefits the business regardless of its area, clients or target audience (see also blockchain in healthcare).
If you’d like to build your own smart contract, get ready to spend some time on choosing a platform and all the necessary tools, hiring developers, making sure they adhere to industry best practices and blockchain-specific requirements. Or you could take a shortcut and hire the Blaize team to create reliable, highly secure smart contracts for you.
With Blaize, you can get an outsourced team of smart contract developers with over 5 years of experience in the industry and 400+ deployed smart contracts. Get a free consultation to find out more and get a custom solution that would fit your business best!
We are sure that this article is not gonna be the last one in the field of smart contracts. This is an extremely wide topic, and we’ll be happy to share our expertise. So if you wonder how to create a smart contract on Ethereum or any other blockchain, stay tuned!
Frequently asked questions
How to build a smart contract on Ethereum?
Developing smart contracts on Ethereum is a common practice that many global companies have gone through. If you’d like to get reliable smart contracts developed fast and according to all your requirements, turn to Blaize – our developers have over 5 years of experience in this field.
How much does it cost to deploy a smart contract? What influences the price?
The final cost of any project depends on the scope of work to be done by the Blaize engineers. If you can provide us with the requirements for your final product or at least the idea of it, we’ll be able to calculate the price for you.
Other factors that influence the price include the technology and unique features of the product. For instance, hiring Rust developers would cost more than the ones who work with Solidity.
How much time does it take to create smart contracts?
The team can be set up within 2 weeks for the development process to start. Our specialists will analyze the project and the whole scope of work to prepare a comprehensive estimate to minimize the contract development time.
What smart contract development services do you offer?
The Blaize developers are experts in writing and deploying smart contracts on multiple blockchains, including Ethereum, Substrate, Binance Chain, Tezos, Tron, EOS, Corda, Hyperledger, Solana, Avalanche, Dash/PIVX.
Besides, we provide stablecoin development, security audits, token emission and distribution, along with other blockchain development services.